It’s VM’s May/June issue and that means we always celebrate the Indianapolis 500 with several related feature stories.
Almost Immortal! That’s the title of our 7-page Salon feature. The 1981 Wildcat-Cosworth Indy car we focus on is the chassis Mario Andretti piloted to win the 1981 Indy 500…for 138 days. But then, after arguments over passing cars under the yellow, Bobby Unser was declared the winner, relegating this car and Mario to 2nd place. It was not one of the Indy 500’s greatest moments.
In May of 1988, Penske Racing dominated the Indianapolis 500 with the formidable trio of Rick Mears, Danny Sullivan and Al Unser Sr. becoming the first team in Speedway annals to qualify for the entire front row. These three drivers talk about what made Penske’s “Work Ethic” so successful that year at the Speedway, with Mears the eventual winner.
Also in Indy 500 lore, imagine Earl De Vore’s colorful chrome and red Chromolite Special Indy 500 race cars, one of Harry A. Miller’s beauties, decaying on the floor of the Atlantic for almost a century. Read how it got there in “Down with the Ship.”
VM’s highly anticipated My Favorite Race feature this time zeros in on none other than “Big Daddy” Don Garlits, the legendary drag racer naming the 1975 NHRA Winston World Finals at Ontario Motor Speedway as his favorite, where he won the event, set both ET and speed records, and won the first Winston World Championship.
Ferrari enthusiasts will appreciate the story of “Una Normale Berlinetta” 275 GTB Specialé (06885 GT)—a very special, no-nonsense GT race car based on the 275 GTB road car. It’s the only one with competition history and one of the most significant of Ferrari’s GT racing cars.
Al Holbert is fondly remembered in racing circles and especially among Porsche enthusiasts as a five-time IMSA Champion and three-time Le Mans winner. Al not only raced sports cars but tried his hand in NASCAR and finished 4th in his only Indy 500 race. In Part 2 of “A Life Well Lived—Remembering Al Holbert,” we see Holbert transitioning into many different areas of racing before his untimely demise in a plane crash.
Love motorcycles? How about more than 70 pre-1975 motocross bikes in a mind-blowing collection like no other—Husqvarna, penton, Triumph, Honda, Rickman, Suzuki, Yamaha, Matchless—name it, they’re probably all here.
Have you ever thought about building a garage/shop? Our editor D. Randy R iggs did, and he discloses the challenges and hurdles of construction and planning in the feature titles, “Vroom Room.” But just don’t call it a man cave.
As the racing season opens up we cover the vintage racing action at SVRA’s Speed Tour at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta in Braselton, GA, VDCA’s Wild Hare Run at Virginia Int’l Raceway, and HMSA’s first event of the year at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.
Columns by BS Levy, Le Mans 24-Hour winner Jochen Mass, Pete Lyons, Jeff Allison, Fritz Frommeyer and D. Randy Riggs are here too, along with all the recent virtual and live auction action from John L. Stein.
The May/June 2021 Vintage Motorsport issue is in the mail to subscribers and if you are a subscriber, thank you! It’s also on newsstands at Barnes & Noble bookstores nationwide. If you’re not a subscriber, you can go to RACER.com/VMsubs or call 877-425-4103. Single copies can be purchased at our online store here.