102-year-old takes ride at Indianapolis Speedway
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A 102-year-old woman says she’s disappointed racing great Mario Andretti couldn’t go faster than 180 mph during their laps around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Edith Pittenger of Muncie said she had a great time riding with Andretti in a two-seat race car Tuesday.
“He said 180 is the maximum,” she told The Star Press. “I wanted to do 200, but he wouldn’t do that.”
Dozens of family members joined Pittenger at the speedway for what was her second trip around the track — in 2008, she rode with driver Arie Luyendyk Jr. She marked her 100th birthday two years ago by going parasailing.
Pittenger ended her latest speedway laps with a drink of milk — just like the tradition of Indy 500 winners in victory lane.
Garett Cates said he was amazed by his grandmother’s sense of adventure.
“I know people in their 70s and 80s who, I mean they’re bedridden, and they can’t get around or hardly do anything, but I mean my goodness she’s 102 and she’s going 180 miles an hour at least in a race car,” he said.
Pittenger told WRTV she remembered first driving a car in the 1920s when she was 12 years old.
“I would just jump in the car and the kids would ride on the running board and we’d go around the reformatory that’s down at Pendleton where I was born,” Pittenger said.
Pittenger said she wasn’t nervous with Andretti behind the wheel.
“He didn’t slow down around those corners, that’s what surprised me,” she said.