Monterey

19-20 August 2016

The Jim Click Ford Performance Collection

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Lot 140

1964 Shelby 289 Cobra "CSX 2473"

  • Chassis no. CSX 2473

$2,200,000 - $2,600,000


Please note that Internet bidding is not available for this lot. Interested parties that are unable to attend the sale may register to bid by telephone or place a commission bid online at rmsothebys.com.

Est. 450 bhp, 289 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine, four-speed Borg Warner T-10 manual transmission, independent front and rear suspension with A-arms, transverse leaf springs, and tube shock absorbers, and four-wheel hydraulic disc brakes. Wheelbase: 90 in.

  • Offered from the Jim Click Ford Performance Collection
  • Regarded as “the Winningest Cobra of all time”; 1966 SCCA B-Production National Champion and a three-time Divisional Champion
  • Owned, raced, and maintained by SCCA legend Don Roberts
  • A hugely significant Cobra, ready to be enjoyed in every way


Carroll Shelby earned his reputation on the racetrack. But his legend was truly made when cars bearing his own name started winning at motorsport’s most competitive events. In the hands of both factory-supported drivers and privateers alike, Shelby’s Cobra proved to be a worthy adversary against the industry’s best sports cars on both the road and the track. The Cobra quickly earned wins across the United States and around the world.

This 289 Cobra was no different.

Chassis CSX 2473 was sold new to one of Carroll Shelby’s own employees, James Findlay, who purchased the Cobra at wholesale price and took delivery the moment it arrived from England. As his budget allowed, Findley upgraded the car to competition specification over the course of the next few months, repainting the car in black with white stripes, and fitting larger Halibrand wheels, side pipes, hood scoop, competition roll bar and quick-lift jacks. He then sold the car back to Shelby. Re-sold to Hi-Performance Motors in Los Angeles, the Cobra was purchased by Don Roberts of Phoenix, Arizona, who furthered Findley’s competition upgrades by fitting a windscreen and shortening the springs. Once completed, Roberts took his Cobra racing.

Behind the wheel of CSX 2473, success came instantly for Roberts. In his very first outing at the SCCA regional event in Tucson in November 1966, he finished 1st in the A-production class. Over the next two years, after the car was converted to B-production specification, Roberts would rack up no fewer than 14 1st place finishes, an enviable record for any racing driver in any category. In 1968, he was crowned Southern Pacific Divisional B-Production Class Champion. This win qualified him for the American Road Race of Champions at Riverside, where Roberts decimated the competition. He won his class by more than 30 seconds, earning himself the title of B-Production Class National Champion.

For the 1969 season, Roberts briefly sold CSX 2473 to Bob Rodgers of San Francisco, who continued racing the Cobra in SCCA events, finishing 3rd in the B-production class in both 1969 and 1970. Interestingly enough, Don Roberts would reacquire the car for the 1972 season. Once again, Roberts and CSX 2473 proved unbeatable. The pair won SCCA National events at Willow Springs, Salt Lake City, and Phoenix, en route to claiming his second Southern Pacific Divisional B-Production Class Championship. The following season, Roberts would find himself at the top of the podium once again, winning the championship title for a third time.

In February of 1974, CSX 2473 was sold to Ted Laverack of Salem, Oregon. Laverack then attended the very first Shelby American convention in 1976. In 1979 the car was sold to Larry Less of San Francisco, and two years later, it was acquired once again by none other than Don Roberts, Dave Walters, and Jere Clark. As he had done so often, Roberts returned his prized Cobra to the track, where he found himself behind the wheel at the Monterey Historics, winning the event four years in a row, from 1980 to 1983.

Roberts sold his Cobra for the final time to the UK-based collector Werner Oswald in 1984. CSX 2473 then made its way back to the United States in 1987, when it was purchased by George Stauffer of Wisconsin. That year, the Cobra took part in the 25th Cobra anniversary at the Monterey Historics at Laguna Seca with Don Roberts behind the wheel. Living up to its reputation as the winningest Cobra in existence, it crossed the finish line in first place, once again cementing its place in Cobra lore, Stauffer kept the car for nine years before selling it to Don Lee in 1996. At this time, the car had been refinished in Guardsman Blue and was again returned to the vintage race circuit. Acquired by Mr. Click in 2006, CSX 2473 has been frequently raced at historic events and maintained as necessary in his prized collection . . . by none other than Don Roberts.

