On Tuesday, May 18, we got a call from Justin Burcham of JPC who said he couldn't wait any longer that he located a 2011 5.0 GT in Virginia and was on his way to pick it up.
The plan was to thrash through the night in order to get to a drag strip on Wednesday in order to be first to the 10s. Burcham knew the guys at Evolution Performance, credited as being the first in the 11s, were heading to the track on Thursday with their car. So, for Burcham there was one shot to do it--Wednesday night. The original plan was to do it at Cecil County Drag way (Rising Sun, Maryland), but he didn't want to risk someone calling Evolution about the events unfolding, and thus, forcing them hauling the car to Cecil. After all, the Evolution car was just tuned up and ready for action at a moment's notice. So the adventure to the 10s was done in true street racer fashion, under a veil of secrecy.
Burcham called in a huge favor from Jason Miller of Maryland International Raceway (MIR) to open the track for these runs. Jason prepped the track and got it ready as he waiting for us to arrive.
According to Burcham, the mechanical side of the preparation was easy, but it wasn't bolt-on stuff and go. There would be no tuning available, so a wet nitrous system was used and along with parts that were on the shelf at JPC Racing. They added new rear components like aftermarket 31-spline axles, spool, and 4.56 gears. The suspension was replaced with drag shocks, struts, and Metco control arms. When they tore into the car the guys didn't realize the rear suspension had different bolt holes and hardware requirements. There were a few areas where chassis parts for '05-'10 cars didn't fit so they modified as they went along. They also added Bogart rims all around--26x10.5-inch slicks for NA runs and 28x10.5-inch slicks for nitrous, both being Mickey Thompson rubber. The passenger seat was removed and a Kirkey seat added for the driver.
On the horsepower front, a custom JPC/Insane Racing Fabrication X-pipe was made on Wednesday of the build, and it utilizes the stock cats, keeping it emissions legal. A pair of Bassani 2.5-inch mufflers were also bolted on. In that trim, without any ECU tuning, the 5.0L threw down 372 rwhp. The shop then added a wet nitrous system with a baby shot. Burcham whacked it once on the chassis dyno and the result was 430 rwhp.
At the track Burcham made two naturally aspirated runs, the first resulted in a missed shift (12.20 at 112 mph) and the second was an aborted hit. At that point team JPC said let's just get to the good stuff. They swapped the 28-inch tall slicks, added VP 110 fuel, and opened the nitrous bottle. Burcham let it rip to an 11.31 at 122 mph in what looked like an effortless run. On the way back he made the decision to up the nitrous a little bit. And once the car was cooled down came pass numbers three and four. On the juice the car left with the wheels up and with a 1.46 60-foot. Burcham banged all five, yes five, and cruised to a 10.96 at 125 mph. It was a great effort and a great result and our hats are off to Burcham, his team and our man, Mike Galimi for making the last-minute haul, involving over 10 hours of travel to get the job done.
You can read about all the details of this amazing feat in the September 2010 issue of Muscle Mustangs and Fast Fords, on sale July 27, 2010.