Unfiltered Race Notes… Another Hot Night in Texas

Hey hey here we are again! I love Texas and  it looks like a hot one tonight. Literally. Texas has been one of my faves but sometimes the cars cannot really get too close to each other. I hope this year isn’t like that. I’m not saying I want pack racing by any means, but I hope these guys can get close enough to mix it up. 

Paul Tracy looks like shit. Sorry but he has really done some damage to himself since retiring. 

Yea, like last year. That was a great race. 

Holy crap that in car from Claman DeMelo! He was clearly scared by Power. I hope this sketchy pit exit is ok tonight. 

I agree with Newgarden. I think this race will definitely tighten up as the track cools down. Everyone feels antsy. And for good reason here at Texas. 

Ugh Alex Rossi…

The Truth or not he is just so forgettable. Out of the car. In the car he speaks for himself. 

Rossi at Indy was truly magical. 

And the tires?

Dang man I actually though about updating some indycar lore with pace car crashes and Robin Miller beats me to it. Still, it would be a good addition. I’ll put a pin in that one for later. 

**shutters** Turketarians. 

Whatcha cooking with RHR. Obviously butterball turkey. Come on man this is so paper thin. Can we use the limited pre-race time more effectively?  No? A sponsored piece? Sigh…

I love Will Power. What a crazy weird special crazed man. And his fat baby too. 

That was such a better command than last week! that had soul! Lets get this race on!!

These starting grid headshots make the drivers look like drug users. Heroin addicts if you will. except Zach Veach. He looks like a child. 

Nervous af.

I’m scared to blink. 

—GREEN—

Clean through 1

Crowd looks good. 

4

Ok. seems like we’ve calmed down a bit. Passing is still happening, but it’s not the crazy mess like the start. 

Wickens and The Truth engaging in a knife fight. 

8

—YELLOW—

Leist is literally on fire. Scary. He is so clearly shaken up while in the car. Very dramatic. I’m glad everyone is ok. When I said it was going to be a literally hot night I didn’t expect a car to actually catch on fire. Yikes. 

14

—GREEN—

Pretty clean and quiet. I think this is what we’re going to get for the first part of this race. 

19

Ok. Still clean but also not much movement. As I say that onboard Dixon on the inside of Kanaan. 

22

Seems like things are picking up. This is good. Still too early to understand anything about the race other than the Penske boys look strong.

30

Kanaan out with suspension damage? tough night for Super Tex. 

There has been a ton of movement. I’m really excited to see what the first round of stops hold. 

Rossi looking obviously very strong.

34

Veach may be on his way to a good night. Ill have to remember and check in on him later. 

42

Rossi and Pagenaud are engaged in a battle. That may be an understatement. 

45 

As soon as the track is cooling off it looks like Power is falling through the field. 

48 

Holy crap the lapped traffic caused a huge log jam and a very close and scary scene. The drivers really took care of each other. That’s refreshing. I hope they continue this through the evening.

51

Chaves with a blocking penalty. Repeat to the race director. Cannot take any chances tonight. 

53

As we ride onboard with Veach I guess I didn’t have to wait too long to check in on him. up to 6th. 

55

Watching Bourdais on pit exit. How is this anywhere close to safe?! This is totally ridiculous and he lost 2 laps on top of it. I am outraged at this. 

57

Power falling through the field. 

60

Wow race leader in almost early in the rotation. Did not expect this. doubly so given the 2 lap penalty for stopping under green.

62

Rossi pulling Wickens through the field with him. 

No cautions. No cautions. No cautions. 

65

These cars are sexy. That useless wing adds so much to the overall look of the car. 

68 

Leading Hondas are finally in. This could be the story of the night. 

72

This is a good race. 

Looks like Rossi lost a few positions on the last rotation. The leaders aren’t too close either. 

84

Wickens is an animal. He took that place away from Power like a veteran. 

86

Booth talking about fuel savings from the Chevys and the way Wickens is picking the Penske armada off they might be right. 

92

Lots of talk about blistering on the tires tonight. I wonder how firestone feels. We haven’t devolved into negative firestone speak yet but we seem almost close. 

95

Veach kisses the wall. these cars are difficult to drive on super speedways. 

97

Wickens to the lead. Awesome on track pass.

Newgarden thinks he has a soft tire. I wonder what the tire pressures will say though. From the slow mo of him pulling into his box it could have just been a rooted front right. 

105

The Penske armada seems to be losing strength as the sun goes down. This is one of the best aspects of Texas. The cars and teams strong at the start are often not strong at the finish. 

114

Pagenaud falling like a rock. The cars who are goers right now are an interesting bunch for sure. The booth made the comment that Penske cars always use the fronts pretty hard. All Penske drivers seem to be suffering from bad tire wear. Is this an unintended consequence to having such different styles of dampers?

120

I declare the losers to be Team Penske. No way any of these cars win. 

122

Wow the Pagenaud tire is in dangerous condition. Very yikes!!

124

Cars are dipping below 200 in the corners. I’m not totally OK with that. These cars need to be faster. More downforce AND more power. 

127

Leaders pit. 

This pit exit is awful. 

128

However, this race has been exciting. I’m surprised we haven’t had more incidents though. 

134

Hondas are coming and the Penske’s are going. 

Thinking more about tonight. There has been a lot of passing and shuffling but when the passes happen they are almost too quick. Without fight or hesitation. It’s hard to complain but something feels off maybe about this edition of Texas. 

The cars almost can’t run close yet they can still pass at the same time. I can’t quite put my finger on what is going on. 

147

The laps are clicking off really fast. 

Also with noting that Dixon has taken the lead and hasn’t really looked back. Rossi and Wickens are chasing. 

It’s very clear that running side by side outside of the actual act of making a pass is nearly impossible tonight. 

163

Wow Dixon is 12 seconds ahead of P2 on a 25 second track. We could be watching the start of an ultra dominating performance. 

Dixon is only just able to keep it above 200 in the center of T1. 

171

Interesting race dynamics tonight with pit exit, tire blisters, low grip and 6 guys on the lead lap. What a night.

174

—YELLOW—

Wickens into Carpenter into the wall. Carpenter gave Wickens approximately no room. I wonder if the spotter failed him but being a lap or more down, Ed should have moved the hell out of the way. Sure, Wickens is a rookie and may not be in the exact right spot but he also got pushed down. We should be able to run side by side in the corners here. 

5 cars on the lead lap?

OH NO FUEL ISSUES FOR ROSSI!

As long as he stays on the lead lap he’ll be fine. 

Wickens is not scared to tell it how it is. Ed taking the high road and taking the blame. Ed is a good man if not an idiot on the track sometimes. 

Also 4 of my fantasy picks have wrecked out now. Tough night man…

185

—GREEN—

Clean as it has been. 

Pagenaud made a successful move but these guys can’t get close to each other. 

190

Although Pagenaud looks to be keeping pace with Dixon, that fuel mileage will probably win out. 

195

We hear radio on the broadcast but there is no source tag so we have no idea who we’re listening to. 

196

Alright we’re seeing the best racing of the night with Rossi and Hinch! Wow! He got RHR as well. Amazing racing! The Truth comes through again. 

I would love to see Rossi chase the lead group down. 

200

He’s already well ahead. 

RHR is definitely plugging the road but it’s taking multiple laps to get around him. 

205

—YELLOW—

Big crash during commercial break. 

