Dan's Indianapolis Motor Speedway

What to Bring to the Indy Speedway


Entry List
A list showing the car number and driver name. Newspapers are for sell at the track and an entry list is in each one. A nice one with photos is available if you buy a $10 program.

Radio or Scanner with Headphones
The speaker system at the track can't be heard when loud race cars are passing by infront of you.
You should be able to find the broadcast on a regular radio (use headphones!)
Sitting within site of a TV monitor is helpful too.

Some people take a radio scanner that allows them to scan a hundred different frequencies that the race teams, speedway, and tv channels use to communicate back and forth.
These scanners are for rent at the track (not the U.S. Grand Prix) and are generally price around $30-40. They usually have a frequency list for you for $5 if you have your own scanner.
I'll try to list freqs on this page when I find them. Check out these other websites for frequencies too: |
Race by Race | Indyscan.com |

babe on hood Binoculars
See cars down the stretch.

See bikini clad girls stretch out.

Stop Watch
Time an Andretti to see what his average speed is - or time Bubba to see how fast he chugs a beer.

Speed Chart
Time a race car on a lap and then use the speed charts below so you can tell how fast in MPH that they are going and know when your driver is picking up the pace.

There are two speedcharts, one for the Indy 500 and one for the Brickyard 400

I have created them for you in versions you can print out. I have tried to make them so that they fit on one piece of paper. But since there are different printers, you may have to adjust it. To do so in Windows, Once you choose PRINT, then choose PREFERENCES, then choose the PAGE SETUP tab, then select SCALED PRINTING for the Printing_Type. A SCALING box will appear, change the 100% to something less like 80%.

Indycar Speed Chart
Nascar Speed Chart


A Frisbee or Football
If you are a little wus, better take NERF or the guy's who's corvette you hit, might hit you!

A Banner Stating Your Philosophy

(If you are not too creative, there is always the old standby: "Show Us Your Tits")

Your Harley-Davidson
Don't get it dirty, haul it down in the back of your pickup truck.

$100 Van
You can sit on top of it all day, then abandon it.

$100 Car
Cut the top off and paint it a checkered flag pattern. Get some attention, then abandon.

Here is a car this guy always takes to the races.

He has a cardboard cutout of AJ Foyt and Dale Earnhardt riding in the back under a big fake spoiler. AJ even signed the hood.

Lawn Chairs
If you will be partying in the infield, better than sitting on your cooler.

Coolers limited to 14"x14" (12-pack) in the stands on raceday. No glass bottles. If you park in the infield, bring all you want!

Little Red Wagon
The easiest way to haul around mass quantities.


Money! Cash!
The refreshment stands do not take credit cards! There is only one little ATM on the grounds, located on the outside of the track and stands in Turn 1.

Seat Cushion
For $6, you can buy a cushion at the track. I guarantee you your butt will thank you! Also in the gift shops, they have super cushiony seats with backs for the bleachers at $16. (Sometimes rentals are available.)


You can buy smokes at some snack bars, but they are expensive.

It is hard to light up at the top of the stands in the wind with a bic. Best to have a Zippo!

Cell Phone
There are not alot of payphones at the track.

A Camera!
I recommend taking pictures around Gasoline Alley, where you can capture candid photos of the racing stars. The museum is another place to get good photos. For on-track pictures, either find a place where the fence isn't in your way, or sit up high and use a zoom lens. And if its got an auto-focus, all the better.

Note: I've posted some tips on taking racing pictures at the bottom of this page.

A Can Coolie

Race Fans will want to be fashionable and wear what the drivers are wearing that year.
Party people may bring cheap sunglasses.

Depending upon the weather, you may need an umbrella and a poncho instead (both of which are sold at the Speedway giftshops that are scattered around.

Ear Plugs
33 roaring V-8's can get kinda loud.

(May 2002) - Cooler size is now restricted to a max size of 14"x14".
On race day, expect all bags and coolers and purses to be searched.

Wet Naps
Those little pre-moistened napkins come in handy up in the stands after you've eaten some fried chicken or whatever.

Carrying Bags Backpacks and fannypacks are helpful, even plastic souvenir bags are handy.

Other items you might take...

Tennis shoes as opposed to sandals or high heels.

Things NOT to Take

Don't take your pets. You may be able to sneak your pooch in to the infield, but don't try taking it into crowded grandstands. (A couple of years ago, a dog got out on the track before the start of the 500!)

Do not take illegal substances - they might CART you off to jail.

Do not take glass bottles.


Here are some tips on how to take great auto-racing pictures from the world's largest photography school, the New York Institute of Photography (NYI).

Your Number One objective should be to try to produce a sense of speed in your still pictures. How? There are three traditional ways to do this.

The first technique is to freeze the action with a fast shutter speed. This may be fine for a pole vaulter, but it's a bad choice at an auto race. If you "freeze" a speeding car or motorcycle so that it looks like it's standing still, that's exactly the way it will look - like it's standing still. It may as well be parked!

The second technique is a better choice at the raceway. Place your camera on a tripod and shoot with a slow shutter speed. How slow? Start with 1/30-second and experiment with even slower shutter speeds like 1/15th or even 1/8th. On your prints the racing cars will come out with a blurred look on your prints. This blurring implies to the viewer that they're whizzing by.

The third technique is an even better choice at the raceway. As we just described, place your camera on a tripod and use a slow shutter speed. This time, however, pan as a car whizzes by. How do you pan? You pick up the car in your viewfinder a few seconds before you actually press the shutter button. Follow the car in your viewfinder by swiveling the camera to keep it in view. As the car zooms by, press the shutter button. Keep following the car in the viewfinder for a few more seconds. Result: The racing car will come out sharp in the print, but the background will blur. This blurred background implies "speed!"

With either technique, there's one more subtle trick NYI suggests: When you look at the racing car in your viewfinder, position it off center - with open space in front of it. In the finished print, this adds to the illusion of speed because it gives the car space to "move into." The picture looks much better this way.

For complete article:
"How to Photograph Motor Sports" go to This Web Site

- Reprinted with permisssion from the New York Institute of Photography website

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