"Everyone's a Winner"
"Countdown To 500"
In 1979, the speedway crowned a new champion for the first time in five years. New winner Rick Mears added his likeness to the Borg-Warner trophy in only his second try, and at 27 became the youngest winner since A.J. Foyt captured his first Indy in 1961! Mears' victory capped a great month in which he also spoiled veteran Tom Sneva's attempt to win an unprecedented third consecutive pole.
Presented on this new DVD from "Rare
Sportsfilms" are two great race films, "Everyone's A Winner" plus
"Countdown To 500", for a total of 43 minutes of beautiful full-color
racing action, all on the 1979 race!
You'll see nice closeups of the drivers of the day: Bobby and Al Unser, A.J. Foyt, Danny Ongais, Gordon Johncock, Tom and Jerry Sneva, Tom Bigelow, Billy Vukovich, George Snider, Mike Mosley, Janet Guthrie, Vern Schuppan and many others. Also shown in this video are the cars of Johnny Rutherford, Dick Simon, Steve Krisiloff, Duane Carter, John Mahler and Howdy Holmes. Rare shots of cars that did not make the race, such as those of Todd Gibson, Larry Cannon, Billy Scott, Gary Bettenhausen, Hurley Haywood and Tom Frantz are included. There are interesting scenes of the garage area and nice interviews with veteran mechanics Jud Phillips of Sneva's Sugaripe #1 and Jack Starnes of Foyt's Gilmore #14.
Shown making their qualification attempts are: Ongais, Foyt, Al Unser, Guthrie, and Tom Sneva. The "Gas Man" holds the top position through most of qualifying, but at 4:39 PM Mears is the last man with a chance at the pole and he takes it from Sneva, with a 193.736! For the first time since 1933, there are 35 cars in the starting lineup, as Billy Vukovich and George Snider are shown making the field during a special additional qualifying period. Spins and crashes shown during the month include those of: Spike Gehlhausen, Larry Cannon, Danny Ongais, Todd Gibson, Larry Rice and Billy Engelhart.
Al Unser in the yellow #2 Penzoil Chaparral, starting outside on the front row, takes the lead from Mears on the first lap and pulls away during the early stages of the race. Meanwhile others are shown having problems: Jim McElreath comes in with a burned piston, and Janet Guthrie suffers the same fate after 3 laps. Four laps later, George Snider exits with a burned valve, and after 16 laps, Johnny Parsons is also out. Lee Kunzman blows a scavenger pump, and after 43 laps Wally Dallenbach comes into the pits on only two wheels after losing one! When leader Al Unser comes into the pits smoking, brother Bobby, a Penske teammate of Mears, takes over the lead. Pit action is covered and you'll see Ongais, Mears, Al Unser, Bobby Unser, Schuppan, and Tom Sneva all making stops during the race. A.J. Foyt, who eventually finishes second in the race, stalls in the pits and spends almost a minute before rolling again. With Al out with a broken transmission seal, brother Bobby takes over the lead with Mears second. After fighting an ill-handling car for the entire race, Larry Rice finally crashes in turn two, bringing out the first yellow because of an accident. This year for the first time, the "bunch up" rule is in effect at the track. And, this also is starter Pat Vidan's final race as flagman. On this video he is interviewed, and tells of his decision to retire as well as the "firsts" he has seen at the speedway during his 22 years.
On lap 181 Bobby Unser suddenly slows! He has lost 4th gear and Rick Mears passes him for first place with A.J. second, a lap behind! At about lap 190 the worst crash of the day occurs, as Tom Sneva loses his rear wing in turn three and slaps the wall hard. Just before this, Foyt begins to experience engine trouble. Second behind Mears when the green comes out again with only 5 laps to go, Foyt is slowing down but still comfortably ahead of third place Mosley. Mears takes the checkered flag, but Foyt coasts over the line at about 50 MPH with his engine dead, to a tremendous ovation, by now just ahead of Mike Mosley who then flashes by to take third!
Now you can get these two historic,
action-packed 1979 racing films, both on one DVD (43 minutes long)
for only $29.95 plus $4.00 for tax and shipping.
"RARE SPORTSFILMS N",
1126 Tennyson Lane,
Naperville, IL 60540