May

14

 My first memory of a car that I wanted to see as a pre-school kid was the Shelby Daytona Coupe race car.

That is one of the most beautiful race cars ever built.

Dad had a drag car so naturally I became a drag racing fan. Any kid in middle school would tout the quickest production car, in the 1/4 mile.. Some would say Jeff's 67 big block Mustang, A Dodge Hemi or the1967 L-88 427 Vette, or the big block Camaro with a ZL-1 all aluminum427 factory installed race engine that ran a remarkable 11.40 seconds in the 1/4 with those awful hard compound tires.. and that was the trick of the questions. The aluminum head L-88 that was rated at 425 HP was well over 525 Horsepower. Get this a ZL-1 68 Camaro was 7200 bucks.. a V-8 camaro was 3100$ The engine was a 4100 dollar option. They sold 50 cars. The legend was that the dealers pulled the other engines and sold them to race teams and put in a new motor and sold the car as a custom. In a way the dealers learned and became famous for specializing their cars. Yenko, a famous Chevy dealership that made the Yenko Camaro. Chevy and Ford had to stuff enough of these radical engines in a few hundred production cars and sell them to the public to meet the racing rules of the 1960's.

The Guinness World record when I was in middle school was held by the Shelby Cobra. It ran Zero to 100 MPH and… back to Zero, in 13.x seconds! Caroll Shelby stuffed the Ford racing 427 engine into the AC roadster built in England. So their trick was to sell 300 cars total vs the Factory teams that needed to dump a few hundred engines in a 35,000 production per year Corvette or the Millions of Camaros and mustangs that were sold every year in the late 60's. The Cobra was deemed the Corvette killer. Shelby was a great racer. The line is this, he built custom cars for individuals… sure he did a few hundred a year. I love racers and rule books.

Wiki is funny here: "Shelby American was also highly involved with racing".

Shelby American was founded by Carroll Shelby in 1962 to build and market high performance parts and modified cars for individuals. Some of the automobiles produced by Shelby American were the Ford Mustang-based Shelby GT350 and Shelby GT500. Shelby American also created the legendary Shelby Cobra which was an AC Ace with a Ford V8. The company was also highly involved with racing, with Shelby cars winning many races at the dragstrip, at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and America's first win at the World Manufacturers' Championship.[2] In 1966, the same year that Shelby American helped Ford Motor Company land America's the World Manufacturers' Championship, Shelby American also provided support to Ford for their successful campaign to win the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans. Shelby American moved in 1995 to Nevada becoming the first automobile manufacturer in Nevada and began production.


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