Brands Hatch Indy Trophy
Brands Hatch, 7 Oct 1978
|1||Rick Mears||Penske PC6 - Cosworth DFX V8
#7 Gould Charge [Penske Racing]
|100||1h 15m 23.450s
|2||Tom Sneva||Penske PC6B - Cosworth DFX V8
#1 Norton Spirit [Penske Racing]
(see note 1)
|3||Johnny Rutherford||McLaren M24B [001?] - Cosworth DFX V8
#4 First National City Travelers Check [Team McLaren]
(see note 2)
|4||AJ Foyt||Coyote 78 ['78-1'] - Foyt-Ford 159 ci quad cam turbo V8
#14 Gilmore/Citicorp [Foyt Enterprises]
(see note 3)
|5||Wally Dallenbach||McLaren M24 - Cosworth DFX V8
#6 Sugaripe Prune [Jerry O'Connell/Jud Phillips]
|6||David "Salt" Walther||McLaren M24  - Cosworth DFX V8
#77 Dayton-Walther [George Walther]
(see note 4)
|7||Dick Simon||Vollstedt 77  - Offy 159 ci turbo
#17 La Machine [Vollstedt Enterprises]
|8||George Snider||Coyote 74 ['74-2'?] - Foyt-Ford 159 ci quad cam turbo V8
#84 Gilmore/Citicorp [Foyt Enterprises]
(see note 5)
|9||Danny Ongais||Parnelli VPJ-6B  - Cosworth DFX V8
#25 Interscope (see note 6)
|10||Joe Saldana||Eagle 72  - Offy 159 ci turbo
#69 Team 69 [Hoffman] (see note 7)
|11||Gordon Johncock||Wildcat Mk 3 - DGS 158 ci turbo
#20 North American Van Lines [Patrick Racing Team]
(see note 8)
|12||Spike Gehlhausen||Eagle 74  - Offy 159 ci turbo
#19 Pieton [Carl Gehlhausen]
|13||Bobby Unser||Eagle 78 Mk II  - Cosworth DFX V8
#48 ARCOgraphite [AAR/Dan Gurney]
|14||Tom Bagley||Watson 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo
#22 Kent Oil [Leader Card] (see note 9)
|15||Al Unser||Lola T500 [HU1-2?] - Cosworth DFX V8
#2 First National City Travelers Checks [Chaparral Racing]
|DNSC||Steve Krisiloff||Wildcat 'Mk 4' - Drake DT 160 V8
#40 Foreman Industries [Patrick Racing Team]
(see note 10)
|Did not start (crashed)|
|1||Al Unser||Lola T500 [HU1-2?] - Cosworth DFX V8|
|2||Rick Mears||Penske PC6 - Cosworth DFX V8|
|3||Danny Ongais||Parnelli VPJ-6B  - Cosworth DFX V8|
|4||Gordon Johncock||Wildcat Mk 3 - DGS 158 ci turbo|
|5||Tom Sneva||Penske PC6B - Cosworth DFX V8|
|6||Bobby Unser||Eagle 78 Mk II  - Cosworth DFX V8|
|7||Johnny Rutherford||McLaren M24B [001?] - Cosworth DFX V8|
|8||Tom Bagley||Watson 77 - Offy 159 ci turbo|
|9||AJ Foyt||Coyote 78 ['78-1'] - Foyt-Ford 159 ci quad cam turbo V8|
|10||Spike Gehlhausen||Eagle 74  - Offy 159 ci turbo|
|11||Dick Simon||Vollstedt 77  - Offy 159 ci turbo|
|13||Wally Dallenbach||McLaren M24 - Cosworth DFX V8|
|14||David "Salt" Walther||McLaren M24  - Cosworth DFX V8|
|15||Joe Saldana||Eagle 72  - Offy 159 ci turbo|
|16||Steve Krisiloff *||Wildcat 'Mk 4' - Drake DT 160 V8|
|16||George Snider||Coyote 74 ['74-2'?] - Foyt-Ford 159 ci quad cam turbo V8|
|* Did not start|
Notes on the cars:
- 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).
- 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). This was presumably Rutherford's backup car during the 1979 season, and is believed to be the car he raced at Trenton in June, at Trenton again in August, and at Michigan in September. It is also likely to have been the #94 car raced by Don Whittington at Ontario's California 500 in September.
