BORN TO RACE: 1966 Shelby Group II Mustang Built For Legendary Driver Ken Miles

Created by independent automotive journalist Steve Statham


One of the saddest features when a life of achievement is minimize shorter is thinking about what could have been. That issue has surrounded the lifestyle of racing driver Ken Miles for a long time. There’s no respond to to these types of musings, of training course. What is still left for the persons who realized and beloved him, and the racing supporters who adopted his profession, is a silent appreciation for what he did execute — and that was loads.

Miles was the winner of plenty of athletics automobile races in the 1950s and gained the 1961 United States Auto Club (USAC) Highway Racing Championship. He was a Shelby-American group driver and main examination driver in the 1960s. He won the 24 Hrs of Daytona, the 12 Several hours of Sebring and the 1966 24 Hrs of Le Mans in actuality, if not formally. These accomplishments placed him at the top rated of his sport, and Miles has obtained a perfectly-deserved reintroduction to a younger technology of racing supporters thanks to the 2019 film “Ford v Ferrari.”

This 1966 Shelby Team II Mustang is one more chapter in the “what could possibly have been” story of Ken Miles, and it will be made available with No Reserve at the Barrett-Jackson 2023 Scottsdale Auction. According to the Shelby American Auto Club (SAAC), Shelby American Environment Registry and Carroll Shelby himself, which is documented in the Distinctive Collector’s Version of Mustang Month to month January 1995 journal, this Mustang was constructed for Ken Miles to race. Tragically, Miles died in a crash while screening the Ford J-vehicle, the following evolution in the GT40 application, at Riverside Global Raceway on August 17, 1966. He would never ever have the chance to travel the Mustang that was in the Shelby pipeline specially for him to race.

It is fascinating to take into consideration what Miles could have completed guiding the wheel of this automobile. The Group II Mustangs were being designed largely to race in the newly developed Sports Auto Club of The usa (SCCA) Trans-American Sedan Championship. Ford was intrigued in the Manufacturers’ Championship the new series provided and approached Shelby American about creating Mustangs to race in the Trans Am’s In excess of 2-Liter course. Shelby designed 16 notchback 1966 Group II Mustangs, and this car or truck is the effectively-recognised 12th car from that batch.

The Team II vehicles were being built basically making use of the GT350 R-Product blueprint, even though there are differences concerning the two. When modified to racing specifications by Shelby, the cars carried Ford serial figures. The Mustangs ended up built to conform to FIA Team II principles, so as opposed to the Shelby GT350 R-Products, they have been demanded to keep the metal hood without having a scoop, all 4 seats in position and manufacturing facility glass windows, amongst other specifics.

When we can ponder what Miles could possibly have accomplished with the vehicle, we don’t have to envision the racing heritage of the Mustang itself. It was raced as supposed and has a lengthy listing of achievements to its credit history. Its to start with owner was driver John McComb, who competed thoroughly in SCCA activities. He drove the automobile to the SCCA A/Sedan Midwest Division Championship in 1966. McComb’s victory at the Inexperienced Valley, Texas, Trans-Am race (with co-driver Brad Brooker) assisted Ford secure the Manufacturers’ Championship in its course in the to start with year of the Trans-Am series. McComb bought the motor vehicle in 1967, but it continued to be raced into the early 1970s.

In 2014, this Group II Mustang was despatched to Famous Motorcar in Halton Hills, Ontario, for a thorough concours restoration. It was disassembled and stripped to bare metal, restored to appropriate Shelby specs and refinished in its first manufacturing facility Wimbledon White paint with blue Le Mans stripes. It has the range 41 painted on the hood, trunk lid and doors, a selection that McComb applied to point out the SCCA’s Region 4, and his Very first Place end therein.

The automobile is powered by an period-proper Shelby American racing 289 Hello-Po V8 engine. It has been outfitted with the right Hello-Po heads, Tri-Y headers, aluminum hello-rise consumption manifold #S2MS-9424-A, Holley 715 cfm carburetor #S2MS-3510-A, metal valve handles with specially fabricated breathers and 7.5-quart Cobra finned aluminum oil pan. The motor is teamed with an period-suitable BorgWarner T10 near-ratio 4-pace handbook transmission with a construct date of July 27, 1965. The electrical power is transferred to a Ford 9-inch Detroit Locker rear conclude with 3.89 gears.

The interior is outfitted with a Shelby-correct 4-stage roll bar, 3-inch levels of competition lap belts, 16-inch 3-spoke steering wheel and six Carroll Shelby gauges. The suspension and brakes are real period Shelby components, with a 19.1 speedy steering box, 1-inch sway bar, override traction bars, KONI shocks, 11.3-inch entrance disc brakes and 10&#2152.5-inch large rear drum brakes. The motor vehicle sits on the proper 15&#2157-inch American Racing magnesium wheels that clearly show some patina, with wheels wrapped with correct-style Firestone Indy 9.20&#21515-inch tires.

This Team II Shelby Mustang is a rolling history lesson and a major element of each Shelby and Ford Motor Company’s racing legacies. As this kind of, it has been signed by Carroll Shelby, John McComb, Shelby GT350 Venture Engineer Chuck Cantwell and Shelby mechanic Terry Doty. This Shelby was also showcased on the address and inside of Athletics Car Graphic December 1966 magazine which was signed by John McComb. This magazine alongside with in depth documentation is provided with the sale.

Appear January in Scottsdale, there will be two sorts of Shelby admirers in the viewers — those people who bid, and these who wonder what may have been. Register to bid to see this storied vehicle cross the block at the Barrett-Jackson 2023 Scottsdale Auction, January 21-29.

By ev3v4hn

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