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2016 SLB x GTA Finals Presented by Continental Tire

Heated Unlimited FWD Class battle tops the stories coming out of North America's biggest time trial competition

Justin Banner
Nov 29, 2016
Photographers: Bob Hernandez, Luke Munnell

This is the pinnacle of American time attack racing. The granddaddy, the legend, the one people from all over come to participate in - this is Super Lap Battle (SLB), which is run side by side with Global Time Attack's (GTA) final Pro round of the 2016 season. While Buttonwillow Raceway's clockwise 13 record for SLB - a 1:38.967 set in 2014 by Jeff Westphal in the GST Motorsports Subaru L - didn't fall this year, Mark Jager in the Yimi Sport Tuning Subaru WRX STi was still able to take home top overall honors and the title of Track King. Even more impressive were the falling times in Unlimited FWD, with a time of 1:43.365 being the new UFWD record, clocked by Will Au-Yeung in the Vibrant/PZ Tuning Honda Civic Coupe.

2016 slb x gta finals continental tires Photo 2/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Logo Continental Tires

This year's Super Lap Battle was amazing. Everything seemed to line up just right as the entire event went on smoothly from beginning to end. Sitting up in the tower, watching these guys go out and try to set new records was also fun. Normally, I'm wishing I was out on that track but I was enjoying the runs and calling them out this year. There were so many things going on that amazed me. The start was watching a Lamborghini Super Trofeo racing in the Pro/Comp class, a new class for 2016 for production based race cars or special build cars like the Ariel Atom.

THAT LAMBO

2016 slb x gta finals Huracan Photo 3/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Huracan

Listening to that Lamborghini run around Buttonwillow was an experience that's hard to describe; then I learned its driver, Steven Aghakhani, was only 14 years old. Never expected that one, but then again these kids coming out of karting have more experience - and sometimes more talent - than drivers with 10 or 20 years behind them. Steven could use a bit more patience and maturity, but that'll come with time behind the wheel.

RECORDS THAT FELL, RECORDS THAT DIDN'T

2016 slb x gta finals Boersma Racing Civic Photo 4/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Boersma Racing Civic

The weekend also saw three records fall and a record set for a new class; Pro/Comp was the latter, as it is the newest one, with Aghakhani establishing a high mark of 1:41.612. Now that we have it, it makes you wonder what other cars we'll start to see and how long that 1:41.6 will last. However, it was three previous records that fell that made the most noise. In Limited FWD, Chris Boersma in his Honda EJ Civic Si Coupe was able to lay down a 1:49.834 to take the LFWD record. The previous record was set by Will Au-Yeung in 2014 with a 1:51.7.

2016 slb x gta finals Jager Racing Yimi Sport Subaru WRX STI Photo 5/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Jager Racing Yimi Sport Subaru WRX STI

This year, Au-Yeung had his name added to the Unlimited FWD record books with a 1:43.365 in his Vibrant/PZ Tuning Civic. He took the record away from Daijiro Yoshihara and the Spoon Sports Honda, which was a 1:45.5 in 2015. Finally, in Street AWD, Cody Miles - the fastest man on bags - took and added his name to the record books with his 1:49.865 in the Air Lift Performance Subaru STi. The previous record was set by Mark Jager in 2014 in the Yimi Sport Tuning Subaru STi and that was a 1:50.2. Jeff Westphal's fastest time around Buttonwillow, both overall and in Unlimited AWD, still stands for another year. The oldest record is still held by Billy Johnson in Unlimited RWD, a 1:40.379 that was set in 2012.

THE PODIUM: ENTHUSIAST CLASS

2016 slb x gta finals WRX Photo 6/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals WRX

Records weren't reset in all classes; there were still podiums to be decided for the event. In Enthusiast AWD, Scott Boatwright set fast time and took the win with a 2:05.049. Right behind him was Morgan Nichols with a 2:07.428. In Enthusiast FWD, James Ingram in his Honda Civic took the win with a 2:08.972 while Anthony Cuthbert in the Dodge Dart took home second with a 2:15.308 on probably the hardest compound tires in the event. It was evident on how much he was sliding around but still found the speed needed for second. Finally, Bob Apodaca in the Focus ST took third with a 2:27.049.

2016 slb x gta finals Mustang Photo 7/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Mustang

In Enthusiast RWD, Chris Reber took home the win in his Ford Mustang S550 with a 2:00.336 out of the field of six competitors. Behind him, but not by that much, was Joshua Haddox in the Racewerkz Engineering BMW E90 3-series with a 2:01.275. Nazar Santillan brought home third in the Corner3Garage/SoCal Z Nissan 350Z with a 2:03.109. Honorable mention go out to Ryan Passey from Goodwin Racing and Bret Nicoletti from Rooney Speed Racing for bringing out brand new ND Mazda Miata MX-5s and showing the brand new chassis has some zoom right out of the box.

