Saturday, June 13, 2009

Surviving Indy (Lap 101-150)


Balloon Release (Dave O'Brien photo)

Sun, 5/24 (Con’t)
CHECKERS OR WRECKERS...

Have pestered Danny all morning about being outside for all of the Pre-Race Hoopla and notice the melody of multiple Marching Bands, while standing outside prior to the beginning of the festiva, as we continue to countdown to Drivers introductions before going back inside where JMV, a.k.a. John Michael Vincent; NOT to be cornfused with Jan Michael Vincent of WNDE - AM1260 (Mon-Fri; Noon-4PM ET) was doing a special live broadcast of his show “The Drive” from inside the Media center and was situated directly behind and three seats to the right of my assigned chair and was talking quite loudly... And as he began his interview with 2009 IMS Celebrity Pace Car Driver Josh Duhamel, there were suddenly video cameras next to me along with multiple flashes from Photographers...

As the interview ended, I noticed Crash Gladys tracking down Josh alongside the floor to ceiling windows, as I assume she did an interview for Speed Freaks. Stick around folks JMV blares out, as we’ll be joined by Robin Miller and Jimmy Neighbors shortly...

“Attention in the Media center. Thomas Kinkade, the artist of this year’s INDY 500 program will be available for interviews for a few minutes.”


Danny & I went to lunch in the Cafeteria where various comments were made about the Turkey’s tenderness..; “Tastes like Chicken!” As the two Gentlemen sitting across from me informed me when I told them the only East Coast Hockey team near their city of St. Louis that I could think (Think Pink!) of was the (Chicago) Blackhawk’s which I knew was wrong; they said those are fighting words, Son!

Walking back upstairs a small throng of people headed towards us as Jeffrey said; you just missed Jimmy Neighbors right behind us... As the Media center was now completely cleared out. But I did manage to catch the majority of JMV’s interview with Miller, John Oreovicz (ESPN) and Chris Hagen of FOX59’s Indy Car Nation.

Oreovich:
“Luczo Dragon Racing’s Jay Penske is a Hip, Cool, Californian version of Roger Penske and all of the Stars like Shaq wanna be seen with him until they get the bill the month later and say this is how much it costs to go racing?”

And now its almost time for Driver introductions kiddies, as I made my way outside to get situated as there was already a small crowd along the fourth floors railing towards the front straightaway... And everybody’s talking, hooting ‘N hollering as the crowd is massive and there’s a slight buzz of anticipation in the air... And now IT’S SHOWTIME!

Starting 33rd, Alex Tagliani, as there’s a modest amount of applause as the PA announcer slowly works his way forward up the grid... And HOLY SHIT!!! The crowd erupts with electrified intensity as Princess Danicker’s name is announced... With only Dancin’ FOOL Hulio receiving a louder ovation as one spectator turns around to tell me that;

“They’re cheering because he beat the IRS!”

While I guess that Dario Franchitti got the third loudest cheer from the massive audience opposite us...

Then its time for the singing, with three singers doing traditional pieces, including Mrs. Brady, a.k.a. Florence Henderson doing her usual Gospely, harmonically challenged tune before the piece de la resistance... Gomer Pyle singing Back Home Again in Indiana, which I’d wanted to hear live, but strangely it seemed way shorter then when I listen to it on the Telescreen! Perhaps because the crowd drones out the wind-up of the song’s beginning? And where’s the Balloons... Oh CRAP! Cannot see a Bloody thing because the Media center’s roof is in the way (although the shade it provides is greatly appreciated...) and thus I was unable to see the AWESOME fly over by vintage World War II Bombers... Which were simply electrifying as the massive piston powered air cooled radial engines rumbled directly overhead, passing the Pagoda at the very moment the National Anthem finished! As I couldn’t even hear Mrs. Hulman George say those famous words, with the crowd erupting and 33 Honda Lumps suddenly coming to life...



And the whirring of the overhead camera on a cable mounted above the length of Pit lane was only audible during the 21 gun salute as three volleys of seven shots rang out... Before the camera which annoyingly entered my field of vision the rest of the afternoon made me think of a giant black/grey Teradackle scooting by on a wire while its whirring motor could no longer be heard over the roar of engines and crowd...

As the eleven rows of three cars roll away! And like an old fashioned steam Locomotive the cars continue to pick up speed before there’s a massive crowd eruption as the Green flag’s waived... But I cannot hear a single BLOODY thing over the PA System as suddenly the cars slow down and the people around me say; Caution-Caution-Caution...

