1964 Shelby Daytona Coupe – A Righteous Replica
The 1964 Shelby Daytona Coupe is a special car. Looking through the history of these rare racers, serial number CSX2299 is a particularly special example, so it’s no surprise that this is the car that Russ Foster looked to replicate in full.
As the bases for his recreation, Russ chose to build the car exactly as it appeared during the 1965 12 Hours of Sebring, complete down to the very last detail. This is the race where CSX2299 finished first in the GT III class (and fourth overall), piloted by Bob Bondurant and Jo Schlesser.
Much of the work has been done by Russ himself to get the 1964 Shelby Daytona Coupe where it is today, but he says he couldn’t have finished the car without a lot of help. And while from the outside the car perfectly matches its racing counterpart from fifty years ago, Russ did take a few liberties to allow him to cruise the car around in 2018.
The exterior features the correct ’65 Ford Guardsman Blue with Wimbledon White stripes along with aluminum Trigo replicas of the Halibrand magnesium pin-drive wheels used back in the day. You’ll also notice the windshield slats for fresh air double as vents which divert air to the brake ducts. All of the sponsor stickers have been sourced and placed exactly as they were on the car in 1965.
The heart of the machine is a Ford Performance Boss 302-based 331 stroker, complete with the always-popular B-303 cam and hydraulic roller lifters. Air is sucked in through four TWM 2-throat EFI throttle bodies which have the same footprint as the original carburetors the car used in the sixties.
Power from the stroker finds its way through a Tremec 3550 5-speed and then out back into a Ford 8.8 center section. Of course, the car makes use of independent rear suspension, which meant that Russ had to get creative.
Hub carriers from a Thunderbird Supercoupe were used, along with purpose-built control arms from the kit. Up front, things were a bit more straightforward. The double A-arms were included in the kit, so all that was needed was a set of coilovers for it to come together.
Russ received the replica kit in 2001 and has since been piecing the car together in his spare time. Fifteen years later the car was licensed on August 17th 2016. Since then it’s been polished up and finished off, although there still are a couple tweaks here and there that the car will still need before it hits the track.
We spotted him out with the car at the Shelby American Automotive Club’s 43rd annual national convention where Russ told us all of the drivability issues have been sorted and the Daytona is running great.
Taking in the details of the replica, it just goes to show what hard work and determination will bring to any project. With a bit of suspension tuning, breaking in, and safety checks we’re sure Russ will be out on the track in no time.