IRL races into flood-plagued Iowa

June 20, 2008
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
IowaDespite flooding which has ravaged the area, officials at the Iowa Speedway—30 miles east of Des Moines—expect the Indy Racing League race there to be sold out Sunday.

“Track officials are expecting another strong showing,” said IRL spokesman John Griffin as he surveyed the area around the track this morning. “There are about 35,000 permanent seats at the track that are already sold out and track officials as we speak are contemplating adding temporary seats.”

Temporary seats and standing-room only admission could bring attendance to more than 45,000, Iowa Speedway officials said. This is the second year the IRL has raced in Iowa, and Griffin said it is proving to be a burgeoning market.

“The reception we have gotten here has been absolutely fantastic,” Griffin said. “We think this is going to continue to be a very strong market for us.”

Last year, about 17,000 attended qualifications for the Iowa race, and Griffin expects at least that many this year. Qualifications will be held tomorrow afternoon and the race, which will be televised on ABC, will go green at 1 p.m. Sunday.

IRL drivers hit the ground in Iowa early, several of them canvassing the state to help with the flood relief effort. Several major cities and highways have been underwater for more than a week. Ed Carpenter, A.J. Foyt IV and Bruno Junqueira worked with Red Cross employees and volunteers handing out supplies to area residents hit by this month’s record rains. The IRL raised more than $60,000 for Iowa flood victims.

Interstate 80, a main artery to and from the Iowa Speedway, opened late Monday afternoon, and the track was deemed fit for racing.

“The immediate area around the track is dry as dry can be,” Griffin said. “People up here seem very excited that we’re here. I think they’re ready to come out to the track and get their minds off of the challenges they’ve been dealing with.”
  • Just got back from Iowa and I must say that the area around the track was actually dryer than it was for the race in '07 (when there were huge sections of mud in the parking areas). That being said, I drove from Chicago to Newton and you could see lakes in some of the fields along the way that simply weren't supposed to be there. People who stayed in Des Moines said it was crawling with FEMA officials. I think the really bad flooding was in Cedar Rapids and you just didn't see it over near the race. You saw it a lot on the local news and it was very sad to see how many people had been displaced from their homes. It was a really nice thing for the Target Chip Ganassi boys to donate their winnings to the flood victims.

Post a comment to this blog

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
  1. I am a Lyft driver who is a licensed CDL professional driver. ALL Lyft drivers take pride in providing quality service to the Indianapolis and surrounding areas, and we take the safety of our passengers and the public seriously.(passengers are required to put seat belts on when they get in our cars) We do go through background checks, driving records are checked as are the personal cars we drive, (these are OUR private cars we use) Unlike taxi cabs and their drivers Lyft (and yes Uber) provide passengers with a clean car inside and out, a friendly and courteous driver, and who is dressed appropriately and is groomed appropriately. I go so far as to offer mints, candy and/or small bottle of water to the my customers. It's a mutual respect between driver and passenger. With Best Regards

  2. to be the big fish in the little pond of IRL midwest racin' when yer up against Racin' Gardner

  3. In the first sentance "As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss are build quality & price." need a way to edit

  4. As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss is build quality & price. First none of these places is worth $1100 for a one bedroom. Downtown Carmel or Keystone at the Crossing in Indy. It doesn't matter. All require you to get in your car to get just about anywhere you need to go. I'm in one of the Carmel apartments now where after just 2.5 short years one of the kitchen cabinet doors is crooked and lawn and property maintenance seems to be lacking my old Indianapolis apartment which cost $300 less. This is one of the new star apartments. As they keep building throughout the area "deals" will start popping up creating shoppers. If your property is falling apart after year 3 what will it look like after year 5 or 10??? Why would one stay here if they could move to a new Broad Ripple in 2 to 3 years or another part of the Far Northside?? The complexes aren't going to let the "poor" move in without local permission so that's not that problem, but it the occupancy rate drops suddenly because the "Young" people moved back to Indy then look out.

  5. Why are you so concerned about Ace hardware? I don't understand why anyone goes there! Every time ive gone in the past, they don't have what I need and I end up going to the big box stores. I understand the service aspect and that they try to be helpful but if they are going to survive I think they might need to carry more specialty parts.