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Are We There Yet

No Handbills or Bullets; But Umbrellas Allowed at Indy
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By Carol Einarsson | 07/22/2010
Category: Are We There Yet
 

Jeff Gordon won the inaugural race at The Brickyard in 1994, and has won three additional times since then.

Juan Pablo Montoya won at Indy in 2000 in the IndyCar Series. He's also the only driver to race in NASCAR, IndyCar, and the US Grand Prix at this track.

Only five current full-time drivers are winners at Indy in the Cup series.

Jimmie Johnson and Kevin Harvick have both won from the pole here.

Chevy has won 11 of 16 races at Indy, so Ford's hope of a slump-ending win is probably even less than it was at Chicago. Ford hasn't won a race at Indy since 1999.

In the sixteen years since stock cars arrived at The Brickyard, the purse has tripled. It started at $2.8 million and is now $8.4

Mark Martin has ten top-10s and no wins at Indy. It's one of only four tracks where he's never won. He does, however, have a pole and two second-place finishes here.

Jeff Burton has driven more miles than anyone at this track, more than 6,300.

Bill Elliott (at 46) is the oldest race winner for the Brickyard 400, so if you watch NASCAR Smarts on SPEED this week, don't be fooled into guessing "Harry Gant" when they ask the question.

Oh, and Jeff Gordon (at 23, half the age of Bill Elliott!) was the youngest, so don't guess Kyle Busch when they ask that other winning-age question.

Rick Mast won the very first pole at Indy.

The track restricts bringing in weapons OR ammunition, though one would wonder why you'd need ammo without an instrument for distribution.

What can you take into the stands at Indy that virtually every other track prohibits? Umbrellas! No word yet on whether you can bring your vuvuzela.

"Handbills, leaflets, flyers, pamphlets and samples of any kind are not to be distributed or placed on the grounds without the express written approval of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway." Does anyone under the age of 45 even know what a handbill is? And wouldn't it suffice to simply say flyers? "No, Mr. Official, this ISN'T a flyer; it's a 'handbill'."

Despite the dartboard of Jeff Gordon's home towns, Tony Stewart was actually the first Indiana native to win The Brickyard 400 (or even ANY race at Indy, since the 1940 Indy 500 when Wilbur Shaw of Shelbyville won).

The racetrack is actually in Speedway, Indiana, and in fact they even claim to be the originator of the word "Speedway" citing that until the track opened, the word had never before been used. Now it's a whole city!

From 2005-2009, the annual race was officially called the Allstate 400 at The Brickyard, though it probably wasn't the best investment Allstate ever made, since most folks still referred to it as The Brickyard 400.

In 2004, Jeff Gordon won the longest race of the 16 thanks to NASCAR's Green-White-Checker rule, and a late-race caution. That same race holds the record for most cautions, with 13.

Wondering just how big Indy is? Inside the dimensions of the oval, you could fit ALL of the following - AT THE SAME TIME! Vatican City, the Colosseum in Rome, the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (where they play Wimbledon), Rose Bowl Stadium, Yankee Stadium, and Churchill Downs. Take a look at the map here.

How many bricks does it take to cover a 2.5 mile oval? About 3.2 million.

Bricks are mentioned in the Bible, so clearly God planned for Indy. Okay, okay, it didn't exactly go that way. Actually, the first mention of bricks is when they were building a city and "a tower to reach to the heavens" so they could make a name for themselves. God didn't like that much, so He scattered them all over the earth. Eventually enough of them landed in Indiana to make a flat track. Apparently they learned to keep their bricks close to the ground, and that's why there's no banking. You heard it here first.

 

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Comments:
BNP
07/19/2010 8:31 am (1)
Love your last paragraph. Glad to see your sense of humor rise to the top like cream. Yes they still sell raw milk where I live.

Bill B
07/22/2010 6:10 am (2)
Ok Carol, you can lose "vuvuzela" from your vocabulary now. Soccer is over. You really like that word don't you? I've noticed it sprinkled throughout your writings ever since it bubbled to the top of the news a month or so ago.

Regarding the size of Indy... Back in the late 80's USA Today had a piece on the Indy 500 and asked the question; "How many of the major league baseball stadiums could fit in the infield?". The answer was all of them (they've added a couple of teams since then so I am not sure that is still true).
giluvracing
07/22/2010 7:05 am (3)
If you haven't been to Indy, you owe it to yourself to go. The place is gorgeous! There's not a twig, or a rock, or a blade of grass out of place in the whole entire facility. I've been to three races at IMS (the first two Brickyard 400s and the 2007 Indy 500), and it just blew me away. Indianapolis puts anything and evertyhing that Bruton Smith built to shame. I'm not kidding.

