Tuned In

104: Drifting With an 11,000RPM V10 — Not as Good as You’d Think?

November 17, 2023 High Performance Academy
Tuned In
104: Drifting With an 11,000RPM V10 — Not as Good as You’d Think?
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Sideways legend Ryan Tuerck joins us this week to sit down and discuss the many different aspects of his life — from finding competitive setups in an extremely cut-throat Formula D championship, to an in-depth look at some of his most incredible internet-breaking builds, to a frank discussion on the complete metamorphosis of the sport of drifting in the two-plus decades Ryan has been involved, and much more.

Use “TUERCK100” to get $100 OFF our HPA Motorsport Fabrication course: https://hpcdmy.co/fabpackageb

With a career spanning two decades, Ryan Tuerck has more insight than nearly anyone else out there when it comes to top-level drifting, the business of motorsport, and building some of the raddest Japanese cars the world has ever seen.

Ryan got into the sport after transitioning away from motocross as a teenager, and in this episode, he discusses those very early days and the cars he was building to try and compete on a national stage. This was also the time he began learning about the business side of the sport — Ryan spends some time in this conversation dropping plenty of knowledge and truth bombs about making it in professional motorsport, discussing sponsorships, budgets, results, and more.

Aside from his success in Formula D, Ryan is probably best known for his insane custom builds, and thankfully, we’re able to spend time running through the best of the best, from his competition GR Corolla to his Ferrari-powered 86, his insane Judd V10-powered GR Supra, and his latest Toyota Stout. Having so much experience in taking on massive projects like these, Ryan has some great advice to give about build planning, setting expectations, and recruiting the right people to get it all done.

This episode has broad appeal and will suit anyone with any type of interest in motorsport, drifting, project builds, and much more. 

Listen to John Reed’s episode here: https://hpcdmy.co/johnreed
Listen to Matt Bernasconi’s episode here: https://hpcdmy.co/mattb

Follow Ryan Tuerck here:
IG: @ryantuerck
FB: Ryan Tuerck
YT: ryantuerck

Don’t forget, you can use “TUERCK100” to get $100 OFF our HPA Motorsport Fabrication course: https://hpcdmy.co/fabpackageb

TIME STAMPS:
4:22 How did Ryan get into motorsport?
11:06 When did Ryan start competing?
12:50 Why JDM cars?
14:44 Becoming a pro driver
20:05 What type of car and power levels do you need to get into drifting?
22:59 How do you find sponsors?
28:07 Are the exhibition cars for fun or do they make up some of Ryan’s income?
30:04 How does Ryan find the right people to work on his projects?
32:22 Changes in drifting in the last 21 years
34:30 Rules in Formula Drift to regulate competition
36:11 Technology to improve drift judging
41:57 Starting with a known setup point
46:19 Ryan’s GR Corolla FD build
49:40 Nitrous Anti Lag
54:26 GT4586 project build
59:47 Ferrari 458 engine characteristics
1:04:48 Formula GR Supra
1:09:31 GR Supra Drive Train
1:11:54 Judd engine figures
1:14:21 Drifting the Supra wasn’t the best for the engine
1:17:42 Is the Supra a competitive time attack car?
1:21:38 Toyota Stout build
1:31:56 What’s Ryan’s favourite car in his garage?
1:35:04 Does Ryan still enjoy Formula Drift?


Speaker 1:

So I actually I street drove my car and that track was about 17 hours for my house with no radio in it. So I packed all the tires in my hatchback, a sleeping bag, a pillow and more tires in my front seat and drove out by myself to that event and that helped me get my break into running form of the full time.

Speaker 2:

Welcome to the HPA Tune In podcast. I'm Andre, your host, and in this episode we're joined by Ryan Turck. This is probably a name that everyone listening has most likely heard of. He's well known for his exploits in Formula Drift in the United States and I think at last count he's up to about 21 years drifting. That's a lot of time going sideways. He's also made a real name for himself with some of the project cars he's built, such as his Ferrari 458 powered Toyota 86, his most recent build, which is his Toyota Stout with a turbocharged 3S GTE in it, and his Formula Supra gotta be one of my favourite cars of all time, thanks namely to the Judd V10 that powers it. That's about as close to the old school, naturally aspirated Formula 1 cars as you're likely to get. In this episode we dive deep into Ryan's background, how he developed his passion for cars, how he turned that into a passion for drifting and essentially his progress through from the grassroots level of drifting up to the highest echelons of professional drifting in the United States. We also dive into his project car builds, how he goes about these and how he finds people to partner with in order to build them at the level he does, and if you haven't seen one of these builds in person, I can assure you the attention to detail is nothing short of astounding. We also touch on sponsorship, which is a topic we get asked about quite frequently, particularly from our younger members who are looking to start out a career in motorsport. Ryan's got some great tips there on how to find, how to nurture and then how to retain a sponsorship relationship. This is, after all, a two way street and you're not done when you get that first check from your sponsor Before we get into our chat with Ryan. For those who are new to the TuneIn podcast, the TuneIn's Academy is an online training school. We specialise in teaching people how to build performance engines, how to tune EFI. We also cover construction of wiring, harnesses, race driver education, race car setup, 3d modelling and CAD, just to name a few. All of our courses are delivered via high definition video modules that you can watch from eddyware in the world, provided you've got an internet connection. This gives you the ability to learn from the comfort of your own place and you can learn at your own pace. Once you purchase a course, it is yours for life. You can rewatch it as many times as you like. You'll be able to find a complete list of our courses at hpacademycom for slash courses, and we'll put a link there in the show notes as well. Also, as a podcast listener, you can use the coupon code podcast75 and that will get you $75 off the purchase of your very first HPA course. Again, the coupon code will be in the show notes. Lastly, if you like free stuff, then head to hpacademycom forward slash giveaway. That will take you to the latest giveaway that we are running, and we partner with some of the biggest names in the performance industry to give away some great product. There's no catch without giveaways. There is no need to make a purchase in order to get your name into the draw and if you win, we will ship the product to your door, regardless whereabouts you are in the world. So make sure that you get your name into the draw. Alright, let's get into our interview now. Alright, welcome to the podcast. Ryan, thanks for joining us today and, like always, let's start by learning a little bit about your background and specifically how you got your interest in cars. I actually believe started as an interest in motocross.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so I'm from Derry, new Hampshire, a small town in Southern New Hampshire on the eastern side of the States, and my dad grew up in New York City, in Queens, and he always wanted dirt bikes and whatnot. So he got his job, went to Boston, so he went to a suburb of Boston which is Southern New Hampshire and his boys myself, my twin brother Justin and our younger brother, evan all became kind of of age. He got us a dirt bike and then asked us if we wanted to go racing. So we started racing at 9 years old or 10 years old, did that our entire childhood. He invested more money as he saw us get more serious with the sport and actually start training and doing well and becoming experts on big bikes and then eventually getting our pro licenses in the US. We traveled all through Canada doing the Canadian motocross championship up there, all the way from the west side to the east side, and then we did a few of the US AMA races. We qualified for a couple. It was our first year and then we were basically burnt out. At 19 we stopped racing dirt bikes, but during that timeframe we had a kind of gas and we kind of gathered a huge interest in cars. So from 16 we got our licenses here in the States to 19. We always had like a keen eye on cars. So I think that kind of helped us get to the point where we're like, alright, we've done motocross for this long, we're not phenoms, we're good at riding, but we don't have the money to get coached to go to the next level. We kind of made the decision to, I guess, just kind of stop riding and we basically just turned the switch and got in the cars. So at that point my brother and I pulled our money together and bought a 1991 Ford Mustang LX, so a 5 liter V8, and we'd go around town and mess around and try to do little skids and stuff and donuts and whatnot and we're having an absolute blast doing that.

Speaker 2:

So that was kind of the icing on the cake and at that point we actually found out what drifting was Right okay, coming back, I see a lot of people transition from motocross into some form of motor racing and cars as a result of just getting sick of broken bones and the general injuries that go along with motocross. But it sounds like that wasn't the main driver. Did you end up sort of coming through that relatively unscathed?

Speaker 1:

No, we had plenty of injuries and surgeries through our childhood. I did my elbow, my foot really bad, my leg twice, ribs, fingers, my brother's wrist, collar bone. I actually survived collar bone, which is a very popular one to break on a bike. So we both went through it for sure and are paying for it in our late 30s now.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it sounds like a pretty common theme there. The skills on a motocross bike are very different to drifting, but does anything translate across or is it kind of that sort of no fair attitude? That's the main sort of part of success.

Speaker 1:

I think a lot of it crosses over Maybe not even the actual riding aspect to the driving aspect, but just kind of understanding and being in an environment out of racetrack your whole life. So you instantly you're doing a different discipline but you instantly are comfortable as just something else. And then one of the biggest things that have kind of carried through my career in drifting is my father telling my brothers and I when we're kids are like, as you're growing up and getting better and faster and starting to win races it's like he's saying about sponsorships you never know who you're talking to. So always be polite, be respectful and it doesn't matter, that's just the way it is. You never know who's going to come up to you and talk to you. They could be an owner of a company or nobody, it doesn't matter. You treat everybody the same and their respectfully. So that's kind of a thing that I've carried with me all the way through my career.

Speaker 2:

I think that's an important part to note. That's so easy to overlook and I end up talking to or dealing with a few of the bigger names out there and quite often I see them being quite dismissive of fans coming along. My experience the couple of times that we've met in person, you are the exact opposite of that. You're super friendly, irrespective of who's coming up to chat, which is refreshing. So I thank you for that and I'm sure the fans do as well, but I can see you're joining the dots there that a lot of people may be missing out. On Coming back to this Mustang, you said that you're doing a few skids and kind of figured out what drifting was. Obviously, there's a multitude of directions you could have gone in motorsport. What was it that drew you to drifting?

Speaker 1:

I think it was just the recklessness of what we were doing and it was like practicing getting better at something that was out of control. It felt more at home to me than road racing did on a road course trying to do grip driving Although I absolutely love grip driving and racing, it just wasn't the discipline. That kind of chose me. You know what I mean. We got a rear wheel drive car and then we burned down our town for an entire summer and fall season, then found out what drifting was and started buying the appropriate equipment for that.

Speaker 2:

How were you getting on with the authorities over that summer? Just out of interest.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it was definitely not a good eight months. As far as Well I came out on skates. I'll say that we got a lot smarter at it and found in a lot better places. There was a lot of construction going on back in those days, so you could easily find these newly fabricated neighborhoods with nobody living in them to go mess around on and all empty parking lots and stuff like that. It was never like some crazy scary during traffic scenarios.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, a smarter form of honing.

