OldRacingCars.com

Michigan 150

Michigan International Speedway, 17 Sep 1977

ResultsLapsTime/Speed
1 Gordon Johncock Wildcat Mk 2 - DGS 158 ci turbo
#20 STP Double Oil Filter [Patrick Racing]
(see note 1)
75 0h 51m 21.310s
2 Johnny Rutherford McLaren M24 [003?] - Cosworth DFX V8
#2 1st National Travel Check [Team McLaren]
74 Out of fuel
3 Wally Dallenbach Wildcat Mk 2 - DGS 158 ci turbo
#40 STP Oil Treatment [Patrick Racing]
(see note 2)
74 Flagged
4 Al Unser Parnelli VPJ-6B [001] - Cosworth DFX V8
#21 American Racing [Vel's Parnelli Jones Racing]
(see note 3)
72 Broken half shaft
5 Jim McElreath Eagle 74/76 - AMC 209 ci turbo V8
#74 AMC Experimental [McElreath]
(see note 4)
72 Flagged
6 Larry Dickson McLaren M16E [001] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#80 WKYG Radio/Polak [Russ Polak]
(see note 5)
71 Flagged
7 Roger McCluskey Lightning 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
#11 First National Travelers Check [Lindsey Hopkins]
(see note 6)
71 Flagged
8 Rick Mears McLaren M16C [4] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#38 Theodore Racing (see note 7)
71 Flagged
9 Bobby Olivero Lightning 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
#78 Alex Foods [Alex Morales] (see note 8)
71 Flagged
10 Tom Sneva McLaren M24 [004] - Cosworth DFX V8
#8 Norton Spirit [Penske Racing]
(see note 9)
69 Out of fuel
11 Al Loquasto McLaren M16C [M16-1?] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#68 Frostie Root Beer [Al Loquasto Sr.]
(see note 10)
69 Flagged
12 Larry Cannon Wildcat Mk 1 - DGS 158 ci turbo
#85 Cannon Brothers [Larry Cannon]
(see note 11)
69 Flagged
13 Spike Gehlhausen Eagle 74 - Offy 159 ci turbo
#19 PV Corp [Carl Gehlhausen] (see note 12)
69 Piston
14 Johnny Parsons Jr McLaren M16B/A [B-3/A-2] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#30 Caesar's Palace [Bill Freeman Racing]
(see note 13)
68 Flagged
15 Tom Bigelow Watson 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
#24 Thermo King [Leader Card] (see note 14)
68 Flagged
16 Lee Kunzman Eagle 74 [7405] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#65 S&M Electric [Patrick Santello]
59 Piston
17 Danny Ongais Parnelli VPJ-6B [002-2?] - Cosworth DFX V8
#25 Interscope Racing (see note 15)
56 Clutch
18 Mike Mosley Lightning 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
#5 Sugaripe Prune [Jerry O'Connell/Jud Phillips]
(see note 16)
54 Engine
19 James McElreath Eagle 74 [7306] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#26 AMAX Energy [McElreath] (see note 17)
24 Poor handling
20 Mario Andretti McLaren M24 [002] - Cosworth DFX V8
#9 CAM2 Motor Oil [Penske Racing]
(see note 18)
21 Clutch
21 George Snider Eagle 74 [7403?] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#23 Leader Card (see note 19)
1 Fuel Pump
22 Joe Saldana Eagle 72 [7221] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#69 Hoffman Racing (see note 20)
0 Engine
DNS Jerry Sneva McLaren M16A [4?] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#36 Bidwell [James C. Bidwell] (see note 21)
Did not start
(Broken half shaft in practice)
DNS David "Salt" Walther McLaren M16C/D [6] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#77 Dayton-Walther [George Walther]
(see note 22)
Did not start
(Blew engine practice)
DNQ Bertil Roos Eagle 72 [7204] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#42 Mergard Racing [Donald Mergard]
(see note 23)
Did not qualify
DNQ Bubby Jones Eagle 72 [7225] - Offy 159 ci turbo
#90 Eastside Cafe [Art Sugai] (see note 24)
Did not qualify
Qualifying
1 Danny Ongais Parnelli VPJ-6B [002-2?] - Cosworth DFX V8
2 Mario Andretti McLaren M24 [002] - Cosworth DFX V8
3 Tom Sneva McLaren M24 [004] - Cosworth DFX V8
4 Johnny Rutherford McLaren M24 [003?] - Cosworth DFX V8
