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06 December 2008

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Indianapolis Motor Speedway Seating Chart

Indianapolis Motor Speedway History

Address: Indianapolis, IN

Indianapolis Motor Speedway


No other word has more meaning in the history or auto racing in the United States, and since 1994 NASCAR has been carving out its own piece of that legacy.

It’s hard to imagine how thrilling it must have been in 1992 when a small group of stock-car drivers got a chance to drive their cars around this 2.5-miles of hallowed ground.

That event, billed as a Goodyear tire test, was the first time stock cars had been on track at Indy, and stars like Dale Earnhardt long viewed that as one of the highlights of their legendary careers.

Imagine what it must have been like for men who grew up with racing in their blood who never could have dared to dream of racing their stock cars on what had been territory only trod by “open-wheel cars.”

Indianapolis Motor Speedway is to racing what Yankee Stadium is to baseball and Lambeau Field is to football. For nearly a century, Indianapolis Motor Speedway has been the place where champions become heroes.

It began in the spring of 1909, when more than 300 acres of farmland northwest of downtown Indianapolis became the site for a year-round testing facility finance by four local businessmen and pioneers in the auto industry. Race meets were held so manufacturers could show off their products to potential customers.

Two 440-yard straightaways were linked by four turns, banked at 9 degrees, and short straigthaways to create Indy’s 2.5-mile classic oval that still holds the same shape today.

In 1911, the track’s owners decided that holding only one race each year, on Memorial Day, and paying a huge purse to its winner would be the best way to go forward. Thusly, the Indianapolis 500 was born. And from 1916 until 1994, no other race was ever held at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Until NASCAR came to town.

Brickyard 400 gave NASCAR fans their chance to buy tickets to see racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and they’ve done that by the tens of thousands ever since former Indiana resident Jeff Gordon won the inaugural stock-car event.

The NASACR race’s original name came from more than 350,000 bricks that were used to pave the track’s surface soon after it first opened. The first asphalt didn’t go down until 1936, and even though most of the track was covered with blacktop by 1941 it wasn’t until 1961 that the remainder of the bricks were covered.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the largest sports venue in America, with crowds of more than 250,000 in attendance at ever running of race that, beginning in 2005, has been renamed the Allstate 400

There’s still one three-foot wide section of bricks exposed on the racing surface at Indianapolis Motor Speedway - right at the start-finish line that the greatest drivers in the world now cross during the Indianapolis 500, the Allstate 400 and the U.S. Grand Prix, the only Forumla One world driving championship event held in the United States each year.

Gordon is a four-time winner of the Cup race, with Earnhardt, Dale Jarrett, Ricky Rudd, Bobby Labonte, Bill Elliott and Kevin Harvick also on the list of its winners.

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