Indy 500 : Bumped, Rutherford Bumps Back

Associated Press

Three-time winner Johnny Rutherford led a quartet of drivers who bumped their way into the 69th Indianapolis 500 Sunday, completing the fastest starting lineup in auto racing history.

Rutherford, who qualified for his 21st Indy start, was one of three veterans who came back to get into the lineup after being bumped themselves. He finished his four-lap qualification run with an average at 208.254 m.p.h. in a Cosworth-powered March during the final hour of time trials.

He joined Kevin Cogan and Ireland's Derek Daly, both of whom qualified March-Cosworths earlier in the day, and Indy rookie Rich Vogler, who followed Rutherford's run in another March-Cosworth. Daly was clocked at 207.548, Cogan at 206.368 and Vogler at 205.653.

The foursome raised the average for the 33-car field to a record 208.138 m.p.h. That breaks both the year-old Indianapolis mark of 203.686 and the all-time racing record of 204.669 set last September by a 24-car field at Michigan International Speedway.

Rutherford, a 47-year-old Texan, won $17,500 as the fastest of the last day's qualifiers.

Daly's qualifying run bumped Rutherford's first-weekend speed of 204.495, and Rutherford, in turn, bumped Indy rookie Michael Roe of Ireland. Roe had a first-week speed of 204.507.

Roe blew an engine in his backup car earlier in the day. He did get two more chances to make it back into the lineup in the final 15 minutes. But, with a rebuilt engine, he only managed two laps at just over 201 on one attempt and was still too slow at 202.686 after completing four laps on his final attempt--the last of the day.

That left Tony Bettenhausen, who qualified on Saturday, as the slowest driver in this year's field at 204.824.

Cogan, whose original qualification run of 203.793 m.p.h. had been knocked from the field on Saturday, bumped Steve Chassey's 204.224.

Vogler bumped Pete Halsmer, who was in Charlotte, N.C., for a sports car endurance race on Sunday. Halsmer had qualified on the first weekend at 204.634 m.p.h.

Tom Bigelow made two attempts Sunday but failed to complete a lap.

Jerry Karl, a veteran of six Indy 500s but without a start here since 1981, crashed Sunday while trying to find more speed in a 1982 March. He escaped injury and later moved into a 1983 March.



6 Pancho Carter (Brownsburg, Ind.), March-Buick 212.583

37 Scott Brayton (Coldwater, Mich.), March-Buick 212.354

10 Bobby Rahal (Dublin, Ohio), March-Cosworth 211.818


3 Mario Andretti (Nazareth, Pa.), Lola-Cosworth 211.576

40 Emerson Fittipaldi (Brazil), March-Cosworth 211.322

20 Don Whittington (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), March-Cosworth 210.991


11 Al Unser Sr. (Albuquerque, N.M.), March-Cosworth 210.523

5 Danny Sullivan (Louisville), March-Cosworth 210.298

7 Geoff Brabham (San Clemente), March Cosworth 210.074


1 Rick Mears (Bakersfield), March-Cosworth 209.796

30 Al Unser Jr. (Albuquerque, N.M.), Lola-Cosworth 209.215

12 Bill Whittington (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), Lola-Cosworth 209.006


2 Tom Sneva (Paradise Valley, Ariz.), Eagle-Cosworth 208.927

22 Dick Simon (San Juan Capistrano), March-Cosworth 208.536

99 Michael Andretti (Nazareth, Pa.), March-Cosworth 208.185


9 Roberto Guerrero (Colombia), March-Cosworth 208.062

5 Danny Ongais (Santa Ana), March-Cosworth 207.220

55 Josele Garza (Mexico), March-Cosworth 206.677


33 Howdy Holmes (Ann Arbor, Mich.) 206.372

61 *Arie Luyendyk (Netherlands), Lotus-Cosworth 206.004

14 A.J. Foyt (Houston), March-Cosworth 205.782


98 *Ed Pimm (Dublin, Ohio), Eagle-Cosworth 205.724

23 *Raul Boesel (Brazil), March-Cosworth 206.498

43 *John Paul Jr. (W. Palm Beach, Fla.), March-Cosworth 206.340


84 Chip Ganassi (Pittsburgh), March-Cosworth 206.104

76 Johnny Parsons (Brownsburg, Ind.), March-Cosworth 205.778

34 *Jim Crawford (Scotland), Lola-Cosworth 205.525


44 George Snider (Bakersfield), March-Chevy 205.455

97 Tony Bettenhausen (Indianapolis), Lola-Cosworth 204.824

4 Johnny Rutherford (Fort Worth), March-Cosworth 208.254


48 Derek Daly (Ireland), Lola-Cosworth 207.548

18 Kevin Cogan (Redondo Beach), March-Cosworth 206.368

60 *Rich Vogler (Indianapolis), March-Cosworth 205.653

*Rookie driver

Average speed of field: 208.138 m.p.h.

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