Indy 500 = Amateur Hour?


#1

What is the deal with the Indy 500? Is anyone else watching this? I haven’t watch U.S. open-wheel racing in years (whoever is running their organization this week), now I remember why. I got up at 5:30 this morning to watch monaco, then decided to watch the indy 500, the difference is amazing. This looks like weekend club racing. Why can’t the U.S. put together a credible open-wheel racing series?



Rant over.


#2

because NASCAR.(and I,m rolling while I’m writing this) is the KING of media in the U.S.A and God forbid,we let some open wheel stuff in our heads,even though FAR superior,in SPEED and HANDELING, NOT to mention driver SKILL.

we have big lumpy pieces of crap in the states,and the best way to make nascar crap look stellar,is of course to make indy look like s…t.

theres no stock car BUILT THAT WILL EVER COME CLOSE TO A TRUE F-1 CAR,and thats that.


#3

I don’t know why, but these guys made all kinds of dumb driving and pit errors during the race. How hard is it to turn left all day without driving into a wall? I also don’t understand why they are running 10K rpm engines in these things, that’s pretty low tech stuff.


#4

monaco would have been the best bet.10k,keeps you watching. marketing. American logic.

just like our cars,30k and brakes are needed,waterpumps at 38k,WHY WHY WHY, ohhhh! that would be to get more money. on a regular basis.

JUST PLAIN WRONG,and theft.


#5

Less skilled drivers in NASCAR? Not really. You have to take into account that stock cars do not handle or brake nearly as well as open wheel racecars, because of that they are more difficult to drive. How many lead changes do you see in an average F1 race? No doubt F1 cars are techincal marvels but threre is little actual racing that goes on during an F1 event. If open wheel racing is to survive in the U.S. the IRL has to stop being basically a spec racing series (yes I know that’s what NASCAR pretty much is these days). Back before the IRL was a glint in Tony George’s eye, the Indy 500 was arguably the most prestigous race in the world. You had drivers from all over th world come to race. You had turbocharged cars, non-turbo cars, OHC engines, OHV, engines, and several chassis to choose from. If they got back to that and lured some higher profile drivers things would be better.


#6

The simple answer is, in 1979 at Daytona Bobby Allison and Cale Yarborough put on one hell of a show and since then, Indy hasn’t been able to keep up.

The only chance open wheel racing has to recover itself in this country is if knuckle head Brian France decides to take Nascar global. In which case, I believe people like Bruton Smith and Jack Roush might form an alliance for a second stock car series.

As far as the open wheel drivers compared to stock car drivers, the best I thought in open wheel are now running Nascar, and none of them are doing worth 3 hoots. Montoya, Hornish, Franchiti, Carontier (yeah, I know that ain’t spelled right)

Skip


#7

yes less skilled,F-1 is not IRL,nor is indy league.

F-1 is its own

restrictor plates on NASCAR,JOKE,i remember when the best talent won.and product.not all in some stupid bunch,so as all can read the dumb ads.he who won had a great team .but please do not put F-1 cars in the same league.or the drivers.

and yes way less skilled drivers in NASCAR(they would die in an F-1 car(whithout a whole lot of seat time.


#8

I am sure there could be a football designed that could be thrown, or kicked twice as far as the current one used. Would this make the game of football any better? Nascar chooses to limit the technology for a reason. Why do you think the pit crew needs to unsrew five lug nuts per tire instead of only one? Its part of the game.


#9

Their have been a few retired F1 drivers in NASCAR (because they couldn’t cut it in F1 anymore and the money is decent), but not even those guys show up in indy racing anymore (I had never even heard of any of the drivers in today’s indy 500 before). I do understand that NASCAR is nothing more than low budget spec racing now (Personally, I haven’t bothered watching it since the quit using real production cars). But I also understand that NASCAR is perfect for the attention span of american sports fans (just throw a yellow flag every five minutes to bunch up the field). It’s almost as bad as watching american football; but it’s good for TV, easy to bet on, and sells lots of soap. At least they understand what they are, who their audience is, and how to cash in on it (sorta like a combination of professional wrestling and reality TV personalities with some action thrown in; something for the whole family). It doesn’t interest me at all, but at least it’s good business.

