The Cyber Evo crew have done it again; on the second day of the event Tarzan Yamada reset the lap record at the Eastern Creek raceway with a blistering 1:28.8510 to take the World Time Attack Challenge for the second year in a row. On top of the ladder by the end of day 1 with a 1:30:3690 the Cyber Evo crew seemed to be in cruise control mode and on their way to another dominating victory. Cyber Evo decided to sit out one of the sessions and they helplessly watched their rivals, the Sierra Sierra Evo smash their Friday lap time by a whopping 1.3 seconds.
A new set of Advan Yokohama A050’s were slapped onto Cyber Evo and they quickly reacted with a 1:29.751, but they were still 7 tenths off the Sierra Sierra time. I was at Tarzan’s pit garage as he returned from the track, analysing the team’s body language. There were a lot of scratches to the head and many worried faces; a very unusual sight after dominating last years event. They were very sceptical of the SSE’s trap speed down the main straight and for once I thought they had no answer.
SSE Evo on its way to the top.
But the Cyber Evo crew would never give up, they made a few changes to the car and they were back out on track again. At this point I dropped all my cameras and rushed to the roof top of Eastern Creek raceway, I knew I was going to see something very magical. I closely examined Tarzan as he flew down the main straight, braking incredibly late into turn 1, carrying crazy speeds into the long first corner of Eastern Creek and I thought gee those aero changes have made a difference. I ran across to the other side of the roof as Cyber Evo came back over the bridge and into turns 4 and 5. I’ve never seen any car generate that much pace in that section of the track. I anxiously watched the rest of the lap and as Tarzan crossed the finish line and I knew had seen something very special. A 1:28.8510.
As Tarzan returned to the pits I looked down at their garage to see the normally humble Cyber Evo team celebrating. With one more session in the day I thought it was a little too soon to be celebrating.
And just as I had that thought the Sierra Sierra Evo pulled into the garage to replace it’s cylinder seals; the sprinkling had begun and I began to think the Cyber Evo guys have really done their homework…
I overheard a conversation between one of the drivers and the Cyber Evo team owner where he asked if the car would go any faster. The dentist replied “maybe not”. The turbo on the Cyber Evo had been damaged from Tarzan’s 1:28 lap and with Sierra Sierra in for maintenance they were really hoping they would not be back out on track.
The rain had cleared and the sun was out again. Here’s the Cyber Evo crew nervously looking down to the Sierra Sierra camp.
And just as we thought they were out of the race, sat a very determined David Empringham ready to leave the pits.
Cyber Evo had no choice but to shadow their moves and Tarzan was quickly strapped in.
Tarzan paced slowly around the track and when they found out the Sierra Sierra Evo had some more problems they knew victory was in their sights.
The Garage Revolution RX7 ended up third with a 1:30.5010.
Although incredibly fast in the corners the very pretty Panspeed RX7 struggled to keep up with the pace of the top cars.
Let’s not forget “Under” Suzuki who did an amazing job to finish 5th overall with a 1:31.4560.
I think the guys at RevolutionNZ deserve a mention for their efforts. The car was only just finished before WTAC and with more testing I’m sure they will be very competitive.
The 2011 World time Attack Challenge winners! A very happy Cyber Evo team and a somewhat dejected looking David Emphringham in the background. The feeling of coming so close to victory only to just fall short is not a good one. To Sierra Sierra guys, if you’re reading we really hope you do return next year. You guys are a great sport and a very cheerful team.
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