Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Don’t forget ‘bout Petit LeMans

Although I’m not sure where I’ll be this Saturday... And most likely will miss it... Especially since I’m far more interested in seeing Will Power WIN the 2010 ICS title... Don’t forget that the American Le Mans Series will also be hosting it’s Season Finale at Road Atlanta with it’s fabulous Petit LeMans race, which Y’all can catch all 10hrs of on SPEED. As the race is scheduled to begin on Saturday morning at 8AM ET; then after gorging on all Ten hours you can flip over to Versus “Just-in-Time” to catch the start of the Homestead Finale...

2010 Petit LeMans Spotter Guide


Look for another Donnybrook between the TDi Behemoths Audi v Peugeot, although the car that seems to be garnering the most press is Porsche’s revolutionary 911-Hybrid.

Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid Shines in the Wet

Homestead 2010: Will Power to take ICS Title?


Whale it’s almost time again to play for all of the marbles... As I’m posting this a bit early since I’m not sure where I’ll be watching the race from? As I’ll definitely set the trusty ‘Ol School VCR with extra time tacked onto the end of the race!

Homestead(Date/PoleWinner/Team)
10/10/09 D. Franchitti D. Franchitti TCGR
3/29/08 S. Dixon S. Dixon TCGR
3/24/07 D. Wheldon D. Wheldon TCGR
3/26/06 S. Hornish Jr. D. Wheldon TCGR
3/06/05 T. Scheckter D. Wheldon AGR
2/29/04 B. Rice S. Hornish Jr. Penske

(Year/Winner/Team)
2003 S. Dixon TCGR
2002 S. Hornish Jr. Panther
2001 S. Hornish Jr. Panther

Just a wee bit ‘O trivial research... As it appears that Homestead is potentially a Target Chip Ganassi Racing affair, eh? As The Cheepster’s “Manly Men” have ruled the roost by winning there the last 4yrs in-a-row, along with capturing four of the past six events.

Yet, I seem to recall that Penske’s Ryan “Disco Fever” Briscoe dominated the event last year... Even leading the MOST laps of the race in a fierce Mano e Mano duel for the chequered flag with Scott Dixon whilst Dario “REO Speedwagon” took the (HULIO “N) Danica approach and utilized a fuel sipping conservation mode to win the race and the IndyCar title after Briscoe threw away a sure victory and 25 points lead at the Motegi race preceding the finale...

Homestead ’09: The Motegi edition
And I wasn’t gonna scour le internetz, BUTT! I did it for shear humour and discovered the statistics noted above.

But I’m putting my money on No. 12! As its gotta be a Penske year after all of the nonstop victory dances ‘Ol Cheep’s been doin’ all season long, eh? As in the Daytona 500, Indy 500 and Brickyard 400... Who LUV’s Yuhs Baby? So GO! WILL POWER! You deserve it... As after all, who’s WON the MOST races & Poles this year – Huh!

That’s right! Say it loud together...
WILL POWER!
Versus kickoff time is listed as 6PM New York/Indy (ET) Which means I don’t know when the Green flag will actually be thrown, but I’ll hazard to guess it’ll be somewhere ‘round 7PM ET? SHEISA!

GO WILL POWER!

DRR, Conquest get New Drivers for Homestead

MOTO GP: 2010 Indianapolis Race Outing – Part 2

Originally, I found it funny that I toted a Dunlop Tyres poster bag + Dunlop Motorcycle racing poster around Indy and all the way home via two Airports and Aeroplanes. Even managing to get it all the way back to Seattle uncrushed! (As I was carrying it sans poster tube & afraid to put in those Double STUFFED Overhead Stowage Bins!) Whilst thinking the whole time, Uh? Isn’t Bridgestone the Sole tyre supplier in MOTO GP? To which I’ve since discovered that both the Moto2 & 125cc classes run on Dunlop “Control” tyres, as there were so many details missed while navigating the Brickyard grounds, but I digress...


(MOTO GP: Sunday’s Flying start – Photo by CARPETS)
Dave “CARPETS” O’Brien:
“Here is pic of the big bikes at the start going by us. It's not your eyes. They are going by so fast it's a blu one to me too.”
Saturday, August 28th
We skipped the 125cc session, while I enjoyed listening to Ralph Sheheen and Greg White (both of SPEED Motorcycling programs) doing the morning Practice session on the IMS PA system, especially enjoying White’s insights, as I really enjoy hearing voices I recognize over the loudspeakers. While Saturday afternoon and Raceday featured Toby Moody and Kevin “Voice of the Supersonics,” Err Dave Calabro, with Toby getting the Lion’s share of announcing time...

And I still swear the ‘Duc’s (Ducati’s) have their own unique soundtrack, i.e.; exhaust note, as the Top lap times are being thrown around by the various competitors’... As I’m rootin’ for “Captain kOOL!” (Ben Spies) And I’m doin’ some fist pumpin’ whilst trying NOT to get too GEEKED! As Ben’s on Pole with 10mins remaining! Telling Danny that’s way too much time... But FUCKING EH – RAY! SPIES DOES IT! SWEET! As that’s so FREAKIN’ COOL to have been in attendance for Ben Spies’s maiden MOTO GP Pole Position... As I’ll be even more SHOCKED if he could actually pull off an unexpected ‘W” tomorrow... As I scribbled the following: Spies P1, Lorenzo 2nd, N. Hayden 3rd, Stoner P5(?) and Rossi 7th?

Saturday ‘Qualie Times
(Partial MOTO GP Qualifying results)
Pole: Ben Spies, USA; Tech 3 Yamaha: 1:40.105
2. George Lorenzo, Spain; Fiat-Yamaha (-0.220 seconds)
3. Nicky Hayden, USA; Ducati Corse
4. Andrea Dovizioso, Italy; Repsol Honda
5. Dani Pedrosa, Spain; Repsol Honda
6. Casey Stoner, Australia; Ducati Corse
7. Valentino Rossie, Italy; Fiat-Yamaha
8. Marco Simoncelli, Italy; San Carlo Honda
9. Colin Edwards, USA; Tech 3 Yamaha (1:41.232; -1.127 seconds)

Next we watched the first 15 minutes (approx.) of the Moto2 bikes before leaving; upon returning home (as previously noted) I’ve discovered that our ‘3-Yanks: Jason Di Salvo was 27th, Roger Lee Hayden 29th and Kenny Noyes 30th in Qualifying.

Later Dave drove me Downtown Saturday evening to see what was going on? As we cruised past LucasDome, which had some sorta High School Football game in progress while the Circle (Monument Circle/Circle Drive?) was completely blocked off for the ongoing Motorcycles on Meridian festivities... As there seemed to be lots of “Thumpers” ‘Out “N Aboot, nee Harleys.

Next we drove down Gasoline Alley, pulling into the Sarah Fisher Racing (SFR) building’s parking lot, but alas, they’re all in Chicago; DRAT!

Then we made a Pitstop at FaJolie’s(?) Pizzeria... Chicagoland requires pizza, right? As the manager was quite happy to shoot the breeze with us, being an ‘Ol Timer “Straightliner,” nee Drag Racer and was all excited ‘bout the upcoming MAC Tools National. He was from SoCal and originally worked for In ‘N Out Burgers; telling us the story of how they got into Drag Racing and now the daughter of the Owners was having a blast driving in B/G-GAS? And they’re here even though they’re a West coast only operation sponsoring Melanie Troxel’s “Flopper, (Top Fuel Funnycar) albeit W/O sponsor decals.

He continued by saying: I’d haveda liked to go check out the MOTO GP bikes, but I’m taking 6-days off for the ‘Nat’s which my wife likes to call the HumidNational’s; as we’ve gotta ton ‘O family coming in for it. I’ve been into Dragsters for 17yrs and my son’s been into it for nine. He drives and just did a 306 testing at ORP; said it really makes a difference testing at a good track and ran a high of 324mph!

And Speakin ‘bout Humidity... Little did I know just how DAMN HOT ‘N MUGGY it’d be at Indy on Raceday, as I swear I heard Ralph sheheen state it was 95f degrees with a track surface temperature of 133. Can you say H-O-T!

We got back to Carpets Manor “Just-in-Time” for the big Indy Car race, returning at 7:54PM – which was perfect! Since we missed all of the Versus Preamble! Then somehow I managed to become hypnotized by all of ‘Dat round ‘N round action and fell asleep mid-race...

(MOTO GP Turn 1 – Sunday – Photo by CARPETS)

Sunday, August 29th
We arrive Just-in-Time for the Moto2 race, arriving at the tail-end of the 125cc race, totally unaware of the day’s earlier tragedy that struck 13yr old Peter Lenz in the preceding Support Event, see: Motorcycle Incidents strike Indianapolis, as apparently his Family requested that his fatality not be disclosed until after the MOTO GP race finished...

And the Spills ‘N Thrills continued as the Moto2’s 40-rider field saw six riders go down on lap-1, bringing out a Red flag, which lasted for nearly 40mins; CRIKEYS! But it was very cool seeing a massive 40 ‘Scooters roll-off for the formation lap and then take the start (twice) buzzing their way down into Turn 1... Although I had NO idea who was who or how our Yankee Wildcard riders prevailed; but did witness a super nice Slipstreaming pass for the lead into turn 1 by the eventual winner. While I’ve now looked up the race results and learned that Toni Elias took the victory over Julian Simon, with Scott Redding Taking his very first ever Moto2 Podium by finishing third. The win was Elias’s sixth of the season, while the ‘Yanks were a bit less fortunate. Making his Moto2 debut, Jason Di Salvo finished a very fine ninth place, making up the most positions of the three riders, 17-places. While Roger Lee Hayden was 17th and Moto2 regular Kenny Noyes finished 19th...

Then it was time for the BIG ‘BOYZ, (MOTO GP) as they’d been doing their somewhat annoying BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRacking during the end of the Moto2 race and it almost seemed starkly quiet when they stopped their racket... But they’re so B-A-D sounding! As soon it was time for the Parade lap, and then OH-MY-GAWD! THEY’RE OFF! As I believe this was the very first time in his brief MOTO GP career that Captain kOOL led a race? As Messer Spies led the first 7-laps whilst being hounded by the pack, especially Dani Pedrosa, having quickly moved up from P5 to second before Slipstreaming Spies into Turn 1 on lap-8 and then disappearing off into the distance... As Pedrosa was simply untouchable and romped to his third win of the season, while Spies recorded his best finish to date as runner-up, holding off the likes of future World Champion George Lorenzo who had his worst finish of the season, coming home in third place...

