Any clue to this T150 or 152?

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Any clue to this T150 or 152?

Postby Donohuefan » Tue May 18, 2010 7:47 pm

This photo was recently posted on another website, and the author thought it might be Mark Donohue's 1969 Indy 500 car. The photo was taken in June of 1972, just after Mark had won the 1972 Indy race. I think it is probably an old chassis that either wasn't raced or a different car used for display purposes. I did some Goggling and found that only 3 T150 were made, and not sure how many T152's were made.

Any idea if this is a T150 or T152, and which car it might have been.

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Here is the photo of the car in previous post...

Postby Donohuefan » Tue May 18, 2010 7:48 pm

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Postby Gerald Swan » Thu May 20, 2010 3:59 pm

Hi Donohuefan,

I think the T150/152/153 story is:

The T150 was built with a Hewland four-wheel-drive system although there was an option to convert back to two-wheel-drive if needed, the engine was a turbocharged Ford. Two cars were initially built in 1968 and supplied to George Bignotti, Al Unser qualified 6th at Indy in the Retzloff Chemicals-sponsored car but crashed out, he won two races later in the season at Langhorne. A third car was built up at the end of the year and sold to US Racers Inc.

A modified version of the car called a T152 (still 4WD) was designed in 1969 and two cars were supplied to Roger Penske via Carl Haas. Penske's two cars were fitted with a turbo Offy and a stock-block Chevrolet. The Indy 500 saw Bobby Unser (Bardahl - Offy Turbocharged), Mark Donohue (Sunoco - Offy TC) and Bud Tingelstad (Vel's Parnelli Ford - Ford TC) race. Unser qualified and finished 3rd, Donohue qualified 4th and finished 7th, Tingelstad (substituting for an injured Al Unser) qualified 18th and finished 15th. The Unser brothers cars are listed in contemporary reports as T152s, although the Vel's Parnelli car was a modified version of the previous year's Retzloff T150, most notably it was now 2WD. Possibly Bobby Unser's car was a T150 updated to T152 spec. Later in the year Al Unser won in the Vel's Parnelli car at Milwaukee, Phoenix and Seattle.

The final incarnation of the T150 was the 1970 T153, one car was built and sold to Penske. USAC had now outlawed 4WD so the T153 was 2WD. Donohue in the Penske turbo Ford car qualified 5th at Indy and finished 2nd.

Interestingly the 1970 Indy 500 was won by Al Unser in the Johnny Lightning Colt. In 1970 the Vel's Parnelli T150 was further modified and generally known as the Lola-Colt and two other cars based on the Lola were built, these were simply known as Colts. The Lola-Colt was used by Unser on road-courses and short ovals and Unser won three races in it on his way to winning the 1970 USAC Championship, the Indy-winning car was one of the cars built that was based on the Lola T150.

As to what that car pictured is I have no idea as the T150/152 were externally almost identical and there is not enough detail to be able to get any clues.

There is one of the T152s undergoing restoration at the moment.

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Postby Donohuefan » Fri May 21, 2010 7:22 pm


Thanks for your quick response, and such though information.

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