Notes: A memoir of the automotive designer Carroll Shelby's effort to make an American car compete with Ferrari in racing, written before his work with Ford led to an historic 1-2-3 finish at Le Mans in 1966.
Shelby neatly summarized his goal as a designer of high-performance cars: "I think we can break the monopoly of the red Ferrari on the roads and tracks of the world. I want to produce the fastest son-of-a-gun I can for the least money—that's the American style, and I don't think any country in the world can stop us now." The recent film Ford v. Ferrari dramatized how Shelby, working with the driver Ken Miles, designed, tested, and built the Ford GT40 and took it to victory at Le Mans.
This book was expanded and retitled the Carroll Shelby story after the Le Mans victory.
Edition + Condition: First edition (first printing, with no later printings noted). Other than a short tear to the cloth at the base of the spine, a fine copy in a very good dust jacket, chipped at the top of the spine and showing a few edge tears.
This copy is inscribed by Shelby, in his usual style, "Your racing friend, Carroll Shelby" and dated December 5, 1965. Someone, probably Shelby's secretary, added "To Bob Mollman" after Shelby inscribed the book. (Shelby was a busy entrepreneur, not an author—he may have signed a stack of books and then handed them off to his secretary to address and mail).
Mollman was a long-distance rally-car racer who drove for the Chrysler team in the Canadian Winter Rallies in the early 1960s. The Cobra Story, according to newspaper reviews, was published in November 1965, meaning this was among the first copies Shelby signed. Signed copies of The Cobra Story are uncommon and copies presented to other racing professionals are even scarcer.
Publication: New York: Trident Press, 1965.
Item No: #308199