1986 CART PPG Indy Car World Series season was the 8th national championship season of American open wheel racing sanctioned by CART. The season consisted of 17 races, and one non-points exhibition event. Bobby Rahal was the national champion, and the rookie of the year was Chip Robinson. The 1986 Indianapolis 500 was sanctioned by USAC, but counted towards the CART points championship. Bobby Rahal won the Indy 500, and would later become the first driver since 1980 to win Indy and the CART championship in the same season.
The first two races of the season were won by
Kevin Cogan ( Phoenix) and Michael Andretti ( Long Beach), respectfully, the first career wins for both drivers on the CART circuit. Rain delayed the Indianapolis 500, postponing it for six days. Bobby Rahal, driving for Truesports, passed Kevin Cogan with two laps to go, and won for car owner Jim Trueman, who was stricken with cancer. Trueman died less than two weeks later.
The season would shape up as a two-man battle between Rahal and Michael Andretti. Andretti won at
Milwaukee, which put him in the points lead for the first time. On Father's Day, Andretti was leading on the final lap at Portland. His car ran out of fuel on the final turn of the final lap, and his father Mario beat him to the finish line by 0.07 seconds. It would go down in lore as one of the most shocking finishes in Indy car history, as well as the closest finish in Indy car history on a road course (until 1997).
Rahal was back in victory lane in July, winning the inaugural
Molson Indy Toronto, but Michael Andretti still held the points lead. Rahal won four out of five races during a stretch in August and September, and emerged with a 9-point lead in the standings with two races left. Michael Andretti won a key victory at the second-to-last race of the season at Phoenix, while Rahal finished 3rd.
Going into the season finale at
Tamiami Park, Rahal held a scant 3-point lead over Andretti. Neither driver was a factor at Miami, and just past the halfway point, Andretti dropped out with a broken halfshaft. Rahal effectively clinched the championship when Andretti dropped out. Roberto Guerrero won the pole and dominated the race, leading the first 111 laps. But on the final lap, his car sputtered and he ran out of fuel. Al Unser, Jr. slipped by to steal the victory, his lone win of 1986.
Drivers and Teams [ edit ]
The following teams and
drivers competed in the 1986 Indy Car World Series season. All cars used Goodyear tires.
Cosworth TC 2 (5)
True Value/Emerson DNS Due to engine at Long Beach
Cosworth TC 33
Ed Pimm Daly at Mid-Ohio, Sanair and Elkhart Lake, not entered at Toronto, and Pimm at all other events.
Dick Simon Racing
Cosworth TC 22
Dick Simon Simon at Indianapolis, Cleveland, Pocono and Sanair, Robinson at Meadowlands, Cleveland and Miami, and Ashley at Toronto, Mid-Ohio and Elkhart Lake
Lola T8600/ March 86C
Cosworth TC/ Honda 8
Valvoline Spirit March 86C at Phoenix 1, Honda at 8 events
Cosworth TC 9
Valvoline Spirit/Five Star Marketing Carter at Sanair, Moreno at all other races after Indianapolis
Pancho Carter Five Star Marketing
Coors Light Indianapolis, Michigan 1 and Pocono only
Cosworth TC/ Buick 71
Living Well/ Hardee's/ SPA*erobics/ Driesbach Hardee's and Buick at Indianapolis only, Brayton at Phoenix 1, Indianapolis, Michigan 1, Pocono and Michigan 2, Villeneuve at all other events.
