Indianapolis Motor Speedway


The 2 1/2-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway was built in 1909 as a proving ground for American auto manufacturers. Car dealer Carl Fisher initiated the project after his touring car broke down three times during a road trip from Dayton to Indianapolis. Joining him as owners-investors were James Allison, founder of Allison Engineering; Arthur Newby, president of the National Motor Vehicle Company, and Frank Wheeler of the Wheeler-Scbebler Carburetor Company. Engineering innovations first tested in the Indy 500 races include balloon tires, ethyl gasoline, and the rearview mirror. Many of the winning cars are displayed in the Hall of Fame Museum.

Activity Details

Activity Type:Trips and Destinations
Discipline:Other
Topic(s):
Grade:K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12
Time:Full day

Fun Fact:(Not a fun fact this time.) A late tar-oil delivery meant the Speedway's macadam surface wasn't cured in time for the first race. A total disaster, three people were killed. A new surface was laid, using 3.2 million paving bricks; hence the Speedway's nickname, "The Brickyard." A swath of these bricks is still visible at the start/finish line.
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