Some previously-unseen footage of the Ford GT40 racing at the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans has surfaced recently, given to the automaker by one Marcellus Chiles – the former soldier who captured it five decades ago.
Ford Performance has since published some of the footage on YouTube, complete with audio commentary from several notable persons who were present at the event: Edsel B. Ford II (son of Henry Ford II), Ford engine builder Mose Nowland, and legendary designer/driver Carroll Shelby. The latter was integral in transforming the Ford GT40 into the competitive machine it eventually became, although according to his comments in this video, much of the credit goes to motorsports engineer Phil Remington, who found a method of changing brake rotors in about a minute.
After slowing from over 200 miles-per-hour for the 90-degree turn at the end of the Mulsanne straight so many times, the brakes on nearly every race car present that day wore quite quickly, we’d imagine. The ability to change brake components so quickly lent the Ford GT40 an upperhand that contributed to its wins in 1966 and ’67, says Mr. Shelby.
To watch nearly three minutes of pure Ford GT40 action at Le Mans, and to hear the comments of the three aforementioned members of Ford royalty, check out the video above.