Sunday, May 26, 2013

97th Indianapolis 500: First Impressions

1. Tony Kanaan has won the Indianapolis 500. He deserves it. I can't think of a person who is disappointed to see Kanaan finally get this win.

2. Record breaking day. Most lead changes in the Indianapolis 500, most different leaders in the Indianapolis 500, fastest Indianapolis 500 in history.

3. It is great seeing how happy everyone is for Kanaan. And it was great to see Alex Zanardi there to celebrate.

4. Rough break for Ryan Hunter-Reay. But third is still good.

5. I think Carlos Muñoz has a future in IndyCar.

6. If somebody had a problem with today's race then I don't know what we can do to make the racing better for them.

7. Great day for Marco Andretti and Justin Wilson.

8. I will repeat. Great day for Justin Wilson. THE BEST FINISHING HONDA IN FIFTH!

9. Helio Castroneves may have been the best finishing Penske, but AJ Allmendinger had the best race of any of the Penske drivers. And to think, Tony Stewart was offered the seat given to Allmendinger.

10. Great day for Simon Pagenaud and Charlie Kimball. 8th and 9th respectively.

11. Ed Carpenter got a nice top ten. I bet he wishes he did better.

12. Tough break for Dario Franchitti.

13. I am not sure eleventh will save the day for Oriol Serviá and Dreyer and Reinbold Racing but damn did they give it their all.

14. A good day for Ryan Briscoe in twelfth.

15. Ana Beatriz finished fifteenth in an under-powered Dale Coyne car. Anyone think she is a back marker now?

16. Good day for Tristan Vautier who finished 16th.

17. As of lap 120, EJ Viso has had a great day. And then he stalled in the pit lane.

18. Townsend Bell deserved better.

19. By the way, there is a doubleheader at Belle Isle starting in six days.

20. Rahal-Letterman-Lanigan needs a veteran. Oriol Serviá would be a great hire.

21. Those who need a break after today: Graham Rahal, Josef Newgarden, Franchitti, Sébastien Bourdais, JR Hildebrand, Honda.

22. People who I hope we get to see more of after today: Conor Daly (on a road or street course), Buddy Lazier (either behind the wheel or with someone else driving his car), Katherine Legge, Ryan Briscoe.

23. It was great to see a clean race, most pit stops coming under green flag conditions and wonderful racing and passing on a 2.5 mile oval that was not fabricated.

24. My blood pressure is finally reaching a healthy level.

25. Lindsay Czarniak did a great job. She should keep the host job for next year and maybe should be added to host all IndyCar races on ABC (although that seems unlikely).

26. ABC did a very good job. I sense a renewed interest from them in the Indianapolis 500. Now if only we can renew interest for all IndyCar races, the series would be sitting pretty.

27. A few empty seats at the Speedway today. Here is an idea with the Speedway's decision to raise ticket prices: Once the Speedway "breaks even," next objective should be to fill the place and ticket should see a reduction in price. Or allow fans with general admission tickets to fill in available grandstand seats if they choose to do so. I am sure there are logistical problems to both of my ideas but they should at least be explored.

28. We need less talk about saving fuel from the commentators and less talk of how it hurts to be leading (it happened early in the broadcast and wasn't really mentioned again after the first round of pit stops but it was still irritating). Does the Speedway still do the bonus for each lap led? If they don't, find a sponsor and let's bring it back.

29. I love the in-car cameras on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app. Hopefully the actually race coverage for the remaining IndyCar races on ABC will be available.

30. With next year being the third year for these engines, maybe IndyCar should permanently turn up the boost. And I'm not talking only 10 kPa. Maybe look investigate how the engine does with an increase of 30-50 kPa.

31. Another year and another request to bring the apron back please.

32. For all the talk of financial issues with teams and complaints about the low attendance numbers for practice days and how qualifying doesn't sell out anymore, it was a great month of May and though I am sad it is over, let's do the best we can to stay this excited for IndyCar through June, July, August, September, October, November, December, January, February, March and April.

33. 364 days until the 98th Indianapolis 500.