As you read this, Susan and I are (hopefully) well on our way to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. I spent three spouseless days there last weekend for the Grand Prix, before returning home for four days. Now I’m heading back for three more days with wife in tow for Qualifications for the 98th Running of the Indianapolis 500.
Archive for the Indianapolis 500 Category
When James Hinchcliffe was hit in the head by flying debris in the Grand Prix of Indianapolis on Saturday; it didn’t take long for many on Twitter to start beating the predictable drum for enclosed cockpits in IndyCar. When I offered up an argument against that stance in less than 140 characters, I was shot down and told to stop holding on to something that was extremely unsafe just for tradition’s sake. I chose to bow out of the Twitter argument quickly; mainly because I had a wrap-up post to write and did not have time to carefully craft my words to fit into a Twitter box. Plus, I kept hearing the words of our friend Pressdog ringing in my ear – “Never engage the crazies”.
One comment we always hear every March is how the first two days of the NCAA Tournament are the two most unproductive days of the year in American business. It used to be that there would be an epidemic of “March Flu” as employees would mysteriously call in sick that Thursday and Friday to stay home and watch a basketball marathon.
The Indianapolis Motor Speedway lost another one of its iconic legends yesterday. Famed chassis builder A.J. Watson passed away at the age of ninety, after suffering a heart-attack last week. It’s another link to the storied past of The Speedway that is now gone.
Track activity picked up considerably around 3:30 this afternoon. All of the Andretti Autosport cars were on the track – including the No.26 of Kurt Busch. EJ Viso turned a few laps in the No.27 assigned to James Hinchcliffe. As I type, there is still no further word on his condition or availability to drive.
It seems that most of the IMS employees and the teams are suffering from a bit of a hangover after yesterday’s Grand Prix. Things are definitely on the quiet side. I went out to watch cars hit the track at noon. There was one ceremonial first lap turned by Helio Castroneves in his beautiful throwback Pennzoil livery that looks just like the Rick Mears cars of the eighties. After that, there was nothing. There were no cars on pit road and it was very quiet.
Good morning from a sunny and warm Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It seems strange to be calling this Opening Day, since cars have been on the track since this past Thursday. But today is the first day for cars to take to the famed oval – in the correct position. I was taken to task for using the term “normal” yesterday – but when IndyCars have run in one direction for 105 years, I would say yesterday’s direction was not normal. Today’s is. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed yesterday’s Grand Prix of Indianapolis and hope that it continues to grow into a very successful event. But today begins what I grew up with. it is the reason I have come to this place for almost fifty years.