Tag Archives: Performance Autosport


From our friends at Saleen Performance Vehicles.

Congratulations to Chris Cobetto and the entire Performance Autosport Inc., SALEEN SPEEDLAB, Bullydog, HRE Performance Wheels race team for taking both wins this weekend at Hyperfest at Summit Point Raceway! It was a blast, make sure if you have never been to Hyperfest, check it out next year!! You won’t regret it.

[Source: Saleen Performance Vehicles]


NASA American Iron Class

Speedlab / BullyDog / Performance Autosport AI Mustang

It was a great weekend for the Speedlab BullyDog Performance Autosport team. Chris Cobetto piloted his Saleen Speedlab 01-R Mustang to two pole positions and two podium finishes, including the team’s first win. The win was sweetened post impound when the team found that they had smashed the American Iron class record by more than one second, turning those strong, light HRE wheels over quicker than anyone else for a lightning fast 2:07.36, a time nearly four seconds faster than the cars initial outing in February.

[Source: Saleen Performance Vehicles]


From our friends at Saleen Performance Vehicles.

Artist Concept
Artist Concept

Back from PRI, big things in the works including a new American Iron race program with the help of Performance Autosport and Cobetto Racing. Saleen Speedlab, Bully Dog, HRE Wheels, Sparco, Exedy, Hawk Pads, American Racing Headers, Transzilla, Grassroots Motorsports and others are all on board to make this happen. More details and a full race schedule to be released soon!!

[Source: Saleen Performance Vehicles]


A message from Mark LaMaskin: VA window banner law update!!! – Today, 12:04 PM

Well a few thousand dollars and a court verdict and we have WON!!!!!!!

Inspection Bulletin #328
From Captain Ronald Saunders

To all inspection stations

Subject Windshield Shadebands and Tinting Films

Currently, inspection regulations do not permit film or darkening material to be applied on the windshield except to replace the sunshade in the upper most area as installed by the manufacture of the vehicle. However, at the Federal level,it has been discovered this is only a concern when tint is applied beyond the AS-1 line.

In order to be consistent with Federal guidelines, 19VAC30-70-210, paragraph 11, Glass and Glazing of the official State Police Manual will be revised to reflect this change.

Effective immediately, Sun shading material on the windshield displaying words lettering, numbers or pictures that do not extend below the AS-1 line are not considered items for inspection.


Mark @performance autosport

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By: JULIAN BENBOW on October 31, 2005

Oct. 31–Mark LaMaskin was 30 years old when he decided to leave the family business.

He went from more than five years of stable employment in his parents’ material handling equipment business to being an unemployed newlywed hanging onto the hope of turning his passion into his profession. Not to mention he and his wife had just moved into a new home, so that profession had to be at least marginally profitable.

“There was just a little bit of pressure,” LaMaskin said, reflecting on it all.

The large, one-room warehouse, the spray-painted office like Les Nessman’s on “WKRP in Cincinnati,” the 12-hour days, and six-day weeks are all easier to think about while sitting in a leather office chair checking e-mail from across the globe.

Everything from automobile advice to interview requests come through Performance Autosport in Rockville, because when people want to find out about Saleen Mustangs they know to go to LaMaskin.

“I just found my forte and it’s pretty cool,” LaMaskin said. “I’m kind of known as the Mustang or the Saleen guy and that’s pretty cool. It’s all pretty surreal to me. It’s kind of neat.”

He had been looking for a while after all.

He was never the cool kid, he says, never the jock. He was just the kid who would read the car magazines his dad brought home for him.

He pored over them, amazing considering the dyslexia LaMaskin battled throughout his school days.

The magazines satisfied his need to learn what made machines work. It was one of the few times he’d used reading to help him learn.

LaMaskin said he almost never cracked open a book in college. Instead he went to class every day with open ears and notebooks to earn his bachelor’s degree in political science from Virginia Commonwealth University.

“I wasn’t a straight-A student,” he said. “But I graduated.”

With the degree behind him, LaMaskin had something he could take into job interviews to show he was more than capable. But he said he didn’t need a piece of paper to tell him that.

“I think you are either a business person or you’re not a business person,” said LaMaskin, who has run Performance Autosport since 1998. “You either have the skills and you’re either an entrepreneur or you’re not. I don’t think there’s really any in-between.

“Just because you have a business degree doesn’t mean you’re going to be a good business person. A lot of the most successful people I know don’t have a degree in business. Business is in your blood and dealing with people is in your blood.”

