Granatelli, Indy 500-winning car owner, dies at 90
Andy Granatelli, the former CEO of STP motor oil company who
made a mark on motorsports as a car owner, innovator and
entrepreneur, has died. He was 90.
Granatelli’s son, Vince, said his father died Sunday of
congestive heart failure at a Santa Barbara hospital.
Granatelli is a member of the International Motorsports Hall of
Fame, the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America and the Indianapolis
Motor Speedway Hall of Fame.
”Everything he did was bigger than life,” Vince Granatelli
said. ”The thing that gave him the most gratification in his life
was what he did at the Indianapolis 500.”
Granatelli’s cars nearly won at Indianapolis in 1967 and `68
with turbine engines. He broke through in 1969 with Mario Andretti
driving a car with a conventional engine. Granatelli kissing
Andretti on the cheek in Victory Lane is one of the most famous
images in Indy history.
In 1973, Gordon Johncock gave Granatelli another Indy 500
”Andy Granatelli – known appropriately as `Mr. 500′ –
understood better than anyone the spirit and challenge of the
Indianapolis 500 and had a remarkable ability to combine innovative
technologies with talented race car drivers to make his cars a
threat to win at Indianapolis every year,” Indianapolis Motor
Speedway President J. Douglas Boles said in a statement. ”Andy
leaves a legacy of historic moments that will live forever in
Indianapolis 500 lore.”
Granatelli was born in Dallas. He gained fame during World War
II as a promoter of racing events, such as the Hurricane Racing
He is survived by wife Dolly and sons Vince and Anthony.