Mauri Rose didn’t look anything like a racing car driver. Small in stature, he wore a bushy mustache, was rather quiet and smoked a pipe.
Rose made his first start at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1933 when he drove a two-man Studebaker all the way up to fourth place before his car’s engine failed on lap 125. Then in 1934, he finished second to “Wild Bill” Cummings by just 27 seconds.
In 1941 Rose went from 14th place to take the lead at 425 miles and he was never challenged. He and his col driver Davis were the last duel winners of the Indy 500.
In 1947 Rose's teammate Bill Holland had a comfortable two-mile lead in his No. 16 Blue Crown Special as the race entered its last 100 miles. Team owner Lou Moore gave his drivers the “E-Z” signal from the pits - Holland thought his second-placed teammate was running a lap behind him and eased up– but Moore then waved Rose around. Rose then drove on to his second 500 victory. Holland was more than a little upset at the unexpected outcome.
In 1948, the Rose-Holland 1-2 finish was repeated, although this time there was no cloud over it as Rose drove a steady race and took the win.