We are SO slacking. A different generation of Evo every month in 2010, remember? Here it is June and we haven’t had an Evo V on the front page yet. That changes NOW. Karl took a few minutes to talk about his V, competition in the MLR Sprint Series, and even the rare Tommi Mäkinen Edition Colt.
What’s your real name? (What’s your screen name?)
Karl Richardson – kins
Where do you live?
I live in Chester, UK.
What do you do for a living?
For a living I work as a Mechanical Design Engineer.
What Mitsubishi(s) do you drive? How long have you had it/them?
I drive a 1998, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution V RS (Scotia white). I used to own a US spec 2003 Lancer Evolution VIII.
What’s your build philosophy/goals for your Mitsubishi? How do you use it?
Up until recently my Evo has been my daily driver. I say up until recently because I blew the engine back in April and I’m currently having a forged motor built, so the Evo is at my tuners – MG Autos “The Evolution Specialists”. I also use the Evo for track days and compete in the MLRSS (Mitsubishi Lancer Register Sprint Series)
What originally attracted you to the Mitsubishi? What keeps you going today?
I’ve always been a massive fan of rally cars. In 1999 I was the grand old age of 18. My girlfriend at the time had a neighbour who bought a brand spanking new Evo VI GSR…. and that was it, I knew from then on, that when I could afford to do so, I had to get one! I’m on my second Evo now and can’t see myself selling up anytime soon. I mean what other 4dr saloon car comes close for value, performance, handling, driving thrill, tunability, reliability and has such an awesome community following?
Got a favorite story about your Mitsubishi?
I’m trying to think of an interesting story but all I can think of right now is what happened recently when I blew up my engine! The car had recently done 45,000 miles. The engine was pretty much stock and has never been remapped. I was on a driver training day with CAT driver training at Millbrook proving ground. My instructor Colin and I were on Millbrook’s mile long straight. Colin was teaching me threshold breaking from high speed. I was on my final high speed run and was accelerating hard towards a target speed of 120mph before I had to brake. I must have been doing about 80mph, the engine was revving somewhere between 5000 and 5500rpm… the next thing I know…. BANG! Huge plumes of white smoke sparkling with tiny bits piston alloy pouring out of the bonnet vent. Not good :( Well that was that, the blown engine forced an abrupt end to my days training. The car was put on a flatbed whisked off to the sick bay at MG Autos. Upon closer examination it was found that I had thrown 2 rods – Ooops!
What are your goals for your Mitsubishi and how close are you to achieving them?
My goals right now is to get the car back on the road and to get the car back on track for track days and MLR sprint series action. My sponsors and I are currently putting together a forged engine so hopefully the car will be back bigger and better than before.
My futures goals are:
To win my class in the MLRSS.
To compete in the UK Time Attack series.
Both these goals are ambitious but “Aim for the moon. If you miss, you may hit a star”– W Clement Stone
What was your favorite modification and why?
My favourite mod to date is probably when MG Autos fitted my Evo with a SuperPro poly bush kit and aligned it to MG Autos fast-road & track spec. It’s amazing how a good bush kit and alignment can transform how the can drives.
Your mod list:
APS Dual Port BOV
Apexi Panel filter
AEM aluminium Oil Cap
Carbing aluminium slam panel cover
Magnecor silicon ignition leads
Kakimoto 3” Stainless Steel Cat back exhaust, 3”down pipe and decat
BC Racing RM coilovers (inverted type)
SuperPro Poly Bushes (full kit)
Cusco 5 point underbrace
Cusco rear strut brace
MG Autos Fast-road/track alignment
Road wheels – OEM Evo X (pictured but now sold). Raceline RL7 (now fitted, not pictured)
Road tyres – Falken FK452s
Sprint wheels – Volk CE28N
Sprint tyres – Toyo Proxes R888 (soft compound)
Ksport front brake kit (330mm- 8 piston)
Hel brake lines
Ferrodo DS2500 pads
Hel clutch line
Evo VI clear indicators
Front splitter centre section coloured black
Evo VI GSR interior
Alpine Head unit, amp and speakers
Tell us about something really exciting you’ve done with other Mitsubishi owners.
