Things NOT to Take to the Speedway
Related Links:
Spotter's Guide
Shows photos of all the cars with driver names.
Print one
from this page.

The Day's Schedule
I've goofed many times by not taking this!
They probably hand you one when you walk in - Take It!

In case you want to get an autograph.

Radio or Scanner with Headphones
Depending on where you sit, it may be hard to hear the P.A.
There are people renting scanners at IMS.

I try to provide up-to-date frequency lists for those with their
own scanners:

IndyCar Scanner Frequencies

Nascar Scanner Frequencies

Stop Watch & Binoculars
If You're 'Old School"
The Speedway does a good job keeping you informed of
drivers' speeds so you do not need a stop watch.  However,
I find it fun to time race cars and figure speeds of whomever
I want, whenever I want.  All I need is a speed chart.

Speed Chart
Time a race car on a lap and then use the speed charts to
determine average lap speed.  I have provided links to
speed charts below:

Indycar Speed Chart for Indy 500

Nascar Speed Chart for Brickyard 400 - for Oval Track
If you park in the infield, you can bring a keg!  But if you'll be
parking outside the track, have some coolers and ice
unless you want to buy beer.  You cannot buy ice inside the
speedway.  Glass containers are NOT allowed, so buy

A Frisbee or Football
Something to play with in the 3rd Turn infield grass.
If you're not Peyton Manning, you might choose a
NERF in case you hit a car or someone's kid.

Little Red Wagon
These are good for towing large coolers around if you will
be hanging out in the infield or for hauling your drunk friend
back to the car at the end of the day!


Cornhole Boards
Nice if you'll be hanging out by your car where the ground
is flat.

A Banner Stating Your Philosophy
Infield only.  Banners and flags, as well as air-horns,
are NOT allowed in the stands

Lawn Chairs / Gondola Tent
If you will be sitting in the infield, bring a lawn chair.  
You may need some shade too.

Charcoal Grill  (no propane!)
Grill up some breakfast or lunch!
Race Fans Take
Party Crowd Takes
Don't Forget Your Race Tickets & Parking Passes!  
You will need your ticket at the entry gate and at your grandstand.
If you like to keep your ticket as a souvenir, use a plastic ticket holder and lanyard, available for sale at the track.

In case you park outside IMS, or you want to buy a T-shirt from a hawker, etc.

Seat Cushion  
You can buy a foam cushion at the track. Meh.  
The best cushion is a dense foam rubber one that you can buy at a hardware store for $4.
You can rent or buy cushion seats with back rests for the stands that don't have backrests too.

Camera and Camcorder   
Cell phones are pretty good these days, but dedicated equipment is always better.   
Guide to taking Racing Photos

Can Coolie  

Sunglasses or Hat
Check out what the race car drivers wear - they set the style!

or perhaps
Umbrella / Poncho

Ear Plugs
These can be purchased at the track for $2.

Restricted on Race Day to a maximum size of 18" x 14" x 14".
Note: On race day, expect all bags and coolers and purses

to be searched.

Wet Naps  
These are handy when you're settled in your seat after you
eat the fried chicken or Cheetos!

Save room for souvenirs!

Comfortable Shoes!  
You'll do a lot of walking as well as go up and down stairs.

Small Towel  
For drying your seat after your brother-in-law spills his beer, or it rains.
Things to Take to the Speedway
If you forget something, the Speedway gift shops sells it.
No Pets    
You may be able to sneak your pooch into the infield, but don't try taking it into crowded grandstands.
One time a dog got out on the track before the start of the 500!

No Drugs   
The police will CART you off to jail.  Pot is illegal in in Indiana.
The Police Dogs you will see are sniffing for bombs, not pot.

No Glass Bottles
Only bring beer in cans.  Pour your whisky into flasks.

No Fireworks or Firearms

No Propane Tanks

No Skateboards, Skates, Golf Carts, ATV's, etc.
(Note:  Beginning in 2016, you can ride your bicycle to the track and enter through vehicle entrance,
           but you cannot ride them through the vehicle tunnel to the infield.  Nor can you enter with the
           bicycle through pedestrian gates.  You also can't ride them around inside.  You can use a
           motorized wheelchair or scooter if you're handicapped.

No Drones
The supplies I need varies by what is going on that day, where I'm parking and where I plan to sit.

For use on the viewing hills.

While normal lawn chairs can be used along the top of viewing hills, those spots
are all taken early on busy race days.

If you
don't go real early and you don't like sitting on the ground,  I found a chair
that allows you to sit on a hill.

I recommend the
GCI Outdoor Everywhere Chair.  It has adjustable straps that
allows you to arrange the chair for different grades of incline.

It is also handy at outdoor concerts where
people sit on hills to watch the show.
However, if you prefer soft-sided coolers, I recommend this Thermos cooler because
it has a lid on top that easily opens so  you can grab a beer without having to unzip
the lid every time.  

It also has a zippered external pocket for storage and comes with a strap.

It is also small enough to take into the stands on race day.

Once it's empty, you can sit on it.

I have a large cooler that I leave in the trunk for refilling smaller cooler or for tailgating.
It has wheels and a handle.  If I am parked close to the Carb Day concert, I'll bring it
along to serve as a chair or a platform to stand on.  

If you are going to bring a cooler, get one with wheels and a handle!

The Coleman 16-quart Personal Wheeled Cooler is small enough to use at your seat
on race day!  The handle retracts.  What it lacks is a handle for carrying it up the stairs.  
It was easy to attack a rope handle to this cooler.   
Cooler Modification Instructions
Specific Items I Use

People often use backpacks for carrying their gear.
I don't like them.  They're bigger than I need, hard to put on and you have to take it
off each time you need something out of it.

I have found that a fanny pack works for me.

I recommend getting one that has several zippered pockets.

I found a couple of fanny packs that can hold a "water bottle" on the side.

I chose the
Engyen Waist Bag.  It has several compartments.  It has a stretchy
material on either side to hold a water bottle.  I use it as a place put my open
pint of beer when I need to take a photo.

If you have a large, heavy camera, or one with a long lens, I think the best way to
carry it is with the
Skout sling-style harness, made by Cotton Carrier.

It holds the camera securely to your chest.  It does not bounce around or get in my
way.  The camera can be easily and quickly removed or attached using just one

It is adjustable to fit all sizes of people.

I now have no reason not to take my big camera to the track or on a motorcycle trip.

Cotton Carrier makes a Skout to hold binoculars as well as larger harnesses for
people who need to carry two large cameras.
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