According to the NMRA rulebook, "True Street is a racing class for mildly modified to heavily modified high-performance, Ford-based street vehicles that are street-certified and able to drive over a 30-mile distance. All Ford vehicles from 1964 through present are permitted. Any Ford based engine, and any number or type of power adders are permitted. Vehicles must be registered, licensed, and insured..."
Hurricanes and tornados are nature’s most violent exhibition of authority, wreaking havoc on the southern plains of Oklahoma and coastlines of Texas. Hurricanes can pack winds of 180 mph and dump 10-20 inches of rainfall in a 24-hour period. While tornados can be 1-mile wide and gouge a 50-mile track with winds up to 300 mph!
The only thing worse than a hurricane or tornado is both! In 2005, Hurricane Rita hit land just north of Houston Raceway Park with Category 5 intensity, packing winds up to 180 mph and dumping 15 inches of rainfall. The 36 hours that followed spawned a record 55 tornados across southeast Texas and southwest Mississippi--a double-dose of 180-mph terror!
Joel’s car tickled the 7-second...
Joel’s car tickled the 7-second zone with lots of runs in the 8-teens on 275/60-15 Mickey Thompson drag radials. A switch to the bigger 315/60-15 allowed Angel to hit the tire a bit harder, catapulting the team into the magical 7-second zone. The Weld Racing double-bead-lock Aluma Star wheels ensure the tires won’t spin on the wheel while propelling the hefty 3,350-pound steed to 1.40 60-foot times.
When the NMRA blew into Houston Raceway Park, they never expected a triple-dose of quarter-mile terror like the Tex-Mex crew brought. This bunch’s sick ’93 coupe was classified as an F4 with 180-mph intensity. Though there was some rainfall, it allowed just enough time to knockout the competition while the eye of the storm passed over the raceway.
Southern-Texas-native Joel Cura knows what it’s like to weather the storm. He is the southern Texas regional manager for LeFluer Transportation, one of the largest non-emergency medical transportation providers in the country. No matter how inclement the weather becomes, LaFluer deploys about 8,000 shuttle trips a day for patients in need of medical care.
Emergencies require speedy transport, and Joel knows all about fast. He got his start in Mustang racing nearly 15 years ago playing with the guys at Texasdragracing.com, where their Wild Street racing crowned one king and all challengers were summoned to a mall or burger joint of the king’s choice, then had to cruise 20-30 miles to the raceway for a shot at the title. He had a Wolfe-built ’86 racecar that he horse-traded from Angel Padilla. It was a test mule for Cartech Turbo Systems. Longtime buddy, Joe Rivera of EFI Motorsports got the car running low 9s, with one fateful bonzai 8.90 pass before wadding it up at Houston Raceway Park.
As fate would have it, Pro Turbo Kits had started a ’93 coupe project car, complete with a starter cage, four-cylinder powerplant and lots of Texas body acne, but decided to let Joel finish it, so the journey began. Seabisquit was upgraded to a state of the art SFI 25.5 chassis with stock type suspension at So Tex Racecars in San Antonio.
Lifelong friend and comrade Angel Padilla pilots Joel’s new steed to 30-mile cruises, both to defend his Texasdragracing.com crown and compete in NMRA True Street competition. The Tex-Mex crew raised the bar in Mustang street-car competition by running three back-to-back 7-second passes with a 7.92 at 184-mph best, the first 7-second passes in the history of the class! 5.0
When you’re pumping out over...
When you’re pumping out over 1,300 hp, things can go wrong in a hurry. A good set of Auto Meter Pro Comp series gauges can be the difference between a grenaded engine and an inexpensive set of rings. An Auto Meter gauge panel replaces the A/C vents, just as the Painless Power Panel neatly replaces the radio with switches for engaging the starter, fuel pump, water pumps, ignition power, and fans.
Residing behind the passenger...
Residing behind the passenger seat is the intercooler reservoir and a complete fire-suppression system to protect the driver. Safety has always been one of Joel’s main concerns during the build with lifelong friend Angel Padilla behind the wheel.
5.0 Tech Specs
Engine and Drivetrain
Block Dart Iron Eagle, 8.2-in deck height, cast-iron
Displacement 377 ci
Cylinder Heads Trick Flow High Port 225, aluminum
Camshaft Comp Cams, Central Texas Motorsports custom spec
Intake Manifold Edelbrock Super Victor 8.2 EFI w/Wilson 4500 cast elbow
Throttle Body 90mm Accufab
Power Adder Pair of GT-42 76mm Precision Turbochargers
Exhaust CNG, 1-in primary, Stainless Steel
Fuel System 160-lb/hr injectors, Edelbrock fuel rails, Weldon 2035 fuel pump and regulator
Transmission Powerglide prepped by David Key Transmissions
Converter Neal Chance Racing Converters, 10-inch Pro Mod bolt-together w/aluminum drive cover
Rearend 8.8-in factory w/9-in ends and brackets jig-welded by Mike Clark at So. Tex Racecars; Moser 3.27 gears, spool and 35-spline axles; and TA Performance main cap support cover
The SFI25.5 chassis fits cleanly...
The SFI25.5 chassis fits cleanly in the ’93 Mustang body, with lots of extra bars added to ensure driver safety during their 7-second mission. With the intercooler in the back seat, the tubing runs cleanly under the lightweight Kirkey passenger seat, just in case any disbelievers want a ride!
FAST sequential, Auto Meter datalogger, and NLR AMS-1000 boost controller
MSD Digital 7-plus ignition, Pro Billet distributer and HVC II coil
Auto Meter, Pro Comp Series
Chassis and Suspension
Chassis So Tex Racecars, SFI25.5
A-arms AJE K-member and A-arms
Struts AJE, non-adjustable
Wheels Weld Racing, Aluma Star
Tires Mickey Thompson
Brakes Aerospace, four-piston drag brakes
Shocks Strange Engineering coilovers, double-adjustable
Chassis South Tex Racecars, stock type w/coilover brackets
Traction Devices South Tex Racecars anti-squat bar
Wheels Weld Racing, Aluma Star double bead-locks
Tires Mickey Thompson 315/60-15-in drag radial
Brakes Aerospace, four-piston caliper
The MSD Digital 7-plus ignition...
The MSD Digital 7-plus ignition and NLR AMS-1000 boost controller are critical extensions of the FAST sequential tuning software. Super Street Outlaw legend Mike Murillo evaluates all the data from the Auto Meter datalogger and makes the critical adjustments to the boost controller to keep the big drag radials hooked past the 180-mph mark.
The guys from Central Texas...
The guys from Central Texas Motorsports constructed a nasty 5.0-based, 377-cube motor. Avenger 230cc Trick Flow High-Ports top the combo and CNG Fabrication stainless-steel headers feed the twin 76mm Precision turbochargers.
Joel Cura says they would...
Joel Cura says they would never have eclipsed the historical mark without the Tex Mex Mix Posse, which consists of: (top row, left to right) Fido Mendoza, Robert Mancha, David Key, owner Joel Cura, driver Angel Padilla, Severo Cantu; (bottom, left to right) Darius McLaughlin, Carlos Salazar, Ubence Escobar, Ruben Garibay. He also credits getting the bug from turbo pioneer Joe Rivera, the tuning magic of Mike Murillo, and the support of his family—Laura, Aleida, and father, Leonel, may he rest in peace.