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What’s Inside BES’ New 698-Inch Ford in Nick Bacalais’ 1996 Mustang!
"The goal is to run 4.50s or faster, in order to be competitive," Bacalis said when discussing the anticipated performance. Making a legit 1,500 hp and 1,100 lb-ft of torque, this mountain motor should be close.
In a world where more power is just a turn of a boost knob, a smaller supercharger pulley swap, or bigger nitrous jet, the Bacalis, Bischoff, Mosher juggernaut is looking toward the best that Mother Nature has to offer for their 275 radial racing efforts.
The billet LSM engine block features a 5-inch bore spacing. It's that extra space between the cylinders that allows you to build engines this big. The BES Racing group punched this engine's bores to 4.750 inches and combined that with a Bryant billet steel crank that features a 4.925-inch stroke. Ross Racing pistons provide a static compression ratio of 16.7:1, Total Seal rings maintain the proper seal, and titanium Crower connecting rods complete the rotating assembly. An ATI balancer keeps it all smooth when the engine is singing at 9,000 rpm. A Daley six-stage dry-sump oiling system and Moroso two-piece oil pan ensures the engine is lubricated with Valvoline racing oil.
For a naturally aspirated engine to crank out 1,500 hp, cylinder heads need to flow a ton of air, and the BES Racing Pro Stock Wedge cylinder heads seem well suited to the task, though we couldn't pry the specifics out of Bacalis. The Victory titanium valves measure 2.700 and 1.85 inches, intake and exhaust. Bacalis also wouldn't give up the cam specs, but admitted the LSM 65mm cam core carries lobes with more than 1.20-inch lift! The rest of the valvetrain is comprised of Manton 5/8- and 9/16-inch pushrods (exhaust/intake), Jesel 1.062-inch-diameter keyway lifters, and custom-made Jesel rocker arms with aluminum arms on the intake and steel exhaust rockers. The valvespring setup is unique with PSI triple springs and Manley components to help keep the valves under control.
The huge scoop sticking out of the hood is normally found in the A/Fuel Dragster ranks in NHRA drag racing. If you're unfamiliar with A/Fuel Dragster, it's essentially a naturally aspirated version of a nitro-burning Top Fuel motor. According to Bacalis, it's the largest throttle-body they could find, has two butterflies, and measures a robust 12.5 inches long and 7 inches wide! It is perhaps the most unique, talked-about addition to their engine, and it's mounted to a custom BES Racing sheetmetal intake with short runners and a huge plenum.
Fuel System/Engine Management
Holley's Dominator EFI is the preferred engine-management system, as BES Racing runs that same unit on its in-house Pro Modified engine program as well as other projects. The high-octane racing fuel is delivered to the Holley 120 lb/hr injectors in large volume from an Aeromotive Pro Series belt-driven fuel pump. Russell lines and fittings are used exclusively throughout the Mustang.
RPM Transmissions are the masterminds behind the two-speed TH400 automatic, and it is said to be the lightest one ever built for drag racing. A bolt-together torque converter from Ultimate Converter Concepts will give the engine the ability climb in the revs while on the transbrake, but have very little slippage in the high-rpm range.
The SN95 Mustang has been treated to the typical modifications for a fast, stock-suspension car. The rollcage was built to SFI 25.3 specifications by Gary Rohe Race Cars. The rear suspension is considered "stock-ish," with factory mounting locations that feature multiple holes for the proper geometry. The rear shocks are AFCO's double-adjustable coilovers, mounted inboard similar to a four-link suspension setup, and they help plant the 275/60R15 Mickey Thompson ET Radial Pro tires. The front suspension has bolt-on K-member and A-arms with coilover front struts. The front part of the chassis has been heavily modified for weight savings and to fit the extra-large big-block.