But as I said, it was Pedrosa’s day, leaving Spies nearly six seconds adrift, while The Doctor, a.k.a. Valentino Rossi quietly worked his way forward, ultimately finishing fourth, while Spies pulled out a 14-second lead over Lorenzo, who uncharacteristically dropped way behind before slowly reeling Spies back in somewhat... As I didn’t know who it was, but noted that the fifth place bike had a distinctly unique sound-note all of its own; who was it? Hmm? That Repsol Honda had a really high shrieking exhaust...

Sunday Race Results
(MOTO GP Partial Race results)
Winner: Dani Pedrosa, Spain; Repsol Honda
2. Ben Spies, USA; Tech 3 Yamaha
3. George Lorenzo, Spain; Fiat-Yamaha
4. Valentino Rossie, Italy; Fiat-Yamaha
5. Andrea Dovizioso, Italy; Repsol Honda
6. Nicky Hayden, USA; Ducati Corse
DNF) Casey Stoner, Australia; Ducati Corse
DNF) Colin Edwards, USA; Tech 3 Yamaha

Ben Spies talks about his best MotoGP finish at Indianapolis

Then on our way back to the infield, I could catch a brief portion of the Post-race Podium interview as we walked towards the main Tunnel, where I heard somebody telling others: DON’T STOP! Apparently a Yellow Shirt? As we were passing nearby the Podium...

And speaking of the famous “Yellow Shirts,” the track’s gynormous (Volunteer) Work force... I must say that once again they were totally wonderful to Mwah! And yeah, I’ve heard ‘bout their supposed roughnecking, along with always being disappointed they first directed us to the wrong parking lot and then couldn’t direct us to the Handicap access during the ’06 USGP ‘Qualie session when the FIA had cordoned off the regular elevator – causing us to MISS the first 25+ minutes; as we’d been mis-directed twice due to NO fault of our own...

As I’m guessing it has something to do with my being the only(?) person on the premises utilizing a white cane, but! They really treated me well; from opening doors for me, saying Hello, even remembering us on Day 2, giving us rides in the buggy back to our parking to avoid crowds and stopping traffic for us to cross; as Y’all might say – Whale Bully! They’re just doing their jobs... Nevertheless I really appreciated the little extra attention they provided me... (As I’m guessing that it’s probably a Thankless job, eh?)

Making our way back to the Turn 2 Suites to wait out the traffic a bit, as I said, a courteous Yellow Shirt stopped the apparent onslaught of 10,000 CRAZED Motorcyclists all exiting the track from the backside... In order for us to cross over to the Suites; as nearly all of these “YeyHoos!” were trying to be louder then the MOTO GP bikes; trying to hit their Rev limiters? Or BLOW UP their silly ‘Scooter lumps by doing a myriad of Smokey burnouts on the way into traffic; SHEISA! As I was gonna put my earplugs back in, but fortunately we got to duck inside the Suite and somebody thankfully closed the door!

Then later, back at Carpets Manor with the Telescreen turned on for any added information upon the day’s racing action, I found it pretty funny that the Reporter said that he’d tell us all ‘bout The Kentucky Kid’s “Wardrobe Malfunction” after the break... As Nicky Hayden apparently ripped his knee puck (slider) off of his riding garb, reputedly hitting a drain, as said slider dangled awhile before eventually dropping off; WTF? I’m still ‘Cornfused to what said drain was doing so close to the racing circuit? Albeit at least it wasn’t as bad as ‘Rubino’s (Barrichello) encounter with a Drain cover around the Principality (Monaco) earlier this year, eh?

Nicky Hayden knee slider damaged by drain at Indianapolis MotoGP

Our evening ended with the traditional After-race Steak dinner prepared by Mr. Carpets... Uhm-Uhm Good! Move over IMS Tenderloin Sandwiches...


Monday, August 30th
Dave graciously took me back to my favourite building on the Speedway’s grounds; the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Hall of Fame museum... which I thoroughly enjoy visiting every time at the Brickyard, as there’s always something new to see... And once again two Yellow shirts opened the doors for me and as I prepared to pay my three smackeroos... (Unaware that the price has increased to $5.00) The nice lady at the desk told me that mine was FREE! As I’ll scribble ‘bout the museum in a separate post later; while afterwards, Dave drove us over to Brownsburg to “Straightliner’s Row,” nee the multiple Drag Racing Operations housed there, pointing out Bill Simpson’s shop, Impact, Don Schumacher Racing, Kenny Bernstein, John force, Don “The Snake” Prudhomme and Pedregon Racing to name a few; which I’m told apparently could have originally been located in Speedway, which now hopes to prop-up its decaying infrastructure with the planned redevelopment featuring Anchor Tenant Dallara Automobili USA...

Tuesday, August 31st
Against much clamoring... I intentionally stayed a few extra days in order to attend Don Kay’s ‘lil Radio Show, a.k.a. the Autosport Radio Hour at McGilvery’s in Speedway, nearby the race track. Thus I was pleasantly surprised with the show’s line-up, as the first guest was Lone Star J.R. Followed by the comedic musing of E.J. Viso who fortunately left his pet Snake at home, along with his unicycle... And I was even more humbled by Don making great fanfare of my trekking to Indianapolis for the MOTO GP event and asking Mr. Rutherford my somewhat esoteric question; wondering if he was still on the Harold LeMay Museum’s Board of Directors? To which J.R. simply replied – Yes. But how enjoyable to be seated directly next to 3-time Indy 500 starter Eldon Rasmussen (1975, 1977, 1979) and listen to J.R. standing ‘bout 10-feet away afterwards signing Autographs...

Wednesday, September 1st
Sadly it was time to go back home, albeit I managed to leave Indy on the day it was expected to rain... As I’ve already scribbled much ‘O my thoughts upon the arduous task of flying these days in: The Dregs ‘O Traveling

As originally I’d thought what was all of the grumblin’ about on my way east when the people behind me took great glee in mumbling ‘bout how a Swizzle stick for your coffee would probably cost $10! As my stomach grumbled due to the lack of choices offered on my flight’s second leg...

But on the way home it all became crystal clear as the Flight Attendant noted the following prices:

$3.49 for a ‘Mondo chocolate chip cookie; mine was icy cool ‘N dripping small droplets of h2-Oh; Hmm?

$3.49 for a can of Pringles stacked potato-chips.

$4.49 for Cheese ‘N Crackers... Or some sorta assorted NUTS plate!

$10 for Turkey sandwich & Bag ‘O chips... As the sandwich seemed fairly dry and consisted more of Sub-style bun then meat... Err, Where’s duh Beef!

$8.00 for a “Blankie” ‘N Pillow set. WTF?

As I became fairly annoyed with the flight back home, as it seems somewhat BULL-SHEISA! That I paid $25 each way to check my bag and skip the frustration of trying to put it in an overhead bin... Which really seemed like a load ‘O Dung since the antiquated Aeroplanes “Uh-Mayr-Cun” (American) was flying only offered large enough Stowage Bins on the one side of the MD-80’s with 3-abreast seating... While the opposite 2-seat side had a smaller Stowage Bin NOT compatible with everyone’s FREAKIN’ roller bags... As shouldn’t I get a $50 refund for this NONSENSE? Not to mention having the wire backed seat pouch inhaling my knees for the entire 4hr flight; WHAHAAAAAAAA!!!

But the overall consensus is that it was definitely WORTH attending the MOTO GP event, which fortunately announced a 1-year contract extension over the racing weekend... And thanxs to Danny & Dave for another great visit to Indy!

Kudos to Jana for providing me with a 3-day Grandstand pass...

Monday, September 27, 2010

Singapore Slings ‘N Fireflies...


(‘KOVY Barbeque; Source: f1fanatic.co.uk)

Whale, it seemed pretty funny to me that on the same weekend the Formula 1 Boyz were lighting up the night sky ‘O Singapore... ‘Nielsun Pickett (Nelson Piquet Junior) was blastin ‘round the Highbanks ‘O “los Wages” Speedway... Oh how the mighty(?) have fallen, eh? As Pickett’s only major Airtime was for magically runnin’ into his teammate exiting Pitlane... As ‘Ol Squeaky-toy (“Aw Shucks!”) Mikey (Waltrip) exclaimed: May be he wasn’t lookin’ wheres heeze was goin? As Pickett’s No. 15 rubbed fenderz with his No. 51 teamate Eric Almirola...

Yet at least Piquet’s evening wasn’t as painful as Indian PickemUp driver Narain Karthikeyan’s, who first got a Shout-out for spinning in Turn 2 early into the race, before I noticed him cloutin’ duh Wall with 40-laps remaining; OOUCH!

But speakin’ of lighting up the night... Team Lotus (2.0) two-point Oh’s ‘KOVY, nee Heikke Kovalainen literally lit up the night skies ‘O Singapore with a massive car fire... As Kova wisely stayed off of Pitlane whilst bringing the stricken Lotus T127 to a complete halt and then abandoning the raging fire...

Hmm? Does anybody have a Marshmallow; Hya!

Hydraulics problem for Trulli as Kovalainen is on fire

Heikki Kovalainen
(Chassis T127-01) 16th, fastest lap 1.53.051 - lap 53, 2 stops – laps 3, 34
“That was not quite how I thought my race would end! Until the fire, I was having a really strong run and the car had felt good throughout. We were looking good for 15th, but then I had a coming together with Buemi towards the end of the race. I spun the car to get back onto the track which I think cracked the fuel tank pressure release valve and it looks like that caused an airbox fire. I didn’t want to come into the pits as it definitely wasn’t safe enough to do so, and pulled over on the main straight. A couple of guys from Williams gave me an extinguisher, so I put the fire out on my own – I told Tony and Mike that they maybe need to pay me more as I’m now a fireman as well…”
(Source: F1technical.net)

Singapore in Pictures

Singapore Race Report

MOTO GP: 2010 Indianapolis Race Outing


(Tech3-Yamaha U.S. special livery; Source: roadracingworld.com; Photo by David Swarts)

Yeah, I know, I should be getting pumped for this weekend’s upcoming IndyCar Homestead Finale... BUTT!

By now Y’all most likely know that your Humble Scribe attended his very first-ever MOTO GP Motorcycle Race... And although when I think of Grand Prix Motorcycle racing Stateside, I typically think of Laguna Seca... Nevertheless, what better place then the Indianapolis Motor speedway to take-in my Debutant MOTO GP event, Eh!

Thursday, August 26th
Today was to be a very long day indeed, especially with the +3hr time change... As I’d needed to be ready to depart for SeaTac Int’l Airport between4-4:20AM; CRIKEYS!
Before the telephone obnoxiously rang at 3:15AM as Dispatch wanted to let me know my Shuttle Express Driver was running late and would arrive at 4:30AM instead... And to think I’d awoken 1hr previous to this – SHEISA!

