This Week in Racing History (May 21-27)

May 21 Drag, Indycar, and sportscar racer Danny "on the Gas" Ongais born in Hawaii, USA (1942). Leo Kinnunen drives a Porsche 917/10 to win Interseries race at Silverstone, England (1972). Three-time Indy 500 winner Johnny...

May 21
Drag, Indycar, and sportscar racer Danny "on the Gas" Ongais born in Hawaii, USA (1942).


Leo Kinnunen drives a Porsche 917/10 to win Interseries race at Silverstone, England (1972).


Three-time Indy 500 winner Johnny Rutherford announces his retirement (1994).


Jimmy Nix dies in crash during exhibition drag race in Ennis, Texas, USA (1994).

May 22
F1 racer Pedro Diniz born (1970).


Janet Guthrie becomes the first woman to qualify for the Indianapolis 500 (1977).

May 23
Sportscar racer Gerard Larrousse born (1940).


Dr. Henry Bock of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway medical staff rules that rookie Jacques Villeneuve cannot compete in the Indy 500 because of a concussion suffered in a practice crash (1984).

May 24
Jim Malloy wins the CAMRA Strawberry Cup at Victoria, British Columbia, Canada (1965).


NASCAR driver Ricky Craven born (1966).


Al Unser Sr. wins his third Indy 500 (1981).

My 25
Mechanic, crew chief, and innovator Smokey Yunick born in Maryville, Tennessee, USA (1923).


The ladybug had always been Johnny Rutherford's goodluck charm and he always had one painted on his race cars. Just before the start of the Indy 500, a ladybug flies into his hair. He goes on to win the race driving the Pennzoil "Yellow Submarine" Chaparral (1981).

May 26
F1 racer Piers Courage born (1942).


Jean-Pierre Beltoise drives a Matra MS-11 with V12 Matra engine in its race debut in the Monoco Grand Prix (1968).


Danny Sullivan wins the Indy 500 after spinning his March 360 degrees on lap 120. First Indy 500 where all 33 starters qualified at over 200 mph (1985).


Robbie Stanley dies in sprint car crash at Winchester, Indiana, USA (1994).

May 27
First "Baby 500" for roadsters run at Jungle Park near Brazil, Illinois, USA (1950).


Pierre-Henri Raphanel, one of the founders of the BPR sportscar series, is born (1961).


Rick mears wins his second Indy 500. Race rookies include Michael Andretti, Roberto Guerrero, and Al Holbert (1984).

-Michael J. Stucker-

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Series History
Drivers Jacques Villeneuve , Michael Andretti , Ricky Craven , Al Unser Sr. , Danny Sullivan , Al Holbert , Janet Guthrie , Pierre-Henri Raphanel , Gerard Larrousse , Jean-Pierre Beltoise , Johnny Rutherford , Pedro Diniz