July 2014 News
Solar Farm at IMS

July 1 - The Indy Speedway has erected
almost 40,000 solar panels on some unused
land just east of the golf course.  

They will generate 9.0 megawatts of power,
which is equal to offsetting 10,288 tons of
carbon annually and is enough to power
1000 homes.

I hope the golf balls don't smash the panels!
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Bizarre MotoGP Start

July 13 -  Rain had fallen at the
Sachsenring Circuit which made many
MotoGP teams prepare their bikes with
rain tires.  But the track dried quickly
before the start and many drivers pitted for
slick tires.  This meant that they would
have to start the race from the back of the
grid, or rather, in the pit lane.

However,  German
Stefan Bradl had
decided to start on slicks, so he sat at the
front of the grid all alone.

Anxious to see
Marc Marquez continue
his domination, I feared he would not be
able to ever catch Bradl.

Ha!  As the riders were released from the
pit lane, Marquez led that group which
meant he was in 10th place.  

Marquez quickly caught up and began
moving up positions every lap until by lap
7 he was in the lead!

Unfortunately for Bradl, his bike was not
setup as well as it could have been and he
spend the race falling backward through
the pack to finish just out of the points in
16th place.

Marquez captured his 9th straight win!
He is only 21-years old.

MotoGP will now have a summer break
and the season will resume August 10 right
here at the Indy Speedway.
In the upper right, you can see the riders who changed
tires waiting in the pit lane to start.
Toronto Rain Stalls IndyCar

July 19 - IndyCar headed to Canada for a
double-header race weekend.  

Rain and a very slick street course prevented the
series from ever starting the race.  

Before it was red flagged, the pace car slid off the
track.  Also
Will Power hit the wall.

The race has been postponed until tomorrow at
10:30am.  There is of course a race scheduled for
tomorrow.  The second race will now start at
4:15pm.  Both races will be 65 laps.  
Sebastien Bourdais Won Pole for Today's Race
Marco Andretti Qualified Last
Josef Newgarden and Sarah Fisher are joined by Canadian actress
Sarah Fisher.
New Scoring Pylon

July 22 - The Indianapolis Motor Speedway will introduce its
third-generation scoring pylon to the media on Tuesday, July
22, on the main straightaway of the iconic 2.5-mile oval.

Located just south of the entrance to Gasoline Alley, the
newest pylon will feature full LED panels on all four sides
providing improved messaging capabilities to fans that will
include animation and video.

Made by Panasonic, the pylon has 1,320 panels on each side
and 5,280 combined on all four sides. It stands 92 feet, 2
inches tall, replacing the second-generation pylon that stood 90
feet, 4 inches and was removed on June 30, 2014, after 20
years of service. That pylon, powered by 6,496 30-watt light
bulbs, could only display basic race scoring with a space at the
top for race logos.

The original IMS scoring pylon was built in the spring of 1959,
then a one-of-a-kind model which featured a lap counter,
average speed indicator and positions for 33 cars.  It was
manually operated.
Nationwide Indy Race

July 27 - Ty Dillon held off a charging Kyle Busch
in the closing laps of the Lilly Diabetes 250 at
Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but he had to win the
first NASCAR Nationwide Series race of his career
with a fuel cell approaching empty.

Dillon grabbed the lead from Busch, the pole
winner, moments after a restart on Lap 77 of 100.
He soon opened a lead of one second over the most
prolific winner in series history, but it wasn't without
some pinpoint calculations on the part of crew chief
Danny Stockman.

In what was a family affair of the first order,
, the driver's father and spotter, told Ty Dillon
to start backing up his corners with six laps left.
Dillon promptly lost a third of a lead that had grown
to more than 1.2 seconds.

Team owner
Richard Childress, Dillon's
grandfather, broke into the radio channel a lap later.

"You can't give up that much to him," Childress
said. "Go for it."

From that point on, Mike Dillon and Stockman kept
repeating the same mantra, "Hammer down!" -- and
Dillon obliged, getting to the finish line .833 seconds
ahead of Busch. Matt Kenseth ran third, and Kevin
Harvick fourth.

"Boy, that was all I had," Dillon said. "When you've
got the best in the business behind you, it's tough.
It's tough to stay focused and not give up."

As the highest finisher among four eligible drivers for
the Nationwide Insurance Dash 4 Cash Dillon
pocketed an extra $100,000, but the important thing
was his first win in the series.
Sportscars Race Indy

July 25 - The No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette
DP team used outright speed to take the lead in
Friday’s Brickyard Grand Prix at Indianapolis Motor
Speedway and then used pit strategy to put an
exclamation point on a day that ended with drivers
Christian Fittipaldi and Joao Barbosa kissing the
circuit’s famed “yard of bricks.”

Barbosa took the Prototype lead from
with 48 minutes remaining and never looked
back, maintaining a healthy lead for much of his stint
while also conserving fuel. When the Prototype
contenders hit pit road with less than 20 minutes
remaining, Barbosa was able to stay out and took the
checkered flag 48.964 seconds ahead of the No. 01
Chip Ganassi Racing Ford EcoBoost/Riley DP of
Scott Pruett.

It was the second TUDOR United SportsCar
Championship victory of the season for Fittipaldi and
Barbosa after the duo opened the season with a
victory in the Rolex 24 At Daytona. For Fittipaldi,
the win came 19 years after he made his Indianapolis
500 debut in 1995, finishing second and earning
Rookie of the Year honors in the event.