Where are the spotters at? I’m not going to blame Power. DeMelo is young and didn’t know you shouldn’t make a last minute pass on the exit of 4 at Texas. He put himself in a terrible position. I don’t blame Power for being upset. 

Marty Reid: Should we take fuel only? No. That’s just stupid. every time you come in tires must be taken. What the hell man, where do they get these guys. FYI I am available for a small fee. 

—GREEN—

33 to go. 

Are there 248 laps in this race? 242? I have no idea. 600 Kilometers who the hell are you in Texas making a race in metric. This is ridiculous and I refuse to keep track of laps from here on out. Ridic. Just saying. 

This is just what Rossi needed. Hopefully he can make up some positions. 

Pagenaud looking to the outside of Dixon. considering the blistering issues Pagenaud has had, He has to get it done now. 

Dixon looks worried as he is trying to break the draft on the back stretch. 

I think this is a case of Pags being good on the short run and Dixon being good in the long run. Pagenaud is already starting to fall back. Time for Rossi to capitalize. 

Power receives a post race penalty. Bull. Technically he is guilty of avoidable contact but the drivers representative in race control should have spoken up! There was no way for Power to not run his car all the way out to the wall. Race control has had a great year but this is a bungled call. At least it doesn’t affect the race. Hopefully it will be monetary of community service based. 

Rossi looking to the outside. Making a pass stick on the outside of the dogleg has been super difficult to do tonight. 

Watching Rossi try again and again on the outside of the dogleg and he has no hope of making it stick. By the time Pagenaud loses the tire, Rossi won’t have enough time to catch Dixon. 

4 seconds ahead…

Texas looks so different than it did 10 years ago. Unless the cars are nailed to the track you’ll never be able to make them closer than this. However, I wonder what a better tire could do. Kudos to Firestone for not having a blow out but tonight they walked the tightrope. They avoided a disaster to say the least. 

More tire wear would have been nice in the pack racing days but we need a more constant tire now that there isn’t enough grip to hold it flat. Not saying the tires should be perfect after a run but losing 20 mile per hour in corner apex over the course of a run is a bit much. 

Pagenaud looks to be losing his tire. 

We’ve talked about these damn tires way too much tonight. 

—CHECKERS—

Dixon. Championship engaged. He also take sole possession of P3 on the all time winners list! 

Alright, Power said he could have held the outside lane open. I’m shocked he had the grip and good on Power for being honest. 

This victory lane is much less awkward than Detroit. 

Dixon is pumped! I love seeing this kind of excitement. Dixon said he experienced no tire issues. Cool. Maybe my previous comments about Firestone may be unfounded. I do appreciate seeing the big team miss the setup window. 

Hell yea. Victory lane looks exciting tonight. Awesome vibes. 

What a night! I still say I would have like to have seen a bit more action but we had a good, if not surprisingly quiet race. I think we have a good view of the championship and it will be exciting to see how the back half of the season plays out. 

Thanks for reading!

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… Doin’ it in Detroit The Second

No Intro. Let’s do this thing. 

Rainy qualifying equals quite a few drivers into the barrier it seems. Rookie weekend? However, there is that new rain tire here this weekend and IndyCar and Firestone have a habit of bringing out new rain tires that are worse than the ones they are replacing so maybe this is a case of that? 

Sigh, I don’t want to be too hard on Firestone, but the outgoing rain tire was terrible. I hope this really is a case of … nope… no excuse for drivers of this caliber to be throwing it into the barrier. What the hell is going on?

Watching Dixon swallow the HUGE smile when mentioned with Foyt and Andretti is so endearing. Such a modest guy, 

Will Power is clearly still glowing from the Indy 500 win. I’m pretty sure he can bag the rest of the season and still be a happy happy man. 

Boo the command. I need some damn energy. These GM guys are killing me. 

Pace car into the wall. Obviously. SO… It’s going to be one of the days? How embarrassing…

At least GM makes a safe car?

What a cluster. 

DEAR GOD JON PLEASE DISTRACT ME FROM THIS CIRCUS!!!

Penske is old. 

I hope that guy doesn’t get to say the command again. 

Poor Binder. I hope he can get refired. What a crappy way to start/end the day.

We really need to get this party started. I don’t think I can listen to another random race engineer. Interviewing Ed was an excellent idea. 

Engines fired. Our national nightmare is almost over. 

At least we have a rrrrrreal pace carrrrrr drrrrrriver now. 

Fast forwarding to the start…

—GREEN—

FOR ALL THAT IS JUST AND GOOD DO NOT CRASH

Good job guys!

3 WIDE!

I think Hinch lost 3 spots in one corner. Going to need that extra fuel, eh?

Spigot in a stalled car. COME ON MAN, MY PATIENCE HAS ALREADY BEEN TESTED TODAY

Sigh. I just want to see some racing. 

—GREEN—

5

RHR with a power move on Newgarden. When he’s on he’s definitely on!

Of note, I’m glad Veach has received a real paint job. 

7

Damn Marco is HOT this weekend. Around the outside like an Andretti should do. 

The Andretti cars have been heavily featured this weekend. I wonder if this is a sign for things to come?

I think if Andretti can get around Veach, I’m sure that RHR can find a way. The booth is laughably off sometimes. 

9

Rossi is 2.5 seconds off the front. 

Hey, at least we’re watching actual racing today!

10

Managing a chasing Pagenaud while pressuring a Veach must be stressful. Also Veach has kind of driven away from RHR. I guess the booth was right? Or lucky? 

Hinch in the pits. I’m so confused. I thought he had extra fuel to burn? Maybe I wasn’t paying attention and they got to refuel. Oh well. Let’s see some racing!!

14

The Truth over 5 seconds off the front. Damn. 

16

We seem really spread out right now. Also we are in the middle of stops and I have no idea what is happening other than Rossi is killing everyone. 

Ok. Bourdais around Leist. I knew there had to be cars within touching distance of each other somewhere on this track. 

Yea, Bourdais’ car look solid. He could win, but it doesn’t feel like his day. 

19

The concrete track really takes the rubber. I find rubbered in corners to be whimsically romantic. Old school and useful. 

20

Jones having one of his patented quiet yet good days. 

22

Oh no. A spinner before the leader is able to pit! GIVE THAT KID A RAISE! He spun it around and got the hell out of the way without bothering anyone all while having a wrecked front wing hanging by a thread. 

Heads up driving from everyone. 

23

Ah. Dixon and Bourdais racing each other. Something is very right in the universe when this happens. Two of the greatest indycar drivers alive fighting for another day. Most good. Most good, indeed. 

Lots of trackside advertisement. 

Also there are security cameras on the track. IT IS DETROIT AM I RIGHT?? They’re probably race control cameras, but whatevs. 

27

Spigot retires. Sad day.

The disparate fuel strategies have me stymied on how this race is going to play out. I mean Rossi is in 3rd for goodness sakes. 

All the Schmidt cars look great, but now that we’ve seen this paint job in gold, red, pink and green, I think the gold looks the worst!

Wickens in. No idea what lap we’re on post commercial break. 

30

RHR to the lead. Sounds like 3 more laps until he pits. 

This looks like it will be a Rossi vs. RHR race and it will probably come down to how the strategies play out. Andretti Autosport is ON IT. It makes the fall of Ganassi even more pronounced. 

There is quite a bit of cottonwood in the air. I remember the Canadian Grand Prix is always contested when the cottonwoods are flying. No coincidence that we’re seeing the same thing here and the F1 race is next weekend in Montreal.  

