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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

George Francis 'Pat' Flaherty, Jr. (January 6, 1926 – April 9, 2002) was an American racecar driver who won the Indianapolis 500 in 1956.

Born in Glendale, California, Flaherty died of cancer in Oxnard, California. He drove in the AAA and USAC Championship Car series, racing in the 1950, 1953-1956, 1958-1958, and 1963 seasons with 19 starts, including the Indianapolis 500 races in 1950, 1953, 1955, 1956, and 1959. He finished in the top ten 9 times, with victories in 1955 and 1956 at Milwaukee as well as the 1956 Indianapolis 500.

Indy 500 results

Year Car Start Qual Rank Finish Laps Led Retired
1950 59 11 129.608 30 10 135 0 Running
1953 77 24 135.668 27 22 115 0 Crash NC
1954 38 - - - Ret* 110 ? Crash
1955 89 12 140.149 8 10 200 0 Running
1956 8 1 145.596 1 1 200 127 Running
1959 64 18 142.399 21 19 162 11 Crash FS
Totals 812 138
Starts 5
Poles 1
Front Row 1
Wins 1
Top 5 1
Top 10 3
Retired 2

* Shared drive with Jim Rathmann

World Championship career summary

The Indianapolis 500 was part of the FIA World Championship from 1950 through 1960. Drivers competing at Indy during those years were credited with World Championship points and participation. Pat Flaherty participated in 6 World Championship races. He started on the pole once, won once, and accumulated a total of 8 championship points.

Trivia

  • In the Spring of 1956, Flaherty did not have a ride for the 1956 Indianspolis 500. While tending bar at the tavern he owned on Chicago's north side, Flaherty overheard from two racing insiders, that car owner Zink did not have a driver yet for his racecar. Flaherty quickly called him and the two agreed over the phone to a one race deal.
  • Pat Flaherty successfully raced pigeons for over twenty years after he retired form auto racing.
Preceded by
Bob Sweikert
Indianapolis 500 Winner
1956
Succeeded by
Sam Hanks
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