Grande Ol’ Finale: Global Time Attack/Super Lap Battle
If you are unfamiliar with Super Lap Battle and Global Time Attack; here are a few things to keep in mind. Global Time Attack and Super Lap Battle, the grand finale, takes place at Buttonwillow Raceway Park in Buttonwillow, California and is the biggest Time Attack event in the United States and North America. This has been going on since 2004 when Sport Compact Car, Super Street, and Jason Dienhart created it so that the US would have its own version of the Hyper Rev Super Battle time attack that took place at Tsukuba Circuit. For every event, they have used the Clockwise 13 course and that is where all the records have been set. If you pull off a one-minute, 50-second time or faster, you’re flying around this configuration.
Eventually, Dienhart grew the event beyond Super Lap Battle and created the Global Time Attack series that would tour the US and bring a similar event to enthusiasts all over. However, GTAs finals would always happen in concert with Super Lap Battle and continue to grow time attack racing to what it is today. Global Time Attack has four main Classes that are then separated by drivetrain.
Enthusiast is strictly for a driver and car that is not only still street driven, but the guy who is just starting to get involved with GTA and time attack. Car modifications are strictly regulated; even the fuel used can only be unleaded gasoline, though engine swaps are permitted provided they are from the manufacture for the same type of car or have the same cylinder count. Finally, the tires must be DOT with a minimum UTQG-rating of 220 or higher.
Street is for the guy whose car is still street driven just like Enthusiast, but modifications begin to open up. E-85 is allowed, you can swap the engine with a larger one but it must still retain its catalytic converter and be from the same manufacturer, and while you must still use DOT tires you can get sticker 140 UTQG-rated versions. Both Street and Enthusiast allow for roll cages, but they are not allowed to penetrate the firewall and you can’t rip away the interior except to fit it. Finally, both classes do not allow for professional drivers to compete. So, if you hold a NASCAR, IMSA, FIA, or even a Formula Drift license, you’ll have to enter the next two classes.
Limited class takes modifications up a few notches. Here, you can start to modify the floor pan and firewall, but only to install things like engine swaps (which are open to any), wiring, seat mounts, roll cages, air jacks, fuel cells, and plumbing for liquids. The OEM structure of the shock towers must remain but if you wanted to get away from the solid axle in your S95-chassis Ford Mustang GT and go with the Cobra’s IRS, you can since it bolts in with minor modification but you can’t swap your AE86 Corolla to IRS since an OEM version was never made. You can also go with 80 UTQG-rated tires in this class so long as they are DOT-approved and have treads on their carcass. No slick-tires in this class.
Then, you have the big boy class of Unlimited. This is a nearly unrestricted class with the biggest requirement being that the car is not a tube-chassis car. A unibody car must remain that way, but you can convert it from FWD to RWD or even AWD if you choose. You can get away from the McPhearson Strut suspension to the better Short-and-Long Arm suspension. You can fit any engine, any transmission, custom subframes mounted in the OEM locations, chop the roof, use Nitrous Oxide, even use slick tires provided that the silhouette of the car remains close to OEM. The only catches are that a roll cage is required and that the OEM shock/strut towers still remain.
Within those classes are separations for drivetrains with front-wheel-drive (FWD), rear-wheel-drive (RWD), and all-wheel-drive (AWD). This does not account for engine placement so a mid-engine car that drives the rear wheels will be placed in RWD, a front engine car that drives the front wheels will be FWD, a rear-engine car that drives all four wheels will be AWD, etc. Part-time AWDs will be AWD as well even if it mostly powers one axle or the other as it still will power all wheels at some point. Last, only in Unlimited could you convert an AWD to run RWD; no other class below Unlimited allows for this modification.