Don't miss out on the Indianapolis 500
Started in 1911, the Indianapolis 500 is among the most illustrious motor sports in the world. The race and the festivities surrounding it bring in more than 1 million visitors every year, and people come from around to world to witness what has come to be known as the "Greatest Spectacle in Racing." The famous race takes place on Memorial Day weekend at the historic Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Those interested in taking part in this historic and hugely popular race can book their Indiana rental cars and start planning which parties, fairs and other activities they want to attend.
The big day
When race day rolls around, hundreds of thousands of fans fill the stands and infield of the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The track, which was built only two years before the first Indy 500 installment and was initially used for gas-filled balloon racing, is a massive course that runs for 2.5 miles. The oval infield is so large that it could contain six of the world's most renowned attractions: the Rose Bowl, Yankee Stadium, Vatican City, Churchill Downs, Wimbledon Campus and Roman Coliseum, and it adds an extra 100,000 to the speedway's capacity. Due to the large number of people that visit, it can be difficult to find a parking spot; however, you can reserve a parking spot for your Indianapolis 500 rental car by buying a placard ahead of time.
This exhilarating event, which spans 500 miles, features some of the most talented drivers in the world, and only the best of the best cross the finish line first - in the past, big names in the sport such as Helio Castroneves, Al Unser, Dan Wheldon, Rick Mears and Dario Franchitti have taken first. The winner of the open-wheel race claims the Borg-Warner trophy during an emotional and moving ceremony on victory lane. Whether you're a motor sports fan or not, it can be a very exciting and impassioned experience, particularly when a hush comes over the crowd for the traditional singing of the signature tune, "Back Home Again in Indiana." The guest singer has been American TV and music icon Jim Nabors since 1972, who performs with the help of the Purdue All-American Marching Band.
Other festivities during Indy 500
While the race is obviously the highlight of the Indianapolis 500, there are other activities planned for the big day. Food, wine and beer producers from all over the region set up shop, offering delicious edibles and beverages at more than 100 vendor booths. You'll also find a huge party taking place in the speedway's Snake Pit. Band perform for the audience while the crowds dance, drink and partake in beach games. If you're going to consume alcohol during the race, it may be wise to leave your Indianapolis car rental at the hotel and take advantage of the public transportation, taxi and shuttle services available.