Mario Andretti takes 102-year-old Muncie woman for ride around IMS

INDIANAPOLIS - A 102-year-old Muncie woman received the thrill of a lifetime when a racing legend took her for a trip around the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

It’s a story decades in the making, but on Tuesday, Edith Pittenger climbed into an IndyCar and sped around the track -- with the help of some friends and family.

IMAGES: 102-year-old gets ride of a lifetime

Pittenger was born in 1912, the year of the second Indianapolis 500.

Pittenger is a bit older now and things at the track move a bit faster, but with the help of racing legend Mario Andretti, she is certainly managing to keep up.

For the most part, Pittenger leads a quiet life. She likes to knit to keep her hands loose and she fondly remembers when she first drove a car at the age of 12.

"I would just jump in the car and the kids would ride on the running board and we'd go around the reformatory that's down at Pendleton where I was born," Pittenger said.

Now 90 years later, her need for speed persists and she's traded laps around a reformatory for laps around the IMS.

With Andretti as her escort and driver, the two suited up and drove off -- reaching speeds of 180 mph.

"I know people in their 70s and 80s who, I mean they’re bedridden, and they can't get around or hardly do anything, but I mean my goodness she's 102 and she's going 180 miles an hour at least in a race car," Pittenger's grandson Garett Cates said.

Several laps later, Pittenger crossed the finish line to the applause of the crowd -- all with a smile on her face.

Pittenger even ended the dream ride with a sip of milk to end the thrilling day that was 102 years in the making.

Follow Chance Walser on Twitter: @chancewalserrtv | Facebook: Chance Walser

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