Arriving curbside at the Airport at 5:10AM, it seemed pretty seamless how it all went, as not one but two Female Check-in Attendant’s looked after me and my Wheelchair arrived to whisk me away at 5:25AM. As the friendly lady pushed me towards the requisite TSA Security Screening compound... We made light Chit-chat and she asked me where I was going? Telling her I was off to the Motorcycle race at Indianapolis, in a very strong Spanish accents she replied – Riding? As I assured her that I wouldn’t be participating, since I probably wouldn’t get very far on a Scooter; Hya!

Seated at my Gate 65mins prior to the 7:05AM Departure time, I found it somewhat annoying how three “Catty-Chatties” Dallas Flight Attendants were seated directly behind me, as one seemed to keep bumping into me as all three blathered on ‘N on about their Hours for the month and how American Airlines automated scheduling system was messed-up... Just what Yuhs wanna listen to at 6-FREAKIN’ AM Eh!

Then the Gate Attendant paged my name and escorted me down the Jetway onto my Day’s first Aeroplane, assisting me to my seat before a very cool Flight Attendant introduced himself to me... As a little later he’d make the announcement: If Y’all wanna Depart for Dallas then we need to have ALL electronic devices turned off at this time... Which brought much Guffawing from the Aeroplane’s cabin.

I say he was “Cool,” since he actually first assisted me back to my seat after using the “Loo,” and then later in the flight stopped and asked me if I needed anything? Then his ‘Pardner for the Back ‘O the Bus led me to the front of the Aeroplane to disembark where another Airport Services Assistant was awaiting me to take me up the Gangplank into the Terminal.

There, I was passed off to the Gate Attendant who called a “Buggy” (Shuttle Cart) for me, which arrived quickly and she escorted me over to my awaiting Buggy, as I don’t know if Y’all have ever been to Dallas/Fort Worth Int’l Airport; BUTT – It’s Humongous! Although at least this time we didn’t have to drive across any of the bridge’s that connect the adjoining Concourses, as we stopped to pick up other passengers, with my connecting flights Gate being last.

Yet the Buggy Driver was exceedingly nice to me, even making a special stop at the Restroom since there weren’t any nearby my Gate and I still had 2hrs before departing... As I exited the Buggy, for some strange reason my folding white cane wouldn’t open... SHEISA! The elastic rope that holds it together had finally snapped...

Thus as they started boarding my Aeroplane without calling for any needing assistance to board early, I tried walking over to the Gate and cutting to the front of the line during First Class boarding before going the wrong way... As a very nice passenger asked me; do you need help? Explaining that my cane had just broke, he said No Problema, I’ll help you... And told the Gate Attendant he’d escort me down the Jetway to our awaiting Aeroplane – Thanks Dude!

Then the Flight attendant walked me to my rearwards seat for our “Short” 1hr 40min flight to Indianapolis... Before she escorted me off the MD-80 Aeroplane to Shantay, (Lucky No. 13 – Assistants) who was waiting at the Gate to assist me to my awaiting party, as Danny B & Dia were standing at the Security exit waiting for Mwah... After getting my bag and their car, D ‘N D whisked me off to one of my favourite Restaurant’s; Union Jacks for a much needed dinner...

Friday, August 27th
We’d originally planned to be at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) Credentials Office when it opened at 7AM, but decided to go considerably later since there was no Ontrack action Friday morning, albeit the Pitlane Walkabout would have been fun; Oh Whale...

Thus walking into an empty Credentials Office I was taken care of immediately and we set off for the IMS infield a la parking pass – Sweet! Before trundling off to see what was going on.

Exiting our vehicle, we walked thru the Manufacturer’s Midway towards the SPEED Stage where Ralph Sheheen was interviewing the Ducati Marlboro Corse MOTO GP Team riders Casey Stoner and “the Kentucky Kid,” a.k.a. Nicky Hayden, which could be briefly heard over the IMS’s PA system before suddenly having the “Plug pulled.” Then we briefly hung out as Ralph and Toby Moody of DAKAR fame (Versus’s Onsite Reporter) began an Auction of various items with the two riders participating.

Next we moseyed over to Ducati Island, which had some of their mesmerizing Street bikes on display, like one “Red Rocket” with a sticker price of $21k – CRIKEYS! While there we picked up some very nice Ducati embossed lanyards, so we could “Look Sharp,” before Danny picked up some more ‘Swag items for me to take home. Then we went thru the Honda Tent, complete with MOTO GP “Scooter” you could have your picture taken on, but you needed to have your own camera, which we were both without...

And prior to the Honda Tent, Danny noticed a SPEED booth complete with MOTO GP backdrop and the requisite “SPEED Girls,” informing me I needed to have my picture taken with them, what the Hell, right? (In for a pound, in for a penny...)



Girls Girls Girls!
(Tomaso’s New Friendz)

And I couldn’t believe I left my ear plugs in my Backpack at le Hotel Carpets; Aye Karumba! As the first Motorcycle noises we heard (minus a ‘Duc at Ducati Isle...) were some narly sounding “Thumpers,” as my notes sez; “Low Grade Thumpers” before the 125cc class. As originally I thought; surely those can’t be the Race bikes, eh? As I now believe they musta been the 4-stroke Moriwaki MD250H USGPRU (Moriwaki MD250H Spec single cylinder 250cc 4-strokes) Support class bikes that Peter Lenz was racing that fateful weekend. As it appears these bikes will become part of the Moto3 class slated for introduction in 2012.

And I was surprised that the Bikes run the same direction as the Cars, i.e.; Indy Car & ‘RASSCAR, as I’d assumed they’d be running the opposite direction like the Formula 1 cars used too... (DAMN! I miss F1 at Indy... Yet I certainly hope Austin comes to fruition!)

As the 125cc’s took to the track, I told Danny they’re loud. To which he replied; they sound like Popcorn... As I noticed that all too familiar odor of sweet smelling racing grade Octane wafting up from the Racetrack towards us thru the lower level Grandstands. Watching the action from directly opposite the Pagoda with the Media Center to our left, on the front straightaway...

And I felt bad for the 125cc riders, since it wasn’t anything against them, or the Moto2 class, but they were simply warm-up for the BIG ‘BOYZ, nee MOTO GP, which I was primarily interested in... As it was interesting how the noise level increased with each larger Displacement class, as the Moto2 bikes were louder and higher pitched then the 125cc’s... While the MOTO GP bikes were simply DEAFENING!

As I noted they’re simply INSANE! And that was even before any Ontrack activities... Being surprised how loud they were as the 125cc ‘Boyz were practicing. While the MOTO GP “Scooters” could clearly be heard barking over the din of the 125cc bikes Ontrack... As the Mechanics were blipping throttles constantly on Pitlane: BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRack- BurRack! (Which would become a constant theme over the weekend...)

Then we went for a different viewing angle, as we climbed all the way to the very top of the upper level Main Grandstands, where I’d never been before... As I found this to be an ultra cool vantage point; Hey! Isn’t that the Yard of Bricks I’m looking down upon? YES! As it was interesting to notice how the majority of the 125cc riders seemed to be hugging the “inside” (Outside Wall) from our vantage point; just like how the Indy Car Drivers run the Oval... As it looked to me that our Grandstand seat that Danny informed me would go for $130.00 on Raceday was above the Media Center – YIKES! Although Danny said we’re level with it and I believe that it’s situated on the 5th floor, while the Cafeteria’s on the 3rd, where they serve Danny’s favourite Crème sodas...

And my notes say that the MOTO GP Bikes sound like NASTY Uncorked Hot Rods! Which was very HARSH upon my ears, and we resorted to an old trick of using TP to attempt muffling those rancorous Motorcycles whailing from far below our perch!

As I’ve said before: How do I even attempt describing MOTO GP? I mean they’re simply the BADDEST BAD ASSES of ALL Motorcycles... Just plain NARLY! And I still cannot comprehend how that MUCHO NOISE can be generated by these 800cc ‘Reptilianz... Although I’d later hear over the PA system that they’re limited to a maximum decibel level of 130Db’s... HUH? Did Yuhs say’s somme-thuns? But the strangest thing to Mwah was that after the BIG ‘BOYZ (MOTO GP) had spent approx. 5mins BurRapping their throttles prior to their Free Practice session, they suddenly stopped with about 3mins left in the 125cc Practice session, which made the circuit seem somewhat starkly quiet... Then they refired the bikes for their Practice session; may be in order to let the riders mount their steeds?

And during the 125cc Free Practice session, two thoughts came to mind.
A) Do all three series utilize the same grade racing fuel? Or does the Octane rating increase with each class?

B) How many 125cc riders make it to MOTO GP? As it appears that all three current U.S. riders graduated from World Superbike and skipped the 125cc-250cc (Moto2) feeder route...

And then the BIG BOYZ took to the track and they’re simply amazingly FAST! Especially down the Front straightaway, as I’d “LUV” to know the respective classes Straight-line speeds...

And I swear the “Works” (Factory) ‘Duc’s (Ducati’s) have their very own unique sound, i.e.; different exhaust note; which I don’t know if it’s due to exhaust routing or their Desmodromic valvetrain? They’re “Throatier” and LOUD! As I’m not certain if all of the MOTO GP ‘Scooters are louder then an Indy Car? (Especially since I wasn’t in the same Grandstands and sans Earplugs...) And they seem to be riding down the middle of the track and have a very different sound going into Turn 1; kinda like Tractor’s barely slowing down...

Afterwards I’m treated to going to my very first ever IMS Suite in Turn 2, where we hang out for the Moto2 Practice session, which has a ‘Gynormous field of 40 participants... As we sit outside briefly on the Suite’s patio in the blazing sun, looking directly into it... What did your Momma say ‘bout starin’ into the Sun, eh?

Back inside to the AC and some lively banter before leaving for the day. On our way out Danny points out a “LAMBO” parked in the lot below, whale let’s go check it out! Approaching the white Lamborghini Gallardo three ‘Aussies inquire; is that your car? As they’re from Perth and on Holiday; as two of them work in Sydney and they’ve been to the Knoxville Nationals, Bristol ‘RASSCAR race (something else Saturday night) and the MOTO GP weekend, before we say our Goodbye Mates... Having recommended the Saturday night flat track event if they’re looking for something to attend, as I was unaware that The Kentucky Kid was gonna be competing!

Video of Nicky Hayden riding the Indy mile – amazing footage

Indy Notes
Both Fiat Yamaha riders are once again running the special Fiat 500' livery that was showcased in Laguna Seca earlier this season. The livery celebrates the forthcoming launch of the Fiat 500 in the United States and features the smiling faces of 500 Rossi and Lorenzo fans on each bike.
(Source: Superbikeplanet.com)


MOTO GP: Teams run Special liveries at U.S. Grand Prix

MOTO GP: Rossi – Better or worse with Special liveries?

Yankee Doodle Dandies
There are three ‘Yanks in MOTO GP: Colin Edwards, Nicky Hayden and Rookie Ben Spies.

