Muscle Mustangs & Fast Fords
World Ford Challenge 9 - Nine Was Divine
World Ford Challenge 9 rocked St. Louis as records were set and history made.
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When racers and fans drove through the gates at St. Louis International Raceway this past spring, the Mobil 1-World Ford Challenge crew had tweaked their racing format to include Outlaw 10.5 and Outlaw Drag Radial action. This was good because it set the stage for several records as well as providing a punch of excitement not seen since the early years of WFC competition. This was in addition to the normally insane lineup of Pro Mod 5.0, Street Outlaw, and Wild Street categories.
While Pro Mod 5.0 was paying $35,000 to the winner, Pro Outlaw 10.5W, Street Outlaw, Outlaw Drag Radial, Wild Street, and Real Street ran for smaller dollars. But the racers would agree that the bragging rights associated with winning a WFC title outweighs any cash rewards.
With prestige, respect, and honor on the line, racers had their Mustangs on kill in St. Louis. Case in point was David Wolfe whose Outlaw Drag Radial Mustang set the world record for a drag radial-equipped drag car in the final round of eliminations. Wolfe blasted to an amazing 7.40 at 197 mph and afterwards hinted there was even more lurking in his turbocharged Stang. The Pro Mod 5.0 showdown featured the quickest side-by-side pass in the history of WFC when John Nobile and Frank Gugliotta both ran bottom 6.40s in the final round. It was a match-up that Nobile won by a holeshot.
The other heads-up classes featured a mid-seven-second Wild Street contingent; several of the 28x10.5-equipped Mustangs in Street Outlaw were in the mid-sevens as well. The new Pro Outlaw 10.5W class didn't disappoint, with six-second, 200-mph performances from back-half cars running on those narrow sneakers.
The usual cast of characters was present in the form of the large Open Comp category, Modular Street, three truck classes (Pro Lightning, Street Lightning, and Diesel Challenge), and an enormous bracket racing program that spanned three days and offered a nice reward for winners.
If racing wasn't your bag, then you could feel at home on the gigantic show-car grounds. We don't know how the WFC organizers do it, but it was the largest car show we have seen in the event's nine-year history. The manufacturer's midway offered show special pricing, collectables, WFC memorabilia, and whatever else you needed to make your Ford experience a fun one.