National Dirt
Wednesday, 25 August 2021


Robin Miller is all smiles prior to the start of the 1980 Hut 100 where he qualified 5th out of a field of 72 cars. Robin Miller is all smiles prior to the start of the 1980 Hut 100 where he qualified 5th out of a field of 72 cars. Gene Crucean Photo


By: Richie Murray – USAC Media

Speedway, Indiana (August 25, 2021)………Robin Miller, sports writer, journalist, reporter and even a regular as a driver on the USAC National Midget tour during the 1970s-80s, passed away on August 25, 2021 to cancer.  He was 71 years old.

Miller had spent more than half a century on the inside of the sport of auto racing, first as a “stooge” on the crew for Jim Hurtubise at the Indianapolis 500.  By 1969, he was covering the USAC and IndyCar beat, as well as a variety of other sports, for the Indianapolis Star newspaper, a position which he held through 1999.

In 1971, he worked on the pit crew for Bill Finley’s team at the Indianapolis 500.  Shortly thereafter, Miller purchased a Formula Ford from Andy Granatelli and kickstarted a driving career which ultimately led him to the USAC National Midget division in 1975 after acquiring a car from driver Merle Bettenhausen.

Miller made his first career USAC National Midget feature start on June 7, 1975, at the Champaign-Urbana Fairgrounds in Champaign, Illinois, finishing 12th.  His two best USAC National Midget feature results came indoors, finishing 8th at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, Utah on Aug. 28, 1976, and 8th again at the Scope Arena in Norfolk, Virginia on January 8, 1977.

However, it was a single-car qualifying run that Miller was most proud of.  At the 1980 Hut 100 at the Terre Haute (Ind.) Action Track, Miller qualified 5th in a field of 72 midgets, which put him in the middle of row two for the three-wide start.  To his inside was Stan Fox and to his outside was Steve Chassey.

Miller ultimately made 39 career USAC National Midget feature starts between 1975 and 1982, his last coming in 1982 at Godfrey (Ill.) Speedway.

His journalistic career later took him to television where he was a reporter for ESPN2’s RPM2Night, a co-host on numerous occasions for Speed Channel’s Wind Tunnel, a journalist for RACER Magazine and a reporter for NBC Sports’ coverage of IndyCar racing.

Miller was recently honored by the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America in a special ceremony at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on August 13.