Thursday, June 7, 2007

Portland Tidbits

Otay, so now it’s really late… (Or REALLY EARLY!) And I haven’t had my 40 cups of Java today, nor do I have a fancy mahogany table. And it’s raining once again, blah-blah-blah…

Just a quick story about this weekend’s Portland Champ Car race. And suffice it to say, I won’t try reinventing the wheel, err writing what’s already been penned.

But I found this story in the Oregonian, as a prelude to the fast approaching Champ Car race pretty entertaining. The interview with Jimmy Vasser was enlightening, since I didn’t know he’d raced Midgets in Portland in the 1970’s. I’ve always been a fan of Vasser, who seemed like a quality act and always willing to help a team mate. After reading Alex Zanardi’s book I was even more impressed! As Zanardi claimed Vasser was more like a brother to him then team mate. And that’s coming from a two time CART Champion.

Its pretty funny hearing Vasser talk about his two young charges, especially Gomendey. Whom Robin Miller nicknamed “Christian Comedy.” Perhaps Miller was onto something as Vasser comments that when Gomendey gets excited he lapses into French over the radio…

Also of interest, was the fact that Champ Car plans to make its very first standing start at Portland this Sunday. Yet as Champ car doesn’t have traction control like Formula 1, it will be interesting to see if anyone stalls on the grid? .

This seems NOT too hard to do as I witnessed some Champ Car driver stall last year while trying to blaze a path out of pit lane during the Friday morning practice. This caused the session to be red flagged while the chagrined pilot had to wait for his pit crew to pull him back and re-fire the “Cossie lump!”

Of course I was not OVERLY HAPPY to hear that Champ Car has put Portland “On The Bubble,” as this is the final year of its current contract. Champ Car want’s Portland to increase its attendance… Here’s a suggestion Champ Car. Why don’t you get a FULL GRID of MORE than 17 cobbled together entries…

PS: Portland International Raceway. DON’T let Champ Car do ANY scheduling of race dates for you! Just ask China how that worked out!