Ford Racing opened up the 2010 Mustang Cobra Jet build facility to customers, vendors, partners and employees to celebrate the “Job Done”, the completion of 50 new Cobra Jets.

Seventeen Cobra Jet customers made the trek to snowy Flat Rock, Michigan to pick up their factory built race cars. While at the Mustang plant, the new owners had the opportunity to meet the employees that built the cars and help celebrate the life of the Cobra Jet’s founding father, the late Bob Tasca.

Bob Tasca, Jr stopped by to participate in the celebration as he was on his way to Pomona to race his Mustang Nitro Funny Car at the NHRA Winternationals. Tasca, Jr. recalled how his grandfather and his dealership mechanics helped create the first Cobra Jet prototype.

“He set it up with a 428 out of the Police Interceptor package. It had a longer stroke so it had a little more torque,” recalled Tasca. “He put 406 cylinder heads on it with larger intake and exhaust valves. He put that combination together and in a Mustang it was potent. It really reflected what he thought would Win on Sunday and Sell on Monday.”

Bob Tasca, Jr. stopped by on his route to Pomona to thanks those that participated in the Cobra Jet progam, a car his late grandfather Bob Tasca created.

Tasca Jr. said that after a few weeks of driving the Mustang around Providence, Rhode Island, Ford invited his grandfather down to Dearborn because they wanted to see the car to believe it. “The Ford engineers told him it wouldn’t work and it couldn’t cool,“ said Tasca. “My grandfather told them that that was funny because he had been driving it all week and that there was nothing wrong with it. He brought it to Detroit and Ford realized that the package that he put together was legit. That’s why he loved Ford because they got it. Ford got behind him and decided to build these exciting cars. Turn the clock foreward and even in these tough economic times they are producing this car. They are the only manufacturer in the world that’s doing what they are doing here. It’s a great tribute for Ford and more importantly a great tribute to our customers.”

Brent Hajek was the lucky recipient of the first 2010 Cobra Jet off the assembly line. If you’re not familiar with Hajek, he’s what I call a modern day version of Mickey Thompson. He was the car owner of John Calvert’s 2009 Winternationals winning Cobra Jet and has been to Bonneville with Mickey’s son Danny Thompson driving a Mustang to 250+ mph. He even coaxed Bill Elliott back to Talladega to attempt a closed course record in an E-85 powered late model Mustang. Hajek took delivery of the first 2008 Cobra Jet and bought several more. He was excited to take delivery of the first 2010 Super Cobra Jet and has big plans for the new year.

Brent Hajek was the lucky recipient of the first 2010 Cobra Jet off the assembly line. He he accepts the keys from Ford Racing's Andy Slankard.

“We made history last year at the NHRA Winternationals, we went out and won the thing on the 40th Anniversary of the Cobra Jet”, said Hajek. “It’s just gotten better from there. We went out and kicked the Dodge Challenger Drag Pack’s butt. Got to run against Big Daddy’s Dodge at Indy. Set some national records and were ready to take this 2010 and see what it can do. These guys built a heck of a machine and we’ve got some cool things in the works for 2010. I hope to make Big Bob Tasca proud!”

Randy “Mr. Big Stuff” Payne made the trip north to pick up his car. In 1969, Payne teamed up with Herbert Platt to run Ford’s Eastern Ford Drag Team.

Another 2010 Cobra Jet owner making the trek to Michigan was Rome, Georgia’s Randy “Mr. Big Stuff” Payne. In 1969, Payne teamed up with Herbert Platt to run Ford’s Eastern Ford Drag Team. Platt and Payne hit the road in a two car open hauler with Platt's CJ powered Mustang and Payne's Torino Cobra Super Stocker. Back in 1969, the team ran a heavy schedule of drag racing events and held performance clinics at local Ford dealerships.

Randy’s son Butch still races in NHRA’s Stock Eliminator and the family was excited about picking up the car and getting back to Georgia. The Payne’s even brought some of the old photos from the Ford Drag Team Days and displayed them next to their new car.

Grace Howell (right) and the Howell family from Aiken, South Carolina will race their 2010 Cobra Jet in AA/SA. Debut is planned at the Gatornationals

Another tried and true Ford family taking delivery of a 2010 Cobra Jet was Grace Howell and the Howell family from Aiken, South Carolina. For several years, Grace campaigned a 1995 Cobra R in NHRA’s Super Stock class. Plans for 2010 include running the Cobra Jet in AA/SA and the Cobra R again in the Super Stock GT class. The Howell team plans on running both cars first at the NHRA Gatornationals and in other races in the Southeast and Midwest.

Jamie Allison (far right) Brian Wolfe (second from right) and other members of AAI and Ford Racing sign a Cobra Jet hood that will go up on the pilot assembly wall of fame.

Jamie Allison, director, Ford North America Motorsports was on hand to congratulate his Ford Racing team that helped make the 2010 Cobra Jet a reality. As head of Ford Racing Performance Parts last year, Jamie was instrumental in making the additional run of 50 2010 Cobra Jets happen.

Also on hand was Brian Wolfe, who was head of Ford Racing last year when the 2010 Cobra Jet was designed and developed. Credit goes to Brian for many of the racer friendly features on the new car. Features that include; transmission access panel, engine/transmission options and other go fast goodies.

Seventeen 2010 Cobra Jet owners visited the assembly line where their cars were made to celebrate "Job One" and "Job Done" with Ford Racing

2010 Cobra Jet delivery took place at the Mustang Plant Pilot Assembly Line. Owners were already applying graphics to their cars like Ray Skillman Ford

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