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here is no one more impor-

tant in the Cobra world than

the Registrar. He is the com-

piler of facts who sorts the wheat from

the chaff. He is the final word on what

is and what isn’t. And he is proba-

bly the single person most respon-

sible, today, for the Cobra being a

genuine blue chip investment in

the automotive world. The regis-

trar isn’t elected or appointed, con-

secrated or anointed. According to

some people, the registrar is either

Yoda, Luke Skywalker or Darth


A marque like the Cobra can

only have one registrar. Imagine if

there were two: you don’t like what

one says about your car so you go

to the other one. Daddy says you

cannot stay up past your bedtime

so you ask Mommy. With the his-

tory and provenance of valuable

cars, that wouldn’t work. The way

it does work is that all owners rec-

ognize the registrar’s authority and,

like it or not, agree with it or not, they

understand that in the Cobra world

there is no higher authority. And that’s

the way it needs to be.

So, how did the Cobra registrar

rise to this lofty position? It didn’t hap-

pen overnight, and no one bequeathed

him a vast treasure trove of infor-

mation. He collected bits and

pieces, here and there, beginning

when the cars were only a few

years old and not many others

who weren’t owners cared about

them. He slowly assembled a col-

lection of details that took shape

as more were added to it. It was

an undertaking he began on his own;

he wasn’t directed by anyone else, and

when he started he had no real idea

where it would eventually lead.

Owners come and go but the reg-

istrar remains, rock-steady as a reli-

able reference source, ready to answer

questions and dispense information

that he has collected over the past

forty-plus years. Cobra owners are for-

tunate there is such a person who em-

bodies the highest standards of

honesty and accuracy because the al-

ternative would be like the wild west.

A car’s “history” would be whatever its

owner said it was. If this was the case,

do you think they would be as sought-

after and valuable as they are today?

Here’s another little-known fact.

The Cobra Registrar operates inde-

pendently of SAAC and any other

owner or enthusiast group. SAAC

willingly assists the registrar and

the registrar shares all of the data

he has collected with SAAC, but

SAAC neither directs nor controls

what the registrar says or does. It’s

the same with all registrars; they

are completely independent and

their work product is their own.

Ned Scudder didn’t become the

Cobra registrar when someone

rubbed a brass lamp causing him

to appear in a flash of smoke. Like

a lot of other Cobra enthusiasts

(and eventual Cobra owners),

Scudder wasn’t quite in high school

in 1963 when he got his first look

at a Cobra. And it was definitely love

at first sight.

SAAC: So, tell us where it all began.

SCUDDER: I was accompanying my

dad to the annual New York Interna-

tional Automobile Show. It was April

1963. We went every year, and we

would go on Friday, which was set-up

day and the public was not al-

lowed in. I would pick up various

press kits which I would take

home. I was also able to sit in

some of the cars. In 1963 there

was a little race Cobra there and

I just fell in love with it. I don’t

recall the serial number at this

point, but the Shelby American


332 Fall 2015

Ned Scudder is the Cobra Registrar. How did that happen?

– Rick Kopec


“According to some people, the registrar

is either Yoda, Luke Skywalker

or Darth Vader.”