Indy is also the only (oval) track I know where you don't need a special ticket to get into the infield. Just walk through one of the tunnels. You can wander the paddock, check out the road course, and visit the museum which is well worth the admission on its own!

Three holes of the Brickyard Crossing golf course are located in the infield. The course used to be on the PGA Seniors Tour, but I don't think it is, anymore.

"Ford's hope of a slump-ending win is probably even less than it was last week." Last week, there wasn't a Sprint Cup race. Carol, I think you just divided by zero.

This race marks the start of a three-race break from cookie-cutters. Indy is followed by Pocono, and then by Watkins Glen. Next trioval snoozefest: Michigan.

Several years ago, some friends of mine lived in Speedway, IN. If someone sent mail to you in Speedway, or Indianapolis, it would still get to you. I don't know of any other place in this country where you can decide what to call your home town.

Don't forget, when setting your DVRs, the race is on ESPN this week. Goodbye "The Closer" promos; hello "Wipeout" promos.

Have a fun weekend!!

--Mike.
possum
07/22/2010 2:51 pm (4)
Hi Carol,

You wrote: "Juan Pablo Montoya won at Indy in 2000 in the IndyCar Series. He's also the only driver to race in NASCAR, IndyCar, and the US Grand Prix at this track."

Someone get that man a motorcycle. Let him try his luck against the Doctor. He's got until August 29th to figure out how to ride it.

Also you wrote: "What can you take into the stands at Indy that virtually every other track prohibits? Umbrellas! No word yet on whether you can bring your vuvuzela."

LOL! I'd guess we're the one sport where vuvuzelas would not cause any annoyance, or even be noticed.

And you wrote: ""Handbills, leaflets, flyers, pamphlets and samples of any kind are not to be distributed or placed on the grounds without the express written approval of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway." Does anyone under the age of 45 even know what a handbill is? And wouldn't it suffice to simply say flyers? "No, Mr. Official, this ISN'T a flyer; it's a 'handbill'." "

LOL again. Given that they've been racing for 101 years at Indy, I'd guess that restriction probably dates back to the time when handbills were common.

John
possum
07/22/2010 2:57 pm (5)
@ giluvracing:

If I remember correctly, there used to be 9 holes of the golf course in the infield, before they built the road course.

As for town names, there are many places like that - for instance, I can use Ft Lauderdale or Sunrise FL as my address. It's pretty common when there's a big city with several smaller suburbs.

John
Carol
07/22/2010 9:05 pm (6)
Bill B,
Yes, I do love the word vuvuzela. And football isn't over. What's amusing to me is that vuvuzelas aren't new either, but Americans have so little interest in the sport that they only now heard them. I mentioned it in this column because one race track had prohibited them.

giluvracing,
No bad math, just slow updates. The article was written (and posted in the widget) last week, and at that time, the "last week" reference was correct. I simply overlooked updating it for today's posting. You missed the other time reference which was a mention of NASCAR Smarts "next week" which I'll also update now. Thanks. :-)

C
Bill B
07/23/2010 6:07 am (7)
Carol,
I remember seeing vuvuzelas in the mid and late 70's around here but I haven't seen them again until this year's soccer event in Africa. We just called them "horns" back then. I was just joking anyway so you go right on mentioning them in your articles for as long as you like. I just thought it was funny to call you out on it.
giluvracing
07/23/2010 7:28 am (8)
@C:

I don't watch NASCAR Smarts, so I'll claim ignorance in missing that one. I've seen it a couple of times, and it looks like a fun show. The questions are a lot harder than I'd expect a puff piece from the track to be. I'll have to ask my nephew (who is even more of a trivia nerd than myself, if that's possible) if he's seen it and how he think he'd do on it.

I'd DVR it, but I'm having enough trouble keeping up with "Pretty Little Liars" as it is, these days.

Although I didn't care for the constant drone of the vuvuzelas at the few World Cup matches that I tuned into, I kinda like the concept of them. What better way to annoy sports fans on a global scale?

But...what would be the point of banning them at a NASCAR track? It's not like you're gonna hear them on TV.... Maybe they're afraid that someone will use one as a weapon? But, they sell flagpoles at the track. Go figure.

I'll go off and ponder that now....

--Mike.
eddo
07/23/2010 2:24 pm (9)
LOL @ the concept of annoying fans on a global scale!

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