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Moderator/Admin Dude!
2020 CFTP Red! 2011 Kona Blue
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Congratulations to @Big Shawn for being FordGT500’s February 2022 ROTM! Here is his story and his gorgeous 2021 track machine:

Let me start by saying, thank you. I never thought my car would be selected for “Ride of the Month”. My car is by no means a show car. It is a track car that does a lot of high-speed cruising.

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I grew up in a small mountain town in Oregon. I saw my first ‘67 GT500 as a young kid and at that moment I wanted one. When all my friends were bragging about Lamborghinis and Ferraris, I was talking about that ‘67 GT500! I knew that one day I would have one but not sure how long it would take. In high school, all my buddies owned trucks, so I followed suit. It came in handy hauling trailers and dirt bikes. We were always back roading, seeing who could hit the biggest mud holes and make it out the other side. It was the typical country boy life. We all took as many automotive and welding classes as they would allow. Back then, we thought we were getting over by taking all those “easy” electives. Looking back, it was a smart move. The day my junior year was over my family was headed to Montana in a U-Haul. It sucked leaving all my friends but as I would soon find out, Montana would be a great experience and a place I will love forever.

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This is where I learned to drive high horsepower cars. I still owned a four-wheel drive truck and did a lot of off roading but met a group of high horsepower friends that I would cruise around with. There was a ‘70 nova SS, a ‘77 split bumper Camaro, a ‘69 fastback, a couple tri-fives, a couple ‘69 Camaro SS and some Chevy short-wide pickups. All were at or over 350hp. For the younger guys on here, 350hp used to be a lot lol. The Nova was the first 400whp car that I had driven at that point. A real driver’s car. No electronics, power steering or power brakes. It was just as much fun as it was downright scary to drive. The second I took off I was hooked. My head being whipped back causing a death grip on the steering wheel. The feel of my chest caving in and the seat swallowing me was addicting. We used to race 1/4 mile on the frontage roads until the cops would flash their lights at us then we would scatter. At that time in the state of Montana there was no speed limit on the highways or interstates so we would head out of town afterwards. We used to race from Bozeman to Livingston over the pass. It was fun to pull up next to a state trooper doing 80mph and gun it only to find out the trooper was doing the same. They usually got off the gas at about 100 as we just continued. I’m sure they got just as much of a kick out of it as we did. When you did get pulled over the five dollar speeding tickets were pretty easy on the wallet.

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Upon graduating high school, I went straight into the military. After basic training I was station in Baumholder, Germany. We had a lot of fun driving on the Autobahn but never spent much time in the left-hand lane. Merely getting passed by those high-end super cars was exciting. Most of my teens and into my mid-twenties were spent cowboying so I never had any time or money for a sports car. Horses, tack and hay are quite expensive. Even while in the military I spent my nights and weekends working on ranches or at rodeos.

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After getting out of the military I moved to Texas where I met my wife. We had two kids and I worked on oil rigs. All this time the GT500 of my childhood was lurking in my head. Then came 2007. The reemergence of the Shelby GT500! I would look at one here and there wondering if the time was right. After looking at finances we would always decide it wasn’t the right time.

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Fast forward 14 years. I had been looking around for a couple months to find a new GT500 with little to no ADMs. I called a small dealership in West Texas who told me they were selling a 2021 GT500 for MSRP. I bought it sight unseen. It was black with painted on white stripes. That night I could hardly contain myself as you can guess I got very little sleep. The next day my buddy and I drove to pick it up. Let me just say it was well worth the wait! I fell in love with the car the 1st mile I put on it. A couple weeks later I sent it off for PPF. That was an absolute disaster. I ended up selling that car just because the owner at Southwest auto shield could not get the PPF correct.

