April 2012
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RACE NEWS & VIEWS
Latest news is at the bottom
The New Go-Daddy Girl
April 1 - Canadian James Hinchcliffe aquired Danica Patrick's IndyCar ride
after she departed to stock car racing.  Following in Danica's success in media
popularity, Hinchcliffe has plans for electrolysis and a possible boob job.  He
says he's already a lesbian.
New IndyCars Debut
April 2 - I heard a complaint that the new IndyCars were not
open-wheel anymore and it was a travesty.  Although I had
seen the new cars in person, I was witholding judgement until
I saw them on the track.  

I love them!  They look like nothing else.  To me, they look
like futuristic space ships flying around the track and they
look great from every angle.  

I can see they provide a little more space for sponsorship
advertising, but this would seem to be of utmost importance,
as sponsorship makes the racing world go 'round.  Not that
IndyCar will ever have the ad space that the rectangular
stock cars have.
I love F1, but seriously, their cars just keep getting uglier.  Its
nice to see the smaller-budgeted IndyCars leaping ahead
looks-wise.

The new chassis, DW-12 is named after the late Dan
Wheldon who was the development driver for the new car last
year.

And finally, after two races, we are seeing that the new
chassis work well and offer good competition.

Finally, the competition between three different engine
manufacturers has been exciting and long overdue.  Come
on Lotus!  Keep up!
Indy 500 Carb Day Concert Announced
The band playing at the Carburation Day concert at the
speedway will be
Lynyrd Skynyrd, who play southern rock.
Exciting Moments In Sunday's Open Wheel Races
April 15, 2012
China Grand Prix
Close racing &
Webber pops a wheelie
Nico Rosberg won his first race AND it was
the first win for a Mercedes works car since 1955
Long Beach Grand Prix
Marco Andretti almost gets flipped by Graham Rahal
Grand Prix of Bahrain
April 22 - Formula One held their race in Bahrain despite
protests from human rights groups unhappy with the kingdom's
regime.

Days of escalating government protests failed to halt the
Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday, which took place even as
nearby streets were blocked with burning tires and trash.

Opposition calls for large protests had raised fears the Grand
Prix would have to be canceled for a second year in a row and
pose a threat to Formula One crews, workers, and fans.

There were no outward signs of protest at the race itself. Red
Bull's
Sebastian Vettel secured the win, followed by Kimi
Raikkonen
and Romain Grosjean of Lotus-Renault.  This
was Kimi's first podium since his return to F1 this year and
Romain's first podium.

The Bahrain Grand Prix was canceled twice last year amid an
uprising sparked by the success of popular revolutions in Egypt
and Tunisia. Bahrain's Sunni-ruled government brutally
crushed the majority Shiites' uprising.

Bahrain has declined to extend the visas of non-sports
reporting crews from CNN, Reuters and other news outlets and
told them they would not be allowed to stay for the race.

Canceling the race last year cost Bahrain an estimated $480 to
$800 million in potential investments.
Graffiti depicting Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa in a race car
Bernie Ecclestone, who pushed for the race to be run, told CNN
that he does not believe that sports and politics should mix.

Obvious differences of this race as opposed to other races can
be seen in how the grid girls dress and that the drivers on the
podium spray juice or something instead of champagne.

I would also recommend that you check out GP2.  I found the
GP2 race that preceded the F1 race more exciting.
Sarah Fisher Racing Keeping It Real.. American
April 23 - Back in the days of cageless sprint cars and midgets,
American drivers dreamed of carrying their helmet bags
through the gates of the one and only venue that mattered -
the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Tossing their fire-breathing machines across the dirt tracks of
this great nation often led to a call to the champ cars and onto
the Indianapolis 500 at the Brickyard.

In recent years, many short track stars across the nation have
been overlooked in favor of foreign drivers.

