May 30, 2011

100th Anniversary: Indianapolis 500 Mile Race

[Page: S3113]  GPO's PDF 


Mr. LUGAR (for himself and Mr. COATS) submitted the following resolution; which was considered and agreed to:

S. Res. 190

Whereas the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is the largest spectator sporting facility in the world, with more than 250,000 permanent seats;

Whereas founders Carl G. Fisher, Arthur C. Newby, Frank H. Wheeler, and James A. Allison pooled their resources in 1909 to build the Indianapolis Motor Speedway 5 miles from downtown Indianapolis as a testing ground to support the growing automotive industry of Indiana;

Whereas on August 14, 1909, the first motorized races, using motorcycles, took place on the recently completed 2.5-mile oval, which had a racing surface composed of crushed stone and tar;

Whereas on August 19, 1909, the first 4-wheeled automobile races at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway took place;

Whereas for 63 days in late 1909, 3,200,000 paving bricks, each weighing 9.5 pounds, were laid on top of the crushed stone and tar surface to upgrade the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, leading the facility to be nicknamed ``The Brickyard'';

Whereas a 3-foot horizontal strip of that original brick remains exposed at the start and finish line, known as the ``Yard of Bricks'';

Whereas on May 30, 1911, the first Indianapolis 500 Mile Race took place and was won by Ray Harroun at an average speed of 74.602 miles per hour;

Whereas the Indianapolis 500, the largest single-day spectator sporting event in the world, has occurred on every Memorial Day weekend since 1911, except during the involvement of the United States in world wars from 1917 through 1918 and 1942 through 1945;

Whereas in 1977, Janet Guthrie became the first woman to compete in the Indianapolis 500;

Whereas in 1991, Willy T. Ribbs became the first African-American driver to compete in the Indianapolis 500;

Whereas the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, by hosting the IZOD IndyCar Series, the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the MotoGP Series, and the Formula One Series, is the only facility in the world that has played host to these 4 elite worldwide racing series;

Whereas every May since 1981 the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has served as the backdrop for the annual Armed Forces Induction Ceremony, in which citizens of Indiana who have volunteered to serve in the Armed Forces are administered the oath of enlistment;

Whereas in 1987, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway was officially listed on the National Park Service list of National Historic Landmarks as the oldest continuously operated automobile racecourse; and

Whereas the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race has played an enormous part in shaping and defining the City of Indianapolis, the State of Indiana, United States motorsports, and the United States automobile industry, and is a great source of pride to all citizens of Indiana: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate recognizes the 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race.

(Senate - May 18, 2011)

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