Chassis Num: SFM5R106
Sold for $990,000 at 2012 RM Sothebys
There really cannot be a Mustang without Carroll Shelby. Let's face it, without the influence of the ambitious Texan the aforementioned ponycar likely would have been nothing more than a show pony, instead of the wild performer history recalls. And where it all started was the GT350. But even amongst this rare breed of Mustang there was selective breeding going on and only a total of 34 would ever be adorned with the 'R' model designation.
There would only be a total of 522 of the homologated Shelby GT350 to ever be produced from Shelby's plant in Venice, California in order that the GT350 could take part in SCCA/B production competition. However, even among the GT350 family, there would be a purer bloodline. Considered the 'most exciting version', the GT350R would go on to dominate SCCA's B/Production class winning the road racing championship for three straight years.
But what was the 'R' version of the GT350? According to the Shelby American Automobile Club Registry, it all started with the 'R' version as it is quoted as saying, 'Unlike most production race cars which are created by modifying the street version, the GT350 road car was in fact a detuned R-Model.' Therefore, the racing bloodline fostered, or gave birth, to its more sedated version of itself.
Each of Shelby's GT350 R models would be heavily-modified once they arrived for the Shelby American crew to transform. Some would have parts and components removed. Some would already arrive without the parts and components even installed. Shelby was against the clock having to build 100 examples of the model to conform to the homologation rules. However, when finished, each example was a turn-key race car ready to go to the track and compete at the highest level.
Once such example to be built for the racetrack would be SFM5R106. Considered one of the most original examples of the GT350R in existence, chassis SFM5R106 would begin its life as a GT350R when the order was received on the 21st of December, 1964. Production of the chassis would begin in Mach of 1965 and would finally be completed in June. When completed, the chassis would be mated with engine number 52127 and would produce no less than 325 hp.
Originally ordered by Jack Loftus in August of 1965, the car would be shipped from Los Angeles via TWA and would arrive at Jack Loftus Ford in Hinsdale, Illinois with its extra wide rear end and a price to match.
While the car was on its way to Loftus Ford in Hinsdale, one Richard Jordan would be finishing up the Carroll Shelby School of High Performance Driving in Riverside, California. Having completed the school, Mr. Jordan would return to his home of Downers Grove, Illinois and would come to purchase SFM5R106.
Once united, the two would set about racing at circuits all throughout the Midwest. Taking part in the Midwestern SCCA national events until the early 1970s, Richard Jordan would take part in a number of events from Elkhart Lake to Clermont to Wilmot Raceway. Many circuits would see the likes of Mr. Jordan and his Shelby GT350R.
Upon retiring from racing, Mr. Jordan wouldn't find it within himself to part with the car. Instead, he would determine to lock the car away in storage for a long period of time. It wouldn't be until 1986 when the car would emerge from its hiding place. A period of 21 years after Mr. Jordan originally purchased the car. As a result, it remained one of the very few, if not the only one, to have had only one owner in its history.
One year later, 1987, the car would be sold and Paul Zimmons of Potomac, Maryland would become the car's proud owner. He would have the car restored and would then take part in the Competition Class at SAAC-18 at Watkins Glen in 1993 where it would win the Gold Award.
Its winning tradition would continue when Paul Andrews, the car's next owner, entered the car in the SAAC-25 at Lime Rock Park in 2000. In that event the car would come away winning the Second Place Popular Vote.
Cared for and maintained by such people as Anthony Tomasi, Dave Christenholz and Colin Comer, SFM5R106 has always been well loved and highly maintained. The fact the car has only 4,800 original miles is perhaps the best demonstration of the love and care the car's owners have always bestowed upon the Shelby.
Complete with an impressive array of documentation, including photographs, titles, registrations and invoices there are still so many things about SFM5R106 that can be deemed as 'original'. Even in its present livery, 'original' is the only word that can adequately describe this particular GT350R. Still sporting its original Plexiglas and racing wheels, this chassis, which is being offered from a private collection, would make its way to the RM Auctions event in Monterey in 2012. And at that auction, and because of the rare and original nature of the car, the Shelby GT350R, chassis SFM5R106, would be expected to draw between $900,000 and $1,300,000.Sources:
'Lot No. 134: 1965 Shelby GT350R', (http://www.rmauctions.com/FeatureCars.cfm?SaleCode=mo12&CarID=r174). RM Auctions. http://www.rmauctions.com/FeatureCars.cfm?SaleCode=mo12&CarID=r174. Retrieved 1 January 2013.
'1965 Shelby Mustang GT350 News, Pictures and Information', (http://www.conceptcarz.com/vehicle/z1909/Ford-Mustang--GT350.aspx). Conceptcarz.com: From Concept to Production. http://www.conceptcarz.com/vehicle/z1909/Ford-Mustang--GT350.aspx. Retrieved 1 January 2013.By Jeremy McMullen
Chassis Num: SFM5R106
Sold for $990,000 at 2012 RM Sothebys
The first day the Ford Mustang was available to be purchased, around 22,000 eager buyers ponied up the cash for the new sports car. Though it looked aggressive, it would never be mistaken for a 'Total Performance' poster child, especially considering it was based on the running gear of Ford's Falcon economy compact. That all changed when Carroll Shelby was transforming it into a potential 'B' Production SCCA racer. Thus, the Shelby Mustang GT350 was born. The Shelby Mustang GT350 road car was basically a detuned R-Model. There were just 34 R-models built and all were Wimbledon white with blue stripes, and all were unbelievably competitive. They dominated SCCA B/Production racing in their first season.
