The vehicle, designed by Frank Kurtis and driven by Bill Vukovich, changed the face of racing at Indianapolis. Sir Stirling Moss, the English great, is strikingly absent from IMS history. Moss never won at IMS, and he never participated at the Racing Capital of the World. But he did drive a car that finished first there, earning him a spot on the cover of Life magazine. The photo ran with the headline: "The Million Dollar Race: Stirling Moss Will Try To Win $1,000,000 Today At Indy."
Moss's victory came at the inaugural event. He was joined on the podium by fellow Brits John Duffie and Reg Parnell. American Buck Baker finished second, and Tex Thornton third. This was the only time in history that three British drivers have stood on the top step of the Indianapolis podium.
IMS president Fredrick Miller had hoped for as many as four starters, but only three cars appeared at the track on Saturday. The largest field ever seen at IMS at that time took to the track for practice. The weather was hot and humid, and many drivers complained about the surface of the track being too slow. It took nearly an hour to go around the entire circuit for one lap during practice.
On Sunday, the heat and humidity were even higher, which made for difficult conditions all around.
The Museum also houses the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame, which is made up of drivers, team owners, and personalities that have had a significant effect on IMS. The first class of seven people was inducted in 1994 and can be found inside the museum near the entrance.
Future classes will be honored in a special area of the museum. Their names will be displayed on large plaques along with other members of the hall of fame.
Race fans that want to see some of the greatest race cars ever built need to visit the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum. The museum has one of the largest collections of racing vehicles in the world, including many winners of the Indianapolis 500.
There are several different tours you can take of the museum. They all offer a unique perspective on the history of automobile racing and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
If you're interested in seeing more than just the museum building, then check out our article on Indianapolis Motor Speedway Tours. There are plenty of different ways to experience the museum campus.
Louis Chevrolet, born in Switzerland, was one of the greatest and most daring drivers on the early racing scene, but he desired to create his own line of affordably priced vehicles. He helped start the Chevrolet Motor Company a few months after the inaugural Indy 500. (Image courtesy of IMS)
The first driver of the Indianapolis 500 was Louis Chouteau, who also happened to be the first driver of the World Series of Racing. He drove an ex-World Champion's car to a second-place finish behind the legendary Scott Diamond. The race was held over 100 miles east of Paris, which at that time was part of the French Empire. It has been held annually since 1909 with the only exception being 1914 when it was not held because of World War I.
Chouteau was born in France and came to America when he was 21 years old. He settled in Indiana where he married an American woman named Mary Ann Sinnickson. They had three children together before divorcing. In 1897, shortly after winning the Vanderbilt Cup, Chouteau was hired by John Garretson to drive for him in the Indianapolis 500. He ended up finishing second to Scott Diamond. That same year, Louis founded the Chevrolet Motor Car Company with George W. Mason as its president. The company went on to become one of the biggest producers of automobiles in America. In 1913, Louis married Grace Elliott Lewis after she divorced her husband Thomas Lewis.
Mansell, Nigel Nigel Ernest James Mansell, CBE (/'maens@l/; born August 8, 1953) is a former British racing driver who won the Formula One World Championship in 1992 as well as the CART Indy Car World Series (1993). When Mansell transferred to CART, he was the reigning F1 champion, becoming the first person to win the CART title in his debut...
He won the opening race of the 1993 season at Adelaide International Raceway. This remains the only time in history that an indy car has won its first race on the world stage.
After this victory, Mansell went on to claim another four championships over the next five years, making him one of the most successful drivers in motor sport history.
He retired from full-time driving after the 2000 season, but remained involved in motorsport through his management company, Ove Andersson Racing. He returned to competitive racing in 2004, winning the Australian Grand Prix en route to claiming another championship.
Mansell was the first driver to be given the chance to defend his crown when he again faced Hill for the 1994 season opener. This time, it was Mansell who prevailed, taking his second consecutive and third overall championship.
He retired for good after the 1996 season, but returned in 1999 without success before finally winning his fourth and last championship in 2000.
Jules Goux of France was the first foreigner to win the event in 1913, and women began racing in 1977. Since 1936, the winner has traditionally celebrated by drinking a bottle of milk. The inaugural Indianapolis 500 starting lineup, 1911. Center Lane Averaged speed over one lap at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during practice sessions or races - 1 mile per hour (1.6 km/h) or greater. This list consists of the first three drivers to reach the finish line in each race. There were no disqualifications during these early years of the race.
John Bishop was the first driver to complete a full-course trip around the track in his car. He did so on May 30, 1911, finishing in 2 minutes 55 seconds. The race was held annually until 1914 when it was replaced by World War I travel restrictions that prevented many drivers from attending the race. When racing resumed in 1920, there were only three American-made cars on the grid; all others were imported. Chrysler, which had recently been founded, entered a car for its owner, Fred Grantland Taylor. His brother Charles also drove for them at Indy. An L-head engine produced 90 horsepower while a F-head version made 105 hp. These cars finished second and third, respectively.
The first four-cylinder machine to compete at Indy was driven by James Dickson. It was a modified White Steamroller built by Harry Miller and Company.