Welcome to 2CarPros.
If the car starts with the fuel pump relay removed, my first suspect is the fuel pressure regulator is allowing the fuel pump to build too much pressure and basically flooding the engine. Chances are that is why you smelled fuel.
Before replacing the regulator, you really should confirm that the pressure is too high. Here is a link that explains how to check fuel pressure and the fuel pressure regulator:
Here are the manufacturer's specifications for fuel pressure:
Fuel Pressure (Key ON Engine OFF) .................... 337-379 kPa (49-55 psi)
If you determine the regulator is bad and allowing too much pressure to the fuel injectors, here are the directions for replacing it. The attached pictures correlate with the directions.
1. Relieve the fuel system pressure. Refer to Fuel Pressure Relief Procedure.
CAUTION: Refer to Gasoline/Gasoline Vapors Caution in Service Precautions.
2. Remove the air inlet grill in order to gain access to the fuel pressure regulator.
3. Place a shop towel under the fuel pressure regulator to absorb any lost fuel when removing the regulator.
4. Disconnect the atmospheric vent hose from the fuel pressure regulator.
5. Remove the fuel pressure regulator clamp bolt.
6. Spread the clamp only enough to allow the fuel pressure regulator to be removed.
7. Twist while pulling outward in order to remove the fuel pressure regulator from the fuel rail.
1. Apply a few drops of clean engine oil to the O-ring seals on the fuel pressure regulator.
2. Twist while pushing inward on the fuel pressure regulator, until fully seated against the fuel rail.
IMPORTANT: Be sure to locate the atmospheric vent toward the front of the engine on the fuel pressure regulator.
3. Position the clamp around both the fuel pressure regulator and the fuel rail.
4. Install the fuel pressure regulator clamp bolt.
NOTE: Refer to Fastener Notice in Service Precautions.
Tighten the fuel pressure regulator clamp bolt to 5 N.m (44 lb in).
5. Install the atmospheric vent hose on to the fuel pressure regulator port.
6. Using the scan tool turn ON the fuel pump to pressurize the system.
7. Check for fuel leaks.
8. Install the air inlet grill.
Let me know if this helps and what you find. If you have other questions, let me know.
Images (Click to enlarge)
Friday, June 7th, 2019 AT 10:00 PM