1800rwhp, twin-turbo LSX-powered HR Holden panel van

Aaron Gregory enjoys terrorising fellow no-prep racers in his beastly 1800hp HR panel van

Photographers: Ashleigh Wilson

If you’ve been drag racing on the east coast in recent years, you likely would’ve run into Aaron Gregory’s no-prep H3LLRZR HR panel van, which packs an 1800rwhp punch. Aaron drew inspiration for his van from another well-known drag-racing HR – none other than the late Craig ‘Shonky’ Brewer’s iconic ‘Frog Stomp’ van.

First published in the June 2024 issue of Street Machine

“I thought it was so cool the first time I saw it running in APSA as a young fella,” Aaron says of Craig’s HR. “Most people thought vans had to be down the beach with surfboards on them, but seeing Frog Stomp, I thought how cool it was to take a van racing.”

Aaron is the founder and owner of ASG Motorsports in Coomera, Queensland. He’d always wanted a race van of his own, so during COVID times, he started looking for a new project car and stumbled on the HR on Facebook Marketplace.

“Finding a windowless van wasn’t easy, and then this one popped up at a salvage yard, but the old guy wanted far too much for it,” Aaron recalls. “I waited nearly two years for him to accept a reasonable price, and then we dug it and all the parts out of the yard and got it back to the workshop.”

Naturally, as soon as Aaron cracked open the HR, rust was the word of the day. “We just kept finding more – the floors, inside the sills. Everything was gone,” he says. “Funnily enough, the floor wasn’t even spot-welded in properly from new; I stomped on it and it fell out!”

Needless to say, everything was replaced and reinforced, with Aaron setting this thing up as a speed demon from the get-go. “We did things like the tube front end because we needed that high-speed stability, and HR suspension and brakes aren’t much chop,” he says. As a result, the HR copped an IFS conversion with rack-and-pinion, using Menscer coil-overs and a Strange rack. The chassis got a thorough makeover, and a new firewall was made as well.

In the rear, the chassiswork is just as intricate, with a Pro9 diff housing, Afco Big Gun X coil-overs, and enough room to fit a 28×10.5 Mickey Thompson ET Drag tyre on a 12in-wide wheel. “We’ll change the rear rubber and wheels depending on what surface and type of racing we’re doing,” says Aaron. “For the photoshoot, it’d just come from no-prep, so the full 15×12 with the 28 ET was still on it.”

Aaron also integrated a full chrome-moly rollcage into the architecture, although you’ll need a second glance to notice it in the cabin. “We tried to keep it as discreet as possible; that’s just how we build things,” he says.

The powertrain is equally as impressive, Aaron using one of ASG’s tried-and-true turbo LS combos for the van. “It’s one we’re very familiar with,” says Aaron. “It works well and doesn’t give us any problems.” A cast GM LSX block has been equipped with a Callies Magnum crank, Oliver Super Speedway conrods and CP pistons for 427ci of displacement. Aaron uses one of his own ASG turbo solid-roller sticks, sealed in by a pair of Mast Motorsports LS3 Black Label heads. Topping the package is a Plazmaman manifold, which sees up to 38psi of boost from the mirror-image pair of Precision PT7675 turbos.

“We run it on methanol at the [race] events that allow it, and then E85 for everything else,” says Aaron. “The [Haltech] Nexus [R5 VCU] is tuned to account for both. I spent plenty of time setting up all the right tables to deal with just about any scenario.”

On that 38psi, the package has churned out a whopping 1827hp to the hubs. “It’s not as light as people would think, with all the extra steel for the van part,” Aaron says. “We scaled it at 1620kg in race trim, so it does need the grunt.”

Everything but the finer panel, paint and interior trim on the HR was done in-house at ASG. Completed in a matter of months, the van has been terrorising drag strips for the past three years. “We do a lot of no-prep events, and it’s a consistent four-second car,” Aaron says. “We’ve taken wins in the OG275 and OG315 classes a few times, and also won the small-tyre class during the shootout for the Street Outlaws TV show at Willowbank. After that win, Farmtruck and AZN invited us for a heads-up flashlight race, which we won as well. That was an amazing experience.”

With Willowbank still out of action due to resurfacing works at the time of writing, the HR is yet to make a representative quarter-mile pass. “It’s done 152mph to half-track and a 7.8 to the 1000ft, so there’s plenty of potential there,” Aaron says.

As for the van’s H3LLRZR moniker, that was bestowed upon the HR by Aaron’s wife. “We wanted a name for the Street Outlaws shoot, because they name all their cars,” says Aaron. “We red-tinted the headlights for the race to help it stand out – we can just pull it off when we get tired of the look,” he says. Until then, it’s a safe bet H3LLRZR will continue to live up to its name.


Paint:Silver Mink
Brand:427ci LSX
VCU:Haltech Nexus R5
Turbos:Twin Precision PT7675 mirror-image
Heads:Mast Motorsports LS3 Black Label
Camshaft:ASG turbo solid-roller
Conrods:Oliver Super Speedway
Crank:Callies Magnum
Oil pump:Melling HV
Fuel system:Kinsler pump
Cooling:Alloy radiator, SPAL fans
Exhaust:3.5in stainless
Ignition:Haltech IGN-1A coil packs
Gearbox:Precision Automatics BTE Powerglide
Diff:Pro9, 35-spline axles, 3.5:1 gears
Front:Menscer struts
Rear:Live axle, four-link, Afco coil-overs
Brakes:Wilwood discs and four-piston calipers (f & r)
Master cylinder:Wilwood
Rims:Weld V-Series; 17×4.5 (f), 15×12 (r)
Rubber:Mickey Thompson ET Front 26×4.00R17 (f), Mickey Thompson ET Drag 28×10.50R15 (r)

My family and friends; Cleo; Charlie; Dave; Jamie; Mark; Pinno and Trent; Oz Trade Paint Supplies; Plazmaman Racing; Haltech; GFB; WSD; Full Circle Restorations; all the staff at ASG Motorsports; Brett the HR Guy for all the parts.