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The Platypus
The AMBER Alert Portal 300
IRL Kentucky Race
Sunday, August 14, 2005
I received 2 sets of free Kentucky IRL ticket vouchers in
the mail from Marlboro, good for 4 tickets. That was
enough encouragement to attend.
the gang
Dave, Russ and Brian.
Brian drove us in his van. We left Indy
at 9:30 and got parked about noon.
The race didn't start until 2:30 Indy
time (3:30 local time).
We hiked up around the outside
of the track looking for the place
to redeem our ticket vouchers.
Marlboro Penske would only
honor one set, so we needed to
get two more tickets. Russ found
someone up around a ticket
stand who gave him two free
"comp" tickets! We then found a
scalper who traded us our tickets
plus $40 for 4 seats together in
Stand 2, Section N, row 20. So
we each only spent $10.
Besides bringing some Harp beer
today, I also picked up some
Grolsch Amber Ale to try. Like
Harp, it is a great beer! Big Dave
just drank water all day and so he
would be our driver on the way
home. Kentucky Speedway does
not allow coolers, so we tailgated
out at the car. I did sneak a flask
into the track so I had a couple
cocktails during the race. The line
to get in was very long and slow.
KY Stands
It was a hot muggy day, but there
was some good cloud cover and
Dan Wheldon
This chick's tatooes included spiders,
beetles and bloodsucking zombies.
The Valvoline Chopper
Valvoline Chopper
Kids can practice performing
a pit stop at this display.
pit practice
Qualifying was rained out
yesterday, so the starting lineup
was according to practice
speeds. Danica was on the pole!
Danica on Pole
Dario Franchitti came out of the pits,
lost a wheel and slid up onto the
track. He limped back around to the
Dario pits
I needed a pack of smokes and
went in search. Even with all the
Penske Marlboro tents everywhere,
no one had any smokes for sale
except one snack stand at the total
opposite end of the place.
Dan Wheldon had a good day, but
his Andretti-Green teammates did
not. Wheldon finished 3rd.
Wheldon pits
There was a record setting number of
people in attendance today - 62,595.
KY Crowd
Ed Carpenter had trouble with the Vision
car and limped behind. When the pack
was passing him, he had mechanical
problems and hit the wall.
Sharp pits
There was lots of close side by side
racing today. This was a tremendous
race to see! Even though we were only
halfway up the stands, we could see all
the way around the track.
Coming into the pits...
Toward the end of the race, Vitor Meira was right
on Scott Sharp's bumper. Lap after lap Meria ran
side by side with Sharp, but couldn't pass him on
the outside and Sharp protected the inside line to
the end of the race. Sharp's margin of victory was
the 2nd closest in the speedway's history.
Sharp Wins
A.J. Foyt IV and Jimmy Kite had a
good day, finishing in the top 10.
The series also set the record for lead changes
with "The AMBER Alert Portal Indy 300" as the
lead changed 16 times among Andretti Green
driver Tony Kanaan, Meira, Sharp and Wheldon.
I was happy to see Scott Sharp win. He'd one an
IRL race every year since the series inception
until last year. It was also good to see a different
team in each of the front runners.
While there were many people directing traffic
into the speedway, there were none but a few
officers directing traffic out. There was only one
way out of our parking area, and we all sat there
an hour before they let us out. There was only one
restroom outside the track. This place needed a
lot more.