Usually, I can come up with my own topics for my posts here – which might explain why some of my efforts here are a little on the lame side. But it’s sometimes tough to come up with new and different things to write about – especially in the offseason. That’s why I was very happy to get an e-mail last week from a regular reader named “Tom”, who had a very good suggestion for a post topic.
Yesterday, the news came that had been rumored for several days – AJ Foyt Enterprises confirmed their driver lineup for the 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series season. As expected, Carlos Muñoz will drive the storied No.14. Conor Daly will drive the car that used to carry the No.41, but will now be the No.4.
With a couple of distractions in the past week or so, I’ve failed to comment on what I consider to be one of the true feel-good stories of the Verizon IndyCar Series offseason. Please excuse my being just a little late to the party on this.
Be aware that for the first time (and probably the last time), I do make a quasi-political statement here. I really sat down to write about some of the latest developments in the IndyCar silly season, and only give a casual mention of the election. But once I started typing, I realized there was a lot I wanted to get off of my chest. If you’ve had enough of everyone’s opinion on the election, come back Monday. I promise I’ll have a more pertinent discussion about IndyCar, other than a couple of gratuitous mentions.
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.
We are now getting a clearer picture of what the Verizon IndyCar Series will look like for 2017. On Monday, two more drivers had their 2017 destinations confirmed. In a not-so-surprising move, Takuma Sato signed to drive the No.26 car for Andretti Autosport. I say that it was not a surprise because Michael Andretti had been struggling to find sponsorship for the car previously occupied by Carlos Muñoz. In the past, Muñoz had been bringing a large portion of the money required to run that car. After last season, his source (presumably his family) dried up.
There is a general school of thought that in today’s IndyCar world, that a team must have at least two cars in order to be successful. Statistically, that would appear to be correct. I mean the teams that are generally considered to be the top organizations in the paddock – Penske, Ganassi and Andretti – have four cars each.