The shop itself is now in the final stages of fit out. Housing a clothing/merchandise outlet at one end, in the middle a barbershop, plus coffee shop at the other end. Further along behind some big roller doors is where the bike building happens.
We caught up with Ben Arnold over the weekend to see how preparations are going for this year 2017 World Time Attack Challenge, with only a couple of days to go before sticky semi slicks are put to pavement around Sydney Motorsport Park he says that he’s confident in the cars after testing last Friday at Winton Motor Raceway and can’t wait to get out there and beat his previous time of 1:40.15.
Check out the video by JL Media Below.
This year Roger Arnold, Ben’s father will be driving his car- The Ex-Gibson Motorsport R32 and Ben will be comfortably behind the wheel of his R33 GTR. Both packing over 500kw at all four paws it should make for some comparable times between the two.
Rivalry between the two is strong. Father and Son comparing lap times at local club sprint days every stint they do together, and often high on the time tables.
The r32 GTR has a 3.2L Nitto Stroked rb30 with a 26 head, bolted to the side are twin -10 Garret Turbos pushing 16psi to make 550awkw.
The job of swapping cogs goes to a 6 Speed r34 Getrag gearbox and front and rear diffs are R34 GTR Items. The front diff being changed not so long ago from the original R32 set to R34 after suffering catastrophic failure. All wheel Drive is being handled now by a ETS Pro unit.
The R33 is powered by a 2.8L Crower stroked RB26. A single Garret GTX35 Turbo has been chosen to produce 22psi, making 500awkw. Gearbox gets a PPG straight cut, dog box gear set to push it round the track. The All wheel Drive is controlled by a Do-Luck controller for this one.
Both cars get custom front Lips to abide with the Clubsprint rule that no more than 50mm over hang is aloud from additional spoilers, APR Performance rear wings. Both run Pump E85 and custom 4inch exhaust systems.
If you see Ben and Rodger around the paddock this year be sure to say Hello! I will have a wrap up post after Time Attach challenge so stay tuned after the event!
This year’s May Issue of Performance BMW published the photos of Les’s M3R we took Mid 2016! We teamed up with Chris Nicholls of P1 Race Photography who supplied the words and connections to make this happen.
Having known Les for a little over a year and a half now, it wasn’t till I asked Chris for some input on a track photo of his car did I realize how rare it really was. You know, not being educated in the world of bimmers' I was a bit ignorant to the fact. Do’h! Lesson learned and happy coincidence aside check it out!
Sometimes it's good to do a shoot where you can stuff around and have a joke while you try different things and hone the “craft” side of photography. Learning and developing different styles of creating images is something I really thirst for, and it’s made so much easier when you have friends that have a good understanding and empathy for what you're trying to achieve.
Jake’s S13 has undergone big changes over the last year-and-a-bit, starting out as a road registered drift car when Jake acquired it with an Sr20 Heart. Now, fast forward 3 years and it’s got an LS1 heart and T56 gearbox re-purposed from a VY SS Ute and 18x10 Work gt5 +18 wheels sitting underneath +25mm front fenders + 45mm rear fenders (Viva Garage's Rocket Bunny copies), making it a formidable grip weapon.
I arrived at Jake’s late afternoon with a loose plan, knowing more of the hill that his shed-turned-workshop sits on has been dug out to accommodate extra undercover shed area in the months to come, thus leaving a flat dirt area with a rock face background.
After a quick dry down, we positioned the car accordingly and got to work, I was interested to see how his pressure pack paint job (it’s a race car after all) would stand up against the off-camera flash, but those fears were soon put to rest as I started lighting different angles of the car.
While it wasn’t a particularly amazing sunset, it was still worth capturing the last light and the hint of colour it produced.
With the sun now safely gone, we could produce more contrast between the flash and background of the car. Note to self: Race slicks and mud don’t go well together…
One of the goals when doing the engine swap was to make it sit back as far as possible in the engine bay, this required modifying some polyurethane engine mounts to suit. The exhaust fab' work and tune was done locally by LS Engineering, giving the LS a raspy, loud note.
Inside, as you can imagine, is all business. A sturdy Nardi steering wheel and Velo race seat make the pilot comfortable during those flying laps and a hydraulic handbrake still in arm's reach if the wish to drift ever becomes too great.
