Disciple of INDYCAR Weblog

May 16, 2011

Opening Weekend Musings At The Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Filed under: The Disciple Blogs — Disciple of INDYCAR @ 1:28 pm

Random observations from a mostly great weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway:

-Mother Nature continued taunting bean counters at IMS by interrupting opening day with rain, and ALL day on day 2. This is another reason why the month of May really needs to be almost a MONTH every year.

-The vintage car exhibition was brilliant and well beyond awesome. Those fortunate enough to hit IMS before the rain came saw potentially the most inclusive collection of antique cars in history. And the old cars they had displayed off the track were pretty spectacular too.  LOL. Seriously, they need to make than an annual event.

-One of the most idiotic aspects of the bean counting being done at IMS is the inaccessibility of the best seats in the house in turn 1. That kind of short sighted, fan unfriendly nonsense costs the Speedway ticket sales. The seats they let you sit in are mostly just the crappiest seats in the house. If they let people sit in, say, E-stand, they will sell more race tickets because in those seats occupants can experience more than just a car streaking by. Besides, how much can it really cost them, particularly when they pay a dozen or so yellow shirts to stand around and be nasty to customers?

-Many are troubled by the managed collusion that occurs between series management, Honda and Firestone vis-à-vis ‘short’ and ‘long’ programs. There are several quality one-offs this year that could spell trouble for some of the full time teams such as those who employ drivers like James Jakes and Sebastian Saavedra. It appears the competition is being managed in such a way that will ensure entry of the regulars with a bumping knock out round of the one-offs. We appear to have resolved the spec car issue for next year (if Indy Car does not bend over for owners again) now we must resolve the issue of micromanaged competition once and for all. If Barnhart is the issue, replace him. There need to be variables. It is a wonderful development that we will have perhaps 42 drivers competing for 33 slots. But Indy Car seems on the verge of screwing even that up.

-Several hundred people stood in the rain yesterday on the Pagoda Plaza well after track activities had been called for the day and watched a spirited performance by the popular funk band Here Come The Mummies. Fans who were there just for that were let in free after the track activity was called, and for that IMS deserves a lot of credit. That will make some of them come back.

Finally, it was absolutely great watching cars navigate the oval at high speed on Saturday. See you there!



  1. The Mummies behind the Pagoda. I am jealous. Of course, I shouldn’t talk, since I checked their website to see if they’d be playing the night after the 500 at The Vogue like they did for a couple of years there (they’re not…oh, well), only to find out that they were going one better in a few months by coming all the way to the Land of Corn to play a scant couple of miles from my house. I’ll take it.

    Comment by The Speedgeek — May 16, 2011 @ 5:37 pm | Reply

  2. The mummies were great

    Comment by Eric Hall — May 17, 2011 @ 12:26 am | Reply

  3. When are you going to quit crying about “bean counters?” Tony George is gone, he was fired for poor performance. He failed, it is time to let it go. You can go sit in E-Stand next weekend during qualifications. I don’t recall them opening E-Stand during practice days in the past, even when they used to nearly fill the Tower Terrace on some practice days. Looks like they got in a full day of practice today, how many do you think they need? Speaking of, why don’t they hold more than just 1 practice session in the entire week before the race? Seems a little silly. Are you going to tell me that’s how it is at Indy and I just don’t understand, blah, blah, blah.

    Editor’s Note: Naw. I’m just going to continue to laugh at you. The continuing pointless bitterness of haters in May has become a form of entertainment for actual racing fans.

    Comment by TroyM — May 17, 2011 @ 1:40 am | Reply

  4. Barnhart gotta go away

    Comment by rosco — May 17, 2011 @ 7:24 am | Reply

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