Wednesday, May 29, 2024

IMS: Pacers mania

Apparently they’ll let anybody in on Car Day to wave the Flag! (The Tomaso Collection)

 

Even showing up to “promote” the Hometown Basketball team at Mother Speedway brought them any Good Mojo!

 

Photo C/O No Fenders Offical’ Photographer CARPETS’ 

IMS: “Larger than Life”

What’s that saying about everything’s bigger in Indianapolis? (The Tomaso Collection)

 

Even this outpouring of love for will Power couldn’t keep Him from crashing Sunday!

 

Photo C/O No Fenders Offical’ Photographer CARPETS’ 

IMS: “Rocket rick” to the Rescue!


Four-times Indianapolis 500 winner Rick Mears in Golf cart. (The Tomaso Collection)

 

Geez! Roger never told me that part of our Technical alliance with Foyt included Helping Dry out the track! But if Foyt’s gonna do it, I suppose I’d better join in…

 

Photo C/O No Fenders Offical’ Photographer CARPETS’ 

Sunday, May 26, 2024

IMS: The King’ waits Impatiently!

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Gawd Damn It! I left my umbreller’ in the Garage! And that Boy who drives for me is gonna get His Hairdo All Mussed-up in this Storm! (The Tomaso Collection)

 

“Reputedly” ‘Ol SuperTex’, aka Anthony Joseph Foyt Jr. is itchin’ to help in Track Drying operations later today! And says His Golf cart’s Faster than Tom Sneva’s…

 

Photo C/O No Fenders Offical’ Photographer CARPETS’ 

Another Zany Indy 500 Race Prediction

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Will Pato O’Ward be exchanging His latest Energy Drink for Milk on Sunday? (The Tomaso Collection)

 

As who will Mother Speedway choose this time? And will Mother Nature also get in upon “the Show?”

 

Blogging from the wilds of Nofendersville, where the Intrawoods’ connection is purdy G-Damn slow! Y’all really shouldn’t take too much below for granted, Hya! Especially due to the time delay…

 

Following Fast Friday’s conclusion, I initially came up with my Top-11 Contendahs’ for this year’s 108th running of the Indianapolis 500. As I’ll let Y’all figure out my “11” connection. And Nah, it doesn’t have anything to do with the Indy 11 Soccer team, Hya!

 

Thus alphabetically Team-wise: Andretti Global: Colton Herta and Marcus Ericsson; Arrow McLaren: Pato O’Ward and Alexander Rossi; Chip Ganassi Racing: Scott Dixon and Alex Palou; Meyer Shank Racing: Helio Castroneves; Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing: Takuma Sato, and Team Penske: Josef Newgarden, Scott McLaughlin and Will Power.

 

Whilst at the beginning of May, prior to the annual Indy GP, I made the Bold prediction with zero thought or scrutineering. That Alex Palou would be the winner of this year’s Indy 500…

 

Naturally after qualifying weekend, I’m not sure what to think about Cheep’s top two drivers, i.e.; Palou and Scott Dixon. Although both drivers are methodical at getting to the front. And if Chevy continues having it’s plenum Fires on race day, who knows? Although now that the Boost has been turned back down, this may no longer be an issue…

 

Naturally on the surface, the race initially seems likely to go one of two ways, albeit weather depending! As Team Penske has simply dominated thru Qualifying, enroute to locking out the Front row for only the second time in History. With 1988’s Indy 500 winner “Rocket rick” Mears starting from Pole in the “Yellow Submarine”. “Spin ‘n win” 1985 Indy 500 winner Danny Sullivan in the middle, and defending Indy 500 winner Big Al’ (Unser) on the outside of Row-1.

 

Thus Team Penske could be in for another repeat of History, if ScottyMac’, aka Scott McLaughlin can win His debutante Indianapolis 500 from Pole aboard the vaunted (Penzoil) Yellow Submarine. Although I still think odds are against the Kiwi’, who hasn’t won on an Oval yet.

 

Although I believe the last driver to win from Pole was also a Team Penske driver from France in 2019, when Symone’, nee Pageantry’, aka Simon Pagenaud was victorious.

 

As how Cool is it that Pagenaud will make His long awaited return to the cockpit when driving Gil de Feran’s 2003 Indianapolis 500 winning racecar as part of the Pre-race festivities…

 

The Odds are also stacked against Josef Newgarden going back-2-back, as No P2P Jokes here! As repeat winners have only occurred five times in the race’s history, with the last being Helio Castroneves in 2001-02.

