Often with high-power drag cars the transmission is the weakest link, certainly in the early stages, and this car proved to be no exception. "We don't know anybody who has ever managed to break a GT4 driveshaft - and I've broken two this year," he said with a grin. However, that weak link seems to have been cured thanks to Fensport's own triple-plate clutch and extra-tough close-ratio straight-cut dog selector gearsets, the latter of which don't come cheap at 5,000 a set - and Adrian's got a couple of spares, just in case no less.
Braking is more than taken care of by 10-pot calipers on the front to slow the 326mm rotors and a further 6-pot acting on the rear. Naturally, the brake balance is fully adjustable from inside the rollcage-protected cockpit while the driver is secured in his Recaro with a Schroth five-point harness.
A combination of Whiteline and Tein components take care of any handling issues. Despite on-going developments throughout the season, Adrian sees this area ripe for improvements. "Handling is OK up to about 80 mph," he said. "We are not sure if the problem is aerodynamics or the shocks, but we have struggled on several circuits." Since these photos were taken the car was fitted with AST 3-way adjustable suspension and Adrian is getting a new wing fabricated that he hopes will generate some extra downforce.
So did the six months of hard work pay off? How was the car on its debut event at Santa Pod dragstrip? "I was extremely pleased with how competitive it was straight out of the box," he replies. "We did an 11.1 run but we'd mounted the coil pack too close to the distributor and it caused interference, which made the ECU go mental above 7,000 rpm." They moved the coil the following day and added a carbon-fiber shield and on the following weekend the car ran a 10.6-second quarter-mile.
The car's first outing in Time Attack series was also a success as the Celica came home 5th overall - despite having up to 200 bhp less than some of his rivals such as the Norris Designs EVO IX. Best results of the season? He's notched up a couple of 4th places in the Time Attack, which just goes to prove that he's punching well above his weight. This year he's certain to be a front-runner.