12-14 August 2010
1963 1/2 Ford Galaxie Holman & Moody NASCAR Race Car
Sold for $126,500
-Famous Dan Gurney #28 Galaxie
-Winner of the 1963 Motor Trend 500 at Riverside, California
-Extensively documented and fully restored
Sanctioned by NASCAR but open to USAC and FIA drivers as well, the 500 mile Riverside stock car race was a milestone in all respects. First, it was a worthwhile win for international star Dan Gurney since it paid over $13,000 – the largest purse he had ever won! The race also attracted a record 52,500 spectators after “bombing” at the turnstiles in the previous two years. This win was also a resounding one for the 63 ½ Galaxie, North Carolina’s Holman & Moody and also the LaFayette, North Carolina Ford dealer/sponsor.
Of course, there was nothing standard underneath this standard looking Galaxie. A closer look reveals big racing rubber on 8" rims, straps on the rear window and a very strong roll cage. Holman & Moody’s modifications include the strengthened and gusseted frame, dual shock absorbers, HD springs, sway bars, spindles and bearings. The 427 CID engines are highly tuned. In fact, as long as all the Factory options were listed and available to Ford dealer customers, they were legal for racing.
This race was a Dan Gurney show from beginning to end. He qualified on the pole with a 1.37.67 at a 99.4 mph average, about a second quicker than Fred Lorenzen in another Ford but well ahead of Pontiac’s Paul Goldsmith at 1.39.1. Gurney checked out the opposition in third until he moved into the lead on lap 43 of the 185-lap race, never losing it except for the inevitable shuffles during his five pit stops. Gurney’s main competition – Lorenzen, Parnelli Jones, Goldsmith and Fireball Roberts all faded with car problems, leaving AJ Foyt’s Pontiac in second with Troy Ruttman’s 63 ½ Mercury being scored third overall at the end.
After the 1963 season, the Holman & Moody Ford began its inevitable descent through the lower ranks of racing as the top teams had to field newer model year machines. A Douglas Copper of North Carolina is shown on the car’s AACA Class 24-A Certification as a previous owner, but records and VIN numbers from that early era are, at best, sketchy. When the remains were found, Lee Holman was able to identify its C3/HM 1004 number as the Dan Gurney Riverside winner. A letter from him dated June 2nd, 2006, which confirms its status, is part of the car’s extensive files.
In the 1990s, Historic NASCAR restorer Kim Haines commenced a full restoration of the No. 28 car before demonstrating the Galaxie extensively. The present owner acquired the car in early 2003, and while the car looked visually correct, it was not Historic Race Ready to his team’s standards, so the entire car was mechanically freshened including the supply and installation of a race spec 427 engine. In this form, it was seen at the 2009 Monterey Historics where Dan Gurney drove it and signed the dashboard.
Now re-restored to absolute Pebble Beach standards in every respect, the Gurney Galaxie presents an intriguing option for a new owner. To be sold on Thursday in Monterey, this car is invited to participate in that weekend’s Friday, Saturday and Sunday Laguna Seca races, which this year will honor – you guessed it – Dan Gurney. The new owner will be invited to join the previous owner’s race team and meet the man himself. Memories are made of this!
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