I must admit, doing interior photos is one of the more challenging aspects of doing automotive photography. Normally I’m able to bounce light off the roof lining in the back seat to give a defused, even lighting effect and other times it takes a few goes to find what will work. But it is always rewarding conquering the different styles of interiors in a diverse range of cars.
The door cards, replaced with aluminum and a simplistic single fold are starting to collect stickers, including Jakes own business, JL Media. If you have any more stickers, let him know!
All the photos at this point were filling time until it got dark enough to do something I’ve been slowly exploring over the past year. With summer now safely behind us, it was time to play with fire again.
Roughly, this is done is by attaching rope to a pole, soaking it in slow burning fuel, then igniting it. The type of fuel/rope is important so that it doesn’t have an odor when it burns, so smelling like molten chemicals or fuel is never an issue. The shutter on the camera it set to open for 30sec as I walk around the subject “painting” the burning light on the camera's sensor and using that light to illuminate the car at the same time.
After another couple of exposures trying different patterns, we hit the jackpot. An undulating sea of fire, whipping and curving, brazenly engulfing the S13 (figuratively of course).
And lastly, a more simplistic approach, but just as effective!
Engine vy ss ute
1.5 way lsd 4.08 gears
Wheels are work gt5 18x10 +18 offset
Gk tech arms and knuckles
Bc br Coilovers
Tail shaft by EMA
Power steering by Rapid
Exhaust and Tune by LS engineering
Homemade gearbox mount and reverse throw clutch setup
Cam and cylinder head work coming soon with a goal of 280rwkw
Words & Photos: Luke Hunter Edited: Leigh Rizzato
Saturday morning of 21st January, I had the privilege of picking up a 2016 5.0L V8 Mustang Convertible thanks to Blacklocks Wodonga. This had been in the works for quite some time but actually getting hold of a pony car seemed to be much, much harder than I had originally imagined. At first I was told only an ecoboost 4 cylinder would be the most likely one they would hand me the keys for.
Six months had passed and after trying to book in a time that suited all parties I had all but given up - that was until I got a text saying that this Ruby Red example had come up and it had the V8 option that was most desired. I jumped at the chance! Wouldn’t you?
After picking up the very “in your face” display of Americana, first stop was the car wash, washing off any impurities that might make post-production a bit easier on my behalf, and besides, the best way to become acquainted with the lines and design of a car is to put your hands over every inch of it. I enlisted a good friend and car enthusiast Leigh to come along for the ride so I could capture some of the shots I had lined up in my head.
So washed and fueled we headed off to Beechworth for an early lunch. This time of year it’s full of the hustle and bustle of the tourist trade and the Ruby Red aggressive styling was sure to turn a few heads.
We found a quiet spot right in the middle of town behind the old court house in the botanical gardens, ate lunch then took a few quick snaps. I never took any photos with the top up, the lines of the car just somehow don’t suit it like most convertibles in my opinion.
The front end had a very “Get out of my way” attitude about it that I liked a lot.
The engine bay was full of the twin DOHC 5.0L Coyote engine that Ford created to compete with the GM 6.2 LS3 and the Chrysler 6.4L Hemi ESF. Making about the same power but in a smaller capacity. Ford had tuned the exhaust so that everyone in a 2-block radius knows you have a V8 under the hood, turning lots of heads and even causing over-exited spectators to yell at us to give it some Jandel, and how could I not oblige? The main street filled with V8 rumble.
We moved on to the old asylum. This created a great backdrop for a few photos, having used this site before in Autumn (See Link Rhys Quirk's STi Here) I decided to use another part of the grounds for the photos. It’s such a big place and there are still lots of different backgrounds to play with.
Midday is hardly the most ideal time of day for any kind of photos but with the help of a couple of flashes I brought the cars stunning “Ruby Red” colour out.
The interior was surprisingly comfortable, the seats hugging and holding me in place just nicely.
I had a brief play with all the custom settings. 3 settings of tune for the car: Snow/wet, Sport and Track mode last of which took away traction control. There were also individual identical settings for the steering feel. We spent most of the time in all sport modes. Also had “Flappy Paddles” and although it felt a bit PlayStation I liked them (Don’t tell Clarkson), but maybe that’s just my generation. The only thing I could fault with them is that they were attached to the steering wheel, so changing gear mid corner so you could power-out was a little bit hard.