There are currently only 7 Americans in IndyCar:
Marco Andretti (Andretti Autosport),
Ryan Hunter-Reay (Andretti Autosport),
Graham Rahal (Ganassi Racing),
Charlie Kimball (Ganassi Racing),
Ed Carpenter (Ed Carpenter Racing),
J.R. Hildebrand (Panther Racing) and
Josef Newgarten (Sarah Fisher Racing)

At this year's 96th running of the 500, an American dirt track
star is hopeful of being among the 33 starters.

Bryan Clauson, the 2010 and '11 USAC midget champion and
2010 and '11 USAC National Driver Champion, will be teaming
with the Indiana-based IZOD IndyCar Series team of Sarah
Fisher Hartman Racing, joining Josef Newgarden as a
teammate.

"It's quite an honor to bring a USAC champion to the
Indianapolis 500," said Fisher. "I am very fond of my roots in
short track oval racing, and watching Bryan at some of these
events really brings back memories. Personally knowing his
background, I have complete confidence in his credentials,
talent and capabilities, and look forward to working with him at
Indy. .."
"It's an awesome opportunity for me to enter the Indianapolis
500 with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing," said Clauson, of
Noblesville, Indiana. "It's almost surreal just talking about it. For
me to be attempting to make the race with Sarah's team is just
phenomenal. With her background in sprint car and midget
racing and her continued involvement at that level, this is just a
good fit for me. I'm also proud to be an Indiana boy driving for
an Indiana team."
Bryan Clauson
Foyt Hires Indy Lights Driver for Indy 500
April 22 - IndyCar rookie Wade Cunningham will drive for A.J.
Foyt in the No. 41 ECat/ABC Supply Dallara as the ABC Supply
team prepares its two Honda-powered entries for next month’s
Indianapolis 500. Alfe Heat Treating will be an associate
sponsor on the No. 41 car for the second year in a row.

Cunningham is from Auckland New Zealand.

“Indy means more to me than anything else,” the 27-year-old
revealed. “Winning at Indy in the Firestone Indy Lights Series is
the only thing that kept my career on track so it’s important to
me to go there and do well in IndyCar and prove that the results
can translate.”

Foyt certainly hopes those results will translate because in five
of Cunningham’s six starts in the Firestone Freedom 100, he
won three times, and placed second and third!
Wade Cunningham
IndyCar Visits Brazil
April 29 - Viewership is up 40% for this race, perhaps due to
the entrance of popular Brazilian driver
Rubens Barrichello.  
It is estimated that 13 million will watch this race on TV.  The
race itself was sold out.

Team Barracuda decided to sit out the Brazil race.  They and
Dreyer and Reinbold Racing are going to switch to Honda
engines from Lotus engines for the Indy 500 next month.  
Honda and Cheverolet equipped teams seem to be about even,
but Lotus has been struggling.  This will leave  Lotus Dragon
Racing and HVM Racing using Lotus power.

Will power captured pole for today's race.  He won this race
both the previous two years that IndyCar has raced on the
streets of Sao Paulo.

Power controlled the race. By lap 50 (of 75)
Ryan
Hunter-Reay
was in 2nd place thanks to a shunt to Dario
Franchitti
which had moved him to the back of the pack
earlier.  He now was back up to 3rd place, followed by
Helio
Castroneves
and Takuma Sato.
Ana Beatriz was penalized for booting Ed Carpenter.

A restart on with 8 laps to go resulted in 8 cars wrecked or
stalled at turn 2 when
Mike Conway got into the wall and
seven drivers piled up behind him including
Tony Kanaan.
Conway was also the one who punted Dario earlier in the race.  
Dario finished in 5th, his best this year, and is now 10th in
points.

Will Power won again.  This was his 18th career win.  It is also
the first time in it's 44-year history that Team Penske has
opened the season with 4 straight wins!

Sato's 3rd place finish was his best to date.

Other IndyCar news:
Michel Jourain Jr. will attempt to qualify for the 500 after a
16-year hiatus.  He'll be driving for Rahal.

John Barnes, Panther Racing CEO, fined $25,000 and placed
on probation for improper tweet in reference to IndyCar.