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Road to 100: 1946

Posted at 7:01 PM, Mar 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-19 21:36:21-04
1946.
 
World War II is finally over. The Japanese sinking of the USS Indianapolis, which had just unloaded the atomic bomb that would be dropped on Hiroshima, still fresh in the minds of Hoosiers. 12,000 Hoosiers lost their lives in the war. 
 
But it was time for Central Indiana to turn its attention back to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, which sat neglected during the war for four years, shutting down for only the second time in history. 
 
The track was in shambles, with weeds replacing cars. 

 

 

New owner, businessman Tony Hulman, was determined to turn it around and welcome fans back to the 500 mile race. He wondered if they would return. 
 
He brought in three-time winner Wilbur Shaw as the new president and general manager. Drivers couldn't wait, including Harry McQuinn, who landed his plane on the bricks to deliver his entry blank. 
 
The stands were packed, although many missed the race, stuck in horrific traffic jams, unable to get in to see the race. Winner George Robson was one of only nine drivers to finish the race, with a 44 second lead on the second place finisher. 

 

 

It was Robson's first, and only 500 win. 
 
The Indy 500 was back. 

 

 

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