Unfiltered Race Notes… Shorted from the Finale Edition

Welp, looks like we got preempted for stupid napcar. I saw a quick shot of Dixon and another shot of Penske. And we’re watching caution laps click off in Vegas. Ridiculous. 

Now I think we are literally watching parked napcars while we are missing the start of Sonoma. 

Yes. We missed the start. 

GREEN

for the last race of the season. Glad NBCSN could bounce the end of the napcar race to cnbc… Viewing definitely NOT enhanced as an indycar fan. 

I cannot believe we were forced to miss the start of the final race of the season. 

No idea what lap we are on but The Truth is out out out of contention. Looks like he lost a front wing and tire on the start by hitting Marco. For shame. 

2

Ok. 

UGH I JUST REALIZED WE WILL HAVE TO GO BACK TO NAPCAR SOON

Ok ok ok. Just enjoy the racing…

3

Talk of Rossi getting a penalty for short cutting the course on his way back to the its. I hope not. That would really be unfortunate. If Rossi can claw this back man. 

How is Marco doing so well?

Confirmation that we will lose more race to stupid napcar. 

6

Very clear that Dixon is going to circulate in P2 for the rest of the race. I don’t blame him one but. However, this really locks the win in for RHR. 

Obviously I don’t have CNBC recording. Bullshit that the season finale is what is getting bumped and not the regular ol taxi cab race. 

17

Back to indycar.

Sigh. This is frustrating. 

First stops underway?

I have no idea. 

Diffey confirms. Ok Let’s see if we can find some rhythm to this race. 

18

OH NO NEWGARDEN STALLS THE CAR. What an odd afternoon we are having so far. 

I will take this final opportunity to complain that we run such a stupid layout of this phenomenal race track. I have always wished that we could race all the way into the hairpin. I don’t want to hear that BS about safety when we roll into Indy T1 at 240+. Also we should have run the true esses section. This layout has always been neutered and I say good riddance to this stupid Sonoma layout. 

That feels better. 

In case anyone was confused: #TeamDIxon

But I’m also #TeamGoodRace…

25

Mike Hull sounds very relaxed. I’m sure Dixon is relaxed. I bet this is one of the easier races they have ever raced. Quite the cruise the the championship. But we all know something crazy can happen. This is why we race them!

26

Sato out with an engine failure. A pretty up and down year for SATO. He will be back next year and I cannot wait to see him race again. I hope he gets a few years with RLLR. Of course he won the 500 with Andretti, but I feel if he could get a few years here he could finally find that constancy he has always lacked. 

29

I wonder what RHR feels about all of this. He obviously knows no one is going to challenge him. What is the mere level on a day like this. 

31

Video from Wickens is shocking. He looks emaciated. He also looks like a paraplegic who had been propped up in bed. Sigh. Hopefully all ends well. 

33

Rossi has found Dixon. Albeit a lap down, but he has found his prey. 

A pass for Rossi would be as good as a win at this point. I bet he won’t be able to touch Dixon. 

36

The Rahal paint job is HOT. I like the skewed sided logo. 

Dixon let’s Rossi through at the end of the drag strip. I’m sure Dixon did not want Rossi to rear end him in a moment of red mist. 

Woooow replay shows Dixon saved his race by bowing out of a back marker fight. That was amazing racetrack vision. 

39

Rossi into the dirt trying to get around RHR. What a wanker. He is simply pushing too hard to make up for already pushing too hard at the start. If he keeps this up, he will be pushing too hard right into the wall. 

43

There is good racing going on throughout the field. I wonder how conducive to racing Laguna Seca will be. I’m honestly a bit worried. But indycar has been able to race at some tight places so we will see. 

44

—YELLOW—

Rahal stopped on track at the end of the drag strip. 

Rossi is on the lead lap. 

Hmm, that’s 2 RLLR cars out with engine issues…

Overhead view. They would be going SO FAST if they raced the true track. It would take away a passing zone, but I always felt it would also create an even better opportunity at the hairpin. Oh well. 

Rossi in for fuel and tires. Good move. Maybe we will see some more yellow. We may yet have a race on our hands!

—GREEN—

50

Shenanigans deep in the field. OMG I CANNOT BELIEVE THERE ISN”T ANY CARBON FIBER!!

Clean. 

Rossi slicing through the field. 

Dangerously slicing through the field. I’m ok with that. 

52

Rossi is crushing this thing. 

53

So much has happened that I cannot possibly write about it. Awesome and crazy. Yay indycar. 

I will say Hinch definitely deserves to see his spot after getting muscled into the grass. The officiating has been on point today. 

54

TK waves Rossi through. Most good. 

55

Looks like Jones does as well. That is the move of a championship teammate that does not have the job next year. 

59

I’ve never rooted for Rossi so hard. I want to see this become a race!!

61

Dixon in to cover the Rossi move. Good call. No reason not to. The championship is in the drivers hands now. 

62

Marco lets Rossi through. It almost seems like the whole field is letting Rossi through. 

65

Rossi and Dixon are almost in the same shot. That is ridiculous. Rossi is a future champion. Maybe not this year but very very soon. 

It’s also good to know that Andretti can really set up a car, they just haven’t had the talent to utilize the equipment. Although we know Rossi is a technical driver, I’m sure he is the set up king on that team. That’s always how they have kind of rolled though. One setup guy. If he’s doing well then the team is doing well. Very similar to what is happening today. 

Diffey: “RHR is still being pursued by DIxon.” Personally, I wouldn’t say this is a pursuit. 

67

Ride along with Dixon. Savor the awesomeness. Six months until St. Pete…

But yes, if they took the esses into the full hairpin these guys would be FLYING. 

68

Rossi radio: TURN UP THE BOOST. Hell yes. No way he will catch Dixon, but his journey today has been nothing short of amazing. 

70

The booth is speaking about Pietro Fittipaldi and it is getting me so pumped for the future of indycar. There are some fast young guns waiting in the wings. And the last class of young guns are really coming into their own. I think there are reports of like 25 cars scheduled for next year as well. Indycar is on the rise it seems. 

75

Clicking the laps off. I can imagine many will start to call Dixon the GOAT. Although he is the best driver of the modern era HANDS DOWN, it’s hard to claim GOAT for a sport that sans over 100 years. 

Still though #TeamDixon

76

O’ward… speaking of young guns. First race ever qualifying in the top 6 and looking to finish in the top 10. As a young rookie you really can’t ask for more than that.

78

That Harvey car is hot. Possibly my favorite paint job of the year. 

More young guns. Jordan King and Zach Veach. The rookie class is stacked this year. 

81

Rossi slowly falling into the clutches of Bourdais. Rossi has had an absolutely amazing season. I cannot wait to see what he can do in coming years. I really hope he doesn’t bolt to ‘greener pastures’. F1 or otherwise. I also want to root against him for years to come. 

—WHITE FLAG—

Looks like RHR will be able to avoid mixing it up with lapped traffic. I’m sure no one is happier than he is. 

—CHECKERS—

RHR for the win. Dixon for the championship. 

Rossi out of gas. Amazing finish to an amazing season. 

Chip Ganassi literally scares me. But people who drink the blood of the young usually do. Congratulations. 

Is RHR just chopped liver? We haven’t even seen him since ‘winning’ the ‘race’. Did he really even win? 

We get to watch the awkward in car congrats and hat dance twice? 

Jan is making me uncomfortable. Dude, you need to give Dixon some room and time to celebrate with his family. I know I know. TV blah blah blah… Still ridiculous. Dixon was literally thanking everyone on his team personally and Jan steps in before he can give the final hug. Ridic. 

