INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — It’s been more than half a century since Troy Ruttman won the Indianapolis 500 in 1952.
His daughter, Toddy Ruttman, says she often thinks about her father.
“I hope I will be a great ambassador of my father’s legacy and win here 69 years ago,” she said.
Troy Ruttman became the youngest driver to win the Greatest Spectacle in Racing. He was 22 years and 80 days old. Toddy Ruttman says she looks up to her dad.
“It’s a big honor,” she said. “My dad had a big heart. Fortunately, maybe, unfortunately, I have a big heart, so it’s good sometimes and not so good sometimes, but I’m very honored to be and very proud to be my dad’s daughter.”
She told News 8 even racecar legend A.J. Foyt has held memories of her father.
“He says, ‘Hey, Miller, I heard you’re saying that Poncho Carter is the best sprint race car driver that ever lived. Obviously, you’ve never seen Troy Ruttman drive his sprint car because he is the best sprint racecar driver that ever lived.’ And that’s coming from A.J. Foyt. That’s a big statement.”
She says she’ll be the first to congratulate the person who can beat her father’s record. This year, she has her eyes on three young competitors.
“[Rinus] VeeKay is very young,” Toddy Ruttman said. “He’s a teenager, 19. Colton is 20 and Pato I believe is 22 and they’re all great race car drivers. They’re all on great teams.”
Now she’s back at the speedway hoping to continue his legacy. This year, she bought a home near the speedway where she’s reminded of her father.
“I looked up at the sky and I said, ‘Dad, you would be so proud of me and I hope I’m doing a good job of carrying on the family tradition and being a representative of Troy Ruttman in the flesh here in the Indy 500.'”