Gonzalo Rodríguez

Race car driver, Athlete

1972 – 1999


Who was Gonzalo Rodríguez?

Gonzalo "Gonchi" Rodríguez was a racing driver. He showed promise in Formula 3000 for three seasons, taking two wins in 1998 at Spa-Francorchamps and Nürburgring, winning the following season in Monaco and finishing third in both championships. Following a rotation of drivers as team mates to Al Unser Jr. in CART Penske Racing's second car, he was given his opportunity at the Detroit Grand Prix in 1999 and scored a point in his only race.

At the Laguna Seca Raceway raceway during the practice session for his second CART race, he was fatally injured in a crash. A stuck open throttle caused his car to overshoot the braking point, going off the track at more than 140 mph and slammed into a concrete barrier at the entry of the Corkscrew corner. The impact caused his car to flip over the barrier and land upside down on the other side of the wall. Gonzalo was killed instantly by a basilar skull fracture caused by the impact with the wall, which was lined by only a thin layer of tires. Because of the incident, runoff was installed at the end of the straight.

Gonzalo had a contract in place to compete in the 2000 CART championship with Patrick Racing.

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Jan 22, 1972
  • Uruguay
Lived in
  • Montevideo
Sep 11, 1999
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

on July 23, 2013


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