THE PODIUM: LIMITED CLASS

2016 slb x gta finals Viper Photo 8/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Viper

Limited Class had the largest field of cars out of the base classes but it was Limited RWD with the largest at 13 cars. Topping all of the LRWD cars was Roy Narvaez in the Dodge Viper ACR with a 1:52.896. Roy was one of two drivers pulling multi-duty this weekend. Matt Rojana in the Eibach/Ballade Sports Honda S2000 pulled in second place with a 1:53.075. Rounding out the podium and the second driver to pull multi-duty was Tony Fuentes in the Solo Motorsports BMW 135i with a 1:53.741.

This class also saw the racing debut of the Snail Performance Ford Mustang with Travis Barnes behind the wheel as well as the most diverse class. In it was a Dodge Viper, BMW 135i, two Honda S2000s, Corvette (C5), two Scion FR-Ss, two Nissan 350Zs - with a LS-swapped one driven by Savanna Little from Enjuku Racing - a Porsche Cayman GT4, a Honda NSX, a Ford Mustang S550, and a BMW M3. So, out of 13 drivers there were 10 different cars. You can't find more diversity than that, even in most production road racing fields.

2016 slb x gta finals SP Engineering GT R Photo 9/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals SP Engineering GT R

In Limited FWD, Chris Boersma took a new record and the top step of the podium with the Boersma Racing Honda Civic with that 1:49.8. Nick Chaffin in the Rivals Acura Integra took second with a 1:59.464. Coming in third was Tim Crane in the T-Spec Racing Honda Civic with a 2:00.148. Finally, in Limited AWD, David Haagsma in the SP Engineering Nissan GT-R (R35) took the top step with a 1:47.791. Then Andy Smedegard in the RS Motors/365Racing Mitsubishi Evolution grabbed second with a 1:49.500. Rounding the podium and running in his second class podium was Roy Narvaez in the Narvaez Racing Nissan GT-R (R35) with a 1:51.762.

THE PODIUM: PRO/COMP CLASS

2016 slb x gta finals T Roadster Photo 10/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals T Roadster

Pro/Comp was the new class for 2016, as mentioned earlier, and Steven Aghakhani took the top step in the Super Trofeo with a 1:41.612. Roger Hocking brought out the Evolution Tire and Wheel US Legend Cars Thunder Roadster, a car that brings back some memories of the open wheel cars of the 50s and 60s with some modern safety added. This tube-frame car was able to set a best time of 1:58.412 though it should be noted it's also running a Yamaha motorcycle engine in it. Finally, taking his third podium with a third place was Roy Narvaez in the Narvaez Racing Ariel Atom with a 1:58.758.

THE PODIUM: STREET CLASS

2016 slb x gta finals Air Lift WRX Photo 11/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Air Lift WRX

In Street AWD, Cody Miles took top spot and a new record with a 1:49.864 in the Air Lift Performance STi. Second spot went to the Snail Performance Subaru WRX driven by Markos Mylonas with a 1:53.422. Taking the final step was Johnny Hernandez in the Lido Labs Subaru STi with a 1:54.390. In Street FWD, Ken Suen brought out the Godspeed Honda Civic - it's the one that's more filling because it doesn't have as many speed holes as Big Red - and took home first with a 1:54.933. Cooper Pierce tried to take it to Ken with the Guess Work Honda Civic V6 but was only able to take second with a 1:56.935. Coming in third was the United Speed Racing/Fit4Track Honda Fit by Jason Owens with a 2:04.511.

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The final class of Street, the RWDs, saw another podium for Tony Fuentes in the Auto Function Honda S2000 with a time of 1:50.173. Karla Pestotnik in the Pestotnik Racing Honda S2000 took second with a 1:57.267 while Matt Johnson in the APEX'I Performance Lexus RC took the final step on the podium with a 2:01.257.

THE PODIUM: UNLIMITED CLASS

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Unlimited Class is where the big boys come out. Starting with the RWDs, Cameron Rogers in the Donate Life CA Mazda RX-7 took home first place with a time of 1:45.973. Graham Downey in the Blacktrax/Romax Auto Group Honda S2000 brought home second by turning in a 1:48.462. Rounding out the podium was Gabriel Shadid in the Epic Score BMW M3, turning in a time of 1:49.838. Probably more amazing was the fact that this was the second biggest class with 11 cars in total running in URWD. Out of those 11 drivers were eight different cars ranging from a V8-powered FD RX-7 to the BMW Z4 driven by Michael Essa that used to be a drift car, to the Mazda Miata of Blackbird Fabworx, to an AMG C63. Once again, if you wanted diversity in time attack, this was the second class to watch.