There’s a total of three Moto2 Wildcard Entries: Jason Di Salvo Qualified 27thaboard his GP Tech FTR M210, Roger Lee Hayden 29th on his No. 34 Team Honda/Moriwaki bike and Kenny Noyes 30th on his No. 9 Jack & Jones by A. Banderas machine.

Moto2: American Trio tests at Indianapolis

Friday Top 8
1st Casey Stoner; Ducati Corse: 1'40.884
P2) George Lorenzo; Fiat-Yamaha: 1:41.109
P3) Nicky Hayden; Ducati Corse: 1'41.405
P4) Dani Pedrosa ; Repsol Honda: 1:41.421
P5) Valentino Rossi; Fiat-Yamaha: 1:41.623
P6) Colin Edwards; Tech 3-Yamaha: 1:41.664
P7) Andrea Dovizioso; Repsol Honda: 1:41.683
P8) Ben Spies; Tech 3-Yamaha: 1:41.722

Friday Notes

Saturday, September 25, 2010

F1: Singapore notes


Whale, it’s getting down to the Nitty Gritty, eh? As it was noted by SPEED’s F1 Pitboy “Willy Buxom” that we’re currently in the tightest Drivers Points battle since 1962 when five drivers were in a similar points ‘Scrum with five races remaining... Which if I recall correctly went down to the final round with three Drivers in the Hunt in Mexico City before Graham Hill was victorious...

2010 Drivers Championship
P1) Mark Webber; 187 points
P2) Lewis Hamilton; 182 pts
P3) Fernando Alonso; 166 pts
P4) Jenson Button; 165 pts
P5) Sebastian Vettel; 163 pts
(As of Round 14 – Monza, Italy)

Friday Notes
Thus it was quite enjoyable to have these Top-5 Combatants taking the day’s Top-5 times, albeit the Red Bull Duo looks overly strong with Master ‘Zebb being six-tenths ahead of his Aussie teammate Webber. Who was a further four-tenths clear of ‘JENSE (Button) in P3. “Ferdi-the-Putz” (Alonso) was fourth after having missed the last 21mins with a mysterious “Dead-stick” malady, while the young Louise ‘JAGUAR (Hamilton) was fifth; minus 1.158 seconds to Vettel.

Interestingly it was noted that McLaren was claiming to experience some Electrical “Gremlins” at the notorious circuit where Mark Webber’s Red Bull chassis unexplainably decided to select two gears simultaneously, which the Team believes was caused by the Underground Subway?

F1: the Bright lights of Singapore – 2009 Edition

And it was also mentioned how the City has improved the lighting plus added high-visibility paint to walls, etc to aid the drivers during the weekend’s event. Here’s a story I scribbled ‘bout the lighting back in ’08 prior to “Crash Gate.”

Singapore tests lighting

Meanwhile on the driver front, while I’d already mentioned ‘Quick Nick’s return to competition for Sauber, I was surprised to here that Christian Klien was substituting for “Sacko-Moneyato,” a.k.a. Sakon Yamamoto who reportedly has come down with a case of Food Poisoning, which F1 Cynics are noting could be due to other “Financial” reasons. As I’ve heard somewheres’ that Hispania could even potentially bump its way into Tenth in the Constructors battle which would be excellent for the little Team that Could! As the FIA doles out travel incentives to the first 10-place finishers in the Constructors Championship...

And somehow I’d missed that Klien had previously driven in Friday morning stints for HRT, albeit he hasn’t contested a Formula 1 race since being ousted from Red Bull at the conclusion of the 2006 season...

Adding insult-to-injury, Force India’s Adrian Sutil not only walloped the kerbs, going airborne and breaking his left Front suspension, but was fined $10,000 for not pulling off track quickly enough. Deciding to first try limping back to the Pits with wounded Racecar before the Team instructed him to pull off-course, but the Stewards deemed his actions weren’t swift enough and levied said fine upon him...

Saturday Notes
Then again, there’s a reason that they run Qualifying, eh? As we’ll shortly discover that the fastest in Practice wasn’t necessarily on the top ‘O the Time sheets come Saturday...

Yet we started off the ‘Qualie Show by Will Buxton interviewing Virgin’s Timo Glock and telling him; “you’re naught-8 seconds clear of all the other new teams...” To which Glock was pretty diplomatic and said we’ll see what happens? As Glock wound-up 18th and “Best-of-the-Rest,” nee New Teams in a game of Virgin-Lotus Leapfrog...

And it was nice that SPEED actually spent some time profiling ‘N talking-up the three New Teams thru the closing stages of Q1, albeit Hispania’s Bruno Senna spun... While it was noted that both newcomers Christian Klien and Nick Heidfeld were faster then their teammates in Q1...

Mercedes GP and Virgin both reported having lost their Telemetry during Q1, but the biggest disappointment obviously went to Felipe Massa and his stricken Ferrari, as Massa’s F10 came to a sudden halt, causing a Red flag to be thrown with 10:35 remaining in the first Qualifying session... As Massa’s radio was replayed with him saying I think its engine? Before being listed as P24 with No Time due to a troubling Transmission Electronics fault, (Gearbox) albeit Luca di Montezemolo was quick to point out it wasn’t any Electrical Surging from the track circuit... As Alonso suffered from an experimental transmission piece failure on Friday and then had to pit suddenly during ‘Q2 to fix a similar electronics issue which he later revealed was an Engine Mapping problem before moving onto ‘Q3.

Also waiting ‘til the last moment to improve was Michael Schumacher, who’d been mired down in P17 the majority of the second session before a late Flyer-lap saw him sneak into ‘Q3 in P9, followed by Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi, who outqualified his vastly experienced teammate Heidfeld, who finished 15th in his F1 return.

And then the Gauntlet was thrown down as Fernando, Vettel, Hamilton and Button all traded fast laps whilst hunting for the Pole which Alonso took in the latter stages, his and Ferrari’s second consecutive Pole Position after a 30-race drought. Master ‘Zebb (Vettel) was just fractions of a second behind in P2, having even apparently brushed the wall in the final moments, while ‘JAGUAR (Hamilton) took the final Post-race interview seat, (third)as the McLaren Boyz ‘Louise ‘N ‘JENSE (Button)locked out the second row of the grid with Webber P5. Followd by ‘Rubino, (Barrichello) Nico Rosberg, ‘The Krakow Kid, (Robert Kubica) Schuey And “K-Squared” (Kobayashi) respectively...

RETRO: Keeping past IndyCar Flames alive

And speaking of the REAL Team Lotus... Don’t know if Y’all heard that Dario “REO Speedwagon” Franchitti fulfilled one of his life’s dreams this past week at The Speedway... As I know just how enthralled Dario is about his Hero Jimmy Clark, as I recall it being mentioned that the Flying Dutchman, a.k.a. Arie Luyendyk Sr. (working as a Spotter) gave Franchitti a pair of Jim Clark playing cards during this Month of May... As Dario had the amazing privilege of driving The Flying Scot’s 1965 Lotus 38 Ford IndyCar around The Brickyard! As in none other then the 1965 winning Indy 500 chassis that Clark dominated the race with and has only ever been driven by the late Messer Clark and some chap known as The Wee Scot... None other then Sir Jackie Stewart, so I’d say that Dario’s in pretty rarefied company there, eh?

Fulfilling The Dream Of A Lifetime
Now if only somebody could keep him strapped into Clark’s chassis and not unbuckle him ‘til after the Homestead race was finished a; Hya!
Meanwhile I see that venerable Open Wheel Journalist and LUV-able “Hack” Gordon Kirby has just written about Paul Newman. Having been the featured speaker at a recent fund raising event for Newman’s Hole-in-the-Wall Gang Camps...

Paul Newman’s enduring legacy

Friday, September 24, 2010

Will the real Team Lotus please stand up...


Whale, I haveda say I’m somewhat happy to see that I weren’t the only ‘Juan Cornfuzed by who really is Team Lotus these days? As after my initial puzzlement Wednesday morning, as I’d noticed that there would now be two Lotus efforts competing in Open Wheel Racing; Huh? I was happy to discover first Adam Cooper shed light upon this before Joe Saward expounded upon it.

An F1 mess developing in Malaysia

But I’d have to say it’s somewhat amusing, albeit irksome to think that there’s a Tug ‘O War going on over such a great name from the past... As I’m sorry Mr. Fernandes, but Team Lotus is DEAD! And died a whimpering, miserable death way back in 1994...

Fernandes brings Team Lotus name back

Muddying the GP2 waters

GP2, the “Preferred” Feeder series into Formula 1 has just announced its next 3yr allotment of Competitors for the 2011-13 GP2/GP2 Asia series, with 13 entrants for its upcoming Trimester.

And perhaps its just me, but where I got confused was when I read the announcement that ART Grand Prix has just merged with Lotus to form Lotus-ART to compete in both GP2 and GP3, whilst current Lotus Racing F1 boss tony Fernandes has gained entrance as one of the two new entries with his Team Air Asia entry; Huh? Of which speculation suggests that Fernandes & Co. will become Team Lotus in 2011, having bought the name from the Hunt family.

Carmaker Lotus entering GP2 with ART team

Thus, as I first discovered from Grizzled “Journo” Joe Saward, ART Grand Prix, partially controlled by Nicolas Todt, and winner’s of the 2005-06 and 2009 GP2 Drivers crowns, has decided to collaborate with Lotus Motorsport, the Car making entity, currently owned by Malaysian Auto manufacturer Proton, while Fernandes’s Lotus Racing is a completely separate Operation. And although it would be ludicrous to presume that there would be two Lotuses, Err “Loti” ever on the Formula 1 grid... Is the Lotus-ART alignment a possible suitor for an existing F1 Constructor in the future? As recall that ART pulled its application for the still vacant 13th F1 Entrant earlier this year after being unable to find the necessary funding...

Battle over use of Lotus name

GP2 announces 2011 entrants

The GP2 Series has just announced that for its forthcoming term of competition from 2011-13, when the series races a new chassis on new rubber, i.e.; Pirelli, that 13 Teams will contest both the “Winter” GP2 Asia and (main) “Summer” GP2 Championships.

Eleven current competitors will return with the addition of Carlin Motorsports and Team Air Asia rounding out the field of 13 Teams. Carlin is a well known concern, having won multiple “lower” Feeder category series, while Team Air Asia is a brand new entity linked to current Lotus Racing F1 Boss tony Fernandes.

