Video: Frantic, Record-Setting Lap In Canada’s Fastest 350Z

Sasha Anis’ 350Z is no stranger to these pages. Nicknamed “Kels,” this modified Nissan has led an interesting life. It has seen stints in professional racing, time attack, and lately club racing among hard-driven Porsche GT3s, with which it can hold its own. Kels is an all-out build on a privateer’s budget.

With an emphasis on response, high-speed stability, and great traction, this former street car can put on quite a show — especially with Anis behind the wheel. It’s also capable of setting a few course records. This particular video shows it snagging one at Cayuga, also known as Toronto Motorsports Park.

It takes a trained hand, this car. Stiffly sprung on Koni 2822 4-way-adjustable race shocks, the car is quite nervous over the bumpy surface at TMP. Chalk up the rapid breakaway to 12-inch Volk ZE40 wheels wrapped in either Michelin or Continental slicks. The video starts on a wild note with Anis counter-steering in the direction of a cement wall just a few feet away (0:21), so strap in for a wild lap.

Testing to make sure the brake pads are seated before a heavy braking zone, he taps the brake pedal with his left foot as his right mashes the throttle. This way, the brake pistons are fully extended and ready to clamp.

More impressive than this odd use of the brakes, is the way which he balances the car in the middle of the lap. A dab of left-foot braking combined with a very progressive turn-in, as well as a little short shifting, is what gives him so much positive drive forward. Minimal wheelspin, despite clambering over the curbs — causing the revs to spike occasionally. It’s all very patient and measured, yet, aggressive.

Thanks to a foot camera, we see Anis’ refined footwork in action.

The motor always seems on-song. It’s a basic VQ35, but when upgraded with custom spec JE pistons, custom grind cams and valve springs by Jim Wolf Technology, a custom intake manifold — later replaced by 53mm individual throttle bodies from Jenvey — and C3 Composites’ custom carbon airboxes, the engine has a ravenous appetite for revs.

Next, Anis chose to increase the displacement from 3.5-liters to 3.7-liters by using an OE VQ37 crankshaft and VQ35 connecting rods, GT-R rod bolts, with stock cylinder heads to cap it off. Keeping the whole mill lubed under heavy cornering is a Dailey dry sump and a Peterson oil tank; the latter located over the rear wheels to keep them firmly planted. A Bosch 044 fuel pump and Injector Dynamics 725cc injectors feed the thirsty engine.

Despite the response and the outright power — 413 horsepower exactly — it puts almost all of it to the ground, though it occasionally spins the rears ever so slightly. There’s a Nismo Pro LSD at the rear helping in that department, though you’ve gotta give most of the credit to Anis, whose right foot depresses the throttle as if there’s an egg underneath it.

However, the ecstatic slide at the end is from all-or-nothing throttle. When snagging the lap record, it’s worth going through some expensive rubber in celebration.

About the author

Tommy Parry

Tommy Parry has been racing and writing about racing cars for the past seven years. As an automotive enthusiast from a young age, he worked jobs revolving around cars throughout high school, and tried his hand on the race track on his 20th birthday. After winning his first outdoor kart race, Tommy began working as an apprentice mechanic to amateur racers in the Bay Area to sharpen his mechanical understanding. He has worked as a track day instructor and automotive writer since 2012, and continues to race karts, formula cars, sedans, and rally cars in the San Francisco region.
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