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A Blast From Japanese Drag Racing’s Past

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Toby Thyer Photographer 33

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve proven you an array of automobiles that competed on the contemporary 2022 Possibility x G-Works Tremendous Drag Competition. From Corvettes to RX-7s, the Eastern drag racing scene is as attention-grabbing as ever, regardless of as of late being a shadow of its former self.

The ones striving to stay drag racing alive in Japan are totally devoted to the reason, and so they’re bringing some severe quarter mile {hardware} out to play at each Japan Drag Championship spherical alternative. At Central Circuit remaining month, an overly particular system was once among them, even though I’ll admit that I didn’t know what I used to be taking a look at till after the development.

The Eastern tuning powerhouse this is HKS indubitably wishes no creation. Subsequent yr they’ll have fun their fiftieth anniversary, and over the previous half-century they’ve constructed some superb demo automobiles, a lot of that have reset information of their respective disciplines. One such system was once the HKS Drag GT-R, which at a time when the Eastern tuning scene was once going zeroyon mad, blew the contest out of the staging lanes with a 7.671-second ET at Sendai Hello-Land Raceway. For a very long time, the long-lasting HKS-striped R33 was once the fastest all-wheel power automotive on the earth.

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However AWD wasn’t HKS’s simplest focal point. Additionally they dabbled in FF and naturally FR, the latter generating automobiles just like the HKS Drag 180SX – a tube-frame Prostock construct from the past due ’90s that ran low 7-second ETs. Following on from that automotive, in 2001 HKS pulled the wraps off one thing much more severe – a complete tube-chassis Toyota Supra powered via a twin-turbo 3UZ-FE V8 engine pumping out 1,400ps.

The HKS Drag 80 Supra was once engineered for 6-second passes, and set as much as race in america. It accomplished its function when it ran a 6.893-second move at 193mph at Englishtown Raceway in New Jersey.

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As with many well-known demo automobiles, the HKS Supra more or less light into oblivion after its go back to Japan, but it surely was once re-powered via a 2JZ engine and, doubtlessly (knowledge is skinny at the floor) ran a 7-second move earlier than HKS retired, and in the long run bought the automobile.

I’m positive you’ll be able to bet what you’re taking a look at now…


The ex-HKS Drag 80 Supra has for a few years now been referred to as the First Means Racing Supra. It’s owned, maintained and pushed via Koji Yamaguchi, every other OG of the Eastern drag racing scene.

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In Yamaguchi-san’s arms, the Supra has endured to be developed, and thus far run a very best of ET of 6.83-seconds within the Professional Turbo elegance. It nonetheless options its authentic Jerry Bickel Race Automobiles chassis and stroked 3.2L 2JZ-GTE, even though the engine setup and driveline has noticed a lot of adjustments over time.


I’d’ve cherished to have spent some extra time with the Supra within the Central Circuit pits, so you’ll be able to make certain I’ll just do that the following time I make it out to a Japan Drag Championship match and Yamaguchi-san is again in the back of the wheel of this true blast from Eastern drag racing’s previous.

Toby Thyer
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