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Andy Granatelli

ANDY GRANATELLI gained considerable notoriety for his innovative approach to motorsports in the 1960s. Already the owner of numerous Indianapolis 500 race cars that ran from 1946 through 1954, including Jim Rathmann’s second-place finisher in 1952, he returned after a seven-year hiatus in 1961, having acquired the Novi race cars from Lew Welch. The Novis were updated and three qualified for each of the 1963 and 1964 Indianapolis 500 races. No sooner was Granatelli named president of the STP Corporation in 1963 than he began investing heavily in the sport as a sponsor. Mario Andretti (1969) and Gordon Johncock (1973) both won the Indianapolis 500 under STP sponsorship, while Parnelli Jones (1967) and Joe Leonard (1968) each came within a handful of laps of winning with controversial Granatelli-entered turbine-powered cars. Other outstanding drivers he retained or sponsored included Jim Clark, Graham Hill, Al Unser, Bobby Unser, Dan Gurney, Jochen Rindt, Jimmy McElreath, Pat Flaherty, Jim Hurtubise, and Freddie Agabashian.