Speaker 1:

Yes, I do have to say about that. During those years you're talking 2002 and there was no events anywhere in the US. There was nowhere to go drive, no sanctioned events, nothing. So you had to, you were kind of just doing what you had to do, wanted to do.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean it's obviously a less talked about element. It has come up on our podcast in the past, but there's a large element of people that are now in professional motorsport that, for one reason or another, went through exactly what you were talking about. It is nice when organisations actually put on a grassroots event to get young guys and girls off the street and do it in a safer environment. Absolutely all for that, but obviously in some situations that's just not an option. So kids are gonna be kids, right? Yep definitely. Okay, so let's move towards sort of when you started actually competing. How did that all look?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so I started sold the Mustang once we found out about drifting, got a Nissan 240SX in 1991 LE. So I had the Twin Cam KA motor and I just bought Coilovers differential for it. And this is now 2003 and guys like Chris Forsberg and Tony Angelo and Matt Petty started putting on events down in English Town, new Jersey Raceway Park. It's crazy because I actually grew up in motocross there and now I'm coming back there for the first events ever on the East Coast for drifting and we're just in the back lot behind the drag strip in a cone course and just kind of shredding there. So the first event I actually went to down there, they had a mini competition and just single runs around the cone course and I ended up winning it. So it was like a huge fire lit under my ass to just keep going and just I mean I was already in it fully, no matter what was gonna happen. That's all I thought about the entire day through working and everything. I was just what should I buy next for my car? What event should I do next? That kind of thing. So it was like a fully dedicated.

Speaker 2:

Alright, this is Combat One Step. So you're interested in your shift from US domestic market models the Mustang to JDM and that's, I guess what you're most well known for these days is your builds, which we're gonna get into a little bit later on. I mean, grassroots drifting coming out of Japan has always been about Japanese cars. Over the time Formula Drifter's been running, we've sort of seen a shift towards just about anything and everything but US domestic market models that are in there in the mix. What was the driving force behind the 240 in this end?

Speaker 1:

Mainly because that's what we saw. We're downloading videos on Kaza onto our computers to watch and we just go over each other's friends. I was like, oh, I found this new video and you gotta check it out, kind of thing. And everybody always had 180SX's or PS13's or Skylines or something. You just kind of want what you're watching these other drivers do, and at that time those were considered professionals. Like the first pro I ever saw drive was KoGuchi and one of his 180s and I was just jaw dropped. You know, like, holy, I want that car. So that's what I got as a 240 hatchback.

Speaker 2:

Okay, in Japan and here in New Zealand we see these with the SR20 engine in them, but yours had that.

Speaker 1:

The dreaded KA.

Speaker 2:

KA 24. Ka, that's it, maybe not best known for its performance. Is that just a boat anchor? Can you actually modify them and make them do a half decent job, or do you just throw them away and put a new sailor in them?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, back in those days we definitely just tossed them into the SR swap. But they're definitely great. They're good motors. You just gotta do the proper work to them and put them together. I think they would break pistons if you put boost on them. But they're a 2.4 liter, so a longer stroke engine and definitely a lot better. If you just put pistons and rods in them and through some boost out, they'll definitely make some great power or some good torque.

Speaker 2:

Like anything. I mean you can make any engine perform to a degree. I think when I'm assessing an engine, the first place you look is the cylinder head, the rest of the engines there just really to hold up under the power you're trying to make. But the cylinder head's the part that's going to make or break it doesn't flow properly. Is the potential to make it flow better? Because that's going to be kind of the limiting factor or the bottleneck in the whole system, I think. Alright, so let's talk about how you actually ended up moving from this grassroots sort of drifting into professional formula drift as a sponsored driver.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I'd say they kind of just kind of meshed together because my first FD event was 2005. I still had my S13 that looked horrendous, had no kit on it. I was running like old 80s 300 ZX, 16 inch wheels on it. That's what I showed up with to road Atlanta for my first road course event I ever went to as well, and you know my main practice was in parking lots. You're talking like second gear for the most part and then a little bit of third gear sometimes if I found a good lot. So my car was definitely still pretty grassroots when I showed up for my first FD event. It didn't qualify. It was just a lot to take in first time on a road course and it was a big road course at that time and still was making about 330 horsepower on my SR20. I had the like 264 camshafts and a GT2871, some injectors, nothing crazy and just had it street tuned on a Power FC.

Speaker 2:

Just the BASIC SR20 package.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, on 16 inch wheels.

Speaker 2:

So on that basis there, talking about going from car park drifting second and maybe a bit of third gear to road Atlanta I mean I've only driven there on iRacing but you're going down that very well. It's a bit of a hill really and towards that sort of keyhole, I think is it called, and you've got to initiate to the left and I imagine you're well out of third gear probably by that point. How do you kind of overcome that fear for your very first sort of run on a track like that?

Speaker 1:

I mean, it's mainly just a good experience. You know, that was my first time ever doing that and I rolled out of the start gate and started driving down a hill and I'm just cruising along like I'm not even ready to push the gas to the floor yet I finally start coming up to the corner. I'm like, alright, I better start going now. So I was probably one of my first or second times really entering into a turn in middle or top of third gear. So it felt crazy and I definitely made a lot of mistakes. But it was such a great experience you know, being my first time there and at a professional level, you know, watching what the pros were actually doing and how their cars were built, and it was more just like this, just taking everything in from that event. And then my second FD event was in a parking lot in Chicago. So you're a bit more comfortable there. I knew I was going to do a lot better there, so I actually I street drove my car and that track was about 17 hours for my house with no radio in it. So I packed all the tires in my hatchback, a sleeping bag, a pillow and more tires in my front seat and went to that, drove out by myself to that event and actually did really well qualified in the first qualifying session. Really well and some people took notice and that helped me get my break into running Formula D full time, which I would do the next year in 2006, and I've been running full time in FD since 2006, which is crazy.

Speaker 2:

So that break. How did that look? What actually happened there? I'm guessing you got noticed by the right people.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah. So I mean I knew Tony, chris and Vaughn pretty well at that time and they knew I was trying to come up and trying to get an FD and they wanted me to. They want to help me out and take me kind of under their wing and help me get sorted, since they're all from the East Coast and I drove with them for a very small amount of time in New Jersey only because they decided to accelerate their careers and move to the West Coast and kind of create a name for themselves very early on into the drifting world or the professional drifting side of the world here in the US. So I didn't see them often, but they knew who I was and I knew who they were. It's just like the Chicago event was where things kind of connected the dots and worked out. I qualified, well, cooper tires came up to me and we're trying to get tires on the car immediately. It was just so much going on. I was like how do I handle this, you know? And then like Tony and Chris and Vaughn kind of helped me out and walked me through it and they were on Team Falcon at the time, which is that was a team to be on. You know those are the top thoughts. So it was really cool to kind of go through that experience and had such a great energy and feeling leaving that event that bigger things were going to happen. I do have to know it. Actually I met Robbie Nishida there for the first time and that was really cool because he was a Japanese guy but spoke English so perfectly and I couldn't believe it and he was just such a nice dude and he kind of just explained a lot of things to me and taught me a lot throughout that weekend and it was just such a cool experience all around. It's like I can't thank all those guys enough and it's cool to still be in touch with everybody.

Speaker 2:

Let's just jump back a step, because what I've sort of seen over the years drifting's been at the forefront of motorsport is a big shift in power levels and the quality build costs of these cars just sort of going up and up and you see, everything at the moment seems to have a thousand horsepower give or take. If someone is interested in getting started in drifting, and maybe they're not looking at a career as a professional drifter in Formula D but they just want to go out and have fun with their mates, what would you recommend in terms of a good car to get started with? How much power do you actually need to sort of start drifting and just have fun and learn the skill set?

Speaker 1:

I'd say yeah, depending on the level and the financial situation that you're in. If you're looking for the best bang for your buck, I kind of hate to say it, but I think 350Z is probably your best option here in the US, just because you have a power plant that produces over 200 horsepower, they're relatively cheap. I don't know. I think they're decently reliable. I don't know. Go for it. Actually, it's like I drove for his burgers one time, but that was fully modified.

Speaker 2:

Now I think you're right. We actually had a 350Z as a road race car for a number of years and I don't remember it actually giving us any grief at all. It was inherently pretty reliable. It's a big old tank of a thing but you know it's fun to drive. It kind of does everything mostly right.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I like to say the less horsepower, but still a great option would be an 86 or an FRS. And then beyond that I would say you get into some BMW stuff, you can get into Miata's. I think everything's a lot more expensive than that, as we all know, just in general, but so honestly, I haven't even looked at what price points are. But those are all good chassis and cars to get into and they all have so much aftermarket support for them, for parts wise. As far as steering components, steering just everything front and rear suspension kits everything that you need and want is pretty much a bolt-on replacement.

Speaker 2:

I always used to sort of have customers come into my old shop and they had this hair brain scheme of a car they wanted to build into a race car or a drag car or whatever it was, and you sort of sit back and you listen to them explain why, and it always came down to this one last point that they'd say I just want to be different. And the reason I bring this up is you could obviously drift just about anything, but if you want to be different and stray away from the mainstream platforms that are well supported in the aftermarket, you absolutely can do it, but it's going to cost you a shitload more money because you're going to be making custom parts. So, on that note, I think that's really important is to just look at a platform that is already well supported because you can buy off the shelf parts and that's just going to make the overall project cost a lot more manageable. The other one is it's nice if there's an abundance of spare parts and braking yards etc. Because probably you're going to end up tapping a wall a few times while you're learning, maybe even once you've learned. I see what you guys get up to.

Speaker 1:

The first day, the first couple hours that I had. First I purchased my first 240SX, I was already off in the ditch and stuffed the front into a big rock right in the front and the side of the road, so that didn't work out so hot, but it wasn't that bad. It wasn't that bad.

Speaker 2:

All right, let's talk a little bit more about the sort of sponsorship side of being a professional drifter. How do you sort of go about finding sponsors and then keeping them happy, or does it sort of work around the other way, where the sponsors come to you? I mean, obviously that would be the dream if you don't have to put in the the league work to actually find them in the first place.

