It takes a serious commitment to prepare a competitive car for time attack racing no matter where on earth you plan on racing it. But to prepare a car in the icy environment of Hokkaido Northern Japan and them ship it to Australia in the middle of Spring for the second year in row is truly a remarkable feat. Kurokawa-san and his loyal band of mechanics and supporters from TEAM DREAM and their seriously fast Mazda RX7 have once again confirmed entry into the hotly contested Link ECU Open Class.
“Kurokawa-san and the team massively enjoyed their time at WTAC and in Australia last year and are super excited to get back.” said team co-coordinator and Aussie ex-pat Rhett Roylance “They hope to focus on properly setting the car up for the demanding Sydney Motorsport Park track (something that last year’s engine issues didn’t allow them to do) and will be aiming high!”
“This team is truly inspirational for time attack racers worldwide” said Superlap CEO Ian Baker “they came here last year and had a troubled run, but have gone back home to Japan and fixed everything, made a whole bunch of improvements and are planning on returning with an extremely competitive car. No question there are some seriously experienced minds involved in this build including crew chief Koji Yamaguchi and engine builder Makoto Watanabe and I suspect if they can get all of their ducks in a row they could be right up at the pointy end of Open Class.”
“As I mentioned previously the team returned back to Japan, tested once in Hokkaido before competing at ATTACK Feb 2017 Tsukuba and were able to beat their previous time with a lap time of 55.932.” said Rhett Roylance “They have been kindly provided a WTAC Open Class spec rear wing from Voltex Japan that has reduced drag and stress on the engine yet provides similar if not improved rear down force, the cooler temperatures obviously helped but overall they seem to be over the engine issues they experienced last year at WTAC, this can be seen by their top speed on the back straight of 223.510 – not too far off Under Suzuki’s 229.397.”
“They have been working on an improved cooling system and have just made the switch to E85 which they hope will allow the engine to run cooler in Australia, they will be focusing on settings in the next couple of months along with testing the BorgWarner EFR 9180 to help with low down torque. If all goes well they will run a high compression engine with 2.0k of boost aiming for 700ps. After seeing the outright power of other competitors at WTAC last year there were suggestions for upgrading to a three-rotor configuration, but both Kurokawa-san and Watanabe-san are resolute in pushing the limits of the twin-rotor rotary engine.”
With the largest contingent of international challengers ever the competition will be unprecedented for 2017 and no question Kurokawa-san and TEAM DREAM plan on being right at the pointy end of the hotly contested Link ECU Open Class. Can they do it? We will have to wait until October to find out!
Check out some in-car footage of Testuhiro Kurokawa setting the Tokachi Clubman Course Record!: