Topcats Racing and owner Paul Black, don’t believe in doing things by half. Not one thing has been compromised on the newly converted LS7 Sagaris and neither has its first journey to Banus in Spain in a convoy of supercars (with the power to weight ratios confirmed, we already know the Sagaris will outperform every one of them). Paul is driving all the way from his home in Solihull to catch the ferry to Spain and onwards to the Southern Spanish circuit…..the day after he collected it from the team.
Since our last post we had reached the end of the installation process for the engine, gearbox and all the components.
In order to create enough fuel pressure for the engine we had to change the fuel pumps and pipes. The wiring loom and Dedicated ECU was installed and mapped on Saturday (8th May) at the Torque of the Devil rolling road by Chris Todd, a master technician, we hasten to add. The Sagaris was run on the rollers and the mapping adjusted for maximum performance. Final figures met with the teams expectations at a whopping 550.4bhp and 512 lbs/ft of torque.
On Monday (10th May) Paul arrived to take delivery of his ‘new’ car, the very day he had requested completion.
The team just had time for a few test runs with the car on their private mile long runway before Paul arrived.
Team Boss, Warren Gilbert, did the honours and drove Paul for his first run to make him aware of the staggering power he now has under the bonnet.
Paul was stunned to silence, his face a picture, but the bear hug he gave Warren was approval enough.
Paul took the opportunity to test run the car himself with Warren alongside, before taking to the open road, to give Paul guidance on the revs, gears and throttle input required i.e. not a lot in first and second gear unless you’re in a position to impress with your driving skills.
Warren demonstrated that even from 15mph in 5th gear the engine didn’t grumble and just pulled like a train when floored.
By pure (and pleasant) coincidence, Anthony Partridge was just out on a drive in his LS3 Cerbera which Topcats Racing completed several months ago and stopped off at the workshop as Paul was test running his Sagaris. It gave us a great photo opportunity to line up both cars as well as the teams LS7 powered Mosler MT900GT3 which has spent most of its racing history delivering its drivers to the winners podium.
Paul left for Spain yesterday at Midday and reported back to the team when he reached Portsmouth. He was ecstatic. His initial reaction is how smooth the power delivery is. Something he will appreciate more and more as he clocks up the miles on his long journey.
Paul is due to arrive back in the UK early next week after what we hope will be an epic journey of thrilling circuit driving and the choice of a blast or an amble through the Spanish countryside.
Once the car is back, the team will set about fitting Nitron shock absorbers which will be set-up to suit Paul’s driving style and needs. The brakes will be upgraded to deal with the additional power. We have to assume that there maybe a few adjustments required as Paul spends more time in the car.
We will get Paul to share his thoughts and experiences as he acquaints himself with the phenomenal power and drivability of the car. Will the transformation fulfil his desire for the perfect TVR?
We have a number of bookings for the LS conversions and we have two conversions underway. We have had a deluge of enquiries since the news feature in Pistonheads last week and in response we would like to arrange an open day where we will have some of our LS engined road cars, including Paul Black’s Sagaris, available for demonstration on the runway. We will announce a date within the next couple of weeks.
Look out for our post next week when Paul Black will give you his verdict.