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Oct 18, 2011
Lakeland, FL

Big Finish
Closing out the event with a massive cruise-in at the Myrtle Beach Mall
By Steve Turner

For a week that most of us look forward to all year, Mustang Week definitely goes by in the blink of an eye. By the time Saturday’s Cruise-In at Myrtle Beach Mall, many people are getting one last fix of that Grand Strand life and saying goodbye to friends before the official end of the event at the car show awards in the afternoon.

For your friends at SVTP, it was a chance to sell out the last few of our ‘I Survived Mustang Week’ T-shirts while trying to catch up on some of the cars we missed throughout the week.

Though it takes place in the same venue as the official car show, the cruise-in is open to anyone on a first come, first served basis. It fills up quickly, as does the rest of the mall parking lot.

The cruise-in also serves as a destination for several car clubs, which cruise from various locations and arrive together so they can park in rows. We saw blue Mustangs, yellow Mustangs and white Mustangs grouped together, but the highlight is the Fox Mustang cruise put together by Southeastern Fox Bodies. Though weather chased off some potential participants, this group still numbered 155 strong, and you just don’t see that many Foxes together at just any car show.

Something else you don’t see to often at a car show or cruise-in is a wedding, but right after the car show awards a Mustang Week wedding took place…


In all, the cruise-in was a fitting end to the 15th Anniversary edition of Mustang Week. We are still worn out from trying to capture it all, but we can’t wait to do it all again next year. See you there…



Each year SVTPerformance selects an Editor’s Choice award winner from the car show participants. With so many great cars in the show, picking a winner can be challenging, so we end up going with our guts. This year Mustang Week stalwart Joey Chestnut scored the beautiful trophy. Not only did he add fresh paint to his 2001 Mustang GT, but he bolted on a couple of turbos in front of the blower on his Lightning 5.4 engine!


Shhhh. Don’t tell anyone, but one of the cars your author was most excited to see at the show was this brand-new Focus RS. It’s not a Mustang, but the car brought to the show by Custom Performance Engineering made a stop by Darlington Dragway on Drag Night and clicked off a 13.9 e.t. right after a two-hour drive with no traction control. BG Racing’s Brad Gusler was behind the wheel and he believes mid-13s are possible with a cool car and launch control engaged.


While Avalanche Gray seemed polarizing before the Shelby GT350 hit the street, it now seems to be the “it” color for the high-revving road rocket. Marcus Cervantes proved that the color looks sharp on earlier Mustangs too. He rocked his Avalanche New Edge all over Mustang Week, and hit was one of the stars of the Late Model Restoration display on Friday and Saturday.


There are a lot of Coyote-powered Mustangs these days, but Aaron Bickel went to great lengths to make those little mods to set his apart. Besides some nice application of contrasting black and white paint and some aftermarket upgrades, the big mod on his Coyote is the smooth lid on his Boss 302 intake. He actually cut out the stock intake roof and had a new body shop build a new painted lid adorned with a Magnetic accent stripe.


Coyotes, Coyotes everywhere, but not always where you might expect to find them. Facilitated by Ford Performance’s user-friendly Controls Pack wiring and computers the modern 5.0 engine is becoming the swap candidate in Ford circles. This read SN-95 rocked chrome Cobra R-style wheels, an Aeromotive fuel system and a Coyote engine topped by a Boss 302 intake.


The heat didn’t stop the VMP Performance crew from doing work. Between selling parts and creating tunes, they were already busy, but why not install a VMP Gen2 TVS on a GT500 at Mustang Week? That’s just what VMP’s Joe Goodnough and Brad Marsh did.


It would be unusual enough to spot two ASC McLaren Mustangs at any show, much less two heavily modified examples. These colorful droptops were definitely built to cruise the beach.


One of the sickest ’03-’04 Cobras at Mustang Week wasn’t event entered in the show. Instead, Stephen Floyd’s Gotta Have It Green machine attracted a steady stream of admirers to the Mickey Thompson display. This turbo Terminator features a big single blowing into a sheetmetal intake and burning E85 courtesy of Atomizer Racing Injectors. It should run as good as it looks.


More often than not owners that modify rare Mustangs are subject to intense blowback from the anonymous dissenters. We, on the other hand, dig it when someone isn’t scared to make a limited edition Mustang even more unusual. Case in point is this Boss 302 Laguna Seca. Not only does it have a number of hydrodipped appearance parts, but it is running a ProCharger too. Looks like a fun car to drive!


There was a time when building a Fox Rod was an unusual occurrence, but in 2016 the trend has hit its stride. Mario Pineda’s 1992 Mustang LX coupe is so clean and in a way it’s modern version of the Mustangs built back in the day. It keeps that OG cred with a pushrod engine wearing the tried and true pairing of a Vortech supercharger and a Holley SysteMAX II intake.


The crew at Pro Dyno was jammed up all week. As the official dyno provider for Mustang Week they were running close to 30 cars a day across the rollers and we have never seen a team so efficient at getting cars on and off the horsepower detector. The company was also supported by a number of cool customer cars, including this beautiful Ford GT.


There is something about Foxes in the Carolinas and another insanely clean example was Scott Hartrick’s ’88 Mustang GT. Because of its seating choice, Scott’s ride was part of the TMI Products stable but this ebony stunner is more than just a pretty clean face. Nope. It is powered by a Dart 393ci engine boosted by a single 76mm turbo. All told it’s good for over 700 at the tire!

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