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Team Crawford Scores Two Podium Finishes at VIR Time Attack Finale

(October, 13 2008)
The Crawford Performance Orange 2008 WRX STI, piloted by professional driver Eiji “Tarzan” Yamada, placed 2nd in Unlimited AWD at GT Live’s Redline Time Attack Season Finale held at Virginia International Raceway (VIR), Oct 3-5. What made this finale more impressive was that Team Crawford was in the position to help Dave Mirra, BMX legend and Monster Energy rally driver, with his new 2008 STI and two Time Attack competitors, James Elterman of Team Takata and Luke Russell of Top Speed. Both of which took first place in their class. Ultimately it was a fantastic way to way to end the 2008 Red Line Time Attack Series for Crawford Performance and for Subaru.




The journey began six days prior to the event when Owner, Quirt Crawford, decided to make the 2600 mile trip from Oceanside California to Alton, Virginia. The Team decided to get to the track early in the week, not just for set-up purposes but to meet up with Dave Mirra, BMX guru and Monster Energy rally driver. Dave made the 3 hour drive from Greenville North Carolina just to have Crawford personally install a Crawford Stage Two power package to his new 2008 STI. Once up and running Dave had to head back home. It wasn’t long afterwards before he rang up the team, using his hands-free device of course, and raved about the STI’s new unleashed power, “I’m so stoked! This Subie has power everywhere! And it’s so smooth and still street-able. Thanks for helping me out.” No problem Dave, we were glad we could help. And that sentiment set the mantra for the weekend, helping other Subaru owners & competitors.


The Crawford support rolled right into Friday. Thirty-nine Time Attack competitors coupled with the Grand-Am KONI Challenge cars and the Skip Barber cars were all vying for track time. Most teams including Crawford Performance were trying to gather as much info as possible for chassis and engine management set-up. This was especially difficult for Team Crawford as this was the team’s first time to VIR and it was the inaugural run for their new plug-n-play MoTeC engine management system and center differential controller. As luck would have it, Phoenix ICY (Subaru Road Race team) was competing in the Grand-Am KONI Challenge, and they shared few VIR chassis pointers with Team Crawford. This freed up time for Crawford to focus on the new MoTeC ECU and SDC.




While Crawford focused on the Orange 2008 STI, other teams were doing the same; making their laps and pitting, playing with tire pressures, tweaking motors and suspension. Team Crawford wasn’t the only team making adjustments. One of the Time Attack competitors, Top Speed, seemed to be having issues with their oil catch can system. Their current set-up had them worried about staying competitive throughout the weekend. Luckily Team Crawford had an extra Crawford Air/Oil Separator on hand. In the spirit of sportsmanship we donated the Separator to the Top Speed team




***Before***



. ***After***

During Fridays practice, Crawford’s unlimited car was the fastest car on the track, including all the Grand-Am KONI Challenge cars as well as the Skip Barber cars. After the time attack on Saturday, we found ourselves in second place behind the Top Speed car. We knew it would be hard to out perform the Top Speed car because of the 400 pound deficit between our cars, so Sunday morning the team decided to add another 100WHP along with a new set of Hoosier tires for a shot at the overall win.

Spirits were high as the Orange Crawford STI clocked its fastest time of the weekend on the first of three timed laps. Things were certainly looking good. However, during the second lap, just after the tires were up to their optimal temperature, there was a gear box issue that resulted in the engine over revving to 9826 RPM. Tarzan said the second lap was bound to be at least one second quicker than the first lap. Alas, the over rev bent most of the intake valves which slowed the car down considerably. Eventually, Top Speed ended up edging (1:58.540) out the Orange Crawford 2008 STI (1:58.929) in the final round to take 1st place in Unlimited AWD. Congratulations are in order to the Top Speed team for a great 2008 season.



* 1st place Unlimited AWD, 1:58.540, Driver Luke Russell

Speaking of finishing first, on the final day James Elterman, Team Takata, was looking to solidify himself and his Subaru as the Modified AWD series champion. All looked well, until an unfortunate brake failure forced James off course an into a tire wall. Fortunately James was not hurt, and the Takata Subaru suffered only minor damage, but it was clear that the Subaru was no longer race worthy.




Keeping with the weekend’s mantra, Crawford discussed the details with the Red Line Organizers and offered the Blue Stage 2 Crawford 2008 STI so that James could finish the event and hopefully win the 2008 Modified AWD Championship. The only question was if the Blue Stage 2 Crawford STI was good enough to help James do the job at hand. In the end James ran a 2:23.930 and his nearest competitor ran a 2:30.942. That 1st place victory (second 1st place win for the Crawford Blue 2008 STI) was enough to secure the points James needed to become the seasons’ Modified AWD Champion.



* 1st place Modified AWD Champion, 2:23.930, Driver James Elterman

Ultimately, the inaugural trip to Virginia was a success. Yes the 5750 mile round trip was a long haul and yes the Orange 2008 Crawford STI did not win the Championship, and yes there was a lot of sweat, frustration, bruises, and long hours put into our fledgling program. But, when we stand back we notice the real reason why we do this to ourselves. It’s not just the thrill of completion, the nice little trophy’s you can take home to shelve, the magazines or the TV spots. Rather it’s the camaraderie & sharing a passion with other people while all the while knowing that your efforts helped other’s to be either happy , successful, or both. There is that intrinsic value that some trophies just can’t capture.



*2nd Place Unlimited AWD, 1:58.929, Driver Tarzan Yamada

Long live the Fraternity of STI!
Images: Crawford Performance
HD Video: Crawford Performance TV

Special Thanks
- Kumho and Hoosier tires for allowing us to do back-to-back tire testing at VIR. Both tires worked extremely well.
- Kumho and ENKEI for providing support on the Blue STI. The Subaru has won two TA events with these tires and wheels.

Crawford Skunk Works Partners
Subaru of America, Inc.
TEIN USA
NGK Spark Plugs

Crawford Skunk Works Supporters
Brembo
ENKEI
JE Pistons
MoTeC
MOTUL
Garrett Turbos
RECARO
The DriveShaft Shop
VP FUEL

Crawford Performance
4168 Avenida De La Plata Ste 116
Oceanside, CA 92056
760-631-2927

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GT Live
Described as an "interactive motorsports festival," GT LIVE, is an event designed for the young enthusiast of Japanese "tuner cars" that combines drifting, racing, karting, car shows and music. What makes it most unique is that fans not only spectate, they can actually participate in much of the action.
 

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Great job, way to represent!
 

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Great Job team Crawford, sorry to hear about the over-rev, but I guess thats just what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the kind words guys! It’s a pleasure to support such a great community and we hope to step it up for 2009.

The wheels are Volk ce28 in 18” by 9.5”
 

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There are teams that are out to win ...

There are teams that do win ...

There are teams that, spiritually, typify what it is to be a leader, best-of-industry ...

Hats off to Crawford.
 

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First, congratulations are in order. Fantastic job especially in a "solemn" street car that "sucks". Nice to see bringing the true potential out of the 08.

Second, forgive me for not knowing, but do you have a sequential in the orange car? I can't think of any other possible reason that a gearbox would cause the engine to over-rev uless it was driver error (said lightly against the skilled/crazy Tarzan).
 
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