No stranger to speed, having previously raced alcohol-burning go-karts on dirt tracks with his sons, Sunrise Beach, Missouri, resident Todd Bennett has turned his once street car into a full-tilt VP Racing Fuels Street Outlaw entry and plans to debut his recently re-focused 2013 Mustang GT at the Inaugural NMRA Gateway Rumble presented by HPJ Performance in St. Louis in May.
In 2015, Bennett was looking to buy a car to cruise around on the street with when a friend told him about this 2013 Gotta Have It Green Mustang that was available for sale.
“The guy had just put twins on it and it only had 1,800 miles on the car,” Bennett explained. “I bought the car with twin 62s and it had a Turbo 400 transmission, and we went to twin 67s and a better motor and then went to a single Pro Mod 94mm turbo.”
Now on his fourth engine build, Bennett worked with JPC Racing and RGR Engines to put together a dry deck, dry sump, Voodoo block and a Street Outlaw-legal Pro Mod 88mm turbo.
Backing the capable DOHC engine is a Turbo 400 transmission built by Proformance Racing Transmissions, and JPC Racing handled the rest of the fabrication on the car.
“I got carried away with it and I’m pretty picky with stuff,” Bennett told us. “We built it as more of a show car than a race car. We went the extra mile under the hood painting and powdercoating things.”
Bennett had the JPC crew swap out a lot of parts for carbon fiber versions, which provided a weight savings of about 550 lbs. Optic Armor helped out with lightweight windows for the S197 Mustang as well. Underneath the body is a set of Menscer Motorsports struts up front and a set of Viking shocks resides out back, which are bolted to a Moser M9 rearend. JPC Racing’s Ronnie Reynolds set up the BMR suspension and a new set of Weld wheels and lightweight Brake Man brakes round out the exterior updates. The inside of the car was completely re-wired and a 25.2-cert cage was installed.
Over the last few years, Bennett has played in the Hellion Turbo Coyote Shootout class and qualified third at the NMRA World Finals in Bowling Green with a 7.84-second pass.
“I’ve never class raced before, but Eric Holliday at JPC said why don’t we try it,” Bennett recalled of his move to the championship Street Outlaw category. “We could do the Street Outlaw and X275 classes, and I wanted to try something that I could race more locally. Almost every track has X275—it’s a super competitive class,” Bennett explained.
Testing at Maryland International Raceway went well, with an off the trailer 4.90 to a 4.54 at 157 mph in just five passes.
“With this new dry-deck motor, we’ve gone faster than I ever have before,” Bennett said of the AEM Electronics-controlled, and VP Racing Fuels CQ16-fueled machine. “It’s definitely turned out well. The 1.11 60ft is incredible. The best ever before was a 1.17, so it’s working pretty hard.”
Bennett’s competition debut will come at the Inaugural NMRA Gateway Rumble in the middle of May. His wife, Rita, serves as the only crewmember on the Bennett Electric-sponsored Mustang, while JPC Racing’s Eric Holliday provides the tuning.
“The goal is to get into the 4.40s with it and be super competitive. I’d like to get the 60-ft times down to 1.0-something. We’re going to try and run the NMRA and NMCA as much as possible.”