For sometime I have been telling you about the great work Jason Thompson and his father Clarence are doing with the restoration of the Banjo Matthews Ford Talladgea Prototypes. There is the red one that was done just in time for the 2010 Talladega Family Reunion. This car will soon be featured in Muscle Car Review magazine. The other, white car, was displayed in its “barn find” condition at that show held in conjunction with the Forge Muscle Car Show in Kingsport, TN.
This is the red Banjo Matthews Prototype when the Resto-Duo acquired the car. (I don’t think the cat was a factory option.)
This is the same car after our Super Heros completed the Restoration.
This is the white prototype in the Floyd Garrett Museum in the same condition it was in when acquired. From here it went to the First Talladega Family Reunion and then into the Duo’s shop for a light freshening.
After the Reunion Jason and Clarence took the white prototype back to their shop with the intent of giving it a full restoration comparable to what they did to the red car. Some of us were telling the Super Hero Resto-Duo to cool their heals and leave the car in its original condition. However, this may be a good time to point out that “original condition” may be a little misleading on cars like this. Since they are pre-production prototypes and used for a variety of purposes they are not unlike an old race car; they have many possible configurations. Old race cars can be used for years, have many drivers and sponsors over that time. Often they can even have different years of sheet metal attached to the chassis over that time period. Well, the prototypes might be used for testing different design details, photo shoots for brochures or magazine and will often be painted different colors to make the public believe there is more than one car. So what is considered original condition? The very first version? The most viewed version? How about the last version? I think it is up to the restorer, what was their favorite version or what was the most historically significant?
We got a little off track with that but our Super Heros did some mechanical repairs, polished up the paint and added a missing decal to the side and presto, a pretty cool car. According to our Super Hero Duo they have now decided to sit tight with the white Banjo Matthews prototype and enjoy it for a year or so. The car isn’t so perfect it can’t be driven but still unique, rare and in good enough condition to be shown.
Check out these before and after photos to see what a tremendous difference there is with some talented efforts.
You will be able to see this car and some other unique surprises at the 2011 Talladega Family Reunion, see ya there!