Eddie Sachs is interviewed in victory lane after winning the USAC stock car 200-miler.
West Allis, Wis. (July 16, 1961) - It didn't take veteran driver Eddie Sachs, Coopersburg, Penn., long to get the knack of driving new model stock cars.Sachs, driving in only his second stock car race, won the national championship 200-mile event at State Fair Park here Sunday, for his first Milwaukee victory.
The 1961 Indianapolis 500 runner-up took the lead on the 119th lap and led the rest of the way in his 1961 Ford: His teammate, Dick Rathmann, Roselle, Ill., finished second, also with a 1961 Ford.
Sachs averaged 87.37 miles an hour in winning $4,533 as his share of a $23,210 purse.
Norm Nelson, Racine, Wis., defending national stock car champion, finished third and was followed to the finish by Elmer Musgrave, Niles, Ill., and Whitey Gerken, Chicago. Nelson and Musgrave drove 1961 Fords and Gerken a 1961 Chevrolet.
Rodger Ward of Indianapolis, winner of the 1959 Indianapolis 500, narrowly escaped serious injury on the 55th lap of the race when the drive shaft of another car dropped to the pavement and bounced through the windshield of Ward's car. It landed just a foot away from the driver. Ward left the race five laps later after going into a spin.
Minor accidents and rain cut down the winners’ time with 35 of the 200 laps run at reduced speeds under the caution flag.
1. Eddie Sachs
2. Dick Rathmann
3. Norm Nelson
4. Elmer Musgrave
5. Whitey Gerken
6. Bill Cheesbourg
7. Gil Michaels
8. Bill Lutz
9. Sal Tovella