Journal: Will You Be Watching the Greatest Spectacle in Racing This Weekend?

Will You Be Watching the Greatest Spectacle in Racing This Weekend?

Michael Banovsky By Michael Banovsky
May 21, 2015
12 comments

There are three races that history has held above all others: the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Monaco Grand Prix, and the Indianapolis 500. For years, drivers from around the world participated in events around the world, before increasingly stringent sponsor and team demands left many of the world’s best drivers without the ability to try racing in other series.

We talk a lot about the first two races here at Petrolicious, but the Indy 500 deserves just as much coverage. Let’s start with the only driver to win all three of these iconic races: Graham Hill.

With a career that spanned from 1954 until his untimely death in an airplane crash little more than two decades later in 1975, Hill’s wins around the world come from sheer determination: many modern observers state that the driver’s work ethic enabled him to quickly excel in different disciplines—the Indy 500 is no exception.

Still attracting some of the world’s best drivers, the race is held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, located at the heart of Indianapolis, Indiana, a 2.5-mile oval famed for its incredible average speeds of above 230 mph (370 km/h) in the traditional Memorial Day race. As a result, the annual 500 mile open wheel race can be finished in as little as 2 hours and 40 minutes, as Tony Kanaan’s 2013 win demonstrates. Average speed, including pit stops? 187.433 mph (301 km/h).

Held each year since 1911, early speed merchants used it as the (very public) proving ground for technology like four-wheel-drive, aerodynamic aids, and mid-engined cars. Take a look at these iconic moments from the race’s past and don’t forget to tune in this Sunday.

Images Source: indianapolismotorspeedway.com 

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ichaJimmy ArataJon BoppChristopher GayKevin Tossens Recent comment authors
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icha

Hey, this is very nice and informative article and please keep posting the amazing article like this thanks for sharing with us.
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Jimmy Arata
Jimmy Arata

Indy 500 was great again. I have an appreciation for the drivers skills after taking a 2 seater ride twice the last two years. Truly an amazing ability to drive and survive the race. Monaco is the same skill set, but come on, no place to pass. Quite a history, but the race is a snoozer for the casual viewer. The 600 . . . pass. Cars and drivers are second to none, just not interested.

Jon Bopp
Jon Bopp

This will be my 52 Indy 500 and despite all the negative comments, in my view nothing has changed. It is now, as it’s always been, 33 drivers who will risk everything to win this race, the most coveted trophy in all of motorsports history. This race is real drama and most years a spectator goes through almost every human emotion. The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the finest racetrack in the world bar none. It’s an experience unrivaled in motorsports and watching it on TV doesn’t begin to do it justice. This start of the race is the most exciting… Read more »

Christopher Gay
Christopher Gay

We’ll be bouncing around between Indy, F1, and NASCAR. They all have something to offer and if you think they all don’t give and take from each other with regards to technology or advertising, you are mistaken. I mean, F1 has taken so much from NASCAR in recent years, it’s just crazy.

Aside from the fun inherent in the principality, the best racing action will likely be at the Indy 500 (unless some rain finds Monaco).

Kevin Tossens
Kevin Tossens

Yes I will!

But at Spa Francorchamps for Classics Days.

The Best motoring event in Belgium and one of the best in the world!

Douglas Anderson
Douglas Anderson

In a word, NO ! ( unfortunately) I would be glued to the tube for all of them and maybe even watch the start and finish of the NAPCAR ( we call it NAPCAR in our house because it’s SOOOO boring ,we only like the start and the last 25 laps 🙂 we nap in between 🙂 BUT; I am going to be driving from NC. to DETROIT to move my mother in law down here this weekend so I will be searching the radio for Indycar up dates as we tootle along through the mountains of VA, WVA (… Read more »

David
David

Yes I will!!!

Benjamin Shahrabani
Benjamin Shahrabani

I’ve never been a huge fan of oval racing. I much prefer events like LeMans…or vintage racing. It just feels much more exciting to me like there’s more at stake than…just circling an oval.

Christopher Gay
Christopher Gay

This year I think you should watch them “just circle an oval” at the Indy 500. I’d say there’s plenty at stake when you’re lapping at 230mph. Especially after the countless hours (years) and dollars of preparation, practice, and qualifying. I watch my share of motorsport, and frankly, on any given day I think you will find some of the best wheel to wheel racing in Indy Cars, CART, or Champ, or whatever they call those semi spec open wheelers these day. The driver pool is of high caliber and I’d say it is much more interesting than any F1… Read more »

Nate
Nate

As much as I enjoy the 24hrs, you can’t beat the excitement of the Indy 500. It really is one of the best races you can watch in person.

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

Indy 500 – Absolutely not . The Indy 500 having become a mere shadow of its once glorious former self ever since CART and Indy Car parted ways .

Monaco – Yes but with serious reservations . The way things are going in F1 this year along with the debacle of Thursday’s practice I may wind up cutting my viewing short despite all of Monaco’s scenery and intrigue . The PBS special about the Prince of Monaco last night though sure was fascinating

Nate
Nate

The 500 is much better now than it ever has been. 2013 had 68 lead changes, no other race comes close to that.