Centennial Era Concours dElegance


Some of the world’s finest classic and antique automobiles will take center stage at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Centennial Era Concours d’Elegance on June 18-20, 2010.

Speedway President and COO Joie Chitwood announced the one-time event during the Judges Breakfast on Saturday, March 14, at the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance in Amelia Island, Fla.

The Concours d’Elegance will be a featured event during the Speedway’s Centennial Era, honoring the 100th anniversaries of the opening of the fabled facility in 1909 and the inaugural Indianapolis 500 in 1911. The event will celebrate the significance of vehicular transportation and competition to Indianapolis.

While this will be the first concours to take place at IMS, the Speedway has participated in many concours, including the prestigious Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance annually since the inaugural event in northeastern Florida in 1996.

Bill Spoerle, who leads the automobile restoration team at the IMS Hall of Fame Museum, was a judge at Amelia Island. Other judges at Amelia Island who attended the announcement were Indianapolis 500 winners Parnelli Jones, Jim Rathmann, Johnny Rutherford and Bobby Unser, along with sports car legends Hurley Haywood and Brian Redman, and a host of motorsports personalities, including David Hobbs, Sam Posey and Bob Varsha.

The most historically significant race car at Amelia Island annually receives the Tony Hulman Award, named in honor of the Speedway’s owner from 1945 until his passing in 1977.

A number of cars from the world-famous collection at the IMS Hall of Fame Museum participates every year at Amelia Island. In 2004, eight cars from the Museum were on display at Amelia Island, which that year had a featured marquee of “Legends of Indy.”

Two classic racing machines from the IMS collection were at Amelia Island this year:

•1954/55 Mercedes-Benz W196 that competed in Formula One for a team led by legendary drivers Juan Manuel Fangio and Stirling Moss.

•1957/1958 John Zink Special. 1960 Indianapolis 500 winner Jim Rathmann captured the famous “Race of Two Worlds” in 1958 on the fearsome oval at Monza, Italy, in this Offenhauser-powered roadster designed and built by A.J. Watson. 1952 Indianapolis 500 winner Troy Ruttman also qualified the car on the front row in 1957 at Indy.

Cars at concours d’elegance competitions are judged on their appearance in an elegant setting, with awards presented in a variety of classes.