It’s not often you get to see the real deal up close and personal—something really special in the world of automobile performance or race-inspired musclecars. So few are these instances that we actually become somewhat numb to the possibility of seeing one, and when we do we can easily overlook it or immediately pass it off as a “tribute,” “clone,” or “retake” on a classic, rare piece.
For example, Donnie Green’s 1968 Ford Shelby GT500KR was sitting less than 25 feet away from us for over six hours before we actually realized what it was. Yeah, we’re a bit embarrassed—but to make ourselves feel a little better, we keep telling ourselves that the place we were in was full of incredible cars, and maybe we just hadn’t gotten to Donnie’s yet. When we did see it, in order to authenticate the find we proceeded to get a closer look when we were assured by the owner that, “this one is the real deal”, and yes it is!
Now is where the story gets really interesting. Imagine buying your 1968 Shelby GT500KR brand new off the dealer’s lot, then selling it, only to buy it back over 30 years later.
“My Shelby was bought on October 28, 1968 from Kimnack Ford in Norfolk, Virginia when I was only 19 years old. The sticker price was $4,950.00
and I kept the car for nine years before selling her,” Green explained.
He admits that he drove the Shelby “…the way it was meant to be driven.” After all, he was in his twenties the entire time he owned it and was behind the wheel of one of the most popular and powerful cars of the time.
“After getting married, we needed an air conditioner and TV, so I sold my Shelby to a friend,” continued Donnie. “He only lived about four miles away, here in Gloucester, and actually only drove the car a few months before he decided to restore it. He started taking her apart and began by removing the engine and most
of the interior before he lost interest. After this, he put the car on jack stands in a garage where it remained for 33 years, untouched.”
The Shelby was not in the best of condition after its lengthy hiatus and Donnie jokes about the car’s state of disassembly when he went to pick it up.
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