Jim Rathmann

Jim Rathmann

Birth
Alhambra, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Death 23 Nov 2011 (aged 83)
Melbourne, Brevard County, Florida, USA
Burial Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend
Memorial ID 80947095 · View Source
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Hall of Fame Racing Driver. A seven time winner on the IndyCar circuit, he is remembered for his 1960 win at the Indianapolis 500. Born Royal Richard Rathmann, he was raised in Southern California and got his name when he switched ID cards with his older brother so that he could participate in California's illegal car races. Rathmann moved to Chicago in 1948 to compete in drag racing, started his IndyCar career the next year, and in his early days even drove in three NASCAR events. He won the 500 mile Race of Two Worlds at Monza, Italy, in 1958 and finished second at Indianapolis in 1952, 1957, and 1959 before finally taking top prize in a 1960 Memorial Day classic that featured 14 lead changes as he dueled with Rodger Ward over the last 250 miles. Rathmann officially retired in 1964 and ran a South Florida Cadillac and Chevrolet dealership for many years that became known for supplying Corvettes to the early Astronauts. (Legend has it that the Rathmann logo adorned one of the Moon Rovers). He returned to Indianapolis every year as long as his health permitted, on several occasions driving the pace car. Rathmann was named to the Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 1993 and to the Motorsports Hall of Fame in 2007; at his death in a hospice facility he was the oldest Indianapolis 500 winner.

Bio by: Bob Hufford


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bob Hufford
  • Added: 25 Nov 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 80947095
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Jim Rathmann (16 Jul 1928–23 Nov 2011), Find A Grave Memorial no. 80947095, ; Maintained by Find A Grave Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.