A Little Friday File Fun (05/15)

May 15, 2009 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - They say that a picture is worth a thousand words...

Well, here’s a couple of thousand….

Now you see why those bridge height signs are so important.  

If you can’t see the above video, try  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9LK2MRapb8&feature=player_embedded

And here's a couple of thousand more...

There are those who plan to set records - and those who simply have it thrust upon them (the "fun" starts about 3 minutes in).  

If you can't see the above video, try http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=6ca_1242245717

Well, here's a couple of thousand...

If you're having a bad day - or even if you're having a really good day - this will make you smile:  

...and here's another thousand...

- - - In Los Angeles, California , a Japan Airlines Boeing 747, with 245 passengers on board - - - sucked up a large metal baggage container as the plane prepared to depart from Los Angeles International Airport - - - and you can see it at http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/travel/news/article6271150.ece

TRIVIAL PURSUITS :   Memorial Day is, of course, a national holiday to commemorate those in the military that have given their life in service to this country.   For many it also marks the beginning of the summer vacation (and driving) season, and frequently the reopening of swimming pools and beaches.  

Of course, for many it also marks a very special sports event - as it has since 1911 (1) .   Do you know the event?  

The Indianapolis 500.

Other fun facts:

The race consists of 200 laps (2.5 miles each).

There are 33 cars in the starting field, and not by accident.  After 40 cars started in the inaugural race in 1911, the Contest Board of the American Automobile Association (AAA), the sanctioning body at the time, mandated a formula for limiting the size of a starting field according to the size of the track. It was determined that the safe distance between each car spread equally around a course would be 400 feet, thereby limiting the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway to 33 cars. Speedway President Carl Fisher, however, placed a limit of only 30 cars for the "500" between 1912 and 1914 and did not adopt AAA's 33 maximum until 1915. Although there had been numerous occasions between 1912 and 1928 when the field was not filled, the allowed number was increased during the Depression years to 40 cars between 1930 and 1932 (only 38 made it in 1930) and further to 42 in 1933. The maximum has been at 33 ever since 1934, although extenuating circumstances expanded the field to 35 starters in 1979 and 1997. 

Three drivers have won the Indianapolis 500 four times each: A.J. Foyt (1961, 1964, 1967, 1977); Al Unser (1970, 1971, 1978, 1987) and Rick Mears (1979, 1984, 1988, 1991).

Five drivers have won the race two years in a row: Wilbur Shaw (1939-40), Mauri Rose (1947-48), Bill Vukovich (1953-54), Al Unser (1970-71) and Helio Castroneves (2001-02).

The youngest to win; Troy Ruttman , who was 22 years, 80 days old when he won the 36 th Indianapolis 500 on May 30, 1952.  The oldest was Al Unser was 47 years, 360 days old when he won the 71 st Indianapolis 500 on May 24, 1987.

Five women have raced in the Indianapolis 500: Janet Guthrie (1977-79), Lyn St. James (1992-97, 2000), Sarah Fisher (2000-04, 2007), Danica Patrick (2005-07) and Milka Duno (2007).

Eight drivers have won as Indianapolis 500 rookies: Ray Harroun (1911, inaugural race), Jules Goux (1913), Rene Thomas (1914), Frank Lockhart (1926), George Souders (1927), Graham Hill (1966), Juan Pablo Montoya (2000), Helio Castroneves (2001).

Here's some other interesting trivia - and a glossary of terms:  http://www.indy500.com/images/stats/pdfs/interesting_facts_and_figures.pdf

(1) The race did not take place in 1917-18 and 1942-45 due to America's involvement in the world wars.