Jun 20 2011

In the Indy Formula One Garage and On the Track: The Marmon Wasp that Won the 1911 Indy 500

One day prior to the 2011 Indy 500 Race, the Black Beast and other race cars that participated in this year's pre-race ceremonies were stored in the Indianapolis Motor Speedway's Formula One Garage. Among these racers was the 1911 Marmon that won the Inaugural 1911 Indy 500 Race driven by Ray Harroun:


The racer was described in a recent Indy Hall of Fame Museum brochure "The Ultimate Indianapolis Winning Car Collection":

Ray Harroun


Average speed- 74.602

The famed six-cylinder, single-eat, streamlined Marmon "Wasp" won the very first Indianapolis 500 in 1911, driven by Ray Harroun and relief man Cyrus Patschke. It was designed and built by the engineering department of the Indianapolis-based Nordyke & Marmon passenger-car firm. In response to complaints during practice that he was a potential safety hazard by not carrying a riding mechanic, driver/engineer Harroun rigged up, above the cowling, what is believed to have been the very first rearview mirror ever used on an automobile.

Owner: Indianapolis Motor Speedway Foundation

This 46-second video shows the return of the 1911 Marmon to the Indy 500 track as part of the 2011 Indy 500 pre-race ceremonies. It was only the third time this historic car was driven on the IMS oval on race day since it won in 1911. The car was driven into position by AJ, a chief mechanic for the Indy Hall of Fame Museum.


The Marmon was driven by Parnelli Jones during the the first and second parade laps of the 2011 Indy 500 pre-race ceremonies.

Links to related posts on VanderbiltCupRaces.com:

Archives: In the Indy Formula One Garage

The Marmon Wasp -Winner of the 1911 Indy 500 Race

Ray Harroun in the Vanderbilt Cup Races

Archives: 2011 Indy 500 Centennial Celebration

Archives: Indy 500 Races



Jun 26 2011 Chris Osborne 10:36 AM

Howard, this is wonderful!  I just finished a painting for the 2011 Dayton Ohio Concours poster, in the painting is the #32 Marmom Wasp with Ray Harroun.  Also a 1911 Cadillac with Charles Kettering and Edward Deeds, Daton residents who invented the electric ignition (tested in a 1911 Cadillac).  The theme of the poster is a celebration of these events 100 years ago.  I will send you a photo.  Best wishes, Chris Osborne

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