The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Auto Racing Hall of Fame has announced that Sir Jackie Stewart is to be one of their two new inductees in 2011.
Sir Jackie is being honoured for his past history with the Speedway and the Indianapolis 500, which include two starts in the race in 1966 and 1967.
In his rookie outing in the Indy 500 in 1966, Sir Jackie was leading the race with just nine laps to go when mechanical failure dropped him to sixth place. Graham Hill went on to win with Jim Clark in second place, while Sir Jackie was named Rookie of the Year.
In his second year, in a race split over two days because of rain, Sir Jackie was running third behind Parnelli Jones and eventual winner AJ Foyt when his engine failed with 32 laps to go.
He did not enter the race again, but instead returned to Indianapolis as a commentator on the race for American TV network ABC for 13 years between 1971 and 1984. Famously, ABC sports journalist Jim McKay once quipped that Stewart spoke on air almost as fast as he drove on track.
The induction also recognises Sir Jackie's long campaign for safety in motor sport, which transformed the then-lethal F1 championship into a more safety conscious, driver-led organisation.
Sir Jackie also has a long association in the sport with the Ford Motor Company, which included playing an active role in Jaguar F1 after the motor giant bought out his Stewart Racing operation.
Sir Jackie will be joined as an inductee at the ceremony on Thursday, May 26 by Jim McGee, legendary chief mechanic and race strategist who has worked with a roll call of the top drivers in the sport such as Nigel Mansell. He contributed to four Indy 500 wins during his career, including the triumphant victory by Mario Andretti in 1969, and has worked for teams including Penske, Newman/Haas, Parnelli Jones Racing and the Dean Van Lines team.
"It's a great honor to welcome Jackie Stewart and Jim McGee into the Hall of Fame," said Jeff Belskus, CEO and President of the IMS Corporation. "Their skills and achievements are a significant part of the history of IMS and, in particular, the Indianapolis 500.
"They're both very deserving of motor racing's highest honor on this 100th anniversary year for the 500."