Who is that New Zealand flag waving chap standing next to the firechicken?

Interview with Rossi before RHR? This is pretty bad. What the hell is NBCSN doing today? 

Also I would love to see a replay of the start. Preferably from before the pole sitter hits the hairpin. 

Video of Hunter-Reay getting out of the car with a promise to talk to him next before the commercial break. 

Aaaaaaand we come back to futball. Sign. I see where indycar falls in the NBC properties hierarchy. Lame AF

I guess that is that. Pretty anti climactic if I have to say so. Not impressed with NBCSN at all today. I pray 2019 will treat us better because even having a stellar year of broadcasting, if this is how you treat us during the season finale, what hope do we really even have?

2018 was a wild ride. Thanks for enjoying it with me!!

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… The Finish Was Worth The Race Edition

We are LIVE TONIGHT!!! Which also means the exciting addition of live radio to the mix!!

#GetWellWickens

I hope he comes back. I want him to win more races and even a few championships. Sometimes I hate that this form of racing is so razor edge. Too many drivers are scared to take the oval racing plunge. Not that I blame them though…

I know that Hinch won a race this year and is a consistent top 5 performer, but the addition of Wickens has really shown how far Hinch has to go. I always put his inconsistencies down to racing for SPM, but they clearly have their shop in order. 

What cha cookin is still terrible. Pay the bills. $$$

The grandstands look great! Not as good as last year, but good nonetheless!

I went last year but not this year. Can’t make it to everything every year. However, I firmly believe that each track needs to be able to survive on their own in their own market. You can’t pile these races on in the midwest and expect all the Indianapolis based fans to support them. 

With that said, I hope I can make it to this AND Mid-Ohio next year. I’ve been to both and really really enjoyed both experiences. 

Ok command. That John Bommarito guy kind of creeps me out. 

—GREEN—

—YELLOW—

Bourdais with massive front right damage. What a few tough weeks for indycar oval racing. Onboard with Veach shows that Boudrias just lost it. For a guy who lapped the entire field at Milwaukee a few years ago, this is a pretty surprising outcome. 

—GREEN—

8

Dixon leading. hopefully we can get into a grove tonight and get some good green flag racing. 

10

Of course Rossi is looking AMAZING tonight, but at least he has to work up to the front. 

12

Bourdais takes the blame. He knows. Weird crash tonight. 

18

Lock step… I hope once these tires start to wear we get some excitement. 

20

Rossi chasing Power is the closest race we have on track. 

22

Rossi already thinking about fuel savings. 

Corroborated with the radio as his engineer reminded him to watch his fuel number. 

28

Because I am live I am being forced to consume a you-know-what-itarian commercial… Sigh…

35

Kevin Lee reporting on the 10. Saying Felix Rosenqvist will be in the car next year. I think that is an upgrade but I feel bad for Dixon. He is racing on what amounts to a one car team. Even with his massive points lead, that has got to be frustrating. 

40

Dixon is pulling away from Power. Through traffic. Wow. Will we see another beat down this week? I notice that in some/most races I call the race through and finished like a 1/4 of the way through only to say how exciting it is at the end. This is why we race!

Andretti is complain-y on the radio. I love him. 

49 

BOOM ROSSI ON NEWGARDEN!

I’ll root for The Truth if it means seeing some action. LET’S GO!!

56

…Gaining on Power.

Also, If he can catch and pass Dixon at any point tonight we will have a championship race as well. 

Begrudgingly #TeamRossi JUST FOR TONIGHT

59

First stops underway. 

It did not look like there was too much tire drop off. That could make for an interesting evening. 

65

Power radio: I just got up into the marbles. 

Rossi radio: Stay with Will and hit your fuel number or better. 

Can Rossi catch and pass these guys while hitting a fuel number?!

77

Ed Carpenter. Where do I start? Should you even race next year? You won pole at Indy but you are just so enigmatic.

82

Through the field. Boo. I thought the segment was dead.

88

Chaves is up to 11th. I wonder if that his on his own merit or what Daly was able to bring to the team.

94

Has there been any actual racing?

The all the radios are basically silent save for splits and handling updates. 

100

The top three are close on track but it just doesn’t seem like they will be able to race. Especially if we are transitioning from a 4 stop to a 3 stop race. 

104

Brian Barnhart always looks like he is so confused when he is being interviewed.

107

Interesting. Chaves is going to take one full turn of the left and one half turn on the right. I have aways wondered if staggered downforce is ever used! Cool. 

Oh No! Chaves has something broken! like 3 laps after he stopped for fuel. Radio says nothing is wrong but Chaves really thinks something is broken. I’ll continue to listen. Says the steering is sloppy.

118

2nd round of stops underway. 

POWER OUTSIDE OF DIXON FOR THE LEAD!!!!

No. And he loses multiple places. Attempting a pass almost isn’t even worth it. 

129

Ok. It looks like Newgarden attempted to pass Power and got into the marbles and lost a ton of speed as well. 

Is a pass attempt worth that? These guys have to stop trying outside passes. It will be all about the low move if anything is going to happen. 

140

Log jam.

Sato around Hinch and then Hinch into the marbles and proceeds to lose like 5 more soots. 

Lame.

146

Holy hell Rossi almost passes Power and gets SO CLOSE to walling it. Amazing car control and loses 2 places. Holy crap man. 

I repeat. Passing is not worth it. At least passing on the outside. 

The race winning move will be an inside move. 

150

BOOM! Power around Dixon ON THE INSIDE!!!

Excellent move!

154

There is definitely action happening right now. The lapped cars are playing a huge part in the on track strategy tonight. 

162

Alright, we are blessed with a KICK ASS firestone commercial. Some of the best around! If there were more high quality indycar commercials I would watch more of them. 

166

Kimball brushes the wall and we stay green. Cool. 

This is why you never pick Kimball. 

I really respect indycar race control this year. We have stayed green in many situations the would have seen a yellow in the near past. Let them race. No matter now processional or far apart they get, we deserve to see them race week in and out as many green flag laps as possible. 

—YELLOW—

174

RHR loses power. again. What the hell man? He has the worst luck. 

He has stopped in the middle of pit lane to force the safety team to pull him down pit lane to his box. Genius. 

177

Sweepers. I agree. This insanity has to stop. If I was an engineer I would highly suggest to my driver to not attempt a pass before this. Once the track is swept I would have no problem trying it again. 

—GREEN—

184

Clean restart. Power in a commanding lead. Will anyone be able to do anything?

187

Dixon radio: Hitting that number is impossible. Then it will either be a splash or a yellow (!)

192

I have done the math and i agree. No one will be able to make it. We should see some hard and close racing for the rest of the night. 

197

Jones with his third big pass in almost as many laps and has parked himself right behind Dixon. Lets see what he does. 

203

Pagenaud fails to pass Rossi on the outside, fails and what looks like to me, blocks spigot from making his own pass. 

211

It seems like some of these guys are really really trying to save and make it. I have no idea how they think that will happen. Not only does it seem ridiculous, but Rossi in particular is losing a ton of places. Wishing and hoping for extra fuel in the tank?

221

Yes, Will Power is CRUSHING the field. 

Rahal in fuel saving as well. 

223

Now we are really seeing the disparate strategies and the action on track is really showing it. 

Worth noting that the track may be taking rubber now instead of allowing it to flake and peel off. It can take some time to wear a groove into a freshly rained upon track and I think that may be what we are seeing now. 

