Firestone Racing was there for the very first Indy 500 in 1911, won by Ray Harroun on Firestone brand tires.  Legend has it that tires played a pivotal role in the outcome of that first race.

Knowing that tire/wheel changes were difficult and time consuming back then, Ray asked the Firestone Racing engineers how fast he could drive without a tire failure.  He was told 75 miles per hour.  Sure enough, on May 30, 1911, he crossed the finish line first with an average speed of 74.602 miles per hour – and he only had to change one tire for the whole race.

So many memorable Indy 500 moments have happened on Firestone brand tires.  Of our 61 Indy 500 victories, 43 were consecutive between 1920 and 1966.  Great names such as Gaston Chevrolet, Wilbur Shaw, AJ Foyt, Jimmy Clark, Mario Andretti and Al Unser have chugged the milk in Victory Circle, thanks in no small part to the reliability of their Firestone race tires.

For many years, Firestone would advertise in newspapers around the nation after the race with artwork featuring all of their Indy 500 victories, proclaiming our Indy success.  This ad typified the “Win on Sunday, Sell on Monday” mentality.

In 2011, the Centennial Anniversary of the first Indy 500, the 62nd driver will cross the  finish line on Firestone tires, and we have re-created that classic ad.  Who do you think it will be?  Comment below and let us know.

Comments

There are 121 comments for this post.

  1. Don Burns on May 20, 2011 2:10 pm
    Don Burns

    Alex Tagliani will win the 2011 Indy 500

  2. John Whetsel on May 20, 2011 2:14 pm
    John Whetsel

    Scott Dixon wins his second Indy 500

  3. Jim Shelton on May 20, 2011 2:23 pm
    Jim Shelton

    Ed Carpenter will win the 2011 Indianapolis 500

  4. John Blanco on May 20, 2011 2:23 pm
    John Blanco

    Marco Andretti will finally break the Andretti curse

  5. PhilipJames on May 20, 2011 2:28 pm
    PhilipJames

    Danica Patrick will add to her consistently good finishes at Indy with a win.

  6. Mindy Stancombe on May 20, 2011 2:29 pm
    Mindy Stancombe

    Dario Franchitti all the way!!!

  7. Philip27 on May 20, 2011 2:30 pm
    Philip27

    My pick is either Dario Franchitti or Danica Patrick… Although we know that Helio is going to win it on the 100th and tie A.J., Al Sr. and Rick with 4 wins!!!

  8. TrueGret on May 20, 2011 2:34 pm
    TrueGret

    Have to go with PT this year ….

  9. Lifesaver 67278 on May 20, 2011 2:35 pm
    Lifesaver 67278

    Helio Castroneves will dance to his fourth Indy win!

  10. Victor on May 20, 2011 2:41 pm
    Victor

    Danica Patrick — She will make history once again!!!!!

  11. Scott on May 20, 2011 2:52 pm
    Scott

    Dario Franchitti for his third.

  12. wes cheek on May 20, 2011 2:58 pm
    wes cheek

    tony kanon for the green team is going to win .

  13. Vince on May 20, 2011 3:00 pm
    Vince

    Vitor will do it this year!!always been there at the end plus having A.J. in his corner,a good combo.

  14. Patia Gaugh on May 20, 2011 3:12 pm
    Patia Gaugh

    Will Power will finally conquer an oval

  15. John B. on May 20, 2011 3:21 pm
    John B.

    Will Power has looked good in practice. He’s my pick to win the Indy 500.

  16. Ray Stahl on May 20, 2011 3:34 pm
    Ray Stahl

    I think Will Power will get his first oval victory at the greatest race course in the world this year. HOWEVER I’ll be cheering on TK like I always do!

  17. Jeff Downer Indianapolis IN on May 20, 2011 3:36 pm
    Jeff Downer Indianapolis IN

    Ed Carpenter and SFR wins the Indianapolis 500.

  18. dimplesforever on May 20, 2011 3:46 pm
    dimplesforever

    I do believe in Marco, it is time for the Andretti family to get back up top!! Go Marco, you will see the sunlight!!!