From here we went for a scoot out past Stanley and the great twisty bit of road that connects Stanley to the Myrtleford-Yackandandah Road to see what it’s like in the twisties. The immediate thing you notice when you start to drive this car is how touchy the Brembo’s are, the first time you rest your foot on them you find yourself re-adjusting yourself back in your seat. Not a hassle though and you do get used to them very quickly.
Moving onto performance of the 5.0L, in a straight line it feels a little lackluster to me, Doing the ol’ throttle mash in sports mode takes a moment to build up revs and it’s not until you’re at the 4000rpm+ stage does it feel like you really get moving. In Paddle shift mode, you can choose the gear a whole lot better and get more of a rise out of the v8. The package came together like a well rehearsed marching band once I started throwing it though some nice corners, it completely felt at home and even had me questioning if I even wanted a manual gearbox as the 6 speed auto changed gears like I think a gearbox should: precise and with minimal lag from the moment you tap the shift paddle. It should be illegal how much fun it was (and probably is).
Summarizing, I’d say it’s a great car no matter what you wanted to do with it. It was awfully easy to cruise around in, the suspension not too harsh that you’d get sick of it. It’s a spacious interior and not at all cramped in the front seats. You could put people in the back seat but it might not be the most comfortable for them but that’s not what this car is about. It would be a great weekend warrior if you wanted to do the odd club track day, in fact, in the dash settings it has its own G meter as well as lap timer under a “Track Accessories” Menu function.
Thanks you to BlackLocks Wodonga & Mitch Warnock for lending us Ruby for the day, also a big thank you to Leigh Rizzato for coming along for the ride, I hope it wasn’t too much of a chore. And lastly Thank you if you have read this far! Hopefully we can get some more cars in the future to take for a drive and see what they are like, Post in the Facebook comments what you would like to see!
It had been a long time between dirt events for the Albury Wodonga and District Car Club, the rain thwarting any and all efforts to hold events at the traditional venue, Villa Grove. That was until Jake Lucas put his hand up to hold an event on his land at Wooragee, just 15min drive out the Beechworth road from Wodonga.
The morning’s schedule consisted of Motorkhana on the grass near the entrance to the property in the morning, then Kanacross on the dirt track further down the hill in the afternoon. It became a struggle for anyone to get grip on the surface for the Motorkhnana, rendering any big-power cars useless if you couldn’t stay off the throttle. The alternative was just planting it, hoping the car would somehow find grip through wheel speed. Through sustained use, competitors eventually dug through the grass into the marginally gripper dirt – cars suited to rally conditions had a distinct advantage from this point onward.
14-year-old Louise Gouveia took to the wheel of the Datsun shared with her father to rip up the dirt.
A few “wrong directions” early-on, but she soon got the hang of it again!
Louise and her dad weren’t the only family sharing a car for the Sunday – Matt and Peter Grice debuted their Isuzu Bellet. It’s deliberately rough around the edges, just like its owners!
The car ran well during the day, but there was a big “code brown” moment for Peter mid-afternoon while still getting used to the grip levels of the soggy Khanacross track. Oops…
Dave Anstis was at it once again, winning the “who can throw dirt the furthest off the track” award!
Tod Reed and David West took out the Khanacross event in their Evo Lancer and I was fortunate enough to ride as passenger later in the day. The way the Mitsubishi hooks-up on the dirt with rally tyres was incredible, it’s no wonder it came out on top.
I could have watched this thing rip up the track all day!
Lastly, there’s a lot to be said about Jake and Rex Lucas’ dedication to get this track up to a standard they were happy with. Myself and a couple of others were aware of how stressed Jake was in the week leading up to this and the man-hours both he and Rex put in to make it a worthwhile day!
I’ve since been told that this event set a record number of entries for an AWDCC dirt event, let alone the hype in the lead-up. With so much work still being done behind the scenes, I hope we get to witness this event happen at this scale again next year. Fingers, toes and everything else crossed!!
Wilby Raceway set the scene for round 5 of the Rapid Performance lap dash series. The little town just 15 minutes from Yarrawonga has a very quiet “blink and you would miss it" kind of vibe with a population of only 270.
