Rocking The IndyCar Vote

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America heads to the polls tomorrow – or do they? With early voting, absentee voting and voting by mail; does anyone still go to the polls and actually fight the insanity of election day? For years, I resisted early voting. I didn’t believe in it. It seemed un-American. That shouldn’t come as a surprise to many, given my reluctance to change. It seemed to be a rite of passage. For one thing, before Susan and I got married and I lived in another part of town – my polling place was a small church in a nice area just up my street. It was never very crowded and the volunteer workers were always friendly. The church always had a bake sale for any elections, so I walked out with not only the obligatory “I Voted” sticker on my shirt – but I usually had a chess pie in my hands.

But for the past few years, I’ve caved – mainly because Susan and I now live in another part of town. Our voting precinct is about three miles away in a community center. There are no pies, but there are a lot of people in a huge rush that don’t seem very friendly. After the mass of humanity I endured at the new polling place in November of 2012, I decided that maybe early voting was American enough after all. I voted two weeks ago and from the time I got out of my car until I got back into it was probably no more than three minutes.

But after that rambling litany about pies and voting, you probably think I’ve written about how you should all exercise your right to vote. While you should, that’s not exactly today’s topic.

While I am writing about how you should vote, it is not concerning tomorrow’s election. It’s about IndyCar driver James Hinchcliffe and the final two episodes of Dancing With The Stars. Hinch has made it into the semi-finals. In fact, he got a perfect score last week with a substitute dancing partner. His normal partner, Sharna Burgess, injured her knee a couple of weeks ago and has been advised by her doctors to stay off of it. She heeded their advice last week and she remains questionable for the final two episodes. It didn’t matter. Hinchcliffe is that good and has captured the eyes of the judges.

He has also created a whole slew of James Hinchcliffe fans. Our hope is that they will eventually become fans of the Verizon IndyCar Series. Helio Castroneves did actually move the needle when he won in 2007. I know for a fact that there are now IndyCar fans who started following the series because they liked Helio so much on the show.

Quite honestly, that’s pretty much why I’m watching it. I’ve always been a fan of Helio and James Hinchcliffe, but I would probably watch and support any IndyCar driver that was a contestant. It’s not that I enjoy watching drivers dance, but I feel an obligation to support anything that might help grow awareness of the series.

What I like about watching Hinch on the show is that he is building a following without his snarky personality. He has been humble and that in itself is appealing. If the audience were to se what a keen sense of humor he has – they’d like him even more.

I’ve missed a lot of Monday Night Football this year because I’ve given up two hours each Monday night to watch a lot of ballroom dancing. It made me cringe to even type that last sentence.

There are two more Monday nights to go before it all ends. The NFL matchups that I’ll be missing are Buffalo at Seattle tonight and the Bengals at the Giants next week. Even if you don’t watch Dancing With The Stars for the next two weeks, I’ll ask you to please vote tonight and tomorrow night as many times as allowed. They will tell you on the phone how many, but tonight you will probably be allowed six votes per phone. You can vote at 1-800-868-3405, which is the number dedicated for Hinch.

Susan and I each vote the maximum times per cell phone, then our land line (yes, we still have one of those) and then we each vote online. We are doing our part, because Hinch is doing his part by taking this seriously and doing a great job and usually scoring the highest core each week, or at least near the top.

So, I’m asking you to vote for James Hinchcliffe tonight and next Monday night for the finals – even if you don’t watch. And by the way, please get out and vote tomorrow, as well.

George Phillips

Please Note: With the election results rolling in tomorrow night, I will probably not have a chance to write or will be very distracted. Therefore, there will be no post here on Wednesday Nov 9. I will return here Friday when hopefully everyone has calmed down from whichever way things turn out tomorrow. By then, we’ll all be ready to focus on racing. – GP

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9 Responses to “Rocking The IndyCar Vote”

  1. I will indeed be calling in a vote for “Happy Feet Hinchcliffe” tonight. I will also watch them rather than football.

    Yesterday, while tiring of watching our Green Bay Packers pathetic dink and dunk offense turn into stink and stunk, I switched to the Nascar rain delay coverage. Lo and behold, they did a lengthy segment about Texan A.J. Foyt that included coverage of both his stock car and IndyCar exploits. That was a treat. Mr. Foyt could wheel a car.

  2. I cannot vote in either of those elections because of neither being a US citizen nor living in the US. Thus, it’s only fair that I cannot.

    However, I do not understand why, living in Germany, I cannot buy in the US version of the iTunes store if you don’t have a stateside billing adress on your credit card. That way, I have already had to miss out on several very interesting albums of music because these were not released to international iTunes customers. How odd.

  3. GO Hinch! However, I won’t be watching because I will be watching football or Perry Mason.

  4. I will admit to taping the show and watching football. Though I do vote before the end of DWTS. I hadn’t realized I could stuff the ballot box and vote more than once from both of my phones. Hmmm. I have two left feet, so dancing is not my thing. However, James has been amazing in his style and accuracy in each dance.

    Hinch is snarky? Nor in my interactions with him over the years. He has gone out of his way to be kind and friendly (and very funny) to me and my friends. Always accommodating.

  5. I was explaining to my wife last night the similarities between Hinch and Helio and why I thought it was fate that Hinch wins.

    Both drivers came into the series with mid-pack teams and had decent showings. Both were thrust into good rides by the death, in the final race of the season, of the drivers who were suppost to get those rides. Both made the most of their opportunity despite the sadness involved. It’s destiny, Hinch has to win!

  6. Anyone else in Pacific or Mountain timezone?? Hinch needs our help accorting to the DWTS website:

    It means fan voting for Hinchcliffe this week is critical for the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports driver to not be the next celebrity eliminated on the Nov. 14 broadcast. Online voting remains open until 8 p.m. ET today at abc.com and the “Dancing with the Stars” Facebook page.

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