The "Snake-Pit" at the Indianapolis 500 was not the morally safe organized vendor demo and beer garden presently occupying the inside of turn-three. The Snake-Pit was where I saw real boobs when I was 11. It's a collection of motorcycle and beer and mud-wrestling fans that were also enthusiasts of anything else as long as it was not proper social convention. Real boobs! For the first time! Duude! They were awesome...
The snake pit was inside turn-One. The snake pit was for the real fan of not events but by and for the fans of gathering together - during whatever event was at hand it didn't matter. Please peruse the pictures of what it used to be like (Courtesy: Indystar.com) and, like me, I'm sure you will thank heaven for advancements in deodorant, sunscreen, decent beer, and facility drainage.
Inside of the 2.5 mile around speedway we can fit fifteen rose bowl stadiums. This is a lot of area to set up whatever camp you wish. Up until the 80's it was a largely undeveloped area. Cookouts, parties, and picnics were always part of the speedway history since it's inception over a hundred years ago but the partying really started to get big in the whole of the 70's and continued on until the speedway did something about it. They couldn't have flashing and mud-wrestling and streaking and...well...such an uncouth mess in a reputable establishment could they? They ended that with the construction of disabled viewership stands where the "pit" was inside of turn-one. They are nice I must admit and there is still a large motorcycle parking area nearby, but the "pit" moved on to the inside of turn-four, where nothing existed. Perfect debauchery landscaping to park the rockin' art-van.
Turn-four was lacking. The foot traffic in the area just wasn't there, so the relentless shouts of the terrifically successful "Show us your tits!" had no one to fall upon. The main gate was at the south of the track by turn-one. A museum was there. People had to go past turn-one to get to their seats or other places to view the qualifying and the race. Turn-four provided the worst possible thing: since there was zero flow of people traffic, people couldn't see them partying and have a chance to join in, or score a doobie, or a free beer in passing, or oblige the nice gentleman asking to see your tits. (This is the reason I was able to see boobs for the first time in my life as we were moving from the gate toward the garages we had passes for.) The "pit" in turn-four was not the same. That didn't matter, the speedway decided to get rid of them all by building a road course where they were. I suspect that was the real reason to bring F1 to the track. A $100 million investment in ridding the country club of the undesirables.
The snake pit still exists however not in the sense of it's namesake. To bring back any of it's former "glory", they would have to add copious amounts of drug use, uunrestrict the beer consumption, introduce mud wrestling and the world-class event of sleep-drunking, not to mention art-vans you were not supposed to knock on the door of if it was moving on it's own.
If attending the race this year, i hope you can get by without the real speedway experience and everything that it adds to your personal growth and development as a human being.
[EDIT: i did the math, I was 12]