  19. numbersman on May 20, 2011 4:08 pm
    numbersman

    James Jakes for the win! Eight cars crash during qualifying allowing the English driver to qualify for his first 500. On the 10th lap of the race, Takuma Sato causes a huge chain reaction crash taking out the other 32 cars. The race is red flagged. After a two hour delay and citing a hidden rule that yellow periods can last no longer than 2 hours, Brian Barnhart declares the race must be restarted. When he is reminded that they are under a red flag, not a yellow flag, he responds, “According to the instructions I gave in the driver’s meeting, red is just another shade of yellow.” Jakes is the only car circulating the track when remarkably, E.J. Viso pulls out of pit lane. Apparently, Viso’s crew has so much experience rebuilding cars that they are able to get him back out, albeit 100 laps down. Viso’s team then jumps on the other two KV cars, getting them back in the race as well. A three car KV draft allows Viso to make up the laps and nearly catch Jakes at the finish line for the closest 500 in history – 1/1000 sec!

    Winner’s post race quote:
    Jakes: “This is just incredible. I had no idea the race would take so long. I think I fell asleep a few times out there.” This is a sentiment many fans held as well.

  20. Matt Hazel on May 20, 2011 4:26 pm
    Matt Hazel

    Ryan Briscoe wins.

  21. Cody Cooper on May 20, 2011 4:28 pm
    Cody Cooper

    I think/hope Justin Wilson will win at the Indy 500

  22. Buster Bodine on May 20, 2011 4:32 pm
    Buster Bodine

    Will Power will power his way to win his first oval. He’s got the talent, the team and it’s time.

  23. Nick Kahrs on May 20, 2011 4:33 pm
    Nick Kahrs

    Ed Carpenter has the speed. Sarah Fisher Racing has come a long way.

  24. Darren Young on May 20, 2011 4:41 pm
    Darren Young

    Buddy Rice will show them the way!!

  25. Nick Citrone on May 20, 2011 4:54 pm
    Nick Citrone

    My favorite driver, Alex Tagliani, will be victorious! Fastest in practice Tuesday and so far today!

  26. Derrick on May 20, 2011 5:24 pm
    Derrick

    Simona and HVM kiss the bricks at days end.

  27. Curtis Keisling on May 20, 2011 5:29 pm
    Curtis Keisling

    Ed Carpenter has looked good in every practice session. He has the best shot at knocking the Penske’s and Ganassi’s off the throne.

  28. DKW on May 20, 2011 5:43 pm
    DKW

    While Dario is my fav…if he doesn’t get #3, would LOVE to see Tag or TK.

  29. Floyd on May 20, 2011 6:29 pm
    Floyd

    Helio will do it!!

  30. Jim on May 20, 2011 7:25 pm
    Jim

    Helio Castroneves eAsy

  31. Larry Cansler on May 20, 2011 7:26 pm
    Larry Cansler

    Helio. I want to see him up there with AJ, Rick, and Al.

  32. oldwrench on May 20, 2011 7:54 pm
    oldwrench

    A Penske or Ganassi Car! Any other questions?

  33. Joyce G. on May 20, 2011 7:55 pm
    Joyce G.

    Tony Kanaan is DUE!!!!

  34. Hemi Challenger on May 20, 2011 8:10 pm
    Hemi Challenger

    Graham Rahal will take it this year !
    Danica has no chance !!!!

  35. Stephen on May 20, 2011 8:16 pm
    Stephen

    DANICA WILL WIN SHE IS DO TO WIN THE 500.

  36. Brian Kulig on May 20, 2011 8:40 pm
    Brian Kulig

    Oriol Servia will win the 500. he is on the best team in Indy Car!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  37. Corey R on May 20, 2011 8:41 pm
    Corey R

    Buddy Rice Sneaky Fast Watch Him

  38. Philip27 on May 20, 2011 8:46 pm
    Philip27

    Here are my complete picks:

    Most Possible Winners: Helio Castroneves, Dario Franchitti, Will Power, Danica Patrick

    Most Possible Fails: Ryan Briscoe, Marco Andretti

    Most Pleasant Surprises: Simona De Silvestro (what a story it would be if she does well after her accident), Ed Carpenter, Alex Tagliani, Tony Kanaan (might win it)

