Rob Kinnan
Brand Manager, Mustang Monthly
November 27, 2017

One of our favorite shows of the year (and by far our favorite indoor show) is the Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals, known to those who have been there as MCACN. The show is held at the Rosemont Convention Center in Chicago, a stone’s throw from O’Hare International Airport, and we’re always amazed at the quality of iron the organizer Bob Ashton pulls together every year.

Colin Comer’s 1969 Shelby G.T. 500 was one of the four EFI Mustangs on display.

The 2017 show, held November 18-19, was of particular interest to Mustang and Ford fans as it pulled together the Ford Drag Team Invitational and had another special display called the Kar-Kraft Invitational. For the Drag Team, Ashton said, “If you are a Ford Drag Race enthusiast, pay attention here! Back in 1969 Ford campaigned an East coast and a West coast drag team to put the spotlight on their “Win on Sunday, Sell on Monday” mantra. The Ford Drag Team consisted of four Mustangs and two Fairlane Cobras: three cars on the West Coast team with drivers Dick Wood and Ed Terry, and three on the East Coast team with drivers Hubert Platt and Randy Payne. We are pleased to announce we will be hosting FIVE of the original cars, plus several additional related cars along with an absolutely incredible display of Ford Drag Team memorabilia and parts. If you saw the collection of Shelby-related parts that Bob Perkins and Richard Ellis brought in a few years ago, then imagine a comparable collection relating specifically to the Drag Team! And here’s the real kicker; two of these cars are being shown for the very first time after extensive restorations, as Official MCACN Unveiling cars, Saturday morning!” Watch for Jerry Heasley’s story and video of the Ford Drag Team at this year’s show, with the unveilings.

Joe Armario (Hinsdale, IL) had the hood up and the air cleaner off of his gold 1968 G.T. 500 to give a clear view of the Conelec fuel injection, along with a display of original advertising explaining how it works. Can you believe this system actually used a transistorized computer attached to the back of the throttle body to control it…in 1968?!

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The Kar-Kraft Invitational featured real and documented Kar-Kraft cars (plus the one-of-one Boss Bronco, which was discovered but then sold by Cartech Books editor Wes Eisenchenk. You know Kar-Kraft from their involvement in the GT40 and Boss 429 programs, but they also did a wild King Cobra and two Cyclone Spoilers, which were also in the display. Ashton said, “We will also have one of the last 1970 conversion Shelby G.T. 500s, a Drag Pack convertible is a truly one-off car for several reasons. And that’s not all; Ed Meier is bringing back his Dyno Don Nicholson Boss 429 Cougar, and he has learned a whole lot since he showed it with us in our Barn Finds & Hidden Gems area a few years back. And of course, the display will feature some of the finest ‘69 and ‘70 Boss 429 Mustangs, including the Custom Speed Enterprises drag car!”

Grant Hukle’s (Mantachie, MS) ’69 G.T. 500 had it’s Conelec EFI system removed and replaced with a carburetor back in the day, but still has the plugs in the intake manifold where the injectors went, and a few other tell-tale marks that identify it as one of the EFI test prototypes. Chris Long, who’s father developed the Conelec system was on-hand to point out these markers and explain in more detail about the testing. Sadly, the business folded in the early 1970s, making these units rarer than hen’s teeth.

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Charlie Henry, who spent some time at Kar-Kraft and recently authored an incredible book about them, along with Co-worker Don Eichstaedt, were both in attendance to sign books and shake hands.

There were also four Shelby Mustangs that were used to R&D Conelec electronic fuel injection in the late 1960s, which we had heard existed but had never seen in person. That was a cool find! So check out the photos and prepare to drool, and watch for the 2018 MCACN dates to drop, since you’ll want to be there to see this stuff in person.

Bob Perkins brought his restored Hubert Platt Drag Team Mustang, which we chose for our Editor’s Pick for the show. Hubert’s son Allen was behind the car with shirts, books, die-casts, and DVDs of The Georgia Shaker.

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