Dan's IndyMotorSpeedway.com
News & Views

This Page:
  • DECEMBER 2004
  • NOVEMBER 2004
  • OCTOBER 2004
  • SEPTEMBER 2004
  • BRICKYARD 400
  • AUGUST 2004
  • JULY 2004
  • JUNE 2004
  • Other Pages:

  • 2003 4TH QUARTER NEWS
  • 2004 JAN-APR NEWS
  • 2004 MAY NEWS
  • RACING NEWS INDEX

  • December 2004

  • (12/26) - Back in the spring of 1981, I was a temporary helper for a World Of Outlaw sprint car team. I was still in high school. We drove over to Ohio for a race. As usual, Steve Kinser, from Bloomington Indiana, was the man to beat. After he won the race, we happened to go to dinner with him at the nearest IHOP. He was so good, I figured he'd be winning races for a few years to come, before the next young guy sprung up who would shoo him away from victory lane and embarrass him into retirement.

    Obviously I'm not much of a psychic. Steve Kinser is still kicking everybody's ass at age fifty even though NASCAR's Tony Stewart is funding competitor Danny Lososki's team. Kinser won his 19th championship in this year's competitive season with 17 feature wins. (Lososki won 9.) By the time the season ended, Kinser had built his career win total to an astonishing 513 A-main victories! Like Michael Schumacher, Steve Kinser is a legend in his own time. I should have gotten an autograph.

  • (12/23) - Besides getting ready to start his own Nextel Cup team, Robby Gordon is joining the Volkswagen Race Touareg team to race in the Dakar Rally! Dakar covers six countries from Spain to Senegal over mountains, across beaches, over desert terrain including sand dunes and many varieties of roads, rivers and scenery covering 8956 kilometers with one day of rest. 5431kms represent the 16 special stages. The race begins January 1st from Spain and ends in Senegal 17 days later.

    "Excellent endurance qualities are a necessity," explained Gordon on how he views the Dakar rally. "The car must be 100 per cent reliable and the driver and co-driver have to fend for themselves."

    The American has vast experience in off-road competition which should aid him on his newest adventure. Plus his road course and oval racing knowledge could be an aid for the team as they challenge for victory in Dakar 2005.

    The six-time off-road champion and Baja 1000 two-time winner moved from desert racing to sportscar racing in 1990. In 1991, Gordon had his first taste of stockcar racing before he ventured into openwheel racing. Since 2000, Gordon's main commitment has been NASCAR Cup racing; yet, the 35-year-old driver found time to compete in the Indy 500, Baja 1000 and the by invitation only Race of Champions.

    "I am looking forward to this opportunity," said Gordon. "I like a challenge, one reason I still compete in the Baja 1000."

  • (12/18) - David Coulthard was replaced on McLaren by Juan Pablo, but he has found a new home at Jaguar, er, I mean the Red Bull F1 team. No teammate announced as of yet.
  • (12/18) - Alex Wurz, McLaren's test driver, is in a fix. He cannot fit into the shorter cockpit of the new chassis! To make matters worse, McLaren had been planning to use him as the third driver on race weekends this year as the FIA is allowing Formula One teams that did not finish in the top four in the points, to run a third driver in the Friday sessions of race weekends in 2005. `Fifth-place McLaren qualifies and is intent on using this small advantage. Poor Alex, someone forgot to measure him.
  • (12/18) - Sprint Wireless announced they would purchase NEXTEL communications, the sponsor of the Cup series, for $35 billion. The new name for the company may simply be Sprint NEXTEL. At this time it was not known to NASCAR what impact the merger would have on the sport. Representatives did state that the possibility of a merger was well thought out before signing the 10-year deal with the wireless server provider.

    Maybe the name NEXTowner would be appropriate.

  • (12/18) - International Speedway Corporation has shelled out $100 million to buy land in Staten Island, where it plans to build a $600 million New York City track on an old industrial waste site. Staten Island sits about 45 minutes from Manhattan, a market NASCAR is desperate to conquer.
  • (12/14) - Patrick Racing and Kelley Racing are going belly up. Kelley was a force in the IRL since its inception with driver Scott Sharp, having won a race every season until '04. Kelley joins Treadway & Hemelgarn as once great IRL teams that couldn't compete with the big money that entered the IRL from the CART teams (that caused the open-wheel war to begin with).

