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The Reborn Reject—The 6-Second Modular Tale of Brian Devilbiss’ 2013 Shelby GT500


By Ainsley Jacobs

Photos Courtesy of NMRA/Fastest Street Car

Brian “Iceman” Devilbiss is the kind of guy who stops at nothing to achieve his goals. Recently, Devilbiss decided that he wanted to get his infamous ’13 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, known as “The Devil’s Reject,” down into the 6-second zone in the quarter mile.

A huge overhaul took place earlier this year as Devilbiss’s 3,500-pound “lead sled” Shelby was sent to HFR Fabrication where Henry Fryfogle took point on a massive rework of its suspension and chassis.

Prior to the makeover, Devilbiss qualified number one and won both the UPR Products Modular Xtreme as well as the VMP Performance Terminator vs GT500 Shootout classes at the 2017 NMRA Spring Break Shootout race in Bradenton, Florida. At the time, turbocharged L&M Race Engines power was under his hood along with a Coan transmission and billet bolt-together torque converter.

Later, after racing in Maple Grove, Pennsylvania, Devilbiss decided to focus on the Street Outlaw and X275 categories instead, but knew his car was way too heavy. “Fred Cook and Evolution Performance removed the engine and gutted the entire car. Then, it went to HFR,” said Devilbiss, whose Shelby shed nearly 600 pounds in the process.

A tubular frame for the front end was fabricated, HFR mini-tubbed the car, and a host of new components were installed including a narrowed Racecraft Pro Lite 9” housing, Racecraft wishbone and K-member, Penske Racing rear shocks, Santhuff double-adjustable struts, and more. HFR also fabricated and installed new the 25.3 SFI roll cage that’s good for 6.00-second elapsed times.

Brian Devilbiss went wheels up at NMRA World Finals in VP Racing Fuels Street Outlaw

The engine combination was another area where Devilbiss knew he had room to improve. Spec’d by Cook at Evolution Performance, the new, 12:1 compression MPR Racing Engines 5.8L modular engine with Darton sleeves (which drop it down to only 349 ci) was installed along with a new Precision turbocharger, sized either 88mm or 94mm depending on which class Devilbiss is entered in. Coan Racing supplied both the transmission and converter, and Proformance Racing Transmissions’ new converter charge control system was also installed.

With PTP Racing’s Patrick Barnhill on board for tuning of the Haltech Elite 2500 ECU, the group hit a few races beginning in August to fine-tune the new setup. After the NMRA/NMCA season wrapped up, Devilbiss turned his attention to the original goal – running 6s. The 22nd Annual Haltech World Cup Finals: Import vs. Domestic race at Maryland International Raceway in November was targeted. “We switched the rear gears to accommodate the quarter-mile track instead of our usual eighth-mile setup,” noted Devilbiss of the small changes that were made to prepare for the main event.

There, Devilbiss wasted no time in achieving his goal and made it look easy when he ran 6.788 at 206.20 mph (4.41 at 169 mph in the eighth-mile) during X275 vs Hot Rod qualifying to slip into the number two spot. In the first round of eliminations, his 6.822 at 203.92 mph hit took the win over Kevin Fragoso, and consistency in round two earned Devilbiss another win with a 6.818 at 204.11 mph pass, this time against Jorge Juarbe. Running like a bracket racer, Devilbiss put Martin Connelly on the trailer in round three with a 6.854 at 203.09 mph trip, enjoyed a bye in the semi-finals, and finished off his weekend with a 6.893 at 198.99 mph pass in the finals to earn the runner up spot to winner Vinny Palazzolo.

For the full feature story on the Reborn Reject, see the January 2018 print issue of Fastest Street Car Magazine.

Ainsley Jacobs
P.TEN Marketing's Ainsley Jacobs is a freelance motorsports marketing professional with extensive experience in marketing and communications, website development, social media management, photography, journalism, and more.