INDIANAPOLIS: INDY 500 - CARB DAY

Trip Start Apr 01, 2013
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Trip End Jun 28, 2013


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Where I stayed
Airbnb Apartment - Indianapolis

Flag of United States  , Indiana
Friday, May 24, 2013

I got up and packed my day-pack and cooler for the big day ahead. Granted this was only one of the lead-up events and not the main race, but I needed to ensure I was in peak physical condition for Sunday. So in essence this was a practice session for both me and the drivers.

Loaded with beer, Jack Daniels and fine food, I made my to the bus stop where I was to catch the bus to the race track. I had the cowboy hat on to make sure I blended in with the rednecks at the track but still got some funny looks walking to the bus stop.

I waited about 35 minutes before the bus finally showed up and ended up sitting in front of a hillbilly with a black eye and cut up face. After he started talking to me, I could see why he had his injuries. He kept asking me what part of Australia, New Zealand was in. I kept telling him they were separate countries but he kept asking. I thought about giving him a matching black eye.

The bus dropped me off 9 blocks from the track. Handy. It was only about a 25 minute walk. I picked up my tickets to Carb Day, tomorrow's Legends Day and for the main race on Sunday. I also had a VIP Pass to the 'Snake Pit'. The Snake Pit is where the sights are and the carnage occurs inside the track on race day (Sunday). 

The Indy cars were already roaring around the track in the final practice session by the time I got inside. I went under the track via a tunnel to the inside and was immediately blown away by the noise of the cars and size of the track. Bloody impressive.

Scott Dixon, in his number 9 car, had been battling for pace recently but he and his teammate, Dario Franchitti, will both be starting from the middle of the pack on Sunday. Their Hondas showed their muscle today though during the practice session with Scott Dixon clocking in fourth fastest with a speed of 224.87mph and his team mate doing well also. Jesus, that's quick.
With the practice session over and done with, I decided to have a look around the merchandise area and got a Scott Dixon t-shirt for the big race. There were lots of giveaways like can coolers, Brett Michael's bandana's, etc. Mainly crap.

I caught a free shuttle to the other side of the inner track where the tailgate parties were in full swing. It was pretty impressive and has to be seen to be believed. There were pick-up trucks, cars, bbq's, flags, games, oil wrestling pools, huge stereo systems and plenty of drunk people staggering around.

I spent an hour wandering around just watching before coming across a bloke called Chris wearing a Scott Dixon shirt, similar to the one I had purchased. He had a huge extendable flag pole attached to his pick-up truck with a checkered flag and a beer flag flying. I walked up to him and his crew of about 15 and said that as he was a Scott Dixon fan, he should have a New Zealand flag flying. He said he didn't have one so I said, "here's one I prepared earlier" :). 
Five minutes later my flag was up the flagpole.

I hung with Chris and his crew for several hours, having a few laughes, some hot dogs and some turkey burgers. They were bloody well prepared. We were joined by another kiwi from Cromwell who was with a tour party and who had seen my flag hoisted high. He hung around for a couple of beers before buggering off to look for his mates.
 
I retrieved the flag and met a few other people throughout the afternoon including a family of 6 rednecks from Michigan while on my way to the other side of the track to see the band, Poison, who were playing. They loved my accent which I said I had had all my life and asked me if I wanted a lift in one of the 2 pedi-cabs they'd hailed. I jumped in and we were at the other side of the track within 5 minutes.

Me and the red-necks pushed our way through the masses to get a good position. After a while, they decided to try and get a bit closer to the front which I was not keen on as I had my pack and cooler with me, so I ditched them.

Poison came on and played all their big hits with Brett Michaels strutting around the stage like a peacock. They were good but the sound could have been better and definitely louder.
 
After the show I started the big walk back to the bus stop. On the way I called into what appeared to be a biker bar and sat out the front yarning with a few jokers and checking out some awesome Harleys.
 
I pushed off and caught my bus back into town and wandered back to the apartment.
 
And I get to do it all again tomorrow :)

Over and out !

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