Danny Sullivan

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For other people named Danny Sullivan, see Danny Sullivan (disambiguation).
Danny Sullivan
DannySullivan.jpg
Sullivan at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May 2006.
Born (1950-03-09) March 9, 1950 (age 64)
Formula One World Championship career
Nationality United States American
Active years 1983
Teams Tyrrell
Races 15
Career points 2
First race 1983 Brazilian Grand Prix
Last race 1983 South African Grand Prix
Danny Sullivan
PPG Indycar World Series
Years active 1982–1993, 1995
Teams Forsythe Racing
Shierson Racing
Penske Racing
Patrick Racing
Galles Racing
PacWest Racing
Starts 170
Wins 17
Poles 19
Best finish 1st in 1988
Championship titles
1988 PPG Indycar World Series
Awards
1985 Indianapolis 500 winner

Daniel John Sullivan III, better known as Danny Sullivan (born March 9, 1950 in Louisville, Kentucky) is a former American racing driver. He earned 17 wins in the CART IndyCar World Series, including the 1985 Indianapolis 500. He was series champion in 1988, third in 1986, fourth in 1984 and 1985, sixth in 1990 and seventh in 1989 and 1992.

Before racing[edit]

Sullivan was born in Louisville, Kentucky to a building contractor father. He attended the Kentucky Military Institute and then the Jim Russell Racing School. He had several odd jobs before his racing career, including lumberjack, and most famously, New York City cab driver.[1]

Formula One[edit]

Sullivan was given a 21st birthday present of a course at the Jim Russell Racing Drivers School at the Snetterton circuit in England. He competed in Formula Ford and Formula Three before running out of money and returning to race in the United States. In 1982, he made his début in the PPG Indycar series, and was recruited by the Tyrrell Formula One team for the 1983 season at the request of primary sponsor Benetton, who wanted an American driver. Sullivan competed in the fifteen races of the 1983 season, scoring two points with a fifth place at the Monaco Grand Prix and finishing seventeenth in the World Drivers' Championship. He also performed strongly in the non-championship Race of Champions held at the Brands Hatch circuit in April, finishing second behind reigning champion Keke Rosberg. Nevertheless, he was somewhat overshadowed by his more experienced team-mate, Michele Alboreto, and was not retained at the end of the season.

Indy Car career[edit]

Sullivan's Lola T800 at Laguna Seca in 1984.

For 1984, Sullivan returned to America, where he competed in the PPG Indycar series, winning the 1985 Indianapolis 500. The "spin and win" footage of his red and white Miller American spinning 360 degrees down the south short chute (between turns one and two) at Indy after passing Mario Andretti for the lead in the race's 120th lap has been played on countless motorsports programs. Recovering from the spin undamaged except for lightly flat-spotted tires, Sullivan went into the pits for new rubber, then returned to the track and passed Mario a second time twenty laps later to go on for the win. Sullivan would set the pace at Indy again in 1988, leading 91 of the first 101 laps, until a wing adjuster broke and his car drifted out and smacked the turn 1 wall. Nevertheless, he won the Michigan 500 later that summer, and went on to win the CART Indycar series title for Roger Penske that year.

In 1986, Sullivan was a guest star on the television show Miami Vice ("Florence Italy") playing a race car driver accused of murdering a prostitute. The episode featured some short outdoor scenes in the pit lanes of the Miami Grand Prix. Sullivan had limited dialogue in the episode; his longest piece of dialogue was in a police station interrogation scene.

In 1992, Rare released Danny Sullivan's Indy Heat for the Nintendo Entertainment System.

After Indy[edit]

Sullivan (#99) at the 1994 NASCAR Brickyard 400

In 1994, Sullivan took a sabbatical from Indycar racing, and joined ABC/ESPN as a color commentator. He also attempted to run selected events in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series that season.[2] However, he failed to qualify for several events;[3] he only qualified for one race (the 1994 Brickyard 400), and finished 33rd for a very underfunded team. In 1994, he had some guest starts for Alfa Romeo in the DTM and together with Thierry Boutsen and Hans-Joachim Stuck he was third overall with the Dauer 962 LM at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

He returned to Indycar racing for one final year in 1995. His season ended early after a serious crash at Michigan International Speedway. While recovering from a broken pelvis and other injuries, he announced his retirement from open-wheel competition. He returned to ABC-TV for 1996–1997.

Sullivan was a paid celebrity endorser for Danny Sullivan Lexus in Jacksonville, Florida. The Lexus Dealership was owned primarily by members of the Davis Family, who were the founders of Winn Dixie supermarkets.

Sullivan was also instrumental in the Red Bull Driver Search program to find an American driver to compete in Formula One. The program successfully promoted American Scott Speed from California, who drove for the Scuderia Toro Rosso team in 2006 and 2007.

