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Published on : Thursday, November 21, 2013
Just in time for the busy holiday travel season, the latest in a series of vintage, eye-catching Indianapolis 500 race cars are on display at the Indianapolis International Airport (IND). The classic cars will greet passengers through October 2014.
1966 BARDAHL EAGLE
One of the very first of a long line of Dan Gurney-produced All-American Racers Eagles, the #14 Bardahl Special led more laps of the 1966 Indianapolis 500 than any other car.
The exceedingly popular driver Lloyd Ruby took the lead from defending world champion Jim Clark on lap 65 and proceeded to lead 68 of the next 86 laps. Just when it appeared the race might be Ruby’s, a chronic oil leak developed, causing the car to be black-flagged twice and finally retired after 166 of the 200 laps.
In the summer of 1968, sporting a different paint job, it was one of the cars used in the making of the motion picture “Winning” starring Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward and Robert Wagner Driver: Lloyd Ruby Entrant: All-American Racers, Inc.
Engine: 255-cubic-inch Ford V8 (non-turbocharged)
Chassis: Gurney Eagle The car is on display on Concourse A near the exit to Civic Plaza.
1957 WOLCOTT SPECIAL #8
West Coast builder Lujie Lesovsky constructed a car for Indiana sportsman Roger Wolcott in 1957 that was a variation on the popular “roadster” concept of mounting the engine to the left and the cockpit over to the right. Lesovsky reversed this, placing the cockpit to the left and engine (laid over at a 20-degree angle) to the right so that the driveshaft ran straight back to the right rear instead of the left rear.
It appeared at Indianapolis three times, driven in 1957 and 1958 by Rodger Ward (winner of the “500” in 1959 and 1962, but in different cars) and in 1959 by Len Sutton (who finished second to Ward in 1962, also in another car). Although it was entered each time with a 170-cubic-inch supercharged Offenhauser engine, it was decided for 1958 to switch to a more standard 255-cubic-inch non-supercharged version. Ward was running second in 1958 when a magneto failed after 93 laps, but later that summer he won the prestigious 200-mile race at Milwaukee.
Drivers: Rodger Ward and Len Sutton
Engine: 4-cylinder 170-cubic-inch Offenhauser (supercharged).
Approximate horsepower: 360 HP at 6,300 RPM.
The car is on display on Concourse B near the exit to Civic Plaza