October 7, 2009

For the third year now Ford Racing has invited select Mustang magazines to participate in its annual Ford Racing Invitational, where we get to beat on its products and come away with a better understanding of what it has in store for Mustang owners like you. From suspensions to exhaust, blowers to wheels, the lineup of Mustangs it had featured many of the top-selling products. Even a few '10 Mustangs were available, including a GT500. We scored this yellow '08 example (see below), wearing big brakes, suspension, GT Supercar wheels (fronts at all four corners), and the Ford Racing/Whipple supercharger. Defending our win from last year meant coming in hard and not giving up an inch, while also learning to drive a new car with 550 hp. Qualifying went down on Friday, where we got several runs in. My best light, a 0.094, put me right in the middle of the ladder, getting me in the lanes first thing Saturday for eliminations. Coming into the water box, I was lined up with Sam Abuelsamid from Autoblog.com, someone I put on the trailer last year on my way to the winner's circle. I guess that payback-is-a-you-know-what saying holds true, as I came out of the burnout and staged the yellow GT and promptly sputtered off the line when the tree came down. Turns out our failure to launch wasn't entirely my fault as I realized upon hitting the return road I had lost the serpentine belt (no power steering, water pump, or alternator). So I had no blower either and the engine didn't quite run how it should when I mashed the go pedal, screwing up my launch. At least the trophy did stay with the Source Interlink Media Tampa, Florida, office (Steve Baur from Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords went all the way this year) and we hope to get it back next year. Check out our website for more photos of the Invitational shenanigans.

Photo Gallery

View Photo Gallery

Photo Gallery

View Photo Gallery

Photo Gallery

View Photo Gallery