Racer Rides: Shane Henderson’s 500WHP* 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX STI

*when the engine is ready

We’re peeking into the garages of the Giti-Formula V1 Challenge drivers to see what our racers like to drive in their personal time. First up is A. Line Autosport’s Shane Henderson and his “full mental” track-spec Bugeye!

What’s the story behind the car?
I bought the car secondhand over ten years ago and used it as a daily driver for about three to four years, I had done a few mods while using it as a daily driver but nothing over the top.

I chose the Subie as my brother had a performance shop specializing in the brand–I was actually with him when I saw the car for sale, thirty minutes later, I owned the car!

What was the inspiration to go all-out in building it?
About five years ago I entered a club race at Clark and by the end of the day I had destroyed the engine–that’s when the money pit opened and the major mods started happening!

Was that the first race of the car?
Yes, the very first race I blew up the engine–and two more times after that. The first two engines had ringland failures. I am starting on engine #4 today. All work and modding on the car is done myself.

ENGINE

  • EJ20 with 2.2L Cosworth stroker kit
  • Cosworth cams
  • Cosworth dry sump
  • Process West inlet manifold
  • Killer B EL headers
  • Custom-mount Garrett GTX3076R turbo
  • Custom FMIC and radiator
  • Haltech Elite 2500 ECU
Parts for bulletproofing the motor
What a beauty!

“There are also a lot of top-end parts from Roger Clark Motorsport in the UK. The exhaust cam wheels are titanium adjustable, I had to change to titanium parts as the sequential gearbox sheared the center out of the previous cams–because the gear change is so quick and savage it was whipping the timing belt and sheared the cam wheel and bent all the valves!”

Henderson also has a hi-flow in-tank fuel pump and twin external pumps all feeding a fuel surge tank to supply “enough fuel for the beast.”

TRANSMISSION

  • Samsonas Motorsport 6-speed dogbox with straight cut gears
  • Cusco adjustable plated differentials front and rear
The secret sauce for more AWD goodness

“I only need the clutch to leave the starting line, afterwards I can flatshift while changing up the gears. But going down I do need to lift off and use the clutch too.” A paddle shift system will eventually be added.

SUSPENSION AND BRAKES

  • Ohlins adjustable coilovers
  • Whiteline adjustable sway bars
  • Wisefab front and rear drop knuckles and 5×114 wheel hubs
  • Custom rear trailing arms and lateral links
  • Compbrake 350mm 6-pot fronts and 330mm 4-pot rears
  • Custom pedal box and remote reservoirs
  • Handbrake replaced with line lock
  • 18×10 wheels

INTERIOR AND EXTERIOR

  • Custom FIA-spec full weld-in cage
  • Sabelt racing seat with 6-pt harness
  • Racepak electronic logging dash
  • Nine Lives Racing 72″ alloy wing

“A big effort has been made to remove anything from the shell that is not structural or functional, I’m aiming for a race ready weight of 1200kg.” To that end, a tube-chassis front end and Lexan window replacement will be done in the future. For the exterior, a custom splitter and diffuser combo with a full flat underbody is planned, along with 60mm fender flares.

What compelled you to stick with the car even after three blown engines?
I have always liked the Subaru and have become very attached to this car. Every time I blow the engine, I don’t think of selling it, it has become a personal challenge to make the car better and faster. No way will I let the car get the better of me!

What’s the end goal for the Bugeye?
Once tuned and running 25psi+ of boost it should be at least 500+ wheel horsepower. But the most important is to beat the Hondas, ha ha!

The perfect trunk sticker!

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