We Have A Winner!

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As hard as I thought this quiz was, many of you proved me wrong – that it was possibly too easy. I don’t think so. Except for getting possession of a brand new Oilpressure.com polo as a prize, it seems like many of you enjoyed doing the research and  looking up the answers just for the fun of it. Hopefully, everyone who submitted an entry learned something. I will say that the number of entrants was way down. I don’t think this was due to declining interest, rather it was because the quiz was not for the casual fan. You need to know your stuff. Those that submitted entries know their stuff.

For the second year in a row, our winner was Mike from Vernon Hills – a longtime caller to The Talk of Gasoline Alley. For over a week, longtime reader and regular commentor Billy the Skink was the leader in the clubhouse having only missed three. But early Tuesday morning, Mike sent in his answers and he missed only two. Over the years there have been winners that have won more than once, but I’m not sure there has ever been someone who won in consecutive years.

Below are the answers to the questions. Thanks to everyone for playing along and congratulations to Mike.

George Phillips

1. What future multi-year starter served on Andy Lindon’s pit crew in 1956? – Roger McCluskey

2. Which Indianapolis 500 winner ran only one road race in his career, that being at Sebring? In what year and where did he finish? – Bob Sweikert finished third at Sebring in 1956.

3. Which Indianapolis 500 winning driver holds the record for the shortest time between winning the “500” and being fatally injured in racing? – Ray Keech, who won the 1929 Indianapolis 500 and was fatally injured at Altoona on June 15, 1929 – just sixteen days after winning the “500”.

4. A team raced in the Indianapolis 500 only once – but in that one year, had their drivers qualify first and second. Who was the team, who were the drivers and in what year? – Mayer Motor Racing. Tom Sneva and Howdy Holmes in 1984.

5. There have been three drivers with the familial birth names of Stewart to drive in the Indianapolis 500. Name them. – Jackie Stewart, Tony Stewart and George Stewart (Leon Duray)

6. When Gordon Johncock beat Rick Mears to the line by .16 seconds in the 1982 Indianapolis 500, it was the shortest margin of victory in history; only to be surpassed by the 1992 race that still holds the record. Prior to 1982, which race had the closest margin of victory? Who was the winner and who came in second? – 1937. Wilbur Shaw finished 2.16 seconds over Ralph Hepburn

7. In 1991, a Dodge Viper pre-production prototype paced the Indianapolis 500. What was the only other year a pre-production prototype was used as the pace car? What type of car was it? – 1941. Chrysler Newport Parade Phaeton

8. What car did Bill Vukovich take his rookie test in at Indianapolis? – The Boyle Maserati – the Wilbur Shaw winning car in 1939 and 1940.

9. Who is the only driver to win the Indianapolis 500, the national championship and the sprint car championship all in the same season? – Bob Sweikert in 1955

10. Who was the first driver to ever lead a lap in the Indianapolis 500? – Johnny Aitken – Lap One in 1911

11. It has been well-documented that Troy Ruttman is still the youngest winner of the Indianapolis 500. Who is the youngest pole-sitter? What year and what was his age? – Rex Mays in 1935 at the age of twenty-two

12. Parnelli Jones drove Ol’ Calhoun to victory in the 1963 Indianapolis 500. Who was the first driver to drive the iconic car in the race? – Lloyd Ruby

13. Who was the first two-time winning team “manager” or “strategist” in the Indianapolis 500? – Johnny Aitken in 1912 for Joe Dawson and 1913 for Jules Goux

14. What driver gave up his full-time ride to a future legend, in order to have a part-time ride that led to an Indianapolis 500 victory that very same season? – Jimmy Bryan left the Dean Van Lines Special in 1958 to drive the George Salih lay-down Offy. Rookie AJ Foyt took over the Dean Van Lines ride.

15. The pace car has been built by a US manufacturer every year. One year, the pace car originally chosen was built by a foreign manufacturer, but Speedway officials bowed to public pressure from the UAW among others and changed to a car from a US manufacturer. What was the year, what was the original pace car chosen and what car ultimately paced the field that year?- In 1991, The Dodge Stealth, built by Japanese manufacturer Mitsubishi, was originally chosen. It was replaced by the Dodge Viper prototype.

16. What is the record for the lowest starting position that won the Indianapolis 500? (Hint: It’s a tie) – 28th – Twice. 1911 with Ray Harroun and 1936 with Louis Meyer

17. Which veteran Indianapolis 500 driver appeared in the classic film The Ten Commandments? – Cliff Bergere

18. When Jim Clark won the pole in 1964, he came the first foreign pole winner since which driver and in what year? – René Thomas in 1919

19. The car driven to victory in 1955 by Bob Sweikert was driven the following year by Troy Ruttman. Who did car owner John Zink originally offer the car to before signing Ruttman? – Sir Stirling Moss

20. What driver completed 1,799 of a possible 1,800 laps over a nine race span? – Ted Horne from 1936 to 1948

21. Who was the first driver to return the following year to defend his Indianapolis 500 championship? – Jules Goux, who won in 1913 and returned in 1914.

