Unfiltered Race Notes… 8 Laps of Insanity Edition

After a month we’re finally back!

I watched some of the prerace. Some of it is ok but some of it is really rough. I can tell they’re trying at least. Hopefully they can iron out the kinks before 2019.

Also, I think I saw a Ryan Hunter-Reay butterball commercial. Holy cow, now thats some throwback.

The Bourdais crash is still shocking to watch.

I’m nervous…

The command was lame.

Sigh. I know it’s like 95 degrees out there but it looks like the grandstands are pretty empty.

I need to get this out of the way early: The Zach Veach car looks like a piece of poo.

—GREEN—

Everyone clean through the first lap. RHR ON THE MOVE!

3

Difficult conditions. The sun is right in the drives eyes and there is a ton of movement.

Marco up four.

5

Going to go ahead and plant my rear right on the front of the Bourdais train. I would love to see him prove the doubters wrong and take it to the big boys. He didn’t win 4 on accident.

10

Top 3 are all very close. I swear I say it every race but Rossi is the truth. It’s only a matter of time until he wins a championship himself.

13

No telemetry for Bourdais. Sounds like it will be a fun night for him.

14

Already caught the last car on the lead lap.

25

Alright, moment of truth. Will Bourdais be able to get around Kimball? Think odds are on a high speed parade tonight.

29

I rarely watch the races truly live so I’m getting the opportunity to use the app. Super cool!

32

Rossi really giving Pagenaud the business.

35

We’re really lock steppy right now…

36

Already a second commercial break. This is not ideal.

38

Bourdais got around Kimball. Did that take too long?

41

Kimball looks to be dutifully moving over for the rest of the field now that he’s been properly lapped.

—YELLOW—

Pietro into the wall. Ouch. Welcome to short track racing. At least the tub isn’t totaled; we live again to race another day!

OH NO HE HIT HIS PIT GUY!!! BOURDAIS WHAT THE HELL MAN?!

AND ROSSI?!? WHAT IS THIS? ROOKIE HOUR?!

By chance I was listening to the Bourdais radio. He is very distressed.

I haven’t seen a lap cont in ages. I feel so lost. The sweepers are out so it’s a long yellow.

50

—GREEN—

Dog fight in the middle of the pack.

Drive through for Bourdais and Rossi. Damn.

57

Good onboards. Unfortunately this has devolved into more of the same. I worry that we will need a ton of yellow to make this a good race.

63

Roger Penske always looks like a robot when they show him on TV.

I wonder how the tire dragging exercise went off? From the look of it, not well. Did they even do it? I haven’t seen anyone take an honest look to the high side yet.

71

Power makes it around his lapper.

Enough with these stupid commercials. I want to hear those cars. I’ve had enough of RHR selling me butterball.

I wonder what will become of the indycar app once Verizon leaves.

78

The radio’s are mostly quiet right now. Drivers are being fed gaps and there’s not even really any spotter chatter.

84

I don’t know what it is but the Juncos car looks like it has an Indy Lights paint job on it. although sharp and colorful, it looks plain at the same time. I remember making a comment last time about how lame the harding racing paint job looks as well. I wonder if theres something to be said about the way established teams design paint jobs.

89

First time we’ve really seen the short oval kit. The cars look sharp! I really like the rear wheel ramps. An easy aerodynamic get would be to shield the front wheels even more in the coming years. It would be a missed opportunity for Dallara not to iterate on the current standard kit. I know the teams would HATE to but new parts each year but the continual change and chase of speed would be cool.

96

I need some excitement… Changing the radio to Marco. Hopefully he has come complaining to do.

20 laps until his next stop.

complaints of loose. YES I’M GETTING EMOTIONAL MARCO YELLING ON THE RADIO!!

103

Hey booth, can you tell me what the drop off is?

Marco: “Miserable”

105

We aren’t going through the field, per say, but we are definitely touring different steering wheels. Interesting way to kill some time!

109

Onboard the poo mobile!! However, he has made up the most positions. Well done.

114

RHR first to blink. This will be interesting to see how these green flag stops play out.

120

Pigot may have the best looking car on the grid.

121

Leist loses a wheel in pit lane. Goes before the left rear is secure. Definition of a rookie mistake.

125

Power comes in and Rahal is still out. What a huge spread of pit windows!