The swamp-like surrounds of the raceway made it interesting to gain access down the adequately named “Cemetery lane”, water almost completely devouring the dirt track leading to the race paddock.
With the disappointment of submersing my car after washing it only 2 days before, it was down to business.
The day started off with 4 groups totaling just over 20 people in attendance. This soon dropped to 3 groups as competitors rested cars or ran into mechanical problems.
Mac Taylor's Bug had a target painted on its back. It has been a real surprise packet this year - many of the guys in Modified class had to scoop their jaws off the ground as the old VW was putting them to shame on the time sheets.
The first few sessions bunched up the Modified class, providing spectators with some exciting door-to-door action.
Ben Arnold provided commentary from the start/finish line with the aid of a new PA system donated by Greg Keen, owner of Printer Wizards in Albury. This added a new element to the track action for spectators. It really was Greg’s day in his R32 GTR walking away with both the class win and overall win, beating Peter Ryder by only 0.3 of a second!
Darren and his son Nathan have resorted to using their HQ Ute to compete. The year started off in a HQ sedan that succumbed to mechanical issues, then round 4 in an R31 Skyline before it also gave up under the stress of competition.
The ute has a completely standard 3 speed auto and 253 power house with just some R-Spec tires to generate grip for the old work horse.
Jake and Rex Lucas were at it again, but this time with a Lancer GSR 1.8L turbo. It was a rushed affair the night before getting it to run properly, strip the interior out and put in a roll cage ready for Sunday's meet.
Results can be found on the Natsoft website http://racing.natsoft.com.au/results/
AWDCC Information: http://www.awdcc.com.au/
The next round will be a twilight race meeting held at the DECA Center Barnawartha on the 19th of November - mark it on your calenders!
Thanks again to Leigh Rizzato for editing!
And also: Check out Jake's video from the day below!
This round of the Motorkhana series started a lot nicer than most track days have for AWDCC this year – the skies were all but clear, the sun shone through and it was warm! It was short-lived though, as after lunch it was like the deaths of winter again. Me being optimistic, I didn't even pack a jumper so by the end of the day my nipples could cut tempered glass.
Once again we were meant to be out at the Villa Grove Jindera site, but rain and conditions made the club change back to the DECA site at Barnawartha. This meant that the last dirt Motorkhana held by AWDCC was very early this year, and talks about scheduling for next year are already being held.
The top of the table for this round looked a little different – with Rod Shaw’s grey/white roof Mini incapacitated with some mechanical issues, he jumped in his white Mini, setting him down the order and not fighting for first or second as normal.
Rod really loves these little things! He competes yearly at Hay, NSW for the Mini Nationals (where he also does quite well on the score card).
The healthy rivalry between he and Simon (pictured) was alive and well, but this round was all Simon's for the Motorkhana, 1st outright in that event for the day.
Matt Grice normally drives his turbo LPG powered LS VK Commodore around but chose to join his father in his R31. The big change between the cars saw Matt pull up short on getting around some of the cones throughout the early part of the day, but he soon got the hang of it.
Arguably the best sounding car of the day was David's Toyota Soarer. A raspy note escaped the exhaust as he powered though the tests, wide open throttle. The quad cam 1UZ loves sitting near the red line.
Annabel in her daily driven MX-5 attacked every track layout in an exceptionally smooth manner, this time netting a 3rd outright in the Motorkhana and 5th in the Khanacross. The little Mazda sporting a set of BC coilovers to keep it even more rigid though the corners as well as a race seat, appropriate Nardi wood grain steering wheel, shift knob and handbrake handle to match the peanut butter colored interior.
These days are normally split into two different competitions. The morning for Motorkana on the skid pan, the afternoon utilizing the Deca track for a Khanacross on this occasion. This time the layout was the main circuit in reverse direction, chicanes placed as obstacles to keep speed down, ending on the skid pad with cones to work your way around until you find yourself screeching to a stop in the “garage”.
Jake Lucus took out the Khanacross at possibly the cost of the poor Excel’s engine for the second time in two races when it decided it no longer needed all its oil and pushed it back out though his home-made breather/catch can.
Jake also came runner-up behind Simon in the morning’s Motorkhana.
