Friday, March 27, 2009

Sweet Home Alabama

She’s opening the door.
She’s coming out!
She’s wearing a purple track suit with pink and red piping.
Oh Danicker, what are you gonna do in those shoes!
She’s grabbing a burrito.
And now she’s heading back inside...

And there certainly seems to be a fair bit of banter over the just completed test sessions held at Barber Motorsports Park, as Jeff over at My Name is IRL has an interesting take upon the whole Barber Motorsports Park media-LUV-fest.

A trip to the Barber

And DON’T get me wrong, as I’m all in favour of the Indy Racing League coming to Portland instead... Although it’s true that the attendance took a dive in the final year; I’m getting a bit tired of hearing the same excuse in regards to the poor attendance it had in the waning years of the series formerly known as the Champ Car World Series being Portland’s fault...

As I’ve said before and I’ll say it again! The attendance went down the drain because we were treated like second class citizens, being given a watered down product of 15 racecars... Oh wait I think two more are coming around the bend... And what’s the Support Series this year? Bicycles again? OH WOW! Don’t those Mazda Miata’s look fast? They sure sound quick?

Not to mention some terribly fowl weather as I can still recall my teeth chattering from sitting all day on some shiny COOLLLDDDD metal grandstands in my Kmart raingear! And what’s that? They’ve scheduled the race on the same weekend as the 100th Anniversary Rose Festival parade in downtown Portland? Hmm? Me thinks that the Pacific Northwest fans are too astute and tired of The Split, but I digress.

On the flip side of Barber having indeed been developed for “Scooter” racing, they do hold a Grand Am (ACK!_ race there... NO, I’ll skip the which series is better Grand Am or American Le Mans Parrot-ity. As apparently the track is currently lacking in passing zones, which was the reason the Festival Curves were built in Portland... Uhm? Which hosted CART & Champ Car events there for nearly 25yrs. What’s that? You say it’s already built and it even has a light rail stop directly across from the track alongside the freeway, with direct access to Downtown Portland.

Yet, you’ve gotta give Atlanta its due, as they pulled out all of the stops, including the red carpet for Tony George and the Mayor has even proclaimed an Indy Car Day, along with presenting TG a key to the city for which it was humorsly explained he may need to get outta jail if they don’t get a race soon...

And HELL! They even sent real “LIVE” reporters to cover the testing action, with the Birmingham News having a minimum of three stories per day in their cities’ local paper.

Indy Car “Rookie” Robert Doornbos compared the track to Belgium’s Spa-Francorchamps, which is high praise indeed, as this has been a Formula 1 piloto’s favourite racing circuit for decades, with the legendary corner Eau Rouge having been the most daunting for many years... Until now the racecar’s can simply go flat thru, although it’ll be interesting to see how the new cars maneuver there this year, eh?

Anyways, I think its probably a good sign that we’re all lobbying for more Indy Car races and new venues, even if I’m left wondering if the Barber shuffle has something to do with being in RASSCAR’s backyard? As I’m guessing this sorta press is much better then the farcical rules bungling demonstrated by the FIA.

And Will of Is it May yet? Says it’s a great place... So he may be interested to hear that Bad Bobby D. was asking Scott Dixon if he could smell the barbeques on the back stretch? I tell yuh Graham; you’d better stock up on your Big Macs or is he a Quarter Pounder type ‘O guy?