    It is intersting how these 5 teams (Penske, Ganassi, Mo Nunn, Rahal & Green[Andretti]) wreak havoc all over the racing scene in America. By their disruption of Indycar, one would think that they are actually in the employ of Bill France or Bernie Ecclestone. They tried their damndest to give the Indy 500 a black eye, and then they turned around and drove CART into bankruptcy and abandonded her. After they finish off Panther, Cheever and Foyt Racing, I predict they will destroy the IRL, forcing the end of Indycar and the Indy 500 and perhaps even truth, justice and the American Way! ;-)

    Not really. They will be more than happy to continue winning the Indy 500 and the Indy car title. We must remember that as we root for the underdog, in the long run, only the rich survive in big time sports. If not owned by a billionaire, any sport franchise will eventually fold to the competition, whether its football or motorsports. That is one of the factors that encourages folks to support high school and college sports. Which reminds me, when are our high schools going to start supporting karting as a sport??? :-)

  • (12/7) - I think the only thing we will be seeing Kenny Brack doing on race weekend is playing guitar. Rahal-Letterman is expanding to a 3-car IRL team with drivers carried over from 2004 - Indy 500 Champion Buddy Rice and Vitor Meira and they are moving 22 y/o 100 lb Danika Patrick up after her 2nd season in Toyota Atlantics where she finished 3rd in the points in '04.
  • (12/7) - Sam Hornish, Jr. and Helio Castroneves recently took an old CART racer to the Sebring road course for some road racing practice. The IRL has a ban on private testing, but that only applies to IRL equipment, and allows the team to prepare for the IRL's first road races in 2005.
  • (12/6) - If I ran a distillery and I wanted to give a lot of my hard-earned money to a race team (and you know I would), I would not pick a team in a series that until a week ago, has refused to do business with me, apparently because my product is so vile that they can't even have their corporate image besmirched by the presence of my name.

    But Jack Daniels did just that. NASCAR's Richard Childress Racing announced sponsorship from Jack Daniels for Dave Blaney for '05. I understand its all about advertising dollars used wisely and no one is going to dispute Nascar's advertising capabilities. It just seems lame. No individuals with daring, just typical corporate bottom line thinking. Perhaps since Crown Royal sponsors IROC and Jim Beam is already a sponsor in Indycar, Jack didn't want any competition on the track. How would it look if the Jim Beam car lapped the Jack Daniels car?

  • (12/5) - There is an interesting race in Europe called the Race of Champions (RoC) that has been held for 17 years. It pits 16 top drivers from eight countries against each other, in identical cars. Like America’s IROC racing, its purpose is to test drivers from different racing disciplines to try and determine the best driver. Where Nascar drivers have the edge in IROC because it is very similar to the cars they race, Rally drivers have an advantage in RoC as rally cars are used. Infact a rally driver has won the race every year leading up to this weekends race. However, RoC also uses several other types of cars as well in this annual event. This year the drivers race four machines, a Ferrari 360, Peugeot 307 WRC. Citroen Xsara WRC and a Dune Buggy. There is also a a contest to determine the nation with the best drivers.

    This year’s event was held in the middle of Paris at a soccer stadium called Stade de France. Here is the figure-eight track that was created for the audience of 62,000.

    track

    The entry list for this weekends race included a lot of 2004 champions:

    Germany: Michael Schumacher – 7 time Formula One World Champion
    Germany: Armin Schwarz – WRC driver
    France: Jean Alesi – former F1 driver
    France: Sébastien Loeb – 2004 WRC champion
    USA: Casey Mears – Nascar driver
    USA: Jimmie Johnson – Nascar driver
    Britian: David Coulthard – F1 driver
    Britian: Colin McRae – WRC champion
    Sweden: Kenny Brack – Indycar Champion
    Sweden: Mattias Ekstrom - 2004 DTM German Touring Car Champion
    Finland: Heikki Kovalainen – 2004 World Series by Nissan Champion
    Finland: Marcus Gronholm – Rally champion
    Brazil: Felipe Massa – F1 driver
    Brazil: Tony Kanaan – 2004 Indycar Champion
    Team Playstation France: Sebastien Bourdais – 2004 Champcar Champion
    Team Playstation France: Stéphane Sarrazin – Rally champion

    Jeff Gordon was supposed to compete, but he was sick. The two Americans that did show up barely arrived in time to race and did not get any practice. Attending the Nascar awards ceremony in NY made them late. At least they had some kind of excuse as they both lost in the first round.

    2004 F1 Champion Michael Schumacher added another jewel to his crown at the event, as he defeated World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb in a special head-to-head contest between this year’s two FIA World Champions. Both of these drivers were favored to win; Loeb won the event last year.

    Heikki Kovalainen, at age 23, was the youngest driver. He eliminated F1's David Coulthard in is his first match, then went on to dispose of Jean Alesi. That result saw him qualify process for a place in the "racers' final" against Michael Schumacher who he promptly defeated by a little less than 1 second in the Ferraris!

    Meanwhile, reigning World Rally Champion Sébastien Loeb had successively disposed of Tony Kanaan, Armin Schwarz and 2003 Champion of Champions Marcus Grönholm. Kanaan stalled his car at the start and Loeb won that heat. Kanaan said it was just as well, noting the noisy French fans cheering for Loeb. "Can you imagine if I had won? I think the crowd would have jumped onto the track and just beaten the crap out of me. "

    This threw Kovalainen and Loeb together. The first of the final's three heats was raced at the wheel of Peugeot 307 WRCs which theoretically gave the advantage to Loeb. Kovalainen only sat inside a WRC car for the first time just minutes before the start as Peugeot engineers took time to talk him through the different controls, including the car's steering-wheel mounted gearshift system. And clearly the lesson worked for the Finn who immediately went out to spring a stunning victory over Loeb by 8/10ths of a second, profiting certainly from an early mistake by the Frenchman.

