So I got some ‘splainin to do!

I apologize for the lack of updates, as we have been ever-so-busy! With two different turbo setups for two track events back to back, alongside the dyno deciding it needed a vacation, along with a team member taking a vacation as well…I’ll spare the emotions and just say time was spent taking your phone calls, while answering e-mails, while editing photos, alongside taking care of the immediate customers at the shop.

So I know I have some things to keep you all caught up, so that everyone can be “in the loop” with the action going on here.

I’ll just tease you all with a photo…or two…or many if you check out the latest additions to the galleries. 😉


In typical HB Speed fashion, the guys are once again, back to their normal Time Attack standards.

If the late-night antics of both Round 1 and Round 3 weren’t clear enough to you, then Round 4 should definitely clear the cobwebs! What could they possibly be planning just 11 days prior to Round 4 at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California?

The pictures will do the talking, and the questions will follow:

Redline Time Attack: Round 3 Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS, NV – Round 3 of the Redline Time Attack Series was held at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The weekend began early for HB Speed as they were getting parts installed on their 2008 Mitsubishi Evolution X. Swapping out Cosworth MX1 camshafts for GSC Stage 2 Cams and Cosworth Valve Springs, Jon Drenas was simply looking to increase the RPM range and have more top end power. Now if only that was as easy as it sounds.

Before reassembling the heads, the team checked for valve clearance and the exhaust side didn’t seem to sit well. Not having the appropriately sized cam buckets lead to a slight improvisation. The team had a wide assortment of tools and equipment at their shop, in particular, a lathe. The big buckets were attached, and millimeter by millimeter, the team got the right sized clearance that they needed.

Having improvised and hurrying to fix their clogged catalytic converter at the event in Buttonwillow, the team went with two MilSpec 100cel cats. Changing things up a bit from a single tip, single cat axle back, they decided that two cats are better than one! Definitely a noticeable change in exhaust note, the car was strapped back onto the dyno and it was time to tune the car and make some power. At 511whp and 400ftlb of torque, the car was ready to scream and make its mark on the track!

The team also addressed another important issue with the car, its weight. Opting for two Sparco Evo seats, rails, sliders, and harnesses, driver Jon Drenas and co-driver Domo would no longer flop around while out on the track.

Just like the drive up to Buttonwillow, the drive up to Las Vegas was no different. No, a splitter mount didn’t fall off, but rather an annoying exhaust leak from a blown exhaust gasket drove everyone insane. Thanks to RobiSpec and the guys at FXMD, we were able to borrow some tools and get the car on jack stands to repair that issue at the new FXMD shop.

After checking in and making our way through the maze known as the pits, we found a decent spot and set up our pit area. The splitter was attached, and the car was prepped for tech. Low and behold, the car seemed to have somehow lowered itself from the last event, to now. The driver’s side front end needed to be raised to clear the bar. Knowing what had to be done, the car went out for a practice session, as tech inspection was important only during the timed sessions for Sunday. Driver Jon Drenas needed to get accustomed to the track, as it was his first time out. Following Clint Boisdeau in the Street Class FWD Mini Cooper, Jon was able to find the line and drop lap times. Unfortunately, the tires that were on the car were soaked up in slippery tire shine, and Jon somehow found himself in the Street Tire AWD Drift class. Thankfully, the team brought along an extra set of Yokohama AD08 tires that they were able to mount onto the car, thanks to the Hankook guys.

With the new tires mounted, Jon went out for a second practice session. Things seemed to have been going fine, until the end of the back straight where Jon was found putting the Evo X’s rally height to use once again. Unlike the time at Buttonwillow, the car suffered a bit of front end damage from the gravel and lost the front splitter. Jon hobbled the car back into the pit area, and the team went to work to try and trouble-shoot a splitter situation. Jon seemed a bit down, but the optimistic pit crew went to work and with the help of Kenny Lee and his 2007 STi, they managed to make use of the APR splitter and get it on the Evo.

Race day is here, and the team knew exactly what needed to be done to fine tune the Evo. The front splitter was re-enforced with Gorilla Tape to eliminate the gaps in between the bumper and splitter. With everything secured and taped up, and the rear end alignment fixed, the car was running smooth. Slapping on the new axleback with the two MilSpec cats, the car screamed down the front straight with 30 pounds of boost pushing the car to over 140mph!

With the likes of Steve Ruiz and the 2008 StopTech Evo X, Cameron Benner and the Cobb Tuning Motorsports 2006 STi, Thomas Smith and his 2005 STi, and 2009 Champion Matt Dennison and his 2006 Evo IX, the competition was looking fierce. With Steve Ruiz having turned in times of 1:47.XXX, and Cameron Benner clocking in times of 1:49.XXX during Saturday’s practice sessions, it was already some tough competition for Jon. As time went on, Jon was able to knock off valuable seconds from his initial clocked times of 1:58.421, down to a speedy 1:50.627. Unfortunately, as time went on, the track conditions were getting more and more deteriorated with rocks and dirt kicked up from the other cars in other sessions.

With the last time session completed, Jon was less than seven tenths of a second shy of the podium with a 1:49.820. Finishing 1st in the Street Tire AWD Class was Steve Ruiz with a 1:47.491, 2nd place went to Cameron Benner with a 1:48.065, and 3rd place to Thomas Smith with a 1:49.181. It was a tough event, but the experience gained will be taken and HB Speed is already preparing for Round 4 at the Auto Club Speedway!

HB Speed would like to thank CBRD SpeedFactory, KW Suspension, RobiSpec, Deatschwerks, Yokohama Tire, Forced Performance, Cobb Tuning, GSC Cams, Sparco USA, Kenny Lee for all the help and support!

