Back to Racing News & Views
Milwaukee BACK on the schedule!
From Milwaukeemile.com
From Milwaukeemile.com
May 16th 2010 - RE-RUNNING THIS - Bronco

WEST ALLIS, Wis. -- Johnny Rutherford's fond memories of The Milwaukee Mile outstretch his four Indy car victories.

During the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series schedule announcement on the frontstretch, the three-time Indianapolis 500 champion pointed to the Wolcott Special driven by Rodger Ward (1957-58) and Len Sutton (1959) a few feet away. His longtime chief mechanic Herb Porter built the car.

"I saw my first race here in 1960," Rutherford said. "It was a USAC sprint car race, a 50-lapper, and Tony Bettenhausen and A.J. Foyt were going at it. It was exciting.

"This track has always meant so much to Indy car racing because it's been involved in it since virtually the beginning. The only regret I have is I didn't get to run this place when it was dirt. That would have been a lot of fun with those long corners. Herb Porter taught me a lot of running at this place.

"I think it's great for IndyCar to put this track back on the schedule. It again fills a void that many of us who have raced here felt."

A look at The Mile and Indy car:

IZOD IndyCar Series at The Milwaukee Mile
2004: Dario Franchitti (winner). Vitor Meira (pole)
2005: Sam Hornish Jr. (winner and pole)
2006: Tony Kanaan (winner). Helio Castroneves (pole)
2007: Tony Kanaan (winner). Helio Castroneves (pole)
2008: Ryan Briscoe (winner). Marco Andretti (pole)
2009: Scott Dixon (winner). Ryan Briscoe (pole)

In the May 31, 2009, race, Scott Dixon became the first two-time winner of the season and regained the championship points lead from Target Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Dario Franchitti by four. Team Penske’s Ryan Briscoe, the pole sitter and ’08 race winner, led 154 of the 225 laps of the ABC Supply Co. A.J. Foyt 225. Dixon took the lead for the second – and final – time on Lap 201 as Briscoe got held up in lapped traffic in Turn 1.

Dixon then held off Briscoe by 2.1257 seconds in the race that only had two caution periods for 22 laps. Franchitti finished third, Graham Rahal was fourth and Danica Patrick finished fifth.

Brief history of Indy car racing at The Mile
Originally a privately owned horse-racing track, the one-mile oval has been in existence since at least 1876. In 1891, the Agricultural Society of the State of Wisconsin purchased the land to create a permanent site for the Wisconsin State Fair. The track has operated as part of the fairgrounds since.

Auto racing at The Milwaukee Mile debuted on Sept. 11, 1903, when William Jones of Chicago won a five-lap speed contest. It has played host to auto racing every year since. It wasn't until 1915 that the first 100-mile race was held, with Louis Disbrow averaging 62.5 mph to take the checkered flag.

The roster of past winners at The Milwaukee Mile is a veritable “who’s who” of racing history, including Barney Oldfield, Rex Mays, A.J. Foyt, Al Unser, Rick Mears and Mario Andretti.

Notable

• Ten of the 40 starters in the inaugural Indianapolis 500 in 1911 raced at The Milwaukee Mile in a pair of races on the dirt oval.

• Wilbur Shaw won what was the first national championship Indy car points race at The Mile in 1933. Elbert "Babe" Stapp won in 1939 and Rex Mays won in 1941. National championship open-wheel racing returned to the track in 1946.

• In 1963, the first rear-engine car, a Lotus-Ford driven by Jim Clark, won at Milwaukee, and the following year, A.J. Foyt claimed the final win for a front-engine roadster.

• Active IZOD IndyCar Series drivers who have won at Milwaukee are Ryan Briscoe (2008), Scott Dixon (2009), Dario Franchitti (2004), Tony Kanaan (2006, ’07) and Alex Lloyd (2007 in Firestone Indy Lights) under Indy Racing League sanction. Ryan Hunter-Reay (2004) and Paul Tracy (2005, ’02, ’99, ’95) won under CART/Champ Car sanction.