 

And according to the Indianapolis Star’s 33 Things to know about the 500 article. Whilst 45 of the previous 107 winners have come from the Front row, only three of the last twelve have started there.

 

And that’s before we even get into the scuttlebutt suggesting the Penske trio work together to stay at the front of the pack until the end of the race.

 

Ok, I can come up with my own scuttlebutt. As what keeps Andretti global from sending Marcus Ericsson, whose had a brutal month as a sacrificial Rabbit at the head of the field, Oh Never Mind!

 

Leading me to think that Mother Speedway will lend Her Hand in picking a deserving winner as always. Although will it turn into being only Half distance due to weather? Since I cannot remember the last year with rain delays…

 

As right now I’m torn between two different drivers drinking milk on the victory podium. Torn between Alexander Rossi whom somebody called Luke Skywalker not being able to destroy the Team Penske Death Star – and has been mocking Penske’s Chirpiness All Qualie’ weekend! Along with Colton Herta whom just seems to be exuding quiet confidence.

 

Obviously as previously mentioned, Alex Palou is certainly a Contendah’, along with Scott Dixon. Although the Kiwi’s making His worst Indy 500 start ever in P21 and will have to come from way deep to pull off the upset. Hmm, another Dixon Master class Fuel saving run in the cards?

 

Other drivers I’d be happy seeing in the winner’s circle include thee Great Santini’, ergo Santino Ferrucci. As this would be a super popular victory since Ferrucci drives for A.J. foyt. Whom I still remember last year’s In-car radio replay saying Shall we go lead this Boys? Before rocketing to the lead, with thunderous, vocal approval from the Stands!

 

Whilst I’d also be happy with DJ WillyP’, aka Will Power winning His second Borg Warner trophy. As this would give the Aussie’ His 42nd win, tying Him for fourth All-time with Michael Andretti for career IndyCar wins.

 

Interestingly, I also learned via the Indianapolis Star that Power’s fifth Front row Start without winning the Pole ties Him with Harry Hartz and Wilbur Shaw.

 

Yet certainly you’re thinking what about my Numero Uno IndyCar driver Pato O’Ward, Eh? As I haven’t even mentioned Him yet. As this could be the break-thru year like always. But Pato’s already been complaining about His Chevy’ being slow, and He just seems to mercurial!

 

As I even pondered over qualifying weekend if He was feeling rattled over not being the No. 1 McLaren driver He’s used to? As I’ll begrudgingly admit that Kyle Larson has suitably impressed me both On and Offtrack. Although I still don’t think Larson will win. He’ll lead laps, but will get Outfoxed for the win…

 

Although somehow I missed another “Memo”. As I was totally unaware that Larson’s deal with McLaren is a two year contract for racing at Mother Speedway, i.e.; 2024-25.

 

Other outside chances are Felix-the-Cat’, aka Felix Rosenqvist who was the quickest Honda runner. Yet unfortunately the Swede’ has a record of qualifying better than finishing. While obviously the spotlight will be upon His elder teammate Hulio’. But Castroneves won’t win again!

 

And ditto for Fast Eddie’, nee Ed Carpenter who seems His best days are behind Him. Along with The Dude! Aka Ryan Hunter-Reay.

 

Otay, Y’all are probably sayin’ Quit stalling and tell us your prediction, Eh?

 

Yes, I feel that Will Power’s laser focused and has to be a serious threat. While Alexander Rossi seems to have a massive Chip upon His shoulder, not to mention being in a contract year.

 

But I’ll stick with my Gut feeling and go for the not so obvious pick and select Colton Herta as this year’s winner! As Herta just seems to be exuding confidence along with sounding “loose” and not overtly serious. Kind of making me think of The Gasman, aka Tom Sneva…

 

But if it becomes a rain shortened race, then All “bets” are Off! And I’ll predict that Dixon wins His second Indianapolis 500.

