Saturday, September 27, 2008

Remembering PLN

Around the interwebs with the best memories of a racing legend and American badass.

Newman a lot of things, but for many years, racing came first

In recent years, Newman's relationship with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway was antagonistic; when the Speedway changed its catering rules in 1995 to allow only IMS-approved suppliers, Newman flaunted authority (and was later fined) by having his team chefs prepare food for the Newman/Haas crew, which he personally carted into the garage area.

(John Oreovicz

Love for winning fueled Newman's passion on the racetrack

Two-time Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson said Newman even drove a Hendrick Motorsports car."We had a deal when Rick [Hendrick] would put a restrictor-plate on a car and let a few people drive it with half horsepower," Johnson said. "Paul was amazing. He would get out there on stickier tires and run really quick laps."


Paul Newman, Racer, Remembered

During the 1970s Newman earned four SCCA national titles. In 1976 he took the D-Production class championship in a Triumph TR-6 once owned by racer Bob Tullius. In 1979 he took the C-Production class in a Bob Sharp Datsun 280ZX, and in 1985 and 1986 he won the GT-1 in a Sharp Nissan 300ZX. In 1979 Newman co-drove a Porsche 935 with team owner Dick Barbour and Rolf Stommelen to second place in the 24 Hours of LeMans. Most recently he was the co-owner of IndyCar team Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing (NHLR). Drivers for NHLR have included Mario Andretti, Michael Andretti, Nigel Mansell, Paul Tracy, Cristiano da Matta, and S├ębastien Bourdais


Racing Enthusiast, Actor, Badass, Paul Newman Dies at 83

Unlike many of the coddled stars in Hollywood today, Paul Newman was a badass long before making it big on the silver screen. He was a regular old military guy who joined the Navy and served in WWII after getting kicked out of Ohio University for "unruly behavior."

(Enrico Campitelli

LEARY: Somebody Up There Likes Him

I had the privilege of photographing him many ti
mes over the last three decades and had the honor of presenting him with portfolios of my images and a copy of a Super 8 movie I took of him at Nelson Ledges in 1976, racing his Datsun 510 and Triumph TR6. I kidded him that it was the cheapest movie he ever made…less than twenty bucks including processing…but he made me feel like I had given him a gift of pure gold and wrote me a nice thank you letter.


Fox Sports has a PLN racing photo gallery up. Here's a sample:

Our favorite PLN memory comes from the SCCA Runoffs. The exact year escapes us, maybe 1999 or 2000, but PLN was there with his ex-Trans Am GT1 mount. He was just a regular racer, doing his thing that week. His thing just happened to be a lot faster than that of most people. RIP.

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