2016 slb x gta finals PZ Tuning Civic Photo 14/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals PZ Tuning Civic

Unlimited FWD saw its record drop twice, but Will Au-Yeung took home the win with his 1:43.365 in the Vibrant/PZTuning Honda Civic. Behind him was the K-Tuned Acura Integra of James Houghton, turning in a time of 1:43.559. Daijiro Yoshihara took the bottom step in the Spoon Sports USA Honda Civic, which re-debuted with center-drive, but was only able to bring home a 1:45.802. Then the fastest class, the Unlimited AWD cars showed up. Mark Jager in the Yimi Sport Tuning Subaru STi was able to lay down a 1:41.309 despite boost issues late into the final day. It was enough for him to take top spot in UAWD and overall. Ken Dobson in the Professional Awesome Mitsubishi Evolution brought a second place finish with a 1:42.594. Rounding out third was Tony Szirka, who laid down a 1:44.788 in the UMS Tuning Mitsubishi Evolution before blowing up his transmission on day one, but it was enough to keep him on the podium on the final day.

So that's it for the 2016 Super Lap Battle, with three records down and a new Track King. Mark Jager may not have broken the fastest overall record, but he is the undisputed king until November 2017 when we do this all over again. This year also saw SLB sold out, with 80 cars, making SLB x GTA '16 the most successful one in recent history.

SUPER LAP BATTLE X GLOBAL TIME ATTACK FINALS 2016
Buttonwillow Raceway Park, Buttonwillow, Calif.