Speaker 1:

It definitely goes both ways. That's the part that still I think about my dad and how, what he instilled in me and, as you never know who you're going to be talking to, so it's definitely come both ways. Sometimes you just get reached out to with a random email one day and they're like this is marketing person from this really great company and they want to work with you. So you set up a phone call, you see kind of what they're looking to do and what their expectations are and then you kind of continue the conversation from there. I mean, the majority of sponsorships really come from the racetrack, where people are already there and may just kind of take notice of you. They like who you are, how you carry yourself and what you're doing on track. And then you might get approached or you might approach them and you might start figuring out what people are attached to what companies and what positions they're in, and then you might want to go introduce yourself and just start a conversation. I've seen that happen multiple times where it works that way for a great sponsorship and a great partnership for years. So it goes always and cold calling is a difficult thing to do, but it can work and it depends on how desperate and how motivated you are to really try to find some funding or some parts or whatever it is to try to bring your program to the next level. And once you have a solid base and you have a name for yourself and you're competing in Formula Drift, I say it should be a lot easier to try to sell yourself to a lot of these brands and companies out there. It's not easy. We all know that sponsorship is one of the hardest things in motorsport and it's hard.

Speaker 2:

I get that If it was easy, obviously everyone would be doing it. I think the thing is, a lot of people who have dreams of making it in motorsport, regardless what that motorsport is, make the mistake of sort of trying to get big name sponsors on board maybe, or approach companies that are maybe a little out of their league when they've got no runs on the board, so to speak. In other words, they haven't actually proven that they've got the capability of getting results and this becomes a bit of a catch 22. You can't necessarily get good results without the financial backing to run a program properly, but you're not going to get that financial backing from a sponsor when you're a nobody. So is it a process of just sort of starting to get your name out there a little bit with minimal backing so that you can then start building up that recognition and exposure with these bigger companies?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I think definitely. You just have to do everything you can. You have to eat, sleep and breathe that your sport and put everything you have into it to try to get to that next level, to where you have something that you can offer a big sponsor as far as a return on investment. And I mean that's the biggest thing, because the biggest question you get from people that want to get into the sport or are already in the sport is like how do you get sponsored? Well, it's not so easy. You need to be in the sport number one and then you need to have some accolades or something as far as some worth in the sport for a company to want to sponsor you.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, absolutely the other element where with sponsorship is it doesn't sort of finish the second that you've got a deal, does it? You've actually got to keep those sponsors happy once you've got the product or the money or whatever it is you're getting from them. So can you maybe give us a little insight into how the ongoing relationship works with a sponsor?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I think the biggest thing that people need to understand is the word over deliver every single year, Like if you get a contract with a company. The biggest thing in drifting or for myself personally is most of your contracts are all a one year deal. So you're talking all over again in eight months about your next deal and you need to have a great list of return on investment items that you've done throughout that course of year. Eight to 10 months and the contract is just a base of what the sponsor wants from you or what you're going to produce for the sponsor. But that should be the least amount. That should be the basic amount of things you do. You should be going way overboard and trying to over deliver every single chance that you get so that they literally can't say no.

Speaker 2:

So they see that value in you 100%.

Speaker 1:

You want to give them no opportunity to say, ah, we might go with this other guy or you didn't do so hot this year. And results. You want to be able to have something in your back pocket if maybe you didn't have a great season, you didn't get results, but you did all of this other stuff off track or on social or content creation or whatever it is to really back up your sponsorship and try to supersede those results in a way, so that you still have a great package to offer.

Speaker 2:

Now, on that note, I sort of see you've got two sides to what you do. There's the professional drifting program that you're running, but you've also well known for these sort of exhibition car builds which we're going to jump into. A couple of them SEMA releases, etc. So is that more of a fun element for you or is this kind of a big financial part of your life as well?

Speaker 1:

It has definitely become more of a fun thing for me to do. I've had a few passion projects that I've always wanted to do throughout the course of my years in drifting and that kind of kickstarted this deal where I'm at now, where I'm getting a lot more car builds to do for SEMA projects and just in general. So I'm having a lot more fun with it. In my younger years I hated working on my cars and it was like whatever that dirty bolt, that thing still got threads on it right, just toss it in there, kind of thing, because all I cared about was driving. I just want to drive, I want to drive, I want to drive. I don't want to do the maintenance on these things. I would do the bare minimum on maintenance. I might say bare minimum. I mean you're doing all the proper maintenance but you're not doing it to the best possible way.

Speaker 2:

In terms of working on your cars. What is your skill set as you see it, Like how much are you actually doing on these builds versus what you're outsourcing Me?

Speaker 1:

personally, I'm doing a lot more than people think I am. As far as fabrication and metal work, I can do a little bit, but my skills are not up to a professional level and I only want professional level work on my cars. So I'm always going to hire that stuff out, and I've been lucky to work with some great fabricators like Dominic, and I've been recently working with a friend called Victor, who's semi local to me here in the Northeast and he's he crushed it on a stout project.

Speaker 2:

So when it comes to a task that you're not comfortable doing. You mentioned fabrication there, for example. So how do you actually find people who can work at the level that you want, because this is not easy. Is it Like there's hundreds thousands of fabricators, engine builders, basically anything that you want to get done on your car? There's thousands of people out there, but of course, they're not all created equal, and finding those that can operate at the level for a build like the stout I can only imagine is pretty challenging. So, yeah, what's your process there?

Speaker 1:

I've been fortunate. So back in about in 2008, I was driving for a drift team called Gardella Racing I based out of New Jersey, and I met Dominic, who's been a longtime friend, and he was a phenomenal fabricator and just metal worker and welder and he actually worked for a BMX company called Animal Bikes and designed a lot of their products, and that's kind of where he got his start and what he was doing, and then he had his own car projects. Anyway, I met him through Gardella Racing and he made a lot of custom parts for that solstice that I drove and then, when it came time for me to needing some fabrication work done on some of my cars, I was like rang him up and asked him if he was down and he said bring your car down. So we actually I used to bring my car to his parents' house and he had a little shop built out of the basement. So you're literally bringing like a crash bar for the front into the house, down this flight of stairs into the basement, weld up the part or fit it up and then bring it back up into the driveway, and it was such a funny process. But he later got a shop and so I just been fortunate that I've known Dominic all these years and then he is just so talented at fabrication and metal work that his skills and progressed as the years that I've known him and he always pushes himself and is insane at it. So I was just lucky. That's how I found him. But that gave me an impression on what good work was and what bad work was and kind of I guess, who to go to in the future.

Speaker 2:

I guess you always sort of build up that network. Through your extended network of people, you do find out who's operating in that level. And I mean, for those listening who sort of got these same questions in mind, maybe for their own project cars, maybe they're not building a SEMA build but want something done properly A good tip I've got there is if you get involved in your local car club, you're going to very quickly find out who, local to you from that car club, is doing good work and that's a really good way of sort of filtering out who you should and shouldn't use, I think. Alright, let's come back to the drifting, and you've been. I think we talked before we started recording. You've been drifting in some way or shape or form for 21 years now. It's a long time to be involved in a sport. What's the key things you've seen change over that 21 years?

Speaker 1:

A lot. I mean mainly grip level, horsepower and the experience on the grid between drivers, crew chiefs and teams. Everything has escalated massively and everybody understands their car and suspension setups and what to do to a car to make it fast or make it slow, or make it handle better, make it comfortable for you to drive all that. So it's just been such a massive rise in talent in all areas of the sport.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think sort of alluded to this already, the fact that power levels I think probably when drifting hadn't really made it to the states, you could probably be reasonably competitive with maybe 300, 400 horsepower and now everyone seems to be up around that 1000 horsepower level. This sort of goes, I guess, hand in hand with improvements in suspension and tyre technology. As you add more grip you can make more power. Where's this end? Is this just going to continue to spiral?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I don't see it being able to go too much further. I think we're at the limit of what really we can do with the cars the way that they are, unless you're I mean, yes, you can make more power, can you do it more reliably? I don't know. But as far as the tyres are concerned, I think everybody's kind of at the maximum level that they can be to produce the amount of grip that we have. Also, with the four cylinder there's definitely a little room on the table for power to get more dial and more grip into the chassis. But for the most part I mean, you're seeing guys like Matt Field and Odie with those big V8s that are supercharged and they have massive amounts of power, plenty of grip, and everybody, most of the grid, is still able to compete at that level.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean on this note as well as power levels and grip levels increase. The cars are going faster. There's a lot more money being poured in to build these cars and obviously the reliability is going to start taking a dive when you're making more and more power. Should they be looking at maybe bringing in some rules to regulate this? Pull it back a little bit, make it an even playing field for everyone and bring the costs down to make it more accessible.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I think I mean that's definitely room on a table to do that. I think tires could be capped at 295s. I would love if we capped at 295 and we pulled about 200 pounds out of the car and that four cylinder had a little bit more headroom for power and setup. But we are on a great tire. We're on the best tire on the grid currently with the Nitto, the 555 G2, so we're lucky to be on that and to be able to become one of the most competitive cars on the grid at pretty much all times. But I think there's definitely room to bring maybe tire size down, make the driving a little smoother and a little easier on track. As far as tandem is concerned and I don't know about power level, I think if you bring tire size down, people will-.

Speaker 2:

That's going to drive the power level, isn't it?

Speaker 1:

Exactly. You're not going to need the power that you're making, so naturally you want to de-stress everything that you possibly can, so you're going to run lower boost numbers and just dial in exactly what you need for the setup.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I mean it would seem that that would be an easy way across the board to sort of limit things. The other kind of question or complaint that often pops up with drifting is that it's a judged sport and you've got a group of judges who are, after all, human and they have opinions, they have disagreements and sometimes maybe they make mistakes and this can become a bit of a boner contention with drifting. Have you got any opinions on whether technology needs to be developed to make the judging more accurate? You know electronic devices looking at angle speed etc. That kind of takes maybe some of the subjectivity out of judging.

Speaker 1:

I think there is a place for it. I mean, the judges have such a tough job and they're going to get hammered no matter what, even if they have their best day of judging on they've ever had in their career.

Speaker 2:

It's not a job that I would have any interest. You're going to piss someone off, no matter what call you make it's brutal.

