This past weekend, rookie driver Eric Swarr ventured onto a mile long WWII-vintage Army airbase strip in Maxton, NC with one goal in mind: set an East Coast Timing Association (ECTA) Blown Fuel Super Street land speed record. His ammunition? A 2006 Ford GT Supercar, owned by Bob Self and sponsored by AmericanMuscle and Swarr Automotive.
Nearly everyone is familiar with the concept of land speed records, and for the most part, when you hear about a really eye popping speed run, it’s coming from Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah. Here’s a little trivia factoid. The quest for land speed records actually started on the East Coast in the 1920′s and 30′s on the hard sands of Daytona Beach, Fl. When most speed trials started moving out West, a void was left on the East Coast. ECTA was formed to fill that void, and they selected an abandoned runway in Maxton, NC as the staging ground for speed record runs.
Saturday and early Sunday runs by Swarr were part of the ECTA rookie development program. He first had to make 125 MPH and 150 MPH runs on Saturday, to satisfy ECTA that he could safely pilot the vehicle. On Sunday, he made one last development run of 175 MPH, and then was given a single opportunity to open it up, and break 200 MPH. And open it up he did…
The voicemail on my office phone was time stamped at 3:17AM, and the frantic message that followed was left in an almost unintelligible whimper:
“Dude. You are so not gonna to believe this. Check your email first thing in the morning.”
In an encore performance, a Mustang is once again pacing a major NASCAR Sprint Cup race. The recently unveiled 2011 Mustang V6 has been selected as the pace car for the the Food City 500, coming up this Sunday at Bristol International Speedway.
This is the second time in the current NASCAR Sprint Cup season that a Mustang has paced the field. In February, the 2011 5.0 GT was piloted by NASCAR legend Richard Petty during the pace lap of the Daytona 500.
So what makes the second time so special? No one can remember when two Fords (much less two Mustangs) were selected for pace car duties in a NASCAR single season. What we’re witnessing is recognition of Ford’s commitment to the Mustang, and to continue offering a thrilling ride to the every day performance car enthusiast.
(Ed. note: A few weeks back, we posted a brief story on what we felt was a great event – a couple who discovered a mutual love, Ford Mustangs, and took it to the next level. They were married on February 21, 2010 at a Ford dealership in St. Augustine, Florida. And unbeknown to us at the time, AmericanMuscle even had a very important role in the event! Read about that role, below.
AmericanMuscle spoke with Mr. and Mrs. Cox after their brief honeymoon…)
AM: This is such an intriguing story. How did the two of you happen to meet?
We’re always cooking up something at AmericanMuscle to help our loyal customers take their rides to the next level. What’s on the front burner this week? BamaChips and AmericanMuscle are rocking the aftermarket performance industry by joining forces to create and deliver precision custom tunes for Mustangs. The result? Bama Custom Tuning at American Muscle. This exclusive partnership integrates world renowned custom tunes from BamaChips with AmericanMuscle’s award winning customer service.
Whether on the street or at the strip, Mustang owners know the benefits of custom tuning their cars – more raw power and better performance. When fractions of a second can make the difference, every bit of horsepower counts. Still, for many Mustang owners, the concept of “custom performance tuning” has been kind of exotic and cloaked in mystery (sorta like our Mustang girls). We’re gonna make it simple for you…