The builder of the official continuation 1965 Ford Shelby G.T. 350 Competition cars, The Original Venice Crew (OVC), has issued a challenge in the name of charity to Jaguar and Aston Martin.
At a recent press event, OVC CEO Jim Marietta reignited the decades-old rivalry between the Ford, Jaguar and Aston Martin brands, which curiously enough were all a part of the same company at one time. The challenge? To put their classic heritage cars against the OVC Shelby continuation model.
OVC Shelby GT350 | Photography by Nicole Ellan James
The proposed battle of the marques would take place at Willow Springs Raceway in Southern California. With professional drivers designated by the teams the three cars would compete for ten laps, winner takes all.
OVC CEO Jim Marietta challenging Jaguar and Aston Martin at Shelby American press event
If the 1965 Shelby OVC G.T.350 loses, the Original Venice Crew has pledged to donate $100,000 to any charity of the winner’s choice. If the Original Venice Crew were to win, the team would donate $35,000 to the Carroll Shelby Foundation.
OVC Shelby GT350 on track at Willow Springs
“During an illustrious racing career where Shelby drove and won in anything and everything, Carroll developed a profound preference for cubic inches over cubic money,” said Jim Marietta. “That preference was infused into every vehicle rolling out of Shelby American’s shop, beginning with the Cobra and soon after that, the Shelby G.T. 350. It is with Shelby’s ‘everyman’ sensibility that we issued a challenge to both Jaguar and Aston Martin. The field of play is a race course, the proceeds go to charity, and while we can’t go back in time, we intend to relive the history.”
OVC car assembly area at Shelby LA
The cars that would do battle with the Shelby OVC G.T.350 would be Jaguar Classic’s Le Mans-winning D-Type and Aston Martin’s DB4 GT continuation car. The two English cars are valued well into the seven figures, making the OVC Shelby Mustang, which starts at $250,000 modestly priced in comparison.