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The Friday evening program

began at 6:30 p.m. When Howard

Pardee negotiated with the facility, a

host bar was included in the meal cost.

When everyone showed up they were

pleasantly surprised that there was no

additional charge for beer, wine or soft

drinks. Pardee swaggered around the

ballroom urging people to, “

Drink up,

and have another one. It’s all on me.

No one realized that the cost of drinks

had been figured into the price of the

dinner tickets. As everyone found their

seats and were served dinner, a hun-

dred images of Hertz cars were shown

in a continuous loop on the three large

screens at the front of the room.

The program was opened with a

short music video produced by Ford to

introduce the 1994 Mustang, the car’s

fourth generation and first major re-

design in fifteen years. It was catchy

and was immediately posted on

SAAC’s website [

go to

News & Edito-

rials” > “Of Interest


Kopec assumed the role of Master

of Ceremonies and opened the pro-

gram with typical welcoming remarks,

acknowledgement of SAAC’s Board of

Directors who do all of the heavy lift-

ing to put the convention on, and the

volunteers who arrive and make it all

happen. He also provided the obliga-

tory verbal pummeling of Pardee,

something that has become traditional

at the convention evening program.

Bob McClurg is famous for his

drag race photographs which have

been published in hot rod magazines

since the mid-sixties. He has also writ-

ten hundreds of Mustang and Shelby

articles and served as editor of publi-

cations like

Hot Rod’s Mustang


Mustangs and Fords.

Lately he has

authored a number of books about spe-

cial muscle car subjects like the Yenko

Chevys, AMC performance vehicles

and Tasca Ford. He is a long time

friend of SAAC and has been to dozens

of conventions over the years. He

shared memories of some of the hu-

morous things he’s heard Carroll

Shelby say.

Next on the speaker list was

SAAC Board of Director and sometime

vintage racer Curt Vogt. He has been

working on a special project with Ford

and was able to reveal it that to every-

one. He convinced Ford to include

SAAC members in their “X-Plan”

which allows members to access the

same program as Ford employees and

retirees – to purchase new cars (two a

year) for about $100 over dealer in-

voice. Before everyone starts trying to

decide what color 2016 Ford GT or

Shelby GT350R they want, those cars

are specifically exempted. But virtu-

ally everything else is on the table.

Curt introduced Ford’s Dennis

Mondrach, OEM Special Markets &

Specialty Vehicle Manager, to formally

unveil the X-Plan Partner Recognition

Program and explain how it works.We

are excited about this as it provides a

tangible benefit to SAAC membership.

By the time you read this (or

shortly thereafter), we will have im-

plemented this program and commu-

nicated with every SAAC member,

providing specifics.

We were extremely happy to have

Steve Saleen join us. A few Saleen

owners who are also SAAC members

put together a Saleen “mini-conven-

tion” and invited a number of Saleens,

including ten Saleen competition cars.

Steve spent time with them and also

happened to bring his driving suit and

helmet so he was able to get out on the

track. Naturally, in Saleen Mustangs.

When we asked him to speak on

Friday evening we were half expecting

to hear an infomercial for the newest

Saleen cars, which include special

models of the Mustang, Camaro and

Challenger. And also about a replace-

ment for the S7 super car. But we were

pleasantly surprised when he spent

his time at the podium talking about

his early racing experiences with his

1966 GT350s. The first car went from

parking lot racer to street racer, to


Summer 2016 38