229

Rossi goes a lap down. Will he be able to make it?!

Onboard with him and it really sounds and feel

POWER ON PIT LANE FOR A SPLASH!

Holy CRAP!!

233

Wow Rossi ahead of Power but the comes out right behind with a full rich engine. No problem. 

238

Dixons crew is walking out. This is it… Excruciating. 

It’s amazing how different the end of this race is from where we started.

240

Can Dixon hunt down Rossi?

I say no. 

243

I think this thing is about toasted.

248

—CHECKERS—

POWER

Amazing end to a really boring race. That was a most excellently timed yellow flag. Saved. The. Race. It would have been nice to see the race play out naturally but the yellow really changed the face of the race. 

Will Power. The oval master. 

Holy hell what a finish! Next week we get to go back to historic Portland International Raceway! I can’t wait to see you guys there. Thanks for reading!

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… I Don’t Want to Test That Fence Edition

Hello and welcome back! This week we are heading straight into the action!!

Aaaand we cut immediately to a stinking retrospective about Rossi. Booooo. What a way to start a broadcast. (Rossi is an amazing racer and I am so glad indycar has him as an asset, however he irritates me. And rooting against people is as big a part of motorsport as rooting for people. I don’t always agree with Miller, but hate is good. In this case. You always need someone to sneer at on track. It’s also important for that black hat to be skilled, which Rossi undoubtedly is. He is a much better object of my snark than Rahal, who only for one year could really be a black hat. Rossi = The Truth.)

With all of that said I will absolutely skip his interview…

Wow. Will Power the 500 mile specialist. That is crazy to think about. 

Command was not done in a two-seater and that guy could not have been more milk toast. Absolutely soulless. 

Veach as a dark horse?! I’m no Jan, but I have a hard time believing that. 

—GREEN—

—YELLOW—

Spigot immediately spins with Rahal having front wing damage. Amateur hour. Replay shows Rahal obviously running over Spigot. Dammit Rahal. This is why I don’t like you. You’re bad and you do stupid things. Rahal CLEARLY jumps the start. 

Looks like Spigot is out. This is infuriating. Rahal needs to be held for a few laps so his race is really truly ruined. 

5

Why are we still circulating under yellow?

6

The panic in the Rahal pit is delicious. 

7

—GREEN—

Wickens and Rossi heading to the front. Obviously. 

—YELLOW—

Wickens into the catch fence.

—RED—

Scared. Really hoping Wickens is OK. Hinch looks hurt. 

Not a lot of frantic movement around the Wickens car which makes me feel better. It doesn’t have that saving a life feel to it. 

Driver out of the car. Catch fence damage. This is going to be a while No update on Wickens or Hinch. 

Awake and Alert. Excellent. 

Pietro sounds bruised but ok too. Thank goodness. 

Rahal MAJORLY deflecting. Lame. Take responsibility. 

Power defending his start. He is so well spoken now days. He could be a contender for my new favorite driver soon. 

Hinch has been cleared. Another big sigh. 

Drivers back in the cars. 

Engines started and the grandstands are not empty. Let’s do this thing. 

—YELLOW—

10

Lots of cars getting fixed in the pits. 

There will be like 7 cars on the lead lap once this thing gets going. And it’s lap 10. This could be a long afternoon. 

—GREEN—

12

Rossi back to the front. 

These guys better give each other some room for a few laps. 

15

Ok, 14 cars on the lead lap. 

16

Daly on screen. Sooooo is anyone else impressed with Daly? I know who I would hire next year. Awkward. 

17

Kanaan in the pits with no power. I picked him this week. Obviously. On the plus side i didn’t lose anyone in the crash. 

22

No passes. I bet we see a through the field this race. Maybe two. After everything that has happened I imagine the action and therefore the notes will be a little thin this week. I can’t imagine we’ll see any real racing until 125 or less to go. 

29

TK officially out. Sad face. 

31

Onboard with Dixon. He looks to literally be out there alone. 

40

20% through and all is quiet. 

Stops happening and Rossi is making this race a stinker. I’m pretty sure his lead has grown across the pit exchange. I want to know what his secret sauce is. In fairness, I’m sure the rest of the field is wondering the same thing. 

48

“Onboard with Graham Rahal’s Honda. He is three laps down.” This is what I like to come back from break hearing. 

50

Right on for the race fans in Pocono. The stands still look rocking right now. I bet this race has great ambiance. 

53

11 cars on the lead lap with only 15 currently running. A regular 25 car field would be really nice on days like this. 

54

I see Zach Veach has been demoted to his poo car once again. 

63

Rossi has a 12 second lead. What is that like 1/4 or a 1/3 of a lap? Ridiculous. 

Honestly, I really hope Rossi stays in indycar. I hate to lose our young guns to F1 or NASCAR and I feel like Rossi and Newgarden could be in danger. I love that Rossi is so good. We need him and Newgarden and Wickens and Hinch to keep winning and we need the next new young gun to keep adding to the depth. 

68

Kanaan in the booth. Cool. I hope he hangs out for a while. 

69

Veach and Bourdais are actually racing. 

Dixon in. This seems early. He had some fuel in hand over the last stint. Bell picks up on it and says he short filled this time. Such an interesting strategy! I’m very excited to see how this plays out!

71

Marco and Dixon racing. Dixon out ahead of Newgarden shows just how much track position he exchanged for those few laps of fuel. 

73

More stops. There is so much concrete here. How do you choose the fastest or best line out of the pits when there is approximately 4 acres of driving surface to choose from. 

81

Dixon is less than a second behind Andretti and Bourdais a second behind Newgarden. Buckle up we could have some racing yet to see. 

84

Kanaan is being pretty open about Alonso’s plans for next year. This is a really fortuitous development in this otherwise very quiet race. Say what you will about TK, but he gives a really good color interview. 

93

They’re showing the actual on track gap from Rossi to Power and it is HUGE! Sure. There’s always a hope that lapped traffic will play into the chasing drivers hands, but this is basically an ocean. And once things shake back out it’s not like the handling is going to go away that much for Rossi. 

96

Down to 4 seconds. I am not on the edge of my seat. 

100

Stops underway. 

The pit lane here at Pocono is not level. At all. I can see the wave, I wonder what it feels like in the car. 

103

This race has really been contested in the pits. With so few cars on track it’s much easier to keep track of everything and see how seconds in the pits translates to feet on the racetrack.

105

This pitstop exchange has been the most exciting thing of the race. Dixon racing Andretti and Rossi racing Power and Chilton. There is some really hairy racing going on right now. I hope they can stay close and race? He says optimistically.   

107

WOW The Rossi crew left a hose out for Power to run over. Interesting twist. 

Regardless of what happens those two are the closes they have been all day. It has taken hundreds of miles for Power to claw back 7 seconds on track. 

114

Sounds like Bourdais was not happy with the fence repair. I totally agree with him. I do not believe that the repaired section of fence is as strong or safe as the original section. They had to replace a main support pole in that section and it looked sketchy as hell. I know we were red for two hours, but do we need to get the races started at any cost? 

117

Warnings all around for Rossi and Power. Fair enough. 

119

Wasn’t Pocono missing a back straight fence until just a few years ago? One of the many reasons why indycar couldn’t come I think. 

120

Woah, 1.5 second gap up front. That was fast! And Rossi is backed up behind Pagenaud…

126

I wonder how many people are left in the grandstands.

128

Yea, Zach Veach isn’t too bad. I know I make fun of him, but that kid has some chops as well. Continuing the previous discussion about young guns, Veach has been a nice addition. Even if he drives a poo car sometimes. 

