Local Indy Driver in 500
Mar 6 - Conor Daly spent the last two seasons in
IndyCar, but didn't find a ride for this year.
He announced today though that he's found a ride
for the Indy 500 with a collaboration between
Thom Burns and Dale Coyne.
The primary sponsor for Daly’s car is the United
States Air Force.
|Most recent news is at bottom of page.
“When the Air Force came in,” explained team owner Thom Burns, “they said ‘We had to
have an American driver.’ Well Conor was the first one that I thought of.”
I think I’m now five-for-five in red, white, and blue cars when I compete at the Indy 500,"
said Daly, "This one has to be the best though."
“Obviously the car looks incredible. The Thunderbird livery is pretty striking. I just can’t wait.”
St Pete Street Course Race
Mar 11 - Newcomer Robert Wickens first surprised the
IndyCar crowd when he beat 7-time pole-sitter Penske
driver Will Power for the pole in damp conditions in his
The Canadian followed that up race day by leading the
most laps as all the drivers got their first chance to
experience the new low-downforce, low-drag IndyCars.
There was lots of action, especially at the beginning and
end of the race with 5 full-course cautions.
Team Penske had a bad day with all 3 drivers having
problems. Scott Dixon, who has never won here, also
suffered unusual problems, from Dixie overshooting a
pass and punting Sato off track earning himself a penalty
for avoidable contact, then later getting another penalty
for speeding in the pit lane. None the less, the Kiwi
worked his way back up front and finished 6th.
Wickens seemed able to pull away from everyone
whenever he got the chance. 2016 Indy 500 winner
Alex Rossi spent most of the day chasing Wickens for
the lead. But by the end, it looked like Wickens had the
race in the bag. Unfortunately for him, another rookie,
Rene Binder, took a turn wide and brought out a yellow
with just 9 laps to go. This bunched up the field and
gave Rossi another shot at passing Wickens on a restart.
With just 4 laps to, the race went green and the
Wickens ran through the first turns perfectly, keeping a
pack of hungry wolves behind him!
And then Max Chilton slides on a corner and into a tire
wall and a local Yellow comes out. As the cars begin
filing past him, the safety team gets his car refired and
he rejoinss the race.
Race control didn't hesitate and threw the green flag!
Just 2 laps to go and Wickens again has to lead the field
through the first turn. This time Rossi stuck to him like
glue as they entered the acceleration zone. Rossi dipped
right and dove to the inside as Wickens approached the
first turn. Rossi was out of control for a moment and slid
into Wickens, forcing Wickens into the wall.
As Rossi regained controlled and floored it, Sebastien
Bourdais and Grahal Rahal passed him for 1st and 2nd
place. So the maneuver cost Rossi a position and it cost
Wickens the race, who ended up all the way down in
18th place! What a heartbreaker for the Canadian -
almost winning in his first ever IndyCar race.
That wreck brougth out the yellow flag and Bourdais
won the race under yellow. Bourdais also won St Pete,
his home race, last year. While Bourdais felt sorry for
Wickens, Dale Coyne was ecstatic that his car won the
It should also be mentioned that 19 y/o rookie Matthew
Leist looked impressive, qualifying 3rd for the race.
Unfortunately for this AJ Foyt driver, he crashed on lap
28, finishing in last place.
As a side note, Helio Castroneves dropped by the
broadcast booth. He missed being in the race so badly
he could taste it! He is happy to be racing in sports cars
this year, but really wishes he was back in Indycar. At
least he'll get a chance to race them at Indy this year.
|After Rossi Punts Wickens Out of the Way, Sebastien Bourdais Slides Through for the Win
|Who Deserved the Win - Robert Wickens
Fittipaldi Might Race Super Formula
Mar 16 - Formula V8 3.5 champion Pietro Fittipaldi could
add a Super Formula programme to his scheduled IndyCar
and WEC outings in 2018, following a debut test in the
Fittipaldi joined Team LeMans for his first taste of the
series' Dallara SF14 car in pre-season testing at Suzuka.
He drove the car on Tuesday, the second day of the test,
and finished ahead of team regular Kazuya Oshima.
Earlier this year, Fittipaldi was confirmed for a seven-race
IndyCar programme with Dale Coyne Racing – and he has
since also been called up for the Spa and Fuji WEC events
by the Dragonspeed LMP1 outfit.
"I can say that Super Formula is a possibility for 2018,"
Fittipaldi told Motorsport.com. "I think, if it happens, it'd
be great for my programme this year.
"I'd be racing in three of the top series in the world, with
IndyCar, Super Formula and WEC - I'd be really privileged
to be racing that.
"And I'm a racer, you know, if I can race every weekend,
I'm doing what I love, so that would be amazing."
Fittipaldi, who has trialled IndyCar, LMP1, Formula 2 and
Formula E machinery since winning last year's 3.5 title,
stated he was very impressed by the "rocket"-like SF14.
"I was really surprised and impressed with the acceleration
of the car – the car is very light, it accelerates super-quick
out of the corners, it's like a rocket, it's unbelievable... it's
extremely impressive. I'm pretty sore now after the test,
because the car is so fast in the corners, you're pulling some
pretty high Gs."
The Toyota-powered Team LeMans has already confirmed
Oshima for one of its seats, but is now the only Super
Formula outfit yet to finalise its driver line-up for 2018.
Formula E frontrunner Felix Rosenqvist drove for the team
last year, finishing third in the championship.
In the recent Suzuka test, Fittipaldi shared the car with
Williams F1 junior Oliver Rowland, who is understood to
likewise be a candidate for the seat.
Rowland has one clash between his Manor LMP1
programme and the Super Formula schedule – while the
Japanese series' May races overlap with the GP of Indy and
the Indy 500, both of which Fittipaldi is confirmed for.
EASTER EGG HUNT!
Mar 29 - The eighth annual Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday,
March 31 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The Easter Egg Hunt for children starts at 11 a.m. in the
Flag Lot in the IMS infield, with registration beginning at
9 a.m. Families are urged to arrive at IMS and register
well before 11 a.m., as kids find the eggs quickly once the
Admission is free with the donation of a pet supply for
IndyHumane. Supplies in need include pet toys, soft,
stinky dog and cat treats, squeeze cheese and bath-sized
towels and blankets.