Feedback from this I hear was pretty good and I'd be surprised if this didn't happen at a few more ‘Khana days!
For Full results follow the link though to AWDCC Website below
Written by Luke Hunter
Edited by Ligh Rizzato
If you ever thought there wasn't enough variety of cars in the local car scene here on the border you clearly need to come along to a track day held by Albury Wodonga Districts Car Club. We take a walk around the pits to find some unique and interesting cars first up. (Pictured Roger and Ben Arnold's Winfield GTR along side Peter Ryder's Ls S13)
While the driver briefing was being held I took the opportunity to jump up on the wall to get a better perspective of the entrants for the day. We see the return of Imre (Pictured front and center in the R33) to the track, after missing last round at Wilby sorting out the last of his RB25det swap from the old boat anchor that was a Sohc 2L six, to become a real r33 now! The swap along with the turbo brake upgrade saw two whole seconds shaved off the clock to to achieve a new PB of 01.04.41
Over in the far corner hidden by Charles Haynes Clubman was Alan Pettett's Lotus 23 replica, I was told it was running a 20v 4-Age set up, but with the size of this thing I'm not completely sure how that was possible, the lotus was so low the body of the car didn't even come up past my knee when I stood next to it. Hope to catch up with Alan at another round to find out more!
Another one of the stand outs for myself was this hand built Special “Maysdale Spec”. Piloted by Peter Grenness and running a ford 4L flat head v8 from the 40s and incorporating some modern engine management.
But wait, there's more! Peters choice of transportation for the Maysdale is way beyond cool, A Layland transporter with matching steel finish saw a lot of people stop and take photos of it as they approached the pits.
Perhaps starting life as a motor home? I think this is a much better way to use the old bus!
Back on track again out Chief Lap Dash even organizer Cory Gillet in his LS propelled s13, an unfortunate accident heading home from round 2 the wrote his 4wd and trailer off was a sort of blessing in disguise coming back better than ever with a new paint job laid by David at Status Customs. Dave was also out in his ke26 corolla van! (See earlier Facebook Posts)
Leigh decided for this round he would step out of his late model lotus and give his Skoda Octavia RS wagon a work out, his fastest time 1.02.49.
Ben wasn't able to strap into the Winfield GTR this round due to prior engagements, so his father Roger piloted it for the day. Fresh from a front diff rebuild Roger said that the suspension set up still needed work and more testing to get it to where it should be in the times.
Some really close battles were had between these four cars in the morning, you can really see how big Allan's Lotus 23 is in this photo, even to think how small early Corollas are as well as Nick's Black Louts in the background, it really blew me away.
That's it for this post. The next Albury Wodonga District track event is a Motorhkana to be held on the 11th of September and as usual, if anyone would like photos of the day please get in contact!
If anyone hasnt seen the video Jake put together of this round check it out below
Also Jake's other work at: JL MEDIA
Growing up in Wangratta myself, I used to see Shane's Charger all the time around the streets when I was in high school. Being that, even back then there weren't many around meant that it wasn't hard to spot out of all the bland monotone family cars that took people solely from A - B every day.
Shane's had and loved this car for a around eight years but in the past couple its been away from the road to get the turbo set up right on it. And to say that I was stoked to be requested to shoot the VJ was, the car l had seen all those years ago was an understatement.
We organized it the weekend of Chrysler's on the Murray, To make it easy as Shane was bringing the car up anyway. If you are local or a Dodge, Mopar, Chrysler fan it would be hard to to have heard of this weekend. The colour itself is a custom mix of Holden Hot House Green that sets the whole package off rather nicely!
At the time I shot the car it hadn't undergone its final tune, further work needed to be done but as of last week Shane got back to Matt Sims Performance to make 255rwkw on just 11psi boost.
The VJ runs a Gt35/40 External gated Garrett Turbo being fed by custom made intake and exhaust manifolds and putting the power to the ground though 15x10 rears.
The interior stays mostly stock with the exception of extra gauges to keep an eye on all the vitals, seats have been re trimmed and bolstered to keep Shane and his passengers in place with the new found power.
I had fun shooting the VJ and want to take this opportunity to thank him, I tried a couple of different things for this shoot and I'm happy with the results.