At the time, Carroll Shelby was involved in building Cobras and supporting a busy racing effort, including the Ford GT40 MKII and the USRRC/USAC King Cobras. Realizing Mr. Shelby was very busy, most of the work for the Shelby Mustangs were done by Ford in-house.
SCCA required that a minimum of 100 cars be built before the beginning of the year. Ford agreed to supply Mustangs to Shelby's specifications, and Shelby picked through the Ford parts catalogue to specify the basic package that would lend itself to road racing. A few fairly simple upgrades were made in the Shelby American shop, a project headed by Chuck Cantwell. The production cars and all the R-models were specially built in sequence at Ford's San Jose, California factory in Wimbledon White with black interiors and 271 horsepower K-code engines, aluminum case Borg Warner T-10M four-speed transmissions, nine-inch rear axle with Fairlane station wagon drum brakes. Also included were 'export' shock tower brace, and sintered metallic brake pads and lining. The hoods, rear seats, radios and exhaust systems were left in the San Jose shop. An additional 15 cars were made even more special, as they arrived at Shelby without side or rear windows, heaters, defroster, upholstery, headliners, insulation, or sound deadening. These were the first R-models.
All of the Mustang GT350s essentially received the same suspension modifications. The front suspension upper A-arm chassis pivots were lowered an inch and Koni shocks were installed, along with a one-inch front sway bar and quick ratio steering kits. The K-shaped 'export' brace was augmented with another bar joining the tops of the shock towers. The leaf spring suspended rear axles got traction bars and Detroit 'no-spin' locking differentials.
The hoods were constructed from fiberglass with coil air intake scoops. Inside were wood-rim steering wheels, and a fiberglass shelf where the rear seats had been. Batteries were mounted in the trunk for better weight distribution and a Shelby tack and oil pressure gauge were installed in a dash top mounted pod. Keeping the drivers safe were three-inch competition style lap belts.
After meeting the homologation requirements and receiving permission for the Shelby Mustangs to race in SCCA competition, Shelby American began work on creating truly special versions that could dominate the races. Using the production GT350 as a base, Shelby worked on improving handling, increasing power, and improving reliability. The least of these concerns was the handling; the Shelby Mustangs had excellent handling.
Valley Porting Services extensively modified the engine's heads. A Holley four-barrel carburetor on a Cobra high-rise aluminum intake manifold was installed, with Tri-Y headers built by Cyclone handling the exhaust. Horsepower rose to 325 to 360 depending on tuning. The front and rear fenders were flared to accept American Racing 15x7 five-spoke wheels. Since the engines output increased, an oil cooler was mounted behind the special high capacity radiators. More air flow was required, so the R-models were given a new front body apron constructed from fiberglass with a deep air intake flanked by brake cooling air scoops.
An additional 25 pounds were saved by using Plexiglas side windows with aluminum frames. A special Plexiglas rear window was formed, which fitted the rear light opening with a two-inch gap at the top to exhaust air from the interior and smooth air flow over the rear body. Another benefit was an additional (report) five miles per hour to the vehicle's top speed. A four-point roll bar was installed, along with a large 34-gallon baffled fuel tank fabricated from the bottoms of two standard Mustang tanks.
The Shelby Mustang R-models could be purchased from the Ford dealer and taken straight to SCCA where it could compete against the highest level of competition.
This example, chassis SFM5R106, was sent to Shelby American on December 21st of 1964 for its conversion into a GT350 R. Work began in March and ended in June. When the work was completed, the engine was rated at 325 horsepower. The car was ordered by Jack Loftus in August of 1965 and the completed car was shipped from the Los Angeles Airport to O'Hare International Airport, via TWA, for delivery to Jack Loftus Ford, of Hinsdale, Illinois, with an extra 4.11 rear end. The total cost for this GT350 R was $6,105, more than twice that of regular, stock Ford Mustang.
The original owner of this car was Richard Jordan, of Downers Grove, Illinois. Prior to taking the car racing, Grove participated in Carroll Shelby School of High Performance Driving at Riverside, California. Mr. Jordan used the GT350R in Midwestern SCCA national events until the early-1970s.
After its racing career, Jordan placed the car into storage, where it remained until 1986. Paul Zimmons of Potomac, Maryland purchased the car in 1987 and restored the car before it won the Gold Award in the Competition Class at SAAC-18, in Watkins Glen in 1993. Paul Andrews of New Jersey later became the cars next owner. He also used the car in competition, winning Second Place Popular Vote at SAAC-25, at Lime Rock Park in 2000. Since that time, the car has been owned by Anthony Tomasi of Wilmington, Massachusetts, then Dave Christenholz of Paradise Valley, Arizona, and more recently, in 2007, by Colin Comer. When Mr. Comer acquired the car, it had just 4,800 original miles from new, all accumulated on race tracks, and rode on its original magnesium American wheels. Current, the car has only 4,858 miles on its odometer.
The current owner has continued to preserve this time capsule.
In 2012, the car was offered for sale at RM Auction's Monterey sale. It was estimated to sell for $900,000 - $1,300,000. As bidding came to a close, the car had been sold for the sum of $990,000 inclusive of buyer's premium.By Daniel Vaughan | Dec 2012