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Carroll Shelby was born on January 11, 1923 in Leesburg, Texas, USA as Carroll Hall Shelby. He is known for his work on Flying the Feathered Edge: The Bob Hoover Project(2014), AutoRox Awards (2005) and Drive (2005). He was married to Cleo, Jan Harrison, Jeanne Fields and ‘Jan Harrison. He died on May 10, 2012 in Dallas, Texas.
Racecar driver on the Grand Prix circuit.
Had a heart transplant in 1990 and after seeing 2 children die because they didn’t get needed organs, formed a charity which helps get needed organs for children.
Developer of the Ford Mustang Shelby and Cobra.
He partnered with Lee A. Iacoccca of Ford in 1964 to create a high performance Mustang version for racing. In January 1965, the first Shelby Mustang made it’s debut.
In 1959, he was the second American born driver to win the 24 hours of Le Mans in France. A heart ailment forced him to quit driving professionally in 1962. He founded Shelby American in 1962 where he built his Cobra cars.
He had homes in the Bel Air hills of Los Angeles, California; in Las Vegas, Nevada; and owned a ranch in Pittsburg, Texas where he raised miniature horses and African cattle while designing cars in his later years. He owned small vintage planes and numerous cars including his original Cobra.
He is survived by his wife, Cleo; his children, Patrick Shelby, Michael Shelby, and Sharon Shelby; and a sister Anne Shelby Ellison.
In 2003, he teamed with Ford in a partnership that included a new Mustang design. He went to the New York Auto Show at the Jacob Javits Center in 2007 to introduce the Ford GT500KR.
He had a heart transplant in 1990. In 1991, he founded the Carroll Shelby Children’s Foundation which financed organ transplants for children and expanded to provide educational assistance for young people.
He founded a wheel company and an automobile club. He returned to sports car design in 1982. When Lee Iacocca was Chairman of Chrysler, he was signed and they designed special edition performance models of the Dodge Charger and other cars.
He marketed a chili mix in 1969 and spent time in Africa in the 1970s hunting big game and organizing expeditions.
The Shelby-American team’s Ford GT40 won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1966 and 1967. They defeated the Ferrari’s winning streak. He teamed with Roy Salvadori of Britain to win in their Aston Martin.
He drove for the Aston Martin team in 1954 at the race in Sebring, Florida. In November 1957, he won the 100 mile race at Riverside, California in a one seat Maserati.
He entered his first auto race in 1952, driving in a quarter mile drag meet, then won road races in the Southwest. He wore striped bib coveralls because he didn’t have time to change. It became his signature outfit.
Son of Warren Shelby, a rural mail carrier, and car enthusiast. He made his rounds in a 1928 Whippet. He served as a flight instructor in the United States Army Air Forces during World War II. He then worked in the Texas oil fields and became a chicken farmer.
Inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame in 1992.