Dan Wheldon And Family
October 17, 2011 by staff
Dan Wheldon And Family, Holly Cain has covered racing in all its forms for 21 years, winning several awards from the Associated Press Sports Editors and the Society of Professional Journalists for feature and news writing.
Which chronicles the final season of NASCAR champion Rusty Wallace, author of a book called “Last Call Rusty.”
“Hello, sweetheart.” Those were the words I heard when I answered the phone for an interview with Dan Wheldon this week.
Laughing, I said my greetings, asked about their young children, and then began to ask my first question when Wheldon stopped to bust my chops, “Are you going to just guess I was talking to you?”
For all the amazing things Star 33 years old, performed on the track before his tragic death on Sunday IZOD IndyCar Series final in Las Vegas – in particular the 2005 and 2011 Indy 500 wins and 2005 IndyCar championship – which is his great personality, attractive and friendly that lost most.
Dan and his wife, Susie, made their home an hour away from mine, making it my “local driver.” I got to know well over the last ten years, writing about it since its very beginnings IndyCar through its glory days and its recent revitalization.
From day one, it was obvious that Dan was a character that could cause an involuntary smile. With a quick tongue and sharp wit, he was able to take as much as he liked to go around. However, with the sarcastic British accent and omnipresent big smile, with teeth, all I could do was smile back.
When rookie Danica Patrick in 2005 which shows the shadow of his Indy 500 victory, was presented at the next race wearing a shirt that said: “In fact, he won the Indy 500.”
However, it was nice to absolutely everyone in the IndyCar paddock. And he had that intangible that all competitors seek. As much as the drivers enjoyed their company, everyone knew who was his fiercest competition every time I got behind the wheel.
He had 16 victories and IndyCar racing series set a record with six victories in their 2005 championship season.
But for all his success on the track in recent years, Dan resolved better in his role as family man.
I remember how proud he was after proposing to Susie in 2007. Not coincidentally share the news.
“I’m the luckiest guy (in) the world, because I am about to marry the great and beautiful Canadian Susie Behm,”raved Wheldon.
As happy as he always seemed to me, I had never seen him happier than in recent months, when they shared stories of their sons, Sebastian, 2, and Oliver, 7 months. He came from a large family and still wanted more children, but he wisely knew “it really depends on Susie.”
In the direction of Dan, our conversations always, always include updates on their children, and he was so proud to have both on the ground in Indianapolis in the spring to participate in what many consider his most amazing.
After leaving the middle of the pack Panther Racing team last year, Dan somehow, and without logic, it was found out of work for the 2011 season. But Dan was the eternal optimist last, and it was very useful, more than ever in his amazing victory at Indianapolis in May – a victory more likely.
He had not completed one lap race this season, winning the biggest race in the world, driving a car of his former teammate and commissioning of a good friend of Bryan Herta IndyCar operation.
On paper, it was a long shot, but Dan never doubted he could win the race. We often leads to 500 and that was always shy and confident. During the Indy 500 Media Day, three days before the race, the majority of journalists surrounded favorites: good Wheldon’s friends Dario Franchitti and Tony Kanaan.
Dan smiled, nodded toward the multitude of media through the room, and insisted that although most people would consider crazy, thought he could win the race. In fact, he thought they were crazy if you do not think I could win.
He said the same thing this week about the race in Las Vegas. He was part of a special promotion and you split a five million sweepstakes ask a lucky winner could win the race after starting last in the field of 34 cars.
As big as a payday that have been, Wheldon wins in Indianapolis is priceless.
Indy was his favorite race, which meant more to him, and came to celebrate his victory with his great friend emotional Herta, Susie dear wife and the two diminutive size apples of their eyes.
Dan dedicated the victory to his mother, Sue, who has early Alzheimer’s, and spent the next few months in the media attention to draw attention to the disease.
He did not say in the record, but later admitted that Dan felt he needed to win the race. In the days after Indianapolis, painfully wondered if his mother would be able to enjoy many future victories, and if she still totally remember your special day.
It was a gift for her. And his wife and their young children.
For as good as Dan Wheldon was to win races, one of the most memorable runners of his generation was even better to win smiles and touch hearts.
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