The 13 Teams are: Arden International; (NED) ART Grand Prix; (FRA) Barwa Addax Team; (ESP) Carlin; (GBR) Dams; (FRA) iSport International; (GBR) Ocean Racing Technology; (POR) Racing Engineering; (ESP) Rapax; (ITA) Scuderia Coloni; (ITA) Super Nova Racing; (GBR) Team Air Asia; (MAS) Trident Racing (ITA)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Virgin’s new Shue

Interestingly Virgin has just confirmed that Belgian GP2 competitor Jerome d’Ambrosio has been inked as its Friday morning test driver for the next four Grand Prix outings, replacing current Virgin F1 driver Lucas di Grassi, albeit Di Grassi will keep his race seat until the end of the season, with an option unexercised for 2011...
As the move is similar to what Force India is currently doing with Paul di Resta and Adrian Sutil at the moment.

While Virgin has disclosed the Team’s second seat will run it’s holder a cool $5.0m Euros next year, as its worth noting that d’Ambrosio is a protégé of Gerard Lopez’s Gravity Sports Management, as in the same Lopez who controls GenII Capitol, the parent company of the Renault F1 team. Thus is d’Ambrosio simply garnering his F1 superlicense in time for a 2011 drive in order to put pressure upon Petrov and Di Grassi? While d’Ambrosio will also participate in the season ending F1 Young Drivers test program after the Abu Dhabi GP...

Reggie Roadshow ‘N more

In an attempt to promote Formula One and ultimately its Automobile brands, the “Reggie” has announced it’ll be taking its vaunted Renault F1 Roadshow to Korea, “Just-in-Time” for the fast approaching inaugural Korean Grand Prix in a scant month’s time...

Renault gears up for South Korean Roadshow

Meanwhile much speculation continues to swirl over who’ll partner “The Krakow Kid,” a.k.a. Robert Kubica in 2011, as Russian Rookie Vitaly Petrov’s continuance with the Team seems to not only be centered around his father’s Cheque book, but his driving abilities... As speculation has seen The Kimster’s, nee Kimi Raikkonen’s name thrown into the hat amongst others... Although it would seem silly to dismiss the fact that Uncle Bernaughty (Ecclestone) desperately wishes to crack the Russian market, therefore keeping the young Vitaly employed as a Gran Primo Piloto along with India’s Karun Chandhok...

Sauber makes Moves

By now I’m guessing Y’all have heard that Sauber has dismissed Pedro de la Rosa in favour of longtime Sauber and BMW-Sauber Prodigy “Quick Nick” Heidfeld, beginning with this weekend’s Singapore GP and thru the remaining five Grand Prix’s, in what possibly could be an audition for the vacant 2011 second Sauber F1 seat. As the Hinwil-based Squad has already confirmed Japan’s Kamui Kobayashi for 2011.

Heidfeld began the season as Mercedes GP’s Test & Reserve Driver before being allowed to depart for the Pirelli testing role, before vaulting back into a race drive at Sauber. While its still unclear if De la Rosa will resume a testing role, albeit now for the upcoming Pirelli rubber concern, for which ex-Renault F1 driver Romain Grosjean Has been tabbed for the firm’s upcoming Monza test...

Meanwhile, having previously gone out on a limb in Picking a Formulae, I’m please to have read all over the Blogosphere that Esteban Gutierrez; one of my three picks for future Formula 1 duties has been confirmed as Sauber’s Test & Reserve Driver in 2011, continuing his affiliation with Peter Sauber’s F1 Organization, which he was privy to this year enroute to his GP3 Championship. As my other two nominees are “the young Wicky” (Robert Wickens) and Alexander Rossi, while it’s also obvious that Sweden’s Marcus Ericsson is trying to also join the frame...

Gutierrez will once again participate in the season ending F1 Young Drivers test program after the Abu Dhabi GP, having done so last year for the then BMW Sauber concern as his prize for winning the Formula BMW European title...

Gutierrez confirmed for Sauber test role in 2011

Monday, September 20, 2010

25 Carz or 12 versus 10


As I was waiting ALL day long
(SATURDAY)
For it to become DARK outside...

My “Auntie” Harriet asked me again
What time does that Grand Prix race begin?
And where are those Formula One Carz racing at?
And then she asked me again
Do you know what time that race thingy begins?
(And where is Motegi?)

Oh, do you mean the Grand Prix of Motegi?
And I asked is that Motegi, New York, Indy or West Coast time
Yuhs wanna know?
BUTT does it really matter what time it is
At the Twin Rings ‘O Motegi?
As I noticed there's another
DannaWho? BARF! (AP) story
In the Minneapolis Star Thursday...
About her MOST Fortuitous victory of ‘08
So I DON'T really care
What time it is in Motegi...
(But it’s getting’ darker outside...
Which means its getting somewhat closer to Preamble time!)

HELL!
Even Kurt Cavin sez a different starting time
Then indycar.com... (And Versus)
Unless the race doesn't really begin 'til 12-midnight ET?

So do Y’all know what time the race ends?

As I sat down alongside my nearly 91-years young ‘Aunty Harriet to watch something I rarely ever due; the overly ANNOYING Versus Indy Car Central Preamble Show... Of which everyone paying mild attention to the Telescreen began getting overly fidgety ‘bout... As I became MOST anxious for the BLOODY F%%KING race to begin!

As Katherine said: Oh look Harriet, there’s Tomaso’s favourite female race driver Danica Patrick... BARF!

As you’ve gotta be joking – right? For probably only the second time ever, as I wasn’t in charge of the clicker, I actually listened to a DannaWho interview... As she blathered on ‘bout how big her Twin Ring ’08 Motegi trophy was, sayin’ mine’s Bigger... YIKES! And she was really happy ‘bout gettin’ a Japanese Starbucks travel mug and whether or not she was going to keep the Hello Kitty blanket she’d received in return for her Autograph... As apparently the Japanese custom is to give the requested Celebrity a “Presento” in return for their “John Hancock.”

But I did enjoy the ‘TK “follow-your-Schnoz” (Kanaan) piece; even if it was overacted... As I was very happy to see that he had a Greg Moore crash-bucket proudly displayed in his Helmet collection, along with “Rubino,” (Barrichello) Herta, “Mikey,” (Andretti) Dario, etc, on display and not tucked away inside a desk drawer...

WTF? Yuhs means the FRILLIN’ race AIN’T gonna begin ‘til 9PM (Pacific?) Which means that vaunted New York crowd has-duh WAIT ‘til Midnight; YOUCH!

Hey DOESN’T Princess Sparkle Pony’s chariot turn into a Pumpkin then? Oh wait a mine-nute ‘Dar, its 1PM Sunday over ‘Dare, righty? Err, 12AM Indy; Oh Never Mind!

Thus the three Amigos stayed up ‘til 9:30-9:45PM (Seattle time) ‘Cause meeze ‘Aunties needed her slumber before getting up early in order to go to Saint Rita’s to hear Father (la) Sacco the next morning. Telling aunty Harriet don’t forget that when you PEAK, you WIN! YUK!!!

Thus I fitfully drifted off feeling somewhat “Gutted” and DISAPOINTED ‘bout Will Power’s outcome as he’d fallen to P9 with that BLASTED “REO Speedwagon” (Dario Franchitti) in third; SHEISA! Having over anticipated the ensuing yellow caused by Alex “Royd’s” mysterious stoppage...

Thus, in case Y’all don’t know I’m roootin’ for the “Toowoomba Toranadoe” ‘N Webber Mate to do the ‘aussie Double this year and sweep the Indy Car & F1 table with Will Power & Mark Webber being crowned the Champions of their respective series...

Having been aware of Power’s talent during his Champ Car days, as he & The Hamburgular (Bourdais) seemed to be two thorns in Justin ‘BIG UNIT Wilson’s side... I’d always been somewhat a Fan of his... But that all changed that Lucky day back in May 2009 when I was most fortunate to be introduced via Danny B, as Will was wandering alone thru the Hall of Fame museum and he was most gracious with Mwah, just the Humble Scribe of some miniscule Open Wheel Racing Blog, even going so far as to shake my hand! (And thus another FAN was born!)

But I haveda say I’m getting somewhat nervous over Power’s fading chances as Franchitti first trimmed his 59 point lead to 23, then 17 and now what? As I spent all day Sunday NOT wanting to know the results ‘cause I’m taping the race on the trusty ‘Ol VCR... So I’ll watch it whenever I get home, right? HA-HA-HA! Jokes on me...

But back to those Versus guys, as what in-carnation did Bob Jenkins mean when he said that Roger Yasukawa is a Native American of Japanese Descent? Uh, does that mean I’m a Native American of French Descent? Or does that mean I’ve got Native American (Indian) blood in me? But I digress...

As back to the Memorex, watching it back all the way up to where we’d called it an evening – somewhat early Saturday night... Just another commercial break after Mario ‘M & M Moraes’s hard crash against the Safer barrier...

As I just kept chanting loudly at the Telescreen C’MON POWER! C’MON WILL! GET UP THERE!

As it was a most humbling experience to haveda be rootin’ for HULIO; ACK! And Ryan “Disco Inferno” Briscoe to win the race and run in a Penske Roadtrain 1-2 formation to takeaway points from Dario; Aye Karumba! As I had to pull for Castroneves the whole evening, Err race, eh?

Returning home Sunday evening there was a message awaiting me, as Mary Ellen informed me that I’d left my coat down south; CRIKEYS! As she said to call her as soon as I knew the results of the race; and thus this morning I began watching le Memorex with fingers crossed that Will Power would get back up front and even possibly pass Dario? As I didn’t expect him to win, but a Podium sure would be nice!

As Bob Jenkins spent considerable time discussing Anthony Foyt IV & Casey Irsay’s baby arrival during a lengthy yellow flag period with even Robbie Buhl getting into the act by sayin' that makes "Quattro" a Colts fan... And even Mr. BRUT Arute-Arute (Jack) jumped on the BabyTrain with another of his stirring "Human interest pieces 'bout the Japanese Teenage fan who took 'Quattro to an ATM machine back in '03 and is a big time friend of the Foyt's now & was even working with the team this weekend...

As I’m left wanderin’ if all this homage to the Foyt’s had anything to do with the A.J. Foyt Oval(teane) Cup being awarded in Japan... As ‘Ol Super Tex AIN’T going abroad for some silly Open Wheel race; Yuhs Hear!

And Oh-My-GAWD!!! DannaWho finished 5th as they talked incessantly 'bout her ALL race long... She could win it again... May be? Where’s she now? Roll the Marty “Nationwide” Reid Battle Cry: “Move over Boyz, the Ladies coming thru!” As we’re gonna MILK the SHIT outta this glorious victory Coup d'état ‘O ‘Danicker’s Yuhs hear??? SHEISA! As I’d swear I almost thought I was watchin’ an ABC IRL DannaWho? ‘LUV-Fest-athon Broadcast... As all we were missing was Brent ‘Muss-burger’s foaming over Danica; Oh Never Mind!

