It’s the first-ever competition Shelby Mustang. The GT350R Competition model known as the Flying Mustang thanks to an iconic photo of Ken Miles behind the wheel of the car driving it to victory at its first race in 1965 with all four wheels in the air.
The car, badged as 5R002 was used by Shelby American as a factory racer and a test bed for new race car ideas, driven by Ken Miles, Chuck Cantwell, Pete Brock and Jerry Titus. It saw more than 10 class wins in the 1965 SCCA racing season.
This car is the only one built to this spec since it was the one that lead to the improvements seen on other cars. Those ideas would become the second team car, 5R002, and all 34 customer R-models. The listing for the car, which will be sold at Mecum’s Indianapolis auction this May, says that Carroll Shelby claimed the car had dome more than 50,000 miles of testing. It was also used to convince other prospective R-model buyers to take the plunge.
The car was sold in 1966 for $4,000 as a test car to a Ford Performance engineer in Dearborn. all of the original documentation was kept with the car, and showing some of the later modifications the car received including a GT40 experimental V8 engine.
The new buyer raced the car in 1966 and 1967, selling it in 1968 to a pair of Texans who ran the car for a few years in that state. In 1970, 5R002 moved to Mexico and continued to see racing wins in that country, but was then parked. It sat in a yard near Monterrey until 1989.
In 2010, after years on display in “as found” condition, the car was restored, with the new owner spending four years and countless hours on the work. It finished the restoration in as-raced configuration from February 1965.
It’s one of the cars that made the Mustang a successful racing car and helped bring the GT350 to the road. As such, this Ken Miles Flying Mustang could be one of the most significant pony cars of all time.