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Then This Happened!

You may not recognize this as a signature, however, I assure you it is.

This is Peter Brock's autograph on my Cobra Daytona Coupe Factory Five replica. But before I digress with "The Rest Of The Story", let me take you back to "The Beginning Of The Story"...

Several months ago, a new car show event popped up on the Petersen Museum's webpage, entitled, "Bruce Meyer's American Car Cruise-In", scheduled for January 26, 2020. I was puzzled at first by this title because in typical Petersen Museum fashion, previous January cruise-in's featured Shelby American cars.

In addition, the photo that accompanied the event details was from the Carroll Shelby Cruise-In two years ago! And if you look closely at the left background you'll see a peek of my Daytona Coupe just behind the dark blue/yellow stripes Cobra!

Despite the unusual title, the cruise-in event didn't at all disappoint. And here's a hint why! In the event description, which was cryptic at best, was this hidden gem: After the cruise-in, stick around for a one-of-a-kind panel featuring Peter Brock, Peter Miles, Aaron Shelby, A.J. Baime, Allen Grant, Lenny Shabes, and Charles Agapiou.

That little tidbit was certainly close enough to convince me that I had to be there, with the Daytona Coupe, to see and hear Peter Brock, among the other Shelby American dignitaries who would be present.

Then the wheels started turning.

Watching the chatter on Facebook about this upcoming event, it became evident that this was going to be more than an American Car Cruise-in...much more. The hints were in the names on the panel discussion. Literally, it involved numerous Shelby American employees. And, A. J. Baime, the author of Go Like Hell, which was the basis for the Ford vs Ferrari movie was also on the panel.

So as this began to unfold, it turned into an over-the-top Shelby American event!

Bruce Meyer's Competition Cobra – the first production competition Cobra, CSX2001.

Dennis M's. '65 G.T. 350.

But wait! There's more!

In an E-mail exchange with Peter Brock, I told him that I planned to attend the Cruise-In with the Daytona Coupe and would he consider signing the Daytona's dash. Peter wrote back that he'd be glad to sign the Daytona!

Then, there was the Shelby American panel discussion, emceed by none other than Bruce Meyer.

L. to R. – Bruce Meyer, Alan Grant, Lenny Shabes, Peter Brock, Charles Agapiou, Peter Miles, Aaron Shelby, and A. J. Baime.

L. to R. – Bruce Meyer, A. J. Baime, Lenny Shabes, Alan Grant, Charles Agapiou, Peter Miles, Peter Brock, Aaron Shelby.

Once it became apparent to all the Shelbyphiles in the area that the Shelby American employees and relatives were going to be on the panel, well, as you'd expect, the cars came out in droves for the Cruise-In. And the turnout didn't disappoint!

Bob L's GT40

Peter Brock's 'driver'...

Peter Brock's 'one-of-one' DeTomaso P70 project.

The original design of the body by Peter Brock had been sent from Shelby in California to the coachbuilder in Italy, Shelby wasn’t impressed with the finished product so he sent Brock to Italy to personally supervise the building of a new body with the team at Carrozzeria Fantuzzi, a Modena-based coachbuilder.

The car would eventually see the start grid of a race at the 1966 Grand Prix of Mugello, sadly it would fail to finish the first lap. It would remain in Alejandro’s collection for decades, eventually ending up in a private Southern California collection.

You can learn much more about this remarkable project (and the story behind the story) in Peter's book, The Road To Modena. It's on Peter's website here:

Bernie K's G.T. 350H.

A Superformance GT 40 from Hillbank.

As a recovering motorcycle rider myself, this really cool Aermacchi 350 SS bike stopped by for the show, too!

But if that's not enough, then there was a thread uncovered before the Cruise-In about a few 'movie cars' from that movie, Ford vs Ferrari.

If you've seen the movie, you'll recognize these Movie Cars!

That 'guy' in the Petersen jacket (just right of center) is Allen Grant!

Even though it's a Corvette, it is one of the Movie Cars.

So then, following the panel discussion, the panelists all sat to sign posters, books, the back of t-shirts, and anything else they could autograph. Peter Brock and A. J. Baime seated in the foreground.

Then this happened...

You'll recall that I had asked Peter Brock before the Cruise-In if he would autograph my Daytona Coupe. I waited until the signing session was over. Peter was ready. We had to walk about 60 yards to get to the Coupe, so we had a few minutes to talk about the process he used to get his concept from the drawings which were in his mind's eye to building the wood buck on a Cobra chassis, to fit Ken Miles inside, to create the aluminum body. It was fascinating to listen to Pete talk about this historic time! 90-days to build the first (of six) Daytona Coupe, CSX2287.

We arrived at the Coupe. Peter was excited (me, even more so!) to jump right in and sign. Peter knows something about getting in and out of a Coupe!

So, to Peter Brock, the designer & builder of the original Cobra Daytona Coupe, I am exceptionally grateful that you dreamed big, and created this championship racing automobile that conquered Le Mans and Ferrari with the Shelby American Team.

As the ShelbyGuy, I am honored and proud to say that I have the unexpected fortune to own, care for, and drive a car that reasonably closely resembles the original masterpiece.

And equally proud to say Peter Brock is my friend!

Peter Brock: Thank You!


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