Now, back one day, to raceday. Our day started very early because we anticipated a very large crowd based on the higher than expected crowds on Carb Day. We also wanted to meet with Rick and Laverne Lane, Bob Ruddick and the rest of the Third Turn Society. The Society is a group of photographers who have been shooting the Indy 500 from turn three for many years. Since I was shooting this event for this blog and not for a national media outlet, I wanted to try to shoot it from a fan perspective. We arrived at the Speedway at 8:05 a.m. Upon arrival at the Pagoda, the first thing I saw was the above pictured, Marmon Wasp, the first winner of the Indianapolis 500 in 1911. Next was our hookup with Rick and the rest of the Third Turn Society.
Rick made us honorary Members of the Third Turn Society! We were stunned and honored!! As race time approached the Society made their way to their third turn positions and we wandered around the infield, soaking in the ambiance and excitement of the upcoming race.
Then it was time to move to our seats. We were seated in the infield side grandstand Section 37 Row HH, which is adjacent to and overlooking Victory Circle. From there we watched the crowds gather around the cars, and the celebrities prepare for their participation in pre-race activities. Jim Nabors was exceptionally animated.
That was a lot of balloons! And then they rolled off the grid!!
The cars did three warm-up laps and on the fourth lap Mark Cuban waved the green flag and the action began.
The race went caution free until lap 149. After which Janet had to go prepare for the Victory Circle presentation of Jeanetta's quilt. I went down and finished watching the race on the gigantic infield flat screen television. The picture was so clear it was like looking at the TV in my family room. It was one of the best Indy 500's in recent memory. Also, this was one of the largest crowds in recent history to watch the 500. Congratulations to Ryan Hunter-Reay and the whole Andretti Autosports team.