Speaker 1:

I think there is room for some sort of data scenario that could help with the way the judging is, and we kind of have a very rudimentary style of system in that form of the drift right now that they're using as a guide to help them make calls, but it's not enough, I think. But on the other side of that, I'm kind of old school where I'd rather see none of it in the sport and just have things a little bit more open and not so. I don't know, I might be on my own island talking and thinking this way, but I just think that it was a little bit more fun when it wasn't so like quantifiable, because all the drivers, all the sponsors and everybody and fans want to see a quantifiable situation, which is extremely difficult to do in drifting. And we've got in circles and circles and circles for the last 20-something years of changing the judging criteria and the judges themselves and this and that, and we've always come just kind of back to the same thing, or not the same thing, but a similar thing in a different way. Right now I think and a lot of people are also probably going to disagree with me but I think that the way, the system that they have now I think is pretty good and on a good path. It's obviously needs a couple more years for them to just kind of work out the kinks in it and I think there will be a better area for some data to kind of play a role. Right now I don't think it's the right time and the data that we have I don't think is the best way to do it. But I think there's so much out there as far as data is concerned to take from and to overlay and display, I think they just would need to staff up, like there'd have to be a separate team of people acquiring this data, overlaying it and getting it into a readable situation in time for the judges to actually use it as a tool to judge the runs on track. But you're talking about a live show and I'm needing to see that within like five, 10 seconds after the runs.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think just with my knowledge of products out there in the motorsport environment that could be useful. To that I'd say yeah, possibly we don't have anything that's ideally suited to that criteria right now, but maybe in five years' time we will get it. I mean, I know Mad Mike here in New Zealand ran his Drift Shifters series which was for those who haven't sort of seen it, they look it up on YouTube but kind of was like almost a gamified pinball style drift competition which was electronically scored, and I remember watching that in Auckland. I think it was the first one he ran and quite quickly people figured out how to cheat that system. I mean not necessarily cheat, but how to get the best scores. But it kind of ended up being counterproductive because on an outside clip around a barrier you get maximum points by having the back of the car stuck to that wall the whole way around. But you could also just drive around it rubbing the side of the car around the wall and get the same points, which defeats the purpose. But people figure out where the loop holes are and obviously exploit them. So anything, particularly with Formula Drift, anything that is broadened, needs to be absolutely robust, because you don't want a situation like that, obviously, but I'm fortunately not the one making those calls and I don't envy those who do. In terms of the judging, I'm interested how, after so many years doing this, how do you judge your own performance or improvement, year on year, event on event? Is this just you know when you've done better? You're looking at your scores. You're looking, obviously, where you finish in the event. Would it be easier for you? Obviously, road racing's easy. You get a lap time. You know if you're better or slower.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I think for me. You know you're still searching for like that last five or 10% in skill set and it takes the longest to kind of achieve. It takes longer now to achieve maybe 1% then back in the early days when obviously everything was still new and you're learning so much so quickly. So now I try to focus on just understanding car setup better, really rely on my crew chief, brian Hartsock, a lot and we've really come up with a really good playbook for that, gr Carolla chassis and just understanding what changes are gonna do at what track and really just keeping a really great logbook of notes throughout the weekend that we can go back to the year before and kind of know what our setup was, how I was driving during that time, and then I think a lot of it now to be able to get better is really just watching video and understanding how things went last year and then try to take a lot of the negatives or things that didn't work out so well and figure out how to apply that better whether it's my driving on track or it's car setup that we're struggling with and just apply that better and come at it and just try to better yourself throughout the weekend. Is that going to net you better results? I mean, maybe not, but it's gonna give you a way better chance, for sure. Yeah.

Speaker 2:

I guess, coming back to your point about keeping notes on each track and your setup, once you're sort of stable with a platform that isn't changing dramatically season on season, I'm guessing you sort of roll out of the trailer at an event and you would apply the setup that you know. You sort of had success with the previous year and you're sort of already starting essentially from a known good starting point, exactly.

Speaker 1:

yeah, the weekends that I do the best at FD is when we roll the car off the trailer and a setup is nailed and I'm instantly comfortable and I'm just jumping the tandem right away and I'm comfortable right off the bat. That doesn't happen as often as I would like and you're talking like a perfect setup where you just feel like you can do absolutely anything in the car, and that's super difficult to achieve, where we always are close to a setup in the car. These days, because we've had Nitto the past few years, the GR Corolla hasn't changed much as far as setup is concerned and we are always really within the window of where I want the car to be and it's just a matter of if I'm feeling comfortable to drive this setup where it needs to go and how quickly I can adapt to, I guess, the track and everything all over again year in and year out.

Speaker 2:

On that basis, how much seat time are you getting practicing between rounds?

Speaker 1:

I would say not enough. It's sometimes it's a decent amount, like sometimes I'll hit two weekends of drifting in between Formula Drift rounds and other weekends. It's you're not doing a lot.

Speaker 2:

Now you see, this is a perishable skill, so seat time really is going to be critical.

Speaker 1:

Definitely, and it's not, I guess at this stage. Sometimes you get pulled in multiple directions and doing sponsor obligations or getting maybe a couple of gigs doing stunt driving stuff and that kind of take your time. Now that I have a family and a son involved and wanting now I want to be home more often, so all of that stuff just plays a massive role in how much driving you're going to get away from the race track or, sorry, at the race track.

Speaker 2:

So you've sort of talked a little bit about set up there and getting kind of in that window. What's this look like for you? What are you actually changing, I guess, between runs to try and get the car dialed in? I mean, is this suspension settings, ride height, spring rates, damping, or are you changing final drive? I'm guessing, kind of you know where your final drive will be Power settings in a turbocharged car. All of the above give us some insight.

Speaker 1:

So in the smaller tracks we'll start with a smaller frame turbo just for some more low end torque. There's three tracks that we run the small turbo at and then the rest are all the big turbo. But the main things that we go through are we start out with a higher tire pressure, shock adjustments, all pretty much in the middle and spring rate. We show up with what we want to run, unless there's something drastic happening on the race track and really the biggest thing that we do is just the final drive dialing in the gear because, depending on grip level and all of that and you're going to change sometimes we're changing our gear ratio, which is changing it for like two miles an hour. So we really try to get really, really close on where we want to be, where that rev limiter where we're really just tickling a rev limiter maybe in the fastest or highest horsepower area of the race track so that we're always in the meat of the power and never underneath or overshooting it Just because that four cylinder. We have to stretch the power on that thing as far as we can possibly get it for the setups that we want to run. So throughout the practice sessions we'll usually go out with a loose setup instantly come. We'll come back and either make a gear change immediately or just go down on tire pressure to a more normal pressure that we're going to run, and then, if I'm feeling comfortable on that, we will make some shock adjustments and start making a car faster.

Speaker 2:

Okay, probably a good segue into talking about the GR Corolla, your actual competition car. With that car it's obviously I say obviously, maybe on face value, if you are looking at all of your options to turn into a professional drift car, maybe the GR Corolla wouldn't be right at the very top of that list, being that in stock form it's a transverse mount engine, it's four wheel drive, it's not really designed as a drift car. And obviously we've had Stephen Papadakis on the podcast earlier, so we did actually talk quite a bit about the development of the car and specifically around the engine. So for those who want to dive a bit deeper, we'll put a link to that episode in the show notes. But the conversion to the different engine and also obviously purely rear wheel drive is this, in your opinion, a feature or a bug with your particular car?

Speaker 1:

I think it's a cool feature. You know there's a lot of work to convert it to rear wheel drive and all of that, and Steph did a great job on the platform and everything. But you know the car actually looks a lot shorter than it actually is. It's actually a 104 inch wheelbase. It is pretty wide now. Yeah, I mean as far as like a comparison to the GR, it's a. I think the GR Corolla is a phenomenal platform that Toyota has built and kind of given us tuners to run with.

Speaker 2:

Well, they're probably actually one of the only companies at the moment making you know I'll use air quotes affordable performance cars. I mean. A lot of the manufacturers seem to have really sort of dropped off the radar in terms of producing fun cars that us as enthusiasts kind of want to get stuck into and modify. So the GR Yaris and GR Corolla really tick those boxes. So hats off to Toyota for doing a great job. The obvious element that you're really missing here is capacity and cylinders, and you've sort of already alluded to the fact that this does put you at a bit of a deficit compared to the big supercharged V8s with just torque for days. Does this make your job as a driver more challenging?

Speaker 1:

I'd say yes and no, I think, since I know the car so well. Now we get into a situation where we want to add more grip to the car, but we can't. We can only, you know, you can only run that kind of grip to power coefficient or whatever that is out there, but you need to be able to overturn the tires, power wise, you know, and the knitos that we have can definitely put down a lot of grip level. So we're definitely, this year more than others, we're coming into that area where we want to turn the car up but we can't. And is it a drawback? I'd say not very often. I mean, the car is very competitive and we're able to squeeze even us squeezing everything out of it. It is still fully competitive and fully capable of winning any round of Formula Drift. It just makes my life when we're on a razor edge of a setup where everything has to be perfect. It just makes my life a little bit harder behind the wheel and having to drive absolutely perfectly. Where, you know, I had this in Seattle this year against Chelsea. We had this car turned off beyond anything I've ever driven before and it was absolutely insane to drive. And if I made one mistake. I would just catch understeer in the front end and that would be it. You'd be done. You couldn't recover, you know. So it's one of those things where you have to be perfect, where if we had a little bit more power in the car, then I would open up the window of grip level, where I wouldn't have to drive 10-10s or have the car set on 10-10s, where I'd have a little bit more of A bit more room for error. Exactly yeah.

Speaker 2:

In terms of the power level. That's one thing. I mean you can, within mechanical reliability limits, put bigger turbos on, run more boost, and so the power level is one element, but I think the part that's actually more important, at least in my experience, is as we go to bigger turbos on smaller capacity engines, we end up with lag and boost response problems. How much of an issue is that with the little four cylinder?

Speaker 1:

It's not the package that Steph has made out of that little four cylinder. Well, sorry, it's a big four cylinder.

Speaker 2:

But still tiny in comparison to the V8s right.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, oh for sure, it's definitely still half the amount of the V8s. But yeah, we run a nice strong shot of nitrous right off the bottom end about 3000 RPMs and that fills the entire bottom area of power. So that thing lights the turbo straight up and we run the nitrous right over the top if we have to on some of the bank tracks, and it's a phenomenal power band. It has a lot of power for a smaller engine in the field, for sure, and I don't complain about power delivery at all, it's just mainly the overall power up top.