34

RHR clicking off fastest race laps. We’ve been onboard with him for a while and this track never stops moving. I can’t imagine how tired these guys are by the end of the weekend. And with no real rest for a few weeks, recovery has got to be difficult. 

35

Rossi back to the lead. 

38

Bourdais around in T1 without hitting anything. Shocking. Bourdais seems to think there is something wrong with the left rear. It’s amazing how much these guys can feel through their asses. 

Onboard with hinch behind and I CAN”T BELIEVE HE CAN HANG ONTO IT! Bourdais man, What an animal. 

No yellow. 

40

This terribly bumpy track has just beat the Bourdais car past its breaking point. 

41

It seems like we’re going through the field without officially announcing it which makes this officially an unofficially boring race? But we really only made it to like P6 so we’ll call it an impromptu through the field because the booth can’t think of anything better to talk about. 

And then we come back from commercial break with a race rundown. Yes, I think ABC thinks this is a snoozer race. Why? Show us the racing. Talk about the action.

44

Alright. 3 stop strategy almost almost never works in IndyCar. Like, I think it has maybe worked a single time in the last 5 or 6 seasons. 

46

Very dangerous carbon fiber shard laying on the track. Yellow? It has definitely caused most of the field to come in for a pitstop. I hope we don’t see a yellow. 

46

RHR cycling back to the lead. Is today the day for a 3 stopper? 

So. Much. Cottonwood. It makes my throat itchy just seeing it. 

50

Booth informs us that the pit delta is 22 seconds and RHR holds a 14 second lead. 20 laps left, RHR could do this thing if he can turn qualifying laps for the entire rest of the race. 

52

Hitting the pits. This is exciting! I love seeing the guy who drives the fastest win these races. I hope he can pull this thing off. 18 laps to stalk The Truth. 

53

We are currently watching the leader circulate…

The island looks beautiful from the helicopter. 

Rossi starting to lose time. 

“Marco has had a tough day” Well. Ok. Maybe: Marco has had… a day?

57

We have reached the ‘to go horizon’ time for math. Don’t they know it’s late?

Waiting for the gaps to roll back around on the top of screen crawl is infuriating. A commenter on the previous race noted they like the F1 style stack on the left side of the TV. I totally agree. Especially because literally everyone has widescreen TVs. Time for a graphical rethink of IndyCar. Maybe NBC will surprise us. 

As I was writing that I missed the P1 to P2 gap again…

59

Booth says it’s down to 3.5 seconds. Most excellent. We have a race on our hands. 

RHR has been fast and Rossi doesn’t have the fuel to burn. We might be in store for some fireworks!

60

Rossi engineer: Big Picture. Eff the big picture. Let’s win a race. 

51

RHR is on top of Rossi. 

We’ve seen the simultaneous looking back and looking forward view. Interesting way to watch a race. 

52

Rossi with a lock up. He looks like he may be struggling. 

RHR is clearly taking his time. And Rossi is fighting hard. I feel bad for a guy in Rossi’s position because it really has the look of RHR playing with him to get into his head. 

53

AND ROSSI STRAIGHT LINES T3!

BOOM!!

Holy crap Rossi has a flat too. What a day!

A shocking turn of events. 

54

So RHR just cruises for the win?

16 second gap to P2. 

Yes. 

56

Also we never went yellow for that DANGEROUS CARBON FIBER shard. Kudos. 

57

The booth is already wrapping the race. ha. 

58

Feels like RHR is content just riding around behind the lapped cars. I don’t blame him at all. He has so much cushion. But not driving at 100 percent is what causes some very experienced drivers to throw it into the sand. Hopefully he can be patient and bring this puppy home. 

60

—CHECKERS—

RHR wins. Alright alright alright!!

fastest lap by a second. That’s some speed!!

Yay, I can’t wait for the most awkward victory lane in all of racingggg!!!

Rossi is a TERRIBLE interview. 

I’ll tell you, Hunter-Reay is dangerous when he gets momentum and he definitely has it right now. 

That was a fun weekend. No complaints at all other than we’re in the wrong city the weekend after the Indy 500. Indianapolis then Milwaukee. Or Texas. I’ll take Texas as well. But Detroit is in a dumb location on the schedule. Michigan International would be cool as well but that is never happening. 

At least we’re headed to Texas next week! 

Thanks for reading.

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… Doin’ it in Detroit The First

Who knows what happened to the 2 Indianapolis races. I saw them both live. Watched the 500 again that same night. I’ll get to the notes eventually. Maybe in the off season. However, even publishing this set of notes gets me farther into the season than I have in the past 2 years. You’re welcome. Let’s just enjoy Detroit and see what the future brings. 

Command is… ok. This dude was definitely coached beforehand on what to say, and he did an excellent job, it just has no soul. 

Worth noting that my TV service is youtubeTV. It’s good but very different. Sometimes it’s hard to really know what will record. Needless to say, neither of these races was captured by my cloud dvr voodoo thing. I waited and waited for someone to upload a bogus youtube version. Nothing. Then I remembered: ESPN 3! I don’t think it’s called that anymore, but a quick check of the ESPN app uncovered both Detroit races in all their HD streaming glory! 

Andretti on the pole. Ok! I’m game!

—GREEN—

OMG we made it through lap 1 without major incident. Amazing. 

Helicopter shots outside of Indy. Hell yes! ABC doing it right for their final few races. (I’m sure they had helicopters everywhere else)

2

I can’t believe that Andretti is driving away from the field!

Also in the I can’t believe file: How effing good TK and AJ Foyt Racing are doing this year. 

3

Through the T1 complex the cars look faaaast with lots of grip. The cars look great here this year. 

Booth: Dixon has Andretti is his sights. Sure. It will just take 17 laps to find a way around. 

I kid. I kid. Detroit isn’t nearly that bad anymore. 

In fairness, Dixon is definitely reeling Andretti in. 

4

Good fight for the lead, we just aren’t being shown what else is happening through the field. 

7

Newgarden in. Booth said it looks like he’s struggling. I have to wonder if he’s grasping for something today. This could be the first chink in his domination we’ve seen yet. Although I’m sure he will figure it out today. 

Fast cars are stopping with him, just not the leaders. 

9

Awesome helmet cam is awesome. 

Wickens in early from P4. Interesting. This is shaping up to be an interesting race. 

10

Now, one car at a time will stop on each lap for the rest of the race 

Ugh ABC tons of commercials. 

13

We are clearly looking at Kimball but the booth calls him Bourdais, Even though Bourdais is seen in shot while he is saying that. Yes, Ill be glad to see ABC leave. This is ridiculous. I’ll take the job. 

Bestwick cleans it up. Thank goodness. He is the only thing keeping my sanity together. 

AND WE GET TO DO IT ALL AGAIN TOMORROW!!!!1!!!

14

How is Andretti still in the lead. 

This strategy game could play out in a super interesting way, but you know the game of racecar smashy smashy still has to take place. No bets accepted yet please. 

16

Keep applying pressure and save gas at the same time. Come on. 

Triple camera view is cool. ABC is showing some cool shots today. 

19

They keep hammering this Rossi Rahal battle. Are these the closest cars on track? has the entire field crashed out? I’m confused as to why this is the only thing we’re watching. 

the grandstands look full!

21

3 Americans in the top 4. Take that people who care. 

22

Rahal: Rossi is faster because he can brake later. Does that qualify as a Captain Obvious comment?