    Sleepers: Oriol Servia, Paul Tracy, Ryan Hunter-Reay

    Other Predictions:
    -All 4 women qualify for the 500, Ana does it on Sunday.
    -Helio Castroneves or Will Power wins the pole.
    -Only 1-2 Andretti drivers make the Fast 9 (possibly Marco and Danica).
    -At least 1 big crash during the race.
    -2 years in a row on fuel mileage? I don’t think so, caution within the last 15-20 laps.
    -Helio or Dario lead the most laps.
    -James Jakes, Scott Speed and Ho-Pin Tung fail to make the race, searching for the other 4 (5 if the 57 attempts).

  39. jason on May 20, 2011 8:57 pm
    jason

    dad had a dream sunday night danica will win i say h3lio or tagkiani since he’s been kicking but last 2 days practice until the last 30 minutes or any one from andretti autosports

  40. Deliana on May 20, 2011 9:26 pm
    Deliana

    Helio on the pole and fourth win

  41. bret on May 20, 2011 9:31 pm
    bret

    Buddy Rice. He is finally in decent equipment again. These cars have finished runner up the last couple years with subpar drivers.

  42. TheShadowKnows on May 20, 2011 9:53 pm
    TheShadowKnows

    I am going with this year’s Dark-horse… Jay Howard.

  43. Jason Buck on May 20, 2011 10:35 pm
    Jason Buck

    I think it will be Dixon but I would love to PT get his second.

  44. Tyson McDowell on May 20, 2011 11:13 pm
    Tyson McDowell

    Ed Carpenter will win the Indy 500!

  45. Monte Walls on May 20, 2011 11:15 pm
    Monte Walls

    This is the year Helio Castroneves wins his fourth Indy 500. What a story that will make for the centennial!

  46. IndyNole on May 20, 2011 11:22 pm
    IndyNole

    Alex Tagliani will win

  47. Ronnie on May 21, 2011 12:35 am
    Ronnie

    Dan Wheldon has been runner up the last two years ,he knows how to pace himself and make the right adjustments to car during.the race with full tank or not. Are they double file restart this year

  48. JC Clendening on May 21, 2011 3:49 am
    JC Clendening

    Tagliani says my gut but go for it John An
    drette

  49. Belgian Race Fan on May 21, 2011 3:50 am
    Belgian Race Fan

    I’m crossing my fingers for Bertrand Baguette.

  50. Tom M. on May 21, 2011 7:36 am
    Tom M.

    I’m cheering for Graham Rahal, money on Will Power.

  51. Robert on May 21, 2011 8:50 am
    Robert

    After starting the race with the stomach flu, Ed Carpenter slips out of the SFR machine and lets the boss take over. Indiana is delighted as their sweetheart, Sarah Fisher, wins the Indy 500!

  52. ZoetKees on May 21, 2011 9:47 am
    ZoetKees

    A big surprise… Ho-Pin Tung on his first attempt!

  53. Geoffrey Hobbs on May 21, 2011 10:12 am
    Geoffrey Hobbs

    Dario. ’nuff said.

  54. Lee on May 21, 2011 10:25 am
    Lee

    Well to whoever said Sarah fisher, Sorry but she’s 4 months pregnant lol. My fave driver is helio but I think it will end up being Whoever starts in 3rd place.

  55. pETAR on May 21, 2011 10:29 am
    pETAR

    ….Paul Tracy….. will win(Las Vegas style) the Indy 500! What a story !!!!

  56. Nita on May 21, 2011 10:51 am
    Nita

    I am rooting for Danica! If she qualifies top 10, look out! Simona will do well and Pippa Mann will finish top 20, look out boys, here come the girls!!

  57. Beth B on May 21, 2011 11:42 am
    Beth B

    Marco Andretti…. time to add another Andretti to the Borg-Warner Trophy….

  58. karen on May 21, 2011 3:32 pm
    karen

    my pick is dario for his 3rd ’nuff said

  59. Steve on May 21, 2011 3:36 pm
    Steve

    This is the year for Danica, who ever said she has no chance failed to look at the past races. It is the year of the Danica!!!

