How many bricks in the yard?

Indiana National Bank asked Tony Hulman to share Indianapolis 500 attendance figures when he borrowed an estimated $700,000 to purchase Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 1945.

The bank never got the figures. Hulman paid off the loan.

Although Hulman died in 1977, his secret has lived on. No one connected with the Speedway has confirmed the size of any race-day crowd, and the limited number of people who know show no indication of breaking Hulman’s unwritten rule.

Last fall, The Star decided to solve the mystery.

Come on, you know you’re going to read the rest, don’t you?

Posted at 1:34 pm in Uncategorized |

2 responses to “How many bricks in the yard?”

  1. Vince said on May 28, 2004 at 3:44 am

    Another gripping top secret shattered!

    Naw. Actually, I like that they demystified it.

    But here’s another question: What do the fire codes say? Surely the fire department has to authorize stadium safety. Did they do that blind with no concept of true attendance?

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  2. Nance said on May 28, 2004 at 6:40 am

    That’s an excellent question, but I’m sure there’s an answer that makes no sense, in a Hoosier sort of way.

    I’m more amazed by how long this silly fiction of 400,000 persisted. If they’re squeezing 250K into the stands, no way are another 150K going into the infield. On the other hand, the place is truly massive — there’s a damn golf course in the infield — so maybe they were close, in not quite that high.

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