Skip to comments.Driver Gary Bettenhausen dies at 72
Posted on 03/17/2014 7:38:03 PM PDT by EveningStar
Gary Bettenhausen, who auto racing legend Mario Andretti said "was all that we loved about the people who did our business" but who paid a huge professional price for that love, died Sunday night at his home in Monrovia, Ind. He was 72.
"It was so natural to become friends with him," Andretti said. "He was a great ambassador of the sport."
The oldest of the second generation of racing Bettenhausens from Tinley Park, a family recognized as much for its multiple tragedies as for its success on the track, Mr. Bettenhausen seemed like a sure thing right from the start of his career.
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The name is really familiar but I don’t guess I know anything about him other than he was in racing.
Mario wasn’t a bad one either.
sad...the family tried and tried to win the 500 but had no luck...I have a DVD of an Indy 500 race from the 80’s where Bettenhausen broke down after his car died during the first half of the race as he really thought it was his year...
72, damn... RIP
Gary Bettenhausen and his brother Tony were from a different generation of Indy drivers. They came out of sprint cars and off the dirt tracks. Once in a while they had a shot at a good finish but many times they were there for the love of racing. I think of guys like Mel Kenyon and Steve Krisiloff being in the same mold. I ran into Mel Kenyon’s neighbor at the track a year or two ago; he had his autograph on his shirt. It was these guys who made the Golden Age of the 500.
Taking the big Checker Flag!
Anyone that can fly down the front stretch and turn left earns a respect.
To get to a point that Racing consumes You finds You at a track that can break You,or make You,
the Indy 500.
Old school guy, survived many big crashes in sprint cars before safety equipment was really improved.
One of the racing families that has paid dearly to play.
but considering some of his wrecks along the way..
somebody was watching out for him.