To get the car to the track, we'd need wiring, an electronic-ignition system, and gauges. Since we had the salvaged Duster at our disposal, the wiring was easy. We simply stripped the wiring from the Duster and transferred it over to our Barracuda, cutting or lengthening wires as needed to fit our car. For ignition, we decided to use MSD's new Digital 6 electronic ignition controller with an MSD billet distributor. The Digital 6 is one of MSD's latest ignition controllers and incorporates a built-in, two-step rev limiter that can be adjusted quickly with a small screwdriver and doesn't need the removable "chips" common to other MSD ignitions. It also has the feature of an ignition retard, which we'll utilize if we ever run nitrous oxide on this car.

To keep track of the engine's vital signs, we chose Sunpro gauges and mounted them in the factory dash that we modified ourselves. The Sunpro instruments are accurate, less expensive than most gauges on the market, and the black face gauges really fit the retro-look we're going for with this car. The tachometer incorporates a shift light as well-a necessity for accurate shifts in a car that will be bracket raced. Speaking of shifts, our shifter will be a Hurst Quarter Stick that we salvaged from the Duster.

With the parts accumulated to finish our car, we got to work assembling our Barracuda. This is always a time-consuming part of any build, but don't get in a rush. Taking your time during assembly, cleaning and painting each part as it's installed is what separates an average car from a nice one. Once our car was assembled, we started the engine and tested the functioning of all the car's systems.

Since everything checked out ok, we headed to Bradenton Motorsports Park to test our bracket car on their quarter-mile dragstrip. Any time you test a new car at the track, it's a good idea to take it easy. For our first test session, we simply eased the car down the track for a couple of passes to seat the transmission clutches and bands, check the steering and brakes, and get a feel for the car's handling. Once confident everything worked properly, we made some hard 60-foot passes to check how the car launched. During our first hard launch, the car drifted left, meaning the left rear tire was spinning. We corrected this by tightening the right torsion bar, which loads the left rear tire. With our car launching straight and pulling hard, it was time for some full passes.

While we had an idea that our car would run somewhere in the 10s in the quarter-mile, our first pass had us pretty excited. The car not only ran in the 10s, it ran low-10s as it clicked off a 10.39 at over 128 mph on its first pass. By bumping the ignition timing to 36 degrees and jetting the carburetor to 96 jets front and rear, we achieved a best pass of 10.28 at 129 mph during our first test session, achieving our goal of 10-second timeslips.

During our next test session, the car's owner and driver, Amy Coleman, stepped in and clicked off a string of low-10s in the quarter. A week later, Amy entered her first bracket race at the Lakeland dragstrip, winning four rounds to earn a win and a $500 paycheck in the Pro class! That's what we consider a successful project.

While this project definitely exceeded our performance goals, we aren't finished with it yet. Look for future articles on the B3 as we make chassis and engine changes to optimize this bracket racer. And if you happen to be bracket racing in the southeast, look out for Amy and her 'Cuda, they've already proven to be a winning combination.