INDIANAPOLIS – The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Foundation Inc. has confirmed that legendary motorcycle racer and stock car driver Paul Goldsmith, and U. E. “Pat” Patrick, who entered three winning cars in the Indianapolis 500, will be inducted this year into the Auto Racing Hall of Fame.
Selected by a panel of more than 100 experts in auto racing, Goldsmith and Patrick bring the number of individuals who have been recognized for their outstanding contributions to the sport of racing and to the development of the automotive industry to 152. The Auto Racing Hall of Fame, founded in 1952, is located at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.
Goldsmith and Patrick will be honored on May 26, 2016, at the annual Hall of Fame Banquet presented by Pennzoil and held in collaboration with the International Ass’n of Indianapolis 500 Oldtimers. Gathering with about 800 of their closest friends and colleagues in auto racing, the two groups also will honor Rick Mears for his four Indianapolis 500 wins and other contributions to the sport. Mears was inducted into the Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 1998. They also are honoring the current Indianapolis 500 champion Juan Pablo Montoya and the reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon.
Goldsmith enjoyed a career so diversified that references to him having won at Milwaukee, Langhorne or Daytona Beach require clarification as to whether the event in question was for two wheels or four. After finishing second to his protégé Joe Leonard (a fellow Hall of Famer) in the 1954 American Motorcyclist Ass’n championship, Goldsmith started driving National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) stock cars for Smokey Yunick.
Later teaming up with Ray Nichels, Goldsmith finished second in the 1960 United States Auto Club (USAC) stock car championship and then won the title in 1961 and 1962, amassing 18 wins in 39 starts during that period. He rarely took part in open-wheel competition but did compete in the Indianapolis 500 six times, finishing third in 1960.
Patrick enjoyed 45 victories as a team owner in USAC or Championship Auto Racing Teams competition. His entries won the 1973 and 1982 Indianapolis 500-Mile races and the 1976 USAC National Championship title with driver Gordon Johncock. He also won the 1989 Indianapolis 500 and the CART championship title with former two-time World Champion Emerson Fittipaldi.
Patrick’s team enjoyed many successes between 1973 and 1980 with chief mechanic George Bignotti. In addition to Johncock and Fittipaldi, his roster of notable drivers included Mario Andretti, Al Unser, Johnny Rutherford, Wally Dallenbach, Roberto Guerrero, Raul Boesel, Kevin Cogan, Chip Ganassi and Jimmy Vasser.