Indianapolis 500 and Letters and Opinion

Race has lost its magic

May 29, 2010

I hope [Bill Benner’s May 17 column is] right and that the new management at the Speedway finds ways to bring back the “luster” of the old 500s. But it just doesn’t appear that way.

Look around the city. You see very few “Welcome Race Fans” signs. In years past, pennants and signage were on every street corner in the city. Indianapolis citizens were proud of the Motor Speedway and all of its traditions and looked forward to celebrating with them each year. They welcomed visitors from around the world to share and enjoy this city for a few days each May.

But now the enthusiasm and excitement seems to be gone with all of the changes. People have a lackluster feel about the race. Sometimes change is good and is necessary. But to Indianapolis changing the old traditions of the 500 is like the changes to the—dare I say it—state basketball playoffs. Where are the crowds?

You have to wonder if the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is eventually headed down the same path as another famous landmark on West 16th Street—old Victory Field Ballpark. How ironic that would be if the Speedway also became a junkyard for old cars! How sad for the city. How sad for the Hulman family.

Jeannie Raymann

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