MICK Arnold is no stranger to making big power with V8s and turbos, and while his sights have been set firmly on being the quickest IRS car Down Under, and having run a 4.90 over the eighthmile, he has struggled for traction in his stunning HSV VE Maloo.

The car has run a best of 7.60@192mph over the quarter with the beefed-up IRS, but has continued to blow the tyres off in the front half of the track. With the goal of running sixes, Mick has decided it’s time to move on.

The VE is powered by a near-identical engine combination as his HT Holden ute, which has run the quarter-mile at 197mph with a single 94mm turbo on a 400ci small-block Chev and 315 radial.

“I realised that the old girl would have long-term limitations so I built the VE, hoping it to be much lighter and capable of going into the sixes,” Mick says. “Sadly, the car has ended up at around 3500lb with me in it, despite lightweight carbon panels, polycarbonate windows and stripping it out. The triple-layer chassis section makes these cars very heavy and I couldn’t seem to get a handle on the IRS deal despite running a 1.26 in the 60-foot.

“I’ve tried all types of shock and tyre pressure changes, but can’t get it right to the 330-foot mark, so I set a deadline of the Kenda Radial meeting in October to get it sorted. Now I will move to a four-link rear-end, but still on a 315 radial.”

The small-block is making no shortage of steam. Built by Mick and his mates, the Dart block is swinging a Callies crank, Carrillo rods with JE pistons and 15-degree cylinder heads – all top-shelf stuff.

The modified Racer Pro manifold is fitted with 16 ID2000 injectors and is force-fed by a pair of 68/70 turbochargers that are currently pushing around 30psi of boost. In addition to the injectors, there is another pair of Bosch 440 injectors feeding methanol into the intake plumbing to further cool the intake charge. These are boost and rpm-activated.

Data-wise the car has every sensor available and Mick is running Link G4+ Thunder ECUs in both cars, simply because it’s what he knows and is used to.

“When I started building the VE the plan was to just have one car, and I will try to sell the HT shortly and put all my time and money into the VE, rather than trying to race both,” Mick says. s