This morning, Chip Ganassi Racing Teams announced that Graham Rahal and Charlie Kimball would be their drivers in 2011. As has been rumored, this will be a satellite team in addition to Target Chip Ganassi Racing which will continue to field Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon as their drivers. Don Prudhomme’s former NHRA shop out of Brownsburg, Indiana will play host to this newly formed team. Rahal Graham Rahal found himself in utter turmoil last offseason, as his McDonald’s sponsorship at Newman Haas completely disappeared. But almost immediately, rumors started spreading…Read More
INDYCAR – “It’s a New Track Record”, PR Bluff or Potential Reality?
Nothing tends to stir up a gaggle of Indy 500 fans more than hearing a recording of Tom Carnegie’s iconic pipes announcing another amazing feat of man and machine. Well, except that no new speed records have been set at Indy since 1996 maybe. Arie Luyendyk set the single lap record at 237.498 mph and the four lap average record at 236.986 that year. And since then, there has been a constant dialog between fans, series officials and media about whether 237+ is safe at IMS for the drivers and…Read More
INDYCAR – On Sponsorships, Cherry Picking and Penske
There has been a litany of sponsorship announcements in the last few days coming from the Penske camp. First we heard of the Shell/Penzoil deal for Helio, then comes word that Meijer had jumped ship from Andretti, and today the announcement that IZOD has joined up with the Captain. Danny Sullivan once said that “When the music stops, Roger always has a chair.” Apparently its Michael Andretti’s. One would have to wonder what the mood is like in the Andretti Autosport shop the last few weeks. Shell/Penzoil’s return to open…Read More
IndyCar – Chevy is Back! Momentum Baby!
This past week has been a mounting crescendo of articles coming out from increasingly reliable sources making the claim that GM would be back in IndyCar for 2012. Autoextremist, Autoblog, Speed, Autosport and now Curt Cavin at the venerable Indianapolis Star have all weighed in. The rumor can be put to bed. There will be an announcement made at the IMS Hall of Fame Museum on Friday at 10am EST welcoming Chevy back into the fold for 2012. Other parts of this rumor have indicated that Chip Ganassi will be…Read More
IndyCar – Behold, The New Champions Trophy (Gasp!)
The IZOD IndyCar Series unveiled their new champion’s trophy yesterday at a poolside party with Dario Franchitti, Will Power and a host of IZOD ladies. Dario and Will were in attendance due to winning the Oval and Road Course championship trophies respectively. The IICS had to change their champion’s trophy from the old chrome cup emblazoned with “Indy Racing League” to a more suitable object that didn’t use the now defunct moniker. But I think they may have been better off using an angle grinder on the old trophy to…Read More
IndyCar – 2011 Schedule and Kentucky
Word on the Kentucky broadcast was that the 2011 schedule will be announced on Friday. Also hinted by Jenkins was that a very popular track would be added back to the schedule, which makes me think that a deal has been done to bring Milwaukee back. YAY! So, what we know about next years schedule right now is that it will be the same as this years schedule except: Kansas, Chicago, Homestead and Watkins Glenn have been removed and Milwaukee, Baltimore and New Hampshire have been added. Also, it sounds…Read More
IndyCar – Fumes Win the Day at Kentucky
It came down to fuel strategy at Kentucky, as Helio Castroneves went to the back of the lead pack on a yellow flag pitstop when the team paused to inspect a wheel nut. Before the track went green, the Tim Cindric called Helio in again to top off his fuel so he could go longer than anyone else. This gamble turned out to win big as Helio was able to nurse it home for the win on fumes as all the other leaders had to pit with 4 or 5…Read More
IndyCar – Ed Carpenter Takes Kentucky Pole…. ?!
“Shocking” is the word many would pick to describe this situation, but maybe not so much when you look at how Dan finished at Kentucky last year and how well both Panther Racing cars did last weekend at Chicago. Ed has been a stalwart finisher at Indy and no slouch on the ovals for the last few seasons, but the downgrading of Vision Racing from full season team to occasional sponsor has certainly not helped his cause. Ed’s fight with Briscoe at Kentucky has to go down as one of…Read More
F1 – How Can Austin Succeed Where Indy Failed
McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh recently made his feelings known about the return of the USGP to Austin, Texas in a phone interview with Autosport. His most poignant statement was “I think Formula 1 is used to being poured into markets that want us badly there…. North America frankly doesn’t need Formula 1, so I think it’s for us to go and prove to North America that this is an interesting sport and spectacle and something that it’s worthwhile them taking an interest in.” The US is a stick and…Read More