Kincaid Wins Over Dawson, Harroun

Sometimes the newspaper reporting was a bit disappointing in these early days of motorsport as this photo appeared in the May 28, 1910 Indianapolis Star without a clear connection to a particular article or event. Elsewhere on First Super Speedway you can find articles relevant to this image that cover the first day of racing for the May 1910 race meet at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
All this information was part of the May 1910 weekend that included "national championships," a newly-announced distinction by the American Automobile Association (AAA) for select race meets. Car manufacturers were keen to make a great showing. Check out two articles and still another that provide an additional summary of the race events for the day that were published in the Indianapolis Star on the same day.
What is confusing about this image is that it reports that it captures a race victory by Tom Kincaid of the National Motor Vehicle Company race team but does not specify the contest. Since Kincaid won two races that day (a five-mile sprint and the Prest-O-Lite Trophy) it is not immediately clear which race it refers to. Further, the head above the image indicates that Kincaid is seen beating Ray Harroun. That clue dosn't help much because Harroun did not finish second in either of Kincaid's victories. However, he did finish third to Kincaid in a sprint race and his Marmon teammate Joe Dawson finished second.
For this reason I think this image is from the five-mile sprint, Class B, Division 4 cars of 301 to 450 cubic engines and a weight minimum of 2,000 pounds. Six cars started and Tom Kincaid brought his National home first with a time of 4:05.76. This was reportedly a world record. Dawson finished second with another MarmonDawson led until the very end when Kincaid nipped him at the finish with a margin of two tenths of a second. Other competitors mentioned in the mix are: Harroun (Marmon), Charlie Merz (National) and Leigh Lynch (Jackson). 

  1. Kincaid - 4:05.76
  2. Dawson
  3. Harroun

Just an observation - note the water tower/cistern just north of the frontstretch grandstand. I'm guessing that is about where H stand is today. Is it possible this was a water source for the boilers of the the Big Four train line engines that ran near the track?

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