Beloved Quilt Lady Presents Quilt to Chicagoland Speedway
Jeanetta Holder, 78, retired her racing aspirations long ago. Janet Guthrie could race, she said. Holder would do the sewing.
So, in 1976, the woman who was born the day of the Indianapolis 500 and made her own racecars out of tobacco sticks and lard cans as a child in Kentucky decided she’d show her support to motorsports’ biggest stars another way: through Quilting.
In 34 years of sewing, she’s made quilts for the biggest names in motorsports: Al Unser; A.J. Foyt; Rick Mears; Dale Earnhardt; Jeff Gordon; Jimmie Johnson; Tony Stewart…and the list goes on.
Holder has made a quilt for every winner of the Indy 500 since 1976, when she gave Johnny Rutherford the first one. She’s made a quilt for every winner of the Brickyard 400 since Jeff Gordon in 1994. The “Miscellaneous” section of the list she keeps of those who have received a quilt reads like a “Who’s Who” of racing.
On Saturday, Holder presented the first quilt she’s ever made for a track to Chicagoland Speedway President Craig Rust during pre-race ceremonies for IZOD IndyCar®’s PEAK® Antifreeze and Motor Oil INDY 300.
“All I can say is thanks for the memories,” said Holder, who now splits her time between Kentucky, Avon, Ind. and as many racing events as she can fit into her schedule.
The staff of Chicagoland Speedway is both thankful and proud to have such a wonderful piece of history.