OldRacingCars.com

Silverstone, Indy

Silverstone, 1 Oct 1978

ResultsLapsTime/Speed
1 AJ Foyt Coyote - Foyt-Ford 159ci quad cam turbo V8
#14 Gilmore/Citicorp [Foyt Enterprises]
38 1h 04m 03.350s
2 Rick Mears Penske PC6 - Cosworth DFX V8
#7 Gould Charge [Penske Racing]
38 Finished
3 Tom Sneva Penske PC6B - Cosworth DFX V8
#1 Norton Spirit [Penske Racing]
(see note 1)
38 Finished
4 Gordon Johncock Wildcat Mk 3 - DGS 158 ci turbo
#20 North American Van Lines [Patrick Racing Team]
(see note 2)
38 Finished
5 Johnny Rutherford McLaren M24B [001?] - Cosworth DFX V8
#4 First National City Travelers Check [Team McLaren]
(see note 3)
38 Finished
6 Steve Krisiloff Wildcat 'Mk 4' - Drake DT 160 V8
#40 Foreman Industries [Patrick Racing Team]
(see note 4)
37 Flagged
7 David "Salt" Walther McLaren M24 - Cosworth DFX V8
#77 Dayton-Walther [George Walther]
(see note 5)
36 Flagged
8 Bobby Unser Eagle 78 Mk II [7801] - Cosworth DFX V8
#48 ARCOgraphite [AAR/Dan Gurney]
28 Cylinder head
9 Spike Gehlhausen Eagle 74 [7405] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#19 Tibon [Carl Gehlhausen]
28 Flagged
10 Al Unser Lola T500 - Cosworth DFX V8
#2 First National City Travelers Checks [Chaparral Racing]
26 Broken pinion gear
11 George Snider Coyote - Foyt-Ford 159ci quad cam turbo V8
#84 Gilmore/Citicorp [Foyt Enterprises]
26 Transmission
12 Dick Simon Vollstedt 77 [14] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#17 La Machine [Vollstedt Enterprises]
25 Flagged
13 Tom Bagley Watson 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
#22 Kent Oil [Leader Card] (see note 6)
16 Piston
14 Wally Dallenbach McLaren M24 [005?] - Cosworth DFX V8
#6 Sugaripe Prune [Jerry O'Connell]
15 Engine
15 Danny Ongais Parnelli VPJ-6B [002] - Cosworth DFX V8
#25 Interscope (see note 7)
5 Broken half shaft
16 Joe Saldana Eagle 72 [7221] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#69 Team 69 [Hoffman] (see note 8)
3 Broken valve
Qualifying
1 Danny Ongais Parnelli VPJ-6B [002] - Cosworth DFX V8
2 Al Unser Lola T500 - Cosworth DFX V8
3 Rick Mears Penske PC6 - Cosworth DFX V8
4 Gordon Johncock Wildcat Mk 3 - DGS 158 ci turbo
5 Bobby Unser Eagle 78 Mk II [7801] - Cosworth DFX V8
6 Johnny Rutherford McLaren M24B [001?] - Cosworth DFX V8
7 Tom Bagley Watson 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
8 Wally Dallenbach McLaren M24 [005?] - Cosworth DFX V8
9 Tom Sneva Penske PC6B - Cosworth DFX V8
10 AJ Foyt Coyote - Foyt-Ford 159ci quad cam turbo V8
11 Steve Krisiloff Wildcat 'Mk 4' - Drake DT 160 V8
12 David "Salt" Walther McLaren M24 - Cosworth DFX V8
13 George Snider Coyote - Foyt-Ford 159ci quad cam turbo V8
14 Joe Saldana Eagle 72 [7221] - Offy 159 ci turbo
15 Dick Simon Vollstedt 77 [14] - Offy 159 ci turbo
16 Spike Gehlhausen Eagle 74 [7405] - Offy 159 ci turbo

Notes on the cars:

