Handicap Trophy - Balloon Race

This image was published in the June 4, 1909 Indianapolis Star. The subject is the Merchant's Association of Indianapolis Trophy donated by the business group to recognize the winner of the handicap event that was a secondary competition to the national balloon championship hosted at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on June 5, 1909. Three balloons were entered in the handicap race - the Indianapolis, the Ohio and the Chicago. The national championship was for balloons not larger than 78,000 cubic feet in capcity and not less than 50,000. The Chicago had a capacity of 110,000 cubic feet while the Indianapolis and Ohio were both 40,000. The winning balloon proved to be the Indianapolis piloted by Dr. Goethe Link and his assistant Russe "R.J." Irvin, both from Indianapolis. In addition to the trophy pictured here Speedway Founder and President Carl Fisher donated a second trophy. Dr. Link and Irvin drew for who would take possession of which trophy. Irvin ended up with Fisher's trophy and Dr. Link took the one pictured here. You can also find an image of the national championship trophy elsewhere on First Super Speedway.

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