When stock cars were stock: Pre-NASCAR tales and a flock of vintage Fords - Hagerty Media
Tom Cotter is always looking for new finds for his Barn Find Hunter series, but occasionally he revisits a select few automotive honey holes. And he knew if he ever got back to Georgia he had to return to David Sosebee’s place. Twenty-five years after his first visit, Tom was excited to return and see what Sosbee had hiding around his property. In the latest episode of Barn Find Hunter, Tom does exactly that.
Sosebee isn’t just a hoarder of vintage cars. He’s the son of Gober Sosebee, who was one of the first big names in stock car racing. Many of the cars on the Sosebee property are ex-race cars, but the one David shows Tom first is a production car with an odd options list.
The black 1965 Ford Fairlane 500 tucked back in a dark, block garage is a four-door that packs a 225-horsepower, 289-cubic-inch V-8 mated to a four-speed manual—but not much else. No power brakes. No power steering. Basic black over black interior with a bench front seat, and no air conditioning. It was a custom order that Sosbee’s father insisted on getting as soon as he could—meaning he drove it right off the production line.
Tom and Sosebee head off into the woods to talk about race cars and racetracks. The Sosebee family had aspirations of building a racetrack right on their property in 1946. The land had natural gradient to it, which would have made it less expensive to put up, unfortunately Darlington raceway was constructed first, and the Sosebees decided their venue wouldn’t be able to compete. So they let the idea die.
As Tom says, folks like this, with so many stories to tell, are worth finding just as much as the cars themselves. Listening to David tell stories is worth more than the cars on his property, which is saying a lot since the cars in his field are historic racers that offer a flashback to when stock cars were actually stock cars.
The episode closes with Sosebee telling Tom and the video crew about a time when his father was flat-towing his race car to an event and things suddenly went sideways—literally and figuratively. Worth sticking around ‘til the end just to hear that story.