Donald Farr
Former Editor, Mustang Monthly
October 1, 2007

For 33 years, the Oklahoma Region of the Shelby American Automobile Club has been celebrating the cars from Shelby American during its annual Mid-America Performance Ford and Shelby Meet. Known simply as the Mid-America Shelby Meet when Jim Wicks organized the first event in 1974, the gathering was originally an opportunity for owners of '62-'70 Shelby vehicles, including Cobras and Mustangs, to share camaraderie and advice. Later, the group added driving events to the program and began welcoming other performance Fords, igniting the tradition of an early June Shelby meet in the middle of the U.S.

For the first 32 years at Mid-America, Shelby Mustangs were something to be fondly remembered. This year, for the first time ever, they were something to anticipate. Shelby Automobiles made a big splash at the event by unveiling the new Super Snake package, showing off the upcoming '08 Shelby GT500KR, debuting the '08 Shelby GT convertible, and unveiling the new Shelby Parts program in conjunction with Scott Drake. The huge Shelby Automobiles tractor-trailer rig was a major presence all weekend, with company President Amy Boylan and Vice President Gary Patterson making themselves available to attendees.

New Shelbys-from GT500s to Hertz GT-Hs-mingled with old ones during all of the Mid-America events, starting Thursday with the first day of open track at Hallett Motor Racing Circuit. On Thursday night, more than 500 cars cruised from the Marriott to the downtown Brookside area. It was back to Hallett on Friday for more open track, as well as special races for vintage and late-model Mustangs, followed by a manufacturer's reception at the Marriott and drag racing on Saturday at Tulsa Raceway Park. Saturday evening's banquet featured speakers Bob Adams from Steeda, Ford Car Marketing Manager Robert Parker, and Amy, who pulled the wraps off the '08 Shelby GT500KR. The event finished on Sunday with the car show, held this year on the larger, tree-lined east side of the Marriott.

The Mid-America Performance Ford and Shelby Meet has become one of the premier Ford events in the country, not only for its variety of activities but also because of its friendly and laid-back Oklahoma personality. Not only does the event draw movers and shakers such as Ford's Robert Parker and Shelby Automobiles' Amy Boylan, it's also a chance for attendees to visit with Mustang industry people such as Shannon Guderian from Latemodel Restoration Supply, Dario Orlando from Steeda, George Huisman from Classic Design Concepts, Jason Childress from Gateway Classic Mustang, Concours Judge Ed Meyer, and Jeff Yergovich from R&A Motorsports. Carroll Shelby has even been known to attend. You never know who might be riding on the Marriott elevator with you.