Wed July 8, 2009
The Life and Legend of Notable Tulsan Jack Zink: "To Indy and Beyond."
By Rich Fisher
Tulsa, Oklahoma – On our show today, we look at the life and legend of the late Jack Zink, the longtime Tulsa businessman, philanthropist, and championship racecar driver and owner. Our guest today is Dr. Bob Blackburn, the executive director of the Oklahoma Historical Society, who has recently published a biography of Zink, "To Indy and Beyond: The Life of Racing Legend Jack Zink." Zink, who died in 2005 at age 75, was fond of, and succeeded at, all kids of racing: stock cars, Formula 1 racecars, motorcycles, bicycles, sailboats, and so on. His cars won the Indy 500 in 1955 and 1956, and Zink himself (who won races at tracks all across the globe) was inducted into the Auto Racing Hall of Fame in 2004. Zink was also, of course, an accomplished industrialist who developed and led a local business in its remarkable transition into a world-class company. Ever the innovator, risk-taker, and idea man --- and always willing, as Blackburn puts it, to get his hands dirty while tinkering with things, as would a genuine "grease monkey" --- Zink was a unique figure in the history of Tulsa, and indeed in the history of international racing.