Donald Farr
Former Editor, Mustang Monthly
September 24, 2012

The Mid America Ford and Shelby Nationals celebrated 38 years along with 50 years of Shelby American It's more like a family reunion than a car event. After 38 years, attendees at the Mid America Ford and Shelby Nationals share more in common than just the common bond of Shelbys, Mustangs, and Fords. Many have also shared nearly four decades of bench-racing in the parking lot, hanging with Ford industry celebs in the Marriott lobby, and partying the night away with karaoke in the hotel's Remington lounge. I've heard many of the stories--and have witnessed some as well.

The 38th annual edition of Mid America continued the tradition of "something for everyone" with four days of open track at Oklahoma's Hallett Motor Racing Circuit, a Thursday evening cruise to Tulsa's Brady Arts District, Friday evening banquet with Ford and Shelby American executives, all-day Saturday drag racing, Sunday car show, and the usual (or unusual) swap meet and manufacturer's midway that migrates from venue to venue. This year's event, held on June 13-17, also incorporated Shelby American's 50th Anniversary Tour with special cars and even a rare appearance by the new Shelby 1000. Ford Motor Company was well-represented by new vehicles, including '13 Shelby GT 500s and Boss 302s, and people, including marketing execs Steve Ling, Jim Owens, and Steve Denby, not to mention Henry Ford III who dropped in as the banquet's keynote speaker and also got in a few '13 Shelby GT 500 laps at both Hallett and on the quarter-mile at Tulsa Raceway Park. As we always say at Mid America, you never know who you might be riding with in the Marriott elevator.

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One of Friday's highlights is the exhibition race for vintage race cars. If you want to know what it looked and sounded like in the 1960s, this is the place to find out.