IMS apologizes for parking, crowd movement issues before Indianapolis 500 (Update)

UPDATE A reader writes, Dear, I was glad to see the report about IMS apologizing for the crowd flow issues on Sunday. I arrived an hour and a half before the green flag and finally got to my seat on lap 103.

Will-call at the Northwest Vista was downright scary. We stood in line for well over two hours. People were pushing and shoving to the point that folks were having panic attacks. Several fights broke out when idiots started cutting in line. Finally the state police shut the whole thing down until two distinct lines were formed, something they should have done to begin with.

There were only three poor people in the ticket trailer trying to process what looked like thousands of race-goers. It was a major meltdown of what should have been a straightforward process. Regards, Bill Gerken

05/28/13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials apologized and vowed to fix issues that created a crush of fans trying to get into the Indianapolis 500 right as the race started.

New restrictions on cooler sizes put in place after the Boston Marathon bombings resulted in some fans being turned away at the gate.

New parking restrictions created additional issues, as those with prepaid parking passes drove into infield parking.

The result was massive crowds that snaked into streets at entrances.

"It was terrible. We came through the gate … and it was really crammed," said race fan John McCorkhill, from Virginia.

Some fans said they waited in lines for up to two hours.

Crowd concerns were the only blemish on an otherwise great race.

"I think it was one of those perfect storms of a lot of things – post-Boston regulations, weather impact, new parking restrictions in the town of Speedway and here at the facility," said Doug Boles, chief operating officer of IMS. "It's one of those things we apologize for and have to fix. It's not fair to our fans.

Most of the longer lines formed closer to race time as security officials checked coolers and bags.

Fans who lined up to purchase tickets to next year's race hope a better plan to get into the track is in place next year. TheIndyChannel

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