Rob Kinnan
Brand Manager, Mustang Monthly
May 22, 2017

Readers of this website need no introduction to Carroll Shelby. The racer, builder, and automotive entrepreneur that created not just a legendary model of performance Mustang and had race wins across the globe, all while having a down-home, Texas-style good ol’ boy personality and heart, is an icon in not just Mustang and Ford circles, but also the entire in the entire spectrum of automobilia.

Carroll died on May 10, 2012, but his legend and thousands of devoted fans and current Team Shelby members around the world will never allow his spirit to disappear. That was on full display at the 5th Annual Carroll Shelby Tribute and Car Show at Carroll Shelby International headquarters in Gardena, California, on May 20, 2017. The Tribute and car show is a gathering of Shelby owners and enthusiasts, famous Shelby team members and racers, and many other “dignitaries” to honor Carroll’s memory and bench race like good racers do about the good, the bad, and the funny.

The event was free to attend for spectators, and it allowed you to literally rub shoulders with legendary Shelby team members like Allen Grant and drag racers Don “the Snake” Prudhomme (who had his cammer-powered Shelby Super Snake Top Fuel dragster with him) and Roland “The Hawaiian” Leong, among several other names known to the Shelby faithful. Author Art Evans was also on hand selling signed copies of Carroll Shelby: A Collection of My Favorite Racing Photos. Of course, the two new Shelby vehicles unveiled on the Thursday before the Tribute were present as well; the Shelby F-150 Super Snake Street Truck and the radical S550-based Wide Body Super Snake Mustang concept, a hand-built one-off that is being considered for production. (We’ll be shocked if it isn’t built—it’s just too awesome looking not to be).

On a lighter note, “Team Shelby Racing” held a fun tricycle race with some of those celebrities and Shelby personnel racing each other on big-kid’s tricycles around an indoor “road course” set up with pylons o the slick concrete shop floor. Two of the races pitted Shelby President Gary Patterson against Vice President Vince Laviolette against each other, and Tracey Smith (Executive Vice President Licensing & Media Relations) against Jenni Shreeves (Executive Director, Carroll Shelby Foundation) facing off against each other. Anyone could join and race for one dollar, which went straight to the Foundation.

It was a warm and sunny day in Gardena, and even though it’s a worn-out cliché to say “a good time was had by all,” it truly applied to the 5th Annual Carroll Shelby Tribute and Car Show. Mustang360.com will certainly be back to cover the 6th Annual show!

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