RACING PEDIGREE
Hot Rod|January 2021
John McClintock’s simple, but effective 1967 Mustang was built to compete in vintage Trans Am racing.
Eric English
Don’t be fooled by its understated appearance, John McClintock’s 1967 Mustang Coupe is a purpose-built race car. To give perspective to John’s build, it’s important to understand that in 1966 and 1967, Shelby American built a handful of Mustang coupes to compete in the SCCA’s fledgling A-Sedan (amateur)and Trans Am (professional) classes. Shelby’s GT350 wasn’t legal to race in either class since it was homologated as a two-seater for B-Production, so the Group II coupes were essentially built to GT350 R-model spec and met the rules of the day. For 1967, 25 coupes were built, according to the Shelby American Automobile Club, with four used as team cars and the rest being sold to privateers. Shelby team cars were key to Ford winning the Trans Am title that year, helping to cement the Mustang coupe as a body style with plenty of competition chops. John’s Mustang was built as an homage to these illustrious cars that are largely unknown outside of Shelby and road-racing circles.

John began construction of the Mustang in 2014 doing the bulk of the work in his modest shop, farming out just the paint, engine build, and extensive rollcage. The end result is as good as it is because John is no stranger to wrenching on vintage roadrace Mustangs, having competed in the historic Trans Am circuit from 1995 to 2008 in two different 1969 Mustang Boss 302s. For a few years prior to that, he raced an early Shelby GT350 in various big-bore grids around the West Coast, as well. Back then John was his own pit crew and mechanic and honed the skills that eventually led to building the car you see here.

After six years away, John felt the urge to race again, and this car is the result. Though his current Mustang doesn’t have vintage history, John built it to legally run in some of the vintage groups that don’t require provenance. He methodically followed the Trans Am formula for success established 50-plus years ago—a formula which, considering its appeal today, seems like it was way ahead of its time.

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