Jim Fitzgerald -- Racing Legend - Nissan : Datsun ZCar forum :Nissan Z Forum: 240Z to 370Z
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#1 (permalink) Old 09-13-2000, 03:38 PM
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Jim Fitzgerald -- Racing Legend

Hi, I'm hoping that someone out there follows Nissan racing closely enough to answer the following question: Does anyone recall the exact circumstances of Datsun/Nissan racing legend Jim Fitzgerald's fatal accident at the St. Petersburg's Trans-Am race in the mid to late-1980s in his 300ZX? He was the teammate of Paul Newman and I seem to remember that he suffered a heart-attack during the race which caused his single-car accident? There's a question about this on another racing message board. If you know, I'd appreciate any details you might be able to share. Please indicate the source even if it's just your memory. Thanks.

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#2 (permalink) Old 09-13-2000, 07:11 PM
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#3 (permalink) Old 09-13-2000, 10:24 PM
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RE: Jim Fitzgerald -- Racing Legend

I live in St Petersburg and I recall that his car slammed into the concrete barrier along the straightaway in front of Bayboro Harbour. I vaguely remember the news showing were the wreck took place, and I thought it strange he wrecked on a straightway and not in one of the many hard turns. I also recall that the local paper reported he might have had a cardiac arrest prior to the crash. You probably would have no problem locating the whole story from the St Petersburg Times. I'm sure it is on microfische. I believe it was the 1986 or 1987 race. Each year when they had the St Pete Grand Prix, they would erect the concrete barriers a week ahead of time. When the cops weren't around, alot of drivers(myself included) would drive the whole course, occasionally racing just inches away from the barriers! I had just bought my 1979 280ZX, and I thought it was real cool that Paul Newman drove a Z. I hope this helps.
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