I just found out that it was very small number of drivers who drove in three, very well known years ago, races in the U.S.
The Daytona stock car race, the Indianapolis 500 and the Anderson Little 500.
The small list is:
The first two did not race in the Daytona 500 but did race on the beach course at Daytona.
Of drivers still competing as far as I know only Smoke, and Montoya (I think if Montoya drove at Anderson he would be unique as he drove F-1) could be added to that list if they drove a race at Anderson.
How things have changed from the glory years.
It's an interesting tidbit, but a bit deceptive.
Holland only drove at Daytona and the Little 500 because he was suspended from AAA racing [EDIT: Corrected below. Holland raced in the Little 500 several years after his suspension ended]. Fillip's drives came after his Daytona and Indy forays and were mainly to help sell equipment developed by his brother.
Several more drivers raced in the Little 500 on their way up to AAA or USAC Championship racing, but, obviously the switch to rear engined cars explains that end. Figure in series expanding the number of races in a season, leading to drivers not having to jump back and forth between types of cars to make a living and having fewer "off weeks" + sponsorship for a specific series also are major factors.
Add in sanctioning bodies that often fined or suspended drivers running unsanctioned events and it's understandable why there weren't more. In a way, it's surprising even that many managed all three, what with AAA, USAC and NASCAR being quite dictatorial as to where drivers could race. The "glory days" were a short blip of time created after a judge warned sanctioning bodies of action against them if they didn't co-operate. The role manufacturers (auto, tires, etc.) played in taking their contract drivers from series to series shouldn't be overlooked as a major factor as well. Changes, yes, but probably for different reasons than many believe.
None of this takes away from the Little 500 being the event it is. Obviously, the backers of Jeff Gordon and Tony Stewart didn't considered the Little 500 important enough to have them race in it to add to their very carefully arranged resumes. Then again, it wasn't being televised, so that explains that. Never mind...
And big to Eric Gordon. He did things his own way, without help. Sadly, it's why he never got past USAC/Little 500 level, but at least he has his soul
Edited by Jim Thurman, 22 January 2014 - 07:39.