Speaker 2:

Okay, yeah, that makes sense. So essentially, nitrous assisted anti-lag? Yeah, 100%. So you mentioned there if I'm picking up what you're putting down it can eventually run just as a fill. So I'm guessing, once you go to X amount of throttle and it's off boost, the nitrous comes in. Obviously that's going to instantly provide energy to spool the turbo. So the turbo will come on pretty quickly after that and I'm guessing once the turbo reaches a set boost level, you could then deactivate the nitrous. But then you also said for some of the courses where you need more power, you'll just run the nitrous right through the entire rev range. Was that about right?

Speaker 1:

Yep, exactly when we need all the power. It's getting run over the top and maybe even put some bigger jets in there if we have to.

Speaker 2:

Never enough power. I just wanted to take a moment out of our chat with Ryan to talk about a package that we've put together that I think, if you've enjoyed our interview so far, you'll also get some great value out of, and that is our fabrication starter package. Now, for anyone who is involved in their own project, car build fabrication is almost always a part of this, and the traditional method is being to take your car to a performance workshop or a specialist fabricator to get this work done. Now, that can be incredibly expensive. It's difficult to find fabricators that will work at a high level, and it also limits what you can personally do on your own car. Fortunately, the skills of motorsport fabrication aren't that difficult to learn if you understand the principles, and that is what this package will teach you. It starts with our motorsport fabrication fundamentals course, which will teach you the basics of mig welding, tig welding, tube bending, notching, how to use dimple dies all of those products that you'll see in just about any motorsport fabrication job. It's not just a case of going out and spending thousands and thousands of dollars on specialist fabrication equipment as well. You'd actually be surprised how much you can achieve with some relatively basic tools that absolutely aren't gonna break the bank once you understand the principles and techniques involved in using them. Moving on welding is really synonymous with motorsport fabrication, and probably the most common technique that you will see, particularly at the higher end of motorsport fabrication, is tig welding, and we're including our practical tig welding course that will teach you everything that you need to know to be able to lay down high quality, reliable welds, regardless whether you're welding mild steel, chromoly, stainless steel, aluminium or even titanium. This includes setup for your tig welder so that you can get started with your settings already dialled in, and then you'll also learn how to fine tune these to suit, depending on exactly the task at hand. We're also including 24 months of gold membership, which gives you access to our live weekly webinars, where we cover a particular topic in the performance automotive realm and we dive in deep for around about an hour. If you can't watch live, you can, as a gold member, review our archive of webinars. We've got over 300 hours of existing content. This is an absolute gold mine of information, one of the fastest ways to expand your knowledge on a huge range of performance automotive topics. This package deal is usually $299 US. You can use the coupon code TERC100, that is, t-u-e-r-c-k-100, and that will get you $100 off, bringing it down to just $199 US. Even at $199 US, we are still covering this with our 60 day no questions asked money back guarantee. So if you purchase and, for any reason at all, decide it's not quite what you expected or not right for you, no problem, let us know. You'll get a full refund of the purchase price. As usual, we'll put a link to this package, as well as the coupon code, in the show notes. Alright, let's get back to our chat with Ryan now. Alright, let's move into some of the other cars that you're known for outside of Formula Drift, and we'll start with the GT4586. It's a bunch of numbers in there, which all makes sense once you understand why. So it's got a Ferrari 458 engine in it. How did this project actually come about?

Speaker 1:

It came about when Gum out, my main sponsor at the time they wanted to do a build project for SEMA and they wanted to do I think it was like an older Toyota Celica or like an 80s car that was redone, throw a 2J in it and have it be, just cause it's cool, old, wide body car. And I was like that's cool, it's been done. I've had this idea how about we double the budget or more and then go after this idea? So I presented them the Ferrari engine in an 86 and they said let's go for it. So it was pretty much as easy as that. I had such a good dialogue with my sponsor at the time at Gum out his name was Rusty, and another friend of ours, kenan, who helped really kick the thing over the finish line and it was just more conversation like let's just do this instead and this is why. And it worked out.

Speaker 2:

I mean anything you're gonna put a Ferrari engine into something that isn't a Ferrari is obviously gonna have a certain amount of wow factor. Where did the spark of this idea actually come from? For you, though, cause obviously it sounds like you'd had this sitting in your mind for a while?

Speaker 1:

It came from really wanting to do the Judd motor, after watching a lot of the late George Plaza videos on YouTube and understand that's what introduced me to what Judd was, and this idea was kind of like an interim idea of filling the void of a Judd. Not having a Judd engine, but getting somewhere closer to that situation For me was like, okay, well, let's just do a supercar motor because they're more accessible, they're not as expensive and they're, I guess, still able to figure out how to do a swap on.

Speaker 2:

Sure, yeah, I mean, the Judd which we'll get into in a moment is an amazing sounding engine, the 458 engine. I mean, it doesn't sound shit. Let's be honest.

Speaker 1:

It's not shit, but it's not a Judd motor.

Speaker 2:

How do you go about finding an affordable Ferrari engine?

Speaker 1:

That. So I wasn't tasked with that, but they found it and they crashed cause a car got built in Southern California and they had found. I think you know there was those auction yards that by all these crashed exotic and then they part amount. So I think they're on one of those websites. They found one up in northern california, not too far away. I had like ten thousand miles on it or seven thousand miles on it even, and somebody stuff into a poll and I always get crash, more so in the front end. So these the rear engine or mid engine cars, all unscathed on the rear For the most part. So the motors are usually good and they stay early on. So the motor was still quite expensive. I think they had to buy for like forty or forty five thousand, whereas now I think you can find them for more, like twenty five or thirty thousand.

Speaker 2:

It's actually a lot of engine for the money it is yeah yeah so what were the challenges with putting a 458 engine in the front of an 86.?

Speaker 1:

I'd like to tell you everything, but I was this, since this was more of a hands off project for me, where they come out and actually partnered with a builder that they wanted to work with. So my job is more of getting my Current sponsors on board to supply product for the car which is easy because I was driving in eighty six at the time and form the drift. So a lot of the suspension components, like wisefab and bc racing all came on board to supply parts and that side of things. And then the wide body kit came from HGK, the boys and Latvia. So a lot of that was already all handled and I knew exactly what to do. As far as the suspension side, and all that was concerned is more the fabrication that was done on it and the problem solving that was made to adapt the transmission, and all of that was all done by the builder that that end up building it.

Speaker 2:

Okay, well, so it sounds relatively easy from your perspective. Then it was I would find a sponsor and let them build the car and then you get to drive it.

Speaker 1:

Perfect, yes but then I was left with all the problems that weren't done and the issues when actually got to run the car, and the things that were not done properly were kind of left in my lap to fix.

Speaker 2:

So what did that look like? What were you sort of working your way through?

Speaker 1:

just like the trigger wheel they put on the front of the crank pulley and it was a pretty loose damper so it would wiggle itself and it would lose sync and event. And then one time they just didn't even make it properly or install it properly so it actually came off like a saw blade and cut through one of the coolant lines. So there was like that situation. So then I had to go back to a custom flywheel company and use, you know, have them build a custom flywheel with the triggers put, milled into it, and we went back to the OEM sensor pickup, which we haven't had any issues with since. So it's just more of like going through those scenarios something breaks, okay, well, how to make this better, kind of thing. So there's quite a bit of that through the years of driving that car on track. Yeah, okay, pretty much fun stuff.

Speaker 2:

I mean, every project unavoidably is going to have some teething issues, so it's kind of one of the things you sort of have to deal with. I mean, you mentioned you have no stranger to the 86 platform conventional engine swaps. 2jz LS swap would probably be kind of the more common swaps. And I mean the 458 engine is no slouch but also it's no turbo 2JZ in terms of its power output, yeah, what's it actually like to drive is? It is a little underpowered. You know what is it? What are the characteristics?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's really fun to drive. It's one of those cars. I like to explain it like it's like driving in old AE86 with no power, although it has more power issues. You have to drive it all in, all the time super aggressively and just try to keep it lit and like that seven thousand rpm range to really keep it moving on track. And that makes it so much fun to drive because you have to thrash the absolute hell out of the thing. Like you feel like you're just breaking the car the whole time and that's how you got to drive it.

Speaker 2:

I sort of followed this from afar and it looks like at one point, after you'd already sort of had the car out and doing exhibitions and videos etc, you added nitrous to it. So it was that because maybe it could do a little bit more power.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, because we just needed to fill the gap to get to that 7000 rpm range. So it was like it was power would start coming around around 55. But then 7 was really it's where it really was hitting the sweet spot. So from seven to nine, and we just needed like another 2000 rpm's worth of usable power. So we threw like a 75 shot on it and it woke it up. It helped it a ton and it was so much easy. It would get to 7000 rpm so much easier. And then it would be pretty much good to go from there. So I think it dinode without nitrous at 495 at the wheels and then with the nitrous and dinod like 560 or 565. Yeah, okay, which was just enough to make it proper.

Speaker 2:

I mean, it's a powerful, naturally aspirated 4.5 litre engine. Anyway, ferrari did a pretty good job from what I understand. I'm definitely not speaking from first hand experience here, but I think when people think of power bands they kind of think of turbocharged engines as being a narrow power band in the lag, but it sounds like a highly developed naturally aspirated engine still can have a fairly peaky power band. That presents some problems.

Speaker 1:

Definitely. Yeah, I mean, those motors are all. I don't know what the Lamborghini motors are like, but that specific 4.5A motor definitely took a while before it really bled off and came up to power. They're lower torque motors with a lot of RPM.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, definitely. How do you kind of figure out what shot of nitrous you can put into a standard 4.5.8 engine and keep all of the inside bits on the inside? I'm guessing there's probably not a lot of forum support for these sort of modifications.

Speaker 1:

I just stick to the information and the advice from my very experienced tuner friend, john Reed, john Reed Racing and he actually tuned a 4.5A with a twin turbo setup on it and previously, and he said, they ran like four pounds of boost and made like over 700 horsepower at the wheels.

Speaker 2:

So he had a bit of confidence on what he could get away with.

Speaker 1:

Yeah on what it could handle. So he's like just throw this in there, it'll probably it'll be, it's gonna feel a lot better and I'm like I forget honestly how my mental thought was. I was just like, yeah, whatever, let's just throw some nitrous.

