While Dana surpassed his original goal of an 11-second daily driver, we all know that no enthusiast stops there. After the 9.96 run Dana decided that it was time to build a custom intake manifold for the car. It was a six-week-long project, night after night on the flow bench trying to get the best numbers possible. Once completed, they headed to the dyno and the intake manifold netted a 40-hp gain. Jason Seibels, who tunes the vehicle, said it was "the most evenly flowing manifold he has ever seen on a Supra."
Once the charge air makes its way into the runners extra-large 1,600cc injectors spray high-octane race fuel before finally making its way into the combustion chamber. Keeping in the injectors fully primed and ready are a trio of Weldon components (fuel pump, filter and fuel pressure regulator) in place of the stock pieces. The air/fuel mixture is further compressed in the combustion chamber where it gets ignited by Denso Iridium spark plugs. Increased spark intensity is aided by an HKS DLI ignition amplifier. Orchestrating ignition and fuel timing is an AEM EMS stand-alone engine management system.
The TRD rearend transfers the 1,300 angry horses to the drive axles that spin a pair of Weld Alumistar three-piece forged wheels mounted on 325/50-15 BFGoodrich drag radials. Up front, one-piece Weld Alumistar mags are mounted inside Moroso skinnies. Since this Supra puts down 8-second runs on the quarter-mile, safety is paramount. This is no Sunday drive in the park. DRD Fabrication built a custom ten-point roll cage to keep the driver safe in the event of any mishaps. Simpson seat belts hold Dana tight and the race look is complete with a Simpson parachute and window net. All this while listening to a not-so-racy Eclipse deck, MB Quarts mids and highs sound system. Guess Dana isn't worried about excess weight there.
With the extra 40 hp from the intake manifold it was time to turn up the boost from 24 psi to 30 psi and head to the track at the 2003 Supras Invade Las Vegas event. The first pass was a 9.27 at 147 mph and by the end of the night Dana ran a best of 9.14 at 149 mph. He says, "We never expected the car to run that good, so now we were on a new quest, to be the first full-weight Supra into the 8s." It was at this time they switched from a 74mm turbo to a 76mm one "which was the biggest wheel you could get in that housing," according to Dana.
After two months of tuning and dialing in the boost to what they felt the track would accept, they achieved their goal and ran a 8.89 at 155 mph which made them the first full-weight Supra to run in the 8-second range. We should mention this was also done with no nitrous and, additionally, was before installing the current 88mm turbo used now.
At this point the Virtual Works Supra's setup was completely maxed out so if they wanted to continue to break records, they needed to try new things. Dana decided to take the car completely apart and start fresh from the ground up, which turned into a ten-month project. The only things on the vehicle now that were there before are the Sparco seats and coil-overs. That paint and body process alone took three months. Chris Haynes and Travis Newport of Newport Autobody shaved the antenna and rear wipers and fixed all the dings and dents and prepped the Supra for paint. They completed a three-stage secret blue paint with some ice pearl.
After that it was time to start putting the car back together, which is always a time consuming process. The car was a complete shell with no doors, windows, fenders, etc. After getting the body and interior back together Dana started working on all of the fabrication. Once that was all done, they put the new powerplant in, including the 88mm turbo. The new setup is only about a month old so they are still working the bugs out. On their maiden pass at the track they already set new records for the vehicle. The new best time on boost is 8.72 at 157 mph and the new best mph is 168.3, on nitrous.
This Supra has stretched the laws of engineering and ran the spinners on the dyno ragged. It has been a popular magnet at the annual Supras Invade Las Vegas events as well as at the TX2K Supra meet. Dana also squares off against would-be competitiors at many of the West Coast NHRA events and has won two events to date. After four years, $50,000, and many midnight oil-burning nights later Dana Westover has created an unstoppable Supra Star.