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Opening Arguments

Once is not enough

An Indianapolis woman warns propsective Hoosiers that "It only takes once to get hooked on the Indy 500":

When I moved to Indianapolis in 2003, I knew nothing about auto racing. Zilch. Pistons? Crankshafts? Pit stall? Give me a break. But as a new reporter for WTHR-TV, the NBC affiliate, I soon found myself thrust into the center of the largest single-day sporting event in the world.

Six years later, I'm still slow to explain down force, grip and bite, but I can tell you the Indianapolis 500 absolutely lives up to its reputation as the greatest spectacle in racing. Even if you can't name a single driver, watching Indy Cars scream down the straightaway at 225 m.p.h. is nothing short of awe-inspiring.

Even if it means I have to give up my status as a Hoosier or a redneck or both, I have to confess that I don't get it. Never have. I understand the lure for the drivers and everybody associated with them. And I can fathom the appeal of the spectacle of it all. But the core mission of being a fan is to just sit there and watch cars drive around in the same 2 1/2-mile oval 200 times. I don't appreciate horse-racing all that much, either, but at least it's over in a couple of minutes.

Posted in: Hoosier lore, Sports