Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Cobra-Ferrari Wars

The Shelby American Collection’s 15th Anniversary Bash
On a breezy warm August afternoon in Gunbarrel, otherwise known as North Boulder, Colorado, a select group of Mustang and Ferrari car racing enthusiasts were privileged to attend a momentous fundraiser in support of pioneer racer Carroll Shelby’s Mustang car museum.
Cars for viewing (and drooling over) at this 15th anniversary event included sleek Ferraris, sporty Ford Mustang GT 500s, locally owned vintage 1960s series Cobras, select one-of-a-kind Corvettes, a distinguished older Jaguar, a well preserved (and still running) 1953 Cunningham-style Ferrari and a newer model 2011 Aston Martin V12 Vantage that was so sophisticated and refined, it seemed that James Bond would show up at any moment. Alas, James Bond was NOT in attendance, but even better for those 1960s racing enthusiasts, a featured special guest, Bob Bondurant, was.
Bob Bondurant raced cars back in the same 1960s time period as Carroll Shelby and their contemporaries. He was among the first American race car drivers to help overthrow Ferrari’s dominance in the European racing circuit. In 1995, Shelby and his team became the first US manufacturer to beat Ferrari during the FIA World Sports Car Manufacturers Championship series of racing.
Many victories and decades later, Bob Bondurant is the current owner of the Bob Bondurant Racing School based in Chandler, Arizona. Bob was gracious in meeting with his many awestruck admirers at this 15th anniversary gala event and patiently answered a few questions from those gathered around him before moving on to the museum area.
Other notable activities at this 15th anniversary celebration included an on-site barbeque with open bar by Green’s Point Catering out of Longmont, Colorado and admission to the on-site Shelby American Collection of Mustang cars. The Museum also hosted a silent auction featuring Shelby Cobra-related posters and memorabilia. I placed a bid on the exquisitely crafted lead crystal Mustang car model but, sadly, was outbid, much to my husband’s relief. Outside the Museum, a band performed '60s tunes to which all could rock and roll. Nostalgia was the word of the day to those in attendance!
Presently open to the public only on Saturdays with an admission of $5 USD per person, the Shelby Mustang American Collection Museum highlights the history that Carroll Shelby’s Cobra cars played in smashing Ferrari’s road racing dominance until 1995. A historic collection of vintage Cobras and GT Mustangs are featured at this museum with pictoral and printed documentation of selected races from the era.

Shelby American Collection
5020 Chaparral Court
Boulder, Colorado 80301
(303) 516-9565
Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving, Gate 3
20000 South Maricopa Rd
Chandler, AZ 85226
(480) 403-7600

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