131

It would be very cool to see SPM make an honest run at the championship this year.

Talking about the 178 million dollar impending renovation to Phoenix. Seems unnecessary in this day and age. I can’t imagine that NASCAR will really continue to pay off like it has for the last decade. And we can clearly see that indycar isn’t filling seats.

148

Marco is basically silent on the radio. I’m shocked we haven’t gone through the field yet.

149

Wickens into P1. Damn son. Well done! Hitch washed out behind lapped traffic. What a savvy move.

154

Power slow on the track and into pit lane. He hit the wall. Too bad. Power has not been around these last few years.

157

Wickens having no issues cutting through traffic. Amazing.

164

HINCH DROPPING F BOMBS ALL OVER THE PLACE. I would be too he got balked bad by the lapped guy he was trying to get around. Thats the kind of excitement I like!!

It may have been Rossi working his way through the field. Is he the only one to be able to make up positions?

172

Onboard the poo car. Seriously though, who signs off on these liveries? I rescind what I said before about established teams knowing how to paint a car.

174

PT mentions Rossi has untapped himself.

177

Someone brushed the wall and Bourdais about walled it due to the chain reaction! these guys look like they have absolutely no grip at all.

I can’t believe how good Wickens is at this short track racing thing.

This shoot out between Hinch and Wickens that is developing is really cool.

183

Can RHR hold onto it during the pit exchange??

185

No

187

Interesting hesitation from Pagenaud before leaving the pits.

Onboard during the Rahal stop shows how dang bright the side panel LED displays are. Really really cool!

Hinch Radio: We DO NOT have to stop again.

195

The top 5 looks really interesting. Rossi has a rocket ship. I rescind my boring race comments. I know I know. Sometimes it takes a while for an indycar race to really show its cards.

200

This race is flying by.

Bourdais hanging onto the lead with misplaced hope. But fighting the good fight in any case.

204

Rossi around Carpenter. Ridiculous skill in that kid. How did he not make it in F1? Idiots.

208

Rossi is worth the price of admission. 52nd on track pass tonight. Animal.

220

I’ve been listening to that Hinch and Rossi podcast. I wish they talked about racing on it because i would love to hear what why had to say about tonight run in!

222

Will the tires last? The million dollar question.

228

These commercials are ridiculous. I feel like were going every 5 minutes now.

—YELLOW—

Ed Jones into the wall.

Who’s going to come for tires?

Saturday night shootout at its finest.

ROSSI STAYS OUT!! Wickens and Hinch as well. CRAZY!!

Rossi Radio: My left foot was going numb earlier this evening and now my right boot is melted to the throttle.

Track temp is 95 degrees.

234

Sweepers are out. Good call. I don’t care how long this takes this will give us our best chance at a good finish. I have to say that this may be the best race at phenix yet.

237

I think that Hinch may have this one. New tires may be able to get around Rossi and Wickens, But I just don’t think there will be enough time to get around all 3 guys.

However, If Rossi and Wickens race each other hard there may be no room for Newgarden to even slip through.

242

—GREEN—

Newgarden around Rossi and Wickens immediately.

246

Newgarden around Hinch. What a decisive move! Thats how you win a race!

Hinch is falling through the field.

250

—CHECKERS—

Newgarden wins. Another short track win for the champion. Wickens drove Newgarden hard but fair. That was SO SO good. Patience was a virtue for sure. That race took forever to get going but what an ending! I wonder if through the field has been discontinued because this would have been a race to do it in.

This has been a great start to the season albeit a bit slow because of the month off between the two races. This would be an excellent gap to put Mexico city in!

Watching the replay of the Newgarden and Wickens pass. What a show of skill and respect. We need to see more driving like this. Wickens is already a journeyman driver. I hope he can stick around for a few years. It really feels like a changing of the guard is upon us as there is a ton of young talent ready to win their own championship with Newgarden leading the way.

Rossi being interviewed. What a boring dude.

Ok. Enough of that. After a slow start I really enjoyed what the race ha to give us in the final 1/4. Well done and onto Long Beach!!

Eric Hall

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One Response to Unfiltered Race Notes… 8 Laps of Insanity Edition

  1. DZ-groundedeffects says:

    Nice job per usual Eric! I enjoy reading these the day after. It’s like rehashing the race with a friend.

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