Stoddard-Daytons Dominate at IMS - 1909

This image artifact is derived from a photograph published as part of the Indianapolis News coverage of the first automobile race meet at the new Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The publication date was August 21, 1909, and the events were conducted the previous day.
Be sure to click thru to open the attachment because the view is spectacular. It shows the Stoddard-Dayton entries of Carl Wright and Louis Schwitzer leading the way in the 50-mile stock chassis race. There were only five cars in the field and Wright won handily. Little is known of Wright, but Schwitzer, who went on to have a brilliant engineering career, became famous for his work in turbochargers. He was also the winner in the very first auto race at IMS, one day earlier.
Also, note that the amazing panoramic photo is credited to Charles F. Bretzman. It illustrates how fans had crowded the thin railing at the edge of the track, putting themselves in harm's way. This proved a costly mistake on August 22 when two spectators lost their lives. Some sources indicate that Bretzman was the first official photographer of the Indianapolis 500.

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