  60. mike h on May 21, 2011 4:00 pm
    mike h

    No doubt in my mind…the winner will be Scott Dixon, another feather for TCGR racing’s already full cap!

  61. LR Trotter on May 21, 2011 4:07 pm
    LR Trotter

    My pick to win the 2011 Indianapolis 500 Automobile Race is Ed Carpenter, who will be the driver for Firestone Tires’ 62nd victory in THE RACE.

  62. Alan on May 21, 2011 4:09 pm
    Alan

    Dario will do his stuff and fly the flag for a third time

  63. Drew on May 21, 2011 4:26 pm
    Drew

    How about Vitor? AJ won the 50th and they will need lady luck (as everyone does at Indy) but what a great story. Vitor has been second twice so he can do the job if the team can have a decent day they could be the best surprise of the year.

  64. Larry on May 21, 2011 9:51 pm
    Larry

    simona de slyvestro will win ,,I think shes that good

  65. Drew on May 22, 2011 12:36 am
    Drew

    Scott Dixon will win

  66. james on May 22, 2011 1:46 am
    james

    Townsend Bell hes fast

  67. Luiz Vaz on May 22, 2011 11:03 am
    Luiz Vaz

    Helio (Car Number3) will winn his 4th Indy 500.

  68. Lee on May 22, 2011 12:57 pm
    Lee

    ok looking at qualifying its gonna be Servia. Oriol Servia is going to win the indy 500.

  69. 3SNdot on May 22, 2011 1:36 pm
    3SNdot

    Oriol Servia. Too consistent and too fast not to make it to Victory Lane! Watch out for Wheldon, though!

  70. Curt Massey on May 22, 2011 2:43 pm
    Curt Massey

    Ed Carpenter will win his first 500. Number 62 for Firestone. On the 100th Anniversary. As I am at my 49th 500.

  71. MJZ on May 22, 2011 9:17 pm
    MJZ

    ORIOL SERVIA!!!!!Go Go GO OOOOOOO!!!!

  72. Cindy on May 22, 2011 10:42 pm
    Cindy

    My three picks are Dan Wheldon, Oriol Servia, and Alex Tagliani. If they finish top 3, I’d be happy with any order <3

  73. Eric McClung on May 23, 2011 12:11 am
    Eric McClung

    Oriol Servia is third in the standing and will be starting third, but he will win the Indy 500.

  74. Amanda on May 23, 2011 6:03 am
    Amanda

    Scott Dixon all the way!!!!

    GO SCOTTY!!!!!

  75. Joe Johnson on May 23, 2011 8:10 am
    Joe Johnson

    Marco is my pick, its time, other possibles would be Danica, Helio, Tagliani, and as always my Favorite, has to be Hardluck John Andretti. What a better Closer then to see John Winning the 500 for Andretti Racing……

  76. Dan on May 23, 2011 9:10 am
    Dan

    Paul Tracy will win it this time around!!!

  77. michael steindel on May 23, 2011 12:59 pm
    michael steindel

    Pippa Mann will be the winner.

  78. Steve Bell on May 23, 2011 3:29 pm
    Steve Bell

    Danica all the way!!!!

  79. Jimmy on May 23, 2011 5:52 pm
    Jimmy

    Marco will go from sitting on the bubble last minute to winning the race with an out of sequence fuel stop

  80. JB on May 23, 2011 7:43 pm
    JB

    Bruno…….what’s that?????

    Oh. Nevermind.

  81. Kyle Sullivan on May 23, 2011 10:13 pm
    Kyle Sullivan

    Paul Tracy all the way.

  82. fred weber on May 23, 2011 10:14 pm
    fred weber

    Simona Desilvestro will overcome the painin her hands and win the indy 500

  83. mplsmdj on May 23, 2011 10:19 pm
    mplsmdj

    Carpenter, Patrick or any of the other women, Wheldon, or Hunter-Reay. Hamilton would be a happy shock. Kanaan would be a fun win. Hilldebrand finally breaks the Panther curse would be fun too. Meira with Foyt would be cool It will be an EPIC race, no doubt.
    Thanks Firestone. I wish you’d be around for another 100 years at the yard of bricks!

