Before a single fuel system had been primed and a spark system ignited, the third annual Yokohama ADVAN World Time Attack Challenge (better known to time attack fans worldwide as WTAC) had shaped up into something special. Not only was the two times and reigning WTAC champion—Cyber EVO—making a return to Sydney, Australia to defend its crown, but one of the most talked about pro-level time attack machines ever built was geared up to make its competition debut. A few weeks prior to the August event, the Nemo Racing Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX's 950whp 4G63 engine had been captured on video exploding in spectacular fashion during a test session. Many questioned whether it would even make WTAC event, and if so, whether or not it could hold together in the heat of time attack competition. It did both and set a new—and unfathomably fast—lap record in the process.
On the flipside, the new-look Cyber EVO (the by-product of a new partnership with C-West) failed to complete a full timed lap on the slightly modified Sydney Motorsport Park circuit (around 1.5 seconds faster than previous) after a spate of mechanical issues that saw it completely miss the first day of the event, and then suffer an engine failure (with fire) on the last. Elsewhere in the Pro class ranks, the Tilton Interiors Evo IX claimed second and MCA Suspension's aptly named 'Hammerhead' Nissan Silvia S13 took third—but only after running quicker than 'Under' Suzuki's Nissan Silvia S15 in the very last moments of the event's final session. The bar has definitely been raised for 2013.