|Dan Gurney in a 4-wheel drift in 1967 in his Gurney Eagle
UPDATE "The employees and fans of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach are truly saddened to hear of the passing of racing legend Dan Gurney. As well as being an icon in the world of motorsports, he was one of the founders of the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach, and single handily responsible for providing credibility in the effort to conduct the first modern street race in America in 1975. Dan was also a longtime Association board member and, true to his competitive spirit, won numerous Toyota Pro/Celebrity races on our city streets. We thank his wife, Evi, and the entire Gurney family for sharing Dan with us for all these years. Dan’s phenomenal racing record, indomitable spirit and contributions to our success will not be forgotten."
01/15/18 A statement from Indianapolis Motor Speedway President J. Douglas Boles on the death Sunday, Jan. 14 of legendary American race driver, team owner and car constructor Dan Gurney, who finished three times in the top three during his nine Indianapolis 500 starts from 1962-70. Gurney is one of only three drivers to win races in IndyCar, Formula One, NASCAR Cup and elite sports car competition, along with Mario Andretti and Juan Pablo Montoya.
"When we talk about legendary American drivers, owners and car constructors on an international stage, Dan Gurney is one of the all-time greats. His skill in all three areas helped him make an indelible mark and serve as a huge influence in this sport. Dan was a giant in the racing world, in every sense. Our sincere condolences and prayers are with his wife, Evi, and the entire Gurney family. Godspeed, Dan Gurney."
|Gurney and Foyt winning Lemans in 1967
01/14/18 Famous driver, team owner and constructor Dan Gurney has died at the age of 86 Dan passed away due to complications from pneumonia.
"With one last smile on his handsome face, Dan drove off into the unknown just before noon today, January 14, 2018," Gurney's wife Evi and family said in a statement.
"In deepest sorrow, with gratitude in our hearts for the love and joy you have given us during your time on this earth, we say ‘Godspeed.’"
Born in New York but raised in Southern California, which remained his home for the rest of his life, Gurney was one of the fastest and most versatile drivers in the sport's history having won races in F1 (with a car he built), IndyCar, NASCAR and LeMans.
Gurney was the first driver to ever spray champagne on the podium after an auto race. It's been done ever since.
Gurney, a Long Island native, was responsible for creating the wicker bill still used in race cars as well as the aviation industry. He also was one of the first to start using a full-face helmet.
Gurney was one of the founders of the Championship Auto Racing Teams, which sanctioned open-wheel races from 1979 to 2008.
*Dan passed away due to complications from pneumonia. According to his wishes, the funeral will be private. In lieu of flowers, please consider donations to Hoag Hospital Foundation in Newport Beach, CA.
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Racing legend Mario Andretti offered condolences on his Twitter account.