Factory Boss 302 9F02R112073 in Trans Am Racing
© Sam Colman, David Bauer, Wolfgang Kohrn - May, 24th, 2003, last updated July, 2017

+++Previously unpublished pictures - thanks to Sam Colman of the genuine Dark Horse Racing Team+++


With this car our 69/70Trans Am site started. 
David M. Bauer relayed me treasures out of Sam Colmans photobox. Sam was a member of the Dark Horse Racing Team back in 71/72, working on the engine heads.

Since the debut of this site a lot more has been compiled and added to each of the history's cars. We'd like to thank especially
  • Steve Francis, who worked on several T/A cars including Smokey Yunicks semi T/A car
  • Peter Marcovicci, then race team chief of the Dark Horse Racing Team
  • Randy Gillis of JE Pistons, who worked (March 2002) on the restoration of #073
  • Scott Couchman (author of the June 2000 Mustang Monthly article - interview with PJ and GF)
  • Ed Ludtke from the Mustang Racing registry
  • and Brian Ferrin, Mike Sedlak, Don Hodges, Gus Tarrab plus many others that will be named as well as soon as my memory is back, which will probably not happen...






Official Ford press picture of 9F02R112073 sent out with press note on April 29th, 1969
This picture was taken at the testing day at Michigan Int. Speedway (MIS) 1969
Archive Walt Hane

First Shelby Team car, but wearing this time door number 2 at Bridgehampton (DNF)

The History of 9F02R112073  
This is the first ever factory Trans Am Boss 302 Mustang that was prepared by Kar Kraft. A picture of it as delivered by Kar Kraft can be seen in Dr. John Craft book.
Only 3 of the factory Trans Am Boss got full treatment (recent information reveals only this one), while others were finished in the hands of the individual race teams. Not to forget those Bodies in White, of which some were transformed into T/A racers at a later date.

Don't get fooled by the #1 / #2 door number game. Along with several crashes of  these cars, the numbers got changed acc. to the drivers participation in races. 

David M. Bauer speaks up:
"My friend Sam Colman worked in the Dark Horse Racing Team, that raced the first Shelby Team car (9F02R112073) during the 71/72 season. John Gimbel was the driver then. The Shelby team car was originally painted for the 1969 season dark blue and carried #2 on the door during a number of races.. In 1971 it carried #57 and in 1972 #3.

Main Team Shelby car in 1969
It was one of the dark corporate blue cars. Peter Revson & Horst Kwech were the regular drivers. The 9F02R112073 car was first run at Bryar, July 20, 1969. It was driven by Horst Kwech as #2. Reportedly Horst Kwech hated the cars set up and preferred #029. #073 has a slightly bigger roll bar diameter than the others.

Dan Gurney did drive the blue 1969 Team Shelby Boss' for two races. He drove 9F02R112073  in 1969 at Laguna and Kent. It sat under a car cover at Sears.

It was run at the next race on August 3, 1969 at St. Jovite and wrecked (also driven by Horst Kwech as #2). The 9F02R112073 car was in fact one of the three Factory Boss cars wrecked at the 1969 St. Jovite race, when George Follmer driving the Bud Moore Boss broke a valve spring while leading the race, causing the valve to hole the piston. Oil poured onto the track causing him to spin in his own oil. He hit nothing and parked the car on the side of the track.

He jumped the wall in time for the blue #1, Peter Revson (9F02M148629), Shelby Team Mustang and the blue #2, Horst Kwech (9F02R112073), Shelby team Mustang to come around the turn, hit the oil and slam the Follmer #16 car (9F02R112074). As George Follmer tells the story, the corner worker only put out a yellow flag for the car on the side of the track and did not flag for the oil.
At San Jovite the roof was ruined while was picked up off of the car it was sitting on.

After the 1969 season, Ford gave the corporate blue Mustangs to Bud Moore apparently, when Shelby quit the deal and Ford cut down its expenses.

It seems that 9F02R112073 had been left to sit at Bud Moore's for the 1970 season (may have been a backup car) before it was updated with 1970 sheet metal and sold to John Gimbel and Dark Horse Racing who raced it for the 1971 season as #57. It was painted black with blue stripes and a white tail light panel. In the 1972 season, it was raced as #3 and was painted black with red stripes and a white tail light panel.

The car in 1971

The crew chief for the 1971 & 1972 seasons was Peter Marcovicci of MARCOVICCI-WENZ vintage racing engines fame. It was sold to Daher Racing in Mexico, then bought in 1978 by Danny Moore and raced as a 1970 Boss 302. He drove it in 1979 to the national championship.
Ed Recknagel bought it after that (a friend of Jerry Crew and Danny Moore). Richard Morrow, the ex-chief mechanic was re-hired and it was restored in Oklahoma, then raced and repaired very often.

The car was wrecked again in 1972 when oil on the track caused driver John Gimbel to spin and back into the woods at Sanair International Raceway. The car was repaired on Long Island, N.Y. and returned to racing at the next race. The car has early features not found on some of the other cars and has a unique roll cage.

Dark Horse Racing Team in 1972

The car during Phil Gallant's ownership of San Diego, CA.
Randy Gillis of JE Pistons worked on the 073 car and says that it is being brought back to 1969 specs. He tried to locate that double Holley dominator intake setup for the car. He was also looking for pictures of the interior. It seems that others, along the way, added to the roll cage. He also picked up something from the pictures that I had  and having the car there also helps. The passenger's side door has a lock cylinder and did back in the Dark Horse days too. 

If you look at the rest of the cars (except for one of George Follmer's cars in 1969), all have no lock cylinders. In all the vintage pictures I have seen, only the one #16 car and Horst Kwech's #2 have passenger door lock cylinders. I believe (looking at the pictures) this is a result of the St. Jovite crash. Randy says the car has one "lightweight" sheet metal door and one stock Ford door. (quotes David Baur)

Follow this link for more pics of 9F02R112073 from 1972 until today

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