As of September 2014, the record top speed for an Indy car is 242.333 mph. This was accomplished by Mauricio Gugelmin in 1997. He did this during a practice session at what was then the California Speedway.
One of the most famous IndyCar races is the Indianapolis 500. Known as the Indy 500 for short, the first race took place on May 30, 1911. As the name suggests, the race was 500 miles long. The first time the race was run, 40 drivers competed. The winner of the Indy 500 was Ray Harroun, who won a purse of $14,250. The average speed during that first race was 74.59 mph, and the total time was six hours and 42 minutes.
From May 1911 to May 2014, the Indy 500 has taken place every year at the end of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It remains 500 miles in length. On May 25, 2014, Ryan Hunter-Reay won the race and took home $2.49 million. His final lap speed was 220.927 mph.
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is located 5 miles from downtown Indianapolis.The track seats 257,325 people, not including the number of people in the infield. As of May 2004, it is estimated that 300,000 people can attend the race.