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

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

Penned by impartial automotive journalist Steve Statham


1 of the saddest facets when a life of accomplishment is cut quick is thinking about what might have been. That issue has surrounded the life of racing driver Ken Miles for a long time. There is no solution to such musings, of program. What is left for the men and women who realized and beloved him, and the racing fans who followed his job, is a tranquil appreciation for what he did attain — and that was a good deal.

Miles was the winner of innumerable athletics motor vehicle races in the 1950s and won the 1961 United States Car Club (USAC) Street Racing Championship. He was a Shelby-American crew driver and chief test driver in the 1960s. He gained the 24 Hrs of Daytona, the 12 Several hours of Sebring and the 1966 24 Hrs of Le Mans in actuality, if not officially. These achievements put him at the major of his activity, and Miles has obtained a effectively-deserved reintroduction to a more youthful era of racing fans thanks to the 2019 movie “Ford v Ferrari.”

This 1966 Shelby Team II Mustang is yet another chapter in the “what may have been” story of Ken Miles, and it will be supplied with No Reserve at the Barrett-Jackson 2023 Scottsdale Auction. In accordance to the Shelby American Vehicle Club (SAAC), Shelby American Environment Registry and Carroll Shelby himself, which is documented in the Unique Collector’s Version of Mustang Month-to-month January 1995 magazine, this Mustang was developed for Ken Miles to race. Tragically, Miles died in a crash while tests the Ford J-auto, the subsequent evolution in the GT40 plan, at Riverside Worldwide Raceway on August 17, 1966. He would never ever have the likelihood to generate the Mustang that was in the Shelby pipeline precisely for him to race.

It is interesting to contemplate what Miles could have accomplished at the rear of the wheel of this motor vehicle. The Team II Mustangs ended up constructed mostly to race in the recently produced Athletics Car Club of The us (SCCA) Trans-American Sedan Championship. Ford was intrigued in the Manufacturers’ Championship the new collection offered and approached Shelby American about making Mustangs to race in the Trans Am’s In excess of 2-Liter course. Shelby constructed 16 notchback 1966 Team II Mustangs, and this car or truck is the very well-identified 12th auto from that batch.

The Team II vehicles ended up crafted primarily making use of the GT350 R-Model blueprint, though there are differences amongst the two. Though modified to racing requirements by Shelby, the autos carried Ford serial quantities. The Mustangs have been developed to conform to FIA Team II regulations, so as opposed to the Shelby GT350 R-Designs, they have been essential to preserve the metal hood with out a scoop, all 4 seats in position and manufacturing unit glass home windows, between other aspects.

When we can ponder what Miles may have finished with the car or truck, we really do not have to picture the racing record of the Mustang by itself. It was raced as intended and has a lengthy list of achievements to its credit history. Its initially owner was driver John McComb, who competed extensively in SCCA activities. He drove the motor vehicle 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) aided Ford safe the Manufacturers’ Championship in its course in the 1st yr of the Trans-Am collection. McComb marketed the auto in 1967, but it continued to be raced into the early 1970s.

In 2014, this Group II Mustang was sent to Famous Motorcar in Halton Hills, Ontario, for a comprehensive concours restoration. It was disassembled and stripped to bare metallic, restored to suitable Shelby technical specs and refinished in its primary factory Wimbledon White paint with blue Le Mans stripes. It has the variety 41 painted on the hood, trunk lid and doors, a selection that McComb utilised to reveal the SCCA’s Area 4, and his Initial Position end therein.

The motor vehicle is run by an period-suitable Shelby American racing 289 Hi-Po V8 engine. It has been outfitted with the appropriate Hi-Po heads, Tri-Y headers, aluminum hi-increase consumption manifold #S2MS-9424-A, Holley 715 cfm carburetor #S2MS-3510-A, steel valve addresses with specially fabricated breathers and 7.5-quart Cobra finned aluminum oil pan. The motor is teamed with an period-correct BorgWarner T10 near-ratio 4-pace manual transmission with a make date of July 27, 1965. The energy is transferred to a Ford 9-inch Detroit Locker rear conclusion with 3.89 gears.

The inside is outfitted with a Shelby-correct 4-level roll bar, 3-inch level of competition lap belts, 16-inch 3-spoke steering wheel and 6 Carroll Shelby gauges. The suspension and brakes are real time period Shelby components, with a 19.1 swift steering box, 1-inch sway bar, override traction bars, KONI shocks, 11.3-inch front disc brakes and 10&#2152.5-inch wide rear drum brakes. The car or truck sits on the proper 15&#2157-inch American Racing magnesium wheels that show some patina, with wheels wrapped with accurate-style Firestone Indy 9.20&#21515-inch tires.

This Team II Shelby Mustang is a rolling historical past lesson and a significant component of both equally Shelby and Ford Motor Company’s racing legacies. As this kind of, it has been signed by Carroll Shelby, John McComb, Shelby GT350 Project Engineer Chuck Cantwell and Shelby mechanic Terry Doty. This Shelby was also featured on the protect and inside Sporting activities Vehicle Graphic December 1966 magazine which was signed by John McComb. This magazine along with intensive documentation is provided with the sale.

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

Jacquelin Burkhammer

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