"Partners at 200"
"Partners at 200" and "May Magic" are two vintage films on the 1980 Indianapolis 500, and both are included in beautiful COLOR on a new 55-minute DVD from Rare Sportsfilms! "Partners at 200", produced by Championship Racefilms for Goodyear, has the best overall race coverage and an emphasis on the A.J. Foyt-Jim Gilmore racing team. "May Magic" by Car & Track Productions shows the race with different views of the crashes, pre-race color and driver interviews. Even as they both show the 1980 500-mile race, each film shows completely different footage of the race and the story of the month of May leading up to the spectacular classic on Memorial Day!
The DVD begins with "Partners at 200", which takes you behind the scenes with the Foyt-Gilmore racing partnership, with both Foyt and Gilmore explaining how it all came about and why it has been successful. Other Indy racing partnerships have been successful too, such as two-time winner Johnny Rutherford with Jim Hall and chief mechanic Steve Robey. There's a bumper crop of rookies this year with Tim Richmond being the fastest from the get-go - until he crashes his #21 in practice on the first day of qualifications. He later qualifies a twin car and finishes the race in ninth place, earning "Rookie of The Year" honors. Included in both films are different tributes to pace-car driver and 1950 winner Johnnie Parsons. In this film he is shown driving the #1 Wynn's Friction Proofing Special once again around the track commemorating his win of 50 years ago! Shown qualifying in this film are Bobby Unser, Rick Mears, Roger Rager and eventually Johnny Rutherford, who knocks Mario Andretti off the pole with a 192.256! With less than a minute before 6PM, Foyt takes to the track and qualifies his #14 Gilmore racing to place himself 12th on the starting grid. Shown the last qualifying day is the spin by Rick Muther and the successful attempt by George Snider. Also shown are spins and crashes from the month of May, including those of rookie Tony Bettenhausen, Gordon Johncock, and by some who did not make the race, such as Dana Carter and Roger Mears. A first week 184+ qualifying effort by Janet Guthrie is waved off. Later, rain and hail prevent another attempt, and Janet misses her first race since coming to the speedway. A practice crash by Tom Sneva in his qualified car relegates him to starting last in the field on race day.
Bobby Unser crosses the starting line first to start the race, but Rutherford passes him in the first turn and immediately takes the lead. On the 10th lap, rookies Dick Ferguson and Bill Whittington crash between turns 1 & 2, and Roger Rager takes over the lead as the leaders all duck into the pits. Pancho Carter leads laps 36-39 before being passed by Rutherford. Later, with Andretti leading at 55 laps, Jim McElreath and Roger Rager crash between turns one and two. One by one, contenders drop out, Johnny Parsons with a burned piston, Al Unser a bad cylinder and Mario Andretti blows his engine. On lap 130 Jerry Sneva hits the wall in turn 1. Later, Rutherford again takes the lead for the sixth time, passing Tom Sneva. Foyt retires with a bad valve and teammate George Snider is out four laps earlier with a sick engine. After that, the race is all Rutherford's and he cruises to his third Indy victory in seven years! There are great shots of Rutherford in Victory Lane as well as postrace shots of happy drivers Gordon Johncock (finished 4th driving with his foot in a cast), defending champion Rick Mears finished 5th, Gary Bettenhausen, who started next to last and finished third, and to top it off, last place starter Tom Sneva who finished 2nd to Rutherford, the first time that had ever happened!
Narrated by Dave Despain, "May Magic" also covers the month of May at Indy and the 500, plus includes nice interviews with drivers Tom and Jerry Sneva, Johnny Rutherford, Gordon Smiley, Gordon Johncock, Spike Gehlhausen and rookie Roger Rager. In this film while driving the pace car, Johnnie Parsons tells Despain about an accident he once had at the track during his racing days. Here, second weekend qualifying is shown - rookies Tim Richmond and Gordon Smiley. Also shown on this film is the Miller Pit Stop Championship, involving the crews of drivers Phil Caliva, John Mahler, Johnny Parsons, Jr, Jerry Sneva, Herm Johnson. In the finals, it's Tom Bigelow vs Greg Leffler for the Championship, with the AMI crew of Bigelow coming out on top! More close ups of drivers Andretti and Foyt as well as shots of the cars of Tom Sneva, Gordon Smiley, Jim McElreath, Jerry Karl, Billy Engelhart and Gordon Johncock. Pit action during the race shows stops by Foyt, Richmond, Tom Sneva and Tom Bigelow. In addition, all crashes shown in the first film are shown again from different cameras in this presentation by Car and Track. Any serious Indy fan will want to add this DVD to his collection!
To get your own 55-minute DVD containing both of these historic films, send only $29.95 plus $4.00 shipping. (Illinois residents must add $2.25 state sales tax).
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