“We are deeply saddened by the tragic and sudden death of Dan Wheldon, who drove for Target Chip Ganassi Racing from 2006 to 2008. He was a special part of the Target family and our heartfelt sympathies go out to Dan’s family and friends,” said Gregg Steinhafel, chairman, president and CEO of Target, after the fatal crash at yesterday’s Las Vegas Indy 300.
He was a great man, teammate, husband, father and friend.
Below, the racing world remembers Dan Wheldon – telling tales of his charming personality, big heart and unabridged passion for the sport.
“We put so much pressure on ourselves to win races and championships, and that’s what we love to do, what we live for. Days like today, it doesn’t really matter. I lost, we lost, a good friend. Everybody in IndyCar considered Dan a friend. You saw what the reaction was. Dan was one of those special, special people, from when he first showed up at IndyCar.” — Dario Franchitti, Target Chip Ganassi driver and Dan’s former teammate
“We’re going to miss him. Everybody in IndyCar died a little today.” – Chip Ganassi, Dan’s former car owner
“Dan is family and I will miss him badly — such an amazing person and wonderful family man. We will be with Susie, Sebastian and Oliver for whatever they need. I still can’t believe it.” Scott Dixon, Target Chip Ganassi driver and Dan’s former teammate
“We are all very sad. He was a good friend of all of ours and he will be missed. I feel for his family.” – Danica Patrick, former IndyCar driver who bid farewell to the world of IndyCar racing after Sunday’s race
“He was one of my best friends and one of my greatest teammates from back in the day. –Tony Kanaan, IndyCar driver and Dan’s former teammate
“I have so many good memories of racing with Dan in the early 90s, a true fighter. We’ve lost a legend in our sport but also a great guy … I can’t begin to imagine what his family are going through and my thoughts are with them at this very difficult time.” – Jenson Button, F1 driver
“It’s a black day for the sport. We came in here hoping for a good season-finale and ended up losing a very close friend and a very good racing driver.” — James Hinchcliffe, IndyCar driver
“I feel so bad for Susie and their kids. It’s so tough to understand when somebody is gone that quickly. Dan was always a very happy guy; he was always smiling. He was a funny, great person that touched a lot of people. He will be missed.” —Oriol Servia, IndyCar driver
“His family and friends were with him at the track today, and he was surrounded by love. He was doing what all true racers love best. There is a massive hole in my heart, but I am blessed to have shared in his life, his family and friends and his mighty racing accomplishments. ” — Scott Borchetta, president and CEO of the Big Machine Label Group & sponsor of Dan’s car
“Dan Wheldon was a tremendous competitor and great racer and an even better person. It was an honor to have him be a part of our team. All of us at Sam Schmidt Motorsports are deeply saddened by his passing. On behalf of everyone at Sam Schmidt Motorsports, our prayers go out to all of his family, especially his wife, Susie, and their two children.” — Sam Schmidt, owner of Sam Schmidt Motorsports
“His passion for the sport was evident every day, and he worked endlessly to do the best he could at everything he did. We extend our sympathies to his family, to his team, and to his many friends and fans. He was a talented competitor on the track who will be long remembered by all who had the privilege of working with and knowing him.” — Al Speyer, executive director of Firestone Racing
“Dan was much more than a great driver. He was a good guy, good family man and really seemed to have a bright future, not only as a driver, but as a television personality as well.” — Bobby Rahal, co-owner of Rahal Letterman Racing
“Dan had a passion for motorsports and a wonderful personality that made him a friend to everyone in the racing community. His talent and dedication were an inspiration to us all. We will miss him terribly and everyone at Honda extends our deepest sympathies to his family, friends and fans across the world.” — Erik Berkman, president of Honda Performance Development
“He was a great champion of the Indianapolis 500 and a wonderful ambassador for the race, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and all of motorsports. Most importantly, he was a fantastic husband, father and man — a good friend to so many in this sport. His memory will live forever at the Speedway, both through the magnitude of his accomplishments on the track and his magnetism off the track.” – Jeff Belskus, Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation president and CEO
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