April 8, 1916 – Bob Burman’s death inspires racecar safety

Robert (Bob) R. Burman was a born racer. He took the checkered flag at the Prest-O-Lite Trophy Race in 1909 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the precursor to the Indy 500. He would go on to race in the first two Indy 500s in 1911 and 1912. Burman was killed on this day in 1916 when his open-cockpit Peugeot rolled over during a race in Corona, California, also taking the lives of three spectators and seriously injured five others. Following his death two of Burman’s friends, Barney Oldfield and Harry Arminius Miller, were inspired to build a safer racecar. The pair are credited with inventing what is now referred to as the roll cage. They took their invention one step further, building a completely enclosed race car in 1917, which they dubbed the Golden Submarine. Bob BurmanThe Golden Submarine

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