- Coyote 78 ['78-1'] (AJ Foyt): New for AJ Foyt at the 1978 Indy 500 as Foyt Enterprises' #14 Gilmore Racing entry. It was also raced by Foyt at Pocono in June, at Silverstone and Brands Hatch in October, and at Texas World Speedway in April 1979, the last race appearance of one of the 1973 series Coyotes. With two wins from five starts, it had an even greater record of success than the 1975 car. It was retained by Foyt and appeared to be almost completely unchanged when it was sold at the Foyt auction in 1992 to Tony George, who acquired it on behalf of the IMS Museum.
- 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 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.
- Coyote 74 ['74-2'?] (George Snider): New for AJ Foyt at the 1974 Indy 500 as Foyt Enterprises' #14 Gilmore Racing entry. Photographs show that it was also raced by Foyt at Milwaukee in June, Pocono, Michigan in July, Milwaukee in August, probably Michigan again in September, Trenton in September and Phoenix in November. It was also used to set a new record speedway lap of 217.854 mph at Talladega on 3 August 1974. Photographs also show that this was one of three cars used by Foyt during the 1975 season: at Ontario in March, as his #10 backup car at the Indy 500, and at both Michigan races in July and September 1975. In 1976, Foyt raced the older 1974 car at early-season short track races and the newer 1975 car at the Indy 500, but used this car for every race from Pocono in June to the end of the season. In 1977, it was raced by Foyt at Ontario and Phoenix in March, TWS in April, Pocono, Mosport, and Trenton in September; and by Billy Vukovich at the Indy 500. In 1978, it was raced by Foyt at Phoenix in March, Trenton in April, Mosport, and Milwaukee in June, by Snider at Pocono, and probably at Michigan, where he hit the wall. It may be the car raced by Foyt in the August Milwaukee and by George Snider in the two races in Britain in October 1978, but this remains uncertain. Foyt then bought Parnelli VPJ6Cs, and the Coyotes were finally retired. This car passed to Foyt's long-time sponsor Jim Gilmore and was on display in his second-floor office in Kalamazoo, Michigan, and was in his living room at his home by 1985. After Gilmore died in a traffic accident in 2001, the Coyote moved to the Gilmore Museum, also in Kalamazoo, which had been founded by his uncle, Donald S. Gilmore in 1966. Its display board calls it a 1974 car, and that it was the Talladega record car.
- Parnelli VPJ-6B  (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.
- Eagle 72  (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).
- Wildcat Mk 3 (Gordon Johncock): New for Gordon Johncock as Patrick Racing's #20 STP Oil Treatment entry in 1977, but not taken to the Indy 500 after disappointing testing results. First raced at the Mosport Park race in early July, and not mentioned again, although it may have been used at short track events that season. Johncock's new teammate Steve Krisiloff raced it at Mosport in 1978, and it was then taken out to England as Johncock's mount at the two British Indy races at Silverstone and Brands Hatch in October 1978. It was then driven by Krisiloff at Phoenix three weeks later. Sold to Jim and Don Beaudoin for Billy Engelhart at the Indy 500 in 1979, but he "virtually destroyed" on Sunday 20 May during practice.
- Watson 77 (Tom Bagley): New for Tom Bigelow to drive as the Leader Card #24 Thermo King entry at the 1977 Indy 500. He qualified 22nd and finished sixth. Bigelow raced the Watson at six more races that season, but used one of the team's old Eagles at Mosport Park and at the short-track races. He was replaced by Sheldon Kinser for 1978, and he raced this car at the opening races before moving to the new 1978 car. Tom Bagley then took over the 1977 car for the rest of the season at was at his best on road courses, qualifying fifth at Mosport, seventh at Silverstone and eighth at Brands Hatch. Billy Vukovich took over the car for 1979, the year of the CART/USAC schism and achived several good placing in the poorly-supported USAC races, including second place at Milwaukee in June. The car was only seen a few times in 1980 and was then sold to Harry Schwartz' Rattlesnake Racing for Billy Vukovich to drive in 1981.
- Wildcat 'Mk 4' (Steve Krisiloff): A new car to continue the development of the Drake V8 engine, replacing the original car "written off" at Mosport Park in June 1978. First raced by Roger McCluskey at Ontario in September, then by Steve Krisiloff at Michigan. Then taken to England for Krisiloff to race at Silverstone and Brands Hatch, but Krisiloff crashed it after practice at Brands Hatch. Next seen in 1981, when it had been acquired by Ross Davis (Grand Junction, CO) and was run from Atlanta in late June onwards. Subsequent history unknown.
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 (email@example.com) if you can help in any way with our research.