Probably the most exiting thing I’ve done with fellow Mitsubishi owners was MLR 500 last year in 2009. What’s MLR 500 I hear you ask? The most fun you’ll ever have Mitsubishi worth less than £500 is the answer! Basically it’s an endurance, autograss/banger race. You have to Google/YouTube it appreciate how much fun it is. Look out for the Tommi Mäkinen Edition Colt (that’s our team)….Oh yeah and you get to race against rival teams from the Subaru forums… oh yes!
What’s the best part about being a Mitsubishi owner? The most challenging?
The best part is knowing that you own a piece of rally history. I enjoy using my Evo for motorsports, after all it was a car born to compete. The most challenging thing is resisting the urge to spend money on mods.
What excites you about the coming year? (Your Mitsu and your community)
I’m excited about finishing off my forged build and seeing what I can do in the MLRSS.
The sprint series is a fantastic series within the UK Mitsubishi scene. It’s very competitive but at the same time really friendly and the banter is great. What other series lets you talk smack off the track and prove your skill in your car on the track?
How often do you get together with other Mitsubishi owners in person?
I consider myself to be active on the Mitsi scene. I attend many North West England regional meets and enjoy the national shows.
Your thoughts on those who part out otherwise salvageable cars?
This one is an interesting question. More often than not I think it makes sense to break a car. It allows a seller to recuperate as much money back as possible. Yes it’s sad that you’re taking a car off the road but you have to remember that the parts that come off a car that is broken help repair and keep many other cars on the road.
How do you feel building a Mitsubishi compares to building a Mitsubishi community?
I’d imagine both are satisfying for different reasons but the two difficult to compare.
How has your Mitsubishi build benefited from your involvement in the community?
I started off in the Mitsubishi community on EvoM, but I now have more involvement with the Mitsubishi Lancer Register. The MLR is a great community; I’ve learnt so much which has been inputted into current build and the direction of my future build. Hopefully I’ve passed some knowledge onto others and they’ve benefited from some of my advice too.
What’s next for your Mitsubishi?
Well as mentioned, first up is the new forged engine, a turbo upgrade and supporting mods. After I’ve finished playing there I plan on putting the car on a diet in order to shed some weight and improve the car’s power to weight ratio. Aside from the mods, I just want to get out there and use the car on track.
Who has helped you the most along the way with the car? Any mentors?
Aside from the members of EvoM and MLR, I would have to say the two people that have helped me the most are my two sponsors.
Firstly – Mathew Goode – AKA Madmat (and the rest of the team from MG Autos). They truly are “The Evolution Specialist” catering for everything from servicing to full engine builds. Aside from the incredible service, Mat and the MG Autos team share the same passion for evo motorsport. Like me they all like to get involved in a bit of MLRSS action.
The next person has to be Ross Walker AKA Ross W from Ross Sport. Ross is always there to help, his Evo knowledge is second to none, and he has this fantastic ability of sourcing the worlds finest parts to modify your Evo… all of which I seem to want. He’s also pretty damn good at building cars that go fast, particularly in the MLR’s 30-130 event!
Do you spend time on any Mitsubishi sites? Which ones?
I sure do. I practically live on the MLR but also like to use EvoM too.
Mitsubishi Lancer Register – www.lancerregister.com
EvolutionM – www.evolutionm.net
Are you on Twitter? Facebook? How can people find you online?
Yep – You can find me on Facebook. I’m not a fan of twitter.
Thank you, Karl, for sharing such an inspired story with us all. Hopefully we can find someone with an Evo VI to interview before the month’s out. (hint) Also, thank yous to Steve and Daz, aka: Monkeynuts and Raptor for the fine photos of Karl’s Evo used in this story.