LaMaskin can’t remember a day when he wasn’t working. He had his own car-detailing business in college. And while some of his buddies bolted for Cancun or Daytona for spring break, LaMaskin washed, buffed and shined about a hundred cars during the week.

“I could make $2,000 in that week and that would pay for my entertainment for the rest of the year, and none of the guys understood how I always had money,” LaMaskin said. “Well that’s because I worked my butt off.”

He hustled even in high school, working as a field representative for L&L Limited in North Carolina, running ads in papers, meeting with possible buyers and putting them in touch with the exotic car trader.

“I’ve always had a job,” he said. “I’ve never been the kid that goes to camp for the summer.”

What LaMaskin calls a natural work ethic is what allowed him to do things he never thought he would.

The 16-year-old kid with the “piece of crap” Monte Carlo is the man who has lifted the “scissor” doors of a Lamborghini Countach and tested all 400-plus horses.

More important, the spray-painted office now has walls, and the garage at Performance Autosport can fit some three dozen Saleens. (Saleen Mustangs are named for former race driver Steve Saleen, who in 1983 began Saleen Inc., a company that customizes Ford’s pony car for appearance and performance).

The business isn’t always profitable, LaMaskin said, but it rewards in other ways. “One month it’s great, the next month it’s down, the next month it’s great,” he said. “Our business is a fun business and it’s about being addicted to automobiles.”

The borders of addiction and expertise meet at LaMaskin’s shop on Plaza Drive, where customers come to ask about carburetors verses electronic fuel injection and authors such as Brad Bowling, an authority on Mustangs, come to pick up the history and chronology of the specially souped-up Saleens.

“We get a lot of notoriety,” said LaMaskin. “The business has definitely developed in the last seven years.”

Along with buying and selling cars, LaMaskin hired employees Don Rositch and Kevin Adolf as Performance Autosport moves into performance parts and tuning.

But even with the success, LaMaskin can’t help but think about what square one was like and why those 12-hour days and six-day weeks are still important.

“If you’re not there to watch what you created, it can crumble as fast as it was created,” LaMaskin said.

“Whatever you put in you’ll get back out and if you stop putting in and you don’t have a good foundation for something then it can go down as fast as it was built up.”

Trade Names is a regular feature about established Richmond-area businesses.


A message from Mark LaMaskin: New Saleen Book PRE-ORDERS

Performance Autosport is taking Per-Orders for the new Saleen book. It will not be shipped until the 2nd week of April. We only have a limited run, so get yours now.

We have a pop up going live tonight on our website, www.performanceautosport.com – (804) 784-8851.

People are talking about The Saleen Book and Owners Registry: 20 Years of Saleen Mustangs – the 430-plus page hardcover scheduled for release April 1 by Driveway Books.

The Saleen Book is such a thorough and colorful telling of the Saleen Mustang story that even I learned a lot reading it!” – Steve Saleen

“It’s about time somebody did a book on Steve, and I’m delighted to be a small part of the Saleen history.” – comedian and co-founder of Saleen/Allen Speedlab Tim Allen

The Saleen Book and Owners Registry is a long-anticipated history of the Saleen Mustang in pictures and words. It’s a must for anybody interested in high-performance Mustangs. I’ll be using it for reference for years to come.” – automotive writer/photographer Jerry Heasley

The Saleen Book, of which only 5,000 will be printed, is available in two formats:

“The Standard” hardback edition includes a full-color history chapter for each year of Saleen production; the all-encompassing Owners Registry, which lists specs and available information on more than 7,000 individual Saleen Mustangs; an extensive media bibliography; and sidebars on cars of interest from the past two decades. This 20-year history retails for $60 (plus applicable sales taxes, shipping and handling).

The premium hardback edition is known as “The Saleen 500,” as that’s how many are being produced with individual serial numbers on a bound certificate of authenticity; a high-quality, illustrated jacket; and Steve Saleen’s autograph. Each copy of this desirable collector’s edition is $120 (with no charge for shipping and handling, but applicable sales tax).

Automotive journalist and former Saleen publicist Brad Bowling wrote The Saleen Book from an insider’s angle that gives his story a uniquely intimate perspective. Illustrating the book are more than 500 of the 8,000 slides Bowling shot of original, unmodified cars as he traveled coast-to-coast researching this book, as well as many from Steve Saleen’s company archives.

Because this special publication is expected to move as quickly as a supercharged S-351, Driveway Books is encouraging PRE-ORDERS through this Web site (where VISA and MasterCard are welcome). Shipping for both versions of The Saleen Book will begin the first week in April; please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery.

Credit card orders using VISA and MASTERCARD can be taken over the phone at (804) 784-8851.

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