131

Need more power. Engine power. 

132

Alright, Pagenaud is out of the way. How long will it take Rossi to drive away from Power? 

136

Veach in with Newgarden. Booth makes the Penske vs Andretti comment. Andretti has really stepped their game up. It makes me wonder if this recent success is due to the addition of Rossi. It has always felt that Andretti needed a setup guy to hoist the team to success and I do not believe that RHR is that man. Maybe even Veach has added to the overall success. We also know Marco isn’t giving the team squat in terms of setup information. 

137

Power in and out… Ahead of Rossi! Andretti fails themselves in the pits again! Holy crap I cannot believe Power has clawed this lead back. 

Will Power. The 500 mile king. Wow. 

145

Hmf. As we were headed to break Rossi made the pass back for the lead. Grr. 

To add insult to injury Rossi has a few buffer cars as well. This is going all to plan for Rossi. 

150

Instead of a through the field we are now watching a very in depth race review. I appreciate the lack of through the field. It was a very hollow time filling segment. 

153

This must be one of those races that guys who wish for the good ol’ days pine for. 5 cars on the lead lap with 15 cars still running and only 1 guys who really has any kind of chance. And in reality it would take the top two cars breaking down to make a race of this. 

160

We have crossed 400 miles. We are into that funny part of the race where unpredictable and fatigue driven incidents can creep into the equation.

165

Daly into the wall. No yellow. Good for indycar. 

169

Rossi in. Now that his last stop is upon us, I get that nervous feeling for the leader. Any bobble an it’s over. Not enough time to recover. 

Power bobbles in turn 3 headed into the pits. That’s the race right there. Add to it his trip high in turn 1 that cost him the lead during the previous pit rotation and there is no one to blame but himself for throwing the win away. THAT is the Power I know and love. This is why I was never a fan of his until this year. I think I need to rethink my newfound allegiance. 

178

Coyne interview. He reminds me of everyones drunk uncle. So much so I have been known to refer to him as drunk uncle Coyne. The most lovable and passionate drunk uncle I know. 

181

The booth is counting down the lead. Come on. And now Kanaan is out of the booth. We are in dangerous territory right now. This race needs to finish up to save us all. 

188

Ok cool. We get a rundown of the manufacturer championship and Honda will probably win this year for the first time since Chevy joined. Congratulations as that is a very cool distinction. 

190

5.6 seconds now. This countdown is killing me. No way Rossi loses this without a crash. 

193

Oh hell, now we’re getting stats about consecutive 500 mile wins. They are really trying to will this race into a different outcome. 

195

I think they call a performance like this clinical. A clinical oval showing we have not seen since Bourdais at Milwaukee however many years ago. 

196

4 cars on the lead lap. 2 are 40+ seconds down. What a nutty day. It’s really amazing how close Power and Rossi could stay to each other. 

P1, P3 and P4 in the same shot. Crazy. 

200

—CHECKERS—

Rossi. Holy crap that was a beat down. 

Today was a long day. Best wishes and a speedy revery to Wickens. I can’t wait to talk to you all after Gateway. I’m out. Thank you for reading!

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… I Still Haven’t Started to Breathe Again Edition

Welcome back to Mid-Ohio!

Drivers already in their cars. This thing is happening! 

We’re treated to a Dixon montage. I know I said I’m #TeamDixon but I’m even more #TeamCloseChampionshipBattle so I hope his qualifying issues parlay into race issues. I want to see a close race and an even closer championship. 

The command was… smiley… and weird. no better than 5/10. 

Lots of spins in qualifying. That may mean an eventful race? This race has a history of going green flag to flag. As much as I like seeing those races every now and again, I really do, I hope we see some action today. Maybe something to mix the field up. Chaos. It’s been known to happen here. 

24 cars here today. Most excellent. 

Plenty of room to line up before the start. 

—GREEN—

Close, clean and fast! That’s the kind of racing I like to see!!

2

Sato slow on the track. I obviously picked him this weekend. 

Replay shows Chilton gives him the chrome horn!

3

Back up front. It’s easy to forget the race happens at the front sometimes. The Truth is killing the field. No suprises.

4

Daly is really giving Pagenaud a hard time. If Harding Racing is really trying out drivers, Daly has been crushing poor Gabby Chaves’ soul. I know who I would hire in 2019 if it was my choice…

Chilton with the drive through penalty. I can dig it.  

7

Seems like Rossi may have slowed the field excessively at the start. I guess I didn’t fully understand why the start was under review but I guess that makes sense. I’m with the booth. Rossi can do what he wants with the start. It hurts me to side with stupid Rossi, and I will note it was terrible form to bring the field that damn slow into the green. But fair nonetheless. 

10

Something really weird is happening with the front right of Chilton. Very slow and confused in the pits. I’m sure the booth will follow up. 

We are actually seeing quite a few guys in to the pits. Definitely a questionable call considering the possible weather in the area. I would wait as long as possible to take my stop. Maximize the odds I can put rain tires on. 

12

Great racing with Marco and Kanaan. 

13

Great racing with Sato and Bourdais! This is the kind of afternoon I wanted to see!!

15

HOLY CRAP BOURDAIS AROUND THE OUTSIDE IN THE KEYHOLE! He. Is. So. Good. On his day. 

These cars are able to race so dang close here. This is a great showing for Indycar. 

17

Everyone looks super racey today. I hope anyone anyone has something for Rossi. 

18

Dixon up to 4th. I can hear the quiet Jaws music slowly building. Differ reminds us of the day he came from last to first. 

19

The midfield is HOT today. 

How does Will Power already have 200 starts? I remember him as a rookie back in the ChampCar days. [Checks notes] Over ten years ago?? Ugh. 

21

Binder and Spigot having great days again. Carpenter seems like the weak link on the drivers squad. 

24

Alright alright alright… Newgarden is all over Rossi. 

25

Newgarden around Rossi With a POWER POWER move!! That was soo gooood. Newgarden is sooooo good. We are in yet another era of excellence. What an exciting time to be a fan! Rossi, Newgarden, Wickens, Hinch. All from North America. I hope they all stay committed to IndyCar and that a few younger guys can get their way into strong rides as well. 

26

Newgarden and Dixon in. 

Rossi stays out. I agree with them that this is the wrong move. 

I’m never sure what lap we’re on. NBCSN has an issue with not having any kind of crawl or indication of lap a surprising amount of time. Frustrating. 

Rossi out ahead of Dixon. Yea, that lost you a ton of track position. That was a pretty poor call to stay out. 

Woah! Dixon really pushed him out of the way in the keyhole but somehow Rossi stays ahead!! Another example of great clean and close racing!

I still don’t know what lap it is. Wickens in the lead on an alternative strategy. I’ve changed my mind. I hope we stay green so we can see all these strategy calls play out. There is plenty of action without any crashy crashy to ruin anyone’s day. 

We’ve gone literally an entire segment without any kind of ticker. In fairness, the racing was GREAT but enquiring minds want to know. 

34

Finally. 

Damn that Bourdais car looks so hot. We have had an amazing afternoon of racing. Veach under review for contact during the Bourdais pass. He should be penalized. Booth says Bourdais was in a blind spot, I say you *always* leave 1 car width plus one inch. That is like day 1 racing school stuff. Good on Bourdais for holding his ground and not running in the grass. He has earned the right to be on that strip of pavement. 

Replaying the Charlie Kimball win. I can’t even describe how similar his orange and blue car looks to the Dixon PNC car. It has to be a recycled paint job.

