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Al Unser and Barrett-Jackson


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#1 David M. Kane

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 14:50

I had a nice sitdown chat with Al Unser and his lovely wife last night at Barrett-Jackson. We mostly talked about his road racing and his BRM F1 offer. He said he simply didn't want to live in Europe, particular since he knew what he had in the States.

Any recollections?

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#2 mariner

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 17:10

I had the good fortune to met Al Unser last autumn/fall whilst visiting Albuquerque. I didn't even know about the Unser Museum until I was looking in the Yellow Pages in the hotel.

It is a superb museum with all the exhibits beautifully restored and covering sprint cars, Indy and Pikes Peak.

We got to the museum just about 30 minutes before closing so they gave us a reduced price , the staff are that nice.

Whilst studying the indy engine dispay which ranges from Offy's to Cosworth's a stocky guy in a windcheater came up to talk, he then mentioned he was Al Unser!

He spent some time going throught the Offy at Indy story with me despite it being closing time.

When I mentioned that I had been ( from England) to the Knoxville Nationals he talked about Sprint cars as well.

A true gentleman and a really good museum.

#3 Tmeranda

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 21:41

I've known Al since the early 80's when the company I worked for sponsored his Indy winning car. He really is one of the all time good guys in motor racing. In spite of his many victories he just a really down to earth guy. What you see is what you get - no over grown ego here. If he has the time he will talk about racing with you for hours. One of my favorite memory of Al was when I made a business call on Parnelli Jones at his office in Californai I saw Al helping Parnelli's secretary stuff advertisments into envolopes for a mass mailing. He said he was supposed to be there testing one of their cars, but the test had been rescheduled so he was looking for some other way to be useful!!!

#4 David M. Kane

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 00:36

His wife Susan is a real sweetheart too,

#5 RA Historian

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 13:07

Originally posted by David M. Kane
His wife Susan

Just out of curiosity, which number is Susan?

#6 David M. Kane

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 14:37

I think #2...but that is a guess.

#7 JacnGille

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 16:11

Originally posted by Tmeranda
In spite of his many victories he just a really down to earth guy. What you see is what you get - no over grown ego here.


Just the opposite of his brother Bobby.

#8 RA Historian

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 01:25

Originally posted by David M. Kane
I think #2...but that is a guess.

At least number three, maybe four, according to press room banter over the years. The same scuttlebutt has Bobby on number six. Don't know the truth of either of those.

#9 David M. Kane

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Posted 24 January 2007 - 14:22

RA Historian:

I can't help you there other than backing you up on Bobby. I know he's on at least #3. Which one are you on?

#10 RA Historian

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Posted 25 January 2007 - 00:31

Originally posted by David M. Kane
Which one are you on?

If you are talking about me personally, still number one.

#11 vivafroilan!

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Posted 25 January 2007 - 19:27

Almost 40 years ago (yikes!) my mother and I were waiting to sign me in at the orthodontist’s office, and realized that the guy in front of us talking to the receptionist was Al Unser. When he finished we politely accosted him, asking for an autograph, etc., and he (as Don Garlits had done in a shopping mall a few months earlier) stopped and talked with us for several minutes, completely unhurried, a perfect friendly gentleman treating just some kid and his mom with probably the same sort of respect he’d use with a VIP, and you could tell that came natural to him.
In the chair some minutes later I hardly noticed the doc torquing down on my braces as I sat thinking how cool it was that someone could race in the Indy 500, yet be fully in the moment when taking his kid to the orthodontist as well… Anyway, he’s always seemed like one of the good guys to me.