Go like hell, indeed, folks!

20th Century Fox’s upcoming Ford vs. Ferrari movie is shaping up to be a barn burner. The second trailer of the James Mangold-directed film has just dropped, and if you don’t get excited about the movie after watching it, then I don’t know what to tell you. The movie, which stars Matt Damon, Christian Bale, Jon Bernthal, and Catriona Balfe, sheds a unique spotlight on the iconic racing war Ford and Ferrari engaged in back in the 1960s for Le Mans supremacy.

The new trailer dives deep into Ford’s singular focus and motivation to wipe out Ferrari’s dominance in the endurance race after a deal between the two automakers went south in the 11th hour. There’s a lot to unpack with the second trailer, though I’d be remiss if I didn’t say that despite the collective star power in the movie featuring several Hollywood A-listers, the true stars of the trailer are the Ford GT40 and the Ferrari 330 P3.

I can’t tell you what I’m more excited about. Watching Matt Damon and Christian Bale share a screen together or watching how this story is told from the perspective of Ford. Fortunately, one can’t go without the other so we’re getting both at the same time when Ford vs Ferrari hits theaters on November 15. What I can tell you at this point is that I’m intrigued in so many ways about the movie.

I want to see how the principal people behind Ford’s audacious plan to unseat Ferrari’s Le Mans dominance in the 1960s are going to be portrayed.

Judging by the two trailers that have been released, Damon, who plays Carroll Shelby and Bale, who plays Ken Miles, will be at the heart and center of the entire movie.

That would make sense because Shelby’s the one who spearheaded the development of the Ford GT40 that would end up not only accomplishing Ford’s goal of beating Ferrari in Le Mans but also establishing a dynastic run for the Blue Oval, which ended up winning four consecutive Le Mans titles from 1966 to 1969.

Ford vs. Ferrari Trailer 2 - Lots of Racing Drama
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Miles’ inclusion in the movie is the more curious bit, in part because the record books had him finishing second with co-driver Denny Hulme to the team of Bruce McLaren and Chris Amon, who also drove the Ford GT40 during the race. There are numerous stories about Ford’s finish in the 1966 race, but the most prevalent story was that Ford, in a last-second attempt to gain publicity from the race it dominated, instructed all three of its race cars to cross the finish line together. At that time, Miles was leading the race, but when the instructions came down from the team, he slowed down just as he crossed the line to let the GT40 driven by McLaren and Amon to cross the finish line first.

It’s been said that Miles’ move was a form of protest over the perceived slight. Another version of the story, which was reportedly admitted by McLaren, is that despite the team orders, he accelerated his car at the last second so he could cross the finish line first, robbing Miles of the distinction of winning Le Mans, the 24 Hours of Daytona, and the 12 Hours of Sebring all in the same race calendar year. It’s going to be interesting to see how the finish to the race is told in the story.

Judging by how important Miles’ character is in the movie — it’s played by Bale, once again — don’t be surprised if it’s told through his eyes.
Ford vs. Ferrari Trailer 2 - Lots of Racing Drama
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The rest of the trailer also shows other important people who were heavily involved in the development of the Ford GT40 and Ford’s plan to conquer Ferrari at Le Mans. Jon Bernthal, who we all know from Netflix’s Punisher TV series, plays the role of Lee Iacocca, then vice-president of Ford and the man who played important roles in the development of the Ford Pinto and, more importantly, the Ford Mustang.

Veteran TV actor Tracy Letts is also in the movie playing the role of Henry Ford II, the man who gave Shelby, Iacocca, and the rest of Ford’s racing team the green light to, in his words in the movie, “go to war” against Ferrari. Of course, a movie with Ferrari’s name in it wouldn’t be complete without someone portraying the role of Ferrari founder and patriarch Enzo Ferrari. He’s played by Italian actor Remo Girone.

Ford vs. Ferrari Trailer 2 - Lots of Racing Drama
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Speaking of Ferrari, I am intrigued, too, at how the Italian automaker is portrayed in the movie. It shares billing with Ford in the movie’s title, but the story revolves largely around the latter’s behind-the-scenes efforts. Judging by the limited screen time of Enzo Ferrari, it does look like Ferrari’s set up to be the antagonist in the movie.

Then again, we won’t know the full details until the movie hits theaters on November 15.

I can tell you, though, I’ll be watching in on the first day, and if you’re a fan of motorsport racing, you should, too.

Further reading

1964 - 1969 Ford GT40 Exterior
- image 674960

Read our full review on the 1964 - 1969 Ford GT40.

Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert - kirby@topspeed.com
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read More
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