5 Al Unser Parnelli VPJ-6B [001] - Cosworth DFX V8
6 Wally Dallenbach Wildcat Mk 2 - DGS 158 ci turbo
7 Gordon Johncock Wildcat Mk 2 - DGS 158 ci turbo
8 Roger McCluskey Lightning 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
9 Larry Cannon Wildcat Mk 1 - DGS 158 ci turbo
10 Spike Gehlhausen Eagle 74 - Offy 159 ci turbo
11 Rick Mears McLaren M16C [4] - Offy 159 ci turbo
12 Jim McElreath Eagle 74/76 - AMC 209 ci turbo V8
13 Mike Mosley Lightning 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
14 Lee Kunzman Eagle 74 [7405] - Offy 159 ci turbo
15 Al Loquasto McLaren M16C [M16-1?] - Offy 159 ci turbo
16 Johnny Parsons Jr McLaren M16B/A [B-3/A-2] - Offy 159 ci turbo
17 Larry Dickson McLaren M16E [001] - Offy 159 ci turbo
18 George Snider Eagle 74 [7403?] - Offy 159 ci turbo
19 Bobby Olivero Lightning 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
20 Tom Bigelow Watson 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
21 James McElreath Eagle 74 [7306] - Offy 159 ci turbo
22 Joe Saldana Eagle 72 [7221] - Offy 159 ci turbo
23 Bertil Roos * Eagle 72 [7204] - Offy 159 ci turbo
24 Bubby Jones * Eagle 72 [7225] - Offy 159 ci turbo
25 Jerry Sneva * McLaren M16A [4?] - Offy 159 ci turbo
26 David "Salt" Walther * McLaren M16C/D [6] - Offy 159 ci turbo
 
* Did not start

Notes on the cars:

  1. Wildcat Mk 2 (Gordon Johncock): Built by Patrick Racing during 1976, but not run for the first time until the 1977 Indy 500, where it was Gordon Johncock's #20 STP entry. It is believed to have been his regular long-track car in 1977, but he also had his 1976 Mk 2 for short tracks early in the season, and had a Mk 3 which was used at Mosport and at least one short track later in the season. This car became Steve Krisiloff's #40 Foreman Industries car in 1978 until he wrecked it at Ontario in September, in a collision with Cliff Hucul's older Wildcat sent Krisiloff into the wall. Krisiloff had to use the unloved Drake V8-powered Mk 4 for the rest of the season, indicating that Patrick Racing had no Mk 2s left and that this car was not rebuilt.
  2. Wildcat Mk 2 (Wally Dallenbach): Wally Dallenbach had a Wildcat Mk 2 for the 1976 season but we cannot be certain when he drove the Mk 2 that season and when he may have used an older Mk 1. The Mk 3s were produced for 1977 but were only used at a handful of races and Dallenbach drove his 1976 Mk 2 at most races. At the end of 1977, the Dallenbach Mk 2 was sold to Sherman Armstrong's Armstrong Mould team and driven by Tom Bigelow through the 1978 season. It was loaned back to Patrick Racing for Steve Krisiloff to drive at Trenton in September after his usual Mk 2 had been wrecked at Ontario three weeks earlier and the alternative Mk 4 had been shipped to England for the two British races. Retained by Armstrong and driven by Gary Bettenhausen and Howdy Holmes in 1979 and by Bettenhausen in 1980. Used briefly by Rich Vogler as an Armstrong Mould entry in Indy 500 practice in 1981. Subsequent history unknown
  3. Parnelli VPJ-6B [001] (Al Unser): The original 1975 Parnelli was also Unser's primary car at the 1976 Indy 500 and the 1977 Indy 500 (Hungness yearbooks) and wore #21 throughout. Assumed to be Unser's #21 car throughout 1976 and, as Formula refers to the cars "remaining much as was last season", presumed to be the car used in the early 1977 races. Unser had a backup (also #21) at the 1977 Indy 500 but, with this backup written off, Unser must have used this car at Milwaukee and also, according to race reports, at the Pocono 500 (Formula Sep 1977 p42), California 500 (Formula Nov 1977 p35 where the winner is listed in the results as a VPJ6B), Michigan (Autocourse p238) and Phoenix (Autocourse). In between Pocono and Ontario, Unser may have driven the VPJ6C.