“Today was a nice win, even if it was 19 years after
that,” Fittipaldi said. “It was a perfect day. All of the
stars aligned, the team did an excellent job and hats
off to them. I’m happy for the win, but I’m also
happy to be in the lead of the championship again
and still in the hunt.”
Pruett was one of the drivers who was forced to pit
road for fuel in the closing stages of the two-hour,
45-minute race. He pitted the No. 01 machine with
eight laps remaining, but as the other contenders
followed suit, Pruett cycled back to a second-place
finish for him and co-driver
Sage Karam.

Karam, who was subbing in the event for regular
Memo Rojas, had an up-and-down opening
stint. Going into the first turn on the opening lap,
Karam made contact with another Prototype,
triggering a multi-car spin. It didn’t take long for
Karam to settle into a groove, though, and he was
able to drive his way back through the field,
eventually taking the class lead.

The No. 90 VISITFLORIDA.com/GoPro Corvette
DP driven by
Richard Westbrook and Michael
finished third to continue a streak of four
consecutive podium finishes for the team dating back
to Detroit Belle Isle in May.
Brickyard 400

July 27 - As he crossed the yard of bricks, and the
significance of his fifth victory at Indianapolis Motor
Speedway hit him like a ton of bricks,
Jeff Gordon
reveled in the moment that propelled him to victory
in the Brickyard 400.

"God, I finally had the restart of my life," Gordon
shouted into his radio mic, recalling the move just 15
minutes earlier that launched him past Hendrick
Motorsports teammate
Kasey Kahne on Lap 144 of
160 in Sunday's marquee NASCAR Sprint Cup
Series race.

Twenty years removed from his victory in the
inaugural Brickyard 400, Gordon finished 2.325
seconds ahead of
Kyle Busch who with teammates
Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth finished 2-3-4 in
the 20th Sprint Cup race of the season.

The win was the 90th of Gordon's career --
third-most all-time -- his second of the season and, of
course, his record fifth at IMS, breaking a tie with
Jimmie Johnson for most Cup wins at
the Brickyard. The win also clinched Gordon a spot
in the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, assuming
he attempts to qualify for the remaining six races of
the regular season.

And though open-wheel purists may blanch at the
notion, Gordon is the first driver in any series to win
five races on the legendary 2.5-mile oval that has
played such an integral role in the history of
motorsports in the United States.

"I'm not very good on restarts and wasn't very good
today, but I finally got the restart of my life today
when it counted most," said Gordon, who gave
Chevrolet its 12th straight Cup victory at Indy.
"Once I got clear, I was thinking, like, 'I can't believe
this is happening now...'

"I was trying so hard with 10 (laps) to go not to
focus on the crowd," added Gordon, who increased
his series lead over teammate and ninth-place finisher
Dale Earnhardt Jr. to 24 points. "Every once in a
while, I'd glance up there and I could see the
reaction. I was trying not to let it get to me and not
think about it too much. And yet you can't help it.

"It's such a big place and such an important victory
and a crucial moment in the season and the
championship, and those emotions take over. I have
my kids here. There's nothing better, especially at
one of the biggest races, to have your family here. ...
This one is for all those fans throughout the years
and all weekend long. They're saying, 'We believe
you can get number five.' We got number five --

If Gordon had trouble believing the outcome, team
owner Rick Hendrick did not. In fact, Hendrick had
a premonition about the race.

"I told (Gordon) this morning, 'This is your day,'
Hendrick recalled. "For him to break that tie (with
Johnson), it's pretty special. I remember the first one
(1994) and how good it felt.

"This one feels just as good."
Joey Logano ran fifth, and Kahne slipped to sixth in
the final 17-lap run after leading 70 laps and, for
most of the afternoon, looking to be the likely winner.

Kahne grabbed the lead from Denny Hamlin after a
restart on Lap 73, bringing Kyle Busch with him. For
the next 24 laps, Kahne maintained an advantage
over Busch that fluctuated between one and two
seconds until Trevor Bayne's No. 21 Ford spun and
smacked the inside guard rail in the short chute
between Turns 3 and 4 to cause the third caution of
the afternoon.

Clint Bowyer, who had come to pit road moments
before Bayne's spin, had the luxury of staying out
while other lead-lap cars stopped under yellow and
led the field to green on Lap 102. Seconds later,
however, Kahne retook the lead, and Bowyer soon
slipped back to fourth behind Kahne, Busch and

Busch surrendered second place to Gordon on Lap
113 and used the opportunity to duck behind the No.
24 Chevrolet and free a piece of paper debris that
had attached itself to the grille of his No. 18 Toyota.
Gordon quickly pulled away and began to close on
Kahne, knocking a 2.6-second deficit to two
car-lengths by the time Ryan Truex's Toyota stalled
on the track.

"Use one of the freaking exits," Gordon screamed
rhetorically on his radio, but Truex's car came to a
stop, and NASCAR had no choice but to call the
fourth caution.

Kahne and Gordon led a large contingent that opted
to stay out on the track under the yellow, but Kahne
picked the wrong lane on the restart, opening the
door for Gordon to pass on the outside through
Turns 1 and 2 as Kahne slipped back to fifth.

And that restart, as No. 24 crew chief Alan
Gustafson had predicted during a quick interview
before the final green-flag run, decided the race.
Juan Montoya and ....