1968 Mustang Notchback -  Ray Wolff, Dick Guider, Ron Burns, Don Roberts, Bob Barker
later driven and owned by Jim Lange

©  Steve Francis, hosted by Wolfgang Kohrn - December 8th,  2018

 


Jim Lange explained his research vehicle in his own words in 2009-2011:

"My father purchased the car from Bob Barker (Nevada) in 1977 after seeing it in an ad in the Competition Press. My father had been racing his 1965 Shelby GT350 (SFM5022) in the southwest region SCCA and hillclimbs and at times was a volunteer corner worker for larger events. He had seen this car raced by several owners including Bob Barker as well as close friend Don Roberts. The purchase transaction occurred in December 1977 and the car picked up in Las Vegas in January of 1978 (bill of sale in my file).

From my notes:
-The car had been painted black just before purchase
-The car had Shelby over ride bars, R model wheels (stamped '65), Valley Head Service heads, Shelby R model valve covers, GT350 front suspension, Shelby hoop roll-over bar
-The front quarter panels were mildly flared, the rear more so
-The dash was set up just the same as the R Models that I've seen over the years with Stewart-Warner gauges, blue and red warning lights etc.

Bob Barker surrendered an SCCA logbook from 1975 but kept the rest. My Father believed that they were kept as memories/keepsakes. 
Some notes from the logbook:


-The car was campaigned during that year painted gold (was described as looking more bronze than Gold)
-Tech notes included comments "Le Mans style gas cap, must change before next race", Shelby roll over loop (original is stamped with log book number)

Miscellaneous note causing some confusion:
-The Shelby purchase order to Ford San Jose is for 5 units and is dated 5/16/1967 to the dealer "Shelby American"

-With the car came original FIA stamped certification of homologation (#5205) dated for the series of cars produced August-November 1967 for chassis 8F01J100001 which would or might indicate a car produced very late in 1967 for the 1968 model year

-The front clip and the rear clip are clearly from two different cars as evidence in the fact that there is a massive weld midway through the floor pan and roof (obviously cut in half). The front clip's Shelby VIN/Plate reads Z67401F8A02481 which according to the Marti Report started life as a 1967 Shelby Fastback

-In a letter written to my father on SAAC letterhead from Rick Kopec dated 1983 Rick states that there were only 11 known 67's ordered/build:
 6 ordered 1/10/1967, 3 1/16/1967 and 2 on 9/1/1967. Kopec acknowledges that he had not seen my father's purchase order for 5 dated 5/29/1967 and further stated "there is very little that we know about Shelby and this program".


Oral history throughout the cars history has been that it is a Shelby American raced prepared 1967 Notchback that was heavily crashed and sold off. In speaking with ex Shelby employees like Chuck Cantwell or Bernie Kretzschmar they stated that it is really hard to track down history with the Notchback's because they were cars coming off the assembly line, prepared for TransAm and raced to their deaths. Nobody really cared about those cars after the fact.

At the end of the day I am either attempting to restore a car that started life as a Shelby Notchback but was heavily damaged, rebuilt or recreated by fusing another Shelby clip to the front or simply an A Sedan that has been raced all of it's life but still the sum of 2 parts. 

I'm exploring the history the best that I can. 
Your good assistance is greatly appreciated."

Jim Lange



The center weld shows that 2 cars got together at some time, at least a blend with Shelby origins, as it looks like.

Any hint about the race appearances in the years 1967- early 1970ies is appreciated.


Ray Wolff 1968* Mustang Notchback

 “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts” (Aristotle). This race car is made up from two separate Mustangs. Front half 1967 Shelby GT500 and the back half a 1968 notchback. Two damaged blue Mustangs pieced together to live on as one race car.
*We name it a 1968 here due to the fact that the 1967 front clip was put o
bviously as a replacement of a damaged front end on the 1968 race built rear end.
 
1968 Riverside Ray Wolff

Owner History:

1968: Ray Wolff was general manager of Carrol Shelby’s Hi-Performance Motors Inc and the splicing of two Mustangs was done during this time. Once joined the notchback was painted Blue. Research is still ongoing about the possibilty of the back half being a race car before the splicing was done. Wolff was also a Trans Am competitor racing (along with Chuck Cantwell) two Orange #9 Mustang notchbacks during 1966-68.


1968 Riverside Ray Wolff

 Late 1968 to 1974:

Dick Guider purchased the Mustang from Ray Wolff in the Culver City/Venice California area in late 1968 and promptly sent the car to Earle Scheib for a color change from Blue to Orange. This was done to match the ex-Team Shelby ’67 T/A notchback that Guider had purchased from Wolff a couple weeks prior.
Guider raced the newly painted M&R Racing Enterprises Mustang in SCCA A/S as #9 (or a variation using the #9) twice at Phoenix, once at Continental Divide with a 1st place finish, once at Salt Lake City and also at Riverside Int'l Raceway. Put in storage at end of the 1969 season.

 

1974-75:

Ron Burns with Don Roberts as co-driver and mechanic. Color change from Orange to a Gold/Bronze color with Black Forest livery and raced as #22 with SCCA and ASRA.

 

1975:
Don Roberts. Not raced.

1975-78:
Robert “Bob” Barker
. Raced the Mustang for a couple years as #73 in the Gold/Bronze color and Black Forest livery before adding larger flares, a California Special rear deck lid and color change to Black. Barker added an additional scar to the floor pan near the old body splice when a driveshaft that came off during a race at Phoenix Int’l Raceway. Advertised for sale in Competition Press in 1977.


 
As a side note, Barker co-drove the 1967 Code Key Shelby Group 2 T/A notchback three times during 1968-69. Riverside, Kent and Laguna Seca.

Late 1978 to present:
Jim Lange Sr. Included was an SCCA log book from 1975, an earlier log book was kept by Barker. The Mustang had full glass, deluxe interior door panels, Lemans style fuel filler and FIA papers. Lange raced the Mustang in various ASRA events, hill climbs and the Eloy Grand Prix where after a shunt and repair the Mustang was changed from black to red with a black hood. Lange removed the original 4-point roll bar and installed a full roll cage during the 1990s just before retiring the car.

 



2017-2019:

Under restoration by Gordon Levy to 1968 T/A spec.

Side Notes:
While carefully sanding the layers of paint Jim Lange found the number 9 (both Wolff and Guiders number) and several variations using the number 9.

Fabrication and parts stand out as a Shelby American connection.
- Rear over-rider bars
- drilled rear drum brake backing plates,
- fuel pump bracket assy in trunk,
- fuel fill through trunk,
- dash gauge panel,
- 4-point bolt-in roll bar,
- rear track bar,
- flat washers tack welded to front top shock mounts,
- 5 spoke magnesium wheels stamped 5 67,
- HiPo 289 cylinder heads stamped “ported by Valley Head Ser, Canoga Park, Calif and topped off with Shelby R-model valve covers.
Oral histrory of the car has been that it's a Shelby prepared notchback that was heavily crashed and sold off.

Tracking the donor GT500 fastback front clip VIN shows the 5/12/67 built Shelby never made it to the dealer it was to be shipped to and no insurance claim was made.

Text by Steve Francis, December 2018

 

E-Mail
Back to 67/68 Notchback Mustangs overview
Back to Homepage