|INDY 500 Carb Day
Thursday - May 23, 2002
Brian, Joy and I rode into Speedway early today.
Traffic was pretty light for Carb Day.
We first had to stop at the IRL office so that I could pick
up our pit/garage passes.
The IRL office is across the street from the track.
We decided to leave our vehicles there and walk in.
Since we were entering from the south, we checked out all the tents and displays now setup in the museum parking lot.
There was a Indy car on display that had a paint job that featured John Mellencamp's album from last year.
The song off that album, "Peaceful World", has been used as the IRL's theme song since last May. Great song!
|Here is a cool 60's Chevrolet concept - the Astro
Bombardier had a tent setup displaying some of their fun toys - jet skis, marine motors, ATV's and snow mobiles! Cool.
There were also several race Corvettes on display as well as a tent full of Chevy pace cars, mostly Vettes and Camaros.
Some IRL drivers who sell Pepsi...
.... Sam Hornish Jr. .....
..... Robbie Buhl .....
We eventually made our way over to the garages. We
walked around and saw several drivers, such as Robbie
Buhl who pedals around on a bicycle. I saw Robbie
McGehee looking forlorn, leaning on his crutches.
Joy got close to Mario Andretti -
a living legend!
Shigeaki Hattori is popular
with the Japanese press.
I was very happy to get to see super model Elaine Irwin Mellencamp.
Here is a cool chopper amongst the many cool bikes in the garage area.
Girls in the garage area..
Warming up the engine (or transmission)
Driver George Mack.
TO THE PITS!
The cars were going out for their last practice before race day
and we wanted to take full advantage of our pit passes.
The stands by the tower filled up.
Having pit passes is GREAT!
Especially on Carb Day since many cars are testing and the crowd is big.
(Lots of people wishing they were you!)
It has been 10 years since I've had pit passes!
I had Brian try and snap a picture of me now in a pose similar to the one
taken of me on the pit wall back in '92. I even wore the same t-shirt!
We walked along the pits snapping pictures of drivers.
Some girls went up and got autographs.
Joy went up to Jeff Ward and we took her picture with him.
Here is a presentation of the drivers I snapped:
Jeff Ward and Joy
Bruno Junqueira .....and ........ hot Brazilian fans
Jimmy Vasser was driving for
Rahal Letterman Racing.
On the good side of the fence!
Firebird giving me a new hair style!
Here they are painting the backdrop up on
the awards platform. By race day, they had
wrapped the 15-foot tall concrete pedestal
with shiny stainless steel.
After we'd traversed the pit lane from end to end,
we wandered down into turn 1 and grabbed a bite to eat.
They had gyros and deli sandwiches that were good!
Joy and I sitting in the Pit garage terrace.
The area around the tower terrace where they were
having the pit stop competition was very full and we
didn't attempt to enter into it.
We did try our pit passes, but they wouldn't let us down
to where the action was - no big surprise.
We ended up back in the plaza behind the tower.
It was pretty full already, in anticipation of the concerts
They were jamming some Mellencamp over the
John 'Cougar' Mellencamp is a local and is very popular.
GO HERE to see pics of the concert.
We hung out there a long time. I watched the coolers as
Brian and Joy went back to the garages to try and see
Al Unser, Jr. won the Indy 500 on the day their eldest
daughter, Alaina, was born, so they especially like him.
Thousands of people packed into the plaza for the late
afternoon concerts. The music was good and it was a
When it was over, we went to return our passes to the IRL
office in the garages, but it was after 6 and they were
already closed. I had to swing by the next morning on my
way to work to drop them off. I always take the day after
Carb Day off, but this year I'm short on vacation days.
If you read my Opening Day page, you saw that there
was a killdeer bird that setup a nest on the sidewalk.
From this picture you can see the barrier they have
since erected to keep people away from him.
Joy and Brian