From J. Douglas Boles
INDIANAPOLIS, Thursday, April 21, 2011 – The legendary first four-time winner of the Indianapolis 500, A.J. Foyt, will be honored Saturday, May 28 during “A.J. Foyt Day” at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of Foyt’s first Indianapolis victory, in 1961. Foyt also won as a driver in 1964, 1967 and 1977 and as a team owner in 1999 with Kenny Brack driving.
Houston native Foyt has participated in the Indianapolis 500 as a driver or owner for an unprecedented 54 consecutive years. He made a record 35 consecutive starts as a driver from 1958-92.
Foyt will participate in a question-and-answer session from 11:30-11:45 a.m. on the Coca-Cola Stage in the Pagoda Plaza, followed by an exclusive autograph session from 11:55 a.m.-12:25 p.m. in the Plaza. One-hundred wristbands will be distributed for the autograph session at 9 a.m. in the Pagoda Plaza, with one per person.
Video highlights of Foyt’s incredible career will air on the video boards located around IMS throughout the day.
The activities honoring Foyt are the highlight of a full day of fan-friendly fun at IMS the day before the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500, with all of these events included in free gate admission:
•The “World’s Largest Autograph Session.” Every living driver from the Indianapolis 500 has been invited to IMS to participate in this session, which consists of two signing groups, one from 9-10 a.m. in the Pagoda Plaza and another from noon-4 p.m. in the IMS infield.
The morning group will feature all 33 drivers in the starting field of the 2011 Indianapolis 500 plus most of the 27 living winners of the “500,” while the afternoon group will feature veteran drivers, including “roadster” standouts from the 1950s and 1960s.
•A full-scale memorabilia show from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. in the IMS infield already so popular that vendor space sold out within 48 hours.
•A public question-and-answer session with Chase Rookie of the Year candidates on the Coca-Cola Stage in the Pagoda Plaza from 10-10:15 a.m.
•The annual drivers’ meeting from 10:40-11 a.m. on pit road adjacent to the Tower Terrace grandstand, which includes awards presentations and last-minute instructions to the starting field.
•An all-day display of 19 vintage sprint and midget race cars in the IMS infield, with several driven by the greatest legends of the Brickyard: Foyt, Andretti, Rutherford and the Unsers.
•The Red Bull Battle at the Brickyard will showcase top bicycle motocross riders from around the world competing on a concrete playground from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Flag Lot. The Flatland BMX competition is similar to break-dancing on a bicycle.
•A display of cars from the Mazda Road To Indy that is grooming the future stars of the Indianapolis 500. Cars from The Cooper Tires presents the USF2000 National Championship powered by Mazda, the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear and Firestone Indy Lights will be on display starting at 11 a.m. in the Pagoda Plaza.
•Book signings featuring authors of new books about the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and its history.
•A “Virtual Indy 500” that will feature fans across the world racing in a full-length Indianapolis 500 on the PC simulation iRacing.com at noon. Selected fans also will compete at 3:30 p.m. against Indianapolis 500 drivers in an iRacing.com sprint race appearing on the large video boards at IMS, with prizes including Race Day packages to the 2011 Indianapolis 500 and more.
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum will be open with its incredible new exhibition of 67 Indianapolis 500-winning cars. Museum admission is just $5 for adults and $3 for ages 6-15, with children under 6 free.
The 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500 is scheduled for noon (ET) Sunday, May 29. It will be broadcast live on ABC and the IMS Radio Network/XM 145-Sirius 212.
2011 Indianapolis 500 tickets: Tickets are on sale for the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500, “The Most Important Race in History,” on Sunday, May 29, 2011 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Race Day ticket prices start at just $30. Fans can buy tickets online at www.imstix.com, by calling the IMS ticket office at (317) 492-6700, or (800) 822-INDY outside the Indianapolis area, or by visiting the ticket office at the IMS Administration Building at the corner of Georgetown Road and 16th Street between 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET) Monday-Friday.
Children 12 and under will be receive free general admission to any IMS event in 2011 when accompanied by an adult general admission ticket holder.
Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are on sale. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at (866) 221-8775 for more information.