Happy Birthday: Ribbs, Eury Jr., Schumacher, Hildenbrand, Marlin

FULLThere are a ton of birthdays to celebrate on January 3, spanning some of the greatest and most interesting drivers in motorsport.

Remembered: January 3, 1932. Clifton “Coo Coo” Marlin. Four-time track champion at the Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway, Coo Coo Marlin was a short track racing hero in the Tennessee area. In 165 starts spanning 14 years, Marlin scored zero wins in the NASCAR Grand National Series, however, did accululate 51 top ten finishes. Marlin passed away in 2005 and son Sterling honored his father’s passing by running the number 14 in the 2006 NASCAR Cup Series for Ginn Racing.

January 3, 1956. Willy T. Ribbs. Former CART racer Willy T. Ribbs turns 57 today. Ribbs raced in CART for various teams during the early 1990s. Ribbs also made three NASCAR Cup Series starts and ran the full 2001 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season. Ribbs floated around various forms of racing throughout his career. From stock cars to Formula 1, Ribbs found his best success in SCCA Trans-Am, winning five races in 1983.

January 3, 1969. Michael Schumacher. Seven championships, 91 wins and 68 poles. Michael Schumacher, one of motorsport’s best all-time drivers, starts his second retirement from Formula 1 at the age of 43.

January 3, 1973. Tony Eury Jr. After spending his entire career working for an Earnhardt, Tony Eury Jr., takes his crew chiefing talents to Swan Racing and driver David Stremme in 2013. Today, Eury Jr. turns 40.

January 3, 1988. J.R. Hildenbrand. IZOD IndyCar Series start J.R. Hildenbrand turns 25 today. Hildebrand was within one turn of winning the 2011 Indianapolis 500 when he hit the outside wall on Turn 4, and was passed in the final 200 yards by Dan Wheldon, finishing second.