Living Well/ SPA*erobics/ Labatt/ Canadian Tire/ Val-Pak
Living Well/ Hemelgarn Indianapolis only
Cosworth TC 18
Leader Cards Racing
Cosworth TC 24
Leader Card Betenhausen on ovals, Dobson on road and street courses
March 85C 42
Phil Krueger Squirt/Moran
Machinists Union Racing
Cosworth TC 55
Josele Garza Schaefer/
Machinists Union Parsons at Sanair, Michigan 2, and Phoenix 2, Wilson at Elkhart Lake and Laguna Seca, Garza at all other races
Machinists Union Ganassi at Phoenix 1 and Indianapolis, Parsons at Milwaukee, Cleveland, Michigan 1 and Pocono and Wilson at Mid-Ohio
Chip Ganassi Bryant/Schaefer/
Johnny Parsons Schaefer/
Pizza Hut/ Machinists Union Indianapolis Only
Alex Morales Racing
Cosworth TC 6
Byrd's Kentucky Fried Chicken Indianapolis Only
Cosworth TC 5 (2)
Hanna Car Wash
Cosworth TC 7
March 86C/ PC-15
Cosworth TC/ Chevy A 1/ 86 (4)
Pennzoil Z-7 #86 at Phoenix 1, PC-15 at 4 events, Chevy A at 8 events
Miller American PC-15/Chevy A at Miami only, March 86C/Cosworth TC at all other events
Chevy A 11
Hertz Phoenix 1, Indianapolis, Michigan 1, Pocono and Miami only. PC-15 at Phoenix 1 and Indianapolis, March 86C at Michigan 1, Pocono and Miami
Doug Shierson Racing
Cosworth TC 30
Al Unser, Jr.
Cosworth TC 3
A. J. Foyt Enterprises
Cosworth TC 14
A. J. Foyt
Copenhagen-Gilmore Phoenix 1, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Michigan 1, Pocono, Michigan 2, Phoenix 2 and Miami only
Chevy V6 44
Mike Nish Indianapolis only, DNQ
Cosworth TC 84
George Snider Calumet Farms/ Gilmore/
Copenhagen Snider at Indianapolis and Michigan 1, Swindell at Pocono
Sammy Swindell Gilmore/
March 86C/ March 85C
Cosworth TC 12
Arciero Wines Lanier at Phoenix 1, Long Beach, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Portland, Meadowlands, Cleveland, Toronto and Michigan 1, MacPherson at Mid-Ohio, Elkhart Lake, Laguna Seca and Phoenix 2, Chassey at Michigan 2 and Cheever at Miami. March 85C at Michigan 2 and Mid-Ohio, March 86C at all other races.
Arciero Wines/ MacHoward Leasing
Cosworth TC 16
Tony Bettenhausen, Jr. Bettenhausen Racing
Lola T8600/ March 86C 61
Arie Luyendyk Race for Life/ MCI/ Provimi Veal Canada/ Scot Lad Foods
All events except Portland and Sanair
Dale Coyne Racing
Dale Coyne Racing Attempted all events except Indianapolis and Milwaukee
Buick/ Cosworth TC 56
Genesee Beer Wagon Chassey at Indianpolis, Milwaukee and Michigan 1, Moran at Meadowlands, Cleveland, Pocono, Mid-Ohio, Michigan 2, Elkhart Lake, Laguna Seca, Phoenix 2 and Miami and Morton at Toronto.
Buick engine until Mid-Ohio, Cosworth the remainder of the season.
Rupert Keegan Indianapolis only, DNQ
Cosworth TC 10
Mountain Computer Indianapolis, Michigan 1, Pocono and Michigan 2 only
GM Goodwrench Indianapolis only
Jim Crawford ASC Buick
Cosworth TC 16 (19)
R.C.V. Corp Long Beach, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Meadowlands, Cleveland and Toronto only.
Cosworth TC 36
Raychem/ Raynor Lewis at Long Beach, Meadowlands, Cleveland, Toronto, Mid-Ohio, Elkhart Lake, Laguna Seca, and Miami, Firestone at Indianapolis, Michigan 1, Pocono, Sanair, Michigan 2 and Phoenix 2
Raynor/ Pace Electronics
Cosworth TC 28
Menard Lumber Indianapolis only, DNQ
- The number in parenthesis is the number the car used at the
Indianapolis 500, if a different number was used.
Race winners [ edit ]
Road Course/Street Circuit
Indianapolis was USAC-sanctioned but counted towards the CART title.
Full Series results [ edit ]
Drivers [ edit ]
4th & 5th place
(Outside Top 10)
Did not finish
Did not qualify
Did not start
Race not held
Italics Ran fastest race lap
Led most race laps
Rookie of the Year
Point Scoring System:
Points are awarded based on each driver's resulting place (regardless of whether the car is running at the end of the race):
1 For Pole Position
1 For Leading The Most Laps Of The Race
References [ edit ]
See also [ edit ]