Speaker 2:

Sounds great, I need more power, alright, yeah, we've all seen the faster than the furious Talking about John Reed, so he's another past guest on the podcast and again we'll drop a link to his episode for people who want to find out a little bit more Interestingly, I know that a lot of the work that John does is remote, so can you talk us through how that works? How do you actually get a car tuned remotely with John?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so we just use Team Viewer, as far as the access to my laptop, and just kind of go through the motions, make sure he's free at a specific time and set it up with the dyno and try to make sure the car is as dialed as it can be before hitting the dyno, obviously doing all the proper things as far as maintenance and figuring out any potential issues beforehand. So sometimes we'll just do John will already be in there and doing the base tune and kind of getting acquainted with the motor, and then we usually schedule something a couple days later to hit the rollers and then he logs back in. And I usually operate the dyno at a local one here my friends at Kinetic Motorsports. They help me out big time and John just does his thing, do some pulls, either talk through text or on the phone if we're taking a break to let it cool down, and it's pretty seamless. John's very experienced in doing a lot of remote tuning, so I always have my full confidence in what he can do.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, nice, alright, let's move on, and the next car that I wanted to talk about is your Formula Supra. So this is the one with the best sounding engine from World Time Attack. We've got a video that we shot with you there which people can jump on the internet. Let's be honest and find clips of this thing running, but it sounds insane. So what was the process of getting this project up and running? How did that come about?

Speaker 1:

So yeah, the beginning of it. I found the engine for sale on a website on Consignment and it was actually from which I found out later was from a gentleman out of Texas and he was selling his late model F1 program and the engine I ended up buying was actually the spare to the actual car and it was a zero mile, fresh rebuilt redder rock. It's considered the Series 1 of the Judd GV4 V10s, so it was the earlier one that came out with a GV, a Series 2 GV4, which is actually a 4.2 liter. Mine is a 4 liter and I think they netted like another 40 wheel horsepower out of the newer one, which came with some other good bits.

Speaker 2:

But anyways, let's just actually break down one of the misconceptions I hear about this car quite frequently. While you just mentioned an F1 program, the actual engine in your car is not an F1 engine, is it?

Speaker 1:

No, it's all. It's a Le Mans motor. So this motor was derived from the F1 program but made for endurance racing. So lower the RPM, punch the born stroke a little bit bigger and make it survive, you know, 3,000, 4,000 miles or 24 hours. And they had good success. They had, I think, two wins one in Daytona with a team 24, and I think another one somewhere and some podiums. So the motor was no slouch, which is cool to see. It has really has some success on the racetrack. Which was less important to me, it was more about the sound in general. Yeah, so I ended up purchasing that motor. It's like this the stars just had a line. I've been thinking about this engine and everything for like over 10 years now.

Speaker 2:

at that point, so this is from watching those videos of the Hillclimb Championship.

Speaker 1:

Over and over. And then Reto Meisel, I think, is what his name is he has like an SLK430, full tube frame car, just like George Plasas was another Hillclimb driver. Same engine, that DB, I think, was a DB 3.6 liter Judd motor that absolutely screamed. So then I had even more motivation to watch more videos on YouTube not just George Plasas' videos that were posted so anyway. So it's just like steaming with motivation and these beautiful sounds of screaming Judds. And when I found this on the internet I was just trying to figure out how to make it happen. And then at the end of the year of Formula Drift, in October, the stars aligned and I found out that I was actually going to be getting the drive with Papadakis Racing in the Corolla because they're going to be building with the new GR Super that Freddie was going to step into. So that meant that I had my own pro car, Formula Drift, that I didn't need anymore theoretically. So I ended up selling that and it sold pretty quickly and I use that cash to then buy the judge motor and that's all I had.

Speaker 2:

I just said yes, I had an engine and I got a motor in a crate. I mean approach.

Speaker 1:

It has to start somewhere yes, I just knew that that was the biggest key to the positive. Can't sell potentially like a build up, a SEMA build or a program like that, and then have something so bespoke that you can't find barely anywhere on the internet or at any at any time. So I knew it was kind of a special thing that I had to jump on and it ended up working out that way, which is pretty crazy and then I just started putting all the pieces of the puzzle together and made some decks and some proposals and sent them out to partners and people started jumping on board.

Speaker 2:

At this point I must think you've got something against their engines.

Speaker 1:

No, I think the Lexus LFA motor also would have been a phenomenal choice.

Speaker 2:

Yes, possibly even harder and maybe more expensive to find and source.

Speaker 1:

Definitely. Yeah, I didn't go down that road just because I was so set on the judge motor, but I think if I waited long enough I probably could have figured out how to get one.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

I just think it would probably would have been as expensive as the judge motor.

Speaker 2:

Okay, what were the chassis options? Was always going to be super, or did you consider putting it into anything else?

Speaker 1:

No, well, when I did see the engine and the start started to align, I knew that the only chassis to put it in was going to be the GR Super at that point. But when I, 10 years ago, when I first found out about Judd it was, it didn't matter. I was just like how do I get this motor? It doesn't matter what car it goes in, it's just like well, how do I figure this out?

Speaker 2:

I mean, like I said at the start, it was the best sounding engine at world time attack and it's the closest I think most people are ever going to get to hearing the old school naturally aspirated F1 engines which sadly have kind of gone by the by now. So what is the rest of the drivetrain in this GR Supra? Look like what have you got the?

Speaker 1:

engine backed up with, we've got a Tilton 5.5 inch quad carbon clutch, their flywheel, and then it's made it to a custom bell housing yeah sorry, custom bell housing and then to a Hollinger RD6 6 speed sequential transmission.

Speaker 2:

You've still got that manually shifted. It's not paddle shifted.

Speaker 1:

It's not paddle shifted yet. We would like to do that upgrade but we need to do other upgrades to make that happen, which is just such a you just start spinning out of control with the amount of stuff that you can upgrade and do. So I want to do this one thing. Well, I got to do this other thing and then I got to do this other thing. Because of that thing, I've been trying to just hold myself back from doing that because it's definitely not the thing that's slowing us down at the moment. So, yeah, the transmission has been great drive shaft shop, carbon drive shaft to a Ford 8.8 aluminum rear end. And we did that because the quick changes are about 20 pounds heavier and at the time didn't have a good differential like a clutch type that you could tune. So we end up going with the OS Geichen differential for the rear, just so that we could have some options to play with locking capacity and whatnot.

Speaker 2:

So just to come back to that, the winters quick change. Traditionally is that run as a spool.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, the winters. Quick change is one of the main rear ends that we run in the drift cars. Pretty much what everybody runs is a winters or something similar to that. Quick change style came from, like modifies and dirt cars and everything, just because you can change the two rear gears.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, you get the differential change very, very quickly, hence the name, obviously. But the actual center of the winters is that a solid spool, or is there still a differential action in there?

Speaker 1:

In drifting I run a spool. You can run different types of differentials. They now actually just recently, like this year, started testing a clutch type differential made for the winters quick change. Now you're talking just this year, so before that there wasn't an option. But we also wouldn't have chosen it just because of the added weight to the rear end, which is like an extra 20 pounds. And we're really trying to stay focused on doing within our budget and doing the least, the amount of parts that would give us the lightest.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, yeah, fair enough to. In terms of the engine power, we sort of haven't actually mentioned numbers and what's it producing? What's it RPM? Does it actually rev out to?

Speaker 1:

Yep, so it's rated at 730 and that's going to be at the crank. And on the dyno that we ran I think it was an older roller dyno, jet dyno it made 630 at the wheels.

Speaker 2:

Okay, definitely no slouch.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so it rises to 11,000. Now we converted the slide throttles to drive by wire and we are having some interference or some vibrations so it faults over 10,500, so we've only actually been able to rev it to 10,500 at this time. So we have to actually pull the whole motor out to get to the drive by wire system to then try to figure out and maybe add some sort of damper in it, maybe pop the thing on the wiring side and try to give ourselves that extra 500 RPM.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I guess that 500 RPM is actually pretty valuable in a peaky, naturally aspirated engine like that, definitely. Just on that note, when we're talking about drive by wire there's always people kind of argue that there's lag, it's not as fast as a cable throttle, which I mean it's been absolutely disproven. But there are some issues that we do need to keep in mind with drive by wire that cable throttle doesn't have, and vibration being transferred into the drive by wire motor can be problematic. We've seen this at World Time Attack with Scorch Racing the S15, they were having issues with the drive by wire actually closing when the drive was still at wide open throttle because of this vibration issue. And the solution on that particular vehicle, which is not uncommon, is to actually isolate the drive by wire throttle. It's gonna be probably a bit more difficult with your situation. So they had a Wiggins clamp both pre and post drive by wire just to get rid of that vibration. It becomes more of a problem as well when the engines are solid mounted. The other problem that we've actually struck and this seems to be reasonably well known we use a Bosch Motorsport drive by wire throttle body on our 86 endurance car and we've actually found that the connector on that is a little bit suspect and this season we're gonna fix that by potting it and just running it to an auto sport connector and that'll be a nice solution. But it's just a case of finding out where the weaknesses lie with these technologies and understanding what you need to do to get on top of them. In terms of the build of this Supra, as I understand it, you're originally going to do some drifting. You have done some drifting in it and then quickly found that maybe that wasn't going to be the best for the engine.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I think once I actually did get to drive it, my initial thought process of building the Supra is going to be drift and grip, and when I started driving a car I quickly realized how difficult that was actually going to be if I wanted to even be somewhat competitive in the car on the grip side. I don't want to mean competitive, I mean trying to be as fast as I possibly can be the way that you know. We know that that car's package is not made for an open class championship situation. So, for what it was, we wanted to be fast and I wanted to just do a different discipline. And when we took it out drifting it was just the revs, and the RPMs are so fast I can't even explain. It's like you move the throttle three millimeter and a thing revs like 7000 RPMs in an instance. It's crazy how fast that thing actually revs. So when you're out there drifting and it's a peaky power band so you're having to do some modulation, it's just like ears hurt silence, ears hurt silence.

Speaker 2:

So it just had this.

