Thursday, June 20, 2019

RETRO: Ford's Iconic GT Racer says C'est la Vie' for Now

One of Ford's iconic, Nasty 427cid Big Block V-8 GT 40 Mk II's with its Arch rival Ferrari 250LM on display at the IMS Museum, circa 2012. (The Tomaso Collection)
As I suppose it's accomplished Job 1 for FoMoCo'

As History denotes, 53yrs ago, Ford Motor Company finally broke the Prancing Horse's Stranglehold upon Circuit de la Sarthe with an emphatic 1-2-3 victory romp over Ferrari with its Nasty Ford GT 40 Mk II's led by the duo of Shelby American entries ahead of its Seester' Holman & Moody mount.

As it was the Dearborn Auto Manufacturer's wish to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of said triumph at Le Mans which saw the re-introduction of the Ford GT in its second iteration returning to competition in France three years ago.

As appropriately, the No. 68 Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) entry with Joey Hand, Dirk Mueller and Hometown Boy Sealmeister B', aka Sebastain Bourdais at its controls took thoust Chequered Flag First in the GTE Pro category by finishing 18th Overall!

Leading a Ford GT 1-3-4 class finish ironically with only the No. 82 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 GTE spoiling Ford from sweeping the LM Gran Tourismo Evolution Professional category's podium with its runner-up finish.

Although it hasn't been all Champagne 'N Bubbly' for FoMoCo' at Le Mans, as Aston Martin won GTE Pro Class Honours in 2017 and Porsche did likewise last year.

Although the Ford GT finished runner-up to Aston Martin in 2017 after both cars were able to slip by the leading Corvette of Jordan Taylor's stricken C7.R which ultimately shredded it's tyre after trying to hold off the Aston Martin Vantage of Johnny Adam in his best Rodney Sandstorm; Err Cole Trickle Racin's Rubbin' impersonation...

Fast forwarding to 2019, Jason Bourne and Bruce Wayne's Alter Egos Matt Damon & Christian Bale jointly waved the Green Flag for this year's Indianapolis 500, primarily to promote their upcoming racing film Ford V Ferrari, Le Mans 1966.

Whilst Y'all can check out the movie trailer which was appropriately released just prior to this year's 24 Heurs du Mans, naturally to get us All Geeked Up over its impending release to the Big Screens this November...

Originally I had Zero Clue who Bale was playing? Subsequently learning he's playing Ken Miles in the film opposite Damon's role as Carroll Shelby. For which due to my Blue Oval allegiance, along with Roberto introducing me to the world 'O Shelby American lore, I've known about Ken Miles since the early 1990's.

As I'm hoping this film will make its way to teeny-tiny, Itsy-bitzy Florence this Fall, since I look forward to seeing it, along with wondering how they'll address the Farcical Photo Finish Op! Or Miles subsequent fatality?

As hopefully the next time Ford goes endurance racing, preferably with another rendition of the Ford GT, it'll be battling for Overall W's instead of just lower tier Class victories...

(Photo c/o No Fenders ‘Offical Photographer CARPETS')