Green Steed – Roush Power and Subtle Mods Make for a Menacing ’69 Mach 1
Jack Boesch’s last name may sound familiar to longtime Goodguys members and hot rodders. That’s because Jack’s cousin, Dale, runs Boesch Hot Rod Concepts, a small-but-celebrated shop in the tiny town of Humphrey, Nebraska. Over the past four decades, Dale and his team of craftsmen have been responsible for a long string of top-quality, award-winning, magazine-featured rods and machines.
Jack and Dale’s fathers started a body shop in Humphrey back in the 1940s and teamed up with two other brothers to purchase the town’s Ford dealership in the ’60s. Needless to say, all of the Boesch offspring grew up around cars and have a strong allegiance to the Blue Oval. Jack can recall detailing new Mach 1 Mustangs at the dealership in 1969 and thinking they were one of the coolest cars Ford had ever made. He vowed to own one someday.
That day came a few decades later, when Jack bought a nice, restored example to cruise and enjoy. The pony was right at home in the family’s stable of Mustangs, a collection that includes a clean ’66 coupe and a survivor ’73 convertible. All was going well until 2008, when the ’69 pony collided with another four-legged mammal – a deer.
Fortunately, cousin Dale’s shop also does collision repair, so Jack knew the Mustang could be properly fixed. With the hot rod side of the shop just on the other side of the wall, though, it was easy for temptation to creep in. Jack couldn’t resist. “I said the four most expensive words in my life to Dale: ‘Let’s do it right,’” Jack says with a chuckle.
That’s all Dale needed to hear. With input from Jack – a graphic designer with a great eye for style – the mediocre Mach 1 was transformed into a moss-colored muscle machine; a thoroughbred that incorporates modern flair and a touch of menace into the classic Mustang lines.
The Boesch cousins took advantage of the wealth of aftermarket performance parts available for classic Mustangs, including a full complement of RideTech goodies – tubular front control arms, triangulated four-link rear suspension, air springs, and adjustable shocks – plus power rack-and-pinion steering from Total Control Products, a narrowed 9-inch rearend, and 12-inch Wilwood disc brakes all around. It all works together to provide a comfortable, great-handling ride and nicely tuck the 19×10- and 18×8-inch Budnik wheels, which are custom painted and fitted with Mustang center caps.
As the project evolved, Dale told Jack he had the ideal heart for this this pony: a Roush Performance 351c.i. Cleveland with ’70s NASCAR heritage. It was rebuilt by Charley’s Speed & Machine with a COMP camshaft, MSD ignition, and FAST throttle-body injection bolted to a vintage Roush Performance intake that routinely draws comments from Ford fans. A ConceptOne accessory drive system, Bowler automatic overdrive transmission, custom headers with Flowmaster mufflers, and lots of custom painting, powder coating, and detail work helped complete the mechanical makeover.
Dale is known for his metal-massaging skills, so it’s no surprise the Mustang got the nip-and-tuck treatment in addition to its needed repair. The Boesch team narrowed and tucked the front and rear bumpers, fabricated a custom firewall and engine compartment panels, and added a Cobra-style fuel filler to the taillight panel. They also installed a chin spoiler, rear wing, and a functional Boss 429 hood scoop for a more muscular appearance. Naturally, the body panels and gaps were all massaged for a show-quality fit before the custom-mixed Axalta Moss Green Pearl paint was applied. Bright orange and satin smoke silver striping finish things off.
Tracy Weaver at The Recovery Room carried the color theme over inside, using green leather with gray suede inserts and orange accents to cover the seats and door panels. Dakota Digital instruments help update the dash, while an IDIDIT tilt column and Vintage Air improve cruising comfort. An American Autowire harness was used to connect all the electrical components, with wiring tucked out of sight.
Finished last year, the potent pony strikes an enviable balance. It’s a capable show horse that has demonstrated its ability to capture awards and garner attention on display. It’s also a wonderful long-distance runner, comfortably galloping at speed on road trips like the Goodguys Cruise to Columbus last year. That deer collision may not have been the way Jack wanted to initiate this Mustang makeover, but the refined and muscular result is nothing short of a stunning steed.
Photos by Damon Lee