At least Professor Jon Bekhuis gave “Simona-Simona” (De Silvestro) a Shout-out as the Minnowesqe HVM Racing Team was forced to go to their third chassis of the season after Simona got walloped by Vitor Meira at Kentucky... And Hey! Milkalicious gained the most positions (6) at the beginning of the race...

As all I could do was laugh out LOUD as while I’d been talkin’ to the TV; C’mon, throw the DAMN Green flag! Nervously watchin' the tape that inexplicably cut off short with 12-laps remaining; WTF!!! As for reasons unknown I’d set the recordin’ device to end exactly at, let’s see carry the 5, multiply by 3, add 16hrs + 3, then subtract 19 hours for Seattle Time... Err I’d ASS-sumed that Versus broadcast would end at 2AM NY/ET/Indy time... Or 11PM Seattle time; BUTT NOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!! It went LONG! Somme-thun to dooze with all ‘Dem yellows? (Or was it ‘Dat overly LONG Preamble Hypefest?) And thus I still didn’t know who’d won the DARN BLASTED THINGY! Having to resort to zi internetz...

Thus reporting in, I told Mary Ellen how although I didn’t think it meant a DAMN THING! Nevertheless I was pleasantly surprised to hear Bob Jenkins report that 37% of their Poll thought Will Power should win the Title over Dario’s 27% as she said who’s the other 36%? Whale I’m guessing its HULIO Fans? Although I believe he’s mathematically eliminated now; as he’s 86 points adrift and there’s only a maximum of 53 left... Whale, you’d better go back and find out if it was “Should win or will win?” To which I’ve now gone back and painfully fast forwarded thru my 2hrs ‘O tape (-1hr Pre-race) to learn that 37% think Will Power is going-to-win the Championship.

As I’d like to have heard the Post-race interviews where apparently Will told Dario he was gonna kick his ARSE! To which Franchitti replied; Bring it! As HULIO dominated the entire race, winning comfortably ahead of Franchitti, with Power third, Briscoe fourth and Danica rounding out the Top-5. As we go to Homestead, Miami in a Fortnight to decide the 2010 Indy Car Series Title which Will Power leads by a narrow 12 points...

GO WILL POWER!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Grand Am at IMS – Should it Happen?

Here’s another story that’s apparently been trapped in a No Fenders WormHole... As this thought bubble was originally spurred by that clever story the ‘DAWG ” (PressDog) penned about disturbing occurances known as Angstadt Units of Time, (A.U.T.) which Y’all can read in Bill’s hilarious story: Investigators Probe Connection between Brazil IndyCar Race and USF1 Team. Although I prefer to call this phenomenon the IUT (“IngleFart” Unit of Time) Err No Fenders WormHole since we’re all supposed to be takin’ IndyCar Happy pills now! But I digress…

Obviously this won’t happen in the year twenty-ten with the IMS having just hosted its final “BIG” race of the year with the MOTO GP having just been completed... Yet with the Brickyard race sufferin’ and this being the final year of the current MOTO GP contract along with it being the middle year of the Three year Centennial-thon, it seemed like a good topic at the beginning of this year’s racing season...

Thus your Humble Scribe found it quite humorous earlier this year just how much traction the debate over whether or not the Indianapolis Motor Speedway should run those UGLY Duckling Grand-Am Sports Cars at the hallowed Speedway received from the “bloggaratzi” previously, which now seems like a long, lost, forgotten story, eh?

Years ago, when I was still a DIED in the wool CART Aficionado, I SWORE I’d NEVER-EVER-EVER attend the INDY 500 after the much maligned Tony G. started the rival IRL Ovals R Us series, especially after he enacted the infamous 25-8 Rule! Although my stance shifted subtly when “Bert ‘N Ernie” brought the Formula 1 circus to town and I made the cross country trek to see Schuey ‘N Co. run the road course at IMS in the fabled year of 2001… Even having the audacity to sit in the Indy Racing League chassis in the Hall of Fame museum, which was set up for the purpose of spectators having their picture taken professionally; you know as in a slight nominal fee… (As in I’ll gladly pay you Thursday for my picture taken Today!) Or better yet by a friend or family member, but I digress…

And upon the completion of last year’s MOTO GP event, I had an entertaining discussion with Danny B about how KOOL it would be to have Formula 1 and MOTO GP as a twin bill weekend, to which I promptly replied will NEVER happen as long as Uncle Bernaughty is alive…

Thus, it pains me once again to find some ‘Juan else beating me to the punch, as I have to say I agree with a lot of Geo. Phillips (Oil Pressure) sentiments, as I too originally considered it BLASTAMY to add a second event at the hallowed Brickyard, especially those GD BOMBERS, nee Tin tops, Err RASSCAR of which you can see how twisted they are by wanting to kiss the yard ‘O bricks; ACK! Yet Formula Uno? Bring it On!

Thus after having made my initial pilgrimage to “Mecca,” I’d be fortunate enough to see those funny ‘lil Foreign “Jobbers” (F1) run bass-ackwards at the Speedway a second time in ’06, when I’d delighted to doing my best Herr Schumacher impersonation of waving my Maestro’s baton whilst humming the Italian National anthem to the delight of the TERMINATOR’s record fifth victory at IMS…

Along with first riding the Indy Experience 2X Seater around the Speedway and then finally attending my very first INDY 500 last year, as I’m now looking forward to attending my inaugural MOTO GP event at IMS... While HELL, I’d even be game for watching a rival Sports Car event at 16th & Georgetown, since it would be somebody besides either Penske or TCGR winning, eh? (As I’m even starting to think a Tony Kanaan victory for Andretti Autosport would be refreshing...) While I’ll skip the ALMS vs. Grand-Am hullaballoo; as I’m decidedly an American Le Mans Series supporter, albeit they too, like IndyCars DON’T run at my Home track of Portland anymore… Uhm, queue the violins track as Tomaso starts to get all weepy ‘bout Portland!

As Sports Cars at IMS would provide a different flavour to the venue, while I continue pondering whether or not to attend this year’s INDY 500? (OOPS! I think I missed it, eh?) As George sez; there’s really no historical significance to the middle year of the Centennial Trilogy that IMS has so cleverly crafted and thus I wholeheartedly agree that a special “One-Off” Grand-Am Sports Car event should have occurred in 2010...

Why Grand Am Shouldn’t Race at IMS

Why?

Yet why not mimic the was then sound logic of back-to-back events of the Canadian-USGP by having the Grand-Am circus roll across the border the week after the Montreal event? And although “Scooter’s” (Scott Pruett) idea has merit of running from sunrise into twilight in order to experience the cachopany ‘O colours, I’d like to suggest making it a nine hour event; Number 9? Number 9? Number 9!!! Since there’s already six and twelve hour events being campaigned, thus making it different once again.

Of course its gotta run on the Formula Uno circuit the same direction they did as sweeping onto the nine degrees banked Turn 1 and blasting down the long main straightaway is the only way to express the Speedway’s flavour… While even better yet, if IMS was smart, make it a fall event that doesn’t conflict with either Motegi or Petit Le Mans in order to give some of the Indy Car Series “Supersarz” (Can uze say Princess-URGH!) the opportunity to compete.

So, where do I get my ticket at? As I’d gladly be willing to make the cross country trek to take in a special Grand-Am Sports Car race this year. Oh Never Mind, that’s right, I’m going to watch the “Scooters” instead...

Should IMS host a Grand-am race?

Monday, September 13, 2010

F1: Monza notes


(Felipe Massa at Monza; source: F1 Fanatic.co.uk)

Yeah, it’s been awhile since I’ve posted any in-depth Grand Prix race weekend notes... As I’m sitting on a bevy ‘O GP Reports that I’ll publish in the upcoming future in order to bring my Top-8 scribblins’ up to date... Meanwhile here’s a bunch of items that caught my attention over the weekend at Juan ‘O the most inspiring Formula 1 venues, as Y’all just cannot beat the atmosphere of the Tiafosi at the legendary Autodromo Nazionale Monza.

Friday NotesWhale it was kinda ironic to hear Ralph Sheheen’s voice as the Practice 2 lead announcer, as I’d just heard him for two days over the PA system at The Brickyard, during the Indy MOTO GP weekend. (Another story I’m trying to put-to-Bed...) As first Ralph said that Bob Varsha was stranded in the Las Vegas desert before noting that Varsha was busy spending his last few Quarters in “Los Wages” before flying back to Charlotte... As I rather enjoyed Sheheen’s work, especially as he seemed extra funny ‘N quick witted, causing both ‘Hobbo “N Professor Matchett to chortle out loud. As it was a fairly humourous day’s coverage with Newboy Will Buxton pleading for Pity from David Hobbs for forgetting he was a McLaren F1 Driver... To which ‘Hobbo said Best Pit Reporter? That Westbury Gilette was a pretty good Bloke; Hya!

The Scuderia (Ferrari) has amassed a most impressive grouping of records at Monza, with an unprecedented 17 victories, 18 Pole Positions, 47 Front Row starts and 59 Podiums... As Alberto Ascari scored Ferrari’s maiden triumph in 1951; Phil Hill became the very first American to ever win a Grand Prix, scoring two-thirds of his three F1 career victories at Monza; his first & last, (1960, 1961) and also won the ’61 Belgian GP in an unprecedented Top-4 places sweeping by la Scuderia.

Ironically Hill shares the somber experience of clinching his World Championship at Monza when his teammate was killed with Mario Andretti, as I’ve just noticed they both experienced this upon the same day (Sept 10) 17yrs apart.

John surtees won at Monza for the Tiafosi way back in 1964, while DER TERMINATOR, nee Michael Schumacher has won for the Scuderia five times (nearly 30% of total) with his last victory coming in 2006 on the day he announced his first retirement...

Scuderia Toro Rosso’s Sebastian Buemi aboard the customer Ferrari lump set the day’s fastest time thru the Speed-trap with an impressive 214mph in a “NON F-Duct” configuration, albeit “Jungle Boy,” nee Antonia Pizzonia (2004) holds the Official Top speed at 229.9mph. While JPM, a.k.a. Juan Pablo Montoya (2005) set an unofficial terminal velocity of 231mph!

Pizzonia was substituting for “Monty’s” (JPM) favourite Sparring ‘Pardner “Ralfanso.” (Ralf Schumacher) Blistering the Monza circuit in an FW26 Williams-BMW 3.0 liter V-10 at 369.9kph; SHEISA! Whilst Montoya did his time behind the wheel of a McLaren MP4-20 Mercedes V-10, albeit 2004 was the height of modern F1 machinery’s ‘Aero configuration with the three-liter V-10’s...

