Friday, August 05, 2005

Street Racing Popularity Nothing New

In 1912 the Vanderbilt Cup Race was a 300 Mile event run on the streets of Northwest Milwaukee. According to the Milwaukee Journal of October 3, 1912. The race was run October 2 and was attended by 60,000 paid and an estimated equal number of non paying observers from other vantage points around the course.


WickerBill Sez;

Where has street racing been for the last 93 years?

As a former resident of Milwaukee I question the wisdom of holding a race on October 2!

How did they promote this event and get 60,000 paid at the event? Was there even 60,000 people in Milwaukee in 1912? Actually there were 375,000 residents in 1910! If no one attended from other cities and in those days it's not likely many did then the promoters were able to pull in 15 % of the cities residents to the race.

If Milwaukee hosted a street race today would 60 thousand show up? 15% of the metro area would be approximately 450,000. Now that's 450,000 different sets of eyes not a three day total!

Why has the interest in oval track racing declined or was it ever a big deal? The Milwaukee mile is as convenient to get to as any street race would be, it is located in State Fair park and at most a 15-20 minute drive from almost any where in the Metro area yet fewer fans showed up for two OW events this year, than did for the single 1912 street race. Oddly the seating capacity of the Mile is approximately 45,000 and that's after recent seating additions. This would seem to suggest that the Mile has never expected large crowds.

Is it all about the personalities?

This deal begs many questions!


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