When Carroll Shelby passed away in 2012, the world lost an automotive icon that can never be replaced. While Shelby’s star rose again in recent years, he never again approached the level of fame and acclaim that his products brought him during the 1960s. He was the face of Ford Performance, successfully transitioning from race car driver to team owner in just a few years and building an enduring legacy that lasts to this day.
This 16-minute Ford promotional film features all the famous goodies that made Shelby so great, from the Cobra and Daytona Coupe to the Shelby GT350 and Ferrari-beating Ford GT, back when it was still a “laboratory on wheels” as Shelby says. Shelby isn’t the only famous face to show up, with team drivers Pete Brock, Ken Miles, and Dan Gurney all making cameos at what was the height of their careers. Brock even takes the time to explain to viewers the value of driving “the line” through the course, giving racers the consistency they need to compete. Brock also talks about drivers who “try too hard”, losing control and power.
This video is classic Americana, filled with big American muscle cars back before the days when clean air and high fuel costs were on anybody’s mind. It’s pure Shelby promotional bliss, and while Brock steals the show for awhile Shelby eventually returns to talk about what it takes to prepare for every race. While he doesn’t have time to go into detail, the cars really speak for themselves even today, keeping Shelby’s name and legacy of performance alive.