39

Wickens in. Blistered right front. I can’t wait to see what he can do this stint. 

Excellent move from Sato. Wickens slid wide about 4 inches and somehow Sato found his way in. I love this version of Taku. 

42

Newgarden in and out very quickly. I wonder if he short filled. I wonder if he’s going to save immediately? I wouldn’t assume there will be a yellow today. Risky decision. 

I don’t think I’ve mentioned it in a few weeks, but turketarian sighting. Still makes me nervous. 

47

Big fuel save lift from Rossi. Too bad. 

Cut to Wickens actually RACING the race. Wickens strategist says he doesn’t know whether a 2 or 3 stop strategy will work out… Let’s be honest… a 3 stop strategy almost never ever ever works in indycar.

50

Alright. I can’t keep all the strategies straight. But it’s not like I ever can. 

Power out and Newgarden around. Penske perfect, he doesn’t leave the slightest bit of donut on Power’s car. Another beautiful pass on an afternoon filled with beautiful passes. 

51

RHR wants around Power really bad but he needs to be careful or Dixon is going to welcome himself into the party. 

56

Booth informs me that Rossi is the only 2 stopper. I’ll be furious if that idiot wins saving fuel while the entire rest of the field is actually racing this dang race. But as we have already talked about a 3 stopper almost never works so…

59

I can’t deny the fact that we have had some of the best racing I’ve ever seen today and almost the entire field is running full tilt towards the checkers. It’s amazing how well these guys race and how fast they are when allowed to fully open it up. 

60

Rossi in. Here’s the race. I can’t see any way he won’t win bar a miracle. 

61

Leist did a most excellent job letting the race pass him on a very technical portion of the track. He continues to impress me week in and out. The young guys are having quite the year. 

Also, RHR racing Dixon racing Pagenaud racing Bourdais and doing it *close* is just about as good as you can get. 

65

Dixon and Newgarden have found each other on track. Hold onto your butts. 

No fade. I saw one car width plus an inch. Well done. I don’t think this is the last move Dixon is going to make. 

68 

Can’t type… Too busy holding my breath… RHR Pagenaud Bourdais. GIVE IT TO ME

69

Worth noting that Rossi is still in the lead. I LOVE NBCSN (this time). We haven’t had to look at stupid Rossi in a long time. We don’t need to watch him circulate in the lead anyway. Really, nothing against Rossi I just don’t want to watch anyone circulate uncontested at the front. Show me the business further back in the field. And that’s exactly what we’re getting. 

Sigh. Literally as I said that they showed Rossi. That’s ok. It had been long enough that I had to remind myself of what was happening up front. Reminding us he’s the leader heading to commercial is quite alright. 

73

Replay of a small off by Rossi. Dangerous. Why are you pushing so hard? Aren’t you trying to race to a fuel number? 

74

Damn. Bourdais is so good. Around the outside of Pagenaud. Get after it. 

75

Bourdais may get 2 in 2 laps. Not quite. Bourdais is hungry today. Thank the racing gods only one guy decided to make it a few mileage race today. 

Under review. And an almost immediate no action. Excellent call. That seems to be the story of Race Control this year. I really don’t remember the last time there were multiple bad calls that would sour my opinion on who and what was happening in Race Control. Cool. 

Turketarian Volume Two. 

Wait. Am I giving additional marketing value to this silly thing? Probably… I need to rethink this thing. 

81

Onboard with Rossi. Clearly lifting and coasting. Don’t hate the player; hate the game. Yea yea yea I know. Still though. 

83

From the overhead view of yet another amazing Boudrias pass, I think I saw a puff of smoke come out of the right side of the engine. I rewinded it multiple times and it was definitely mechanical related smoke, not tire smoke. 

86

Wickens has pulled back five or six seconds. He’s just as good. I want to see him and Rossi race more. I like that they don’t like each other. It’s juicy. 

88

Alright. Time to ride along with Rossi for the rest of there race. I’m cool with this. He’s definitely earned it for himself and NAPA. Not to mention that is one hell of a paint job. I was just thinking about how ‘shitty’ the livery was on Veach’s car before he got hooked up with relay. I can really appreciate a hot livery.

CHECKERS

Rossi. Well earned. 

Race of the year? Probably. 

Burnouts. Hell yes. OH NO DID YOU JUST BEACH YOUR CAR??? What a rookie move. You are so clearly from Europe sonny boy. I’m very embarrassed for him right now. The Truth. ha. Still, I’m excited for him. We need to have a variety of regular winners and I think this probably helps Andretti Autosport as well. It’s kind of feeling like there’s an equity to the teams right now. I know Dixon is way out in front but we have had some excellent races and excellent winners this season. 

Interview-shminterviews. I’ve had enough. After that race I need a fainting couch. I can’t wait to get to Pocono. I’ll see you guys in a few weeks. Thanks for reading!

Eric Hall 

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Unfiltered Race Notes… Not a bad race, eh? Edition

Ok. So I watched  little bit of prerace. Man that stand up on pitman with the booth guys looked painful. Paul Tracey never needs to be on TV ever again. I gotta give it to Bell for rocking the tennis shoes though.

Wish we could have had another way to get Hinch and Wickey together but the interview was really good anyway. The Eh Team is one of the most intriguing partnerships in motorsport and I cannot wait to see what else they have to offer in the future. 

Interesting way to give the command. I can get on board with this! it wasn’t great but I can forgive anything when done from a racecar. 

I always worry about the future of this race…

Damn it’s always great to see Robin Miller. 

Hmm. the counter says 1 of 85. I wonder if there is a timing issue that may delay the start or of this is an NBCSN thing. 

—GREEN—

OOOOOHHH DON’T TAKE YOUR TEAMMATE OUT!!!

Rossi dropping like a rock. Talk about being in the slow lane. 

I can’t breathe. This is action!

2

Calm. 

Onboard with Hinch really shows how smooth the race track is.

3

Rossi vs. Sato. Yes please. I would LOVE to see Sato “accidentally” “put” “Rossi” “into” “the” “tires” 

5

Andretti in the Oh Boy! Oberto car. Sorry but that livery looks better on an H1 hydroplane. 

6

Have we talked about Dixon driving a clone of Kimball’s paint scheme from years past? Who makes livery decisions over there at CGR? Seems they have fallen from grace in more than one aspect of being a kick ass team. 

7

Fuel saving party. 

Lame? Yes. 

8

PT talking about caster. Interesting but this needs Professor B. 

9

#TeamDixon

The two leaders are kind of driving away from the field. If this is the pace they both have over the field while fuel saving, we could be in for one of those days. 

Beautiful Skyline this gorgeous city has. 

13

First stops underway. 

Ugh Jones kills it in the pits. Obviously I picked him today for fantasy. 

14

Hell yes Jones. I love to see you fighting the leader! No reason to roll over with new tires. PT talking about some crazy conspiracy in the pits. Says Jones sat for ‘too long’ No. I replayed it and to the credit of the team they were on it. I wanted to use it as another opportunity to rip on Ganassi but they did an excellent job getting their driver out. 

18

Lock Step

21

I cannot believe how smooth this track is. I guess that makes me rethink my previous comment about worrying that this race may not have much of a future. Someone has invested in the race facility. 

22

Holy crap Bourdais into the tires.

OMG HE ALMOST REVERSES IT INTO TRAFFIC!!

No yellow. Well done everyone. I can tell they’re waiting a hair longer to throw the yellows on road courses. 

25

Alright. Almost the entire field has pitted. Resetting the order really doesn’t do anything. Same as it ever was. 

