Archive for the 'Inaugural' Category

FIRST SPEEDWAY RACE ON THIS DAY IN 1909

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The first race was held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, now the home of
the world’s most famous motor racing competition, the Indianapolis 500.

Built on 328 acres of farmland five miles northwest of Indianapolis, Indiana,
the speedway was started by local businessmen as a testing facility for
Indiana’s growing automobile industry. The idea was that occasional races
at the track would pit cars from different manufacturers against each other
and after seeing what these cars could do, spectators would presumably
head down to the showroom of their choice to get a closer look.

The rectangular two-and-a-half-mile track linked four turns, each exactly 440
yards from start to finish, by two long and two short straight sections. In that
first five-mile race on August 19, 1909, 12,000 spectators watched Austrian
engineer Louis Schwitzer win with an average speed of 57.4 miles per hour.

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Louis Schwitzer (1880 – 1967) winner of the inaugural
race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.        

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posted by Bob Karm in ANNIVERSARY,AUTO RACING,HISTORY,Inaugural,Motorsports,NEWSPAPER and have No Comments