Back when I paid some attention to indy car racing (about 20 years ago), it seemed to have a little more going on, and it was a lot closer to state of the art (drivers, crews, tracks, and equipment). I was really surprised at how bush league it has actually become (and what is the deal with 10K rpm spec engines, it this 1965 or something?). I don’t know if they can’t attract top drivers/crews, or the current car formula isn’t working, or the indy track is just obsolete; but they better do something different if they want to survive. I agree that the indy 500 race was something special in its prime, now it’s just embarrassing. They need to either fix it or turn it into a museum. Maybe there just isn’t room for real open wheel racing in the U.S. anymore, there certainly isn’t any serious open wheel development racing left in the U.S.


#10

“I am sure there could be a football designed that could be thrown, or kicked twice as far as the current one used. Would this make the game of football any better? Nascar chooses to limit the technology for a reason. Why do you think the pit crew needs to unsrew five lug nuts per tire instead of only one? Its part of the game.”

I don’t know, I have never actually watched an entire football game (unless you count the time in college when I got drunk and couldn’t walk well enough to leave). IMHO, the current version of NASCAR is just about as interesting as american football.


#11

Have you looked at the current NASCAR drivers? They look like a beer softball team. Most of them wouldn’t survive 10 minutes in a F1 car (or even an indy car), the g-forces would literally kill them. Actually, many of them wouldn’t even fit in a current F1 car without losing 30 pounds (but they are good at doing TV commercials). You are comparing the junior varsity softball team from my daughter’s high school to the yankees.


#12

It’s all become an over-commercialized bore to me; and especially NASCAR.
It seems like every other sentence out of a drivers mouth is “Well, our (fill in the blank with the name of the sponsor) Chevrolet/Ford/Dodge/Toyota has really been running well in practice this week…”

I pretty much stick with drag racing, a nearby SCCA road race course, or even the local 3/8 miles dirt track. There’s less garbage and more excitement.
Even NASCAR guy Tony Stewart hits the dirt track Chili Bowl held in Tulsa every year because according to him; fewer rules/restrictions and fights in the pits are sort of acceptable.

We had a local guy (born into a fortune) who used to drive F1 many years ago and traveled the world doing this. He did ok at it and even sponsored an Indy 500 car back in the 70s.
He was even known to fire up his F1 and roar out onto the public roadway from the local Chrysler dealership (which the family also owned).
This guy also owned an original Ford GT40 race car that he drove on the street (until it met a tragic end on a deserted road about 10 at night).


#13

The reason for having the 10k RPM limit is to promote engine durability and keep costs in check. No IRL team has the budget of a Ferrari or McLaren F1 team. And naturally this also keeps development at a standstill, which is not a good thing. I still say that the actual racing aspect of F1 is a joke. If you watched Monaco, it indeed looked like amateur hour out there with cars running bouncing off each other, and front wings falling off left and right. Surely the most talented drivers in the world driving their bleeding edge cars could deal with some rain on the slowest course on the circuit, but I digress. Sure NASCAR isn’t perfect and neither you or I has bought a car with a carburetor in 25 years, but the racing is close, you will see more than three lead changes during the racing, The playing field is much more level than F1, and while they do a fair share of corporate shilling, the drivers have personality. Watching the post-race press conference Lewis Hamilton sounded like he was reading a teleprompter. And he’s one of the more charismatic drivers.


#14

I guess I am correct about americans not wanting to watch real racing, too bad. Maybe it’s finally time to pull the plug on indy series racing and just let them watch NASCAR and monster trucks.

If I want to see NASCAR drivers’ personalities, I’ll just watch some “dukes of hazards” reruns; those guys are really embarrassing.


#15

Stereotype much? If you’re touting F1 as “real racing” then you are leaving out an important aspect of it; the actual racing.


