Cobra Prototype

Riverside, March 3-4, 1962:   One of the first public appearances of Carroll Shelby's Cobra.  The car ran demo laps between races.  This begins one of the greatest eras in racing, well covered elsewhere.

Is that Carroll Shelby behind the wheel?  Some say yes, others say no.

Comments? Please email me!

Does anyone know who the passenger might be?

(Peter Brock, designer of the Cobra Daytona coupe, identified her as Joan Cole, Shelby's secretary.)

(2-27-11)   From Jim Cordero:

"Driver in Photo #1 is not Carroll Shelby.  Not his face or his hair style / color in this period.  Photo #2 is Shelby and I believe Carroll's passenger is John Christy, the then editor of "Sports Car Graphic" magazine.

Another look at the first Cobra on March 3-4, 1962.

Can anyone identify the driver & passenger?

Charlie Vehle identified the passenger in this photo as:  "Alan Fordney,  the race announcer.  He was also in the movie "Grand Prix" playing the part of an announcer, of course."

Ken Miles at Riverside -- Feb. 3-4, 1963.

Miles and Cobra teammate Dave MacDonald left the Corvette Stingrays in the dust at this event.  Making the other drivers long for the day when the Cobra would retire, donate car, engine and all to a museum and give them a chance to win a race. 

MacDonald won easily, while Miles stopped at the pits to let all the Stingrays go by, then returned to the course and repassed them all. 

Prints of these Cobra photos and other photos on this website are available for sale!  See this page!
Ron Cummings remembers this race:

"After jumping into an early lead, Miles pitted for no reason. He 
let the entire field go by before re-entering the race.  The crowd was jumping up and down as he stunned the Chevrolet drivers by easily passing the entire field to finish second behind MacDonald's other team Cobra.  The Corvette people were completely demoralized."

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All photographs and text are the property of Tam McPartland and are protected under United States and international copyright laws.  All rights are reserved and the images and/or text may not be digitized, reproduced, stored, manipulated, and/or incorporated into other works without the written permission of the photographer, Tam McPartland.