Prepping for RTA: Round 3

Did you all know that Round Three of the Redline Time Attack series was THIS weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway? Because we did! Here’s proof!

Redline Time Attack 2010 Season Opener

BUTTONWILLOW, CA – The season opener of the Redline Time Attack series, held at Buttonwillow Raceway Park, kicked off to a very eventful weekend! With a test and tune session held on Friday, practice sessions held all day Saturday, and two rounds of practice on Sunday, crews had their hands busy making adjustments to their vehicles to make the quickest times.

HB Speed’s Jon Drenas and Danny Heng were still unsure if the team would compete as the 2008 Mitsubishi Evolution X was still strapped onto the dyno finishing up a tune on Thursday night! Trying to squeeze every little bit of additional power from their Forced Performance “Red” turbo-charger, the team swapped out the stock exhaust manifold with a tubular exhaust manifold from CBRD Speed Factory and also made the switch to Deatschwerks 1500cc injectors! Wrapping the tune up that night, the decision was made to run in the season opener early Friday morning via text message.

Now that the decision was made to run, the team had to make sure the car would comply to the new rule changes made to the Redline Time Attack Street Tire Class rules. The first pressing issue: ride height. The lowest part of the car had to clear a 3.5 inch bar. Thankfully, the team had a few 2×4’s sitting around the shop which was used as their reference point. As it stood, the Evo’s front end would not clear this minimum height, and the exhaust flanges would need to be fastened and secured as they dipped below the mark.

With the help of MODE Racing’s Billy Brooks, the team was able to raise the car, re-align the suspension, and lift the exhaust system in order to successfully pass a 2×4 bar underneath the car. It was now time for the team to pack their bags, roll a 55-gallon drum of E85 onto a mini-trailer, and make the caravan drive up to Buttonwillow. However, during the drive up (yes we DRIVE the car to the events), the HB Speed Evo X lost a splitter mount along the highway, forcing the team to think about how to resolve that issue over the course of the weekend ahead.

Having brainstormed throughout the night, the team made their way over to the track and checked into a pit. Garaged next to StopTech and RobiSpec, the team was quickly greeted with some warm smiles and familiar faces.

Thanks to COBB Tuning Motorsports and their large trailer, Jon was able to fabricate another splitter mount to replace the mount that fell off. With the splitter installed, canards secured, the team made their way over to the Redline Time Attack trailer to wait in line and get the car inspected. The car weighed in at 3,450lbs and immediately failed the inspection. The front splitter nuts and bolts prevented the metal bar from successfully sliding underneath the front end of the car. Danny Heng made a dash back over to the pit and grabbed a few wrenches in an attempt to tighten the nuts and bolts of the front splitter and regain some ground clearance. It seems the last chance effort paid off, and the bar successfully cleared the front, middle, and rear of the car! However, the car failed inspection yet again, as the APR Wing did not meet the standards set by Redline Time Attack. The car made its way back to the pits, and work began to fix the issue. Billy Brooks came to the rescue yet again to re-drill new holes into the fins of the wing, now making the car pass tech inspection.

With the wing now adjusted, the car made its way back over to tech inspection and finally received the pass. Practice sessions were already underway, and the team felt the car should at least have some time on the track to make sure any other adjustments wouldn’t be necessary. Jon lapped around Buttonwillow Raceway, with Domo riding in the passenger seat, and Danny Heng recording lap times, the team felt that the car was fine and no adjustments would be needed. Finally, a break! Saturday’s practice sessions were now over, and it was time to head back over to the motel.

Sunday morning’s festivities meant driver’s meetings, and two practice sessions before the actual Time Attack. Jon took the car out initially, hoping to get a better feel on the track and shave off some much needed time. Turns out with a slight adjustment by turning off the “ASC Nanny”, the car handled much better and was more responsive around the track. Clinching a 2nd place qualifying time, the team made their way back into the pits to remove the MXP muffler and install their cat-pipe to be compliant to race regulations.

Thanks to Enthusiast AWD Class driver Shannon Lew, HB Speed was able to get a little bit more grip by going to a 255 wide Advan AD08 Tire, instead of their 245 wide AD08. Jon was underway bringing in a 2-minute lap time. Good, but could have been better. The car seemed to only boost 24-25psi, and with the cat-pipe being the only change, the problem was easily diagnosed by the pit crew of two. With less than two hours away from the second and final Time Attack session, the team scurried through the pits searching for a new catalytic converter to swap into their fouled cat-pipe. Thanks to the help of 7’s Only, a local shop located on the track, Jon was able to weld on the new (smaller more restrictive) cat, re-install the cat pipe, and get the car back out onto the second and final session.

Knowing that there was a significant power loss from the cat pipe, Jon  went for it. The first lap bringing in a 1:58.1, we were already underway with a very competitive race against the clock. Jon decided the new ride height could easily handle a little dirt/rally action during the third lap while passing COBB Tuning’s Cameron Benner, and despite kicking up a dust cloud and having his teammates skip a few heart beats,  pulled away from the cloud and still managed to bring in a lap time of 1:59.8! Exciting racing, capped off by an exciting weekend! HB Speed and Jon  secured the lap time of 1:581 and used that to a 2nd place Street Tire AWD finish!

Steven Ruiz, driver of the StopTech Mitsubishi Evo X placed 1st with a time of 1:57.5 and Cameron Benner, driver of the Cobb Tuning Motorsports Subaru STi placed 3rd with a time of 1:58.9.

HB Speed would like to thank CBRD Speedfactory, KW Suspension, RobiSpec, Deatschwerks, Yokohama Tire, Forced Performance, and Cobb Tuning, and most of all Shannon and Lilly for allowing Jon to race this weekend and Kick some butt!