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OT but amazing: 1911 Indy 500 footage


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#1 Magoo

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Posted 25 May 2013 - 14:44

This is just amazing. I had no idea this much film of the inaugural 1911 Indianapolis 500 even existed. And it's incredible -- like an old silent war film or something. Guns, horses, mayhem, violence. Makes you realize how long ago 1911 was, a world apart.... actually, it defies description. You just need to watch it.


Video: 1911 Indianapolis 500 | Mac's Motor City Garage


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#2 saudoso

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Posted 25 May 2013 - 22:04

So cool, thaks a lof for this one.

Dust, horses, men in suits, steering on the right and on board mechanic. I was ready for all of that. But I never expected to see Fiat.

#3 Tony Matthews

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 06:53

But I never expected to see Fiat.

NOBODY expects to see a FIAT.

#4 Thekirkshop

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Posted 26 May 2013 - 21:11

When the cars start crashing always ride a horse onto pit road: Bring back track marshals on horses! (Might've helped in Monaco too!)

#5 Magoo

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Posted 28 May 2013 - 09:23

When the cars start crashing always ride a horse onto pit road: Bring back track marshals on horses! (Might've helped in Monaco too!)


It all makes sense when you recall they'd only run the Indians off a few years earlier.


#6 Paolo

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 08:49

Great find, thanks.

By the way, why some cars have a riding mechanic and some don't (es: 3:52, 5:24)?
If it was a free choice, one wonders about the advantage of having a crew of two.

EDIT: I educated myself and the driver in the lone single seater won, helped by that bleeding edge technology, the REAR VIEW MIRROR ??

Edited by Paolo, 31 May 2013 - 09:08.


#7 Magoo

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 11:24

Great find, thanks.

By the way, why some cars have a riding mechanic and some don't (es: 3:52, 5:24)?
If it was a free choice, one wonders about the advantage of having a crew of two.

EDIT: I educated myself and the driver in the lone single seater won, helped by that bleeding edge technology, the REAR VIEW MIRROR ??


Yes, one more great automotive advance proven in racing and passed to production cars, okay not really.


#8 Paolo

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 11:31

Yes, one more great automotive advance proven in racing and passed to production cars, okay not really.


Uh, not really? It would seem this was the case from what I read, the predecessor being installed on an horse carriage.

#9 Magoo

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Posted 31 May 2013 - 15:49

Uh, not really? It would seem this was the case from what I read, the predecessor being installed on an horse carriage.


Right. As I said, not really.

Let's suppress if not suspend disbelief and aver that nobody ever thought to install a rear-view mirror on an automobile for the first +/- 20 years of its history. Then suddenly, one day in 1911, Ray Harroun had a brainstorm...except the devices were already in use on horse-drawn vehicles, rail engines, etc.

As inventions go, the rear-view mirror is a little obvious. Like handles on a chamber pot...the inspiration does not involve a huge leap of the imagination.

#10 E.B.

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Posted 02 June 2013 - 09:46

Then suddenly, one day in 1911, Ray Harroun had a brainstorm...except the devices were already in use on horse-drawn vehicles, rail engines, etc.


I don't get how this famous myth ever began anyway - Harroun himself never claimed to have invented the idea, quite the opposite.


#11 GreenMachine

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Posted 02 June 2013 - 11:37

Back in the movie theatre, I finally got to see this, as when I last tried it would just crash my computer. WOW! That is a fascinating piece of motorsport/car history!!

One question though, is that dust being thrown up, or smoke, or ... I notice that a 'line' seems to develop as the film progresses, or is that the oil being dropped?

Thanks Magoo, :clap:

#12 Magoo

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Posted 02 June 2013 - 11:53

I don't get how this famous myth ever began anyway - Harroun himself never claimed to have invented the idea, quite the opposite.



Maybe this was the moment racing PR was born. So it was an important breakthrough after all.

#13 7MGTEsup

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 14:11

Back in the movie theatre, I finally got to see this, as when I last tried it would just crash my computer. WOW! That is a fascinating piece of motorsport/car history!!

One question though, is that dust being thrown up, or smoke, or ... I notice that a 'line' seems to develop as the film progresses, or is that the oil being dropped?

Thanks Magoo, :clap:


I think a lot of engines back then ran a "total loss" oil system.