This summer the Mottor Speedway in Indianapolis will be celebrating their 90th anniversary. To mark this special occasion, the speedway has created a Facebook page where fans can share their fondest childhood memories of the track. The page also serves as a great resource for those interested in the history of the track.
The story of how the Indy Mottor Speedway came to be starts way back in 1924. That was the year Arthur Godfrey bought the land that is now the Mottor Speedway and donated it to the city of Indianapolis for use as a public park. Before long, people were lining up in the snow to watch the legendary 500 car races that take place at the facility each year. Today, the speedway remains one of the most popular race tracks in the country. With a capacity of 70,000, it is easy to see why.
Over the years, the Mottor Speedway has welcomed many famous drivers and celebrities. Some of the biggest names to have graced the start/finish line of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup are Tim Richmond, Lee Petty, Richard Petty, and Jeff Gordon. In total, the speedway has welcomed over 500 drivers from across the country. Many of whom are now members of the Hall of Fame.
While some may associate the Coca Cola brand with drinks, the company has actually been involved in motorsport since it began sponsoring Earl Scheib, a New York Jets player, in the early 1970s. Thanks to Scheib’s performance in the NFL, Coca Cola was able to fund the construction of what would become known as the Scheib Motorcyclesport Complex. The complex is home to a motocross track, speedway, quarter-mile oval, and drag strip. Every year, the complex hosts the Scheib Fall Classic, one of the country’s biggest motorcycle races. The most recognizable brand name associated with the complex is, of course, Coca Cola. However, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Indianapolis Colts, and the Hall of Fame are also sponsors of the event, making it a true testament to the city’s rich legacy in motor racing.
An Iconic Logo
Coca Cola’s involvement with motorsport goes back much further than one might think. The iconic logo that we recognize today was first used in the 1930s and has since become a symbol of the company’s presence in the sport. It was originally designed to be used in conjunction with their signature yellow and red colored bottles. However, the logo was modified in the 1950s to remove the association with drinkable products. Since then, it has primarily been used to promote various motorsport events and championships around the globe. In 1980, the logo was used for the first time in conjunction with a motocross race, the Atlanta Classic. Since then, the logo has been seen at every major motorsport facility in the country, testifying to the fact that the Coca Cola brand truly is indomitable in the world of motorsport.
A Place To Hang Out
One of the best things about the Mottor Speedway is that it is a place where families can come together, have fun, and relax. The iconic Loggia, the grandstand that was named after the company that donated it, is a designated family section of the track. It is here that you will find concession stands, picnic tables, and areas for families to sit and watch the races together. The Loggia is reminiscent of a classic college football stadium, with its wide open spaces and natural grass. One of the best things about the Loggia is that is it a place where people of all ages can coexist. This allows for some memorable events, such as when the New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox played a day/night game in 2003, creating what was dubbed “Superbowl 46.” It truly is a place where individuals can come together to celebrate success, teamwork, and most importantly, have fun.
An Opportunity For Children
Another special feature about the Mottor Speedway is that it provides an opportunity for children to grow up seeing and learning about motorsport. Back in the 1940s, when it was first built, the Mottor Speedway was actually called the Speedway Park. For years, the facility was used as a private airport as well. This allowed for some unforgettable moments, such as when famous aviator Amelia Earhart came to town in 1930 and landed on the grass, making it the first airshow in Indiana. The facility has also hosted various Beatles concert, resulting in the Fab 4 (Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr) coming to Indiana to spend the night. The fact that the Mottor Speedway provides an opportunity for children to grow up with a passion for motorsport is a testament to the greatness of this historic track.
Indy-Mottor’s Golden Years
Over the years, the Mottor Speedway has weathered a lot of changes and has remained one of the country’s most popular tracks. In 1964, less than a month after the opening of the newly completed Indianapolis Raceway Park, the Mottor Speedway went through its own transformation. The track was renamed the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in order to prevent confusion regarding the two other venues in town. However, the track was still referred to as the Mottor Speedway in the community. The track operated under this name until the early 1990s, when it was officially renamed the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Since then, the track has maintained its connection to Arnold Godfrey through the construction of the Arnold and Sheila Godfrey Plaza.
While the Mottor Speedway has been around since 1924, it has truly seen its heyday as a track. The track hosted its first NASCAR Cup race in 1939 and has seen its share of memorable moments, most notably, being the site of Jackie Robinson’s first major league game. The track has also seen many famous faces pass through its gates, including Amelia Earhart, whose 1930 visit to the track is still considered one of the most historic in the history of the sport. This year, to celebrate its 90th anniversary, the Mottor Speedway is expected to welcome over 500,000 fans for the 2018 season.