Sunday, 23 August 2015

Shelby Daytona Cobra Coupé

I took the photograph below at the Coys International Historic Festival meeting at Silverstone in July 1998.
It's a 1963 Shelby Daytona Cobra Coupé and was driven in the race by the owner, Rob Walton, who is the son of the late Sam Walton the founder of Walmart, and is now chairman of the company. The programme of the event says this about the Shelby Cobra:

'The car that finally knocked Ferrari off its perch, and won the World GT Championship, was one that combined British and American ideas. We refer, of course, to the immortal Shelby Cobra. Carroll Shelby of Texas had been one of America's top sportscar drivers in the 1950s and also raced sportscars in Europe with some success. After retiring he had the idea of taking a British production sportscar, renowned for its fine handling, and dropping in a small-block American V8 engine.
The rest is history. In 1962, the first Cobra appeared - an AC Ace chassis and body with a 4.2 litre Ford engine. Shelby started racing the cars straight away and the 4.2 engine soon gave way to a more powerful 4.7 version. Just as quickly, the Cobras became a worry to the Ferraris, not only in America but also in Europe, where they were raced in GT events. For the 1964 season, a 7-litre engine and stylish 'Daytona' bodywork were added and the Anglo-American hybrid came close to beating Ferrari to the World GT Championship. In 1965 it succeeded.
Spectators at the Coys International Historic Festival Presented by Chrysler are privileged to be able to see in action a rare survivor of the Daytona Cobra coupés, racing once more against the Ferraris, Aston Martins and Jaguars that it set out to beat.'

This Wikipedia article tells you about the Shelby Cobra and gives details of the six original cars. Rob Walton's car is chassis number CSX2286.

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