Turbocharged Cars Wipe the Floors in the Toyota Sprint Series 2008
In its very first year, the Toyota Sprint Series (TSS), which is backed by Toyota themselves, exceeded all expectations and has proved to be a thrilling and dramatic championship at an affordable level.
The 2008 championship consisted of five rounds and the battles that took place have been both entertaining and rewarding for the drivers and spectators alike.
TSS event organiser, Barry Cross said “We have structured the series to provide everyone with the chance to compete to win and to give them the opportunity to move forward in the magical world of motorsport.” The competing cars in the series included the venerable classics: MR2, Celica, Supra, Lexus, Corolla and Starlet, and the newer models: Auris and Sera; proving that the TSS was the place to be in 2008.
Along with Toyota, turbocharger specialists Turbo Dynamics (TD) backed the series during its opening year. TD were keen to push the affordable and alternative motorsport experience, and support their competing customers in the series. However, little did they know quite how well their customers would actually do!
Competing in the championship with TD turbocharged cars were Adrian Smith of Fensport (a Turbo Dynamics dealer), Darren Deavall and Steve Timms.
Timms drove a Celica GT4 ST185, which was powered by a TD hybrid GT26 turbocharger and produced 280 BHP. Falling into Class A2 – ‘above 1600cc with standard frame turbocharger’ - Timms did well throughout the first four rounds, but failed to attend the final round, consequently missing out on an extra 50 bonus points. Despite this however, Timms still managed to achieve 11th place in his class with a respectable 211 points, which were awarded for powering through the rounds that he did attend.
Smith, who was driving a Corolla GT4, and Deavall in his Celica GT4 ST205 both fell into Class A1 – ‘above 1600c with aftermarket turbocharger’. The two drivers dominated the early rounds of the TSS; locked in a battle against one another that was to last all year.
Smith’s car was powered by a one-off TD hybrid GT26 turbocharger, which had a specially modified GT35 ball-bearing Garrett core-assembly fitted into a genuine Toyota twin scroll turbine housing and bespoke Garrett GT Series Compressor Cover. The car could knock out an impressive 425 BHP. Deavall’s Celica was powered by a TD GT3071 turbocharger with an internally wastegated 0.64 AR turbine housing, the car produced 430 BHP.
Fighting hard against one another throughout the series, Smith took the first two wins of the season before Deavall fought back with a win in Round 3. The following two rounds would be make-or-break. It was time for Smith to utilize his car’s full power and this extra, determined push saw him win both Rounds 4 and 5, and consequently come 1st Place in his Class.
Having won the four rounds and competed in all five, Smith achieved the highest number of points awarded in the series: 399 thus being crowned the Toyota Sprint Series Championship Winner. Not to be defeated however, Deavall came 2nd Place in Class A1 and a very impressive, not to mention, close 2nd Place in the Overall Championship with 393 points.
TSS winner, Adrian Smith said “The Toyota Sprint Series has been an amazing success story for me as a driver. As soon as I heard about it I wanted to compete and driving the Fensport Corolla again has been a lot of fun.
“The events have been very slick and well organised. The competition and points system were designed to keep things close so having a super reliable car has been the key to success. To win the championship in the very first year means a huge amount to me both personally and professionally.”
Highly impressed with TD’s customers’ achievements and wins in the TSS, Peter Marsh, Managing Director of Turbo Dynamics, said “My congratulations go to Adrian for winning the Toyota Sprint Series, he achieved a fantastic result. We are really pleased and proud of all our customers; they came back with great championship results.
“The series has definitely proved to be a thrilling one for all those involved and we wish our customers returning for the 2009 championship the very best of luck.”