The Marmon Wasp was raced at the 1911 Indianapolis 500 by Ray Harroun who along with Howard Marmon designed the car for the Marmon Motor Company. Harroun started the inaugural Indianapolis 500 Race from 28th position, moved step by step to the top, and drove the car to victory after tremendous battle with Ralph Mulford in Lozier in the latter stages of the race. Harroun was 29 years old when he achieved the historic victory. He was the only driver competing without driving mechanic. So the car was true single-seater, the only in the field. The car named Wasp because of yellow color and sharp wasp-like tail was full of innovations; it was narrower and lighter than most others in the field. The narrow tail in the style of an airplane tail and stabilizer which is not surprising as Harroun was flying the steel monoplane he designed just one month before the 1911 race. The Wasp used a four shock system to counteract the bumpy conditions of the dirt and gravel surfaces and unpredictability of the new brick surface at Indy. The engine was a special design as well adding two more cylinders to the four used in the Marmon 32 Model which was already quite successful in racing. Harroun, 1910 AAA national champion, retires after the race.
|Ray Harroun||32||Nordyke & Marmon Co.|