LMC is very proud to offer for sale this 1964 Shelby Cobra 289 Independent Competition Car
The Shelby Registry has historically made a distinction between official Shelby prepared racers and Cobras campaigned in competition by privateer owners, referring to the latter as Independent Competition Cobras. As advancements became available, earlier cars were frequently upgraded by privateers or the factory to meet the demands of the race track and the stiff competition. Under private ownership, this 1964 Shelby Cobra 289 was used to help win the SCCA B/Production championship in 1966 as well as many other races in that period.
The car offered here was billed to Shelby American on 7/16/63 and shipped to Los Angeles on 7/22. Its original owner Tex Asche ordered it in Princess Blue with a Red interior. Before being modified for racing purposes, this new 289 Cobra appeared in a Lark cigarette commercial at the 1963 12hrs of Sebring. From 1963-65 it competed in SCCA races under Tex Asche’s ownership with Bob Thorpe at the wheel taking home both 1st and 2nd place finishes.
At this point it had become a full-fledged competition car and was given a unique set of 5-spoke American wheels with spline drive Rudge hubs. Additional changes included rounded front and rear flares, Koni shocks, an oil cooler, hood scoop, wind screen and driver’s roll bar. During this time it was also repainted from Princess Blue to Guardsmen Blue. A large oval opening was cut into the sheet metal below the standard grill to provide additional cooling.
In 1966 it was sold to Richard Coates and under his ownership the car competed in SCCA events in the southeast, again driven by Bob Thorpe (Pompano Beach, FL) with Jim Etter serving as a crew chief. The car’s original 289 was soon replaced with a Weber-Carbureted race version from Shelby American. Etter recalled the car winning many races around the southeast as well as winning the SCCA B/Production crown in the SE division in 1966. After winning the championship, Mr. Coates would retire the Cobra from racing duty and use it for a few years on the street.
Mr. Coates would own this Cobra for over 40 years until it was sold to us here at Legendary Motorcar. Upon arrival, the team here at LMC was extremely pleased with the originality and condition of this Cobra. From there we did a complete restoration to return this special example back to its former racing glory. Since the restoration was completed, it has seen zero miles of road use and has been always stored in a climate-controlled facility.
This special Cobra is listed in the Shelby Registry as well as being accompanied by a dossier of spectacular period photographs. Today this example remains as one of the most original independent 289 competition Cobras and is also one of the best-looking liveries on any competition Cobra.