LALD 2020: 'Murican Monday - Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe

Bob Bondurant's 1000 km Rennen Nürburgring winner from 1965

Ok, that's not really the model of the 1965 Nürburgring 1000 winner, but the same car in the same color and from the same model year, bearing the same number as Bondurant's car.

For a Monday, the 4th day of the #lald2020 week, I picked an 'Murican classic, the Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe. This a 1/43 scale model made by a Chinese manufacturer that seems to sell models like this one under various brand names like Yat Ming / Road Signature / Road Legends etc.

Bob Bondurant had never raced at the Nürburgring before the 1965 1000 km race that he won in this car. When he first got to the track much before the race, he found that the track had a driving school where they taught Porche owners how to take the safe line round the 'Ring.

One of the driving instructors there was Jochen Neerpasch who had known about Caroll Shelby's Cobras and had driven them. And knowing Shelby's modus operandi at international races was to hire a couple of local drivers to race along side his main pilots, Bondurant convinced Shelby to hire Neerpasch to be his co-driver.

During qualifying, Bondurant and Neerpasch set a new class record of 9:18.5 over the 14 mile 'Ring that would stand for 15 years.

During the race, the Daytona Coupes ran a strong race with Bondurant's #54 car building up a commanding lead in its class winning easily and finish 5th overall.

Ultimately, three of the four Daytona Coupes ended up on the class podium at the Ring that year, continuing Shelby American's domination of GT racing that year.

Bob Bondurant and the Shelby Daytona Coupe steamrolled their class rivals, the Ferrari 250 GTO, winning 7 out of the 10 races en route to the overall 1965 FIA Manufacturers' World Championship trophy.


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