Kurtis Kraft

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1955 Kurtis 500S
1953 Kurtis 500S, Chrysler-powered
1955 Kurtis 500B Championship Car driven by Jimmy Davies to 3rd place in the 1955 Indianapolis 500

Kurtis Kraft was an American designer and builder of race cars. The company built midget cars, quartermidgets, sports cars, sprint cars Bonneville Cars and USAC Championship Cars. It was founded by Frank Kurtis when he built his own midget car chassis in the late 1930s.[1]

Kurtis built some very low glass-fibre bodied two-seaters sports cars under his own name in Glendale, California between 1949 and 1955. Ford (US) running gear was used. About 36 cars had been made when the licence was sold to Madman Muntz who built the Muntz Jet. In 1954 and 1955, road versions of their Indianapolis racers were offered.

Kurtis Kraft created over 550 ready-to-run midget cars, and 600 kits.[1] The Kurtis Kraft chassis midget car featured a smaller version of the Offenhauser motor. The National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame describes the combination as "virtually unbeatable for over twenty years." [1] Kurtis Kraft created 120 Indianapolis 500 cars, including five winners.[1]

Kurtis sold the midget car portion of the business to Johnny Pawl in the late 1950s, and the quarter midget business to Ralph Potter in 1962.

Frank Kurtis was the first non-driver inducted in the National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame (U.S.). Zeke Justice and Ed Justice of the Justice Brothers both worked at Kurtis-Kraft after World War II. Zeke Justice was the first employee at Kurtis-Kraft.

The FIA World Drivers' Championship included the Indianapolis 500 between 1950 and 1960, so many Kurtis Kraft cars are credited with competing in that championship. One Kurtis midget car was also entered in the 1959 Formula One United States Grand Prix driven by Rodger Ward. It was not designed for European-style road racing and with an undersized engine it circulated at the back of the field for 20 laps before retiring with clutch problems.[2]

World Championship results[edit]

From 1950 to 1960, the Indianapolis 500 was part of the FIA World Championship.

(Note: Race winners in bold.)

Year Team Driver # of GPs
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Cecil Green 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Duke Dinsmore 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Fred Agabashian 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack McGrath 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jerry Hoyt 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Cummins Jimmy Jackson 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnny McDowell 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Joie Chitwood 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Mack Hellings 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat Flaherty 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Sam Hanks 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Walt Brown 1
1950 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Walt Faulkner 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Schindler 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Carl Forberg 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Carl Scarborough 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Cecil Green 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Chet Miller 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Cliff Griffith 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Duke Nalon 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Fred Agabashian 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Gene Force 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack McGrath 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Lee Wallard 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Manny Ayulo 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Mike Nazaruk 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Sam Hanks 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Troy Ruttman 1
1951 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Walt Brown 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Andy Linden 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Art Cross 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Vukovich 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Scott 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Sweikert 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Chet Miller 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Chuck Stevenson 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Cliff Griffith 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Duke Nalon 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Cummins Fred Agabashian 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Gene Hartley 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser George Connor 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack McGrath 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jim Rathmann 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Bryan 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Reece 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Joe James 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnny McDowell 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Rodger Ward 1
1952 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Sam Hanks 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Art Cross 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Holland 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Vukovich 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Cal Niday 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Carl Scarborough 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Duke Nalon 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Fred Agabashian 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Gene Hartley 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack McGrath 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jerry Hoyt 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jim Rathmann 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Davies 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Daywalt 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Marshall Teague 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Paul Russo 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Rodger Ward 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Sam Hanks 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Spider Webb 1
1953 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Walt Faulkner 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Art Cross 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Homeier 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Vukovich 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Sweikert 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Duane Carter 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Ernie McCoy 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Frank Armi 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Fred Agabashian 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Gene Hartley 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack McGrath 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jerry Hoyt 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Daywalt 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Jackson 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Larry Crockett 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Mike Nazaruk 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat Flaherty 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat O'Connor 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Paul Russo 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Sam Hanks 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Tony Bettenhausen 1
1954 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Troy Ruttman 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Al Herman 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Al Keller 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Andy Linden 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Art Cross 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Homeier 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Vukovich 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Sweikert 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Cal Niday 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Chuck Weyant 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Ed Elisian 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Fred Agabashian 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack McGrath 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Davies 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Daywalt 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnny Boyd 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat Flaherty 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat O'Connor 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Paul Russo 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Ray Crawford 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Sam Hanks 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Tony Bettenhausen 1
1955 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Walt Faulkner 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Al Herman 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Al Keller 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Andy Linden 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Christie 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Veith 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Dick Rathmann 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Duke Dinsmore 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Ed Elisian 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Fred Agabashian 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack Turner 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jim Rathmann 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Daywalt 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Tolan 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnny Boyd 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Keith Andrews 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat O'Connor 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Paul Russo 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Ray Crawford 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Rodger Ward 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Sam Hanks 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Tony Bettenhausen 1
1956 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Troy Ruttman 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Al Keller 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Andy Linden 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bill Cheesbourg 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Christie 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Don Edmunds 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Don Freeland 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Ed Elisian 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Eddie Johnson 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Eddie Russo 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Elmer George 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Fred Agabashian 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jack Turner 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Daywalt 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Reece 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Tolan 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnny Boyd 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Marshall Teague 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Mike Magill 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat O'Connor 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Paul Russo 1
1957 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Tony Bettenhausen 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Al Keller 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Bill Cheesbourg 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Billy Garrett 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Christie 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Veith 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Eddie Johnson 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jerry Unser 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnnie Parsons 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnny Boyd 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Johnny Thomson 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Len Sutton 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Mike Magill 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Pat O'Connor 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Paul Goldsmith 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Novi Paul Russo 1
1958 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Shorty Templeman 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Christie 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bobby Grim 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Chuck Arnold 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Chuck Weyant 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Don Freeland 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Duane Carter 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Eddie Johnson 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jim McWithey 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jimmy Daywalt 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Jud Larson 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Paul Russo 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Red Amick 1
1959 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Rodger Ward 2
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser A J Foyt 1
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Bob Christie 1
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Dempsey Wilson 1
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Don Freeland 1
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Eddie Russo 1
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Gene Force 1
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Gene Hartley 1
1960 Kurtis Kraft-Offenhauser Shorty Templeman 1

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Biography at the National Midget Auto Racing Hall of Fame
  2. ^ Hodges, David (1998). A-Z of Formula Racing Cars 1945–1990. Bay View books. p. 128. ISBN 1-901432-17-3. 

External links[edit]