  84. Dale Brockman on May 23, 2011 10:23 pm
    Dale Brockman

    It is difficult to pick against TCGR!
    S. Dixon or Dario have the speed, fuel mileage and driver expertise. If either one does not win it would be due to a pit conplication of some fashion. Will Power or Helio would be my favorite, but, I hate to admit that I think Chip’s teams and drivers are better!

  85. brent nowostawski,south bend in on May 24, 2011 12:34 am
    brent nowostawski,south bend in

    ED CARPENTER , there are alot of scenarios that would be incredible . can you imagine a carpenter,danica,marco or hunter-reay in A.J.’s car ,win ? tag win for sam schmit?
    as much as i like dario ,anybody but ganassi or penske.
    also,i really feel for bruno….i guess these are more my favorite choices than predictions..so i’ll leave it at that.

  86. Paige on May 24, 2011 1:09 am
    Paige

    Helio Castroneves will win his fourth Indy 500.

  87. chris on May 24, 2011 1:32 am
    chris

    I would really like to see Tagliani or Servia win this since i bet them both at 40-1 pre-qualifying.

  88. Brent on May 24, 2011 3:45 am
    Brent

    Vitor. Vitor. Vitor takes the double checkers on a set of Firestones

  89. BRIAN KULIG on May 24, 2011 11:31 am
    BRIAN KULIG

    ORIOL SERVIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and NEWMAN HAAS RACING THE BEST TEAM IN INDY THEY DONT NEED HELP FROM OTHER TEAMS TO GET IN THEY COME COME TO THE RACES BEST PREPARED HANDLE BUSINESS AND GET IN!!!!!!!!!! BOTH OF THIER DRIVERS AND ONE IS A ROOKIE!!!!!!! THERE SHOULD QUESTIONS ASKED!!!!!!!!! ORIOL SERVIA!!!!!!!! GOT IT!!!!!!!!!

  90. BRIAN KULIG on May 24, 2011 11:37 am
    BRIAN KULIG

    NEWMAN HAAS DOESNT NEED THE POMP AND CIRCUMSTANCE AND THE TV COVERAGE AS PENSKIE AND GANASSI OR ANDRETTI!!!!!! THEY HANDLE BUSINESS YEAR IN AND YEAR OUT!!!!!!!! WERE HAVE ALL THOSE TEAMS OR DRIVERS GET THIER START? THATS RIGHT NEWMAN/HAAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SO AS I SAID BEFORE AND WILL SAY AGAIN SERVIA WILL WIN!!!!!!!! AND HE WILL ALSO BRING NEWMAN/HAAS ANOTHER CHAMPIONSHIP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  91. BRIAN KULIG on May 24, 2011 11:42 am
    BRIAN KULIG

    LETS LIST SOME OF THOSE DRIVERS IF YOU DONT BELEAVE ME,, ANDRETTI,TRACY,FITTAPALDI,MORENO,DAMATTA,BOURDIAS,RAEHAL,JUNQUIERA NEED I SAY MORE!!!!! NEWMAN/HAAS AND SERVIA WILL WIN THE 500 AND THE CHAMPIONSHIP!!!!!!!

  92. Rick Jones on May 24, 2011 11:43 am
    Rick Jones

    Dan Wheldon will do a Rick Mears and stay close most of the race and then put the hammer down for the lead and the win.

  93. MatlsIntnsv on May 24, 2011 12:06 pm
    MatlsIntnsv

    This is why you never see palm readers win the Lottery… Scott Dixon

  94. Dale Spraker on May 24, 2011 12:41 pm
    Dale Spraker

    It would be nice to see Carpenter, Andretti, Hunter-Reay, Tracy, or Danica but none have a real chance against the power in the Gannassi or Penske cars

  95. INDY5QQ on May 24, 2011 1:16 pm
    INDY5QQ

    Tomas Scheckter #07 – - -> Go Tomas!

