Saturday 23rd April 1966
John Cannon drove actor Dan Blocker’s Vinegaroon Special Genie-Olds to victory in the United States Road Racing Championship Sports Car race at Stardust International Raceway, Las Vegas, US. Pole sitter Jerry Grant just made the grid after Dan Gurney fixed an oil leak on the All-American Racers Lola-Gurney/Weslake/Ford. When the green fell on the 90 degree day, Grant and Charlie Hayes took off from the field. On lap 5, Grant slipped off the narrow track surface, peppering Hayes’ Nickey McLaren-Chevy with rocks. Hayes spun off into the desert, out of the race with a punctured radiator. A flying Grant continued to pull away, leading Cannon by 40 seconds when the gearbox seized on the 34th lap. Hayes confronted Grant in the pits, accusing him of deliberately kicking up the rocks, a charge which Grant denied in the heated discussion. Slowing with a water leak and a dying battery, Cannon took his wounded car across the line 33 seconds ahead of Chuck Parsons’ Genie-Chevy that was plagued with fuel starvation in the latter laps. Skip Hudson’s Lola-Chevy was 3rd, more than a lap down. “Buck” Fulp was challenging Hudson for 3rd late in the race when a rock went through his goggles, sending Fulp to the hospital for a check.