Travis Webb (October 8, 1910 – January 27, 1990) was an American racecar driver from Joplin, Missouri. He was the 1948 American Automobile Association (AAA) Midwest Sprint Car champion. He raced in numerous AAA Champ Car races including six Indianapolis 500.
October 8, 1910
|Died||January 27, 1990 (aged 79)|
|Achievements||1948 AAA Midwest Sprint Car champion|
|Champ Car career|
|20 races run over 8 years|
|Years active||1939 - 1955|
|Best finish||17th (1949)|
|First race||1939 Milwaukee 100 (Milwaukee Mile)|
|Last race||1955 Indianapolis 500|
|Formula One World Championship career|
|Teams||Bromme, Maserati, Kurtis Kraft, Deidt|
|Entries||5 (4 starts)|
|First entry||1950 Indianapolis 500|
|Last entry||1955 Indianapolis 500|
|Statistics current as of April 24, 2021.|
Webb decided to stop racing on the long straightaways and decided to focus on dirt oval racing of Southern California. One of the tracks that he raced was Legion Ascot Speedway where he raced in the "B" class.
Sprint Car RacingEdit
In 1936, Webb and Jimmy Wilburn were offered rides in "Big Cars" in the Central States Racing Association (CSRA). Both accepted and moved to Indianapolis. Webb won the final CSRA race of the 1938 season at Winchester Speedway. Webb switched from the CSRA to the American Automobile Association (AAA) Midwest series in 1941 and finished fourth in the season points.
Racing was halted during World War II. In late 1947, he won three straight AAA Midwest races at Dayton Speedway, Salem Speedway, and Winchester. He won another race at Salem and finished second in 1947 AAA Midwest points to Johnny Shackleford. Webb started the 1948 season by winning seven times and finishing second in the first eight races. He missed a few races that season while running a Champ Car but still won the AAA Midwest championship. Webb started the 1949 season with a new sprint car that he co-owned; by June he had moved back to a car owned by Johnny Vance. He had a second-place finish at Michigan State Fairgrounds Speedway in Detroit and a third at the Syracuse Mile; he finished third in the final AAA Midwest points.
Champ Car RacingEdit
In 1939, he made a one-off American Automobile Association (AAA) Champ Car start at the Milwaukee Mile; he started last in the 17 car field and finished seventh. Webb made two Champ Car starts in 1946; he finished tenth at the Indiana State Fairgrounds and eighth at Milwaukee. Webb was offered a ride from Mutt Anderson into the 1948 Indianapolis 500 but did not qualify. At the last minute, he was offered another ride and qualified the Bromme dirt champ car 30th. His race ended early after an oil line failure; he finished 27th after completing 27 of 200 laps. Webb qualified 26th for the 1949 Indianapolis 500 but finished last (33rd) after he transmission broke before he could complete one lap. He switched to a car owned by Charles Bowes starting with the ninth race of the 1949 season after Mel Hansen was unable to race. Webb started on the pole position for Syracuse race before finishing third. He finished second at Detroit and eighth at Illinois State Fairgrounds Racetrack (Springfield Mile).
Webb finished the 1950 Indianapolis 500 in 20th place after the race was shorted due to rain on lap 138. He did not qualify for four races and finished 18th in his only other Champ Car race at Springfield. Webb got bumped out of the field for the 1952 Indianapolis 500 but made the field in a last-minute qualifying attempt for Bromme. He finished 22nd after having to retire with an oil leak late in the race. In the 1953 Indianapolis 500, he started 29th and finished 22nd. He did not qualify for five events and finished 15th in the event that he did qualify (Springfield). Bromme called Webb in another last-minute deal for the 1954 Indianapolis 500; he qualified 29th and finishing 30th. Webb failed to qualify for the 1955 Indianapolis 500.
Life After RacingEdit
After retiring from racing, Webb moved to Norwalk, California. He purchased earthmoving equipment and worked on the Los Angeles Zoo construction. He died at the age of 79 in McMinnville, Oregon.
Indianapolis 500 resultsEdit
World Championship career summaryEdit
The Indianapolis 500 was part of the FIA World Championship from 1950 through 1960. Drivers competing at Indy during those years were credited with World Championship points and participation. Spider Webb participated in 4 World Championship races but scored no World Championship points.
- "Travis Spider Webb" (pdf). National Sprint Car Hall of Fame. 1997. Retrieved April 18, 2021.
- Reed, Terry (2005). Indy: The Race and Ritual of the Indianapolis 500. Potomac Books, Inc. ISBN 978-1-59797-391-5.
- "Gallery: Indianapolis 500 in the 1940s". nwitimes.com. Retrieved 2020-03-19.
- "1939 Champ Car Results". Racing Refer. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "1946 Champ Car Results". Racing Reference. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "1948 Indianapolis 500 Results". Racing Reference. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "Spider Webb 1949 AAA Champ Car Series Results". Racing Reference. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "Spider Webb 1950 AAA Champ Car Series Results". www.racing-reference.info. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "1952 AAA Champ Car Results". Racing Reference. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "1953 AAA Champ Car results". Racing Reference. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "1954 AAA Champ Car results". Racing Reference. Retrieved April 24, 2021.
- "Travis Webb". Formula 1 Statistics. Retrieved 2020-03-19.
- Spider Webb Indy 500 Race Stats