Monday, December 18, 2023

The 2023 IndyCar Golden Tailpipe Awards edition, Positions 6-10

Watch out Santa, Mr. Zackery Brown’s handing out lawsuits this year…


As Rock ‘N Roll Kiddoes’, Uhm, Fasten Your Seatbelts for Another Bumpy ride! As it’s time for another rendition of Tomaso’s wacky Year ender Awards that Everyone just Absolutely Craves, Righto?



6. Most Improved Driver of the Year

Winner: Kyle Kirkwood

Otay, this one seemed simple. Even if you’d obviously expected the driver Marshal Pruett enjoys calling Kirk Kirkwood to improve. As it almost seems unfair to even consider Kyle’s rookie season at A.J. Foyt Enterprises…


As the Road to Indy Wunderkind’ had a fairly miserable maiden IndyCar season campaign, mostly due to trying to outperform in the Foyt entry. Although Kirkwood made plenty of rookie mistakes Himself too. With a single Top-10 finish at Long Beach being His best result.


Returning to Andretti Autosport after a lowly P24 Overall ranking at Foyt. Obviously Mikey a’ would have been saying “Houston, we’ve got a Problem!” If Kirkwood didn’t finish above that this season.


As we All know, Kirkwood had a breakout season by ultimately claiming two wins enroute to 11th Overall this year. Claiming His maiden IndyCar w’ in just the season’s third race at Long Beach from Pole position!


As Kirkwood was seemingly untouchable at Long Beach, while it was the only race I recall missing? When Kirkwood claimed His second win at Nashville. In surely what was another Crash-fest, Eh?


As Kirkwood’s two wins, ironically His only podium finishes help net Him 13 places in the points standings this season…


7. Most Disappointing Driver of the Year

Winner: Romain Grosjean

Perhaps I’m just Piling On the Frenchman? But for Romain’s second season at Andretti Autosport looking so promising. Even having scribbled a No Fenders story titled Can Romain Grosjean Win at Indianapolis? Which He failed to do, with His two early season runner-up finishes being His High water mark…


As we All know, Grosjean’s season, and temper simply imploded! With the Camera’s Eye capturing His Heated confrontation with the team on Pitlane!


As Romain’s implosion reportedly stems due to having signed a contract extension that Mikey A’ refused to sign, with the Frenchman having since filed for Arbitration.


As I’m sure we’ll All be waiting to see how long before the Honeymoon ends at His latest employer Juncos Hollinger Racing…


Although after I finished scribblin’ this. I realized that Colton Herta could have also easily won this dubious Honor…


8. Comeback Driver of The Year

Winner: Graham Rahal

Chose Graham simply on the merits of His and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s recovery following their Horrible Indianapolis 500 outing!


Nah, won’t scribble about the ironies of RLLR teammate Katherine Legge’s practice accident getting Graham back into the race. Instead, Yuhs just have to be impressed how Graham and the team put their Heads down and rebounded afterwards.


As it’s been an Uber’ long time since I’ve rooted so emphatically for Graham to win! After coming Oh, so close at the August Indy GP road course race behind Scott Dixon!


Not to mention Graham claiming two Pole positions, the first coming some four-plus years since His last. While Christian Lundgaard gave RLLR it’s first IndyCar victory in some three years at Toronto.


9. “Big Boyz Pants” Award

Winner: Jack Harvey

You have to feel for this likeable, most amiable Englishman, who simply never could quite “Switch On” after the arrival of Helio Castroneves to His former team Meyer Shank Racing. Especially after Hulio

‘ won some ‘lil ‘Ol Oval race…


As we’ll never know why things went so terribly Pear-shaped for Harvey during His two seasons at RLLR? But I tremendously enjoyed His “Stiff Upper lip”, Grit and Determination at Mother Speedway this May.


As I believe Harvey coined it the Hunger Games for RLLR’s miserable qualifying performances. And I have to say that I was emphatically rootin’ for Jack, Not Bloody Nige! Harvey to do the unthinkable and Bump esteemed team leader Graham Rahal from the field on the 30th anniversary of His father Bobby being Bumped!


For which Y’all already know the answer. As Harvey found a miraculous few miles per hour of speed that had eluded Him All weekend long. Bumping His way into the field as Graham sat helplessly watching from His cockpit on the Pitlane, in what I thought was a truly gritty performance by Harvey!


As the Pole Shootout really didn’t matter to Mwah afterwards…


10. Rookie of The Year

Winner: Augustin Canapino

Although Marcus Armstrong, running only the “Twisties” portion of the calendar won the IndyCar Rookie Of the Year title. Driving for the vastly superior Chip Ganassi Racing, you’d have expected the Kiwi’ to do so…


Thus my choice for Augustin was easy. Since the Argentinian Touring Car Multi-times Champion had never raced in a Single Seater. Nor raced on an Oval! And Hell also had to learn English to boot.


So overall I was very impressed by Canapino’s On-track performance. Yet unfortunately I’ve considerably soured upon Canapino for allowing and encouraging His Argentine Fanbase to so Disgustedly Attack Callum Ilott. Not once, but twice during the season!


Not to mention Riccardo Juncos decidedly partisan backing of Canapino and His Fans. Along with giving Ilott a raw deal by stringing Him along! Leaves me completely turned Off upon Juncos Hollinger Racing and Canapino!




As I really cannot wait to see how long and what Happens when Romain Grosjean collides with Canapino next year!