Marmon Trio

The image you see here is derived from a photo that originally appeared in the August 31, 1909, Indianapolis News. It promoted the success of the Marmon racing team at the tragic first auto race meet for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
While the team was not exceptionally successful - they failed to win any of the three feature races held each day, the Prest-O-Lite Trophy, the G&J Trophy, and the Wheeler-Schebler Trophy which in the end was not awarded to anyone even though Jackson team driver Leigh Lynch was leading with 235 of the planned 300 miles (78%) completed. Nonetheless, Marmon was near the front and more importantly, went the distance.
Unfortunately too typical of news reporting in the day, the names of the drivers of each car is not presented. From other sources, I believe them to be Ray Harroun, Harry Stillman, and Bruce Keene.
The original cutline appearing under the picture reads as follows:
"One of the reasons for the interest of motor enthusiasts and manufacturers in long races lies in the fact that nothing will give such a satisfactory test of a machine as the terrific strain of high speed maintained for two hundred miles or more. The remarkably consistent performance of the Marmon Thirty-Two's in the hundred-mile and three-hundred-mile races at the speedway recently has won for them high praise and genuine respect throughout motordom. In neither of these races did the Marmons require any repairs, their only stops being on account of tires and supplies."
The reference to the value of the longer races is raised in the cutline because this was a topic of debate in the wake of all the carnage at the Speedway just days earlier. Many felt that long races did much to contribute to hazards as the running surface deteriorated when driven over without breaks for maintenance. In the event that long races were conducted, leaders of the sport suggested that drivers had to report to the pits every 100 miles for mechanics to examine the condition of the car and for physicians to assess the driver's fitness to continue. There had even been rumors Marmon considered withdrawing from racing after the fatalities at the Speedway.

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