Max Stewart

Australian Muscle Car - - US F5000 -

Max Stewart was killed in a For­mula 5000 crash at Calder in 1977. Forty years on and he re­mains one of our most dec­o­rated open­wheeler stars, with mul­ti­ple Aus­tralian Driv­ers’ Cham­pi­onships and Aus­tralian Grand Prix vic­to­ries to his name. Stewart was among the Aussie con­tin­gent in the US in 1973. In fact, he was ar­guably the most suc­cess­ful of all of them that year, be­ing both the high­est placed Aus­tralian in the points (12th) and the high­est paid (Max took home $6800 prize­money). In­deed, just as Stewart saw the US so­journ as an ad­ven­ture to be en­joyed (and by all ac­counts the man they called the ‘Jolly Green Gi­ant’ was quite adept at en­joy­ing him­self) the pri­mary goal was to make it work fi­nan­cially. Like a lot of his com­pa­tri­ots, he was there on a shoe­string, but Stewart vowed to only keep go­ing as long as suf­fi­cient money was gen­er­ated via re­sults, and hope­fully re­turn home in the black. In the end the de­ci­sion was taken from him as Stewart frac­tured his wrist in a crash at Mid Ohio, with five rounds to run. It’s tempt­ing to won­der just how well he might have fared, given his strong run in the early races. Stewart never qual­i­fied lower than 13th, and he was sixth fastest for both the Michi­gan and Mid Ohio rounds. At River­side and Michi­gan he claimed run­nerup re­sults in the heats, and fourth over­all at Michi­gan was the best round re­sult of the Aus­tralians in 1973.

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