On This Day

Motor Sport History

Events in Sport

  • 1950-09-04 NASCAR’s first paved super speedway, Darlington Raceway hosts Southern 500, first 500-mile event in NASCAR history; winner Johnny Mantz in a Plymouth
  • 1958-06-01 The Riverside International Raceway in Southern California opens with three 500-mile races in one weekend; Eddie Gray wins the Crown America 500 for NASCAR Grand National cars
  • 1960-11-20 Australian driver Jack Brabham finishes 4th in season-ending US Grand Prix at Riverside Raceway to retain his F1 World Drivers Championship by 9 points from Bruce McLaren of New Zealand

Sports History

1963-11-03 Joe Weatherly finishes 7th in the season ending Golden State 400 at Riverside International Raceway; retains NASCAR Sprint Cup by 2,228 points from 14-time winner Richard Petty

Sports History

1984-10-21 Austrian Ferrari driver Niki Lauda becomes a 3-time Formula 1 World Drivers champion when he finishes 2nd in the season ending Portuguese Grand Prix at Estoril; wins title by just 0.5 from Alain Prost

Sports History

1985-11-03 Bill Elliott wins Atlanta Journal 500 at Atlanta Raceway to become first driver to win 11 super-speedway races in 1 season; also first driver to win $2m in prize money in a single season

  • 2005-04-02 Bubba Stewart becomes first African-American to win a major motor sports event when he takes out the Monster Energy AMA Supercross C'ship event in Irving, Texas

Sports History

2013-12-29 7-time world F1 motor racing champion Michael Schumacher suffers a serious head injury in a ski accident in the French Alps; his condition still remains unclear

  • 2015-08-23 English Indycar driver Justin Wilson suffers a head injury during a race crash at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pennsylvania
  • 2021-11-07 Kyle Larson holds off Martin Truex Jr in the NASCAR Cup Series Championship Race at Phoenix Raceway to earn his 10th win of the season and claim his first Cup Series championship

Birthdays in Sport

  • 1873-09-20 Ferenc Szisz, Hungarian race car driver (winner of the 1st Grand Prix motor racing), born in Szeghalom, Hungary (d. 1944)
  • 1903-06-24 Ernest Leslie Bouts, motor-racing driver
  • 1921-04-09 Jean-Marie Balestre, French president of motor sport's FIA, born in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France (d. 2008)
  • 1928-08-30 Lloyd Casner, American race car driver and owner (Casner Motor Racing Division team), born in Miami, Florida (d. 1965)
  • 1941-08-20 Jo Ramírez, Mexican motor racing team manager and author, born in Mexico City, Mexico
  • 1947-09-18 Giancarlo Minardi, Italian founder and Managing Director of Minardi Formula One team, born in Faenza, Italy
  • 1951-09-18 Marc Surer, Swiss motor racing driver, born in Arisdorf, Switzerland
  • 1952-04-11 Peter Windsor, English motor racing journalist and reporter, born in Reigate, Surrey, England
  • 1952-06-03 David Richards, Welsh motor racing entrepreneur (chairman Prodrive, Motorsport UK, Aston Martin, team principal BAR, Benetton F1 teams; World Rally C'ship 1981), born in Denbighshire, Wales
  • 1963-04-02 Mike Gascoyne, British motor racing engineer, designer, writer (McLaren, Sauber, Tyrrell, Jordan, Renault, Toyota, Force India) and broadcaster (BBC 5 Live, Sky Sports), born in Norwich, England
  • 1966-12-20 Matt Neal, British motor racing driver, born in Stourbridge, United Kingdom
  • 1969-05-14 Sabine Schmitz, German professional motor racing driver, and television personality (Top Gear), born in n Adenau, West Germany (d. 2021)

Deaths in Sport

  • 1927-03-03 J.G. Parry-Thomas, Welsh motor-racing driver (b. 1884)
  • 1944-02-21 Ferenc Szisz, Hungarian race car driver (winner of the 1st Grand Prix motor racing), dies at 70
  • 1965-04-10 Lloyd Casner, American race car driver and owner (Casner Motor Racing Division team), dies at 36
  • 1996-08-15 Ernest Leslie Bouts, motor-racing driver, dies at 93
  • 1996-11-19 Denis Jenkinson, British motor racing journalist, dies at 74
  • 2008-03-27 Jean-Marie Balestre, French president of motor sport's FIA, dies at 86
  • 2021-03-16 Sabine Schmitz, German professional motor racing driver, and television personality (Top Gear), dies of cancer at 51

Famous Racing Car Drivers