Speaker 1:

No, in between. It just had this weird thing for me and I'm just like it doesn't sound good drifting. I mean it's cool when it's on song drifting, but it's just not quite it. And the other part of it was that kind of sealed. The deal was that they're not made with a super robust thrust bearing on the crank, mainly because they're made to clutch out at the start line and then that's it. Then you clutch in on the pit and that's pretty much all you do. So when you're coming down rowed Atlanta into our turn one and you clutch, kick it in fourth gear or whatever and you're handbraking that thing forever into turn one and then you wrap the RPMs to 11,000 and wipe that crank bearing clean. It's probably going to wear out pretty fast. So my initial thought was to try to negate that the best possible with a quad carbon clutch from Tilton with the least amount of clamping force on the pressure plate. So that's why we went with that quad plate clutch, because a triple plate would have been fine, all of those things kind of combined. And actually I got to actually drive the car. I was like, alright, we're going to drift this thing for the video and then I'm just going to just focus on the grip driving aspect of it, which I was going to have more fun with. I knew, anyways, because I have plenty of drift cars to have fun with.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, of course. I think the element with this to keep in mind as well is if that Judd engine needs a freshen up or it has a catastrophic failure. It's not going to be a cheap exercise to get it repaired. For those who maybe aren't understanding the terminology as well, that thrust bearing or thrust support that we're talking about, that's internal, inside of the engine and it basically supports the crankshaft. When you put your foot on the clutch and the clutch is disengaged, there's a force essentially trying to push the crankshaft out through the front of the engine and the thrust bearing is sort of resisting that and keeping everything in one piece. But there's a difference between dropping the clutch on the start line one time and clutch kicking, like you say repeatedly. It's definitely going to be brutal on it. So that kind of brings us to grip driving and you're fresh off a trip to World Time Attack where you're doing some exhibition runs. This isn't a car though that's really going to ever be competitive at the top of time attack style grip driving, is it no?

Speaker 1:

not at all. I mean, with what Bart did out there and that Porsche, and breaking the record, I think, to the high 117s was insane. We're out there messing around on the 132s by the end of the weekend. So it's definitely not going to be at that point. And even if we had the amount of arrow downforce that that Porsche has, it wouldn't even be able to pull it through the power that it has.

Speaker 2:

It's not a sport that really rewards naturally aspirated engines, no matter how good they sound.

Speaker 1:

You know, I think it has its place. The car is phenomenal. It's so much fun to drive, it sounds incredible and that's what it was meant to be. And it was for me such a passion project and that's kind of why it was built to the level it was. And when I got to build it with Dominic for those two years and it's just like I learned like a crash course in building cars at the highest, at a very high level, in a year and a half time, it was insane and for me it was like such a big, big project. The biggest thing that I've ever done in my career was that project. As far as a build is concerned, I learned so much from Dom and just the understanding of things and it means so much to me to be able to drive that thing. And when I went to World Time Attack with it it was we're still there to better ourselves, even though we're an exhibition car. We're there to. Every time we put this car on track we want a list of things that we're going to change to it and make and how to make it better. So we treated the same way we do drift cars and everything else, because I mean, I've been just in motorsports since I was nine years old. It's kind of just the mentality, but it was always just meant to give me this feeling and, I don't know, put a smile on my face and hopefully everybody else is what I drive it.

Speaker 2:

It definitely brought smiles to a lot of people's faces. I can assure you that much. On that basis, I guess what is next for it? What are you actually going to do with the car?

Speaker 1:

So I think we're going to develop a better era package. We're going to be partnering with a company that I'll be talking about in the near future here in the States, do some 3D scanning, get some CFD testing done and develop something that's going to not strangle hold it so it's not going to be so extreme, it's going to be not going to be able to pull itself down a straightaway, but something that is going to make it faster for sure, and I'm hoping, if we come back to world time attack next year, to be able to break into the 129. So that'd be a good goal to be able to shave about two and a half three seconds off our lap time.

Speaker 2:

That's massive. So, again there, you can't just turn the boost up a couple of PSI to make up for the deficit of drag in a straight line that a more developed era package is going to potentially produce. So it's all going to be about efficient aerodynamics, trying to get more downforce without necessarily increasing the drag coefficient. Exactly, and I think it's really difficult when we're talking about racetrack lap times, because unless it's a track that people inherently know, you've got no real reference there and you sort of say a 132 versus a minute 17,. That sounds like a lifetime away. But I mean the RP968 Porsche that broke the lap record at Eastern Creek. That broke a lap record that was held by a Wings and Slicks A1 GP car driven by Nico Hülkenberg, who's obviously currently driving a F1. This is absolutely no joke. So a 32 is still an incredibly respectable time around that racetrack. It's just that the comparison is just about an F1 car sort of spec.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, definitely, definitely.

Speaker 2:

Okay, let's move on, and the next car in your fairly enviable garage that I wanted to talk about, which is just sort of broken cover, or at least running, is the Stout. This is a car that we covered at SEMA. I think it was last year, when it was primarily finished but not quite running. I don't think you had a turbo on it and there's a bit of engine bay work left to do. But what is this project? What is a Stout?

Speaker 1:

for those who haven't seen it, yeah, so the Stout is a 1966 Toyota pickup truck and it was one of the first ones that was brought to the US for sale. I think they also sold them around the world as well, not sure exactly what countries, but I think we had about 1,500 of them here in the US and it's just a mini. It's basically a mini truck and back in that day it was considered the you know the large size pickup, but it was four speed on the tree. That was fun. When I got to drive that thing around for the first time before we took it apart is learning all that and it's just a cool little pickup. I think it looks super sweet. The front end is really cool and then, you know, we had John Sebal do the design work for the wide body on it and I think he absolutely knocked it out of the park. I just had specific parameters that I wanted him to add to it or certain details, and he absolutely crushed it. I think he does a great job at exaggerating what is already there but not going overboard, to like this future, this future thing, which is also cool in its own right, but for us to be able to drive on track and needed to be more along the lines of what the factory body offered.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I think it's fair to say, from my perspective, he's taken the factory lines and just made them more aggressive. It looks fitting for the truck. I'm interested, so some insight into, maybe, how your head works. How do you come up with these projects? We've talked about the 458 powered 86,. We've gone through the Supra, which really started as an engine and you needed to find a home for it. Are you just sort of sitting up at night thinking you know what's next and sort of scrolling through the entire back catalog of Toyota vehicles to find something suitable? Or do you trip across the stout and go, hey, you know what, this would be cool as a project.

Speaker 1:

It was weird because it was Dominic and I. We were working on the Supra, the Formula Supra, and I think we're maybe like 60% of the way to the finish line and I get a call from the guys at Toyota Racing Development TRD in the States and they said that they wanted me to do another project and I was like holy crap, how am I going to do this?

Speaker 2:

That's a real first world problem there Again not going to be a lot of sympathy.

Speaker 1:

Totally, totally. But I mean, at that point I was so engulfed in the Supra project and learning so much and doing so much. It was just my entire life. So when I got this phone call, I was like what are we going to do? So we start going through a bunch of cars and making a list. And then Dominic is actually the one who found the 66 stout because I hadn't seen it, and he's like what about this? I'm like a pickup. I thought I was pretty sick. Actually, it was definitely better than the list that I had put together.

Speaker 2:

Because the other thing about these project builds is you want something that is going to stand out, and I mean that's getting very hard if you want to build another 86 or Supra. I mean, they're done to death now, correct?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and for TRD, it was cool to do a pickup truck as well, since they have their name on. All you know, they have a TRD edition of all the pickup trucks and a lot of the SUVs that are sold here in the States. So I think that they really appreciated that and they greenlit it, and then it was off to the races. I was buying a heaps more, more parts for the thing, and trying to balance both projects at the same time through the end of that year was massive for me. It was just so much time and so difficult, but it was. So I had to sub a lot of it out for this doubt and there was multiple things that I wanted to progress my level of build and understanding of build project. So that's why I wanted to try to build something in CAD before it was put together in person. I wanted it to be a tube chassis and I wanted a custom wide body on it. So I went through those processes and they were also very painstaking and long and expensive and but it all worked out.

Speaker 2:

It definitely has worked out. Interested was the drive for the tube chassis, just because, or was it kind of a necessity? I'm not sure what state this doubt was in. But one thing I love the Toyota brand. But one thing older Twiters do exceptionally well as rust.

Speaker 1:

Yes, no, this one was actually one of the few ones that we could find in a short amount of time and it was actually when we're working on a race service in Los Angeles. We found the car in San Diego and it looked like it had been kind of restored, so there's no rust on the frame rails. It was actually very clean, but we're going to tube chassis. It's really the only thing that matter was the body on it. And then, come all the way to two weeks before SEMA, we found out that there was like pounds and pounds of bond all over the body. So they just had slap mud all over this thing and try to fix the rod holes and everything else in it. And they look clean in person when I went to look at it. But so I had a good friend of mine, damian, from Auto Explosion down in Gardena, california, and he was like all right, we'll get this taken care of and got the thing freshly sanded, filled and painted properly before the SEMA show, which was great. But it's just one of those things where you can never look close enough to find the finer thing. But yeah, the frame rails were clean. We didn't need them.

Speaker 2:

But besides the point, so the bits you did need were clean, and the bits you did need, I sorry, were full of bog and body filler and the bits you didn't need were clean and tidy, kind of the opposite way of how you'd like it. In terms of you mentioned there, a lot of it was outsourced, but in terms of the design of the two frame, chassis and CAD, how did that get done? Who was involved with that?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so it was actually another person that you had on your on the podcast, which was Matt from Matt 8 from. He was working at Kibbe Tech at the time and he designed the whole chassis. There was just some specific things I wanted to run, which was double arm, front and rear from Power by Max Quick change rear end, and then we were going to run a 3S GT engine with the Hollinger transmission. So those were all the key components for him to kind of put a design together, utilizing the body in the cab, and he did a great job. The design came out great and Kibbe Tech did a phenomenal job assembling everything. It's just. It's one of those things where I learned after the fact that if you're going to do something in CAD, you have to build it all the way to the finish line before you start. And there's definitely some key things that didn't get finished or weren't able to get done because they were just under this new time restraint schedule wise. So things just had to just alright, get this thing moving, we just gotta go. So a lot of things didn't get done that needed to get done and those things kind of bit us in the but in the end. But whatever, it's just more time later.

