Sold on a Bill of Sale only The lasting success and notoriety of Ford's Total Performance program of the 1960s can be credited not just to the Ford Motor Company proper, but to numerous favored suppliers and trusted collaborators. The most famous of these was, of course, Carroll Shelby, but no less important was the Dearborn Steel Tubing Company. DST started as a manufacturer of dual exhaust and other tuning parts for V8 Fords, with the quality of their work eventually earning the role as Ford's supplier for numerous performance features in the company's police cruisers. Over the years, the relationship evolved as DST's capabilities did, and during the 1960s the company would become Ford's favored builder of show cars, including both the Mustang I and II, the "shorty" Mustang III, and the Thunderbird Italien as well as the famed lightweight Thunderbolt drag racers. DST may not have been formally part of FoMoCo, but they served as a sort of fabricating skunkworks that contributed mightily to the Blue Oval's success in the 1960s. Ford executives valued this special relationship, and thus when Jim "Hammer" Mason, the aftermarket performance products manager at DST, decided to go racing himself, they sent him the Galaxie 500 offered here. Three years earlier this "1963½" Galaxie had been one of the very early, essentially hand-built "pilot line" vehicles, used to test assembly line processes before the start of full production of this new style. It was then professionally photographed and became the car featured in Ford sales brochures for the model. As a pilot car, it was not given a serial number. Mason was determined that his Galaxie would become famous outside of a showroom display rack. He built it into a fearsome competitor and naturally, as someone with his connections, he did not need to work under a shade tree. In building the racer he collaborated directly with Donnell "Pop" Sullivan, one of Ford's chief engineers going back to the days of the V-8's development. Mason's own engineering skills, later proven in his building of engines for racing, were considerable. Among the owner's contributions to this car was a "batwing" air cleaner that, in testing, accepted air that gathered and compressed at the car's cowl, essentially supercharging induction, and gave every car that used it another 3½ mph at Daytona International Speedway, just from the air cleaner alone! It worked so well that NASCAR eventually outlawed it. Reflecting DST's knowledge of what made a car stand out on show stands, the body was finished in an unforgettable red, white, and blue livery, with the roof in a special blue metalflake that shone just right when the car was at an angle on the Daytona banking. Mason entered his Galaxie four times in the Modified/Sportsman races at Daytona, known for their wild-and-woolly nature created by the combination of slightly older equipment, numerous privateer drivers, and a sizable purse that ensured both machine and man drove at their limits. Major sponsorship came from Kosin's Auto Parts of Inkster, Michigan, whose numerous contributions to the car were likely reflected in its amusing original livery as the "Blanket Order Special." Reflecting the owner's continued masterful use of his contacts within the industry later sponsors included Buddy Bar Casting, the company whose name appears on so many engine components of Carroll Shelby's Cobras. Mason's driver was Bill France Sr's great friend Curtis Turner, the colorful and hard-partying Southerner who co-owned the Charlotte Motor Speedway (and the liquor still underneath it, but that is another story). Turner blew past everyone on the 10th lap and piloted the #87 car to 1st Overall victory in the Daytona-Permatex 300 of 1966; he received the prize winnings and promptly left town, leaving Mason to take out a loan to pay his crew's way home. Nonetheless, the following year Turner, having proven his mettle, again returned with Mason's car, holding 3rd for most of the event before finishing 8th Overall. Sponsorship for this run was provided by Lester Castings, the firm of renowned engineer and enthusiast Tom Lester, which produced the castings for all of Ford's automatic transmissions in this era. In 1968 the reins to Mason's Galaxie were handed over to the great Bobby Allison, who, in the Sportsman division, achieved a podium finish with 3rd Overall. The following year, Donnie Allison took over, finishing 7th. After these four races, all with highly talented drivers and all in the Daytona Permatex 300, Mason simply took the Galaxie home and put it in his garage - and that was that. The quiet, almost unceremonious retirement had the unforeseen bonus that the Galaxie would survive the ensuing years without constant modification to keep it competitive, but instead would remain what it is today, an utterly remarkable untouched survivor of 1960s American stock car racing. It is not only in its original paint but still has its original interior, down to the racing seat, Stewart-Warner gauges, seatbelts, asbestos flooring, and the tape on the steering wheel. Even the steel wheels are shod in the set of racing tires from Donnie Allison's run. Hammer Mason's infamous batwing air cleaner is still equipped on the 427 "side oiler" with its dual four-barrel racing carburetors under the hood. Additional equipment includes a NASCAR floating axle 9-inch rear end and fuel cell. The car has raced only four times in its life - those four Permatex 300s, all at Daytona, three of them with a pair of NASCAR Hall of Fame drivers. Undoubtedly, their fingerprints are still on it. Such is this car's continued fame that, in its original 1966 "Blanket Order Special" livery, the Galaxie was the basis of a Racing Collectables Legend Series model, released in 1991. The car was shown at the Ford Racing Centennial celebration in 2001, and in that same era appeared in a Ford Motorcraft television commercial in which it was driven by Ford's first NASCAR champion Ned Jarrett; in addition, it was photographed with Edsel Ford II. It is even complete with the original pit crew signs for Turner and Donnie Allison's efforts. It seems a shame, however, for this stock car beast to remain a museum piece. Even parked, the Galaxie radiates an inner yearning to run again, and "see what she can do," in the best tradition of the men who built her, drove her, and won in her, back in a time when the crowds were wild, the drivers wilder, and Ford and Dearborn Steel Tubing defined Total Performance for a generation. Please note that a historic photo file is available for viewing

  • Fuel
  • Body Types
  • Transmission
  • Exterior Colour
  • Number of doors
  • Interior Colour

Contact Us