22. Who is the oldest Indianapolis 500 pole winner ever? – Cliff Bergere in 1946 at age 49

23. A legendary story involves an official not allowing a pitted car to return to action with a broken spring. Mechanics found an unattended car in the infield with a similar spring. They removed the spring and placed it on the pitted car allowing it to return to the race and ultimately finishing in thirteenth place. When the race was over, the spring was returned to the car with the owner never knowing the difference. What year did this happen? Who was the driver and what type of car was he driving – 1930 – Chet Miller in a Fronty-Ford

24. What driver had the most Indianapolis 500 starts before earning his first win? What was the year and how many races did he start before winning? – Sam Hanks in 1957 after thirteen starts

25. It is well-known that Tom Sneva was the first to turn an official lap at over 200 mph in 1977. Who was the second person to officially break the 200 mph barrier? – Rick Mears in 1978

26. In one race, a driver started on the pole in one car and won that same race in another. Who was the driver and in what year? – Mauri Rose started the 1941 race on the pole in car No.3 and won the race in car No.16.

27. Which multiple pole-winning driver went the longest period of time between poles? – Mario Andretti, the pole winner in 1967 and again in 1987. He also won the 1966 pole.

28. AJ Watson built and entered his first car in 1949, but it was bumped. Who was the driver? – Pat Flaherty

29. What was the last year that trains ran from downtown Indianapolis to the main gate at 16th and Georgetown for fans on Race Morning? – 1963

30. Who was the last driver to be fatally injured after taking the green flag on a qualifying attempt for the Indianapolis 500? What year? – Stubby Stubblefield in 1935

31. What is the oldest documented chassis to ever run in the Indianapolis 500? Who drove it in the last year it ran? What was the year? – Doc Williams drove the Clarke Motors Special in 1948. It started sixth and finished twenty-ninth. It was a Cooper that had originally been driven in the 1927 race.

32. What was the original working title for what is now known as the Borg-Warner Trophy? – The Men of Motors Trophy

33. Who was the first driver to win the Indianapolis 500 with their brother in the same field? – Ralph DePalma in 1915. His brother John DePalma finished twenty-first.

Tie-Breaker: What was the first entry to be sponsored by a cigarette company? What was the year and who was the driver? – The Cocktail Hour Cigarette Special in 1935 with Al Gordon as the driver.
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8 Responses to “We Have A Winner!”

  1. Question 30 threw me off, I would have that that was Gordon Smiley in 82.

  2. Ron Ford Says:

    Tony Bettenhausen Sr. passed up a Indy500 ride in what car that subsequently won the race. Who drove it to victory? Why did Tough Luck Tony pass up the ride?

    • Without looking, I’m thinking it was the 1952 car driven by Troy Ruttman. He opted for the Blue Crown Special owned by Lou Moore…I think. Or I’d could be when he sided with ASPAR in 1947, but I don’t think he was slated for Rose’s ride, was he?

      • Ron Ford Says:

        Close, but no tenderloin. It was the beautiful #99 Belanger Special that is in the IMS museum. Lee Wallard drove it to victory in 1951. At the time it made me crazy when Tony passed on that ride. Tony was a stubborn ol’ Dutchman who sometimes was the cause of his tough luck.

  3. There were two I thought I had correct but was wrong. About 10 I guessed on. I was pleased to see I got no 29 right about the trains. I tried so hard to find the answer about the Borg-Warner trophy. I did learn a lot though and enjoy that part so much. Thanks George.

  4. billytheskink Says:

    Great contest as always George, very challenging and very fun. I’m kicking myself on one of the ones that I missed, but less so on the other two (man, they were hard!).

    Here’s the list of trivia contest winners over the years:

    2010: Bicklemom
    2011: no contest?
    2012: yours truly
    2013: BryanBe (prize winner) and Steven Kilsdonk
    2014: Ryan Svaboda (prize winner) and yours truly
    2015: Paul Dalbey
    2016: Mike from Vernon Hills
    2017: Mike from Vernon Hills

    Congratulations to Mike from Vernon Hills on becoming the Wilbur Shaw of the Annual Oilpressure Trivia Contest. Remember that folks, because one day there will be an Oilpressure Trivia Contest trivia contest.

    • Mike from Vernon Hills Says:

      Thanks Billy. This is the most exciting thing that has happened to me since I won the “Tunnelhead of the Year” contest on the Windtunnel with Dave Despain Show in 2005.

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