26

Spigot is making moves on old tires. I love the action even if it is a silly risk. 

The booth says the wing endplate that flew off Bourdais car flew into a non spectator area. Makes me wonder what ever happened to that person that got hit with debris in St. Pete in 2012.

28

We’re having a spirited fight at the front!

Ugh Immediate 

—YELLOW—

RHR into the tires and Rossi has a very broken front wing. Interesting…

Ok. replay shows they were unrelated incidents. 

30

Circulating under Yellow. 

Power in with right rear damage. The team is replacing some suspension pieces but that’s pretty much day done. He was speedy today as well. Too bad man. 

34

—GREEN—

HOLY CRAP NEWGARDEN INTO THE WALL!!!! LEADER INTO THE WALL!!

and 5 cars into each other down in T1. Bourdais clears the pileup but there are 4 guys left sitting. What a cluster. 

Replay shows that even though Rahal really really caused it, no one had grip. No one. It looked like there was rain on the track with how little grip anyone had. Power just drove straight into the tires unrelated to the crash. I can’t imagine that this restart will go much better. 

Excellent. I’m excited to see Wickey vs. Dixon. Something we really haven’t seen yet this year. 

—GREEN—

40

Everyone is sliding. How are we not crashing?

3 wide in the back of the field. Obviously. 

Andretti is having a great afternoon. His car looks yummy. I want jerky. 

41

Sato and Andretti giving us a show worth the price of admission. 

PT makes a good observation that most of the rear field has sustained some kind of damage. That has got to make for some extra squirrelly racing. 

—YELLOW—

Binder stalls… And reverses into the safety worker. It looks like everyone is ok… That was humorous. Kind of sums up the day, eh?

—GREEN—

45

Dixon is dropping the field. 

Tons of action at the back of the field, but there are a ton of bad fast cars back there too. This is making for really frantic racing. 

51

The cars have a ton of grip here. It’s cool watching the cars skate across the track while the tires and the downforce fight it. It’s an evocative sight. The chicane at IndyGP may be the only other place that has such a sight. 

52

Quiet. 

However, Pagenaud is having a good day. Nice to see. 

Both RHR and Rossi are on their 3rd wing. What the hell guys? Keep it together, those wings don’t grow on trees. Dallara probably loves Toronto. 

56

Final stops underway. After these stops, I would like to see something happen. 

Dixon is in. SLOW ON THE LEFT REAR! I keep hoping for some sort of pit bobble to cost someone a race this year… No. Plenty of room. CGR get yet another free pass. 

Wow Marco almost ran into Daly heading out of the pits!!

57

Pagenaud out ahead of Wickens.CHROME HORN FROM WICKENS!! 

Holy Shit I cannot believe Pagenaud ran Wickens out to the wall. All the way out to the wall. Intentionally putting someone into the fence out to the wall. I know you just got chrome horned but COME ON MAN. Pagenaud is kind of fragile. 

No action from race control. I agree. Wickens should have let Pagenaud spin across his nose into the wall. That may not have ended well for Wickens though. live to fight another day. 

I want to see the helmet view from Wickens. 

65

Sato crabbing very badly down the road. He has clearly made friends with the wall. Out of the race. As you do. 

Video of Dixon into the wall. What a weird day it’s been. I wonder if we’ll have a race yet. I wonder if Wickens can make something happen?

For the record, we had 2 commercial breaks in a row. They came back and did a race recap and immediately went back to commercial. What a bunch of crap. Screw NBCSN if this is the way it’s going to be. No. I kid. This is why I don’t watch live!

70

Shout out to Kimball. Ok Ok Ok, he’s in P6. I can get on with that. 

71

The top 3 are compressing…

Looks like Honda is having a pretty good day. 

75

Commercials are coming hard and fast. I still can’t watch the side by side with the advertisements yelling at me. 

Pigot very slow. Clearly has been into the wall. What a day of carnage. 

77

I really like Pagenaud. Really like him. But I hope Wickens can get to him and say hello. 

Spigot out. What a shame. I threw him out of my fantasy team in favor of Jones. Sweet sweet vindication. 

79

Nose cam. Hell yes. 

I need more nose cam. 

I have a fever and the only prescription is more nose cam. 

81

Watching the Oh Boy! car circulate makes me longingly think of 200 MPH boats on the Ohio River. 

82

Wickens may yet get to Pagenaud.

 84

Marco into the pits for a splash. That hurt the soul. I feel for you man. 

—CHECKERS—

Dixon. Consolidates his championship lead. 

I’m definitely a Dixon fan, but I am a bigger fan of close racing and close championships. I hope someone can get to Dixon before the end of the year. 

Interviews… Interviews… Pagenaud seems cool about the situation. I doubt Wickens will have a similar reaction. He’s kind of striking me as a whiner. Let see, shall we?

Good hard and fair. Cool. I still don’t like the idea of running a guy out to the wall. We already lost someone here because of wheel to wheel contact close to the wall. One car width and an inch. it’s a very different story on a wide open road course, but some more care needs to be taken in these close quarters. 

Not a bad race. Slow but not a snoozer. 

Newgarden not blaming the marbles. That kid is a straight shooter.

Onto Mid-Ohio!! 

Much love to everyone who made it to this point. The secret number is 9

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… Why am I Writing This on a Sunday Edition

No prerace today so let’s jump right into this!

Wow Leigh Diffey that suit is something else. 

More RHR… snore. Sorry man but he just bores me. And I just don’t believe he has the killer skill, I think he has taken great advantage of great equipment and great circumstances. Statistically he’s great but I like to dislike him. 

With that said, I hope he does well today. I picked him in fantasy. 

Lame command. Start those ethanol powered engines. Come on. 

The cars look good in short oval trim here. 

—GREEN—

1

4 wide out of T2. Ridic. 

3

Side by side running for a few laps. Cool. We’ll see how long that lasts. 

5

Already making the high line work. That’s super cool. Hopefully we can get a good short oval this year. 

7

Crazy action. Passing everywhere. Can we come to Iowa twice? Also, why the hell wasn’t this on Saturday night? Daytona. I know. Still it’s unacceptable to race this race on a Sunday afternoon. Find a way to make it work. 

14

Already catching the rear of the field. 

30

We miss a ton of laps during the commercial break. New leader is Newgarden. 

31

I can’t believe the actions we are seeing today. 

37

Holy Moly how is Newgarden up 4 seconds already. I have to imagine there are only like 8 cars left on the lead lap? 

Ticker says there are 12 cars still on the lead lap. 

41

Hinch marching up to P2. Excellent. 

43

Newgarden +8.5. Damn. 

Can he lap the entire field?

53

Ok. Now there are 9 cars on the lead lap. However, the action is nonstop. These cars are racing close and loose. Someone is going to end up in the wall before this thing is all said and done. 

60

We can see Rossi is having trouble, but Newgarden is amazing today. 

63

I have also noticed the LED plates are still not working. That is lame as hell. Put the old ones back on or something. That’s better than nothing. 

67

I have no idea where he is in the race but Sato is really mixing it up as well. If it were me I wouldn’t be anywhere near him today. 

70

First real stops starting to happen. This could really mix the field up. Hopefully all these guys can keep it together. 

75

We’re watching cars on new tires literally drive around the cars that have yet to stop. Unbelievable difference in speed. 

77

FIRE IN THE VEACH BOX!! That’s SHOCKING! He likes to be on fire I guess. 

81

Leaders in. 

82

Rossi stalls it. The Truth isn’t looking very Truthy today. 

