Trans-Am TA2 is a spec racing series in Australia that runs identical space-frame V8 muscle cars. It’s a cost-effective platform that allows for close, exciting competition. And now, they plan to form a separate championship for Asia. A test was recently held at the Bira International Circuit ahead of the inaugural 2018 season where 2 drivers from the Philippines came to give it a go.
Don Pastor and Gaby Dela Merced completed the test in a Ford Mustang TA2 although it can also be re-bodied as a Camaro or Challenger. The chassis is built by Howe Racing Enterprises in America, while the modern 525 hp V8 is sourced from GM Motorsport. It’s then fitted with a 6-speed sequential gearbox with paddle shift controls, a locking diff, traction control, and weighs 1,250 kg without a driver.
With his experience in Euro NASCAR and the Asian V8 Championship, Don adapted to the new machine quite easily. As a matter of fact, he was able to break the TA2 lap record around the 2.41 km circuit in Thailand by a full second.
Gaby, on the other hand, became the first lady driver to ever test a TA2 in Asia. She also showed good pace aided by her extensive experience in Formula Toyota, Formula BMW, and Formula 3.
If everything goes as planned, TA2 Asia Racing is scheduled to begin the 2018 season sometime in March. The 6-leg calendar will visit circuits in Thailand, Malaysia, and the Philippines where events will feature between 2 to 3 races each.
Don Pastor: “Although it packs big power figures, the TA2 is very easy to drive. It has tons of grip making it very forgiving, while the paddle shift is a big plus. It’s a beautiful car and is so much more than I imagined in every area. Our plan for next year is to have at least 2 Filipino drivers race in TA2 Asia. It’ll also be a viable next step for Asian V8 graduates when the champion returns in 2018.”
Gaby Dela Merced: “TA2 experience was the opposite of what I was expecting. I was surprised how easy it was to adapt to. Good balance and suspension kept it agile and all the equipment were top of the line. The TA2 felt more like driving a GT compared to a Formula. It’s been a while since I’ve had this much fun in a race car. I’d like to thank Craig Corliss and Tom Pastor for the opportunity to test.”
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