#16

I find the actual racing very interesting; it’s all about strategy and position (often the race is won or lost in qualifying, which you must watch if you want to follow the race) and it does take an extraordinary amount of skill just to drive those cars, but you do have to actually pay attention to what’s going on (and most people can’t even tell the cars apart if they don’t have big silly numbers painted on them).

I do understand that it’s not a bunch of heavy, slow cars banging into each other and waiting for the next full track caution period to make incredibly slow pit stops, so most americans will find it boring. It’s a little like the difference between watching baseball and american football (snooze). The “problem” with F1 in america is that it actually takes a little effort to watch and understand, which is never a good formula for success in the good old U.S.A. (Hey Bubba, pass me those pork rinds and give me another bud light, will ya). I do have to give NASCAR credit for understanding it’s audience very well.

Sorry I brought it up, but I was actually hoping to see an interesting race when I turned on the indy 500. I should have known better.


#17

There is much more skill involved in a NASCAR pit stop than an F1 pitstop. In F1 you have one huge nut to take off and put on, in NASCAR you have 5 per wheel, you also only have one jack man, and you have to have a guy carry the fuel can. In F1 your fuel is fed from a large storage tank. They have computerized rev limiters on the cars for pit road, why can’t the drivers maintain pit road speed by themselves? Furthermore up until a few years ago, in F1 you had such aids as launch control, traction control, and stability control. Why would the best drivers in the world need such coddling? Look at the how wide the tires are on an F1 car. Now look how wide the tires are on a NASCAR racecar. The F1 car’s tires are about twice as wide. Next put an F1 car and a stockcar on a scale. The NASCAR car will weigh about twice as much. Given those two things alone it’s not hard to imagine that the F1 car will be easier to drive. As for cautions bunching up the field, I’ll say that NASCAR does throw some pretty shady cautions for “debris” however since NASCAR is primarily oval racing, any caution will bunch up the field. Of course any series that runs on ovals will have full course cautions, be it NASCAR, IRL, or what used to be CART. When NASCAR races on road courses (which I think they should have more of) they do have local yellows. Back to the actual racing, I think Juan Montoya said it best during an interview a few months back. ?In F1 should you attempt to overtake someone in area of the track that you’re not supposed to be able to pass, it will earn you a collective gasp of horror from both the drivers and the fans. In NASCAR doing that sort of thing is kinda encouraged."


#18

I hope you’re joking about NASCAR being more difficult to drive, you or I could probably drive one of those cars after a few weeks of practice, no additional comments required.

I was actually commenting on the demise of indy racing from it’s previous quality, NASCAR is not worth thinking about unless you are selling beer.


#19

What kind of communists are y’all. Don’t like college football, don’t like Nascar, next thing you know you’ll be trying to take my guns away so I can’t hunt.

I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t like the Nascar of today near as much as I did Nascar 15 years ago. I don’t like these generic dudes from Karlifornia and especially don’t care for them digging up F1 and Indy drivers trying to bring in a different audience. Nascar was born in the Southeast, and it’d be fine with me if it stayed there and they never ran another road course.

I’m sure y’all grew up with heroes like AJ Foyt and Mario Andretti. I grew up watching the Alabama Gang, The Silver Fox (David Pearson for y’all that don’t know no better), The King, Ricky Rudd, Dale Sr., Harry Gant, and Cale Yarborough.

No, you couldn’t climb in a stock car and drive it in 2 weeks. Juan Pablo Montoya has proved that. It took him over a year to learn to drive without wrecking and he’s an F1 champ, so what does that tell you?

No football, come on. I guess you didn’t have the luck to grow up watching Bear Bryant’s boys whoop up on the west coast teams to the point they closed the Rose Bowl to the SEC. I guess having been to 10 3rd Saturday in October’s (Tennessee and Bama) and 3 Iron Bowls (Bama and Auburn) I just can’t understand not liking football.

Skipper


#20

That’s what Montoya, Carpetier, Hornish, Allmandinger, and Franchitti thought too.