I've finally got my hands on a few copies of an outstanding book (contact me if you're interested in one :). With so many amazing pictures and diagrams, it's the kind of book you'd like to own even if you couldn't read. It's hardbound, thick, heavy, and could take out a burglar should the need arise. Ford GT40 & The New Ford GT is written by Al Axelrod, Brian Winer and Wallace Wyss. It is an in-depth read following the progrssion of Ford from the birth of the Ford GT40 to it's reincarnation as the New Ford GT.
When it comes to Ford GTs, there are enthusiasts and then there are super-enthusiasts. Co-writer Brian Winer qualifies as a super-enthusiast. The following is a candid interview regarding his experience with the car and how his 2007 book came about.
Q.: Brian, where did your passion for the Ford GT began?
Winer; Around 1968 when I was living in Florida I went to the Sebring race and saw the last of the Ford GTs still racing.
Q. : When did your passion re-ignite?
Winer; I bought a new Pantera, a 1972 model in Feb of 1973 which was similar in drive-train to the Ford GT layout, mid-engined, Ford V8 with a ZF 5 speed manual, but always wanted a real Ford GT. When my friend Wallace Wyss told me an engineering firm in England was going to continue production of them in the form of the Safir J.W. Automotive GT40 I went over to England and bought one. It was built in a short run in 1984.
Q.: Did that satisfy the passion?
Winer: Yes, but I also began to collect literature on it and original factory photographs.
I bought out the collection of an author and also have a lot of documentaries. Then Wallace Wyss said “Let’s do a photo archive” so we did one in black and white for Iconografix publishing. Sadly that book is now out of print. It was titled "The Ford GT40 Photo Archive" It surfaces on Amazon and Ebay every once and a while.
Q.: Where did your passion go from there?
Winer: I collected models of Ford GTs but then Wyss called me again around 2002 and said Ford was unveiling a prototype GT40 show car. We began documenting that and thinking about a book. Wyss’ publisher Iconografix couldn’t decide whether they wanted to do a book so we said, hell, let’s do it ourselves. By 2003, Ford announced it was going into production so for the next four years we were able to document the new car as it was being engineered, developed, refined and marketed. I really liked the new GT, as well as the GT40, and was able to
re-finance my home and purchase a new 2006 in August of 2006. Tungsten car. Great.
Q.: Tell us about the book.
Winer 224 pages, hardbound, 32 pages of color . Over 100 b & w pictures. Plus there are parts we love like the interview of Dan Gurney on driving at LeMans that we found in an old book and got permission to re-run and a 3-page profile of Shelby. By the way, rather than interrupt the narrative of the book, we had the words flowing front to back but put the separate profiles of Shelby, Pardo, etc. in separate boxes so you can either read them on the way or read the narrative first and then go back and read what's in the boxes.
Q.Did you have much Ford help?
Winer: More or less. They didn't invite us to the preview, but we got in anyway . I guess Wyss will write a story on that. They did invite us to
Detroit to drive the Ford GT on the test track but we didn't get to hang it all out--that happened later when we borrowed a test car in LA. And then, of course, I ended up buying my own, a tungsten '06 with no stripes.
Q.: Were can we find the book?
Winer: Very few bookstores around the world, it turns out there is only one or two in each country that specialize in spots car books. I have a listing right now on Amazon.com Just enter the title, Ford GT40 and the New Ford GT. Infrequently, I will do a listing on Ebay also. Wyss will be making the books available with his artwork as a package deal.