The Lexington racetrack, after a slow start in 1926, had a very busy second season. As the 1927 season was winding down, the big excitement that fall was that the track was going to host the Midwestern Nationals in early October right here in our city. If you were a race fan, this was a very big deal, and the anticipation and excitement in this area was high. To help with the auto congestion on Route 4 that fall, the track management even decided to run a special bus from Bloomington to the September and
October races.On October 3, 1927, the following article appeared in the Daily Pantagraph about the big championship race: "Lexington Speedway to Be Scene of Final Race. With the announcement of the Midwestern Championship auto races scheduled for the Lexington speedway on Sunday afternoon, October 9, preparations are now quickly being formulated by manager Bert W. Schell of the Lexington Race Track Association to care for one of the biggest crowds that has ever witnessed an auto race from the Lexington track.
Drivers from all parts of the middle west are expected in for this race. Among those coming will be the winners of previous fast events on the Lexington track and other record holders. D. D. Morris, driving the famous Sonny Talamont's Rojo Special 22, will be back to defend his title, won in the semi-final championship race on September 25. Orville Zook will be there, attempting to drive the Quensel 666 to the championship place after having to be content with second place after the last two events in Lexington.
Other drivers expected back for the big event at Lexington on October 9 include Art Kane in the new Gallivan 8, Earl Phillips in Lexington 88, Benny Shoaf in his famous No. 5, and perhaps 'Chuck' Bane, who is still recuperating from injuries received a few weeks ago in a race. Time trials will start at 10 a.m., unless delayed by unforeseen weather conditions as in the last race. The first preliminary race starts at 1:30 p.m. followed by two other three-mile preliminaries, one three-mile consolation and the 25-mile championship event."
No doubt nearly every race fan in the area was planning to spend that Sunday afternoon in Lexington at the racetrack, and some may have come in the evening before, spending the night at the Cottage Hotel (later the Plaza), where they could also enjoy its dining room specials. All of the local food vendors were swamped by visitors buying food to take to the races. Just imagine the traffic in the area, especially near the track on that fine fall day.
Reports were that the attendance was good for the race, and drivers pronounced the track to be in great shape. As it turned out, the championship honors that day went to G. A. Hardy of Chicago, and the track management was already plenning special programs for next year!