Unfiltered Race Notes… 3 Cars Makes a Race Edition

Oh Texas, how you make me so nervous. We’re coming at you at the tail end of the pre race. I love the barbershop quartet national anthem! I’m totally into it!

No comment about the command.

GREEN

These young guys are way too protective for this point in the race. It’s hard to look away from a Texas race sometimes. 

6

No love lost between Rossi and Newgarden. It seems like this will be a really good rivalry if they can keep the fire burning. I hope Penske doesn’t continue to court Rossi either. I need them on different teams. 

14

Very nice move from Veach. 4 of my fantasy picks are like 17 18 19 and 20. I also picked Veach. I also rip on Veach all the time. He’s in 11th and moving nicely through the field and he may be my only hope tonight. Where’s that bandwagon…

21

Alright, it looks like we’ve already found the tail end of the field. That did not take long at all. I think this race will look strung out tonight. Tires will be at a premium tonight. 

25

We still have this Rossi/Pigot/Newgarden battle and it only take 2 or 3 cars to make a race. 

29

Dixon is here. The Iceman Cometh. Maybe. Getting there is one thing. Passing is a totally different question tonight. 

37

I so rarely get to watch these live I just tried to fast forward through the commercials. 

41

Pretty late in the tire run and we still have some racey looking cars. I’m really impressed on how well the tires have held on. It’s slightly strung out but everyone is still in touch with each other and able to race as they fall off at different rates. I’m really impressed with how well the package is handling the conditions tonight. 

48

Dixon keeps pulling up to the rear of Sato and it seems like he’s just checking the waters. No need to be in front right now. The leader has to race each cat that needs to be lapped. It’s just a much more stressful position to be in during one of these races.

With that said, cue the Jaws music. Dixon is definitely stalking. 

57

RHR in first. 

The field follows very quickly.

SATO SATO’d his crew. Dammit SATO you don’t deserve the lead, or really to race here, when you mow down your crew. Sigh. What are we going to do with you, man? 

66

Ok, it looks like RHR got around Dixon for the lead during the stop rotation. I bet Dixon is frustrated. 

Eric, they say, why don’t you work in indycar, they say.

71

Dixon is on his way. Or is he. Probably not. We’re probably in for more of the same from Dixon. 

87

Herta is driving like a man who has never hit the wall. 

We’ve also lapped through 13th place. That hasn’t really taken long. This could totally be a 6 cars on the lead lap kind of night I think. 

97

Checking back in on the front. Dixon is still stalking. I’m surprised we haven’t seen a through the field segment yet. 

100

Herta and Rossi. Or New Truth and Old Truth are really moving through the field. I’m excited to see them continue to race against each other. I’m always worried that one of these great young kids will get snatched up by Formula 1 but that could just mean another seat for the next guy. 

108

Speaking of, Rossi is about to pass into P3. 

113

Herta around the outside of Rossi and Hinch in 2 laps. This kid is amazing. He was able to hold it wide open around the outside of T1. Rossi isn’t even close to being able to do that right now. This is a ridiculous performance. 

122

The Herta 88 in white green with red accents reminds me of the Joonyer 88 Mountain Dew car. I want some Mountain Dew…

126

Dixon lost some ground on the second pit stop exchange. It’s still kind of the RHR Dixon show as they’re 9 seconds ahead of the rest of the field. 

135

YELLOW

Veach stopped on track after an incredible save after brushing the wall. Sigh. Veach you really disappoint me. 

I bet this thing turns into a mileage race. I hope we get another yellow to mix this thing up. I’m not usually one to agree with throwing a yellow for a brushed wall, but when you end up stalled in the middle of the track I guess that warrants one. 

I was actually ok with the green flag race. I enjoy watching speed and strategy rewarded independently of lucky yellows. 

GREEN

3 wide. But it’s really hard to compete these high side passes. Herta is about the only one that can really end it into T1.

150

Starting to see sparks. 