  4. Eagle 74/76 (Jim McElreath): Fred W. Carrillo, formerly of Champ Carr Enterprises, had entered a "1974" Eagle in 1975 and then with a 209 ci turbocharged AMC V8 engine in 1976. For 1977 he appeared with a new car said to be built in 1976 on a 1974 Eagle tub, still powered by the AMC engine. This car was entered as the #73 Carillo Rods car for Jim McElreath. Also (almost certainly) the Warner Hodgdon #11 entry for Roger McCluskey through 1978. Subsequent history unknown.
  5. McLaren M16E [001] (Larry Dickson): New in 1975 for McLaren Cars main driver Johnny Rutherford as the #2 Gatorade entry. Raced at the three 500 mile events that year but Rutherford then moved to M16E-2 and this car was next seen at Michigan in 1976 when it was entered by Russ Polak's Polak Racing as the #80 for Larry Dickson. Raced by Dickson until the end of 1977. Then almost certainly the McLaren entered by Jack L. Rhoades as the #20 Scientific Drilling Controls car for John Martin at the 500 mile races in 1979 and for Dana Carter at Indy in 1980. Returned to Indy in 1981 as the #52 Rassey Engines car for Larry Rice. Then unknown until advertised in the late 1980s by Stephen A. Schwartz (Westport, CT), totally restored and in its original Gatorade livery. It was reacquired by McLaren and put on display in the Donington Museum for many years. It was at McLaren HQ in Woking in 2010.
  6. Lightning 77 (Roger McCluskey): New to Lindsey Hopkins' team and entered in 1977 as the #11 First National Travelers Check car for driver Roger McCluskey. Hopkins had a second 1977 Lightning, the #10 car used by Lloyd Ruby at the Indy 500, and exactly how these two cars were used in 1977 is not known with certainty. This car was sold to Patrick Santello for 1978 and appeared at the Indy 500 as the #35 car for Larry Rice, but Rice used the team's old 1974 Eagle at other races that season, and the Lightning's only other outing in 1978 was when raced by Vern Schuppan at Texas World Speedway in August. Retained by Santello in 1979 as the #35 S&M Electric entry for Rice and Tim Richmond. Sold to Jack Lang's Pacific Coast Racing for 1980 and raced as the #86 entry by Al Loquasto at Pocono and Jeff Heywood at Ontario. Then unknown until acquired by World Speedway Champion Barry Briggs in 1988, still in "as raced" yellow #86 livery. Later restored to its 1978 #35 livery, and ran at Indy in May and June 2016. Advertised for sale in May 2018. On display at the Grant King Racers Working Race Shop Museum in May 2019.
  7. McLaren M16C [4] (Rick Mears): The history of this car in 1973 and 1974 remains unproven, but believed to be new for Peter Revson as McLaren Cars' #15 entry at the 1973 Indy 500. Crashed by Revson and it is unclear when the car returned to the team. Almost certainly Johnny Rutherford's black rollhooped short track car in 1974. McLaren records show that M16C/4 was sold to Roger Penske in November 1974. Raced by Tom Sneva in 1975 as the #68 Norton Spirit entry after his original M16C was wrecked at the Indy 500. Used again by Sneva as his #68 car during 1976, and appears to have been the #68 driven by Mario Andretti in two late-season races. Sold to Bill Simpson with M16C/3 and became part of Teddy Yip's Theodore Racing team in 1977 as their #38 car, raced by Clay Regazzoni at the Indy 500 and by Rick Mears later in the season. Unknown in 1978 but reappeared in 1979 as Bill Alsup's #41 WASP Racing car. Raced by Phil Caliva for Alsup Racing in 1980 as the #47 and at Indy 1981 where it was "extensively damaged" on 12 May in an accident during practice. Not seen again.