Timo Glock’s Virgin blown away Ontrack by The Amazing Hulk, nee Nico Hulkenberg, as Ralph Sheheen commented it looked like the Virgin had the paint sucked right off it! As interestingly both chassis are powered by the Cosworth lump, which left me wondering if this startling performance difference was the difference between Wind Tunnel testing vs. CFD? Or simply due to an established Constructor vs. “Newby,” eh?

(Shoya Tomizawa)

While I’m already impressed by “K-SQUARED,” Kamui Kobayashi’s ONtrack performances, he’s just gotten more respect from Mwah, as it was revealed that the Japanese Piloto was wearing a black armband this weekend in tribute to his recently fallen Countryman, Shoya Tomizawa, the 19yr old motorcycle racer who died at Misano, Italy in the Moto2 race last weekend.

Meanwhile September 10th marks the (double) Anniversary of Mario Andretti clinching his World Championship for Lotus on the same day of the fatal accident that claimed Ronnie Peterson’s life, as it appears that 14 competitors and one Track marshal including, Peterson, Wolfgang von Trips and Alberto Ascari have all perished from accidents at Monza since the modern Formula 1 Championship began in 1950...

Saturday NotesWhile Hispania’s Bruno Senna suffered the harshest day on Friday with repeated Fuel pick-up delivery issues, Force India’s Vitantonio Liuzzi suffered from the same malady first in the FP3 morning practice session before it reared its ugly head again during the ‘Q1 Qualie session. As Liuzzi’s Mercedes lump was giving him a mysterious “false neutral,” repeatedly going into Anti-stall mode for no apparent reason, while Timo Glock had Gearbox issues of his own and will take a 5-spot Grid penalty for changing it. Adding insult to injury was the fact that Glock was blocked by Rookie Vitaly Petrov on his first Flying lap of the Q1 session. To which later the “Rooskie” said he didn’t see either Glock or the Blue flag...

Webber had a second practice problem with a minor fire inside of the airbox on Saturday morning, after he’d been told to “Switch-her-Off!” Friday for a water leak. As Bob Varsha, now back from Los Wages asked why aren’t they using a Fresh engine for Webber? He’s only on his sixth... As only Webber, Pedro De la Rosa and ‘Rubino (Barrichello) were running their engines from Spa with everybody else utilizing Fresh lumps... While it was revealed that the Ferrari Boyz were both on their eighth engines...

Jaime Alguersuari in the other Toro Rosso set the day’s Top numbers thru the Speed trap at the end of the Front straight into Turn 1 at 215.76mph before raising it to 216.2... Although the Spaniard was to wind-up 16th fastest and the last driver to crack the 1:23’s; as Steve Matchett noted that Alguersuari’s second sector time was a 28.7 vs. Massa’s 27.9, as we all know that Top speed doesn’t necessarily equate into fastest lap time...

Felipe Massa had a second “Off” during FP3, but ‘Hobbo had stated the day prior that the diminutive Brazilian would be Ok since he has enormously large Attachments! (Although I think The Kimster had the LARGEST!)

Felipe Massa: “I was completely on the gravel…”
Sunday NotesEntering the race, the Top-5 Drivers slugging it out for the Championship still remained fairly close: P1) L. Hamilton; 182 points; P2) M. Webber; 179; P3) S. Vettel; 151; P4) J. Button; 147; P5) F. Alonso; 141.

As interestingly, it was ‘JENSE in the “Blown” (F-Duct equipped) MP4-25 just barely losing out to Fredrico Suave, a.k.a Fred Alonso, scoring his maiden Scuderia Pole in his debutant Ferrari appearance at Monza, a feat not accomplished since Niki “The Rat” Lauda did so way back in 1974! With Felipe Massa taking a fine third place on the Grid, while the first Red Bull of Mark Webber rolls off from fourth and Lewis Hamilton’s Non-blown McLaren will start fifth, with Sebastian Vettel P6...

“McLaren’s Split-personality”

And thus the race was a somewhat interesting battle between ‘JENSE ‘N Ferdi... As ‘JAGUAR fell afoul of his bullying tactics and went out after colliding with a determined Massa, whilst the two Ferrari’s hounded Button all the way to the stripe with Alonso being victorious after a faster Pitstop, while Vettel’s mysterious engine woes cleared itself and led the second trio past the chequered flag with Rosberg the meat in a Red Bull sandwich, as Webber resumed the points lead...

P1) M. Webber; 187 points
P2) L. Hamilton; 182 pts
P3) F. Alonso; 166 pts
P4) J. Button; 165 pts
P5) S. Vettel; 163 pts

Saturday, September 11, 2010

No Fenders turns 4


Somewhere a very long long longtime ago... I read that the average life of a Blog spans 4yrs, which means I’m not sure if I should be happy or sad to reach said milestone, eh? As four years seems like such an eternity, yet as I’ve said many times before, and will probably repeat in the future – it seems like its gone by so fast, literally in a blink of the eye; CRIKEYS!

Several Racing Blogs have come ‘N gone in that time span, notably Linksheaven and The Unofficial F1 Blog, who were the first to exchange links with me, and Roy Madden (Linksheaven’s Major Domo) was also generous enough to let me Guest Blog upon his now apparently defunct F1 Website.

Meanwhile this year has seen the demise of many Blogs, with My Name is IRL and Full Throttle being the most noteworthy. As Jeffie resigned and Marc sadly passed away; thus in lieu of my traditional Birthday bantering, instead I’d like to say a little more ‘bout Fellow bloggerMarc Boland who unexpectedly passed away about one month ago now. As although I didn’t know Marc, I certainly enjoyed his Quick Wit ‘N Sarcasm, mostly in his almost daily writing’s... Yet he also left me occasional comments and even taught me some trivia ‘bout The Cat in the Hat, a.k.a. Jack Roush... When Marc replied I must be desperate to use his Hydroplane trivia for a story on my Blogsite.

Marc Boland:“What you're starved for content and had to dredge up one of my old posts?”






“Come-on the return of Mr. Ashley Judd has gotta be worth a post or three. (With pictures!)”
Trivia Answer
While being the only one to comment positively about my Hydroplane Scribbling’s – both in my Seafair Sunday and Hydroplane Museum rants, albeit I thought I’d already posted my story way back when, eh? But Marc did comment upon his growing-up in Detroit and being a fan of the “REAL” Thunderboats, i.e.; Bill Muncey’s Atlas Van Lines “Blue Blaster’s” propelled by those magnificent ex-World War II Allison and Rolls Royce Merlin engines; Pre-Turbine era...

Seafair Sunday – 2008 Edition

Yet my absolute favourite of Marc’s was his brandishing the moniker of Littlest Curve to a one Messer (MAD) Max Mosley, who I’ve likened to calling sir maXXum... Y’all know, something to do with Fraulein’s; Oh Never Mind!

Announcing a Max Mosley Fund Drive
Meanwhile, in all of the past 1,460 days, the No Fenders Blogsite has only suffered two major Meltdowns... Which as always, my great Blogmeister Miguel – whose idea it was for me to start this Darn Blasted thingy! Has kept the site alive ‘N well over the years, whilst Artiste Dave created the Great logo that is the site’s Header image. Along with multiple contributions from Danny B, Mary Ellen, Auntie Harriet, “CARPETS,” Mary Jane and No Fenders Cub Assistant Alex...

As I’ve made new friends and enjoyed opportunities that I’d never even dreamed of during the ride whilst poondin’ aways on meeze Keyboards... Even if meeze knucels getz ins duh wayze ocassionally – lqiepxodkqyx thsizlexhe... OOPS! Sorry ‘bout Dat Folks; Hya!

And last but certainly NOT least, a HUMONGOUS Thank You to all of my loyal readers (whoever Y’all are?) for following along with my myriad ‘O Scribblin’s; otherwise, what would be the point of continuing to do this, Eh! As your Comments & your continued reading are always appreciated...

Gratzi,
Tomaso

No Fenders turns 3yrs Old announcement

Friday, September 10, 2010

Pictures from Kentucky

The following pics were sent to me from “CARPETS” of Indiana who attended the Kentucky Indy Car race; Thanxs Dude!

“GREEN-GREEN-GREEN!” (Green flag at Kentucky)

Sarah Fisher Racing – Pre-race (Andy O'Gara, in white shirt; Chief Mechanic (and Sarah’s hubby) Next to him Colleen O’Gara (Andy’s Sister and PR for SFR)

Fans flock to Pippa (Firestone Indy Lights winner Pippa Mann Post-race)

The Mighty CITGO Machine (Milka Duno’s No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda)

What? NO Portland on 2011 ICS Schedule – You’ve gotta be kidding, right?

A Shot rang Out!
Over a lone voice heard Howlin’ madly upon that World Wide Web thingy...
As the mild Howlin’ appears to be comin’ from the Pacific Northwest,
Home of a veritable legendary ‘Reptilian
Known as Sasquatch!

But was it the ever elusive Shaggy monster or simply a Crazed ‘Vurd Botcher Sleepless in Seattle? As perhaps said nucel basher was simply goin’ stir-crazy from thoughts of another long dark bleak ‘N blurry winter with countless Dazes ‘O Precipitation, perhaps?

Did said Word Butcher feel the need to cry for IndyCarz return to Portland after having been squeezed out 3yrs ago, fearing that soon his wordmaker machine would potentially become soaked by a never ending drizzle and perpetually worried ‘bout his Lucas ‘Lectrics giving up the Ghost, while Banana Slugs made happy trails up ‘N down his keyboard...

As yeah, a solitary Shot did indeed resonate over the Hype of the 2011 Indy Car Series Schedule being unfurled at the Milwaukee Fairgrounds... As it was the PoleDaypistolero being fired at 6PM, (was ‘Dat New York, Indy, East Coast or Seattle time?) signaling the end of the Media frenzy. But never-fear Portland International Raceway; Yuhs stills gotz another 11 chances to Qualify for inclusion upon a future Indy Racing League calendar, right?

As in all of this excitement... I’ve forgotten if I fired 5 (blanks) or 6-shots? Whales IndyCar, you’ve got to feel “Rucky,” right?
Whale dooze Yuh feels lucky IndyCar?

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Remembering Jochen Rindt


(Jochen Rindt; Source: grandprix.com)

Although he raced before my time, as I certainly don’t know a lot about him, I do know that he is Formula One’s only Posthumous World Champion, as sadly he died 40yrs ago at this weekend’s F1 venue, Monza Italy, having perished from injuries sustained in the Parabolica during Practice on September 5, 1970...

As I was unaware that it was 40yrs ago his death occurred or that Rindt was running in another of Colin Chapman’s never ending Lotus evoluzione’s... In an attempt to claw back some of the speed the Lotus 72 was lacking to other marques, Chapman devised a non-wing version of the chassis for use at the high speed, low drag Autocorse. As reputedly this enabled the Lotus to gain an extra 800rpm’s...

