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INDY 500 MEMORIAL - 1982
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The Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Fatalities - May 15, 1982
Gordon Smiley - driver
Gordon Smiley qualified the Valvoline Phoenix/Cosworth
for the Patrick Racing team in 20th position for the 1980
Indy 500. His turbocharger blew on lap 47 to finish in 25th.

Gordon Smiley qualified the Intermedics Wildcat
VIII/Cosworth for the Patrick Racing team in 8th position
for the 1981 Indy 500. He crashed out on lap 141 to finish
in 22nd.


THE ACCIDENT

Saturday, May 15, 1982: POLE DAY
Rick Mears came out early to qualify and shattered both
the single and four-lap records. with a single-lap speed of
207.612 mph and averages 207.004 mph.

About an hour later, two-time starter
Gordon Smiley gets
loose on his second warm-up lap and slams head-on into
the outside wall of Turn 3.  His car disintegrates and
Smiley dies instantly. His is the first fatality at the
Speedway since 1973.


I was there that day, down in the snake pit in Turn 1.
I knew there had been a crash, but had no idea what
happened.  The action on the track stopped.  After several
hours, the track reopened and I learned that Smiley was
dead.
Smiley's Indy Record
Gordon Smiley
Year   Car No.     Car                    Laps Completed             Start    Finish
1980        70        Valvoline          47 - turbo                           20        25
1981        60        Intermedics      141 - accident                    8         22
Gordon Smiley (1946-1982)
Calvary Cemetery, Omaha NE