Well, the event has come and gone and the Justang performed better than we expected! We busted our asses to get the car done in the last week before the event and thankfully it paid off. How did we do? Did the Justang survive? Will the Justy enthusiasts world ever be the same? Read on to find out!
We'll just cut to the chase and give you the numbers, becuase we know you're just dying to know. The Justang did really well for our first time out to the GRM Challenge coming in 4th in the Autocross, 17th in the Drag race, placing 4th overall in the Concours judging and coming in 6th overall for the entire event, win!
The Justang did better than we could have imagined in the autocross, in the hands of one of the Pro-drivers it absolutely rocketed through most of the course. We were limited by too much rear spring, a very front biased brake setup and not enough front roll stiffness. Even so, we beat out 56 other competitors for the 4th place finish, and we were very pleased to hear a lot of good feedback from the 2 Pro drivers who got behind the wheel of the Justang. It was nothing but praise, with some helpful tips to make it even faster. We even had the pleasure of ex-Indy driver Al Unser Jr. asking to drive the car and taking it around the autocross course a couple times. His words when he got out of the Justang were, "Wow, that was a lot of fun, you guys built a great car". Thanks Al!
The drag race is where we were let down, our Hoosier A7s were simply not up to the task of sticking to the drag strip, we spun in 1st, 2nd, 3rd and even 4th at the end of the track. Getting sideways at the end of a drag strip at 100mph is a bit of a pucker moment. Our best was a 15.8 at 100mph, and that was babying it and feathering the throttle down the track to try and find some grip. We feel the car had a solid mid 13 second run in it, and maybe a low 13s with some luck. We made a rookie mistake and we paid for it, losing at least 2 seconds to the other drivers. A few of the other teams were inquiring what our issue was and after telling them we were running autocross slicks we kept getting the same reply, "oh yeah we did that our first year too, they don't work very well". Yeah, they don't. Next year, drag slicks are on the list as a must.
The next day brought new hope, as Concours judging brought us back up into the running with a very high score. The judges liked our attention to detail on the body-swap and our racecar-esque paintjob. Obviously the idea of a Justy/Mustang combination was impressive enough for them as it was. We got high marks and some pats on the back for a great first showing. To say we were proud parents of our Justang baby is an understatement.
Circuit Motorsports ended up taking the win for Rookie of the Year (highest placing newbies) and the Challengers' Choice. There was a blind vote handed in by each challenger team to vote for their favorite car at the event, and the Justang won! It was very popular in the grid and people were constantly walking by to take a look and ask questions. We felt very welcomed at the event and the camaraderie and sportsmanship was reassuring, we felt right at home with all the other car guys and girls!
We are definitely planning on going to the $2016 challenge, and we already have a list of improvements and upgrades we want to make to the Justang. The trouble now will be fitting it all in the budget, so stay tuned for more out of our Justang build everyone!
Circuit Motorsports is a full-service performance shop located in Orlando, Florida who specializes in Subaru Performance. We offer full chassis builds, track setup, engine builds, tuning and more, check us out at www.circuitmotorsports.net
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