Few drive as fast as the Flying Dutchman. Even fewer look as good behind the wheel. Since climbing into his first 200-m.p.h.-plus Indy-type car in 1984, Luyendyk (pronounced LION-dike), 38, has copped some $5 million in purses, winning the Indianapolis 500 in 1990 and coming in third last year. This gentleman has also started a few engines with his turbocharged shag and flinty green eyes—including that of wife Mieke, 35, who admires “his naturalness. Even after a race, his hair all messed up, he still looks great.”
Arie learned of speed’s allure in his native Rosmalen, Holland, by joining his garage-owner dad at the track. Now living with his own son and daughter near Phoenix, he says, “Racing gives you a great sensation of being able to control a 750-h.p. car.” Less malleable is his 5’11” frame; he wishes he were “a little shorter, for getting in these very narrow cockpits. And I’d like smaller feet because I have problems working the pedals sometimes.” Luyendyk won’t downsize his mane, though. “I wear it long because I feel more confident.” He smiles. “The guys tease me and pull my hair—but some are trying to grow theirs a little.” Fashion your seat belts!