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Gary Congdon


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#1 Ralliart

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Posted 10 January 2003 - 04:29

I'm wondering if anyone remembers Gary Congdon who was killed in 1967 at Terre Haute in a midget race. Wondering because, as a freshman in high school in California, the BMOC was a senior, Jeff Congdon, his brother. Jeff was an outstanding football and basketball player so it wasn't suprising to learn that his older (presumably) brother was also a great athlete - only in cars. Was Gary Congdon strictly a midget racer or did he race in other classes? Was he young? Old (maybe Jeff's father?).

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#2 theunions

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Posted 10 January 2003 - 04:41

He was one of those in the opening lap crash of the '66 500 and DNQ'ed the following year.

He and fellow USAC Champ Car/midget driver Russ Congdon were not related.

#3 Jim Thurman

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Posted 14 January 2003 - 21:22

Originally posted by Ralliart
I'm wondering if anyone remembers Gary Congdon who was killed in 1967 at Terre Haute in a midget race. Wondering because, as a freshman in high school in California, the BMOC was a senior, Jeff Congdon, his brother. Jeff was an outstanding football and basketball player so it wasn't suprising to learn that his older (presumably) brother was also a great athlete - only in cars. Was Gary Congdon strictly a midget racer or did he race in other classes? Was he young? Old (maybe Jeff's father?).


Though I was pretty young at the time, I remember Gary Congdon.

He raced Champ Cars. I recalled one Langhorne race where he qualified very well. I had to check Phil Harms' Champ Car stats and found he qualified 3rd and 4th at Langhorne in 1966. Made 29 starts from 1965 through 1967, with a career best finish of 4th.

He also made a few USAC Stock Car starts.

Earlier in his career, he ran CRA Sprint Cars and won a race at Ascot.

I believe he was 30 when the accident happened at Terre Haute. A nasty accident that a full roll cage would have prevented.


Jim Thurman

#4 WGD706

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Posted 14 January 2003 - 22:01

Gary Congdon
Birth: Feb. 18, 1937 Palermo,Butte County,California
Death: Sep. 24, 1967 Terre Haute,Vigo County,Indiana
Burial:Hillside Cemetery,Whitewater,Walworth County,Wisconsin

Following the completion of the 1935 racing season in Milwaukee, local midget competitors got together and formed an organization that was to become known in later years as the Badger Midget Auto Racing Association.
Gary Congdon, who flipped his Tassi Vatis racer over the nose of Don Bransons car during the first lap accident at Indianapolis in 1966, was a former Badger competitor. Gary drove the Ernie Fredrickson Novi styled roadster with great success in Badger competition before moving into championship car racing. Unfortunately, Congdon was fatally injured on September 24th 1967 during the running of the "Autumn 50" in Terre Haute, Indiana.

http://www.bmara.com/history.htm

#5 Jim Thurman

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Posted 26 January 2003 - 22:49

A correction here...

I wrote that Gary Congdon won a CRA race at Ascot Park...

No. His win in CRA came at Manzanita Park, Phoenix, Arizona.

Warren, thanks for the info on Gary Congdon. Wow, Palermo, California is a small place (and out of the way).

SSDI info indicates Gary Congdon's card was issued in Wisconsin...and the racing with BMARA before re-locating to Garden Grove, California would back that up. I don't know whether his family moved back to Wisconsin or he had relatives there, but there obviously were ties to Wisconsin.


Jim Thurman