2012 INTERMOUNTAIN CONCOURS D’ELEGANCE TO FEATURE EXHIBIT HONORING CARROLL SHELBY
Posted Bi Miguel Caparros
Posted Bi Miguel Caparros
Eight Cars from Larry H. Miller Total Performance Museum at Miller Motorsports Park Highlight Display
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (August 01, 2012) – Eight historically significant cars from the Larry H. Miller Total Performance Museum at Miller Motorsports Park will be on display at the 2012 Intermountain Concours d’Elegance September 22, 2012. These special cars comprise the centerpiece for a display honoring legendary automotive designer and racecar driver Carroll Shelby. “We’re overwhelmed by the incredible cars being brought to our event by the Miller family, and see this as an outstanding way to not only pay tribute to Carroll Shelby, but to also carry forward Larry Miller’s passion for the cars Shelby built, raced and influenced,” said Chris Purdhum, Concours Chairman.
Carroll Shelby created the iconic Shelby Cobra sports car, and he developed the Shelby Mustang and the Ford GT40. He managed racing teams for Ford Motor Company that won championships on both sides of the Atlantic. He inspired thousands of people through his long career, and one of those people was the late Larry H. Miller.
Reflecting on the loss of his friend, Shelby said in a 2011 interview, “It was a sad day when we lost Larry, especially the way we had to lose him. He was my friend for many years. He was one of the first early collectors of my Cobras. He recognized before anybody that they were going to be worth something someday. You can’t say enough superlatives about Larry. He was a very giving man, and he was an absolute workaholic: he’s the only guy I ever knew besides Roger Penske who worked 36 hours a day. I loved Larry.”
“This display will not only be incredible to witness up close and personal, it will serve to educate event visitors about the magnificent vision and creative genius of Carroll Shelby. From the first Cobra that raced, to the Cobra one can spot in the movie “Viva Las Vegas”, this is something everyone needs to experience,” said Purdum. Early Concours entries value well over $15,000,000 and the event is attracting collectors from as far away as Florida.
About Miller Motorsports Park and the Larry H. Miller Total Performance Automobile Museum Once he had achieved some success as an auto dealer, Larry Miller finally found an opportunity to purchase a Shelby Cobra. One Cobra led to another, and another, and another, and the result is the Larry H. Miller Total Performance Automobile Museum. A few of Larry’s cars are on loan to the Shelby American Collection in Colorado, but the majority of his collection resides at his state-of-art motorsports complex, Miller Motorsports Park, located just outside Salt Lake City in Tooele, Utah. Almost every car on display is capable of being driven, and until Larry’s death in February 2009, a number of them competed in vintage racing events on both sides of the Atlantic. More: http://www.millermotorsportspark.com
Following is a list of historically significant cars from the Larry H. Miller Total Performance Museum that will be on display Saturday, September 22, 2012 at the Intermountain Concours d’Elegance at The Gardens of Thanksgiving Point in Lehi, Utah.
1964 Shelby Cobra CSX-2299: This is one of six specially-built coupes built to compete on European tracks that were longer and faster than American tracks. They were nicknamed “Daytona Coupes” after they made their debut in the 1964 24 Hours of Daytona. This was the second built, and has the best racing record of them all, finishing first in the GT class and fourth overall in its debut race at Le Mans with Dan Gurney and Bob Bondurant (handing Ferrari its first defeat in the GT class at Le Mans since the class was established in 1959), and took the same result in the season-ending Tourist Trophy at Goodwood in England with Gurney. It also took first in GT and second overall in the 1965 24 Hours of Daytona (Jo Schlesser/Hal Keck) and first in GT/fourth overall in the 1965 12 Hours of Sebring (Bondurant/Schlesser), helping Shelby become the first (and, to date, only) American manufacturer to win the FIA GT World Manufacturers Championship. CSX-2299 is considered the most valuable Cobra in existence, and perhaps the most valuable car in America.
1966 Ford GT40 Mk II P-1015: One of the most significant Ford GT40s ever, this Mk II finished second in what was arguably the most controversial finish in the history of the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans. This car, co-driven by Ken Miles and Denis Hulme, was leading in the final hour, with another GT40 (Jacky Ickx/Chris Amon) in second on the same lap. Ford executives called for a “photo finish” and the Ickx/Amon car actually took the checkered flag first, robbing Shelby development driver Miles, who had already won at Daytona and Sebring that year, the chance to be the first man to win the “Big 3” of endurance races (Daytona/Sebring/Le Mans).
1962 Shelby Cobra CSX-2002: This was the third Cobra ever built, and the first built in Carroll Shelby’s shop in Venice, California. It was also the first Cobra ever to race, driven by Billy Krause in the Los Angeles Times Grand Prix at California’s Riverside International Raceway in October 1962.
1967 Ford GT Mk IV J4: The final iteration of the Ford GT, only four J-Car prototypes were built before Mk lV production was finalized. This is the final prototype chassis and the car utilized in testing to determine the final body shape of the Mk lV. It raced only once, in the 1967 12 Hours of Sebring with Mario Andretti and Bruce McLaren, but it qualified on pole and won the race, bringing the first victory for a Mk IV.
1963 Shelby Cobra CSX-2128: This was one of two Cobras built for the 1963 12 Hours of Sebring with rack-and-pinion steering. In its original color scheme, it was photographed to appear on the cover of “Hey Little Cobra,” a record album recorded by The Rip Chords. This was the car that caused Larry Miller to fall in love with Cobras. In January 2005, Larry purchased this car after placing highest bid at auction against none other than George Lucas, who had been on the crew when the car was subsequently owned by San Francisco-based Allan Grant and designed the livery used on the car at that time, which was reversed from the original black-with-yellow scheme.
1962 Shelby Cobra CSX-2019: This unrestored Cobra was originally a “PR car” for Shelby, used in promotional pieces and magazine articles. It was painted different colors for different magazine features, to appear as though there were many cars. In the summer of 1963, it was rented to MGM Studios for use in the Elvis Presley movie “Viva Las Vegas” (red Cobra No. 98). In late 1963, it became the “Dragonsnake,” or drag racing-equipped Cobra, with which employees from Shelby’s production-car facility won a national championship and spurred a line of drag-racing parts offered by Shelby.
1964 Shelby Cobra CSX-2488: This Cobra was built as a USRRC team car. It was raced by team drivers Dan Gerber (scion of the Gerber Baby Food family), Bob Johnson and Ed Leslie from 1964-66. It won overall at Mosport (FIA) and Grattan (SCCA) in 1965, and was first in class at Mid-Ohio (USRRC) and second in class at Nassau (FIA). After the 1966 24 Hours of Daytona, it was loaned to Universal Studios for the movie “Redline 7000”. Gerber bought the car himself in 2000. Legend has it that he changed the Gerber Baby Food can on the doors to read “Prune Mush” in deference to his advancing age.
1965 Shelby Mustang GT-350R SFM5R535: Shelby Mustangs are among the most collectible cars in the world, but the most desirable of them all are the 36 GT-350Rs built in 1965 as pure racing cars. This car is number 35 of only 36 purpose-built race cars assembled in Carroll Shelby’s first shop in Venice, California.
Cindy A. Meitle/CAR PR USA
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