 

As Y’all can compare ‘n contrast this year’s predictions vs. last year’s riveting No Fenders post below…

 

http://www.nofenders.net/2023/05/indy-500-wholl-win-this-years-race.html 

Friday, May 24, 2024

INDY 500: Searchin’ Far and Wide

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Now if I could only find me a decent Tenderloin sandwich to go with my Chips, and something to Drink! (The Tomaso Collection)

 

As the yearly Hunt for the perfect, Classic Jumbo Tenderloin Rolls On…

 

Every May, the Media likes to Salt ‘N Pepper us with stories of People’s yearly Indianapolis 500 traditions, since after all it’s the Gurr-Reatest’ Something Ruther…

 

And although I can No longer recall if I’ve ever Had one? Since I only remember paying $9.00 for a Steak Sandwich during the 2006 USGP Formula 1 race instead, but I digress…

 

Thus for over a Decade Now, I’ve lived vicariously thru the written and spoken word  of one such person with the tradition of Hunting for the elusive, perfect Classic Jumbo Tenderloin Sandwich at Mother Speedway every May! For which this ‘lil Ditty’s in regards to and Good Hunting!

 

Testing Testing, 1-2, 1-2, Is this Thingy’ On?

 

“The Searcher”

I looked Under Stand J

I looked Behind the Museum

I Asked around the Pagoda

But They couldn’t Help Me either

 

They Call Me The Searcher

I’ve been Searchin’ Far and Wide

I Won’t Get to Taste what I Came For

Until I’m Trackside

 

I Asked Doug Boles

I Asked Mark Miles

I Asked Jay Frye

But He Couldn’t  Help Me either

 

They Call Me The Searcher

I’ve been Searchin’ Far and Wide

I Won’t Get to Taste what I Came For

Until I’m Trackside

 

People ten to Scoff at Me

They Think I’m Crazy lookin’ for the perfect Tenderloin

Always interrupting Me to Say Hi George

When I’m putting Mustard on my Bun

 

Finding A Classic Tenderloin

I’ve been Searchin’ for Miles

 

Because I’m The Searcher

And I want A Real Tenderloin

 

And I Won’t Get to Get What I’m After

Until I’m trackside

 

I’ve learned Not to Stop at the First concession Stand

But Yeah look at My Face, Ain’t that A Smile

 

I’m Happy when I’ve found My Classic Tenderloin

Cause I’ve Got Values and I Won’t be Denied

 

I’m lookin’ for Mine

You’re lookin’ for Yours

We’re Both lookin’ together, But we don’t Know where to Turn!

 

They Call Me The Searcher

I’ve been Searchin’ Far and Wide

I Won’t Get to Taste what I Came For

Even if they’re now Twelve Dollars and 50 cents Trackside!

 

This Lyrical Prose was Shamelessly inspired by The Who’s The Seeker song, which Y’all can listen to in the Youtube link below…

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAbzlj3nf4E

 

(Originally written by Tomaso on May 15, 2022. Updated on May 16, 2024) 

Thursday, May 23, 2024

Ganassi Stacks the Indy 500 Rookies Deck

But which of these three will come out on top?

 

Not only does thee Cheepster’, nee Chip Ganassi have the most entries at Mother Speedway with five. But also has the most IndyCar rookies on His squad.…

 

Marcus Armstrong

#11 Chip Ganassi Racing

Engine: Honda

Country: New Zealand

DOB: 7/29/00, Age: 23

IndyCar Starts: 16

2023 IndyCar Rookie Of the Year

 

After winning Karting titles in His native New Zealand, Marcus made the jump up to single seaters in 2014. Armstrong steadily advanced and in 2017, driving for the Prema Powerteam had His breakout year. Winning the Italian Formula 4 Championship and finishing runner-up in the ADAC F4 Championship to Juri Vips. Armstrong also became a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy that year.

 

Next Armstrong graduated to the FIA European Formula 3 Championship, where His teammates were Robert Shwartzman and future Formula 1 driver Guanyu Zhou, finishing fifth overall. Before finishing runner-up in the 2019 FIA F3 Championship.

 

Marcus contested three seasons of FIA Formula 2, scoring a total of four wins before moving to Indy Cars. Where He contested the Twisties’ Only portion of the 2023 IndyCar calendar driving for Chip Ganassi Racing, with Takuma Sato driving All of the Ovals.

