News & Multimedia

102-Year-Old Fulfills Need For Speed

“Let’s do that again,” said Edith Pittenger as she leaned into the cockpit to thank Mario Andretti for the high-speed two-seat Indy car ride around the historic Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

“It’s a date,” the auto racing legend replied.

Nearly 40 family members gathered trackside May 13 to cheer on the resident of Muncie, Ind., and mark the special occasion.

“She did this when she was younger … 96,” said her son, Jay Pittenger.

That was 2008 with two-time Indianapolis 500 Mile Race winner Arie Luyendyk behind the wheel of the stretched Indy car to set an unofficial record for the oldest person to take a lap on the famed 2.5-mile oval. Now, at 102 years old, the spry great-great-grandmother sent a message to potential challengers.

“That was fun; come and try it,” said Pittenger, who raised her arms as Andretti sped over the Yard of Bricks that mark the start-finish line.

The two-seater ride six years ago was a Christmas present from family members, while this excursion was organized by Indy Racing Experience co-owner Scott Jasek.

“My family knew it was something I wanted to do back then, and it was so much fun I wanted to do it again,” Pittenger said, “and it was just as much fun this time.”

Pittenger, who attended her first Indianapolis 500 in 1948 when her son, Lynn, was an usher, returned for more than two decades with a gaggle various family members in tow. The 1969 race stands out in her memory – the year Andretti led 116 laps en route to victory for car owner Andy Granatelli.

Andretti, who will be recognized on Legends Day (May 24) on the 45th anniversary of his victory, joined Indianapolis Motor Speedway President J. Douglas Boles and the large family contingent in congratulating Pittenger.

“It just shows that you can be too young to ride but you’re never too old,” Andretti said.
 

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
102-Year-Old Fulfills Need For Speed
 
102-Year-Old Fulfills Need For Speed
That was 2008 with two-time Indianapolis 500 Mile Race winner Arie Luyendyk behind the wheel of the stretched Indy car to set an unofficial record for the oldest person to take a lap on the famed 2.5-mile oval. Now, at 102 years old, the spry great-great-grandmother sent a message to potential challengers.
Read More
Related Media
Georgia Street
 
Downtown Georgia Street to Host Free "Rock-IN-Roar 500" Music Festival on May 20
Rock-IN-Roar 500 is a free music festival and community celebration that officially “drops the green flag” on Race Week in Indianapolis.
Read More
Colts Draft Party
 
Indianapolis Colts to Host Fourth and Fifth Round Draft Selections at IMS
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is hosting the Indianapolis Colts’ Official Draft Party for the fourth and fifth rounds of the NFL Draft. Come out to IMS from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 30, to witness the Colts’ selections. The event is free and there will be Colts player and cheerleader appearances. You will be able to watch live picks for the rounds made by Colts personalities and Verizon IndyCar Series drivers. There will be complete draft coverage along with fun activities and games from the Indianapolis Colts organization as well.
Read More
Rick Mears vs. Dan Wheldon
 
#ChampsOfThe500 Challenge Reaches Final First-Round Matchups
The final first-round matchups in the "Champions of the 500" bracket challenge are open for voting to determine who will join Helio Castroneves, A.J. Foyt, Johnny Rutherford, Al Unser, Bobby Unser and Bill Vukovich in the quarterfinal round.
Read More
Tony Stewart
 
NASCAR Drivers Turn Test Laps in Advance of July's Crown Royal 400 at the Brickyard
NASCAR drivers Aric Almirola, Carl Edwards, Chase Elliott and Stewart turned laps at IMS on Tuesday and Wednesday for a Goodyear tire test in advance of the Crown Royal presents the “Your Hero’s Name Here” 400 at the Brickyard on July 22-24.
Read More
Darius Rucker
 
Multi-Platinum Recording Star Darius Rucker to Perform National Anthem at 100th Indianapolis 500
Three-time GRAMMY Award winner and multi-platinum recording artist Darius Rucker will perform the national anthem before the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 2,149
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact Laura Wyamn at (317) 492-8557 or email at lwyman@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
Today we look in to the photo vault at AJ Foyt! You're sure to see some gems! https://t.co/56Hd7aQ6h0 https://t.co/62rmSahQm8
about 2 hours ago