Billy Johnson has spent quite a bit of time behind the wheel of a Ford GT, competing for Chip Ganassi Racing, and was also a development driver for Ford Motor Company and Multimatic at one point. However, Johnson has taken on a new role, and will now serve on Shelby American‘s testing team, helping the company refine a number of components on its current and future products, including the engine, suspension, chassis, and aftermarket parts.
“Billy Johnson will play an important role in developing future Shelby vehicles, just as he did at Ford Motor Company and Multimatic,” said Shelby’s Vice President of Operations, Vince LaViolette “After all, Billy is a proven winner who was part of the Ford Ganassi race team that beat Ferrari at Le Mans, 50 years after we did it in 1966.”
“We’re deeply committed to pushing through barriers to enhance the capabilities of our cars, trucks, and parts,” said Shelby American President Gary Patterson. “Those who compete at the highest levels of motorsports have a unique set of skills that can elevate a testing program. Billy’s vast experience in both motorsports and vehicle development can help us achieve even higher levels of performance at Shelby American.”
Johnson has raced in a wide variety of motorsports series over the course of his career, including NASCAR Cup, NASCAR Xfinity, FIA WEC, IMSA, British GT, Blancpain GT World Challenge America, IMSA Michelin Pilot Sportscar Challenge (MPSC), Formula Star Mazda Pro, Formula BMW, and the Skip Barber Regional and National Series, racking up 23 wins, 49 podiums and 61 top-five finishes in the Grand-Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series, as well as the 2016 IMSA Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge GS championship.
“Some of the greatest names in motorsports history, including Ken Miles, Dan Gurney, Bob Bondurant, and Bruce McLaren, developed iconic Shelbys during the 1960s,” said Billy Johnson. “Five decades later, Gary Patterson and Vince LaViolette are the Shelby American test drivers creating the current generation of amazing vehicles. Anyone would be honored to be part of such a legendary organization. As the majority of my career has been spent behind the wheel of Ford performance vehicles, I hope to be an asset to the team.”