Kent Nine has accomplished a lot since he began competing in the NMRA ten years ago.
In his 2006 Mustang GT convertible, he ran 11s and earned championships in 2014 and 2015 in Roush Performance Super Stang, and in the 2016 Mustang GT known as the Brenspeed Shop Car, he soared to 9s and a seventh place finish in 2016 and a sixth place finish in 2017 in Roush Performance Super Stang. In the same car, he competed in NMRA Steeda Limited Street for most of this year, and he’s currently in fifth place in points in the class.
His intentions as of late have been to modify his own car for NMRA Steeda Limited Street, and he began by sending it to Straightline Performance in Illinois to have a 25.3 chrome moly cage fabricated for it. Then, he purchased an 5.0L Cobra Jet engine from NMRA ProCharger Coyote Modified driver David Witt, and after hiring Holbrook Racing Engines to perform machine work, Nine, who builds engines at Brensped, reassembled it.
“I wanted to run a Coyote engine, and when I had the opportunity to buy this one from David Witt, I took it, because I knew that it was good and that it had been in a car that ran 8.40s,” said Nine. “To get it exactly how I needed it, however, I tore it apart and went through it from top to bottom and sleeved it. The block, crank and rods are the original Cobra Jet components, and we used Comp cams and topped the engine with new GT350 heads and a Roush TVS 2.3 supercharger, and we installed a MagnaFuel fuel system.”
Nine chose an RPM Transmissions-built Turbo 400 and a Circle D converter to back the combination, and Strange axles, shocks spool and brakes were installed under the car which rolls on Race Star wheels wrapped with Mickey Thompson ET Street tires. Patrick Barnhill and Jason Lee tackle the tune-up with a Haltech engine management system.
“Everybody I talked to said I needed to go with a Turbo 400, and that the ease of changing gear sets is a big plus,” said Nine. “Pro Mods use them, and they have way more horsepower than I do, so I figure I’m safe.”
After much anticipation, Nine debuted the reworked car at the 17th Annual NMCA World Street Finals presented by Chevrolet Performance, which was Sept. 13-16 at at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indiana. There, with no test passes under his belt, he entered Edelbrock Xtreme Street, even though it wasn’t a perfect fit for his combination.
“We didn’t make any full passes because we wanted to see where we were with the set-up and go from there, plus, I had a boost issue and lost seven pounds of boost, our converter was a little tight and I’m in the process of making my licensing passes,” said Nine, whose committed crew includes his wife, Angie Nine, plus Brooks Smith and Tyler Friend. “It was definitely a learning experience, but we were very happy.”
Now, Nine is focused on throwing his hat into the Steeda Limited Street ring at the 20th Annual Nitto NMRA All-Ford World Finals, this weekend, Sept. 27-30 at Beech Bend Raceway in Kentucky.
“I think it’s a great, competitive class, and I’ve been wanting to go heads-up racing for a while now,” said Nine. “I’m really looking forward to this.
All of the racing at the highly-anticipated event — the final race on this year’s NMRA tour — will be broadcast on SpeedVideo.com, courtesy of Strange Engineering, TCI, Comp Cams, E3 Spark Plugs, Flying A Motorsports, ProCharger, Champion Cooling, GFORCE 1320, Baer Brakes, Blow-By-Racing and Stage 8.
(Pictures by Mary Lendzion)