After failing to qualify for the 1973 Indy 500, Sneva is the fastest-qualifying rookie.
Sneva is running fifth when he bumps tires with Eldon Rasmussen in Turn 2, launching Sneva’s car into the catch fence where the car rips in half and bursts into flames. Sneva is able to walk to the ambulance.
Starts in the pole position after becoming the first Indy driver to turn a lap at more than 200 mph. Finishes second behind A.J. Foyt, who becomes Indy’s first four-time winner.
Again, Sneva sits on the pole. Again, he finishes second — this time to Al Unser. Sneva will go on, however, to win a second consecutive USAC championship.d
Crashes in Turn 4 with 12 laps to go.
Starts in last place but finishes in second — only the second time in Indy 500 history that’s happened.
Qualifies with the fastest speed but not until pole qualifying is over. Despite starting way back in the pack, Sneva leads for 25 laps before his clutch fails and his engine stalls on lap 58. He’ll fall 35 laps down before he re-enters the race briefly. His engine dies on lap 131.
Sneva leads for 31 laps and is in contention with Gordon Johncock and Rick Mears when he loses power with three laps to go. Johncock will go on to win and Mears will finish second.
Fortune finally smiles upon Sneva. He leads for 98 laps — nearly half the race — but with Al Unser in the lead late in the race, Sneva finds himself deliberately blocked by Unser’s son, Al Unser Jr. Sneva manages to pass them both with 10 laps to go and earns what will be the only Indy 500 win of his career.
Sneva becomes the first driver to qualify with a speed of more than 210 mph and is rewarded with his third pole. Sneva leads for 31 laps and looks like he’s off to a second consecutive win before he breaks a CV joint with 32 laps to go.
Is still in the lead lap at the halfway point but attempts to avoid a crash and hits the wall in Turn 1.
Sneva is warming up his car on the pace lap when he loses control and crashes at the exit of Turn 2. He’s out of the race before it officially begins.
It’s a rough month for Sneva. He crashes two cars in three days during qualifying and then, with 50 laps to go in the race itself, hits the wall in Turn 2.
Crashes coming out of the pits on lap 34.
Hits 223.176 mph during qualifying but blows his engine before his run is over.
Fails to qualify for the Indianapolis 500 for the first time in 17 years.
After only four laps of racing, Eric Bachelart blows an engine and a yellow flag slows everything down so debris could be cleaned from the track. When the race restarts on lap 11, Sneva loses control and crashes into the Turn 4 wall.
Sources: Racing-Reference.info, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Motor Sport magazine, Spokesman-Review and Chronicle files