  8. Lightning 77 (Bobby Olivero): New to Alex Morales for 1977 and entered as the #78 Alex Foods car for Bobby Olivero. Presumably his #78 car for the rest of the season but it is possible that the sister #15 car was also used as the #78 at some points during 1977. Then the #78 Alex Foods car for Max Mosley in 1978 and presumed to be the same #78 car he uses all season but it is again quite likely that the sister car was used somewhere. This was then Pancho Carter's Offy-powered #10 Alex XLNT Foods car at the 1979 Indy 500 and as the sister car had been converted to Drake V8 power, this is presumably the Offy car he used through 1979. As the Drake car was converted to a Cosworth DFX and retained for 1980, this Offy car would be the car sold to John Menard's team and entered as the #28 for Herm Johnson in 1980, still with Offy power. For 1981, the Menard team, led by ex-Parnelli mechanic Dan Cota, extensively modified the car with new ground-effect sidepods and fitted a normally-aspirated Chevrolet stock block engine. The car went well at the Indy 500 but Herm Johnson was bumped. To Larry Walker (Indianapolis, IN) for 1982, and entered by his Timberwood Racers at the Indy 500 in 1982 and 1983 as the #88 Frito-Lay Racer, for Billy Scott in 1982 and Roger Rager in 1983, but did not qualify. Subsequent history unknown.
  9. McLaren M24 [004] (Tom Sneva): 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 intended to use this at the Indy 500, but swapped to the ex-Sneva car for qualifying and the race. Photographs indicate that Walther raced the ex-Sneva car at all races except Pocono and Ontario in 1978, and at Phoenix and Atlanta in early 1979. Walther acquired Penske PC6s for 1979, but it appears that both his M24s were retained that year. The ex-Sneva car remained with Walther until the auction of the team's remaining equipment in October 2002. It was acquired by Penske, and restored over the next three years, first appearing back in Sneva's 1977 livery in the Penske Racing Museum in 2005.
  10. McLaren M16C [M16-1?] (Al Loquasto): To Roger Penske at the 1971 Indy 500 for Mark Donohue (#66 Sunoco). Donohue retired from the Indy 500 but his car was later "destroyed" when Mike Mosley crashed his Eagle into it. It was said that nothing was salvageable and a new car (M16-4) was built in time for Pocono. However, detailed study of photographs establishes that M16-1 was rebuilt and was raced by Gary Bettenhausen for Penske at short-track races in the first half of 1972. Sold to Roy Woods Racing for John Mahler (#74) at Ontario 1972 but wrecked in the race. Not seen again until entered by Roy Woods for David Hobbs (#73) at Ontario September 1973 then for Mahler (#74) at the 1974 Indy 500 but DNQ. It had been updated to M16C form during this time. Sold to Al Loquasto, replacing the M16B he had previously raced, and used from 1975 to 1978 as Loquasto's #86 Frostie Root Beer entry. Loquasto may have used his M16B at some tracks, but no photographic evidence has yet been found for that. Sold by Loquasto to Robert W. LaWarre Sr. (Titusville, FL) for Tony Bettenhausen II (#86 Tilton) late 1979. History then unknown until the M16 was bought from someone in Florida by Joe Baird (Shelbyville, IN) and a partner in the 1990s, when the car still had Loquasto and LaWarre bodywork. Sold via Jim Mann and Steve Truchan to former Formula Atlantic driver Glen A. Smith (Rockwall, TX) and retained by Smith until his death in 2008, after which his wife sold it to Bob Boyce (Michigan City, Indiana).
  11. Wildcat Mk 1 (Larry Cannon): New for Gordy Johncock in 1975 as Patrick Racing's #20 Sinmast entry. Retained for 1976 and used by Johncock at short track events, winning at Trenton and twice finishing second at Milwaukee. Sold to Wildcat Racing Associates (Lynbrook, NY), a partnership of Frank Curtis, Gene Langsam and Walter Albert, with Curtis as chief mechanic and to be raced by Vern Schuppan as the #85 entry. The car was repossessed by lawyers at Pocono, and in August was sold to Danville barber Larry Cannon, who raced it for the rest of 1977 still entered as #85. Retained by Cannon for 1978, 1979 and 1980, qualifying for the Indy 500 in 1980. The car was again entered by Cannon in 1981 for guest drivers. Both Cannon's Wildcats were later bought by Maurice Kraines of Kraco and used as display cars at store openings and malls. Subsequent history unknown.
