Thousands of fans enjoy day 1 of the Red Bull Air Race

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway staff expects about 40,000 people to attend the Air Race. (WISH photo)
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway staff expects about 40,000 people to attend the Air Race. (WISH photo)

SPEEDWAY (WISH) — Organizers are expecting an estimated 40,000 people in town this weekend for the Red Bull Air Race in Speedway. For the first time the race is being held in central Indiana.

Thousands of fans got a chance to enjoy day one filled with fun activities and entertainment. Some traveled from other states and others did not have to go very far.

Doors at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway opened at 10 Saturday morning to fans of all ages from kids to adults.

“We really looking forward to the actual race tomorrow the qualifying runs this is just nuts,” said Bob Wall, visiting from Colorado.

Wall and his wife bought their tickets three months ago.

“We’re excited this is the first air race we’ve ever seen in person we’ve seen it on TV many many times,” said Wall.

They are from Colorado and extended their vacation with a stop in Indianapolis. He heard about the race while watching TV at a restaurant.

“Here I see Indianapolis October 1st and 2nd, well crazy we’re coming through Indianapolis on the first,” he said. “We can plan around through the first and that’s what brought us here.”

Fans looked to the sky taking pictures during practice. The airplanes did loops and turns going more than 200 miles per hour.

“A little mind blowing just seeing actually the altitude they are flying,” said Paul Trahan, visiting from Louisiana. “I mean the planes are a lot smaller too in person than you see on TV.”

But the excitement did not end there. Fans also got a taste of other extreme acts, like bike and helicopter stunts.

Brandon Campbell brought his four kids.

“The first time they’re experiencing any kind of racing at all but they’re pretty impressed by it so far,” said Campbell.

Campbell is from Westfield. He said the trip saved his family a lot of time and money.

“We’ve always been interested in the air race but this is our first time coming out and we were going to go to the Detroit one but this is so much closer,” he said.

24 Hour News 8 checked with police on security, Speedway police said they have extra officers doing patrols, but nothing more than usual.

Doors open Sunday morning at 10 a.m. with the race beginning at 12 p.m.