Gordon Smiley... Born ... American race car driver from Omaha, Nebraska that ran SCCA Formula Atlantic, Can-Am, Formula 5000, Formula Super Vee and Indy cars. Smiley raced in the Indianapolis 500 twice, in 1980 and 1981, and was killed while trying to qualify for a third in 1982.
Ted Horn , driving the Horn #1, won the 30-lap AAA Eastern Sprint Car race on the 1/2 mile dirt Williams Grove Speedway in Mechanicsburg, PA.
Bill Blair, taking the lead when Gober Sosebee's Cadillac broke a spindle with 7 laps to go, won the 100 mile NASCAR Grand National race on the 1 mile dirt Lakewood Speedway in Atlanta, Georgia. Ed Samples was 2nd to give Olds 88s a 1-2 finish. Roscoe Thompson replaced the injured Fonty Flock in the Frank Christian Olds. Fonty, hoping to keep from losing more points to Lee Petty, decided he'd try to drive at the last minute. Since he'd already turned his car over to Thompson, Flock scrambled into a back-up Christian Olds & drove as long as he could. Shortly, Fonty was relieved by Jack Smith. Smith drove to 7th, earning 152 points, but Flock only received 58 of those since NASCAR points in driver change situations at the time were based on percentage of laps driven.
Joe James won the 30 lap AAA Midwest Sprint Car race at the Dayton Speedway,Dayton, OH.
Tommy Hinnershitz , driving the Hinnershitz #1, won the 30-lap AAA Eastern Sprint Car race on the 1/2 mile dirt Williams Grove Speedway in Mechanicsburg, PA.
Ed Elisian drove to victory in the 30 lap USAC Midwest Sprint Car feature on the high banked 1/2 mile paved Dayton Speedway in Dayton, Ohio. A.J Foyt finished second followed by Len Sutton, Rex Easton, Bob McLean, Johnny White, Don Branson, Al Miller, Tom McCleland, Eddie Sachs and Elmer George.
Bob Welborn survived a late race spin that erased his big lead, going on to win the NASCAR GN 'Virginia 500' at Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Virginia. Welborn started 20th in the 47 car field on the 1/2 mile paved oval. Leader Jimmy Massey, relief driving Glen Wood's Ford, blew a tire & crashed on lap 396 to give Welborn a lead he wouldn't lose. But, while holding a 4 lap lead with only 30 laps to go, Welborn's Chevy blew a tire & spun. Welborn restarted his car & pitted for a new tire, returning to the track just ahead of teammate Rex White. Welborn managed to stretch his lead slightly, taking the checkered 12 car lengths ahead of White. ( Click here for the race results. )
Fred "Jiggs" Peters drove the John Fray car to victory in the 30 lap USAC Eastern Division Sprint Car feature on the 1/2 dirt oval at the Reading Fairgrounds in Reading, Pennsylvania. Tommy Hinnershitz was second followed by Van Johnson, Johnny Thomson, Bill Randall, Bill Riegel, Joe Barzda, Jim McWithey, Len Duncan, Ralph Liguori and Herb Swan.
Rene Charland won the Modified Stock Car race over Danny Gallulo and Dick Dixon at the Plainville Stadium, Plainville, CT.
Junior Hower won the Stock Car race at the Olympic Stadium, Kansas City, MO. Joe Moore finished second followed by Dave Allen, Bill Chennault and Jerry Weld.
Don Collins won the Stock Car race over Dick Beauregard and Red Foote at the New London-Waterford Speed-Bowl,New London, CT.
Cotton Owens took the lead when Ned Jarrett ran out gas with 4 laps to go and went on to win the 100 mile NASCAR GN race on the 1/2 mile dirt Columbia Speedway in Columbia, South Carolina. Owens win gave Pontiac 8 wins in the 15 GN races held to that point in 1961.
Chuck Rodee wins the USAC Midget race at the Longhorn Speedway, Austin, TX.
Mauricio Gugelmin... Born ... F1 and Cart driver
Larry Dickson drove a Ray Smith owned car to victory in the USAC Sprint Car feature on the 1/2 mile dirt Reading Fairgrounds in Reading, Pennsylvania. Gary Bettenhausen finished 2nd in the series that came to be known as "The Larry and Gary Show" for the duo's domination and great battles.
Bobby Allison used what he termed a "shot in the dark" last minute chassis set-up on the Mario Rossi Dodge to win the NASCAR GN 'Gwyn Staley Memorial' on the .625 mile paved North Wilkesboro Speedway in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina. Allison passed Buddy Baker on the 299th lap, leading the rest of the way to take the checkered 8 seconds ahead of LeeRoy Yarbrough in the Junior Johnson Mercury. David Pearson finished third & Buddy Baker fourth, all four on the lead lap.
Charlie Masters wins the USAC Sprint Car race over Larry Dickson and Tom Bigelow at the Salem Speedway in Salem,IN .