This Mustang Had to Cross the Pond to go Racing
Photography by Peter Aylward
This Mustang has followed a long, meandering path to find its current owner and custodian, Mr. David Clifford. It came to the UK by way of Mr. Graham Milsome, who enlisted the help of his ‘Uncle’ Jim Griffin, an old racer from California, to find a suitable Mustang. The favorable exchange rate didn’t hurt either.
Jim found this car, which had been in the Walneuski family’s ownership all its life. Apparently, Grandpa Walneuski gave it to his grandson for his sixteenth birthday and was heartbroken to hear that the youngster really wanted a Honda with a big stereo. Grandpa Walneuski was so distraught that he sold the Mustang to Jim for Graham to collect, as he couldn’t stand having the Mustang unappreciated by his grandson. The car was promptly resprayed and fitted with new hoses and tyres, then taken on a tour of the United States’ west coast before returning with the car to the UK in 1999. From the beginning, the car was Aqua Blue with a blue interior and the body was in extraordinarily good condition with no corrosion and great panel fit.
Graham’s plan was to restore the car to concourse condition and up rate the engine as he and his wife had no children and the prospect seemed unlikely. Construction began on a garage to house the car, but the Mustang never saw its purpose-built home as his wife informed him that they were now expecting. The car was promptly advertised in the back of the Mustang Owners Club magazine and bought by Steve Warrier, who set about race preparation and with the help of John Freeman built the car as it sits today.
The Mustang was then bought by Mr. Robert Cleverly in 2005 and he raced it with Rowan Atkinson (yes, Mr. Bean) at Goodwood. After exchanging hands once more, Mr. Peter Bradfield bought it in June 2009 and raced the car at a number of events including the Pomeroy Trophy, Tour Auto and Silverstone International Trophy meeting in 2010. But the car has primarily been campaigned in the Spa 6hr beginning in 2009, and finishing in all events.
Remember the current owner, David? Well he was looking for a race car in 2013 and enlisted the help of his friend Mr. Patrick Blakeney-Edwards who runs Blakeney Motorsport. David mentioned that was looking for a solid Ford Mustang and Patrick replied that he knew someone, but that he didn’t think the car was for sale. Following a test drive at the Silverstone Classic media day and a lengthy chat with Peter, I became the latest custodian of this excellent vehicle, with a gentleman’s agreement that Peter would be one of the co-drivers at the 2013 Spa six-hour race.
Since then the car has also run the Brands Hatch Classic Festival, Silverstone Classic, Mission Motorsports V8 track day and AC Owners club spring, all at Goodwood. More recently the car has run and completed the Pomeroy Trophy and has been entered for 2014 Brands Hatch Classic Festival, 2014 Silverstone Classic and 2014 Spa 6hr.
If you’d like to see more of Mr. Peter Aylward’s photography, click here for his personal site. We’d also like to thank Mr. Peter Bradfield for his contribution.