5.0 Mustang & Super Fords
2011 NMRA Season Preview
What you need to know as we head into the 2011 drag-racing season
Newcomer Jim St. Charles rattled some cages in the '09 Factory Stock war with his new '03 Cobra, then he moved up to the Pure Street ranks with an unorthodox carbureted mod-motor combo. He knocked down wins in his first two appearances, which included the first 9-second pass of the class! Next, Pure Street hot-shoe Shawn Johnson took the reigns and galloped on to collect the trophy in the last three events in his St. Charles' Pro Tree Racecars Cobra. Shawn collected his first championship since moving up from his Factory Stock. Steve Gifford's black Modular Depot-sponsored '98 Cobra had a great season, frequenting the final round twice, but overshadowed by the phenomenal year of the Pro Tree Racecars entries. Brandon Alsept's wild Wrap Warehouse '98 Mustang will be out to play for keeps in 2011. He went to the final dance in four of the five events he attended, taking home the gold once and missing the runner-up spot in the championship chase by a mere 20 points.
Factory StockThis entry-level class is the bolt-on-only class for fuel-injected cars, yet it's one of the most contested in the NMRA. It also serves as a stepping stone to quicker classes.
However, the class has evolved into a class as complex as the NHRA stock ranks, where go-fast secrets are closely guarded. Combatants must run BFG Comp/G-force TA or Nitto NT555R street drag radials.
2010 Class Record:
ET: Tommy Godfrey, 10.89 seconds
MPH: Tommy Godfrey, 122.59
Tommy Godfrey solidified his dominance in the class by becoming the first Factory Stock racer to break into the 10-second zone with a 10.89! His winning streak continued with five trips to the finals and three wins en route to his fourth consecutive championship. Carlos Sobrino surprised all in his former patrol car by finding the winner's circle for the first time in his NMRA racing career. He's been inching away at the field for several years; now he appears to be a serious threat to all. Jay Dold's MV Performance-sponsored '03 Mach 1 grabbed the gold at Atco against the all-conquering Tommy Godfrey. Matt Amrine went two for three in final-round dances, once with a GT-40 small-block and once with a modular Four-Valve. Look out when he stays with one combo. Alan Cain's hatch, John Leslie Jr.'s coupe, and Rick Walsh's coupe are the next two contenders patiently waiting for the kings to falter.
Modular MuscleFor bored modular-powered bracketeers and test 'n' tune junkies tired of handicap starts, this class offers Pro-Tree, handicap-style racing. You must qualify with your elapsed time and are allowed a 0.10 breakout on race day. Modulars are center stage to showcase the performance potential of the overhead-camshaft engines. Don't look for an easy go of it here-the fields are big and the racing is intense.
Modular-racing veteran Gary Parker lays down some of the best performances we have ever seen in handicap racing, with sickening 60-foot times in the teens to oh-20s. Rarely is he more than 0.03 second off his qualifying time. Gary won the first four of five events and captured to title with a runner-up in the season finale. Donnie Bowles Jr.'s '05 star-spangled, 9-second 'Stang and Susan Roush McClenaghan's She-Devil Motorsports '10 natural gasser both went one for two in final-round appearances. Canadian Randy Mounce's '05 Mustang, reigning-champ Reggie Burnette Jr.'s '00 'Stang, and Joseph Marini's stroker '05 will be on the hunt for the Roush big guns.