I’m pulling so hard for Marco, but you know something will screw him. 

Or Dixon will do the thing he does and beat everyone on fuel mileage. 

24

Dixon in. Dude is in amazing position if this stop goes well. 

Well ahead. Game. Set. Dixon. 

25

Andretti defending attacks from behind. It’s all over. The little guy can’t ever handle the pressure. 

The Juncos cars have a new paint job and they look HOT. Welcome to IndyCar Mr. Juncos. 

Side note: If the broadcast is on side-by-side I get a full length commercial break, if they break away totally I get like 2 short inserted commercials and I’m back to the race. I can also fast forward through everything. A rarity for channel specific streaming services. Thank you ESPN. 

(I will not give credit to ABC)

29

Rossi around Wickens. Rossi really is The Truth. 

Checking my notes says Rossi, somehow, has not won a championship yet.

30

Andretti proceeding to fall through the field. Check that Bingo square off. 

Note: IndyCar bingo is an excellent idea. Let’s do this!

Let’s be honest, this race has been like a 4 of 10 on the excitement scale. Some passing but otherwise a really lame affair. I’m sure if I was there I would see SO MUCH ACTION. BS. I’ve been to road races. IndyCar road races at that and it’s just not like that. The best way to experience the race is on TV and this broadcast is making this race stink. 

34

Ok. Andretti hasn’t lost a spot. What a great weekend the wee boy is having!

35

The top 3 are literally 20 seconds apart. 

7 Hondas in the top 7. There you go.

36

Jones and Sato are having quiet yet good days. I forgot that no one outside of the top 5 exist. 

More shots of the beautiful Juncos car.. 

Rossi: Marco is holding me up. 

Me: …

Re: Juncos paint job. A few liveries really make the GIANT front wing elements stand out and I’m not too sure if I’m into that. The cars look less racy when the snow plow front wing is some day glow color apart from the rest of the car. 

39

Nose cam is amazing. 

Kanaan on the move. He seem newly reenergized this year. I wonder if racing for Ganassi really stole some of his fire. 

41

Watching Scott Dixon race is a pleasure. One of the few drivers I could watch turn solo laps all race long. 

42

Track is taking rubber nicely. 

43

Currently sending mind lasers into Rahal so we can see RHR make a moooove. 

Booth notes that no one has passed Andretti on the track. Ok Ok, Ill cut him some slack. Today. 

RHR and Rahal having a good ol knife fight during the commercial break. 

45 

Dixon in with Binder in the runoff. Excellent strategic call. Rahal with a super long stop. 

I’m giving Rahal a bunch of crap today but I picked him for both races in Fantasy IndyCar so I really need to be rooting him on. 

Pit stops are EXCITING!!

ZOMG RAHAL SMOKES THE WALL

—YELLOW—

Jesus that is a huuuuge hit. He clipped the curb like a ROOKIE. What the hell man. I give you an inch and you go and throw the car into the fence. Thank you. 

He’s going to be sore af tomorrow. 

Now. Will anyone be able to get a handle on Dixon? No. I doubt it. 

Flyover the river reminded me. Can I park my crowd funded yacht at Belle Isle and enjoy the race?

Replay of Rossi’s Indy 500. What an animal. 

We’ve made jokes sure, but the RHR butterball commercial just grosses me out for some reason. 

—GREEN—

Everyone has been behaving nicely. 

53

I can’t believe how fast Marco is. Who is this person?? Driving away from The Truth. 

THE CARS LOOK SO FAST IN 1 AND 2!!

The race is definitely on!

55

—YELLOW—

WOW I can’t believe that Charlie Kimball could have possibly spun anyone! He’s such a talented and amazing driver how could he have misjudged like that?

What a waste of a seat. I hope Carlin pulls their heads out of their asses and fires him. Obviously the Diabetes sponsorship goes to Daly. OBVIOUSLY. 

Ferrucci is going to feel that in the morning as well. 

The trackside repair team is doing a great job. 

Cool. Servia is the pace car driver. 

—GREEN—

60

Rossi and Marco seriously getting it done. Marco has been a treat to watch this race. 

Avoidable contact penalty for stupid Charlie Kimball. Good. 

No one is touching Dixon, just throw the checkers. 

RHR is honestly pretty close but I think that’s more a story of Dixon controlling the gap than RHR reeling him in. 

AAAHHH I CANNOT WAIT TO BE DONE WITH THE CHEEVER QUIPS. 

63

SSHHH Watching Scott Dixon drive…

64

Dust coming out of Dixon’s front brakes. 

65

We are really going to finish this race watching Scott Dixon. Lame. 

Because of that, it’s hard to write anything that isn’t just cutting up the ridiculous booth banter. I wish we could be shown something more compelling than the leader just clicking laps off until this the checkers fly. 

67

Booth is already wrapping the race. I agree. It could have been interesting, but no one was able to get close to Dixon. And honestly, if it wasn’t Dixon it would have been RHR. And without the ability to see any more than the first few cars, it makes it really difficult to understand what happened during the race at all. 

Call me a bad fan but I’m not tied to the TV during the exact moment. I don’t want to have to be signed onto twitter, listening to live radio and watching timing and scoring to really understand the race. After race day, the only thing that is left are the bootlegged copies of the race on youtube. I hope NBC wants to leave a better legacy than ABC has. 

—CHECKERS—

Dixon. Well done indeed. 

 IndyCar victory lane is almost uncomfortable. Like we’re all quietly waiting for the winner to stand up and celebrate and when they finally do like 9 people clap and cheer. It’s really painful from my seat. But Dixon is an animal. 

Marco looks like he should be driving Jack Harvey’s car. He had a great day. I’d love to see more like this from Marco. He’ll never win the championship but he could be a consistent spoiler. 

The Truth has the personality of a wet noodle. 

SATO is a great interview. He’s just so whimsical. 

Power has great helmet hair. But he also looks crazed. Like a crazy man. But I don’t think that’s a surprise. 

Good race kids, I’ll watch the other one soon! 

As always, Thanks for reading!

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… 2 Amazing Days in Barber Edition

HERE WE ARE AGAIN!! At the golf course of indycar if car’s were dimpled golfballs and racetracks were old men with shiny sticks! GORGEOUS FACILITY! I hope I get to hear that uttered in a suave Australian accent today. I’m excited and I hope you are too!!

Wet. Very Very Wet. 

Timed race and all, I wonder why we’re rushing the prerace? seems a tad silly but I guess that’s why I’m behind a keyboard. 

That was the most dreamiest and bestest command ever. Seriously though he had some pizzaz. I love it. 

Paul Tracy looks awful. 

Sweet baby jesus I hope no one drives like a fool. 

Ha. 

There is zero visibility. The air is already completely saturated during the warmup laps. I fear Dallara will be the only real winner today. 

Nose cam should be good. 

Are we going to ride onboard with the poo car all year?

Nose cam on Rossi is unrecognizable. 

I wonder if it’s actively raining. 

—GREEN—

Alright alright alright. We’re through the first few corners safely. 

Driving with a ton of respect. 

Marco is driving like an ANIMAL!! LET’S DO THIS MARCO!!

I really want to be an Andretti fan but… you know. 

3

DAMMIT MARCO!! Spinning like an idiot. This is why I’m not a fan. 

4

These guys are earning their money today. Conditions looks so treacherous. This is a totally different field than we had 5 or so years ago. 

