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Hi Octane Nissan GT-R to Compete at Tasmanian Tarmac Challenge 2008

September 27, 2008

Just a week until the Tasmanian Tarmac Challenge begins and two Nissan GT-Rs are finalising preparations for the event. Hi Octane Racing, driven by Russel Newman and Ben Wooster and Donut King’s Targa Tasmania veteran R35 driven by Tony Alford.

The Tasmanian Tarmac Challenge (not to be mistaken with Targa Tasmania) is a two day tarmac rally on the North West coast of Tasmania, Australia on from 4th – 5th of October. It annually attracts Australia’s best tarmac rally teams including the usual big name drivers like Jim Richards in his Porsche 911 GT2.

GTRBlog has been following the Hi Octane GT-R’s tuning and modification keenly since it landed in Australia from Japan in June 2008. Stopping first in Sydney, we got a quick look at it in completely standard form for a few photos before it was picked up by Russell and off up north to Brisbane.

Russell is not the kind of guy who can leave a car standard though and even before the car had landed he was looking at upgrades. At the time, ECU tuning was still in it’s infancy and the choices were limited to ECU exchanges in Japan (Mine’s VX-ROM was considered) or crack the ECU yourself.

Click the Read More link below to keep reading!

Link: Hi Octane Racing Home Page
Link: Tasmanian Tarmac Challenge Home Page
Photos/Details: Russell Newman, Hi Octane Racing

The latter is the path they took and working with CNJ Motorsports in Queensland they had the ECU tweaked and within a week had tuned it. This tune bumped power from 280kw at all four wheels up 330kw at all four wheels. With this tune they run around 1 – 1.1 bar of boost controlled by the ECU. A run down the quarter mile at Willowbank drag strip with this tune in July saw an 11.2 second quarter mile.

Once tuned it was time to hit the track seriously, and just in time too as the inaugural Superlap time attack event was on at Oran Park in Sydney. The almost standard R35 lapped in a time of 1.17.1, a quick time indeed. Click here to read the whole story about that day including the giant image gallery.

Quite a lot has been going on between then and now. Modifications have been taking place for a start. While Tasmanian Tarmac Challenge rules are strict, some changes can be made within rules. In terms of upgrades the car has received:

Safety, regulatory and racing gear added has been:

  • Full weld in CAMS approved roll cage
  • Lifeline Firebomb
  • Helmet nets
  • Terratrip
  • Custom door trims to allow cage room to fit
  • Scroth Racing Harnesses
  • Stilo WRC Rally Intercom

Due to race regulations, the GT-R has been classified in the M1 class for the race, weight must remain the same and actual performance hardware upgrades are restricted so the majority of the interior, air-conditioning and even the stereo is still in the car.

Tires will be the standard Dunlop run flat tires supplied with the base model Nissan GT-R.

GTRBlog.com will be covering the race with the assistance of Hi Octane Racing and wish them the very best of luck!