Well at least they managed to squeeze in two laps as apparently Mario “The High Line ISN’T the Right Line” Moraes tangles with Marky-Mark (Marco) Andretti... As later I’d be informed that the first lap had been waived off, so a Yellow flag before the conclusion of Lap 1 summed up the whole race to Mwah, as I went into hysterics over the RASSCAR style blunder... As the following day AM1070’s THE FAN’s Krabitz would tell the following joke:

“What do you get when you put Mario, Michael and Marco (Andretti) in a basement? A WHINE Cellar...” (Hee-Hee-Hee... Hey I’m just repeating it!)

But back to the race as we’re Green again and I decide that the massive blur of 33 Indy Car projectiles in close lock-step sound like a high speed Freight Train passing by; Vump- Vump- Vump- Vump- Vump- Vump- Vump- Vump- Vump... Vump- Vump- Vump! Albeit of a higher frequency pitch before the Freight Train begins to get strung out... And I find it hilarious how everybody gets up and runs over to the windows inside the Media center anytime there’s a Pit Stop or Caution... As Crikeys! Graham Rahal has crashed again, SHEISA! In what Robin Miller would later describe as a Lucky Milka! Instead of a Lucky Dog pass where you get your lap back ala RASSCAR... The IRL sticks you behind Milka for two laps and sees if you can keep from crashing... Oh Robin, you’re such a Heathen... And although the Media center is very pleasurable temperature wise; yet as Meesh sez: it’s become Morgue-like as its totally silent, except for the tapping of keyboards only overcrowded by the blaringly loud live ABC feed on all of the TV’s and the air conditioning... But Hey! At least there’s NO COMMERCIALS!!! And hence I’ve been deprived of the plethora ‘O Princess “Whose your Daddy?” Danicker adverts as I simply haven’t watched my race tape yet...

And then like a claxon bell a voice rings out over the room’s loudspeakers... Graham Rahal has been checked-out, released and cleared to drive.

OH SHEISA! Davey Hamilton’s just slid up the track into the marbles and hit the wall...

TK (Tony Kanaan) has a massive crash as everybody says OOH! As they watch Hulio’s in-car replay, showing sparks trailing before impact with the Safer Barrier at 190mph... They play Danica’s radio transmission; “I hope he’s Ok?” To which Mikey (M. Andretti) calmly replies; “Yeah, he’s alright, Pit-Pit-Pit.”

Attention: Davey Hamilton’s been released and cleared to drive. And then I break into silent laughter when the same monotone voice informs us that Tony Kanaan has been released and cleared to drive... As is it just me? Uhm, excuse me Mister Announcer-man, while I’m happy that TK’s been cleared to drive... I DON’T think his car’s going anywhere...

And then finally, I’d had enough of being inside, trying to see my chicken scratching and told Danny I was going back outside for the duration of the event and would meet Dave & Rob after the victory lane celebrations... While Jeff came out and joined me briefly... Having asked me earlier if I could disconcert the sickly sweet smell of Popcorn, which was his description of the cars Ethanol... But I couldn’t seem to pick up this scent over the proliferation of cigar and cigarette smoke.

AH FUCK! HOLY SHEISA!!! The WRONG three Drivers finished on the Podium... Podium? WE DON’T NEED NO STINKIN’ PODIUMS!!! Do we Eddie “The Goose” Gossage, eh? As the crowd simply erupted over Hulio climbing the fence... As I particularly enjoyed Jimmy vasser’s outtake on the whole Hulio-mania hysteria, saying” Helio’s my favourite ACTOR!

I mean C’mon, why couldn’t it have been Will Power, Townsend Bell, Paul Tracy, Tomas Scheckter, TAG, Justin Wilson or Graham Rahal instead? As now I’ve gotta listen forever to Hulio being referred to as a Three Time INDY 500 Winner... SHEISA!!!

And it was amazing to see how many people were now making a mass exitous, as the Gordon Pipers began playing their victory song prior to the celebrations before the entire Speedway was filled with the booming sounds of the three precocious whiners, Err winners interviews over the PA system... Oh Danicker, put a sock in it will yuh!

And then Dave helped me navigate our way towards the exit, having left Rob at the Hall of Fame Museum in order to do a bit of last minute shopping... And yet although packed, seemingly the large population of pedestrians seemed to be flowing fairly well as we were outside of the Speedway grounds in a matter of minutes... Walking on 16th Street before the “Coppers” told us to get on the sidewalk as they’d opened up all four lanes to traffic, as the floodgates seemed to open for cars, trucks, vans, busses, etc while waiting for the Police to let us cross the intersection. Yet Dave’s shop O’Brien Carpets is just a half mile away from the Speedway and we were quickly there, before Dave whisked us away to his house for a most excellante barbeque dinner upon Rob’s arrival, as we’d stay up until 12:15AM discussing the race, albeit overshadowed once again by Rob an my never ending Formula 1 conversation...

To continue reading, see; Surviving Indy L151-200

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