©Photography by Ron & Toni Avery
As many of you know, I am a huge Ford GT40 fanatic. I have models of each generation and my website logo even incorporates a Gulf themed GT40. When I received the e-mail from Pebble Beach announcing a very special talk including almost all the original GT40 drivers from the 1960s, I jumped at the chance to be there.
I arrived to a packed house where everyone awaited the arrivals of Jacky Ickx, Bob Bondurant, Dan Gurney, David Hobbs, and Brian Redman. The panel was moderated by Ken Gross, an automotive writer for over four decades.
For the next hour, each driver told stories of their times in and with the GT40. There were of course those famous Carroll Shelby stories but also some fun personal stories of the drivers off the track. Dan Gurney, Bob Bondurant and Brian Redman were among the most enthusiastic storytellers with such great animation that the entire audience would laugh along with each story. At the very end, Gurney relayed just how much those days meant to him and while you had to be there, the entire audience got emotional. He was Car and Driver’s and car crazy America’s choice for President after all.
Sitting there listening to these iconic racers was a thrill in itself. After the talk ended, each of the drivers were kind enough to sign my Pebble Beach credential, which coincidentally featured a painting of three GT40s.