5

Newgarden doing the clinic thing. 

Ryan Butterball-Reay siting. Turketarian. Gross. #BoarsheadForLife

Looks like Power has reeled Newgarden in by about 3 seconds. Newgarden hasn’t done a ton of wet driving in indycar. I wonder if he has just rooted his tires. Power definitely has experience with the wonky firestone wet. 

9

Chaves in with possible helmet issues. And comes out to give Bourdais issues on track. Today is not the day. Move over rook. 

Got to hand it to Veach. He’s doing a good job today. 

11

Kimball around. Obviously. And then he stalls heading to the pits. What the hell man. Kimball is the WORST. 

—YELLOW—

Also, tight shots are showing it is very much still raining. 

Listen Mr Bell, even if Jones did give Kimball the chrome horn, it’s obviously still Kimballs fault. Haven’t you been paying attention to his career?

13

Ok. I’ve been really really bad with recording the actual laps in this stream if mental diarrhea. Oh well. 

Agreed. Jones has been doing great!

Cool. Brand new rain tire in Detroit. We’ve needed a new rain tire since the old new rain tire debuted a few years ago. The old old rain tire was a well performing, super soft bespoke compound and construction just for indycar. We somehow went to a street inspired tread pattern and construction. How in the hell is that supposed to make sense for an indycar?! I hope the new rain tire gets some teeth given back to it. 

16

The announcers never talked about Power reeling in Newgarden. I wonder if his tires really were going off because the pits report that tires look good. I hope they keep a closer eye on the gap during the next stint. 

—GREEN—

17

HUGE LURCH FROM NEWGARADEN!!

OH NO POWER INTO THE WALL!!! MY FANTASY TEAM IS IN THE TOILET!!!

—YELLOW—

Sigh. What an afternoon. 

Wow it is really raining. Power didn’t have a chance. Is there too much water on the track?

Kimball complaining that he got hit. Claiming it was a rookie mistake. My opinion mr Kimball? It’s a rookie mistake to fall into the clutched of Jones. You should have driven faster/better/more skilled. Instead you got punted. 

Lap 45 will get us to half way. 

—RED—

Obviously. 

19

Rahal saying this is really dangerous. I agree. 

Funny. I just watched the infamous New Hampshire restart today. Power has poor luck man. Also Power sounds different now days…

Ok Ok. Rahal compliments the firestone rain tires. Fair enough. I’ll be excited to hear about the new tires too once we get a chance to try them out. 

Really honest comments from Newgarden. Wanting to get the race on for the fans but understanding the technical limits of the package. He just sounds really honest in his tone. It’s super refreshing. Mentions the growing rivers across the track. Worrying if the rain doesn’t slow down. 

I want to know what happened at the RLLR christmas party…

Track is looking good. 

lol no confirmation from pops about what happened to babe. 

—YELLOW—

20

TK stalled on the track. Oops. He just couldn’t get it in gear. Running now. He had me scared. I just want to get this race started. 

The track looks like it’s in pretty good shape. 

I know it eats time out of the 2 hour window but I have no issues watching the cars circulate behind the safety car in the rain. There is nothing better at clearing water form the track than racecars. 

Sounds like race control is polling the drivers. Excellent idea. Race control is in an entirely different place than it was 5 or so years ago. 2nd time I’ve said that today. That probably says something about Indycar as a whole. 

PT: Time to give it a try. I agree. one shot. Wow super windy!

23

—RED—

Lame af man. 

Chilton is shivering. Too cold. That makes me sad! Poor guy. 

Drivers out of the car. 

Everyone is saying it’s too much. 

I’m fast forwarding through the delay. 

Turketarian. ew. 

Delayed until tomorrow. Good Call. 

—TOMORROW—

Ok. Here we go for 75 minutes of fun! Sounds like Mr. Tatum is not in the house. That’s ok. I don’t blame him. 

It looks like a beautiful day today, but we have quite a green racetrack. It should be a super exciting afternoon!

The Rahal helmet cam looks like it still has water inside of it 

Chilton looks to be broken down. Too bad. I hope he can get retired and reenter the race. Carlin needs as much track time as possible. 

Sorry, but talking to Rahal in the car is ridiculous. 

Cool, Penske is fixing Power’s car. Most excellent. 

Cars refueled and push to pass reloaded. I approve. 

Ok. Since They’re not going to be showing a lap counter so we will countdown the minutes from about 77. 

—GREEN—

77 minutes to go

Clean start. Good deal, I want to see some hard clean rain today. 

Clamen DeMelo completes a smooth pass. and some slight shenanigans ensue. The guys look confident. More good news for a racy afternoon. 

73

WOW Pigot into DeMelo and really pushes him into the grass. What a crazy crazy sight. 

Power coming back out. 

Replay tells me Pigot was not far enough on the inside. 

Ok Ok Ok. We’ve seen about 7 passes from DeMelo and I think Bell told us he is 2 laps down? WTF man? It’s not that the passes aren’t good it’s that he seems like a literal accident waiting to happen. The dude makes me nervous. But he seems good. And he is in proven equipment. We’ll see I guess. 

60

Power is definitely coming back out. 

So my wonderful YouTubeTV didn’t record the actual race so I’m watching a YouTube upload. It is definitely the raw international feed so I get no commercials. Instead they’re showing me the uninterrupted feed from the track. Cool. 

Onboard with Power. the car looks ok. Not pulling to one side. He doesn’t look to be fighting the wheel either and is “only” 16 laps down. Chilton Looks to be back out as well and DeMelo is definitely 2 laps down. 

56

Watching Ed Jones circulate. The wheel ramp/sidepod interface looks awesome. 

No action taken on Pigot. How?

Straight back to commercial… BUT I HAVE THE FEED!! 

Wickens on the inside of Chaves in T5. You’re welcome. 

Just the sound of the cars circulating is wonderful. The random youtube feed can often have gems hidden within. This is a real treat considering what I was forced into. 

51

Newgarden is 8 seconds ahead. What is the rest of the field doing? 

The Binder car is still uninspiring. I have no idea why. It is an objectively good looking car. 

47

Dixon chasing down Veach. Dixon isn’t having a Dixon kind of season as of yet. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen an angry driving Dixon. Could this be the year?

The rear view bumper cam in pretty awesome as well. 

44

Rahal on Chaves during your commercial break. You’re welcome. 

Lots of action into the pits. 

Sato on Veach. Tons of action! I think Veach is falling through the field it may be time for him to pit as well. 

42

Alabammer

Veach losing more spots. What an afternoon for Mr. Poo. 

40

Leader in. Bell tells me that there is too much time to make it on fuel. Excellent. 

Even though Newgarden is stinking the from of the race up, it’s been a damn good afternoon. 

Many drivers are complaining of oversteer. 

Checking… Yes. I picked Veach this week. Fantasy league is not doing well at all. 

Watching Hinch chase RHR and I’m not sure what’s happening with the pit rotations. Is this for keeps?! Who cares. I love watching these guys. 

37

Power is leading Veach who is leading a frustrated looking train headed by Jones. This is where things could get messy. 

YES! RHR and Hinch have pitted together. I hope they continue to fight with knives/guns/whatever the kids are saying now days for position. 

Mercifully Veach comes in for tires. 

I don’t think I’ve had a moment to breath yet. 

35

Rossi around Jones. It seems like that train is working itself out and Power just drove away from it! 

