The Falcon holds a prominent place in Australian muscle car history. When Ford Australia Managing Director Bill Bourke introduced the XR GT, its racing provenance was soon in the making. With a 289 V8 powering the car, Harry Firth of the Ford Works Team took the Falcon racing at Bathurst – Mount Panorama. It was groundbreaking since the course had previously been considered too difficult for a full-bodied car like the Falcon. Firth and Fred Gibson won the then named Gallaher 500 by 11 seconds and set the course for GM’s Holden and Chrysler Australia to get involved in racing. The resulting rivalries and brand loyalties have built generations of muscle car lovers in Australia.