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1932 Indy 500 was full of crashes, obstacles

1932 Indy 500 was full of crashes, obstacles
1932 Indy 500 was full of crashes, obstacles
Posted at 5:14 PM, Mar 09, 2016

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indianapolis Indians played their first full season in Perry Stadium on 16th Street beginning in 1932 with a grand opening to hungry baseball fans in the Circle City.

And it was the 20th running of the Indianapolis 500 on Monday, May 30 at IMS with plenty of pageantry of its own.

Big name guests showed up to the track: Founder of the Ford Motor Company Henry Ford and his son Edsel greeted Speedway president Eddie Rickenbacker before the race.

Forty cars started the race, but 26 dropped out from crashes or mechanical failure.

Even before the race, riding mechanic Harry Cox and driver Milton Jones were both killed from injuries sustained in crashes during practice that May.

One of the most dramatic moments of the day came on lap 59 when Billy Arnold's quest to repeat his 1930 win ended when his car spun and went backwards over the turn 3 wall to the sound of shrieks and screams.

Fred Frame, the runner-up of the previous year's race, started 27th, but by lap 152 had the lead, despite some ongoing trouble: His engine kept overheating and he had to pit six times. 

But he navigated the obstacles, taking the checkered flag for the win with only nine others who were fortunate enough to complete all 500 miles.

Even more amazing: He did so by setting a new record average speed of just over 104 miles per hour and a time of 4 hours, 48 minutes, 3.79 seconds, nearly 10 minutes quicker than the previous record.


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