The world’s quickest and fastest pump gas drag radial car isn’t a title that comes easily . And given the onslaught of small tire, doorslammer drag racing in North America, along with dedicated events such as Hot Rod Magazine’s Pump Gas Drags, it also isn’t one you’d expect a racer that hails from the United Kingdom to lay claim to. But Wolverhampton, England’s Andy Frost does exactly that, and he wears the crown with pride and staunch confidence.
Behind the wheel of his 1972 Vauxhall VX4/90 FD, famously known in its current incarnation as Red Victor 2, Frost holds the international record at 7.67 seconds and 190 MPH. The classic, slick-as-a-brick 3,400 pound Vauxhall is powered by a 572 cubic inch Chevrolet fed by twin 88mm turbochargers and produces in excess of 2,100 horsepower. The monster powerplant features a Dart M block, Lunati Pro Series crank, Oliver billet steel rods, Diamond turbo pistons, a Don Bailey-designed custom turbo Comp Cam, Dart Pro1 355 CNC heads, and a modified Edelbrock 454R intake.
Transferring the horsepower to the 315 Mickey Thompson drag radials is a Dedenbear-cased two-speed transbrake Powerglide with a 10.5 inch, bolt-together Neal Chance torque converter.
Andy purchased the car – originally powered by a 104 horsepower 4-cylinder engine – in 1982, and while serving as his daily driver, began bracket racing it in 1991 while honing his racing skills and knowledge. In 1995 the Street Eliminator category was created, and he had found a home for the street legal, street-tired, pump gas Red Victor 1. After a successful initial stint in the class, he parked the car in 1997 to finance its transformation into a street legal race car, whilst accepting an offer to pilot a Top Alcohol Dragster – which he deemed a ‘pleasant distraction.’ Red Victor 2, which included a full tube chassis, fiberglass nose, and countless other modifications, was completed in 2002.
In 2005, Andy, along with Trish Biro of RPM Magazine, formed the concept for the very first World Street Race. After 18 months spent organizing the event, he, along with three other Super Eliminator competitors from the UK, traveled to No Problem Raceway in Belle Rose, Louisiana. There, the UK team swept the board, grabbing the top two qualifying positions and capturing the winner, runner-up, and team champion titles.
At the end of 2005, the decision was made to convert Red Victor 2 to a twin turbocharged combination. “After witnessing Tim Lynch’s turbo Mustang destroy the competition in 2004, I decided to change the car to twin turbo power. I knew after seeing Tim run that turbos were the way forward in limited tire racing.” The move proved to be everything that Andy and team had envisioned, blasting 7.80’s right out of the gate in 2006 when the class record was a mere 7.96. Despite many setbacks, including a ban of the Mickey Thompson 315 Radial in Super Eliminator as a direct result of his dominating performances, the Red Victor team continues to press forward and seek new challenges.
In addition to holding the world pump gas radial tire record at 7.67, Andy and Red Victor 2 currently holds or has at one time has set numerous performance benchmarks, including the quickest street legal car in the UK and Europe at 7.41 seconds and 197mph, the King of Europe record holder at 7.81 seconds and 188mph, the first to 190mph in Street Eliminator, the first backed-up 7-second passes in Street Eliminator, and top speed of 177mph at the World Street Race in Belle Rose, Louisiana in 2005.
Along with the performance records, he has the Street eliminator championship in 1996 and runner-up finishes in 2005 and 2007, the King of Europe West 2009 title, the Castrol Challenge win in 2006 and 2007, and multiple wins and final-round appearances in Street eliminator to his credit.
Frost, however, is not content with his current laundry list of achievements and accolades in the sport, and is prepared to again venture outside of his native country and fulfill his competitive desire to go toe-to-toe with the best that the drag racing world has to offer. “I want to go and compete with the best. I’ve beaten the best and set records in the UK and Europe, and I now want to travel to the USA, Scandinavia and Australia to take on their best.”
In order to do so, he and his team are hard at work preparing a new chariot, dubbed Red victor 3, slated to debut for the 2011 season; a fully street legal, Vauxhall-bodied piece that Frost is staunchly confident will take street legal drag racing to a new level on a worldwide scale. In sticking with the Vauxhall theme, the new car will again carry a 1972 Vauxhall VX4/90 FD-based shell. The body, currently at the molding stage, has been stretched 8 inches while the wheelbase has been lengthened 14 inches to make it suitable for a Pro Modified style car. Doing so will allow Frost to be competitive in the FIA Pro Modified ranks and other sanctioning bodies internationally. The car is being built much in the way of a modern Pro Street entry, and will be fully street legal in the UK, which calls for amenities such as headlights, taillights, windshield wipers, and horn to all be functional.
Power will come from a 540 cubic inch, twin-turbocharged combination on alcohol, with a Knight Racing Engines-prepared short block, Race Flow Development billet cylinder heads, Wilson Manifolds intake, and Garrett 91mm turbochargers. In addition to his plans within the states to compete in the Real World Street Nationals in Orlando and the Shakedown at E’town in Englishtown, New Jersey, Andy goes far beyond being just ambitious in stating that among his goals is to match race the current quickest and fastest street legal car on each continent. “I want it left in no doubt who has the fastest street legal car in the world! Bold words, I know. But having held the world absolute pump gas record for three years and still holding the world pump gas radial ET record gives me the confidence to say we can achieve even greater things with the new car.”