Dan Gurney is among the most storied names in motorsports history. Though his racing career with Porsche was brief, the mark Gurney left on racing is lasting. During his career as a driver Gurney achieved wins in Formula 1, NASCAR, IndyCar and international sports car racing. Indeed, the group of drivers to achieve victories in all four of these fields is limited to Gurney, Mario Andretti and Juan Pablo Montoya. Gurney also achieved the first Formula 1 victories for three different manufacturers, including Posche, Brabham, and All-American Racers (which Gurney owned and co-founded with Carroll Shelby).
Gurney won two Formula 1 races with Porsche
His 1962 win at the French Grand Prix is still the marque’s only victory as a constructor in a Formula 1 Championship round. Then again in 1962 Gurney won the Solitude Grand Prix, followed by fellow Porsche drive Jo Bonnier. Both wins occurred in the Porsche 804, a marvelous sounding flat-8 powered Porsche.
Dan Gurney’s career in racing of course did not end with Porsche, or even with Formula 1. Before retiring from driving in 1970, Gurney won a total of 51 races, including winning Le Mans with Ford in 1967. His career continued at the helm of All American Racers for the next four decades, and the success as a constructor continued. Though the AAR Formula 1 effort ended in 1968, the company continued on as a constructor in CART, IMSA GT, and Trans-Am. As a constructor AAR pioneered the Gurney flap, a feature which is used on virtually every wing in motorsport.
Gurney’s influence continued outside of motorsport. In fact, in recent years, AAR has been involved in aerospace development. Indeed, the company recently constructed the carbon fiber landing struts used by the Space-X program.
He is survived by his wife Evi, five sons, and eight grandchildren.