We're pretty sure everyone has heard of a unicorn, but for the uninitiated, it hails from Greek mythology. It's a completely wild woodland creature that bears resemblance to a white horse with a single, straight and twisted horn protruding from its forehead. It's a symbol of grace and purity, but has a ferocious side, too.

Probably the most well-known aspect of the unicorn's lore is its elusiveness. Sure, everyone talks about them as if they're real, but no one has actually ever seen one, let alone taken one for a ride! OK, mythology lesson over, and here's where unicorns become relevant. You see, Joe Garofalo's '86 Camaro IROC-Z had been nicknamed as such for its elusiveness, certainly not due to anything but the owner's insatiable need to find more speed.

Joe bought this car in high school, and it probably means more to him than life itself. "I bought the car in 1997 while I was in 10th grade. It was 100 percent stock with a 5-liter Tuned Port motor and a 700-R4." Clearly that wouldn't last long as any hot rodder knows. Sound familiar?

"I couldn't just leave it the way it was. It was a bit of a dog. I began with headers and gears. Then during high school and soon after graduating I started visiting my auto shop teacher, Mr. Roth, to show off all my new bolt-ons."

While that was impressive for a high school kid, Joe quickly graduated to a 383 TPI stroker and then slapped on a ProCharger. That was the bee's knees for a little while, but the little TPI motor just wasn't up for the challenge and Joe installed yet another motor—a traditional 355 small-block with AFR heads and a TPIS MiniRam intake paired with the ProCharger and a T56 tranny.

"I went through so many 700-R4s with that stroker and ProCharger that it just made sense to throw in a stronger T56." It wasn't just weak trannies that couldn't keep pace with Joe's ravenous need for muscle flexing. He told us he got so sick of breaking rear gearsets that he stepped up his game to a Moser 9-inch with 4.10 gears and forgot about it.

Soon, even all that wasn't enough, "I got sick of the small-block oil leaks and sold off all the parts. I took the money and bought an aluminum-block 5.3 LS motor and a set of 241 casting heads." Joe ditched the truck intake in lieu of an LS1 unit and in went an LS2 cam for a little more oomph. The plan was set in motion when he purchased a Turbonetics TC 78 turbo and still had a little coin left over. Joe estimates that he should make 650 hp at 18 psi. That seems fairly reasonable considering how many high-ponied turbo LS builds we've seen. "I have to thank Nate at One Guys Garage for the engine harness and Carl over at Lancer Automotive for the help in taming this beastly concoction."

"It took so many years to build all the engines, swap all of the transmissions and rearends that my friends began to call it The Unicorn because you may have heard of it but never see it!"

Since Joe figured out his power concerns (for now) he was free to spend some time on the rest of the car and address important issues—like how to stop this beast when it gets all riled up. He decided that form and function can go together through a set of PBR C6 Corvette calipers and discs up front and an LS1 F-body set for the rear. The wheels are a sharp set of 18-inch C5 Z06 replicas wrapped in Nitto tires measuring in at 275/35-R18, with Koni reds to plant the rubber to the road. Joe beefed up the suspension with Granatelli LCAs, a PHR torque arm, and then added a set of subframe connectors for increased stiffness.

The interior is straight up business. The radio? What radio? We don't need no stinking radio! A/C and other creature comforts? Gone. Climbing in over the rollcage and sitting in the matching red Corbeau seats you are reminded that this is strictly a driver's car. The full array of Auto Meter gauges keeps Joe abreast of the imperative information but beyond that, it's all adrenaline.

"I had so many friends in high school that had Camaros and Trans Ams, that all I wanted to do was burnouts." With a silly amount of turbo'd LS power on tap, Joe can do all the burnouts he wants.

The final aspect of the unicorn parable that you may not be familiar with is its viciousness. Considering the beauty and regal nature of the unicorn it seems odd to think that if threatened, it becomes a most cantankerous and ferocious creature, not stopping until it or you are dead (pretty gnarly, eh?). It's best just to leave well enough alone, capisci? So, you might want to bring your A-game if you want to lock horn with Joe's IROC. And if you're lucky enough and don't tempt fate by getting on The Unicorn's bad side, you might get a glimpse of this rare beauty. And now that Joe has a lot of his gremlins worked out, we hope that this rarity becomes a familiarity.

"It took so many years to build all the engines, swap all of the transmissions and rearends that my friends began to call it The Unicorn because you may have heard of it but never see it!"