  12. Eagle 74 (Spike Gehlhausen): New to Robert L. 'Bob' Fletcher's Cobre Firestone team and entered as the #21 car for Jimmy Caruthers in 1974. Firestone withdrew from racing In August 1974 and Fletcher, who ran the largest Firestone dealership in the US, had to use Goodyear tyres in 1975. He also lost chief mechanic Jim McGee to Penske. This car became the white #11 entry for Duane Carter in 1975. Unknown in 1976 but presumably a backup car for Bobby Unser's regular #3 car. Sold to Carl Gehlhausen and entered for Spike Gehlhausen as the #19 PV Corp car at four races towards the end of the 1977 season and then through the 1978 season, until it was crashed heavily at Michigan in September. Gehlhausen then bought Pat Santello's '74 Eagle to replace it. The Michigan wreck is believed to have been repaired for 1979, and may be the car sold to Todd Gibson for 1980.
  13. McLaren M16B/A [B-3/A-2] (Johnny Parsons Jr): McLaren Cars 1972 for Gordy Johncock (#24) and 'wrecked' at Ontario. Repaired and sold to John Martin 1973 (#89) and 1974 and 1975. Wrecked at Milwaukee June 1975 and tub "thrown in dumpster". Rebuilt using a M16A monocoque bought from Lindsey Hopkins, first appearing in this form at Pocono three weeks later, and raced by Martin to the end of 1975. This M16B/A was acquired by Danny Jones and Roy Dickinson in 1976 and rebuilt for the 1977 Indy 500. They were then joined by Bill Freeman Racing, appearing on the 1977 Indy 500 entry list as #30 Caesars Palace entry. Bob Harkey failed to qualify the car at Indy and it was raced by Johnny Parsons Jr later in the 1977 season. To Fred Ruth for 1978 and qualified for the Indy 500 by Jerry Sneva in 1978 as the #30 Smock Material entry. Ruth was joined and at some point as co-owner by Marv Schmidt. Returned again in 1979, entered by Thunder Racing and with Molly Mate sponsorship. It was next seen in 1981 when John Martin qualified at the Indy 500 but was bumped. Cliff Hucul ran it later that year as the #57. Then unknown until 1991 when it was owned by Chuck Haines (St Louis, MO) and still in Hucul livery.
  14. Watson 77 (Tom Bigelow): 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.
  15. Parnelli VPJ-6B [002-2?] (Danny Ongais): Danny Ongais' original Parnelli VPJ6B was written off at Milwaukee in June 1977 and he had a new car for the Pocono 500 later that month. This new car is presumed to be the one he used for the rest of 1977 and is also presumed to be the 1977 Parnelli that was one of Ongais' two cars at the Speedway in 1978 (Autosport 25 May 1978 p31) and his race car (Hungness). However, Ongais is said to have wrecked his older car and resumed in his regular car (Autosport), which casts doubt on the Hungness identification of the 1977 car as his race car.
  16. Lightning 77 (Mike Mosley): New to Jerry O'Connell's team for 1977 and entered as the #5 Sugaripe Prune car for Mike Mosley, with Jud Phillips as chief mechanic. The team used an older 1974 Eagle at some events that year and the Lightning was also raced by Johnny Parsons at Texas. It was fitted with a Cosworth DFX and became the team's spare car for 1978 after O'Connell acquired a McLaren M24 for Wally Dallenbach and would be the Lightning-DFX driven by Billy Vukovich (#32 Sugaripe Prune) as a second team entry at Ontario and finally by Dallenbach (#6 Sugaripe Prune) at Trenton at the end of 1978. Subsequent history unknown.
