Wednesday, May 29, 2024

1965 – King, Taylor Win Little 500

Chuck Taylor (standing in cockpit of car) and Bob King (in dark jacket and cap) combined talents to win the 17th annual Little 500 at Sun Valley Speedway. – Jack Burgess Photo

Anderson, Ind. (May 29, 1965) – Former champion Bob King of Muncie, Ind., and rookie driver Chuck Taylor of East Alton, Ill., combined their talents to drive the Nagel-Taylor Chevy machine to victory in the 17th annual Little 500 national championship sprint car race at Sun Valley Speedway on Saturday night.

A record-breaking crowd of 14,100 spectators watch the duo complete the race in 2 hours, 29 minutes, and 22.17 seconds.

Although Taylor qualified the car, King was at the wheel when the green flag dropped, and the 1953 winner of the 500-lap endurance race drove the first 300 circuits before Taylor took over in relief.

Starting 29th in the 33-car field, King worked his way brilliantly through traffic to take the lead away from Rollie Beale of Toledo, Ohio, on the 181st turn of Joe Helpling’s quarter-mile, high-banked asphalt layout.

From that point on, the race, sanctioned by the International Motor Contest Association, in its Golden Anniversary year in the sport of speed, saw no other leader as King gradually increased his margin over the field and ate up the $5 per lap in prize money.

When King pitted on lap 301, Taylor stepped into the cockpit as relief driver, the Illinois-owned machine had a five-lap advantage over the field – which Taylor increased to seven laps when the checkered flag waved.

Leading a total of 320 of the 500 laps, the #35 Nagel-Taylor machine pulled down a payoff of a record-breaking purse of $12,510.

Although seven separate accidents brought the yellow out for a total of 72 laps, no one was injured.

Leon Wieske of St. Clair Shores, Mich., driving his own #51 Wieske Chevy, charged from his middle of the front row starting position at the drop of the green to take the early lead.

Dean Mast of Dover, Ohio, in the #64 Howell Transportation Chevy, led the race for one lap – the seventh – but Wieske was back on top after eight turns of the oval.

On lap 31, Dick Good of Mishawaka, Ohio, the defending champion, sent his #15 Wood Chevy into the lead and he maintained the top spot until he was passed by Wieske on lap 41.

Three turns later, Wieske lost a wheel in the east turn and crashed into the guardrail and was retired for the evening. Good regained the top spot at this point but held it for one-half mile before Norm Brown of Grand Rapids, Mich., driving the #11 J&D Motor Sales Chevy, to the front.

Brown paced the field until lap 140, at which time Beale again became the top dog. The Ohioan then led the race until King took over for good on lap 181.

Results –

1. Bob King/Chuck Taylor
2. Rollie Beale, Toledo, Ohio
3. Benny Rapp, Toledo, Ohio
4. Jim Moughan, Springfield, Ill.
5. Karl Busson, Toledo, Ohio
6. Jerry Weld, Kansas City
7. Tom Bigelow, Whitewater, Wis.
8. Oscar Fay, South Bend, Ind.
9. Jay Woodside, Kansas City
10.Ray Duckworth, Anderson, Ind.
11.Nolan Johncock, Hastings, Mich.
12.Dean Mast, Dover, Ohio
13.Dick Good, Mishawaka, Ohio
14.Darl Harrison, Tiffin, Ohio
15.Gordon Woolley, Waco, Tex.
16.Bob Coulter, Lakewood, Calif.
17.Casey Jones, South Bend, Ind.
18.Buzz Gregory, Indianapolis
19.Bob Davis, Dayton, Ohio
20.Gene Ingold, Parkersburg, W.Va.
21.Bill Puterbaugh, Roxana, Ill.
22.Norm Brown, Grand Rapids, Mich.
23.Jack Thomas, Wellsville, N.Y.
24.Ray Wright, Elkhart, Ind.
25.Charley Masters, Waddy, Ky.

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