  96. Norm Sellgren on May 24, 2011 2:11 pm
    Norm Sellgren

    It is surprising that not many ar egiving tagliani his due. Hwe won the pole at the last minut. We, in canada, can hardly wait to see how the race turns out. He WILL win the 500 on the last lap pass of etierh Penske or Ganassi. You read it here first. GO TAGS and Team Schmidt! Get ‘er done boys!

  97. Shawn on May 24, 2011 10:19 pm
    Shawn

    I’d like Danica to win, but My Pick is….Dario For Back-To-Back Wins!

  98. Cliff on May 24, 2011 11:29 pm
    Cliff

    Bruno!
    No wait, he’s out now. Boo on the deal. Busine$$ first?

    GO TAG!

  99. Cliff on May 24, 2011 11:33 pm
    Cliff

    Oh, and the deal bought Danica & Marco each another spot in the grid.
    Boo.
    Go-go Sam Schmidt!

  100. Jorge on May 25, 2011 10:11 am
    Jorge

    ABP ….Anybody But Penske!

  101. Mark on May 25, 2011 12:42 pm
    Mark

    TONY KANAAN WILL FINALLY WIN THE INDY 500!

  102. James on May 25, 2011 2:12 pm
    James

    Charlie Kimball !!!

  103. Diamond Dave on May 25, 2011 3:18 pm
    Diamond Dave

    Vitor is my choice this year!

  104. Roland on May 25, 2011 3:30 pm
    Roland

    NO COVERAGE OF THE INDY 500 ON GERMAN TV! CAN YOU BELIEVE THIS? My pick is… SPIDERMAN!!

  105. Lorraine on May 25, 2011 4:03 pm
    Lorraine

    MARCO TO WIN GO MARCO!

  106. Jim Johnson on May 25, 2011 6:33 pm
    Jim Johnson

    Ed Carpenter will win the 500. Sarah Fisher will become the first woman owner to win.

  107. Vic Vendrell on May 25, 2011 7:22 pm
    Vic Vendrell

    My pick is going to be a dark horse this year.
    John Andretti. He has quietly been the fastest of the Andretti Autosport Cars…and nobody knows the track better.

  108. Vic Vendrell on May 25, 2011 7:31 pm
    Vic Vendrell

    Afterthought….
    Weather forecast is “partly sunny with a high of 88 degrees.
    This means we’re going to have a race track that will change several times before the day ends (probably turning hot and greasy).
    That’s why I’m sticking with John Andretti.

  109. Gil on May 25, 2011 8:23 pm
    Gil

    Danica is ready to make history again.

  110. Wes Edwards on May 25, 2011 9:50 pm
    Wes Edwards

    Tony Kanaan gets his Indy win on Sunday.

  111. John Yates on May 26, 2011 6:28 am
    John Yates

    JR Hildebrand in the National Guard car in Victory Circle. Panther Racing, National Guard, and rookie JR Hildebrand will shock the racing world!

  112. Russ Santos on May 26, 2011 9:35 am
    Russ Santos

    John Andretti will bring home the win

  113. Harvey Bryant on May 26, 2011 2:44 pm
    Harvey Bryant

    He’s had the best car all month so barring any mistakes Alex Tagliani should be celebrating Sunday night.

  114. Andy on May 26, 2011 3:52 pm
    Andy

    Dixon (although I’m hoping for Kanaan)

  115. dawn on May 26, 2011 8:56 pm
    dawn

    dario will get #3.

  116. Phil Ellis on May 27, 2011 5:01 am
    Phil Ellis

    JUSTIN WILSON will win the Indy 500

  117. Ria on May 27, 2011 8:24 am
    Ria

    Dario Franchitti!!!

  118. GJ on May 27, 2011 1:21 pm
    GJ

    The Thrill From West Hill – Paul Tracy – will get his second Indy 500 victory! I know, because I was then and will be Sunday in Turn Three…

  119. David Ashmore on May 27, 2011 4:00 pm
    David Ashmore

    Ed Carpenter will not have to go into the pits when they are closed and will win the race

  120. ether on May 27, 2011 4:24 pm
    ether

    Helio gets a 4th. But watch out for Wheldon!!!

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