It was Bob Bondurant and Sir John Whitmore who drove a Ford GT40 "Spyder" in the 1965 Targa (edit: chassis GT/111
). Chassis numbers GT/108 to GT/112 were all built as open top cars. Resilient Resins make a very nice 1/24th scale body of this car, as pictured by Nico. Anyway Swiss, you've given me the opportunity to reminisce… something that happens all too frequently when one turns 50!
I grew up in Milnerton near Cape Town, South Africa, and whenever there was a motor race in town I would cycle to the nearby Killarney racetrack. The highlight of the year was always the Cape Town round of the Springbok Series, a 3-hour endurance race, and seeing all the international stars and the "big-banger" sports cars. Peter Sutcliffe entered his Ford GT40 "roadster" in the 1966 race, which he had also raced in the Kyalami 9-Hour Endurance Race with John Love. From the history books I see that it was chassis number GT/112, but for some reason it was called a Ford "P40" in the entry list.
The Sutcliffe chassis (GT/112) was the last of the original chassis built to roadster spec. It stayed like this for some time until a plastic roof was added to it for 1967 and then completely rebuilt for 1968 as a "proper" GT40 with standard bodywork and nose.
It's interesting that the Ford Mustang Mach I concept car, first shown in public at Watkins Glen in 1962, was a "roadster" design, with a strong resemblance to the original Ford GT:
I have seen several publications which describe the roadsters as the "Ford GT-X1". The X1 was in fact the designation given to the McLaren-built GT/110 chassis that was entered in the USRRC sports car races in 1965, the forerunner to the Can-Am series. It had the long nose used in the 1965 Le Mans 24 Hour race.
At the end of the season, Ford rebuilt GT/110 into Mk. II roadster spec and won the '66 Sebring race with it.