It is one of the most famous sayings in sports, “Gentlemen, (and ladies now), start your engines.”
I know there’s no way I could fit inside this thing. This is what Jimmy Kite will be holding onto for dear life at 220 or more mph in just a few minutes from now!
I’m going to put a bunch of pictures into an online photo album after this so that you can see the pictures I’ve posted and more. Sorry about posting so many but there’s been plenty of photo taking opportunities.
Before the race gets started the pit crew has to practice their tire changing. They changed tires several times before they felt like they were ready.
This is what Jimmy Kite hopes no one sees in their rear view mirror at the end of the race.
The garage area is inside the track and it’s here that all the last-minute work is done on the cars. Some cars are already being wheeled out and some are still in pieces as they fine tune the engines.
I caught up with Jimmy Kite who’ll be driving #91 for Hemelgarn Racing today. He couldn’t have appeared more relaxed. In just a couple hours he’s hoping to drive around this track at 220 mph or more and move from the back of the pack to the winner’s circle. You can listen to my interview with Jimmy here:
Here’s something you don’t see everyday. I went to church yesterday not knowing that there’s a racing ministry that arranges on-site services here in the conference center on Sunday morning. It’s the first time I’ve ever seen a priest with a b&w checkered stole!
The pit area was pretty quiet early except for crew members like these who are out prepping their equipment and getting ready for the big event.
It’s early at the track but eventhough I left my hotel at 5:20am it still took me an 1 1/2 hours to get here. I guess multiple marching bands for entertainment on the track is a tradition. This Navy band from Illinois was the first in a long line of bands that are still marching out here.
One of the sponsors of Team Ethanol this year is the Illinois Corn Marketing Board. Representing them at the media event on Friday was Bryan Fogerson, board member and corn grower from Tuscola, IL. Bryan allowed me to interview him about his organization’s sponsorship and he talks about what the increased use of ethanol will mean to farmers and consumers.
Just walking downtown near the parade I saw a parked Indy 500 Chevy Suburban and it was displaying the E85 sticker.