In the motoring world, there are probably very few motorheads who haven't seen the most recent performance movie, "Ford v. Ferrari," about the famed automaker duel of the 1960s. Specifically, the film detailed the labors of one of the best drivers of the time, Ken Miles, and one of the best team leaders, Carroll Shelby, as they tried to make Ford into a world-class competitor in such venues as the 24 Hours of LeMans, one of racing's premier enduros.
Movie Documents Ford versus Ferrari Battle
The primarily real movie documents the insults that Henry Ford had to endure from Enzo Ferrari, which started the competition. Miles was not only a consummate driver but also one of the best automotive engineering test pilots of the era. Battling everything from corporate interference to heat problems, Miles and Shelby put together three copies of the iconic Ford GT40.
Though the GT40 debuted nearly half a century ago, it still holds a special place in the motoring world. Who can forget the 1-2-3 win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, where the GT40s lined up in a V-formation and motored across the finish line and into racing history?
Indeed, according to sources like Wikipedia, the legendary GT40 would go on to win LeMans four times from 1966 to 1960. The same sources noted that the 1967 version was the only American effort to win the enduro.
Ford is about to return to Le Mans in the new, seventh-generation Mustang. Torque News detailed the new Mustang at length last week. You can find the information about the new Mustang here at Ford introduces its seventh-generation Mustang
Mustang Races Around The World
"Mustang is raced at all the great tracks around the world, but there is no race or track that means more to our history than Le Mans," said Bill Ford, executive chair, at The Stampede, the debut of the all-new seventh-generation Ford Mustang. "It's where we took on Ferrari and won in the 1960s and where we returned 50 years later and shocked the world again. Mustang will go back to Le Mans. Once again, we will Go Like Hell." The Stampede was a herd of Fords that converged on Detroit for the Mustang intro.
Ford famously took the Ford GT 40 to Le Mans 24 Hours beginning in 1964 and triumphed in 1966, sweeping the podium with a 1-2-3 finish. Then, 50 years later, to the day, Ford did it again – winning the Le Mans 24 Hours with Ford Chip Ganassi Racing and the Ford GT, with another Ford GT finishing third. Mustang previously raced at Le Mans in 1967 and 1997.
"The Mustang GT3 will be eligible in 2024," said Mark Rushbrook, global director, Ford Performance Motorsports. "We look forward to seeing Mustang race there."
Marc Stern has been an automotive writer since 1971 when an otherwise normal news editor said, "You're our new car editor," and dumped about 27 pounds of auto stuff on my desk. I was in heaven as I have been a gearhead from my early days. As a teen, I spent the usual number of misspent hours hanging out at gas stations Shell and Texaco (a big thing in my youth) and working on cars. From there on, it was a straight line to my first column for the paper, "You Auto Know," an enterprise I handled faithfully for 32 years. Not many people know that I also handled computer documentation for a good part of my living while writing YAN. My best writing, though, was always in cars. My work has appeared in Popular Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, AutoWeek, SuperStock, Trailer Life, Old Cars Weekly, Special Interest Autos, etc. You can follow me on: Twitter or Facebook.