|Indy 500 Highlight Films - The Atomic Age : 1953-1963
|NOTE : Please understand that these highlight reels were originally shot on film, not video. I am trying to be
as honest as I can about the film quality. These films were originally intended for the smaller TV sets
of the 60's, so they may appear grainy on the big TV sets of today. All films are in COLOR.
|DVD Length : 123 minutes Quality : Good to VG+
|Vintage Indy 500 Highlight Films from the vaults! You'll see the courage these drivers had back
in the 1953-1963 time period, with open cockpits, a lap belt, oil spattering on their goggles, and
the occasional cigarette being thrown out as they go on a qualifying lap! For true devotees of
the Indianapolis 500, these films show how they did it "old school", back when many of the
drivers were as rough and tough as WWII fighter pilots. All films are in color.
|1953 Indy 500 Highlights - 10 min (Condition : VG)
|Ignoring the blistering heat and leaving his fellow drivers in his fumes, Bill Vukovich put on a dominating performance in
winning his first Indy 500. The air temperature was in the high 90s, causing the track temperature to reach 130
degrees. While most of the other competitors needed relief drivers because of the oppressive heat, Vukovich was one
of the five to stay in his cockpit for the full 500 miles. Averaging 128.74 miles per hour in his Fuel Injection Special, the
Mad Russian was an easy winner, finishing 3½ minutes ahead of runner-up Art Cross. The 195 laps Vukovich led was
the second best for any Indy winner; only Billy Arnold in 1930, with 198 laps, was in front more often.
|1954 Indy 500 Highlights - 13 min (Condition : VG+)
|Bill Vukovich is back again, capturing back-to-back Indy 500 titles. This film contains
some pre-race ceremonies, and has some good pit stop footage.
|1956 Indy 500 Highlights - 16 min (Condition : Good)
|The track had been resurfaced with asphalt with only a small line of bricks still remaining on
the main stretch. With the new surface, a new track record was expected. Pat Flaherty did
not disappoint with a pole speed of 145.596 mph (234.314 km/h), over 4.5 mph (7.2 km/h)
faster than the 1954 record. Flaherty takes the win. The film quality on this reel is "good", as
there is some choppy (framing) issues, but very watchable and clear.
|1959 Indy 500 Highlights - 20 min (Condition : VG)
|The film quality on this reel is clear, but there is some choppy (framing) issues. Still very
watchable. Some qualifying is also shown, and Rodger Ward takes the win by over 20
seconds over 2nd place Jim Rathmann. This film has some 1959-era singing, sort of a
"Ballad Of The Indy 500 Driver" style of song, very popular at the time.
|1960 Indy 500 Highlights - 20 min (Condition : VG+)
|This year the situation is reversed, as Jim Rathmann takes the win over Rodger Ward. But not
without some fantastic back-and-forth action in the closing laps as they exchange the lead
several times. Some qualifying included. Quality of this film is very good.
|1962 Indy 500 Highlights - 20 min (Condition : VG+)
|Track temps are a staggering 142 degrees, but that doesn't stop Parnelli Jones from finally breaking
the 150 mph barrier, a cause of great celebration by the fans and Parnelli's pit crew. Rodger Ward is
back with a vengeance, and takes his 2nd Indy 500 win. Quality of this film is very good.
|1963 Indy 500 Highlights - 21 min (Condition : VG+)
|A significant race for Indy racing fans, as rookie Jim Clark's Lotus-Ford becomes the first viable
rear-engined car to challenge the dominant front-engined cars, a stallwart of Indy racing since
1911. Eventual winner Parnelli Jones is driving a beautiful A.J. Watson designed front-engined
racer, but Jim Clark takes second place in his rear-engined Lotus, bringing Indy cars into the
modern age. Rookies Bobby Unser and Art Malone qualify are also shown qualifying for the race.
A sensational crash by Jack Turner is caught on camera, and reviewed in slow motion.
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