Even with Chris's growing experience, only high 11s were realized. At this point it became clear that the suspension needed attention. Chris contacted Ground Control which built a set of coilovers utilizing Koni shocks. The newfound tuneability of the suspension meant the corner scales could be used and the car could be brought into better balance which would improve the car's behavior down the track. Glen tried numerous spring combinations but the Supra was making too much power and was unloading too much between shifts. Undaunted, Glen custom machined a set of double-adjustable shocks. The shocks were miracle workers and the Supra was breaking off 1.55-second 60-foots enroute to 10-second timeslips on Mickey Thompson cheater slicks. Now that's a practice car.

With the car hooking and the e.t.s falling, a great deal of pressure as put on the clutch combination and it soon felt the effects. Vinny had become the first full-bodied Supra in the nines and was running a standard RPS Turbo Clutch so RPS was the logical choice. RPS manufactures its own pressure plate using its patented seven-step heat treating process. RPS does not use metallic or unsprung discs in its clutches to ensure smooth engagement and drastically reduce driveline shock which helps save engines and axles. Early on Turbo Clutches relied on the RPS pressure plate and the factory disc. The problem was with Vinny's output the stock disc would glaze in 10 or 12 passes compromising its holding power. Rob Smith knew how important a lightweight clutch disc is when it comes to speed shifts. A lighter disc would cause less transmission wear especially when it came to the synchros. With no lightweight clutch material on the market Rob developed his own carbon fiber clutch material, called Carbonite, which is 30-percent lighter than stock material and provides a higher coefficient of friction. Using Chris's Supra as a test bed the formula was tweaked and the 3500-pound Supra has made 20 10-second passes with 7200-rpm launches and has experienced no drop in clutch performance. The clutch spins an ACCPT carbon-fiber driveshaft and stock rear end gear packs.

As this article goes to press the Supra is undergoing a big evolutionary step-the transformation from stock-based to stand-alone engine management and TRD is coming on board as a sponsor. Rob Smith is employing a new Haltech E6S to oversee the 2JZ-GTE and hopes to see the Supra on its way into the nines...as long as Chris practices in his Integra that is.

HKS USA, Inc. Turbonetics
2255 Agate Ct.
Simi Valley
CA  93065
Performance Factory
34-11 62nd St.
Woodside Queens
NY  11377
2156 W. Northwest Hwy, Ste. 309
TX  75220
Mickey Thompson Tires
4670 Allen Road Stow
OH  44224
RPS Performance Products
9820 Owensmouth Ave. Ste. 14
CA  91311
B&M Racing & Performance
9142 Independence Ave.
CA  91311
Tanabe Suspension/Mackin Industries
9921 Jordan Cir.
Santa Fe Springs
CA  90670
Ground Control