PT: If RHR wants to win he’s got to get out of the lead. I agree, but it sucks because it’s so damn  hard to get that spot back. If I were RHR I would keep trying for the win. You never know what will happen. 

158

I think we’re going through the field. I hate this way of talking about the field. Try something different and start from the back of the pack or something.

That was a Honda through the field. I think we stopped at P11 and it may have only showcased Honda drivers? 

170

Dixon finds his way around RHR. Curious if he got passed with speed or because of fuel.

173

Very clear that he’s saving. Boo. You deserve to fall through the field. 

175

Rossi sound Dixon!! He was finally able to sail it around the outside into T1. That is the winning move of the night. Sailing around the high side of T1/2, I mean. It’s way too early to call a winner at Texas. 

177

Dixon back around Rossi. This looks like a fuel save dance. 

180

These 4 drivers are exactly the reason we say poi only need 2 or 3 cars to make a race because they are worth the cost of admission tonight. 

RHR already in. His race is toast without a ton of yellow. 

187

Rossi back around. This is great. Even if it’s manufactured because of fuel strategy you have got to appreciate this kind of passing for the lead. 

195

Hinch, Rossi and Dixon all came in together and they’re immediately racing as soon as they get back out on track. I really appreciate what these guys are doing for the show tonight. 

204

Newgarden into the lead on another amazing call from Tim Cindric. He came in to top off during the caution only losing a single position but allowing him to stop shorter this time and make up that track position. Amazing. If Newgarden wins the championship this year it will be in large part to Cindric. I mean, it’s usually the engineer, but this is two weeks in a row with masterful calls. 

219 (I think. They’ve switched the count to laps to go)

YELLOW

Hinch into the wall. First car to test the high side turn 2 exit and it does not go well. No grip at all. Too bad as he has had a killer run tonight. And unfortunately, Hinch doesn’t often have runs like this. 

He looks quite mad. 

226

GREEN

DIXON ON THE OUTSIDE OF NEWGARDEN. THEY TOUCH THEY TOUCH!! 

Newgarden retains the lead and somehow they don’t crash. 

Herta is able to complete the high side out of 2 pass. This dude is so so good.

228

Herta into Dixon. 

YELLOW

WTF YOU DON’T CRASH OUT SCOTT DIXON!!! 

Replay shows that Herta was below the line. 

Sigh…

I hate to say it but if Dixon would have given 6 more inches. Herta is building the reputation of checkers or wreckers. And I LIKE IT. 

236

GREEN

Rossi v Newgarden

240

Rossi has plenty of room on the outside of 1 and plenty of speed but doesn’t have the confidence to let it sail into T2. I don’t blame him, but you don’t have to actually complete the pass, you only have to be ahead at the line…

244

Holding my breath…

246

Not close enough.

CHECKERS

Newgarden. What an amazing call by Cindric. And Newgarden positioned his car perfectly. I don’t think Josef could have held him off after a fresh tire restart, but he didn’t have to. 

DONUTS!!! YESSSSS OPEN WHEEL DONUTS ARE AMAZING!! 

Good on Newgarden. You have to do donuts in NASCAR land.

Interview with Herta. I agree, dude. Dixon kind of turned down into you. That was just unfortunate. 

The victory lane celebration here is ridiculous. 

Ok! that was really really run! As I said earlier, Texas make me nervous but these things are almost always exciting. The cars were really strung out but drivers were still mobile and able to connect with each other. 

I really think that was one of the most exciting races I have ever seen even though that high side really was never there. Great single lane race. Just amazing. 

We get a few weeks to breath before the next race. Look out for Detroit 2 notes in a few days. They’re already completed, I just want to give some space between the posts. 

Thank you for reading!!

Eric Hall

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1 Response to Unfiltered Race Notes… 3 Cars Makes a Race Edition

  1. billytheskink says:

    Watching Herta last night was like watching a young Paul Tracy. Great for entertainment value and for Dallara.

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