Memorable Cruises: 2012 Shelby Tribute Cruise Los Angeles
With the recent passing of the Legend Carroll Shelby, volumes have already been written memorializing his legacy in racing and manufacturing. So look elsewhere for history. This piece is about personal memories. And while the man has passed, memories surrounding his legacy will continue to be built.
For instance, for the thousands who took part in the Rev Your Engines Event around the world on May 30th, 2012, that memory will last a lifetime.
Along those lines, an impromptu meet and cruise was organized in the LA area on Saturday, May 26th by Team Shelby member Dennis Washburn. For those that attended, it was a wonderful memory and a great way to pay tribute to Carroll Shelby and the cars he designed and loved.
The Cruise started with a meeting at the Original Mooneyes Shop in Santa Fe Springs, California. In case you didn’t know, the Mooneyes Shop was where the very first Shelby Cobra was born. In fact, many of us took the opportunity to pull our own Shelby into the “birthing bay” and have our baby’s picture taken. It was a really cool feeling. During the first week of February 1962, the shop was used to install the Ford 260 V8, mated with a TA 4-Speed transmission into an AC Ace body. Did that sound like history? Anyway, after the successful Frankenstein operation, the streets of Santa Fe Springs were used for speed trials.
After some socializing and drooling over each other’s rides, we mounted up and headed to the famous Princeton location at 1042 Princeton Drive in Venice, California where Carroll Shelby produced Cobras in the 1960s. In fact, from August 1st, 1962 to the end of the year, 75 Cobras were built with the 260 V8s. Only 6 Daytona Coupes were built at this location, including one survivor prototype. Many 289 Cobras were also built here. And before moving the operation to a hanger at the Los Angeles International Airport, a few dozen GT350s were also produced at the Princeton location.
Sadly, this building will be torn down in the near future to make room for something worthless, like condos. So if you want to see it before it is gone, you better mount up and head on over there.
While most of the crew parted after the Princeton stop, Dennis and I ventured over to our final stop – Hooters in West Covina…for the hot wings. Rene Rizo and his GT500 “Venom” met us there. Making new friends over a cold beer was a perfect end to a great cruise day.
Thank you Carroll Shelby, for sharing your passion with the world and touching people with the greatness you carried with you through your life.