Similarly to how Super Street holds our Super Lap Battle every year, Rev Speed magazine holds their Time Attack event at the Tsukuba Circuit in Japan, every December. Just north of Tokyo, Tsukuba Circuit is only 1.2 miles long giving teams less than a minute to compete against each other.
For the last 19 years, Rev Speed has held their Time Attack and every year it becomes more and more popular. For me, this is the most exciting race from Japan. Super GT is more interesting to watch than Formula 1. The race cars are based off of production cars and the audience can relate to that. Rev Speed's Time Attack takes it even down another level. Instead of full-blown cars backed with corporate dollars, Time Attack features production cars built by Japanese tuner shops. These cars retain much more of the original chassis than a Super GT car, and thus has more of realistic feel to people like myself. The names and brands that we've gotten to know over the years are put to the test at Tsukuba Circuit.
Two familiar faces at the event were the 5Zigen Accord CL7 (TSX) and the Cusco/Tomei WRX STI. Both cars were imported back to Japan after being in the US, competing in our Super Lap Battle last year.
In the end, the Sun Auto/Cyber Evo 9 took first place again, this year with a 54.925 second lap time. In second, was Revolution's FD3S RX-7 with a 55.915 second lap time. Revolution's RX-7 is expected to get faster and faster as this is only their second outing at Time Attack. It is still a shock to me that while everyone hates rotary engines and the RX-7, they are always the fastest FR cars at the Time Attack series. Not just Revolution, but Pan Speed and R Magic both have RX-7s that have beaten out several AWD competitors. This year however, the Revolution RX-7 just couldn't top the Cyber Evo.
Event Hightlights •Cyber EVO was testing out new aero and engine settings. However, due to time constraints the car was not able to run at 100%. The car's best time was 54.925 seconds. Not fast enough to beat out HKS or their previous best, but good enough to take 1st place overall and fastest of the day.
•Revolution's full-carbon RX-7 was the car to watch at the event. Built like that of the RE-Amemiya Super GT car but it was having issues as well and could only manage 2nd place with a best time of 55.915 seconds.
•Third place finisher was the Cusco STI driven by Tarzan. The car was considered underpowered by most standards but made up for it in suspension and chassis setup. Best time was 56.667 seconds which is fast considering this is the first time the car ran at Tsukuba.
•Panspeed RX-7 was another top contender, however due to transmission issues in the morning and working all throughout the day on it, they only managed a few laps before the car broke down again. They still managed a time of 56.715 seconds which is almost 1 second shy of their previous best.
•Varis, HKS and Team Orange all brought out their heavily-tuned EVO Xs to the battle. Varis was definitely the lightest using all composite panels. They were able to come out victorious with a best time of 57.963 seconds.
•Feel's Civic Type-R was out running in the open N/A class. They were the fastest FF of the day posting a fast time of 1:00.322.
•ASM did not bring out their S2000 time attack monster however they did bring out their #2 S2000 which runs on full street tires, they end up placing 1st in street class with the best time of 1:01.587.