the way i look at things.......
if you want to build an all motor drag monster go with ( i hate to say this) a ls1 or ls2 engine. chevys been beatin ford all motor since th late 80s. thats for an all motor with no power adders.
if you want to build a technical track rape machine swap a 302 in to your ranger then stroke and overbore it to a 333 or the like. fords engines are lighter then chevys any day. the 302 a good choice for the size and weight. the 302 only 40 pounds heavier then our 182( 3.0) good handling and P/W ratio and less number crunching for suspention and the engine.
if you really want to freak everyone out swap the 2.3l turbo from a caprice or something. build up the motor right, push 30 pounds and run 11s or 12s out the back door.
of course this is all if you got the money to do so and have time on your hands. good luck!!!!