When we left off last time we told you the history as we have it regarding the Skip Mac Farland Drag Race Talladega sponsored by Keats Ford. There is still a lot we don’t know and would welcome any additional information or photos readers can give us regarding this car.
In late 2012 I almost had the car bought and have included some of the photos of where it was stored at that time. The story I was told is the car had been taken to a shop for some kind of work a number of years ago and either the bill was never paid or the car abandoned and parked under some trees behind the building. I am unsure how long it was there but it appears that it might have been quite some time. The elements were not good to it. The seller of the car was not aware of what he had other than it was a Talladega with a Torino nose.
When my deal feel through it was purchased and moved to NY. It appears that new owner knew little more and most likely less about what he had than the previous owner. It was immediately put up for sale for a small but quick profit. Several months later the car was still for sale and purchased by a fellow in Middle TN. I subsequently provided him with any and all information from my research and photos that I had obtained.
I recently visited the car and documented its existing condition and to further verify that it is the Skip Mac Farland/Keats Ford Talladega. Although without a title search showing the chain of title there is no proof that this is the Keats Ford Talladega but any reasonable person presented with the information collected will have little question that this is the car. Let’s summarize what we know:
- This car is a real Talladega, original Maroon in color and was built on February 10, 1969 but not sold new out of Keats Ford until May 21, 1970. That is 15 months later. Was that the time that Mac Farland raced the car and then he or someone else purchased it? Keats Ford only sold one Maroon Talladega.
- From personal inspection the front brakes have been converted to drum brakes, the power brake booster was removed, the power steering was removed, slapper traction bars remain on the rear springs and appear to be the same as in old photos, an electric fuel pump was still in place, original vintage style headers were present, a locker rear end was installed, there are tow hooks on the front end, a trailer light hook up was under the hood for flat towing behind a car or truck, the Torino nose was there but the hood still had the black paint under the newer maroon paint, the Talladega hood latch was still present, the rear staggered shocks are air shocks. All of these items are consistent with a 60s/70s drag car.
- Neither the engine or transmission are original and there is evidence of a 4-speed once being installed.
The car is restorable but it will take considerable effort. The new owner has purchased a solid Torino doner car to help with the worst rust areas. Will the car be restored as a stock Talladega or as it was raced? Or, will it retain its Torino nose and unique place in Talladega legend?
The question has not been fully answered at this point but I can tell you that the new owner already has some steel reproduction Talladega fenders on order and is starting to rebuild the under side and drive train.
I would love to see this car returned to the look that it had in the photo below. I think the Day Two vintage drag race theme should be maintained to as close to how it was back it the day is possible. However, I can also see the return to power disk brakes and power steering as well as a more drivable rear gear ratio. The addition of under dash or vintage air might even make sense for TN summers. What would you recommend? Leave your questions or comments at the bottom of this page in the comments box below. The new owner is somewhat concerned about not destroying the car’s value but at the same time he wants the car to be fun and something he can drive and be proud of.