Catching up with Salt Walther

Posted by Iannucci | 8/16/2007 | 5 comments »
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You may or may not recall David “Salt” Walther, and if you do remember him it’s likely for either being the only man to finish Dead Last three times at the Indy 500 or for surviving a spectacular crash at the start of the 1973 Indianapolis 500. He also raced everything from stock cars to hydroplane boats, so if you’re old enough you may have seen him at any number of events.

Wonder if Salt ever got to meet former Memphis Showboats coach Pepper Rodgers. Does anyone else think about things like this?

At any rate, Salt’s goin’ to jail. Attention Deadbeat Dads: better pay that child support.

Former Indianapolis 500 driver David Walther has been sentenced to 26 months in prison for nonsupport of dependents and violating terms of an earlier sentence.

The 59-year-old owes more than $21,000 in child support, according to the Warren County prosecutor's office.

Walther, who raced in the Indianapolis 500 seven times, had earlier convictions for nonsupport, child endangering, and charges related to painkilling drugs. (MORE from
And you thought Little Al had problems. Sheesh.

This would be probably a good time to mention that last month Al Unser Jr pled “no contest” to his DUI in Las Vegas back in January, and according to his lawyer (and again) “He hasn't had a drop of alcohol since this happened.” So see, there is some good news after all.


  1. xanderbark // June 05, 2008 6:11 AM  

    I remember Salt from our weekend together when he was racing in Australia in the 70's From the info on the internet his attitude to life and money has not changed.It was curiosity that got me to google his name but I don't think i have missed much.

  2. Steele // September 04, 2008 12:30 PM  

    I went to Centerville High School with Salt, class of 1966. We double dated to the senior prom together, and were on the track team together. He was a good pole vaulter and through shot put. I was a hurdler.

    Salt did have a wild streak in him. His father was wealthy and they had several high performance vehicles.

    Salt was one of the most fun people I have ever known. I'm sorry that he's had some tough luck. I wish him well.

  3. steve hale // April 07, 2009 5:44 PM  

    I met Salt in jail after his bullshit conviction for evading police in Greene County. They never caught him. He turned himself in and now is serving time in Hocking correctional. It is totally bogus. Salt has lived thru good and bad and is still a survivor. It is what it is, or so he tells me. Look for a book, movie and who knows what else, if he survives the jail thing

  4. Anonymous // May 06, 2009 7:58 PM  

    I've been a fan since '73. Watched him qualify 34th during a comback in the late 80's or early 90's. A movie would be cool. IMDB says he appeared in Dukes of Hazzard. Good Luck Salt

  5. colmkarter // February 15, 2010 9:19 AM  

    "Salt"...wonder how he got his nickname? What a story, a travesty of a man who essentially became unemployable and still has been incarcerated for being a so-called 'deadbeat dad'. And a resilient man despite his extraordinary trials. Now in his 60's he will not be released until 2012, 7 February. He has no email in prison but can receive snail mail to David Walther at Hocking Institute, Snake Hollow Road, Nelsonville, Ohio, 45764. Must have his Inmate Number A557710 on the address. Stay strong Salt, when you are out alot of fans and friends will assist you. Colm, Canada