Because John Leslie, Jr. and his red Fox body Mustang had been formidable forces in NMRA American Racing Headers Factory Stock since the year 2000, he surprised fans when he parked the car in favor of his blue and silver Fox body Mustang in 2011.
But the move was successful, as the veteran driver who rows gears like a champ went on to lay down a best of 10.88 with a Two-Valve engine and ProMotion-prepped Tremec transmission and a best of 10.97 with his current MV Performance-built Coyote engine and MV Performance-prepped Tremec transmission.
With his red Mustang at the ready in his garage, he invited his dad, John Leslie, Sr., to climb into its driver’s seat in 2011, and in no time, Leslie, Sr. was trapping 11.50s and 11.60s via the car’s 306 cubic-inch pushrod engine, ProMotion-prepped Tremec and ACT clutch. In fact, he finished fifth, twelfth and eleventh place in points respectively in 2011, 2012 and 2013.
While Leslie, Sr. hasn’t been behind the wheel of the red rocket since then, news leaked that he will be in 2016, possibly as soon as the 16th Annual NMRA Ford Motorsport Nationals presented by Juggernaut Power, April 28-May 1 at Maple Grove Raceway in Reading, Pennsylvania.
“We are all so proud of him, and so happy that he will be going down the track again,” said Leslie, Jr.
This time around, the car will do its boogying with Leslie, Jr.’s Two-Valve engine – which had been shelved but was recently freshened by MV Performance – as well as an MV Performance-prepped Tremec and ACT clutch. Leslie, Jr. is hoping Leslie, Sr. will stick-shift his way to 10.80s or better, and when asked whether he’ll take a spin in the red Mustang every now and then even though he’ll be busy campaigning his blue and silver Mustang, Leslie, Jr., laughs before saying in no uncertain terms that one car is more than enough for him.
“It will be great to have dad back behind the wheel racing again,” said Leslie, Jr., whose sister, Sondra Leslie, also competes in the class and finished in a remarkable third place in 2015 points.“I’m hoping the red car goes rounds and would love to line up against my father again, like we did in 2011 in the semifinal of Joliet.”