Jochen Rindt (40yrs after)

Upon Rindt’s tragedy, a very young Brazilian by the name of Emerson Fittipaldi suddenly found himself elevated from third to lead driver at Lotus, in which he dually Won his very first race in the first Non-Rindt Lotus era event at Watkins Glen, ironically the site of Rindt’s debutant Grand Prix victory the year prior... Thus denying Ferrari’s Jacky Ickx the necessary points to overhaul Rindt for that year’s Driver’s title...

I also know from another story simmering in the No Fenders Crockpot that the following year at Monza, “EMMO” drove a “NON” Lotus entry, the black & gold World Wide Racing Lotus 56 for fears of Lotus & Colin Chapman being incarcerated by the Italian Authorities for the preceding year’s tragedy... But those Four-wheelers are a story for another day, eh?

And I also recall from reading the first volume of Gurney’s Eagles, which I treasure as a ‘lil Gem of a book and mention in: Eagle Racing Cars.

When reading Gurney’s Eagles, I ran across some black & white photos of a very young Jochen racing an AAR Eagle Indy Car in the USAC Championship, the No. 48 I believe? As I wasn’t aware that Messer Rindt had raced in two Indy 500’s (1967-68) before reading this book way back when, albeit his second Indy 500 start was behind the keyboard of a Repco-Brabham...

(1965 Ferrari 250LM - Photo courtesy of CARPETS)

Thus I suppose it was somewhat Karmic? Err, symbiotic that I’d get to view the 1965 24 Heurs du Mans winning Ferrari upon my recent visit to one of my favourite haunts; the IMS Hall of Fame museum... Which egads! They’ve raised the price all the way from $3.00 to $5.00... Although any time at the museum is way better than a movie for Mwah!

As it seems very odd that I was staring at the last Ferrari to ever win the French classic overall, some 45yrs ago, as Jochen Rindt teamed with American Masten Gregory to pilot the North American Racing Teams (NART) Ferrari 250LM to victory over the fast improving Ford GT40’s. As ironically Messer Gregory had been hired to drive the Ford at Circuit de la Sarthe the year prior...

While I’ve also discovered that the Kansas City native was the very first American to stand on the Grand Prix Podium when he scored an impressive third place finish in the 1957 Monaco GP, making his F1 debut for the Privateer Scuderia Centro Sud Faction behind the wheel of a customer Maserati 250F.

Gregory also contested the 1965 Indy 500 for his step-father George Bryant and was running fifth before retiring after 59 laps with Oil Pressure maladies. He died from an unexpected Heart-attack at the tender age of 53 in 1985...

What Team Orders?

Once again the Scuderia has gotten off Scott free... Whale Otay, I’m certain they’re willing to pay the $100,000 fine for Ferdi-the-Putzes “Engineered” victory at Hockenheim this year...

Not enough proof against Ferrari – Todt

The Lotus flower blooms

Its interesting to me how the Lotus nameplate has been reborn into Formula 1 this season and how they continue to stoke the fires ‘O yesteryear with the continued Team Lotus build-up... As I still can’t decide on whether or not to purchase one of Minichamps 1:18 Lotus 78 Diecasts... Which I assume is part of the brand rebuilding exercise, eh?

The Forgotten Lotus room

And that’s not including the Lotus KV Racing Technology Indy Car that ex-Formula 1 Piloto Takuma Sato is driving this year, albeit having DNF’ed 9-times this season, as I believe that Rookie-of-the-Year would have to be a toss-up between Baguette “N “Simona-Simona...” Uhm? Did somebody say Sandwiches? As I was referring to Bertrand Baguette and Simona de Silvestro respectively, who both seem to be outshining the Japanese Grand Prix driver at the moment.

Then there was the debut of the Lotus GT4 at Laguna Seca during what will always be the Monterey Historics to Mwah, where ex-CART Champion Jimmy Vasser, “Taku-san” (Sato) and Johnny Mowlem debuted the car by running multiple demonstration laps.

Vasser and Sato join Monterey festivities

And that’s not to mention the new Customer F1 Chassis for the wealthy, as a very lucky 25 persons will have the opportunity to own their own Lotus F1 Chassis.

Lotus unveils ‘F1 car’ for the wealthy fan

And lastly, as this weekend’s Italian GP approaches, I’ve just noticed that the Team is billing it as its One-year Anniversary...

Lotus looking forward to one year anniversary at Monza

Senna movie in the Pipeline

Just recently stumbled across this... As apparently a brand new movie about the Life ‘N Times of Triple F1 World Champion Ayrton Senna is in the process of being completed and will reportedly be released sometime early next year...

First View of Senna Movie trailer

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Hey IndyCar – I think Portland’s still available...


So here it is - another Labour Day weekend having just concluded... Which means that the Twenty-ten Indy Car season is almost over, and I haveda say, in a sorta weird, twisted kinda way... I’m finding myself chuckling louder ‘N louder over how members of the Bloggaratzi are Frothing over the loss of certain Oval tracks ‘N IndyCar venues in general... And the slighting of Open Wheels versus that bloated 800lb Gorilla named RASSCAR...

NO, the part that’s killing me the MOST is all of this blather ‘bout needing to go to tracks that aren’t ISC (or SMI) owned, where they put on a good show and are wanted... Hmm? Can Y’all say Portland? As I know a one Mr. Carpets will be bustin’ out the Kleenex upon reading this post... As I still just DON’T get it???

Last time I checked, a few Fortune 500 Companies named Boeing, Microsoft, Nordstroms, Starbucks and Vulcan Ventures were still doing business in Washington, not to mention the Bon Marche being bought out by some entity named Macy’s; Hmm? Don’t they sell some brand called IZOD there? while I think some Company named Nike was born in Oregon?

And in case your unaware of what Vulcan Ventures is, it’s the Venture platform of a one Messer Paul Allen, who was originally the other half of some ‘lil computing company named Microsoft and Y’all know who – Bill Gates, one of the richest Gentlemen in the world is, right? Not to mention how Mr. Allen bought out the all conquering ticketing entity I fondly call RIP-OFFMeister... Officially known as Ticketmaster, who I was forced to purchase my Edmonton tickets thru. (Complete with exorbitant Service Fees!) And Oh-by-the-Way, Messer Allen owns some Professional Sports Teams known as the Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trailblazers...

But instead, the Indy Racing League continues to focus upon the Midwest and East coast, trying to fit its product into whatever venue will hopefully seat the most people (Butt’s) and NOT necessarily provide a good race, which I believe is known as Entertainment dollars...

Thus, I still bristle over Mark James comments about how I as a loyal Fan of Open Wheel Racing need to do MORE then just listen ‘N watch the Indy Car races... But also need to be attending them, talking positively ‘bout them and buying my favourite Drivers merchandise ‘N related Advertising products; Whiskey-Tango-Foxtrot? What was that all about Mr. Gravelly? As this comment came during one of the very FEW Indy Lights races I was able to successfully tune-in via the pathetic indycar.com Webcasts! I mean SHEISA! Indycar.com CANNOT even list ALL of the Indy Lights Radio Broadcast times on its website? NOT to mention the LACK of any Television coverage... Which if it does ever come back, and then it would be nice if they DON’T tell us who the winner is before the tape delayed broadcast, eh? But I digress...

Now, I’m NOT proclaiming that Portland is the BESTEST natural terrain Permanent Road course in North America, nor will I attempt to procostinate who is, although I’d haveda hard time picking between Road America and Watkins Glen... But hey Indy Racing League... Do you remember Kevin Costner’s comments in Field of Dreams? If you build it, they’ll come... As Gee Wally, Err Randy & Terry; Portland International Raceway is ALREADY BUILT! Accessible via the major Highway (I-5) with the entire necessary infrastructure already completed... And Oh My Gawd... It’s even steeped in a rich Open Wheel Racing history, albeit CART and Champ Car... NOT the IRL; Tisk-Tisk! And it’s had some pretty good finishes too; just ask Little Al, Mario & Michael Andretti, Gil De Ferran and Martin Brundle just to name a few...

As for going to races, thanks to IndyCarz current philosophy, the three nearest venues are Edmonton, Canada, Long Beach and Sonoma; both in California, while last time I checked... ‘Los Wages is even further away – and I seriously doubt I’ll be going to any stinkin’ Oval races there! Whilst the first three venues all haveda be at least a minimum of 800-1,000+ miles away; not to mention ‘Juan includes running the Border Gauntlet... Yet all I still hear is never ending prattle ‘bout going back to Phoenix and Milwaukee and Boo-Hoo-Hoo other Midwest venues are disappearing...

I mean; So What! If the precious ICS schedule AIN’T perfectly symmetrical between Ovals “N Twisties, while I get the gist of going abroad to China ‘N Australia... As can you say Greenbacks? While I’m all in favour of Australia rightfully returning to Indy Cars, but perhaps Y’all will wanna check how the Chinese business model worked out with CART/Champ Car, eh? I mean, why not go back to Mexico City instead? As I think its one Helluva lot closer and could become a lucrative market also, right? I mean just ask those Fans affectionately named the Guacamole Heads; Ariva-Ariva-Ariva!

So I won’t hold my breath any longer over Indy Car ever coming back to the Pacific Northwest, as I’m quite certain it will once again be left off the riveting 2011 Indy Car Schedule this Friday... Especially since we’ve got plenty of other choices here... As I find it pretty entertaining how various venues keep getting shuffled due to conflicting dates with RASSCAR... As I’m pretty certain if Portland did miraculously return, it wouldn’t get its traditional Father’s Day date, but a Mid-August “Double Header” with Sonoma would work nicely, while my “Perfect” Double Header would see the Indy Cars run with the American Le Mans Series... Or GASP! Imagine those RASSCAR ‘Pickem-up Trucks Bangin “N Beatin on a Road course... Oh Never Mind!

As can Y’all hardly wait to stay up into the wee hours to catch another riveting race around the Twin Moons ‘O Motegi? Hey, at least Mister Chrome Horn will be there, allegedly due to the helping hands of his Battleing SuperCarz Co-Host Tanner Foust; Aye Karumba!

May be IndyCar should Stay Away from the Northwest After all...

And I know for certain Vancouver, BC will NOT be getting a race, as they used to have a great little Street Circuit event running around BC Place on Labour Day weekend, before CART/Champ Car moved that date to Denver...

Meanwhile, I wonder what the attendance figures for Kentucky will be? As hopefully JP will have a favourable report after his latest trek to the Bourbon State, which makes it kinda funny to think how Eddie Carpenter will be running the Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Drinks car there! Then again if the note I just received regarding Hotel fees being overinflated from $189 per night to a WHOPPING $489.00 per night is any indication of how Motorsports Fans are being GOUGED!!! Then good luck Indy Car with increasing attendance...

Evaluating the Commitment of a New Partner