 

Marcus scored five Top-10 finishes with a best result of seventh at Toronto enroute to winning Rookie Of the Year (ROY) Honors, before being inked to a Full season campaign this year for Ganassi. Having just scored His first IndyCar Top-5 finish in the Indy GP. Nipping at team leader Scott Dixon’s heals at race’s end. Armstrong now prepares to race in His first ever Oval event, and rolls off 16th, the second highest Ganassi starter…

 

Linus Lundqvist

#8 Chip Ganassi Racing

Engine: Honda

Country: Sweden

DOB: 3/26/99, Age: 25

IndyCar Starts: 7

2022 Indy NXT Champion

 

After considerable success Karting, Linus Lundqvist made His single seater debut in 2015, before gravitating to Europe where He spent a few seasons driving for Double R Racing. A race team owned by some Cool Cat known as The Iceman’, aka Kimi Raikkonen and Steve Robertson, Kimi’s manager. As Robertson is one of only three Indy Lights Champions to have never raced in IndyCar…

 

Linus won the 2018 British BRDC F3 title before moving Across thoust Bloody Puddle’ to contest the 2020 (Formula Regional) FR Americas Championship, which He totally dominated. Winning the title, scoring victory in 16 of 18 races!

 

After a positive rookie Indy Lights campaign, claiming three wins. Linus claimed the title the following year driving for HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing. Yet despite His title, Lundqvist sat sidelined due to Penske Entertainment slashing His championship Advancement Prize…

 

Lundqvist’s IndyCar break came late in 2023. Contrary to popular belief, Linus made His IndyCar debut on Nashville’s City streets as Simon Pagenaud’s substitute at Meyer Shank Racing, (MSR) where He qualified 11th. Ultimately running three races for MSR, i.e.; Nashville, Indy GP and Gateway. Before eventual 2024 MSR replacement Tom Blomqvist ran the season’s final two events…

 

Yet Linus suitably impressed during His three races and was signed to a multi-year contract with Chip Ganassi Racing for 2024. Where the Swede’ scored His first IndyCar podium in His sixth race at Barber Motorsports Park. Starting P19 and finishing third, vaulting Him up to eighth in the points standings.

 

Yet the next time out at Mother Speedway’s permanent road course during the Indy GP. Lundqvist ran out of fuel entering the Pits, taking forever to restart His engine! And painfully finished P24 after flirting with another Top-10 finish! And dropped to 13th in the points standings…

 

Then Linus made the “smallest” of mistakes during Thursday’s practice at IMS, clipping the Turn-2 curb which sent the No. 8 into a spin. First impacting the rear end and then snapping round, hitting the car’s right side in a long slide before coming to a halt! As you never want to be the first driver to crash during the Month of May. But obviously, Lundqvist will bounce back since He’s drives for one of the preeminent IndyCar teams. Dually qualifying P27 for His debutante Indy 500.

 

Kyffin Simpson

#4 Chip Ganassi Racing

Engine: Honda

Country: Cayman Islands/USA

DOB: 10/9/04, Age: 19

IndyCar Starts: 4

 

While I’ve got very little to say about Kyffin Simpson, whose Indy Lights/NXT results really don’t say much. Nonetheless, you’d have to admit that Kyffin’s rise thru the ranks to becoming an IndyCar driver was quite rapid.

 

Simpson only made His single seater debut four years ago, when contesting the U.S. Formula 4 Championship for Velocity Racing Development. Along with contesting His maiden FR Americas season driving for HMD Motorsports.

 

For 2021, Kyffin won the FR Americas title driving for TJ Speed Motorsports whilst notching seven wins. Before contesting that year’s Indy Pro 2000 Championship for Juncos Hollinger Racing, finishing eighth overall.

 

For 2022, Simpson graduated to Indy Lights with TJ Speed Motorsports, before jumping to HMD Motorsports for the latter half of the season. As Kyffin would spend two seasons in the IndyCar training ground with a best finish of ninth overall in 2022. The same year He was inked to a multi-ear IndyCar development role with Chip Ganassi Racing.

 

Simpson has also spent considerable time racing in Sports Cars, most notably winning the 2023 European Le Mans Series (ELMS) LMP2 Class for Algarve Pro Racing in 2023. Along with contesting the Rolex 24 and other major Sports Car races…

 

Kyffin made His IndyCar debut this year at Saint Petersburg, where He finished a very respectable 12th. Followed by P19 at Long Beach and 14th at Alabama. And then P15 in the Indy GP, netting Kyffin 18th overall in the points standings.

 

And who would have predicted that Kyffin would qualify three places ahead of Scott Dixon in His maiden Indianapolis 500? As Simpson will roll off 18th…