Kevin Lee just referenced lap 56 or 57. Interesting. I really REALLY need to know the actual lap count. 

31

Dixon kicking it old school with no pit speed limiter. 

Commercial time suckers!!

Really they just show us a bunch of onboards, but thats totally cool. 

We’re watching Rossi really giving Hinch the business. hinch has had a hell of a busy day. 

Dixon losing electronics. That’s a nervous realization. 

26

Rain? Again? Yes please. 

More commercials. 

Now that I am aware and uninterrupted the presence of commercials is even more grating. And makes me appreciate the F1 coverage this year even more. Commercial free broadcasts are very nice. 

The director is just looking for battles on track. And without the commentators he is free to choose anything he wants. 

Dixon around Pagenaud on the outside. Damn. 

22

Newgarden with a 27 second lead. Crushing. When you’re on you’re on. 

Chilton looks to have lost another 10 laps as well. It’ll be interesting to hear about his day. 

21

Drops on the camera. 

Water on the track. Decisions Decisions. 

18

Commercials. 

Onboard with Newgarden and he looks really stable. 

Seems like there’s a lot of radio chatter about tires and rain. I’m sure it’s tense up and down pit lane. 

14

WOW Newgarden in for rains. Race winning call?

There is so much rain on the camera lenses, but the tires still look warm and grippy. At least for now. 

Newgarden is getting passed left and right. He may not have the race winning tactic. 

Bourdais may have been gifted this race. 

I’m really starting to get the butterflies for Bourdais!! 

If I were Bourdais I would not come in. The race is in his hands. Checkers or wreckers territory for sure. The only thing Bourdais needs to worry about is consolidating his Champcar legacy and this is the way to do it. This could be a HEROIC day for him. 

8

Bourdais: One more lap like this and I’m off. 

7

Bourdais in. ugh fine. Whatever. Congrats to Cindric and Newgarden on another stupid race winning decision. 

6

Pigot around. What a bad day he’s had. 

4

Newgarden with a 20 second lead. Damn son this is a career defining day. Wet or dry this guy was able to pull out the largest honest lead I have ever seen in indycar. 

Wickens chasing down Hinch. Most excellent, I want to see some Canadian on Canadian aggression. 

2 

What a probable anticlimactic end to a surprisingly enthralling sprint race. 

I don’t think they ever mentioned beautiful facility. It has probably been retired as a past relic. 

—CHECKERS—

Newgarden. 

Good finish for Bourdais and Dixon. What a wild afternoon. Well, it was really quite the weekend. I can’t believe we never went yellow today. Definitely a testament to the skill of the drivers. 

Cool. Onboard with Newgarden into victory lane to end the feed. 

Thank you for watching and I hope you enjoyed our afternoon together! Onto my pair of home races in Indianapolis! Hopefully we have a warmer and drier race than we experienced this weekend. 

Is it May yet?

Almost. 

Eric Hall

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Unfiltered Race Notes… Butterball On My Mind Edition

Welcome to Long Beach! A few days late but never ever too short, it’s everyones favorite blogger hack indycar article!! I’ll tell you what, I’ve really enjoyed the 2018 season so far. The cars are racing great and the competition has been hot. I have literally 0 complaints thus far save for maybe not enough anger, but then again it’s still quite early in the season.

Anyway, Let’s get this thing going. Starting the DVR on a Dan Gurney retrospective. I need to go back and check that whole thing out.

Not surprising, but Newgarden is always so well spoken.

Historic Long Beach footage in the intro. Very well done.

Hi to my family at home. Excellent command!!

Here we goooooo

Cars are almost touching 180 MPH heading into T1. Giving the engines a few more horses to let them to crack 190 would be perfect. I’m excited to see the speeds on the Indy road course.

First Ryan Butterball-Reay commercial. Turketarians.

James Hinchcliffe Honda commercial. Ok. That one isn’t too bad.

The headshots are sometimes quite ridiculous. It may be previous prejudice but Rahal’s looks particularly ridiculous.

Veech in the poo car again.

It always makes me laugh when people would make fun of indycar for ‘racing in parking lots’ when the last few corners of the most storied street course in North America runs through parking lots. har.

—GREEN—

Terrible start. But it always is at Long Beach.

Pagenaud into the wall. It’s been a pretty clean year for starts. I won’t hold this against the guys.

—YELLOW—

Pagenaud looks very broken. Short day for him and the replay looks like Rahal just dumped him. too bad.

PT postulates that we will see cars hitting the mid 180s in the tow with push-to-pass. Nice.

RHR looks to have a broken front wing.

Also I have no idea what lap it is.

And he’s in for a new nose.

5

—GREEN—

Clean restart. Let’s get this race going.

The Truth is leading. I expect him to layethe the smack today.

Drive through penalty for Rahal. Definitely a punishment that does not fit the crime.

7

Wickens with a nice move on Kanaan. I’m so excited to see Wickens. He has a huge year ahead of him. There are absolutely no expectations on him and he is just crushing everyone.

9

Marco is the biggest mover of the race. Impressive. I want him to succeed so so bad but he is the definition of someone being their own worst enemy.

10

Good on Graham for not complaining about the penalty. Just very matter of fact about the systemic lack of rear grip.

Insert Sato crashing because of rear grip joke.

11

Back to Rossi KILLING THE FIELD

14

First of the 3 stoppers. I always respect the 3 stop strategy. No fuel savings, just solid strong and fast driving. The way racing should be.

15

RHR completes the pass. This aerokit seems to be doing its job. We’ve already seen a fair amount of action today.

17

Of course as I say that we see Rossi having trouble getting around a lapped car. I’m not making any judgments yet. Except that the cars look cooool.

18

Yes. I am impressed. Sato was able to complete a clean pass. Something is working today.

20

I’ll give it to Carlin. They’re doing a hell of a job with the modest at best talent they have wheeling the cars for them. Give them a few years and a new driver and they’ll be right up front.

24

Helicopter shots always remind me to remind you to donate to my buy-a-yacht-to-sail-to-races fund. Please and thank you. Share information will be provided later.

25

Of course the race I finally choose Wickens for fantasy he is having engine issues. Thanks. Wow that sounds quite bad on the replay. It may be a long day for young Wickens.

AAAHHHH

As I write this he comes back into the pits. His day is over. Body work coming off. Not a great sign.

28

Nose cam is amazing. Thank you Bourdais and Honda.

29

The pit rotation happening right now is very intriguing.

31

Savage move by Dixon to get ahead of Power in the pits.

32

Resetting the race sees Rossi in front. Again. The race is clearly for 2nd. As always I’ll pull for Bourdais thank you very much.

36

Through the field. Hmm. I thought they discontinued this. I’m honestly surprised it’s making a comeback today as this has been a very interesting race! I won’t rate this as a bad race solely because of the appearance of through the field. I wonder if the network is compelled to do it because of sponsors and whatnot.

37

The black Fuzzies car looks hot.

43

—YELLOW—

Kaiser stopped in the T1 runoff. Ok ok, the car is growing on me. I’m enjoying the clean and bold colors of the livery.

Not that the race was bad, it wasn’t at all, but the yellow at Long Beach is always nice.

47

—GREEN—

Rossi is gone.

3 lapped cars ahead of P2 Dixon. Frustrating but I understand why they have the right to be there.

48

BOURDAIS WITH THE MOVE OF THE RACE!!

Who says you can’t pass at long beach?!