  17. Eagle 74 [7306] (James McElreath): Patrick Racing acquired a new 1973 Eagle after the 1973 Indy 500, probably either chassis 7305 or 7306. It was fitted with a Ford V8 engine and used in practice at Ontario by Graham McRae as the #60 entry, but failed to qualify. Raced by Dick Simon at two later races that season. It may have been Steve Krisiloff's intended #60 Patrick entry at Indy in 1974, identified by Hungness as an Eagle "of 1973 vintage", but the car Krisiloff actually qualified was an older 1972 car. The 1973 car finally reappeared when raced by Krisiloff at Pocono and a few races later in the 1974 season, by which time it had a turbo Offy engine. Sold by Patrick Racing's chief crew George Bignotti to Fred W. Carrillo (San Juan Capistrano, CA) and entered as the #73 Spirit of Orange County entry for Jerry Grant at Ontario at the start of 1975. This became Carillo's AMC-engined car in late 1975 and early 1976, driven again by Grant, before Carillo acquired a newer Eagle. In 1977, this car was rebuilt to Offy specification and sold to Jim McElreath for son James to drive as the #26 McElreath Racing entry in 1977. Then for Jim McElreath in 1978. In 1979, McElreath acquired a second Eagle, apparently the ex-O'Connell 1974 car, which was numbered as the #23 with the older car continuing as #26. The older car continued in use until 1981. In 2017, it was reported that this was chassis 7306, and had remained at Jim McElreath's home in Texas from 1983 until his death in 2017. It was then owned by Angus Russell (Ormond Beach, FL).
  18. McLaren M24 [002] (Mario Andretti): New to Penske Racing for Mario Andretti to drive as the #9 CAM2 Motor Oil entry at eight races in 1977. Sold to George Walther's Dayton-Walther team for his son Salt Walther to drive in 1978. The ex-Andretti car was Salt's intended race car at the Indy 500, but he swapped to his ex-Tom Sneva car for qualifying and the race. Photographs indicate that Walther raced the ex-Andretti car at Pocono and Ontario in 1978. Walther acquired a new Penske PC6 for 1979, but one of the M24s was retained as a backup. The ex-Andretti car was sold to Tom Frantz (Littleton, CO) for 1980, but only appeared at the Indy 500, where he did not qualify, and was then sold to Don Mergard (Cincinatti, OH), whose crew chief Eddie Meinking fitted a Chevrolet stock block engine. Mergard entered it for Phil Threshie at the Indy 500 in 1981, and for Teddy Pilette in 1982, but both failed to qualify. Mergard advertised the car in February 1982 as being "ex-Andretti". The movements of the car are unknown after that date, but at some point it was restored to the livery Sneva's 1977 pole position car and put on display in the Historic Auto Attractions Museum in Roscoe, Illinois. However, it still had its M24-002 chassis plate, its USAC sticker from when Tom Frantz ran it in 1980, and the Chevrolet stock block engine from the Mergard era.
  19. Eagle 74 [7403?] (George Snider): Mike Mosley's #98 1974 Indy 500 drive for the Lodestar/Leader/Agajanian/Watson combine and identified in a letter from AAR to USAC in Feb 1974 as 7417. Said to be the #98 for Steve Krisiloff in 1975 but the #98 picture in the 1975 yearbook is clearly a 1972 car. Could this be the car Krisiloff wrecked at Phoenix at the end of 1974? It might also be the one he "damaged extensively" in practice at the 1975 Indy (6 May - see trackside report); although the 14 May trackside report says this car was rebuilt, it is an older '72 car that Krisiloff races. Later in 1975, Agajanian left Lodestar/Leader/Watson taking his #97/#98 numbers with him and joined Grant King. Krisiloff's Lodestar/Leader/Watson Eagle then took #10 for the rest of 1975, then moved to the #23/#24 numbers in 1976. Krisiloff may have raced the '74 car later in 1975 but it is not yet known how long the car took to rebuild. At Indy in 1976, Tom Bigelow is bumped in the Leader Card #24 entry which looks like a '74 Eagle but is modified around the front suspension. Maybe 7417 with suitable repairs? Again, the usage of this car in 1976 cannot yet be determined. In 1977, Joe Saldana was bumped in the #64 Leader Card entry, a standard-looking Eagle 74. A picture shows that Saldana's #23 car at the next race was also a '74 Eagle. Finally, at the 1978 Indy 500, Tom Bagley is pictured in Hungness driving a '74 Eagle in practice. As late as 1980, the Leader Card team used an Eagle at short-track events. Subsequent history unknown but this may be the Eagle that Harry Schwartz's Rattlesnake Racing acquired together with a 1977 Watson chassis for 1981.
  20. 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).
