Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

April 14, 2010

Indy Car Californication

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 3:38 pm

Coming up this weekend is an IZOD Indy Car necessary evil. The only street ‘race’ with a legacy. The Long Beach event has a decades-long history now and has always been promoted well, even during its lean champcar-Indy-boycott years. It has a tendency to draw stars, and some of them even race in one of the preliminary events.

Long Beach is how those who delude themselves into believing such abominations are worthwhile justify trying to propagate them from sea to shining sea even when there are plenty of unused ovals and natural terrain road courses ripe for the picking. Now that Indy car has some competent marketing expertise on board someone really ought to get the ovals back on track. The leadership has already conceded a loss to 50% ovals, so the urgency of making some really good ones work (like Michigan) is there. When NASCAR comes to their senses and begins limiting some two-track-per-year venues to just one, new opportunities will open for Indy Car.

IMS folks seem gleeful about adding new gimmickry to the 500. A ‘fast nine’ will go balls out for the pole between 4pm and 6pm on the one Saturday available. Two things could ruin it:

-Rain/bad weather

-A bad accident when someone goes over the edge (Gordon Smiley in ’82 springs to mind)

Running for the pole, or even getting into the field, has always carried inherent drama. I concede that the ADD-addled target demos of today need additional stimulation and this may do it. I just hope it doesn’t rain and no one gets hurt. What’s wrong with limiting a car to three attempts and the fastest of the day gets onto the pole? That concept is pure and not over-thought. Oh well…gimmicks won’t prevent my group from enjoying the weekend.

If you are California-bound…have a great time!



  1. GPLB is the place to be! I am so excited for the best race of the season.

    Comment by bobfd — April 14, 2010 @ 3:57 pm | Reply

  2. Come to the LBGP, have a Carne Asada Taco from King Taco, a yard of your preferred beverage at The Yard House and take in the scenery. It is a much better “event” than anything ever held at Fontana and I’ve seen plenty of action on track through the years.

    Long Beach will never get replaced by an oval, so get used to it.

    IndyCar will not move engines to the front.
    There will never be racing at IRP or on dirt.
    Everyone at TrackForum is definitely over 60.
    I hope the attitudes change when the good ole’ boys pack it up.

    Oh yeah, bring back Cleveland. I’ll gladly trade it for Infineon (and I’m a California native!).

    Comment by bblocker68 — April 14, 2010 @ 5:10 pm | Reply

    • Lose some stream bro… Engines in front??? Never… There’s always racing at IRP on dirt. IndyCar just does not santion it. Everyone at Track Forum is over 60? Maybe 60 pounds but not 60 years. Who are the good ole boys???

      This sport needs people moving in, not moving out.

      Comment by Mr. Miller — April 14, 2010 @ 8:17 pm | Reply

  3. Will this be the first year that the fastest car on pole day does not get the pole.

    Very sad.

    Comment by Bob F. — April 14, 2010 @ 5:51 pm | Reply

    • Um, not necessarily. Seeing as how the quick times usually come at the end of the day (during the fabled “Happy Hour”), the “Fast 9” are liable to all go quicker than the top speed for the first segment of the day. At the very least, I’d imagine that there’s a really, really good chance that at least one of the nine will go faster than the fastest time from the first part.

      If you’re looking for TV viewers (and Versus is most certainly doing that), it’s probably better to give people a 90 minute time frame that’s “must-see” instead of a 420 minute time frame that’s “eh, maybe if you’re done mowing the yard, switch on the tube for a bit, and maybe something will be happening that won’t make you doze off on the couch”.

      Comment by The Speedgeek — April 14, 2010 @ 9:06 pm | Reply

      • You are right. ABC/ESPN (or whoever this year) usually has its broadcast the last couple hours of pole day. So tradition is being trashed to be sure TV gets to cover the pole winner live. It’s a wonder the Indianapolis 500 has survived this long with these TV unfriendly rules. Of course, race fans who go to the track understand all the strategy going on even when there are no cars on the track. But for the sake of TV, we can throw that all out.

        Trash tradition at your peril, Bernard and Belskus.

        Money, money, money. Ain’t it funny. In the rich man’s world.

        Comment by Bob F. — April 15, 2010 @ 2:05 pm

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