  1. Penske PC6B (Tom Sneva): Sneva's late season PC6B. Said (Autosport 14 Sep 1978 p20) to be the car used since Pocono. The Harms/Ferner data calls Sneva's car a PC6/78 all season but this PC6B assumed to be used through to the end of 1978 (despite the wreck at Ontario and the rebuild in time for Michigan).
  2. Wildcat Mk 3 (Gordon Johncock): These cars were raced very rarely: the 1977 Hungness (p46) saying that "Bignotti's new Wildcat, debuted in March, wasn't run at the Speedway" accompanied by a photo of an unpainted Mk 3, implying the car hasn't yet raced. Later, Formula (Nov 1977 p35) says: "the smaller, slimmer chisel-nosed Mk.3 Wildcats which appeared at the Mosport road race have not been seen since". The car used briefly by Johncock during 1977 is presumably the car retained for 1978. Having 'lost' his Mk 2 in a crash at Ontario (Autosport 28 Sep 1978 p12), Steve Krisiloff had a Mk 3 ('originally designed specifically for road racing') fitted with a Drake V8 for the two British races in late 1978. He crashed this car before the start of the second race, Brands Hatch. A Mk 3 then appears early in 1979 with a Cosworth DFX for returnee Dallenbach to use before his Penske PC6 is ready. It's possible that this is the #90 "1979 Wildcat-Cosworth" at the 1979 Indy 500.
  3. McLaren M24B [001?] (Johnny Rutherford): Johnny Rutherford's intended #4 Team McLaren entry at the 1978 Indy 500 but not run. First used at Milwaukee and Pocono in June 1978 (Autosport 6 Jul 1978 p29) and presumably used for the rest of the season. Definitely used at Ontario (Autosport 14 Sep 1978 p21), Silverstone (Autosport 5 Oct 1978 p19) and Brands Hatch (Autosport 12 Oct 1978 p21).
  4. Wildcat 'Mk 4' (Steve Krisiloff): Patrick Racing built a revised Wildcat for 1978 to take the new Drake DT-160 V8 engine. It appears to have raced first at Trenton in April, where Roger McCluskey raced it as the #60 entry, and appeared again at Mosport in June for Johncock but crashed in practice. McCluskey again raced it at Ontario in September (where it was fitted with a Mk 2-style nose) after which it became Steve Krisiloff's car at Michigan, Silverstone and Brands Hatch. Krisiloff crashed it after practice at Brands Hatch and it was not seen again.
  5. McLaren M24 (David "Salt" Walther): New to Penske Racing in 1977 for Tom Sneva to drive as the #8 Norton Spirit entry. Sold to George Walther for his son Salt Walther to drive in 1978, and identified by the Hungness yearbook as the car driven by Salt Walther at the 1978 "500". Walther also had the ex-Andretti M24, and exactly how he used the two cars in 1978 is not yet known. Walther acquired Penske PC6s for 1979, but it appears that both M24s were retained that year. It is said that George Walther traded this car back to Roger Penske in 1989, when Walther was trying to acquire two 1988 Penskes. The car was restored back to Sneva's 1977 livery and placed in the Penske Racing Museum.
  6. Watson 77 (Tom Bagley): Sheldon Kinser started 1978 with the only Watson, presumably the team's 1977 car. Kinser then took the 1978 car for the Indy 500 but only Bagley drove the next race (Mosport) and by the time Kinser returned at Pocono, he was in the 77 car (ditto at Ontario). Assumed to have been driven by Kinser for the rest of the year. Maybe then Kinser's #24 through 1979 and then maybe the basis of his #24 Watson-DFX through 1980.
  7. Parnelli VPJ-6B [002] (Danny Ongais): Danny Ongais had used the second Parnelli VPJ6B up to Indy 1978 and it is reasonable to assume that it became his spare car thereafter. According to Autosport (16 Aug 1979 p20), Ongais used chassis 002 at Silverstone and Brands Hatch 1978 and also at Watkins Glen in Aug 1979, it having not been run in the meantime. At his last race prior to Watkins Glen, Ongais had wrecked a VPJ6B at Michigan (15 Jul 1979) so perhaps he was forced to bring out the older car. Alternatively, 002 might have been the car reserved for road racing as Watkins Glen was the first road race since Brands.
  8. Eagle 72 [7221] (Joe Saldana): New to Leader Card Racers in time for the TWS race at the start of 1973. Raced by Mike Mosley as the #98 Leader Card entry. Then taken to the Indy 500 as a backup, renumbered #97, and qualified by Rick Muther. It was then Mosley's short track car, and raced by Muther at Pocono and by Johnny Parsons Jr at Ontario and at the late-season races. Presumably for Parsons again at Ontario in March 1974. Then Mosley's short track car when he wasn't using his new 1974 Eagle. Signs of repairs to the left side of this car allow it to be identified from 1975 onwards. It was raced by George Snider as the #97 at Ontario at the start of 1975, then by Steve Krisiloff in the Indy 500 as the #98 and later in the season as the #98 and then the #10. For 1976, the car was sold to Patrick Santello and was his #65 City of Syracuse or S&M Electric entry that season for Larry Dickson and Lee Kunzman. Then to Gus and Richard Hoffman (Milford, OH) of Hoffman Racing for 1977 and entered for Jerry Grant and later Joe Saldana as the #69. Driven again by Saldana in 1978 and 1979. Also appeared once for Bob Frey in 1980. Reappeared briefly in 1982 when it was entered by George T. Smith's GTS Racing as the #86 Empress Traveler for Al Loquasto. Sold by Smith to Chuck Haines (St Louis, MO) who sold it to Bob Colllings (Boston, MA) in April 1985. Retained by Collings and now forms part of the auto collection in The Collings Foundation (Stow, MA).

Sources

The identification of individual cars in these results is based on the material presented elsewhere in this site and may in some cases contradict the organisers' orginal results.

The foundation for this research is the work done by the late Phil Harms collating the results of all AAA, USAC and CART races, including the period covered here. His data was refined by Michael Ferner who added more information before making it available to OldRacingCars.com. Since the start of the USAC project on OldRacingCars.com in 2004, a wealth of further information has been gleaned from the Carl Hungness and Donald Davidson Yearbooks and other published sources. Gerry Measures has also provided much information from his files as have others on TNF and Trackforum.

All comments, clarifications, corrections and additions are most welcome. Please email Allen if you can add anything.