He was the drivers' representative on the stewards' panel for the 2010 German Grand Prix and served in the same post for the 2010 Singapore Grand Prix and the 2012 Hungarian Grand Prix.[4] [5]

Sullivan and Michael Andretti were inducted into the Motorsports Walk of Fame on April 15, 2011, along the route of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, which both men have won.[6]

Sullivan serves as a Senior Advisor at Tempus Jets and its parent company, Orion Air Group, LLC. He also has various business relationships with Lexus, ABC/ESPN, CBS, Red Bull, Acura, and Toyota.[7]

Indy 500 results[edit]

Complete Formula One World Championship results[edit]

(key)

Year Entrant Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 WDC Points
1983 Benetton Tyrrell Team Tyrrell 011 Cosworth V8 BRA
11
USW
8
FRA
Ret
SMR
Ret
MON
5
BEL
12
DET
Ret
CAN
DSQ
GBR
14
GER
12
AUT
Ret
NED
Ret
ITA
Ret
17th 2
Tyrrell 012 EUR
Ret
RSA
7

Indycar career results[edit]

Year Team Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 Rank Points
1982 Forsythe Newman March 82C Ford Cosworth DFX PHX ATL
3
MIL
21
CLE MIS MIL POC RIV ROA MIS2 PHX2             22nd 28
1984 Shierson Racing DSR-1 Ford Cosworth DFX LBH
24
PHX
6
MIL
16
4th 110
Lola T800 INDY
29
POR
23
MEA
2
CLE
1
MIS
10
ROA
19
POC
1
MDO
3
SAN
1
MIS2
9
PHX2
20
LS
9
LVG
18
1985 Team Penske March 85C Ford Cosworth DFX LBH
3
INDY
1
MIL
4
POR
27
MEA
18
CLE
27
MIS
14
ROA
13
POC
5
MDO
2
SAN
5
MIS2
8
LS
8
PHX
4
MIA
1
    4th 126
1986 Team Penske March 86C Ford Cosworth DFX PHX
4
LBH
11
INDY
9
MIL
11
POR
11
MEA
1
CLE
1
TOR
2
MIS
25
POC
16
MDO
3
SAN
5
MIS
12
ROA
6
LS
2
PHX2
2
3rd 147
Penske PC-15 Chevrolet 265A MIA
26
1987 Team Penske Penske PC-16 Chevrolet 265A LBH
22
PHX
11
POR
11
MEA
20
9th 87
March 86C INDY
13
MIL
11
CLE
4
TOR
2
MIS
4
POC
17
ROA
5
MDO
3
NAZ
22
LS
2
MIA
12
1988 Team Penske Penske PC-17 Chevrolet 265A PHX
23
LBH
13
INDY
23
MIL
2
POR
1
CLE
3
TOR
2
MEA
4
MIS
1
POC
18
MDO
5
ROA
4
NAZ
1
LS
1
MIA
5
    1st 182
1989 Team Penske Penske PC-18 Chevrolet 265A PHX
3
LBH
8
INDY
28
MIL
10
DET
24
POR
CLE
MEA
8
TOR
3
MIS
23
POC
1
MDO
5
ROA
1
NAZ
3
LS
14
    7th 107
1990 Team Penske Penske PC-19 Chevrolet 265A PHX
6
LBH
3
INDY
32
MIL
8
DET
14
POR
4
CLE
1
MEA
14
TOR
4
MIS
21
DEN
2
VAN
2
MDO
5
ROA
16
NAZ
18
LS
1
  6th 139
1991 Patrick Racing Lola T91/00 Alfa Romeo Indy V8 SRF
4
LBH
11
PHX
7
INDY
10
MIL
5
DET
10
POR
21
CLE
9
MEA
6
TOR
14
MIS
18
DEN
18
VAN
9
MDO
17
ROA
16
NAZ
20
LS
9
11th 56
1992 Galles Racing Galmer G92 Chevrolet 265A SRF
5
PHX
12
LBH
1
INDY
5
DET
5
POR
12
MIL
12
NHA
9
TOR
3
MIS
8
CLE
20
ROA
7
VAN
7
MDO
8
NAZ
17
LS
7
  7th 99
1993 Galles Racing Lola T93/00 Chevrolet 265C SRF
13
PHX
23
LBH
8
INDY
33
MIL
16
DET
1
POR
14
CLE
14
TOR
3
MIS
NHA
22
ROA
26
VAN
10
MDO
27
NAZ
20
LS
27
  12th 43
1995 PacWest Racing Reynard 95i Ford XB MIA
9
SRF
5
PHX
27
LBH
10
NAZ
18
INDY
9
MIL
17
DET
12
POR
22
ROA
25
TOR
18
CLE
5
MIS
16
MDO NHA VAN LS 19th 32

References[edit]

  1. ^ "8W - Who? - Danny Sullivan". 8w.forix.com. Retrieved 2014-05-09. 
  2. ^ "Sullivan Puts Stock In NASCAR". The Charlotte Observer. January 18, 1994. p. 2B. Retrieved 2013-01-12. 
  3. ^ Williams, Charean (August 2, 1994). "Sullivan Both Novice And Veteran At Indy". South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Ft. Lauderdale, FL. Retrieved 2013-01-12. 
  4. ^ "Sullivan joins stewards for Germany". autosport.com (Haymarket Publishing). 2010-07-21. Retrieved 2010-07-21. 
  5. ^ "Sullivan joins Singapore stewards' panel". PlanetF1.com. Retrieved 2010-09-22. 
  6. ^ "City of Long Beach, CA - News Details". longbeach.gov. Retrieved 2014-05-09. 
  7. ^ "Executive Team | Tempus - A Premier Aviation Services Provider". tempusjets.com. Retrieved 2014-05-09. 

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Rick Mears
Indianapolis 500
Winner

1985
Succeeded by
Bobby Rahal
Preceded by
Bobby Rahal
PPG IndyCar World Series
Champion

1988
Succeeded by
Emerson Fittipaldi