For my dad and I, the drive to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on the day of the 500 is almost as fun as the race itself. Almost. We crank up the radio to hear the race day coverage, only to turn it down every few minutes to talk about a great historical moment or an interesting fact we’re sure the other doesn’t know. It doesn’t matter what the topic is – it’s Indy related and that’s all that counts.
In 2005, the year of my inauguration into this grand tradition, my dad did the unthinkable. I’m not sure whether I actually asked the question or whether he was just showing off his unparalleled memory skills, but the topic of past race winners came up. This is where I should note that my dad’s history with this race (and the sport in general) is beyond fantastic. But that’s for another post – let’s just say he knows everything about everything. On this particular day, my dear old dad proceeded to list every single 500 winner going back to 1939. Yes folks, 1938 is when it got “a little fuzzy” for him. Which is normal when you’re trying to remember race winners from BEFORE YOU WERE BORN.
‘So the guy’s got a memory,’ you say. To which I say, ‘that’s my dad you’re talking about.’ What I’m getting at is it makes any experience that much more exciting to be with someone who shares the same passion you do. Suddenly I’m very aware that I just used the word passion when talking about my dad, so I feel the need to change lanes here.
The point I’m trying to make is best summed up in my very own personal ad:
SWF seeks SIRLF (Serious Indy Racing League Fan) as a fun, knowledgeable companion to attend nearly all events on the IndyCar Series calendar (Indy 500 excluded – already have standing reservations with ridiculously cool father). Tired of conning girlfriends into attending by promising them that the drivers are attractive. Seeking someone who appreciates the fact that yes, I must watch every lap of practice and qualifying, attend the autograph session, show up early to the race and scream incessantly when one of my drivers makes any sort of a spectacular maneuver. And indeed, I must talk about the race the entire way home, recounting every detail, because it’s what I love. I am Indy… are you?
If you know anyone who fits this description, let me know. Then I’ll be covered if it doesn’t work out between me and Marco Andretti.