Let’s see if he can hunt down Rossi.

50

No. It looks like Bourdais has actually lost time to Rossi. It almost seems like Rossi can control the gap at will today.

Sato with the worst luck in the paddock having more issues in the pits.

51

NBCSN is really on the ball with showing the passes. Say what you will about commentary but they do a hell of a good job showing what happens during the race.

53

Action all day long. Echoing what I said earlier I could be tempted to say this has been a better race than St. Pete, but we know ABC does not do a good job and St. Pete was a much better race than we saw.

54

Bourdais must give the position back. Lame.

55

And he gets the position right back. Bourdais is the man. Booth notes that Bourdais has lost time. I see it at about 2 seconds. Heartbreaking. We need another yellow. It’s not that I think that anyone can outrace Rossi, it’s that a win at Long Beach must be a stressful undertaking and he has had a quiet race today.

58

Bourdais car looks like an angry bumble bee.

Watching Bourdais and Dixon battle is always a treat. It’s easy to forget these two guys are numbers 4 and 6 on the all time wins list. much respect.

59

King gets a well deserved shout out for an excellent day. Pigot hasn’t been great.

60

—YELLOW—

Clamen Demelo into the wall.

Bourdais, Dixon and a few others get caught out and still take a pit stop at probable penalty. what a race changer.

I’m noticing the ticker gives a lap count as well as a laps left count. I’ll take full credit for continual complaining about being forced to do math. Thank you. And you’re welcome.

63

Mike Hull is a smooth cat. We’ll see if he is vindicated.

65

King had to come in for a brake bleed. That is weird as hell man. I wonder what the whole story behind that is.

Kimball +15 on the day. Yea, That’ll shut me up.

66

—GREEN—

Drive through for Dixon. All is right in the world. Bad call from Mr. Hull.

Seems as though he is going to take as much time as he can until he takes his penalty.

67

Dixon take the drive through.

Picked Jones this week. Cha Ching. I’m shocked at how hard of a time Chilton had in Ganassi equipment.

70

Rahal inside of Andretti. Andretti isn’t having an awful day at all.

71

—YELLOW—

Bourdais around in the hairpin complete with ensuing pileup. Looks like King was the aggressor. Yikes man, weren’t we just throwing platitude on you? still a rookie…

I think I just heard Bell call Power ‘slick willy p-ball’ I’m not sure what to think of that.

I’m liking these late race shootouts. Power doesn’t have anything to lose, I’d love to see him go for it. Also, if P2 took out P1 we may see some of that good ol indycar passion from the drivers.

How is Zach Veach in P4?

75

—GREEN—

Rossi is untouchable.

Veach is like 47 pounds how has he been able to wrestle the car for as long as he has?!

77

RHR has quite a broken car. replay?

I see the debris flag.

78

Power is very very close. This needs to happen! I definitely used to root against Power, but his fall from grace has been humbling. Watching him rebuild has been exciting. It’s time for another win.

81

I don’t think Power can do this.

All the SPM cars look super hot. especially the Harvey car.

82

Theres so much action that the director can’t decide which camera to focus on.

83

Rossi has been clinical. There wasn’t a single person that could touch him today. He is definitely F1s loss.

85

—CHECKERS—

ROSSI!! THE TRUTH!!

Good to see that Andretti Autosport still has it. Ugh, say what you will but Rossi has the personality of a wet noodle.

Leave it to Power to always find a way to complain about something. Today it was push to pass. And for the record he is wrong. The current system is the only true and fair way to dole out p2p.

Babe is looking older this year. Maybe that will translate into better and better results. P3 in the point.

alright alright. This has been fun. Happy Sunday. Lets do this again in Barber!

Eric Hall

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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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Unfiltered Race Notes: St. Pete is Amazing Edition

Race Notes: 2018 st pete edition.

Hey HEY hey! Here we are again. It’s been almost over a year since we last spoke…Sorry. We find ourselves kicking off the 2018 season on ABC. Yay? Well. We will see. 2017 started off well at anotherindycarblogworldheadquarters but that quickly fell apart, but let’s see if we can make 2018 more successful. As always, no promises of anything.

—Pre-Race—

Oh yes Jan I missed you oh so much. I could listen to that man muse about race cars all day. Bestwick! Cheever and Goodyear. Oh boy. I can’t believe it’s already been almost over a year. I don’t miss you two at all.

Damn that car looks good. I hope it races just as good.

HELIO!! YES!! THATS HOW YOU DO THE COMMAND!!

Lol the bastard two-seater that is a cross between the DW12 kit and the Honda kit. Ridiculous.

OMG THE NOSECONE VIEW!! THANK YOU TV GODS!!

—GREEN—

1

Will Power around. I can’t believe he didn’t get run over. Good on all the drivers for taking care of each other.

TK around and pulling an Austin Powers. That was awkward.

Damn you Bestwick for stealing my lines.

3

Woah Power smoked the wall.

Kimball stalled. What a damn rookie. New team, new year same ‘ol Charlie.

—Yellow—

4

Hmm. Veach inside of TK for the early spin. Probably should have let TK have that one, it’s just too early in the race/season/career for Veach to be doing that.

I’ll tell ya, those cars look sweeeeet. That open roll hoop is slick and those exposed rear tires look super tough. Sooooooo, does this mean ChampCar really won? I’m confused what opinion I’m supposed to have this year.

6

—GREEN—

Clean restart. Well done. I remember plenty of years writing about how embarrassed I was to be a fan because of the downright atrocious driving at St. Pete.

7

—YELLOW—

SATO KAMIKAZE!!

You know, I could repeat what I said about Kimball. But eff that. 500 winner and he’s SATO! Keep at it, my man. That move will stick one of these days.

Jordan King P1 Cool.

The LED panels look new for 2018.

11

—GREEN—

Dixon around 2. Iceman Cometh

Helio in the booth. That’s a voice I can get behind.

12

Rossi is good. So. So. Good.

I declare Robert Wickens to be the 2018 sleeper. Watch out. But given his resume I don’t think that is really news to anyone.

13

I’m not too sure I like the Harding Racing paint scheme. It looks… soft.

We need to settle into this race. I hope we can click some laps off.

15

Sorry. I was enthralled by Helio. I already miss that guy.

Rossi and Wickens have quite the gap. It would be amazing to see the season come down to these two guys. We are primed for new blood at the top this season.

19

Marco looks to be the first taker? It’s kind of early but he kind of sucks so he may be out of tire. 2018 looks to be more of the same for many drivers in spite of new scenery.

21

Ok. Newgarden in. Sorry Marco. I kind of take it back and will wait until your suckage is confirmed before I rake you over the coals again.

23

And now we see Marco make an honest to goodness on track pass. Ugh. Double sorry Marco, that was a good move.

Stall for Pagenaud. Thats not quite Penske Perfect.

25

Without the bumper, the cars looks so short.

28

I really appreciate seeing the debris flag. Too many yellows are thrown in indycar. I know, I know… Wont you just think of the drivers?! Yes. Safety. Fine Line. I don’t know where that line is but I appreciate not going yellow for these pieces of carbon fiber. Good call.

Ed Jones is driving like a veteran. I’m excited to see more of him this year and to see if Chip found another star driver.

29

—YELLOW—

Leist into the wall after sliding through the corner.

Also AJ Foyt does not look good But I’m glad he can still make it to the track.

