My first day on the Cape was also a day of celebration at Factory Five. So I drove back over the canal and stopped by their shop in Wareham, MA to see the show.
It was full of customers with their roadsters and coupes as well as the newest F5 kit, the mid-engined GTM.
While I am sure that this rankles Carol Shelby to no end the participants were really enjoying themselves. Lined up with their completed cars, trading stories and experiences, they were having a great time.
The variations of the roadsters is amazing. I complete the Factory Five build school back in 2005 and am still fascinated by the variety of ways that people can, and have, made their version very special and unique.
One guy had added some square bumps to his trunk lid because he had learned that when the team had showed up at LeMans to run they were confronted with a requirement that the trunk have a suitcase in it. The story goes that they put the standard suitcase in the trunk and slammed the lid a few times until the aluminum bent enough to fit, leaving the impressions of the corners of the suitcase in the trunk lid.
The GTM cars were spectacular to look over. So much ingenuity went into each build. Many builders used the Z06 suspensions and as a result they had to enlarge the fenders to accommodate the larger wheels and tires. They also added scoops to provide additional intake to the engine. They then added a scoop to the roof in order to gain additional cooling air in to the interior of the car.
Browsing the coupes, I met Willie Hough who not only brought his own coupe, but he manufactured the scoops and larger fenders for the GTM cars.
Willie, it turned out, knew John Harkness, and old friend of mine who used to own a shop in Marblehead, MA that I would used to balance and line bore engines for me. Willie told me how he first met John and how John got him involved in racing. They both worked on the TransAm team of Sam Posey in the 70’s. It’s always surprising how connected the racing community is.
There was a dyno at the show and owners were taking advantage of that to see just what kind of numbers their cars were putting out. It also meant that the crowd was treated to the roar of the big V8 engines as they strained to get the rollers spinning.
The event had a huge turnout and it was fun to see all the enthusiastic owners and admirers. It was a hot day and along toward mid-day I jumped back into my Evo and headed back to the Cape where I will spend the next couple of weeks.