Fastest Stick Shift Car? 2012 Ford Mustang Sets Drag Racing Record
Joel Steele made a name for himself after his 2012 Mustang became the first domestic, H-pattern manual transmission car to break into the 6s at FL2K earlier this year. That achievement made his car the fastest/quickest stock-block Coyote. Now he just upped the ante, becoming the overall fastest/quickest H-pattern car in the country, beating out Joel Granna’s Supra in a heads-up race this past weekend at the World Cup Finals—Import vs. Domestic.
Right off the trailer, Steele and team fought traction issues, but they discovered it was because their new bullhorn exhaust exits were leaking condensation onto the track ahead of the tires. They fixed that and made minor adjustments to the clutch before their last round of qualifying. “I was coming up to the staging lanes and saw Joel Grannas [previous overall stick-shift record holder] in the left lane so I jumped in the right. I thought I may not have another opportunity,” said Steele. “I couldn’t have asked for a better scenario; it was like a grudge race we set up three months prior.”
Steele made a 6.81 at 208 mph pass, beating out Grannas, then backed it up with a 6.81 at 210 mph in the first round of eliminations. A knocking noise ended their weekend early, however. The stock-block Coyote is heading back to engine builder TKM Performance, and Steele hopes to make the Mod Nationals this weekend.
The driveline features a Tick Performance Ultimate Race Trans based on a Tremec Magnum XL. It features a PPG dog-ring/faceplated gear set and Tick Performance billet front plate with integrated spray bar, which coats the front gears with oil. He leaves the line with the slipper clutch, but all the following shifts are clutchless, using the Holley Dominator ECU to cut torque between shifts.
Jonathan Atkins, owner of Tick Performance is Joel’s new tuner. Jonthan campaigns the GrubbWorm Camaro powered by a stock-block Gen-II LT1 with a forged, destroked rotating assembly and Precision Turbo Pro Mod 102mm single turbo. It also features the Tick Performance Ultimate Race Trans based on a T56 with G-Force faceplated gear set and Tick Performance billet front plate.
Right off the trailer, Atkins fought some intermediate traction issues, too. The team tried nitrous for the first time, but the car spun once the nitrous hit, so they opted against it for the remainder of the weekend. During Saturday’s qualifying, Jonathan laid 6.97 at 211 mph and a 6.96 at 208 mph during eliminations. That was his first time breaking into the 6’s, a goal the team has been chasing for over a year.
He fought his way through eliminations, running against Joel Grannas, who unfortunately blew an engine on their heads-up pass. Atkins spun right off the line and backed out. “My run was over when I noticed a fireball from Grannas’ car,” said Atkins. “So, I got back in, spun, let out, back in it again, and thought I blew my engine. It was the ugliest pass in drag racing history, but it put us in the finals.” Atkins and team finished in second place in the stick-shift class. -Photos By Josh Lambert and Lock It In Productions
Quickest and Fastest Stick Shift Car: Build Details
2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302: Engine
- Gen-1 Coyote stock block, unfilled
- Frankenstein ported stock heads and oversized valves
- Ford Performance Boss 302 crank, Manley rods, Wiseco pistons
- 16 Holley injectors, Dominator ECU, and Holley dash
- Twin Forced Inductions 76/83mm turbochargers
- TurboSmart wastegates and blowoff valves
- Runs on methanol from Renegade Performance and Lubricants
2012 Ford Mustang Boss 302: Drivetrain
- Tick Performance Ultimate Race Trans
- 4-speed conversion based on a Tremec Magnum XL
- Tick Performance Billet front plate and integrated front oil spray bar
- PPG billet dog-ring/faceplated gear set
- Hammer Concepts and Designs rear axle housing with Moser center section and axles
- MGW Shifter
Watch: 2020 Ford Shelby Mustang GT500 sets sub 11-second quarter mile!
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