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Now to my current car. It is a 2021 base model with the handling package and technology package. It is Oxford White with stripe delete. I had the car ceramic coated but not PPF’d due to my previous experience. After tinting the window at 20% we decided to black out all the lights and reflectors. I love the way it pops against the white. I have added American racing long tube headers, 2.85 grip tech pulley, ID1050x injectors, JLT CAI, resonator delete and Lund tune. The car now makes 852whp on E85 which I don’t run very often. It is right at home on 93 pump gas making 791whp. I love driving this car on the track. There are very few cars on the track that can keep up with the new GT500 at an amateur level. My son and I installed a set of Schroth harnesses and a Raceseng tow hook just in case lol. When we head to the track, I have some sport cup 2s on another set of base model wheels. I have had the track alignment completed and plan on installing a Sparco Evo driver’s seat along with switching over to high temp brake fluid and 75/140 diff fluid in the next couple of weeks. Like I said at the beginning, this is a track car not a show car. Please enjoy the story and car, rock chips and all.

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#1 Mike!
2019 Shelby GT350
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9,666 Posts
Welcome to the ROTM club! Your story is similar to many others on the forum who grew up longing for the means to possess a GT500 or GT350 Shelby! (see my ROTM= 02/2016). It sometimes takes a long time! Glad you are "driving" your GT500 as Mr. Shelby asked the owners to do! You are creating memories and acquired skills that cannot be duplicated with a garage queen. I'm glad your track partner, Tim, has jumped on board in that respect! Keep enjoying the new car and know that you're building a treasure trove of great experiences that you can enjoy and share with others who also want to live the dream!
 

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2021 GT500-2.85 griptech pulley/long tube headers/JLT Intake/1050x Injectors
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363 Posts
congrats Big Shawn! And awesome pics too 😎
Thank you, my wife took them. My favorite is the Ed “big daddy” Roth ratfink picture.
 

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2021 GT500-2.85 griptech pulley/long tube headers/JLT Intake/1050x Injectors
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363 Posts
Welcome to the ROTM club! Your story is similar to many others on the forum who grew up longing for the means to possess a GT500 or GT350 Shelby! (see my ROTM= 02/2016). It sometimes takes a long time! Glad you are "driving" your GT500 as Mr. Shelby asked the owners to do! You are creating memories and acquired skills that cannot be duplicated with a garage queen. I'm glad your track partner, Tim, has jumped on board in that respect! Keep enjoying the new car and know that you're building a treasure trove of great experiences that you can enjoy and share with others who also want to live the dream!
Thank you Mark. It took a lot of patience but I now own my (not the banks) dream car and I love it.
 

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Premium Member
2010 Shelby GT500 Kona Blue/Silver stripes
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Congrats Shawn. I too like the white and black theme. Mike is right about how many of us ran the same path of prioritizing family and life for so many years until we came out the other side of those commitments. To me, it shows a person making good decisions. Well done sir.
 

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2021 GT500-2.85 griptech pulley/long tube headers/JLT Intake/1050x Injectors
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363 Posts
Congrats Shawn. I too like the white and black theme. Mike is right about how many of us ran the same path of prioritizing family and life for so many years until we came out the other side of those commitments. To me, it shows a person making good decisions. Well done sir.
Thanks Mike, It’s funny how much we put off to give our kids a better life than we had. Now we get to have our own fun lol.
 

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2021 GT500-2.85 griptech pulley/long tube headers/JLT Intake/1050x Injectors
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363 Posts
Congrats Big Shawn, love the cowtown pics hope to see you on the track this year
For sure, and thank you. We are already signed up for ECR on 2/19 and MSR on 3/14. You should join us
 

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Super Moderator
2021 GT500 Iconic Silver
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6,056 Posts
Absolutely loved your story, Shawn. Awesome, man, awesome. And your GT500 looks killer -- I've always loved the contrast of black and white.

If you don't mind, I'd like to hit you up w/ a DM and learn more about your harness setup. I have a base model as well w/ base seats and have been contemplating some sort of harness setup.
 

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2021 GT500-2.85 griptech pulley/long tube headers/JLT Intake/1050x Injectors
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363 Posts
Absolutely loved your story, Shawn. Awesome, man, awesome. And your GT500 looks killer -- I've always loved the contrast of black and white.

If you don't mind, I'd like to hit you up w/ a DM and learn more about your harness setup. I have a base model as well w/ base seats and have been contemplating some sort of harness setup.
Sure thing Kris
 
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