Indiana: 50th Hoosier Hundered tradition continues

50th "Hoosier Hundred" May 24 in Indianapolis. The "Hoosier Hundred," an American racing tradition for a half-century, witnesses its historic 50th running May 24 at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis, Ind., two nights before the 86th...

50th "Hoosier Hundred" May 24 in Indianapolis.

The "Hoosier Hundred," an American racing tradition for a half-century, witnesses its historic 50th running May 24 at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in Indianapolis, Ind., two nights before the 86th running of the World's Most Spectacular Sporting Event - the Indianapolis 500.

Round three of the 2002 USAC Weld Racing Silver Crown Series, the 100-mile race at the legendary 1-mile Indianapolis dirt track was not on the original series schedule released in January. Race organizer Dennis Wood, however, with assistance from a group of Indianapolis businessmen with extensive interest and involvement in auto racing, has announced a new promotional group which will present the golden running of the famed racing classic.

Wood, whose innovative ideas and determined efforts helped create and foster the success of the popular "Copper World Classic" at Phoenix, Ariz. each year for the past quarter-century, will team with Team Six-R Racing principals in the promotion of the "Hoosier Hundred," whose history dates back to Bob Sweikert's victory in the 1953 inaugural. Sweikert went on to win the Indianapolis 500 and was one of seven "Hoosier Hundred" winners whose names grace the famed Borg-Warner Trophy at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame Museum.

Team Six-R Racing principals include USAC car owners Darryl Guiducci and Gary Beaver, plus Russ Dellen, Bill Ertel, Tom Johnson, Steve Riddle, Mike Spaulding and Randy Steenbergen. Each shares enthusiasm for the sport and the desire to continue the great tradition of this significant motorsports event.

"I'm excited that we have finalized the 50th running of this race," said Wood, who has been involved in USAC races at the Indiana State Fairgrounds for several years. "The history of this event is well documented and it continues to be one of the most coveted races on the American open-wheel calendar. Last year's race was a true classic, one of the best ever held at the storied dirt oval, and we really look forward to this year's renewal. The fact that it's two nights before the 500 creates an international audience."

Tony Elliott of Kokomo, Ind. has won the last two "Hoosier Hundreds," joining such former race winners as Jeff Gordon, Donnie Beechler, A.J. Foyt, Mario Andretti, Al Unser, Parnelli Jones, Rodger Ward, Gary Bettenhausen and Jack Hewitt.

The 100-mile race boosts the 2002 USAC Weld Racing Silver Crown Series slate to 11 races, six on dirt and five on pavement. The next Silver Crown race is scheduled April 19-21 as part of Nazareth (Pa.) Speedway's Firestone Indy 225 weekend.

Dave Steele of Tampa, Fla. won the 2002 series opener at Phoenix International Raceway March 17. The fastest driver in series history, he leads the series standings going into round two at Nazareth.

Prior to the May 24 race, fans will be able to secure $5.00 discount coupons for the "Hoosier Hundred" from Indianapolis-area Kroger stores.

--USAC--

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Series USAC
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Donnie Beechler , Mario Andretti , Al Unser Sr. , Parnelli Jones , Dave Steele , Jack Hewitt , Tony Elliott , Rodger Ward , A.J. Foyt