The helicopter shot always reminds me to remind you to donate to my buy a yacht fund. St. Pete, Long Beach, even Monoco. EVERYONE WHO DONATES IS WELCOME TO YACHT ALONG WITH ME!

33

The nose cone cam is so evocative. That view minus the wheel pods is such a classic view. It really brings goosebumps on.

34

—GREEN—

Bourdais has always been quoted saying that he liked a pushy car so I think I’m surprised to see him up front considering all reports say this iteration of an indycar is super loose. But you don’t become a 4x champion without being an animal. There has been plenty of SeaBass love written here through the years so don’t give me that hater crap. I picked him in fantasy this week so YES!

The drivers are treating each other with much respect today. This restart is everything we want from indycar racing. Close, clean and crazy.

—YELLOW—

35

Sato into the unluckiest man at St. Pete Scott Dixon. Replay. OH MY GOD DIXON WHAT ARE YOU DOING?! They always say you make your own luck…

Oh yea, I remember Graham Rahal having the American Flag on his LED panel in testing. Those are definitely new. They look really good.

37

Real talk, Bourdais’ livery is ridiculous, but I think it wraps around the so awesomely bad spectrum that is bounces back into being good.

39

—GREEN—

Marco in 4th. Dammit why is he doing such good today, I’m not scheduled to start rooting for him until mid-May.

40

—YELLOW—

Harvey into the dirt with damage to the front wing, Newgarden into the pits with a flat rear. Coincidence? replay incoming…

The helmet-cam is sick.

Harvey with damage to the rear. What the hell was I looking at before? I blame the season opening excitement.

43

Looks like half the field came in, this should mix things up a bit. This has been a pretty good race so far. Yes. I have been entertained. However, again, this race has no rhythm. Too many yellows, but somehow the drivers are taking care of each other while still acting like idiots. Well done indycar drivers, oh how I’ve missed you.

Replay shows flat right rear caused the accident. So Newgarden and Harvey both have flat rear tires? What is going on? Maybe I should take back what I said about those debris flags…

We see the helmet cam mounted on Hinchcliffe’s head. I wonder how much drag that’s worth. Probably not enough to worry on a street circuit, but I bet it matters enough to make it a hard choice to carry one at a super speedway.

—GREEN—

46

Marco really trying to push into P3. What the hell man. Where have you been your whole career?

47

We see the first telemetry readout of the season. In ABC’s defense, theirs is really good. Accurate and fast. I appreciate it each year. I wonder what NBC is going to bring to the table this year.

48

Quite a lot of movement in the midfield. Good racing.

53

Woah, I was enthralled by racecar. They look so so very good. You can see the acceleration and the movement in every part of the corner. This is really good stuff.

55

Sounds like we have 3 and 4 stop strategies happening right now. For as much racing as I’ve watched in my life, I still have a hard time keeping the fuel strategies in my head without the help of the booth. Really, I’m in it for the amazing racing.

56

I know these cars have over 1000 pounds less downforce I know they are slower mid-corner but they look really nimble this year.

61

Stops happening. I think it goes without saying but all the SPM cars look really really slick. I approve.

62

I would like to hear from a rear tire changer about the differences in changing tires this year without the bumper. I wonder if these are the first live changes for someone on a car with no bumper?

65

A bit over half way and I think we have fallen into a good pace for this race. We are definitely seeing a log jam from 10th on back. I’m glad we’re finally clicking off laps.

69

Is this race going to come down to a knife fight between Bourdais, Rossi and Wickens?

Dale Coyne looks as cool as a cucumber on the timing stand. He gives Wickens the go ahead to pounce on Bourdais. Very yes.

71

Good racing between Bourdais and Wickens. Robert is definitely putting his mark on indycar  racing today.

73

References to time of push to pass left. I forgot we went to a bank of time instead of a specific number of pushes per race. I think this is the much better way of handling the push to pass system.

Excellent slow-mo.

Real talk: ABC is doing a good job today.

77

As soon as Bourdais gets caught in traffic he comes into the pits. Coyne is a strategic master. Today could be the day. Again. I’m on board.

78

Jan says: come in this lap and save fuel to make it to the end. Unless there’s a caution. I mean, this is indycar, anything is possible.

Pit lane speeding violation for Dixon. What the hell man? First you crash into Sato and now you’re a speeder? You never hear about pit lane speed violations. We have a button for goodness sakes. WHAT ARE YOU DOING MAN?!

80

First real shot of the Harding Racing car. The paint isn’t great. It definitely looked better on twitter than in the Florida sun. I’m interested to see it in the flesh during the Month of May.

81

Yikes, The booth mentions lack of cautions. Don’t they know better? I know I mentioned lack of cautions as well, but I’m not in the dang booth. special privileges and whatnot.

84

Nice. Bourdais, Rossi and Wickens almost in the same camera shot.

85

I think I am literally salivating while looking at these cars. So so sexy.

We’re onboard with RHR. You can really see the acceleration. Everything is wonderful. I love everything and kittens and rainbows and baby baby seals. It’s really amazing now the look of the car changes everything. Also we can just wait a week month and see what we’re thinking after Phoenix.

21 to go. I hate the change over.

90

The jaws music is currently playing inside the helmet of wunderboy Alex Rossi. This is most excellent.

I definitely want Wickens to win. I want to see a kick ass pass for the lead more. Let’s do this.

92

Nose to tail.

Bourdais hat completely left the picture.

Two Americans, two Canadians in the top five. Cool.

96

Ed Jones give Dixon approximately 600 feet for his pass. That’s a good teammate.

97

Rossi: I’m waiting. Wow. Part of me thinks thats bad ass. Part of me thinks if you’re waiting you’ve already waited to make a move. Is it already too late?

98

AS I’M SAYING THAT ROSSI LOCKS THEM UP!! Sigh. What a rookie move. Kimball was in the shot so let’s blame him until video proves otherwise.

Yes. it seems like waiting was a bad idea.

Replay shows Rossi slid through on his own. Lame. He may be the truth but he still has some stuff to learn.

101

–YELLOW–

Binder slides into the tires. Sounds like he may be tired. That’s alright rookie, I appreciate this late race yellow. Let’s buckle up and see what happens. There’s a ton of firepower in the top five.

As we’re waiting for the green I’m realizing that we have yet to go through the field. By the patented is-this-a-good-race-o-meter this is a good race. A 100% good race.

Lapped cars driving through. I’m sure this is some last few laps yellow rule and I approve. Get those guys out of there and let them race their own race together.

Booth says restart coming. Lights are still flashing on the pace car. What’s really happening?

Wave off. I think I knew before the booth? I wonder what the reasoning is?

106

–GREEN–

–YELLOW–

DAMMIT MAX CHILTON WHY WHY WHY. This could be quick.

107

Word on the street is we go green now. Good decision.

108

–GREEN—

Rossi into Wickens. Was it worth it Rossi?! Holy cow. I cannot believe we just saw that happen.

–YELLOW-

Replay shows… It was a racing incident. I really think this was all good.

110

—Checkers—

Bourdais wins and we are rewarded with burnouts. Most good… Most good!

Ok. Rossi. He has earned the right to make this move. He’s a winner and a future champion. However, he needs to be penalized. You cant drive over the winner with 1 lap to go in any circumstance and not receive a penalty.

Good race. Two thumbs up. The kick preformed amazing and the race went very well. I can’t wait for more. Onto Phoenix!

Eric Hall

Posted in Unfiltered Race Notes | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment