Crossing, part of the state's Pete Dye Golf Trail,
includes four holes inside the famed Indianapolis
Ind. ó Many golfers no doubt come to the Brickyard
Crossing golf course to play the four holes situated
inside the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
those four holes are an unusual treat, with such great
views of the speedway that youíll consider knocking
balls onto the racetrack just for fun, imagining what
would happen if three-time Indy 500 champion Dario
Franchitti or this yearís winner, Tony Kanaan, were
racing by at that moment.
indeed, there are practice days in mid-May, before the
race gets underway on Memorial Day weekend, when you
actually can play as cars speed around the track.
the other 14 holes on the course, all in the shadow of
the grandstands, some of them adjacent to the track and
some next to concession stands, are no less spectacular.
Crossing brings together the engine muscle of the nationís
most famous auto-racing track and the finesse of a golf
course, a mix of speedway asphalt and fairway grass.
is a challenging golf course of undulating fairways,
blind approach shots on some holes and tough greens that
should help make Indianapolis a destination for avid
golfers, especially those looking for something a little
out of the ordinary.
round or two at the Brickyard Crossing course can be the
highlight of a weekend in this sports-focused city,
which counts the NFL Colts, NBA Pacers and Indians AAA
baseball team among its hometown squads and will host
the NCAA Final Four basketball tournament in 2015.
down the street from the golf course and inside the
track is the Hall of Fame Museum, where you can inspect
championship cars dating to the raceís earliest days.
the cityís restaurants to the mix, such as the famed
St. Elmo Steak House, a popular spot for professional
athletes and broadcasters and known for its shrimp
cocktails, and Indianapolis can compete with the more
traditional golf destinations.
a less expensive but no less tasty choice, the Mug n Bun
drive-in, a local favorite just south of the track,
offers a breaded pork tenderloin sandwich that is
quintessentially Hoosier, as well as homemade root beer
and classic shakes.
golf at Brickyard Crossing puts a premium on accuracy;
leave your tee shot on the wrong side of the fairway and
you will find yourself grappling with a blind approach
to the green. Thatís what happens on the 3rd hole, a
par 4 where itís tough to even see the green from the
left side of the fairway, which is where my tee shot
makes the approach shot tricky; massive, deep Pete
Dye-designed bunkers sitting behind and on the right
side of the green are waiting to swallow errant shots.
the 6th hole, you go through a tunnel that runs under
the racetrack to holes 7 through 10, where pine trees
dot the landscape and almost make you forget youíre
inside the speedway.
the day I was on the golf course, workers were readying
the track for the Brickyard 400, a NASCAR race, and you
could almost smell the fuel and hear the thunder of the
Witek and sons Chris and Timothy were on the golf
course, too, with their friend Jack Wheeler, all of them
from the Indianapolis area. Wheeler had not played the
course for years, he said, and the Witeks had never
played the Brickyard.
inside the racetrack in the middle of their round, they
said, was exciting.
just amazed how big it is," Wheeler said.
they also agreed that the golf course was a fine
challenge without the added attraction of the racetrack,
and they would play it even if it were situated
a great course either way," Chris Witek said.
golf course originally was built in 1929 and consisted
of 27 holes, with nine crowded inside the track. Dyeís
redesign in the early 1990s brought the course to the
modern era. Only four holes remain inside the track, so
players never feel crowded.
course has been listed on Golf Digestís Top 100 public
golf courses, and in the past it has hosted PGA Tour
players and tournaments. It generally receives raves
from golfers and commentators alike who see the
inside-the-track holes as a surprising element on an
otherwise fine course.
back outside the racetrack, you stay close to
grandstands and concession booths, where on a race day
you could buy Indy Dogs or Brickyard Burgers. On the
13th hole, the green is nearly under the massive
grandstands. After that, the course moves away from the
the speedway is always in mind. From almost anywhere on
the golf course, the grandstands can be seen, as can the
massive Pagoda, which houses race control, safety and
timing facilities as well as broadcast booths.
juxtaposition of golf course and speedway should land
the Brickyard on any golferís bucket list.
COURSE: The Brickyard Crossing golf course is at 4400 W.
16th St., Speedway, Ind. (surrounded by Indianapolis);
317-492-6572; brickyardcrossing.com. Regular season
rates are $100. After 4 p.m., twilight rates of $60
apply. The replay rate is $50. There are blackout dates
for the Indianapolis 500 and two other events.
MUSEUM: The Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame
Museum is open every day but Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. from March through October
and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. from November through February.
Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children 6-15.
Info: 317-492-6784, tinyurl.com/indymuseum
St. Elmo Steak House, 127 S. Illinois St., Indianapolis;
317-635-0636, stelmos.com and Mug n Bun, 5211 W. 10th
St., Indianapolis; 317-244-5669, mug-n-bun.com