INDIANAPOLIS — What better way to take in the Indianapolis 500 every year than atop the stadium with a camera?

That’s the way Kendallville’s Chris McCoy has been taking in the race for years.

He’s been shooting photos at the iconic Hoosier race for two decades and went again this year to snap photos of the lead up to the race as well as the race itself.

Here’s what McCoy had to say about his many years photographing the Indy 500:

How many years have you been shooting photos at the Indy 500?

20 years

What’s special about this race that keeps drawing you back every year?

It’s an event that draws over 300,000 people to see the race. The traditions and ceremonies that occur every year, the drivers and all of the people in the media that I have met and become friends with are part of the reason I go back every year. It is really special to be a part of the event each year that some media representatives and fans that I know have been to more than 50 races in a row.

My mom and dad took me to see my first race in 197,3 and I took my oldest son to his first race in 2000. It is one of my favorite places on earth and makes it even more special that it is held in Indiana.

What kind of camera setup do you have to shoot the race?

I use a two camera body set-up, one with a short lens for close-ups and a long lens for distance shots. The camera bodies are a Nikon D2H, long lens and a Nikon D200, short lens.

How challenging is it to shoot the race?

There are over 500 credentialed media members each year for the race which is challenging in itself. For me the biggest challenge is trying to get good pictures in a crowd of sometimes up to 30 other photographers. So, I look for certain angles and spots to shoot from that may not be photographed by many other photographers, such as what I did for the 2019 race, on the roof on top of Turn 1 next to the Turn 1 spotters stand.

What did you think of this year’s 500?

One of the best ever, lots of in-field passing, weather was great and the best car won. The last 13 laps of this years race will become famous for the competitiveness that was put on display.

What’s been your favorite moment ever covering the 500?

The 2006 race on the last lap, when Sam Hornish passed Marco Andretti for the lead and win in the fourth turn on the last lap. That was unbelievable and very thrilling.

For additional photos taken by McCoy from this year’s race, view online at

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