Aaaaand Newgarden is back to his ass kicking ways. 

98

Well this race is flying by. 

Pigot in P5. Excellent!

102

Alright. I think the race has calmed down ever so slightly. This has been an unbelievable showing for indycar today. 

109 

Newgarden fighting lapped traffic. The booth is talking like these lappers have any real chance to stay ahead of Newgarden. He has a real chance of lapping up to 2nd. Hinch is about 3 seconds down with P3 and P4 almost 18 seconds down. This is a crazy showing. 

Hinch is close enough to win this race. 

123

5 cars on the lead lap. 

Also I can’t believe we’ve had a clean race until this point. 

The word clinic is often thrown around…

128

No one is driving around like a back of the pack idiot as well. This has truly been a great afternoon of indycar racing. 

134

I know we’re losing a ton of speed because of tire degradation but because of the quality of racing it’s not really that noticeable. Thinking back to Texas we were losing a ton of speed AND the cars couldn’t get close enough to race. This is the way this is supposed to happen. 

139

—YELLOW—

Veach into the wall. Too bad. I would have like to have seen Newgarden lap the entire field. 

Honestly, that wasn’t a huge hit. We could have almost stayed green. 

This could be where it all falls apart. How many indycar races have we seen that started clean until the first half only to devolve into a round of demolition derby. I hope that does not happen today. 

I agree with the call to sweep the track. Always sweep the track.

Turketarian sighting. I will never buy butterball. I will always opt for non butterball because if this god awful commercial.

—GREEN—

150

Pigot into P2 around Hinch. Of course, as the proceed to battle, Newgarden pulls away. 

155

10 cars on the lead lap. Disappointing. 

158

I bet Newgarden is enjoying the clear track ahead. 

THROUGH THE FIELD??? WHAT THE HELL?? I THOUGHT THIS SEGMENT WAS DEAD? And how are we bringing it back to life today? This is clearly a boring ass race deployment. Maybe an excuse to show other cars because the action has been frantic today. Save for Newgarden and Hinch, we haven’t been able to really focus on anyone else. 

165

That was a lengthy rant in terms of lap count. 

We have actual racing happening while we are forcing our way through the field. Why are we doing this today? how long are they going to subject us to this insanity?

169

Hinch can get into the same zip code as Newgarden but no closer. 

172

Sato literally elbowing his way through. That’s my boy. 

Hmm. We haven’t heard the jet fighters in a gymnasium thing today. 

Tour de France team time trial advertisement. Super cool. That’s what I’m talking about. Talk about some aerodynamics. 

187

Interviewing pit boxes. Just show me some racing. 

189

The lead lap is much closer to the leader than previous stints. This is probably an example of unloading the car in a really good spot verse working on your car through the race. Other teams have had 2 stops to pull a little bit closer to Newgarden. 

198

Robin Miller noting that this race belongs on Saturday night. I don’t agree with that crusty curmudgeon often but here I do. 

207

Usually I’m into the clips packages that they intersperse through the race, but today I’m not into it. I don’t want them to cut away for a second. 

212

I’ve updated my feeling that Hinch can win this race. He can’t. 

That is all. 

213

Newgarden has this crazy exciting race in the bag. On paper this will look like utter domination. Yet another example of needing to be there to fully experience the day. 

223

RHR in and shaking the car on pit lane. Interesting. I wonder if that is related to the communication issues?

225

Everyone follows. No one wants to take the chance of getting separated from the leader. 

RHR back in. Booth notices. Toe link? He sends himself. This is a pretty boss showing from RHR today. 

228

How is Newgarden already back to the lead? What an afternoon he is having. 

Kevin Lee closes the loop regarding RHR. Yes, he was having issues. 

241

How are we already on lap 241? 

Rossi is making life really hard on Hinch. The Truth is really making it hard to be his friend on track. I foresee a stormy interpersonal future for him. 

250

The action has really calmed down. Not in a bad way. In a more easy to follow way. 

253

ALRIGHT ALRIGHT HINCH AND NEWGARDEN ARE IN THE SAME SHOT!!

He can do this. 

HE CAN DO THIS!

HE TOTALLY DID THIS!!

HINCH TO THE LEAD!

256

Hinch clears Newgarden and Power and looks like he can cruise for a while. 

Take some breaths…

270

The gap sits at 0.5 seconds. I have not taken many breaths. It’s hard to believe that a SPM car is in the lead at a short oval. 

Ahead of a dominating Penske no less. 

272

1.5 seconds. 

5 cars on the lead lap. 

What a race. 

276

Damn RHR in again. What a tough day. 

280

Wickens into P3 around Pigot!

Wickens is unreal. How long until he heads to Penske? Or Ganassi?

282

Onto Newgarden? 

285

Ok. I can’t believe there was only 1 caution. On such a hot day with, what the booth says, is 1000 pounds less downforce. Every single driver earned their money today. This was a day of professionalism. 

290

Hinch ahead 8 seconds! 

Great momentum heading into Toronto. 

294

—YELLOW—

Ed sideways and Sato into his wing. 

Booth debating tires. OF COURSE YOU GET TIRES. 5 cars on the lead lap. However, this thing could end under yellow. 

Wow. Hinch stays out. Newgarden and Wickens in. Can they even get any green flag running? I just don’t see how there is time. 

—WHITE FLAG—

Booth says lights off on the pace car but the lights are CLEARLY on. What the hell man. What are these guys watching. WHAT A GOAT RODEO OF AN ENDING. 

—CHECKERS—

Hinch. 

Burnouts. Hell yes. 

I totally enjoyed that race. One of the best in a long long time. Also great for Hinch. Indy 500 etc. blah blah blah. Seriously we need to go here twice a year. If this race is on Saturday night I am there as well. 

Sigh. So many empty promises regarding future race attendance. 

Wickens dejected about the inconsistency of indycar. Welcome home kid, I hope it tastes great. 

Spigot looks like he belongs in NASCAR. I can’t explain why. There’s just a country bumpkin aura about him. 

Sato is just the best. 

Scott Dixon always looks sunburnt. He’s talking about his bad day. Sounds like Ganassi is not the team they once were. Tires on the wrong sides? Who’s getting paid for these kind of blunders? If the rumors about him moving to McLaren are true I think he should go. And not look back. No Target as a sponsor feels like the beginning of the end for ol’ Chip Ganassi racing. 

Drunk Will Power is always the best Will Power. I have never seen a man change so much after an Indy 500 win as this guy. What a different racer. I can’t wait to see what the 2nd half of his career brings. 

Rahal not complaining! An honest recall of his day. That’s a nice change!

Alright. I’ll listen to this RHR interview. Really just another tough day, 

Cool. Good race. 14/10. They’re all good races. Final thought, How is Dixon in the points lead when his team installs a set of tires backwards? Sigh. What an odd afternoon. 

I’ll see you guys in Toronto!

Thanks for reading. 

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… Another day of Domination Edition

I should have gone camping at Road America this weekend. Maybe next year? I’ve heard bicycles aren’t allowed, How in the hell do you get to the far reaches of the track? Anyway, how about some racing? 

No. 

Prerace? Ok, maybe a little bit. 

Alex Rossi is the worst interview. I hope he wins today. 

Previous race recaps are always great. Shout out to IMSP for always doing an amazing job. 

I love you drunk Will Power. I feel like there’s a 25% chance that Power will drop a not safe for TV word at any time and I love him for it. 

Ok. Im also on the Wickens train. 

The kid dancing behind Leigh Diffey is amazing. 

