Eric English
July 21, 2014
This’65 GT is yet another.
We were shocked by the absence of a single Boss 429 in Vegas—unless one turned up on Sunday after we had to board our flight home. Perhaps even more shocking was the presence of two 427 SOHC-powered early fastbacks! One was this gorgeous street machine.
Chris Brooke’s dad bought this ’65 G.T. 350 brand-new, and removed the G.T. 350 tape logos right away to hide the Shelby’s identity from the insurance man. Chris has recently written a small book relating the endless escapades he had while driving the car as a teenager in the late ’60s (www.itsnotyourfaultcarrollshelby.com). The car remains a completely unrestored time capsule, and still sports the Boss 302 engine, which Chris’ dad installed in the early ’70s.
We imagine the stack-injected 427ci SBF makes this first-gen convertible restomod really sing!


Old-School vs. New-School

Fifty years of Mustang evolution has brought us a great new car in the form of the '15 model, but it also presents an opportunity to study vintage cars built past and present. Reviewing several old-school/new-school builds reveals how things are done very differently depending on the era:

Old School—Open Track/Road Race
Brad Smith is cool with his old school ’66 Shelby, and so are we. Brad and his brother built the car in 1971, after finding the G.T. 350H shell in a SoCal wrecking yard. Soon, the boys were racing SCCA B-Production and having a blast. Much of those days remain, what with big flares, American 200Ss (w/265 and 295/50-15s), and a Bud Moore mini plenum equipped Boss 302. In an age of chalk mark restorations, Smith’s Shelby stands tall as ever!

New School—Open Track/Road Race
Kudos to Ron and Kim Schoch for running their extensively modified ’65 fastback at the open track on Friday, and then having it all cleaned up for the show field on Saturday. Ron painted the car himself using Dupont Hot Hues Bombay Blue. Note the shaved drip rails, ’05 quarter glass, and ’05 door handles. A healthy 347 belts out something near 500 horsepower, and the suspension includes a Rod and Custom Mustang II-based front, and Control Freaks IRS out back.

Old School—Drag Race
Larry Knapp owned the other SOHC powered Stang we referenced earlier, and it’s got quite a story. Knapp is the original owner, having purchased it from the famed Foulger Ford in Monrovia, California. Knapp raced it with a 289 for several years, but then in 1969 took it to Holman Moody Stroppe in Long Beach for a drag conversion to include fitting of the SOHC motor, and extensive fiberglass body panels. It’s been a racer ever since, with a recent high 8/151-mph pass at the Hot Rod Reunion in Bakersfield. Knapp tells us the current Cammer was the last engine built by Ford guru Earl Wade, who passed away in 2012.

New School—Drag Race
Unfortunately, we never caught up with the owner of this fine ’67 quarter horse, but we were impressed nonetheless. The hoodscoop denotes a 335-series powerplant, and this machine is as beautiful as it is state of the art. Full tube chassis, big engine setback, nitrous, and the list goes on.

Old School—Street Machine
Can you say time warp? This ’69 Mach 1 was straight out of the best of 1975, with a Dyer’s 6-71 blower atop a big FE, giant Appliance slotted mags, and yellow slapper bars. If you think we’re dissing on this thing, you’re wrong—the car was immaculate, and we appreciate the owner bringing it out!

New School—Street Machine
This gorgeous Acapulco Blue ’69 Mach 1 had a killer stance going for it, as well as a butter smooth 4.6 Two-Valve modular from something like a Crown Vic. Not huge power, but no doubt an incredible and reliable driver.