AAA post-World War II era (1946-55) winners and length of race
1946 – Rex Mays (100 miles)
1947 – Bill Holland (100), Charles Van Acker (100), Ted Horn (100)
1948 – Emil Andres (100), Johnny Mantz (100) and Tony Bettenhausen/Myron Fohr (100)
1949 – Myron Fohr (100) and Johnnie Parsons (100)
1950 – Tony Bettenhausen (100) and Walt Faulkner (100)
1951 – Tony Bettenhausen (100) and Walt Faulkner (200)
1952 – Mike Nazaruk (100) and Chuck Stevenson (200)
1953 – Jack McGrath (100) and Chuck Stevenson (200)
1954 – Chuck Stevenson (100) and Manuel Ayulo (250)
1955 – Johnny Thomson (100) and Pat Flaherty (250)

USAC National Championship era (1956-79)
1956 – Pat Flaherty (100) and Jimmy Bryan (250)
1957 – Rodger Ward (100) and Jim Rahtmann (200)
1958 – Art Bisch (100) and Rodger Ward (200)
1959 – Johnny Thomson (100) and Rodger Ward (200)
1960 – Rodger Ward (100) and Len Sutton (200)
1961 – Rodger Ward (100) and Lloyd Ruby (200)
1962 – A.J. Foyt (100) and Rodger Ward(200)
1963 – Rodger Ward (100) and Jim Clark (200)
1964 – A.J. Foyt (100 and Parnelli Jones (200)
1965 – Parnelli Jones (100), Joe Leonard (15) and Gordon Johncock (200)
1966 – Mario Andretti (100) and Mario Andretti (200)
1967 – Gordon Johncock (150) and Mario Andretti (200)
1968 – Lloyd Ruby (150) and Lloyd Ruby (200)
1969 – Art Pollard (150) and Al Unser (200)
1970 – Joe Leonard (150) and Al Unser (200)
1971 – Al Unser (150) and Bobby Unser (200)
1972 – Bobby Unser (150) and Joe Leonard (200)
1973 – Bobby Unser (150) and Wally Dallenbach (200)
1974 – Johnny Rutherford (150) and Gordon Johncock (200)
1975 – A.J. Foyt (150) and Mike Mosley (200)
1976 – Mike Mosley (150) and Al Unser (200)
1977 – Johnny Rutherford (150) and Johnny Rutherford (200)
1978 – Rick Mears (150) and Danny Ongais (200)
1979 – A.J. Foyt (150) and Roger McCluskey (200)

IRL and CART/Champ Car era (1980-present)
CART and USAC united in 1980 under the banner of CRL. The first five races of the season were run under USAC sanction before the union dissolved. The remaining seven races were run under CART sanction.

1980 – Bobby Unser (150) and Johnny Rutherford (200)
1981 – Mike Mosley (150) and Tom Sneva (200)
1982 – Gordon Johncock (150) and Tom Sneva (200)
1983 – Tom Sneva (150)
1984 – Tom Sneva (200)
1985 – Mario Andretti (200)
1986 – Michael Andretti (200)
1987 – Michael Andretti (200)
1988 – Rick Mears (200)
1989 – Rick Mears (200)
1990 – Al Unser Jr. (200)
1991 – Michael Andretti (200)
1992 – Michael Andretti (200)
1993 – Nigel Mansell (200)
1994 – Al Unser Jr. (200)
1995 – Paul Tracy (200)
1996 – Michael Andretti (200)
1997 – Greg Moore (204.6)
1998 – Jimmy Vasser (206.4)
1999 – Paul Tracy (232.2)
2000 – Juan Pablo Montoya (232.2)
2001 – Kenny Brack (232.2)
2002 – Paul Tracy (258)
2003 – Michel Jourdain Jr. (258)
2004 – Ryan Hunter-Reay (258) and Dario Franchitti (225)
2005 – Paul Tracy (228.072) and Sam Hornish Jr. (225)
2006 – Sebastien Bourdais (203.304) and Tony Kanaan (225)
2007 – Tony Kanaan (225)
2008 – Ryan Briscoe (225)
2009 – Scott Dixon (225)

 
Further Resources:
www.indycar.com