In his ownership, Click spared no expense with Don Roberts in making sure that CSX 2473 was fully maintained and ready to race at all times. The car has seen numerous notable 1st place finishes on the vintage racing circuit with Jim Click. Its most famous vintage racing victory was arguably at the 2012 Monterey Motorsports Reunion. That year’s event celebrated the life of Carroll Shelby and featured a Cobra race with 39 entrants. Behind the wheel of CSX 2473, Jim Click emerged victorious after starting from 3rd place on the grid, fighting his way to the checkered flag, repeating its finish at the same event 25 years earlier.

Following the Monterey Historics, the car went through a complete mechanical overhaul and both engine and transmission were removed from the car to be fully rebuilt. The car was fitted with a new rear axle and all of the uprights and brake calipers were rebuilt. Since then, the car has been driven in practice just once and in one race, the 2014 Monterey Historics. Fully prepared and maintained for the 2015 vintage racing season, CSX 2473 did not return to the track but remains ready for future events, where it will surely continue to be highly successful.

Featuring an unrivaled period racing history with countless wins to its name, this Cobra does not claim a single DNF in its illustrious history, highlighting Roberts’ sheer talent behind the wheel and the sheer tenacity of Shelby’s incredible Cobra. Today, CSX 2473 remains ready to return to the track with its next owner, where it is sure to find itself atop the podium once again.

CSX 2473 – RACE RESULTS
DATEEVENTRACE #DRIVERRESULT
November 20, 1966SCCA Regional, Tucson89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
December 4, 1966SCCA Regional, Holtville89Don Roberts2nd OA
January 7, 1967SCCA Regional, Phoenix89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
January 22, 1967All American Hillclimb, Phoenix89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
August 6, 1967SCCA Regional, Riverside89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
August 31, 1967SCCA National, Salt Lake City89Don Roberts2nd OA
September 20, 1967SCCA Hillclimb, Clifton, Arizona89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
1967Southern Pacific Divisional Championship, B-Production89Don Roberts4th
January 6, 1968International Council of Sports Car Clubs, Phoenix89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
January 21, 1968All American Hillclimb, Phoenix89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
February 25, 1968SCCA National, Las Vegas89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
March 10, 1968SCCA National, Willow Springs89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
April 1, 1968SCCA National, Tucson89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
July 21, 1968SCCA National, San Diego89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
September 19, 1968SCCA Hillclimb, Clifton, Arizona89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
October 13, 1968SCCA National, Phoenix89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
November 24, 1968SCCA American Road Race of Champions, Riverside89Don Roberts8th OA, 1st IC
1968Southern Pacific Divisional Championship, B-Production89Don Roberts1st
June 15, 1969SCCA Regional, Seattle89Bob Rodgers1st OA, 1st IC
October 5, 1969SCCA National, Riverside89Bob Rodgers3rd OA
November 30, 1969SCCA American Road Race of Champions, Daytona89Bob Rodgers13th OA, 8th IC
1969Northern Pacific Divisional Championship89Bob Rodgers3rd
November 29, 1970SCCA American Road Race of Champions, Road Atlanta3Bob Rodgers16th OA, 8th IC
1970Northern Pacific Divisional Championship89Don Roberts3rd
August 27, 1972SCCA Regional, Laguna Seca89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
September 4, 1972SCCA Regional, Salt Lake City89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
November 27, 1972SCCA American Road Race of Champions, Road Atlanta89Don Roberts2nd OA, 2nd IC
1972Southern Pacific Divisional Championship, B-Production89Don Roberts1st
April 15, 1973SCCA National, Willow Springs89Don Roberts1st OA, 1st IC
November 4, 1973SCCA American Road Race of Champions, Road Atlanta89Don Roberts2nd OA, 2nd IC
1973Southern Pacific Divisional Championship, B-Production89Don Roberts1st

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Alexander Weaver

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Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

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Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

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Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

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David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

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Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

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Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

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Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

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Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

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A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

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Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

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As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

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Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

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Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

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Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more