  21. McLaren M16A [4?] (Jerry Sneva): Roger Penske 1971 for Mark Donohue (#66 Sunoco) at Pocono and Ontario, replacing M16/1 destroyed at the Indy 500. Also for Donohue in the early races of 1972 and probably the #8 backup entry at the Indy 500. It was then sold to George Walther and raced by Salt Walther later in 1972. The Walthers bought other McLarens over the winter and this was retained as an unused backup in 1973. Walther raced it at Trenton in April 1974 and may have used it at other short-track events in 1974 and 1975. For 1976, it was sold to James C Bidwell (Indianapolis, IN) and Robert Bidwell (Lauderhill, FL) and entered as the #36 Shurfine Foods for Jerry Karl after Indy in 1976 and for Jerry Sneva in 1977. To Frank Fiore (#88 Machinists Union) late season 1978 for Tom Gloy; and Ontario only 1979 for Ken Nichols. Then sold to Buddy Boys (Calgary, Alberta) and entered as the #68 at the Indy 1980 for fellow Canadian Frank Weiss to drive, but crashed heavily during practice. The Hungness Yearbook describes the impact as having been on the left front and the car as "extensively damaged", adding that the injured Weiss had to be released using a Hurst rescue tool, the so-called "jaws of life" which could have done significant damage to the monocoque.
  22. McLaren M16C/D [6] (David "Salt" Walther): New in 1974 for McLaren Cars as a M16C/D for David Hobbs to drive at the 1974 Indy 500 as the #73 Carling Black Label entry. Sold to George Walther by early July for Salt Walther to drive and used as his main #77 car at the Indy 500 in 1975, 1976 and 1977. Walther had other McLarens during this time and he is likely to have used those on short tracks. Sold with M16C/2 to Jerry Karl for 1978 and entered as his #88 Offy car with Frank Fiore as chief mechanic and a #89 RasCar/Atlanta as his backup. How this car was used later is currently unclear. Sold with M16C/2 to Chuck Haines (St Louis, MO) and stored for some years, before undergoing a complete restoration in 2015. Appeared at the Historic Indycar Exhibition in May 2016 in immaculate Carling livery. To Rob Dyson (Millbrook, NY) of Dyson Racing c2017.
  23. Eagle 72 [7204] (Bertil Roos): One of two 1972 Eagles bought new by Jerry O'Connell's Sugaripe Prune team and raced by Billy Vukovich as the #3 entry in 1972, with Jud Phillips as chief mechanic. As the later history of 7207 is known from an invoice, and as the cars have distinct differences that can be seen in photographs, 7204 can be safely identified as Vukovich's 1972 Indy 500 car, after which it swapped roles with 7207 and became his short track car. It remained his short track car in 1973, and is then believed to have raced just twice in 1974. Sold to Donald Mergard and very probably the car raced by Bob Harkey as Mergard Racing's #42 entry at Michigan late that season. Retained by Mergard for another six seasons, racing as the #42 with numerous drivers and sponsors. In 1981, this car appears to have become Tom Frantz' #71 entry for Bob Frey. Subsequent history unknown.
  24. Eagle 72 [7225] (Bubby Jones): To Roger Penske for Mark Donohue to drive as the #66 Sunoco DX car at the three 500 mile races in 1973. It was then driven by Gary Bettenhausen as the #5 Sunoco DX car in place of his usual McLaren M16C at Phoenix in November 1973 and again at Phoenix in March 1974. For 1976, the car was sold to Bill Simpson and raced as his #38 Nikon car until September that year when it was sold to Arthur E. 'Art' Sugai (Ontario, OR) and became the #90 Eastside Café car for Rick Mears. Raced by Mears, Steve Krisiloff and Bubby Jones in 1977. Sold to collector/dealer Chuck Haines (St Louis, MO) in May 1980 and retained by him until purchased by Rick and Alison Dresang (Hartford, WI) in August 2004. Fully restored, and maintained by Kettle Moraine Preservation & Restoration.

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' original 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, Formula and On Track magazines, USAC News, National Speed Sport News and other published sources. Gerry Measures has also provided much information from his files as have others on TNF and Trackforum. Since 2009, the work of Simmo Iskül and others identifying cars from period photographs has has moved this research forward significantly.

All comments, clarifications, corrections and additions are most welcome. Please email Allen (allen@oldracingcars.com) if you can help in any way with our research.