2016 slb x gta finals Pro Comp podium Photo 15/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Pro Comp Podium
PRO/COMP
1st01:41.612Steven Aghakhani6Lamborghini Huracan Super TrofeoSteven Racing
2nd01:58.412Roger Hocking61T RoadsterEvolution Tire and Wheel
3rd01:58.758Roy Narvaez5Ariel AtomNarvaez Racing
2016 slb x gta finals Unlimited AWD podium Photo 16/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Unlimited AWD Podium
UNLIMITED AWD
1st01:41.309Mark Jager49Subaru WRX STIJager Racing / Yimi Sport
2nd01:42.594Ken Dobson777Mitsubishi EvolutionProfessional Awesome
3rd01:44.788Tony Szirka14Mitsubishi EvolutionUMS Tuning
4th01:47.295Mike Chang35Nissan GT-REvasive Motorsports
5th01:51.470Alex Peng310Subaru ImprezaNovak Racing
6thDNFCory Davis57Subaru WRX STIDRC Race Craft
UNLIMITED FWD
1st01:43.365William Au-Yeung113Honda CivicVibrant / PZ Tuning
2nd01:43.559James Houghton41Acura IntegraK-Tuned
3rd01:45.802Daijiro Yoshihara9Honda CivicSpoon Sports USA
4th01:54.904Mike Hatten0Acura IntegraIDonutKnow Motorsports
2016 slb x gta finals Unlimited RWD podium Photo 17/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Unlimited RWD Podium
UNLIMITED RWD
1st01:45.973Cameron Rogers67Mazda RX-7Donate Life CA
2nd01:48.462Graham Downey18Honda S2000Blacktrax - Romax Auto Group
3rd01:49.838Gabriel Shadid81BMW M3Epic Score
4th01:50.144Jason Sharek63AMG C63Essa Autosports
5th01:50.856Edwin Pham77Mazda RX-7Friendly Auto Care / DNA Garage
6th01:51.053Tom Tang17Honda S2000Blacktrax x Supertech x JRZ x Berk Technology
7th01:51.884Cuong Tran128Mazda MiataEdwin Performance/Hillside Auto
8th01:53.299Michael Essa99BMW Z4Essa Autosport
9th01:55.552Rocco Bocchicchio22BMW E30Level Motorsport
10th01:59.774Jeremy Boysen73Scion FR-SFT-86 SpeedFactory
11th02:00.089Moti Almagor72Mazda MiataBlackbird Fabworx
2016 slb x gta finals Limited AWD podium Photo 18/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Limited AWD Podium
LIMITED AWD
1st01:47.791David Haagsma422Nissan GT-RSP Engineering
2nd01:49.500Andy Smedegard212Mitsubishi Lancer EvolutionRS Motors / 365Racing
3rd01:51.762Roy Narvaez50Nissan GT-RNarvaez Racing
4th01:57.293Ernesto Bustamante314Nissan GT-RBusta-Move
5th02:00.197Todd Earsley21Ford Focus RSMy Shop Assist
6th02:02.270Taylor Wilson124Subaru WRXSnail Performance
7th02:04.531Yo Keutla74Subaru WRXSubiSpeed
8thDNFDaniel Albrecht117Subaru ImprezaAlbrecht Racing
9thDNFJonathan Hurley415Mitsubishi Lancer EvolutionTrackspec Autosports
2016 slb x gta finals Limited FWD podium Photo 19/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Limited FWD Podium
LIMITED FWD
1st01:49.834Chris Boersma33Honda CivicBoersma Racing
2nd01:59.464Nick Chaffin78Acura IntegraRivals
3rd02:00.148Tim Crane280Honda CivicT-Spec Racing
4th02:03.736Mark Sutakajana27Acura Integra427Garage
5th02:04.358Dylan Fujimoto83Acura IntegraKontrolle Engineering
6th02:06.662Bryan Friday888Honda CivicProject Import
2016 slb x gta finals Limited RWD podium Photo 20/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Limited RWD Podium
LIMITED RWD
1st01:52.896Roy Narvaez55Dodge ViperNarvaez Racing
2nd01:53.075Tony Jackson / Matt Rojana98Honda S2000Eibach / Ballade Sports
3rd01:53.741Tony Fuentes501BMW 135iSolo motorsports
4th01:54.718Sean Cagle187Chevrolet CorvetteCaliber Customs
5th01:55.060David Karner7Scion FR-SMLK Racing
6th01:57.324Chasen Garcias28Porsche Cayman GT4SP Motorsports
7th01:59.877Eric Koehler655Nissan 350Z365Racing.net / RS Motors
8th02:00.506Ravi Tomerlin8Honda NSXWDL Racing
9th02:01.260Travis Barnes24Ford FalconSnail Performance
10th02:02.313Ronnie Soliman12Honda S2000365 RS
11th02:03.735Haoming Chang171BMW M3Wanganstyle Global
12th02:04.250Savanna Little916Nissan 350ZEnjuku Racing
13th02:07.046John Jacobs76Scion FR-SFT-86 SpeedFactory
2016 slb x gta finals Street AWD podium Photo 21/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Street AWD Podium
STREET AWD
1st01:49.864Cody Miles26Subaru WRX STIAir Lift Performance
2nd01:53.422Markos Mylonas555Subaru WRXSnail Performance
3rd01:54.390Johnny Hernandez25Subaru WRX STILido Labs
4th01:54.653Ken Kasitz71Subaru WRXYimisport Feal
5th01:58.895Sally McNulty412Subaru WRXSnail Performance
6th02:02.118Hideyuki Maki110Subaru WRXSBGarage
2016 slb x gta finals Street FWD podium Photo 22/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Street FWD Podium
STREET FWD
1st01:54.933Ken Suen36Honda CivicGodspeed
2nd01:56.935Cooper Pierce4Honda CivicGuess Work
3rd02:04.511Jason Owens111Honda FitUnited Speed Racing-Fit4Track
4th02:07.708John Lindeman475Acura IntegraCorner Speed Tuning
2016 slb x gta finals Street RWD podium Photo 23/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Street RWD Podium
STREET RWD
1st01:50.173Tony Fuentes11Honda S2000Auto Function
2nd01:57.267Karla Pestotnik54Honda S2000Karla Pestotnik Racing
3rd02:01.257Matt Johnson19Lexus RCA'PEXi Performance Development
4th02:02.422Evan Tran929Mazda MiataMaximum Grip
5th02:07.164Daniel Tran91Mazda MiataHillside Auto Inc.
6th02:08.624Fei-Long Tran86Scion FR-SImperial Works / Mann Eng.
7th02:08.658Nader Sharif92Mazda RX-7Built 2 Apex
ENTHUSIAST AWD
1st02:05.049Scott Boatwright69SubaruPerformance Spec
2nd02:07.428Morgan Nichols575Subaru WRXCorner Speed Tuning
2016 slb x gta finals Enthusiast FWD podium Photo 24/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Enthusiast FWD Podium
ENTHUSIAST FWD
1st02:08.972James Ingram491Honda CivicWeinand Racing
2nd02:15.308Anthony Cuthbert161Dodge DartBaby Ferrari Racing
3rd02:27.049Bob Apodaca1Focus STTeam Deplorable
2016 slb x gta finals Enthusiast RWD podium Photo 25/250   |   2016 Slb X Gta Finals Enthusiast RWD Podium
ENTHUSIAST RWD
1st02:00.336Chris Reber51Ford MustangEvolution Tire & Wheel
2nd02:01.275Joshua Haddox20BMW E90Racewerkz Engineering
3rd02:03.109Nazar Santillan62Nissan 350ZCorner3garage / Socalz
4th02:03.694Ryan Passey200Mazda MiataGoodwin Racing
5th02:05.128Ariel Salazar / Justin Casey16Mazda MiataSBGARAGE
6th02:20.580Bret Nicoletti10Mazda MiataRooney Speed Racing
By Justin Banner
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