Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

1954 Indianapolis 500

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Date  May 31, 1954
Winning Entrant  Howard B. Keck
Winner  Bill Vukovich
Pole position  Jack McGrath
1954 Indianapolis 500
Sanctioning body  AAA / World Championship
Average speed  130.840 mph (210.567 km/h)

The 38th International 500-Mile Sweepstakes was held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Monday, May 31, 1954. The event was part of the 1954 AAA National Championship Trail, and was included in the 1954 World Drivers Championship.


Bill Vukovich won his second consecutive 500. Vukovich died the following year attempting to win his third consecutive Indy 500. The race reportedly went 110 laps before the first yellow light.

Time trials

Time trials was scheduled for four days.

  • Saturday May 15 – Pole Day time trials
  • Sunday May 16 – Second day time trials
  • Saturday May 22 – Third day time trials
  • Sunday May 23 – Fourth day time trials
  • Alternates

  • First alternate: Eddie Johnson (#26) — Johnson drove relief during the race
  • Radio

    The race was carried live flag-to-flag on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Radio Network. It was the second time the race was carried in its entirety. The broadcast was anchored by Sid Collins, his third as chief announcer, and seventh year overall with the crew. Charlie Brockman served as booth analyst and statistician, and also reported from victory lane.

    Of note, the network expanded its coverage to include four qualifying wrap-up shows during time trials weekends.

    The network expanded to include four qualifying wrap-up shows, and the number of affiliate stations increased to 210. All five major radio stations in Indianapolis carried the broadcast. The 1954 broadcast is notable in that it featured for the first time the famous phrase "Stay tuned for the Greatest Spectacle in Racing." Due to the increased number of affiliates at the time, the network needed a scripted "out-cue" to alert producers when to manually insert local commercials. A young WIBC marketing staff member named Alice Greene (née Bunger) is credited with inventing the phrase, and chief announcer Sid Collins coined it on-air. It has been used ever since, with all of the chief announcers proudly reciting it during their respective tenures.

    Championship standings after the race

    World Drivers' Championship standings
  • Note: Only the top five positions are included.
  • References

    1954 Indianapolis 500 Wikipedia