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Smith Claims Fourth TREMEC Stick Shift Shootout Title at the NMRA Spring Break Shootout

Posted By: Evan J. Smith
Smith Claims Fourth TREMEC Stick Shift Shootout Title at the NMRA Spring Break Shootout
By NMRA Staff
When it comes to the Tremec Stick Shift Shootout, there are few racers who can consistently keep pace with Florida’s Jeff Smith. Known as “StickShiftDude” on social media, Smith can row gears with the best of them; he proves it on the racetrack time and time again. 
Driving his familiar Competition Orange ’04 SVT Cobra affectionately known as “Pumpkin,” Smith has won multiple Stick Shift Shootout titles including the inaugural event in 2013. He’s refined his Ford Mustang to run low 9s and occasionally in the 8s, still using the IRS rear suspension, a TREMEC Magnum 6-speed and a McLeod clutch.
Last year, Smith was a beast in the Circle D True Street category with multiple victories, so it wasn’t the least bit surprising to see him rout the Stick Shift Shootout field during the 2024 Spring Break Shootout held for the first time at historic Gainesville Raceway. 
The Tremec Stick Shootout is a race-within-a-race for the top manual transmission Ford drivers who compete in Circle D True Street. Competitors must first complete a demanding 30-mile street cruise and then complete three back-to-back-to-back passes. The top eight stick shift drivers then compete in the TREMEC SSS, using their True Street qualifying average as a handicap ET for eliminations. The compete for pride, but also a $3,500 in prizes and a TREMEC Top 8 jacket.
The field of eight drivers qualified for the event, with more than half of them running deep into the 9-second zone. Smith, racing off a 9.71 handicap, kicked off his run to the title with a 9.48 win against Kyle Miller.
In the semifinal round, Smith gave up a slight starting line advantage to Chris Rusch and his “Coyotefury” Mustang, who recently moved from the HP Tuners Super Stang class to the new Whatever it Takes Transmission Parts Street Bandit 10.10 eliminator (TREMEC SSS racers can enter two classes). Smith had enough power to pull off the win with his quickest run of the day, a 9.22 at nearly 150 mph. 
In the final round, Smith faced off with Karl Goin and his ’92 Mustang LX. Goin grabbed a holeshot at the tree, but he spun the tires and slowed to a 10.46 from his 9.26/146-mph pass that he ran in the semis. Smith also struggled to gain traction, but he was able to seal the deal with a 9.417, throwing the parachute at the end of a 159.31-mph run. 
“This is my 4th TREMEC SSS win, but there was a 7-year drought in between my wins last year in Orlando. I won in 2013, 2016, 2023 and now again in 2024. My plan is to race the remaining TREMEC Stick Shift Shootouts along with a bunch of local events,” said Smith. “It’s awesome that TREMEC puts up $1,000, McLeod does $1,000 and a I also got a $1,500 voucher from McLeod. I run the Magnum that I won in 2013 and it shifts beautifully, In 2016 I won another one, so I have a spare. I also run a McLeod RXT 1200 HD clutch that’s been reliable and fast. I went 161 mph so based off the weight (3,450 lbs. w/driver) it’s probably making around 1,050. I run a Gen 5 Whipple on a 4.6L engine,” added Smith.
While the calendar hasn’t hit March yet, Smith is already off to a great start in 2024. He recently completed Sick Week, his first drag-and-drive event, with a robust 9.07 and 160.96 average over the grueling five-day event.
Now, Smith is now a four-time winner of the TREMEC Stick Shift Shootout. He attributes much of his success to a competitive combination that includes a 4.6L engine with a Whipple Supercharger, TREMEC Transmission, McLeod Clutch, Hoosier tires, Weld Wheels, and components from Maximum Motorsports.

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