Speaker 2:

So just for those who are interested again in finding out a little bit more, matt, who you just mentioned there, he was with Kibbe Tech. He's since started his own business. He's a GM26 engineering and again we'll put a link to the episode that he was on, because we go a lot deeper into the design process and using CAD software etc. I mean speaking a little bit out of turn here, but just because I do have that experience with that episode with Matt. Once the tube chassis is all designed in CAD, one of the nice aspects with technology these days is that all of the tubes to then construct it can be sensibly bent and even notched. So it takes a lot of that human element out of errors creeping in from looking at a 3D model or the CAD drawings and then actually having to hand bend all of these. From what I understand well actually we've had first hand experience in the shop as well it does just like almost clip together like a jigsaw puzzle, albeit some fixtures and jigs need to be made up to hold these things in the right location. Moving back to the engine, so this time a Toyota engine. Great to hear. The 3SGTE. What was that? Always the one that was planned for this. Were there any other options on the table? I'm guessing it's quite a short engine bay as well, which might have driven some of your options.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, my idea was to try to keep it as light as possible with the tube chassis structure and just, I basically wanted this truck to be after building the Supra or being halfway through the build on a Supra. So I was like, well, I want to do a tube chassis for a Supra, but we couldn't because that's just the way that was going. So I wanted to do it for another project and why not do it for the step? So I wanted to try to do that as light as possible as well. So I had to stay four cylinder and I wanted to run one of Steph's motors, but it just didn't work out budget wise, so we ended up just going our own road. I found a builder down in Florida who drag races those 3S motors and he seemed like a good fit, so called him up and started collecting parts and shipping them out to him for the build. My initial thought was to do the beams head because you have cam control and it's a lot newer than this NA head that I have from 86 Celica. But it was kind of defeating the purpose of the build and the way it was, kind of being more heritage style in old school with some new school flare like a tube chassis. So we ended up going with the old NA head because those valve covers just look absolutely phenomenal in the engine bay. It definitely hurt me on the power band in the end, but….

Speaker 2:

Yeah, it does look period correct though. Yeah yeah, what sort of power did you end up with?

Speaker 1:

So we ended up doing 515 at the wheels at 26 psi on a Garrett G30 770, so it's a bit of a smaller turbo. So it's okay. It's not meant to be this crazy thing. It's super light and when I went and took it out for the first time it was actually so fast and drift that I just needed smaller tires on it and I had 275, 40, 18s on it and I need to think I need to go into a 255 just to give myself some window room for a setup on it. So the 500 horsepower is perfect for the setup.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, okay, and again, you're not competing with this, so it's not a case of trying to outdo everyone else, is it? It's just an exhibition vehicle.

Speaker 1:

Exactly, it's just strictly exhibition and to do demo events like the grid life events here in the States, and just to be able to have a good time with and take to some local stuff and, yeah, just have a blast and something different.

Speaker 2:

So, with such a diverse range of cars in your garage, what's your favorite?

Speaker 1:

I would say the Formula Super definitely has my vote just because of that always had been such a long road to a passion project that that thing became. I mean having that jet engine. It just it kills me because I want it to be so much faster. And then you just see how much more money you have to spend on it to make it go faster and then a small window of time that you actually get to drive the thing on track and then the rebuild cost of the motor down the road and all of those things. So it's tough to balance that out where I know when a stout is fully ready for a full track day with no issues and we worked through a couple bugs when that day happens that thing is going to be. I'm going to have so much fun driving that thing nonstop. It's a regular style motor that you can just fire up without heating up, pre-heating beforehand and all of that, and just be able to go have some fun.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, that's something we've done. It really touch on with that, judd V10. You can't sort of start it from cold. It's a bit of a process to go through, like a an F1 engine. You actually have to preheat the. Are you preheating the oil and the water?

Speaker 1:

We are. Yeah, you technically don't have to preheat the oil we like to, just because why not? It helps get the oil temps up to 10 before hitting the track and it gives you less run time, because if you just heat the water you can fire it up and then you've got to wait for the oil temp to come up before you can even really start ripping it around track anyways. So the oil temp preheating just negates the amount of idle time that you put on the engine.

Speaker 2:

And probably just touch on another urban myth that keeps coming up, and we've debunked this one a couple of times with actual engine builders who worked in F1, but everyone thought they thought that a F1 engine will not turn over when it's at room temperature. The reality is that, yes, it will, but you definitely wouldn't want to start it. The clearances inside are just incredibly tight, so that's why it needs to be preheated to get the clearances at their desired operating range. But technically it will turn over, so I just wanted to get that in there. Alright, ryan, we'll move towards wrapping this thing up, and we've got the same three questions we ask all of our guests, and the first of those is what's next in the future for you? More professional drifting, more car builds coming our way?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, another two seasons of Formula Drift, for sure, and then I'll kind of see what happens from that point. And then I just started a new project with Toyota and Mobile One for a SEMA 2024. It'll be something completely different platform wise for me, but still obviously in a Toyota wheelhouse. I'm excited. It's going to be something super fresh and new and different that'll be extremely fun to drive, I have no doubt.

Speaker 2:

Well, look forward to seeing what that is, because none of your projects so far have disappointed. So, yeah, look forward to that. In terms of the drifting another two seasons I think what's that going to be like 23, 24 years or something. I don't know, but it's a long time. Are you still as passionate about it? Are you still getting the same level of enjoyment, or has it sort of become a bit of a job after so long?

Speaker 1:

I do. I mean, there's back in a day. It's like anytime you got to drive your car was just like pure bliss where now there's definitely a certain, there's more of a certain situation where I have those moments and there are more moments than they are like anytime I hop in the car. I think Formula Drift creates a lot of pressure to perform and this is all stuff I put on my own shoulders and just the way I am. You're out there to drive the absolute best that you can and I try to live up to my skill set as best as possible, and that creates a lot of pressure that I put on myself. So, as Formula Drift fun for me, I would say yes, when you step on the podium and you drink some champagne, it was all worth it. But when you have more of a year, like I have had this year, when we haven't had any champagne yet and we only have one event left, that it's been a little bit tougher to enjoy. But when you think about what you're actually doing and you're driving this 1000 horsepower four cylinder at one of the biggest top levels of the sport against some of the best drivers in the world, it's pretty damn cool. So you just got to kind of sit back and look at the big picture sometimes, yeah, why you're doing this and where you started and all of that. But I still yes, I still love it. Even if I do retire or when I do retire from pro competition like Formula Drift, I'm still going to be driving. There's no way I've come this far in my motorsport career and I'm just stopped competing and that means I stopped doing car stuff. There's no way. It's just, it's who I am and it's my livelihood and will be in my life for the rest of my life. There's no doubt.

Speaker 2:

Have you given some thought to what that might look like beyond professional drifting?

Speaker 1:

Honestly, I spent a lot of this year trying to figure out like, hmm, you know what would I do, and I think a lot of that came from having my son, who's now a year and a half and you know, just because travel gets a little bit more difficult and life in general, there's a lot more to figure out and then just wanting to be home more as well. So it's the first time I ever thought about it. Have I come up with a good idea? No, there's going to be something with cars, for sure.

Speaker 2:

Okay. Is there any advice you'd give to a younger version of yourself to help reach where you've got to in your career faster or maybe potentially avoid some pitfalls or problems you've come across during a journey?

Speaker 1:

I would have said take some courses in business, some school classes. Yeah, that would have excelled Maybe not excelled my career, but maybe understood deal points and how to negotiate a little bit better.

Speaker 2:

Sure, yeah, I've said this a few times in relation to people who are more, are good at something like, let's say, fabrication in their startup business and, you know, quickly realise that while they're great at that particular element of what they do, there's all of this business side that they just had no clue about and normally you spend about half your time doing what you're good at and the rest of the time you're actually doing just the hard work of a business. So, yeah, I think that is a really good tip just having some understanding of what operating a business looks like, how to read the numbers and keep everything sort of operating in a float. So, yeah, good advice there. Question, ryan if people want to follow you see what you're up to, have a look at some of these builds, how they're best to do so. What are your social media accounts that they need to be following?

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so it's pretty much at Ryan Turk for everything Instagram, YouTube, Facebook and TikTok even all night on there. Very much.

Speaker 2:

Alright. Well, those are going to be nice and easy to find. Always pleasant when you manage to collect the full set without having to have the at Ryan Turk 287 or something account for one. But we'll put, as usual, links to those accounts in the show notes to make it super easy for people to find. Look, ryan, pleasure having you on the podcast. Great to get some more in depth insight into those builds. Certainly look forward to seeing what you've got in store for us at SEMA next year and wish you all the best for the last round of Formula Drift and hopefully you can make it onto the podium.

Speaker 1:

We're hoping so. Appreciate it, Andrea. I'm a big fan of the show and it's been awesome talking to you, so thank you.

Speaker 2:

If you enjoyed this episode of Tune In with Ryan, we'd love it if you could drop a review on your chosen podcasting platform. These reviews really help us to grow our audience and that in turn, helps us to continue to get more high quality guests To say thanks. Each week, we'll be picking a random reviewer and sending them out an HPA t-shirt free of charge, anywhere in the world. This is also a great place to ask any questions you might have and I'll do my best to answer them if your review gets picked. So this week, a big shout out to JC Goodchap from Australia, who has said engine building, tuning 101, go to Building my turbo on the CRX Sleeper. This podcast has been invaluable plenty of relatable, easy to follow information, both here and on their online training platform for budget garage races like me. Well, thanks for the kind words and I'm glad to hear that you're managing to put the information to use on your own project build. If you get in touch with your t-shirt sides and shipping details, we'll get a fresh tea shipped straight out to you, alright, that concludes our interview and before we sign off, I just wanted to mention for anyone who's been perhaps hiding under a rock and hasn't heard of High Performance Academy before. We are an online training school and we specialise in teaching a range of performance automotive topics, everything from engine tuning and engine building through to wiring, car suspension and wheel alignment, data analysis and race driver education. Now, remember, you've got that coupon code. You can use podcast 75 at the checkout to get $75 off the purchase of your first course. You'll find our full course list at hpacademycom. Forward slash courses. Important to mention that when you purchase a course from us, that course is yours for life as well. It never expires. You can rewatch the course as many times as you like, whenever you like. The purchase of a course will also give you three months of access to our gold membership. It gives you access to our private members only forum, which is the perfect place to get answers to your specific questions. You'll also get access to our regular weekly members webinars, which is where we touch on a particular topic in the performance automotive realm. We dive into that topic for about an hour. If you can watch live, you can ask questions and get answers in real time. If the time zones don't work for you, that's fine too. You're going to get access as a gold member to our previous webinar archive. We've got close to 300 hours of existing content in that archive. It is an absolute gold mine. So remember that coupon code podcast75,. Check out our course list at hpacademycom. Forward slash courses.

Ryan Turck
Motocross to Drifting
From Grassroots to Professional Drifting
Sponsorship and Choosing a Drift Car
Finding Skilled Fabricators for Car Builds
The Evolution and Challenges of Drifting
Improve Judging and Car Setup in Drifting
GR Corolla as a Drift Car
Ferrari Engine Built on Toyota
Remote Tuning and Building Formula Supra
Drive by Wire and Grip Driving
Creating a Custom Tube Chassis Truck
Passion and Future Plans in Drift
Online Performance Automotive Training and Membership