The Athletic Reporter
September 12, 2005 Sports News the Way You Want It. Completely Made Up. Issue 127
 
Indianapolis 500 Held Indoors Due To Rain
Originally posted 5/31/2004

A.J. Foyt IV (back) loses control of his car on the slick gym floor as Jeff Simmons (front) zooms past
INDIANAPOLIS - With rain forecast for central Indiana this weekend, the 88th running of the Indianapolis 500 was held indoors Sunday. The race, held in the gymnasium of Indianapolis's Warren Central High School, was moved inside at the insistence of IRL president and CEO Tony George, who "didn't like the looks of" the Memorial Day weekend weather forecast.

"We didn't want to take any chances," George said. "We've got a lot of people who came quite a long ways to see this, and it's really special for all the drivers, and it just wouldn't have been any fun to have to cancel it, or to have everybody get all wet. So, we decided to move the whole thing into the gym."

The venue shift was not easy on the drivers, said Dreyer and Reinbold Racing's Buddy Lazier. "Normally, in the Indy 500, we go 200 laps, and that's pretty easy to keep track of. This time, though, since the gym was so small, we had to do, what was it, 1,536 laps? Who can remember that? I thought I won like six times, but it kept not being over yet. And I couldn't see the guy who waves the flags, because he was just sitting up on top of one of the basketball hoops instead of up in that tower like he usually is."

"Man, this wasn't any good," said racing fan Dan Blaylock of Terre Haute, Indiana, who said he's attended ten Indy 500 races. "They didn't have any bleachers set up inside, so we all just had to crowd in around the side of the gym. I'm not a tall man, so, I really couldn't see anything at all. I got half a mind to ask for my money back."

Following the race, George conceded that holding it indoors was not ideal, and that in the future the Indy Racing League and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway would think of some other way to handle rain. "Like, maybe race boats instead of cars, if it rains really hard," George said.

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