Robby Unser and Andre Ahrle win Indy Legends Pro-Am at Brickyard Vintage Racing Invitational
INDIANAPOLIS, Saturday, June 18, 2016 – The Unser family isn’t done finding the way to Victory Circle at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
On Sunday, Robby Unser – a two-time Indy 500 starter and the son of three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Bobby Unser – steered a 1965 Cobra CompR to victory with teammate Andre Ahrle in the Indy Legends Pro-Am, the spotlight event of the four-day Sportscar Vintage Racing Association’s Brickyard Vintage Racing Invitational.
“You have no idea how much it means to be on this podium,” Robby said, sounding a little like his cousin Al Unser Jr., who memorably said “you just don’t know what Indy means” after winning his first Indy 500 in 1992.
Thirty-three former Indianapolis 500 drivers paired with amateurs for a 50-minute race on the 2.439-mile IMS road course. The Ahrle/Unser team won first overall and first in the “A Production” class, with Clair Schwendeman and seven-time “500” starter Richie Hearn taking second in the class. Third in class were Unser Jr. and partner Peter Klutt, who teamed to win the first Indy Legends Pro-Am in 2014.
“This SVRA event is a fantastic event and we love it,” Unser Jr. said.
In the “B Production” class, Gary Moore and 2002 Indy 500 runner-up Paul Tracy won in a 1965 Ford Mustang GT350, giving Tracy a long-awaited opportunity to drink the winner’s milk in Victory Circle.
“For me, it’s a joy to be here and to run here, and to finally go up on top of that podium is obviously a great feeling, and to hold a bottle of milk – that’s the one thing I didn’t get to do in my career that I felt I should have done,” Tracy said. “To be able to do it today with this group of guys, it was a hoot.”
George Del Canto and 11-time “500” starter Davey Hamilton were second in the class, with Charles Bentley and A.J. Foyt IV in third.
Among the others in the field were Roberto Guerrero, Lyn St. James, Davy Jones and Willy T. Ribbs. The range of “500” history stretched from Dick Simon, who first raced in 1970, to 2013 starter Ana Beatriz. Put another way, more than 10 percent of the 287 living Indianapolis 500 drivers filled the grid for the Indy Legends Pro-Am.
A “Garage 34” entry of former Brickyard 400 champion Bill Elliott and NASCAR Cup-winning crew chief Ray Evernham finished 33rd after early problems in their 1965 Chevrolet Corvette.
IMS Historian Donald Davidson served as the Grand Marshal for the event.
The Brickyard Vintage Racing Invitational continues from 8 a.m.-6:15 p.m. on Sunday on the IMS road course and the famed 2.5-mile oval, in vehicles ranging from early 1900s models all the way up to modern cars and everything in between. Tickets are $20, with children 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by an adult.
Additional information on the Sportscar Vintage Racing Association can be found on the SVRA website, http://www.svra.com.