Art Pollard Racing in 1966
Some Stats are from Motorsport.com
Photo courtesy of Mike Pollard
May 30, 1966 – On May 2nd, Art became the first driver of 1966 to pass his rookie test under the watchful eyes of veteran racer Roger Ward and is shown above sitting in the Jim Robbin’s AUTOTRON car #66 in Rolla Vollstedt’s front yard.
Photo courtesy of Mike Pollard
Art Pollard’s 4 lap average for his first Indy 500 was 157.985 Art’s first attempt at the famed brickyard is cut short after his #44 Vollstedt/Offy was bumped from the field by Ronnie Duman. Driver Chuck Rodee was killed while attempting to qualify a Watson-Ford. Rookie Graham Hill won the Indy 500.
Photo courtesy of Jerry Burcham
June 6, 1966 – One week later, at Milwaukee, Art started 7th and finished 4th in a Gerhardt-Offy to claim his share of $2697.00 in prize money! The race was won by Mario Andretti.
June 12, 1966 – At Langhorne, Art started 17th in the Gerhardt-Offy but spun early and was credited with 22nd and last position. Mario was again the victor.
June 26, 1966 – Art started the Gerhardt-Offy 5th but finished 22nd again after a fire during a pit stop.
July 24, 1966 – At the road course at Indianapolis Raceway Park, Art and the Gerhardt-Offy were too slow to even qualify.
August 7, 1966 – Back at Langhorne again. This time around, Art started in the 15th spot, only to finish in 23rd due to a broken suspension on the Gerhardt-Offy. However… It was not last place this time at Langhorne, that posistion went to Lloyd Ruby in a Lotus. The race was won by Roger McCluskey.
Post card courtesy of Mike Pollard
August 27, 1966 – Back at what had to be one of his favorites, the Milwaukee Mile. Art started 6th and finished 7th in the #76 Pure Firebird Gerhardt-Offy which was owned by Jim Rathmann and astronauts Grissom and Cooper. This brought in $1601.00 in prize money. Mario again won the event.
October 9, 1966 – Fuji, Japan. Art failed to qualify for this non-points paying road course race across the Pacific. The race was won by Jackie Stewart. Art was not the only notable that did not start due to mechanical woes. Others included:
October 23, 1966 – In a 100 mile dirt champ car race in Sacramento, California. Art started the Collins Vollstedt/Offy #31 in the 14th spot and finished in the 9th position to earn 40 championship points and $611.00 in prize money. Dick Atkins was the winner.
November 20, 1966 – Phoenix, Arizona saw Art start 12th and complete only 16 laps before the engine blew in the #76 Pure Firebird sponsored Gerhardt-Offy. Art was awarded only $122.00 for his 22nd place finish. Again, Mario won the race. Art Pollard wound up in 23rd spot of the final National Championship season.
July 1, 1967 – Rain and a rock were the stories at Mosport in the twin 100 races this day. The first race was completed with Art finishing 9th after starting 16th. In the second heat race of the day, Art was hit in the head by a flying rock and forced to retire after only 3 laps. The race was forced to a halt by rain 3 laps later.
October 22, 1967 – 154.816 mph was fast enough to earn Art Pollard his first Champ Car pole position! This took place at Hanford, California. Art led the first through the 108th lap. He finished 5th, 1 lap down.
November 19, 1967 – Art started 10th and finished 14th at Phoenix.
November 26, 1967 – 30 cars started the first ever Champ Car race at the Riverside International Raceway in California. Unfortunately, Art’s Gerhardt-Offy dropped a valve after only 5 laps and he was credited with the 30th and last place finish at the famed road course. The race was won by Dan Gurney.
1966 – Art’s first ride at Indy in a Vollstedt/Offy formerly driven by Len Sutton
Pollard Family Collection
1966 Video Gallery
1. Robin Miller’s 2016 Christmas Gifts Suggestions including Art Pollard: The Life and Legacy of a Gentleman Racer by Bob Kehoe
2. 1966 Indy 500, The Classics (Art was there but DNQ)
3. 1966 Indy 500 (Art was there but DNQ)