What’cha Cooking. Dear god melon ball my eyes out. Ok, Norman Pagenaud is in the house. I may be able to make it through this. But this hurts. The dog is gone… FF engaged. 

These Robin Miller pieces feel a lot like the old Posey’s Perspectives from the old Speed Channel coverage. This is good. 

What’cha Cooking is not though. Please spare us. 

Dixon is the man. 

The command. Yes, that was very good. 

—GREEN—

Power is dropping like a rock. Engine engine engine. Typical.

Rossi driving Wickens off the road. Thats diiiirty. Is there some bad blood between them?

Was that even Rossi? I’m already so confused. 

2

Long laps. 

Now Power is sitting in the pits. The Indy winners curse just took a few weeks to claim it’s 2018 victim. 

It’s a block party today all around. 

4

Speaking of block party Spigot is still able to get around Pagenaud. And Pagenaud isn’t really having that great of a year. More of the same today? 

Newgarden really carries the 1 well. I hope he doesn’t run away with it today though, But it’s still nice to see the 1 in front. Maybe that curse takes a bit longer to take effect this year? Who knows, it’s all silly anyway.

7

Kind of strung out. Time will help. Already in fuel savings?

Ok, I did see Rossi push Wickens off. Interesting. I wonder what other kind of trouble those 2 will find themselves in. 

9

The Bourdais car looks ridiculous. The charm has officially warn off but *know* you can see it from a mile away at the track so ill allow it. 

Turketarian. Still gross.

Damn Bourdais having so many issues this year. Makes me so sad. This makes for a really long day. 

12

Everyone with big slides through T1. Fair to say everyone in the series has some quick hands. 

13

I appreciate how close the top 3 are here at a long track that rewards high speed handling. Considering how strong the Penske shock program is I would expect them to excel here. Well done Andretti Autosport. They’re really stepping up this year.

15

The rest of the field has now come in. 

Andretti and Rahal have been kind of mixing it up this year. I hope they find each other again like St. Pete 2012. 

Dixon in from the lead. They have a great camera angle of the cars heading into pit lane from across the track and you can *really* see how steep the start of the front straight in. Amazing track 

18

Diffey expertly notes that the front of the field is really tightening up, but it feels like one of those races. One of those that is close to grab but no one ever really makes a move. Booth notes we’re already in fuel save mode. Hard to get excited about the race if the top runners have already resigned themselves to a fuel race. 

Boo.

19

Power out of the race. Too bad. I really feel for him today.

22

RHR is so close but he’s just not going to get Newgarden. 

Power is a great interview now days. The calmer more focused Will Power is scary in a he-could-win-everything-and-make-up-for-all-those-year’s-he-fought-Dario kind of way. I like it. 

We’re getting a flash back to the 2012 Iowa race. Those cars were actually pretty damn good looking. Very distinctive. 

24

As i say that Bell says he’s glad we have moved to a more classic indycar look. I don’t necessarily disagree, but I’m surprised how plain and simple the cars feel now. I *do* appreciate the increased straight line speed. 

26

We have some Canadian on Canadian action happening. Finally something…

Hinch completes a HELL of a pass. But I hope a Schmidt car can get around the 2nd Coyne seat without too much trouble. But that’s the kind of day we’re having. 

29

SAAAAATTOOOOOOO!!!

Rossi just muscled Sato off the track after an amazing pass on Wickens! I wish we would see the old (regular?) Sato and watch him push right back. Sigh. Too bad. 

Race control to review. Nothing should be done, But Rossi is a troublemaker. 

31

We’re watching Veach get lapped by the lead pack and he’s doing a great job of staying out of the way. Even though he is a literal child, I’m liking Veach more and more each week. Especially now that he has a big boy paint job. 

Tour de France lede. Cool. 

34

Talking about newgarden getting dogged by RHR. Please. 

Alright. We see 1 more pass. 

Gabby Chaves giving Hinch the business. I’m ok with what is happening right now. Chaves is a tough MFer, man. 

Alright alright alright we have Rahal storming through the field. 

BABE WE CAN DO IT

I’ll root for anyone if it makes it a good race. I’m only in it for the good racing. 

38

As you saw on non-stop… No… No I didn’t. I can’t watch that crap with the commercials screaming at me. 

Rossi with a soft tire. Tough luck. Booth hypothesizes it may be from the Sato incident. Hmm. Self induced penalty. Cool. 

Well, only cool if its from the Sato incident, otherwise tough luck. Oh. Rossi cuts the engine off. Another steering issue for an Andretti car. What the hell man. I was just extolling the virtues of Andretti Autosport just a few short laps ago. Totally and completely rescinded. 

The Truth doesn’t loose a lap. Ok. 

40

When that kick ass Firestone commercial is on I’ll watch that! what race?! The commercial opposite of the side-by-side coverage can’t be better than the race. 

In fairness, that commercial break was mostly indycar commercials. 

Has Dixon won this thing yet?

Checks notes… 

Newgarden I mean. 

42

I’m definitely not saying this is a bad race, but I want to see the predators stalking prey and scoring a pass after a long and tough battle. I don’t really feel like there is much stalking. There is some fighting but nothing real. 

43

I think Newgarden is driving just outside of RHR’s reach. I bet he could be crushing the field right now if not for saving fuel and equipment.

45

Dixon gets close but cannot even start a passing maneuver.  Newgarden, RHR Dixon. This is how it ends. 

Seems like Dixon is falling off the pace. I have have to hand it to RHR. It always surprises me when he has a good day. I’m such a RHR-ist. 

46

Kind of hard to hear the voices today. Cindric is mixed really low on a day when the booth has been unusually quiet as well. NBCSN races are mixed so different than ABC races. A distinction that doesn’t matter anymore now that I think about it. 

48

Spigot up to P7. He had to have made some passes then, why in the world didn’t we see them in replay? This kid could be the next big thing. 

Interesting that I don’t really remember going through the field a single time this year. I wonder if someone who matters has dropped in on us making fun of their segment? 

49

Yes. There has definitely been some coming and going, Why didn’t we see any of it? Frustrating. It feels almost like an ABC race if we’re in the business of making comparisons. 

50

Veach with the fastest lap of the race. Well done!

We get some replay action of De Melo making it hard on Veach. For a guy who has like 5 races under his belt, he’s really got some big britches on. 

Aaaaaand we see him almost spear it into the tires. 

51

Newgarden is starting to turn the speed on now that the end is within sight. He is seriously pulling away from RHR. This could have been a beat down. Thank you for making it feel much closer than it really was. 

53

We’re on follow Newgarden to the checkers mode. 

I still want to camp here. 

—WHITE FLAG—

One more lap of watching P1 cruise around…

—CHECKERS—

Newgarden. Drive of the day goes to Dixon. Heartbreak goes to Power. Newgarden put almost 3 seconds on RHR in the final 5 laps. Damn. 

Sigh… The booth finally mentions what I’ve been talking about all afternoon. I’m available for hire. 

Easiest win of his career?

Probably. 

Dixon with Miller. Most good. Most good indeed. 

NBCSN Post race is so much better. This is excellent coverage. Not to mention that the driver’s interviews are on point today. 

Lol Sato complaining about being touched… YOU SHOULD HAVE TOUCHED BACK!!

Babe complaining. Just shut up you big complainer. 

Alright. Enough of this. Good race all in all. I do like to see a flag to flag green race so we can get a true feel of the drivers pace. No surprises there. I’m definitely interested to see what Iowa will bring us!

As always, Thank you for reading!

Eric Hall

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