Boost Works creates a super Shelby for the street—and the Texas Mile
By Steve Turner
Photos courtesy of Boost Works
It’s a safe bet that most people reading this site dream of a Mustang with huge horsepower. Some of us want a street car that pushes the limits of that moniker. Others want an all-out race car that pushes the envelope of the record book. Sometimes, those two wishes intersect in one car.
In the case of this 2012 Shelby GT500, it was built to behave on the street and cut loose on The Texas Mile with just north of 1,200 rear-wheel horsepower.
“We’ve sponsored and attended the Texas Mile for a few years, now. Usually, we go to watch, and give Mark and Kevin over at M2K Motorsports a hand in the pits with their 278-mph Ford GT. That’s always fun, but we decided last year to put a car together to go and get our feet wet,” Travis Burelle of Boost Works explained. “One of our customers brought us a 2012 GT500, and wanted to build something that he could use as a high-powered street car, and for mile racing.”
Apparently, getting their feet wet meant pushing all the chips in and betting on the winning combination of big cubes and big boost.
“Having built every variation of modular Ford engines now for almost 15 years, we approached this project with the idea of building the largest-displacement modular Ford engine that we could safely produce,” he explained. “We didn’t want to have excessive piston speeds or pumping losses, and we wanted to let our ported GT heads work their magic.”
With those heads, the big-bore 5.4 and Kenne Bell Mammoth definitely made magic. Even during its early testing phases—with lower boost and conservative timing—it broke into the four-digit range…
Building the engine was one thing. They also upgraded the rest of the car to support this kind of power. However, they didn’t go full-race-car from the jump. Aside from a sweet set of True Forged wheels, the car looks pretty stock. I didn’t even have a roll cage, which would limit just how fast it could legally run at a mile race.
“On our first trip out to the Texas Mile last fall, we ran the car at 1,000whp on C85, with a very conservative timing map. After fighting traction all weekend, we finally laid down a respectable 164mph half-mile speed. The car didn’t have a cage yet, and we were not allowed to go over 199 mph,” Travis said. “We also had a slightly small diameter tire for the rear gear we were running. We topped out Fifth gear at around the 3/4-mile mark, with the data-log showing 201 mph at that point. Not wanting any part of Sixth gear at full power (and not wanting to piss off the track officials), we coasted through the 1-mile mark at roughly our half-mile speed.”
As you can see below, the Boost Works GT500 certainly proved up to the task of running at top speed, and so far, this super Shelby has proven itself in every arena.
“This is a full-weight car, with stock aero, and it will do in excess of 200 mph in the standing mile with no problems,” he added. “Our engine has held up well throughout testing, including 50-plus dyno pulls, six passes down the track, and over 500 miles of street testing.”
Now, the next step is to fit it with a cage and wider tire and let it eat. For now, just enjoy it pulling hard on the street…