    Kovalainen "I just can't believe it," exclaimed the Finn after the finish, "especially the fact that I beat rallying's World Champion in a WRC car. Amazing! And it's not every day you get a chance to beat Michael Schumacher. That was a big moment. I just tried to attack a little harder, brake a little later. And the atmosphere was great too!" The car he drove to a championship this year looks very much like an IRL car. He hopes to move into a Formula One career and may get a testing job next year.

    France came away on top as Jean Alesi helped France grab the Nations Cup after Kovalainen was robbed of a chance of the win by mechanical failure. Even so, Alesi nearly threw the victory away in the final by stopping his car early, thinking the event was won, before the checkered flag!


  • November 2004

  • (11/29) - Terry Labonte, Mark Martin and Rusty Wallace say they are going to be hanging it up after next season.
  • (11/27) - NASCAR's Tony Stewart purchased Eldora Speedway from Earl Baltes, who had owned it since it opened in 1954. Eldora is a half-mile clay oval in Rossburg, Ohio. Tony plans to fix it up while maintaining its usual schedule and special events.
  • (11/22) - Dario Franchitti was the first IRL driver to test the Sears Point Raceway, the road course in California whose name has been bought and is now called Infineon Raceway. What exactly is an Infineon I wondered. Could it be a recently discovered atomic particle? No, it is a German company, called Infineon Technologies AG to be precise, which spun off of Siemens AG in 1999. They make semiconductors. They are worldwide and have 35,600 employees.

    The IRL race will be the first major open-wheel event at Infineon Raceway since Dan Gurney won a 150-mile USAC IndyCar race there in 1970 with a field that included Mario Andretti, Mark Donahue and Al Unser. The race weekend will also provide an Infiniti Pro Series race.

    The one-day test was completed on the same 12-turn, 2.2-mile circuit that will be used for the inaugural IndyCar Series event at Infineon Raceway. The IRL has changed the course layout from how it was first announced. Here is the new layout with the addition of the sweeping, 200-degree Carousel.

    “I think this is going to be a very physical race for the drivers,” said Franchitti, who raced in many road course during his four years in CART. “I’ve never been on a track like this. You’re really compromising on every turn.”

    The tight turns and drastic elevation changes at Infineon Raceway will put increased demand on the cars’ brakes and transmissions, necessitating changes to prepare the oval-ready cars for road courses. The compatibility test at Infineon Raceway, which also allowed IRL officials to evaluate the facility, was originally scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 11, but was rescheduled due to rain.

    “This course is really challenging and I was quite taken aback at first,” said Franchitti. “The corners are very quick, which makes it difficult. These cars accelerate very quickly, so you’re coming into the corners very fast and you have to be prepared.”

    The IndyCar Series and Menards Infiniti Pro Series will return for an Open Test at Infineon Raceway, April 12-13.

    In addition to this road course, the IRL will race at Watkins Glen and on a street circuit in St. Petersburg Florida next year.

  • (11/21) - The IRL is considering a switch back to production-based engines. GM reportedly is in favor of this as they had some huge success between 1997-99 with Oldsmobile. GM is currently planning on withdrawing Chevrolet from participation in the series after the 2005 season. Perhaps GM will change its mind if such a change in engine formula is revealed.

    The IRL won't change the engine formula sooner than 2007. They will make any such announcements in May 2005. Of course the IRL will have to access the reactions of Honda and Toyota.

  • (11/20) - Honda will be taking a deeper interest in the BAR F1 team. Besides supplying the power, they will now also become partners in the team, owning 45%. This little deal happenes to spell the end for team principal David Richards.
  • (11/18) - ChampCar's new champion, Sebastien Bourdais, was disapointed when he couldn't get a test drive for Williams, who are looking for a new driver for next season. According to Bourdais, Frank told him that being a Champ Car champion no longer means what it did a few years ago. Way to go de Matta! By the way, have you noticed the CART idiots have named their championship cup the "Vanderbilt Cup"?! It was bad enough when the old CART website acted like they invented Indycar racing, bringing up names from the past like they had been CART members (CART formed in 1979). Now, they grab the name of a race that was held around 1908, before the Indy 500! They are so jealous of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IndyCar racing, they try to invent a history that never was. They must figure their fans are utter morons.

  • (11/17) - Word of our "Show Us Your Tits" pasttime at the Indy 500 has swept across the seas. 3 weeks ago, during the Lexmark Indy 300 in Surfers Paradise, Australia, this photo was snapped of a Australian military "Huey" helicopter sweeping down low near the race fans.

    Huey

    Photographed from nearby building, the photo found its way to the Australian Defence Force. Now these soldiers may be in a bit of hot water.

  • (11/15) - Worries about the future of ChampCar and F1, caused by Ford, were solved today in several transactions. ChampCar team owners Forsythe and Kalkhoven purchased the ailing Cosworth engine company that Ford was selling off. This was critical to ChampCar, as all their powerplants are built by Cosworth. Cosworth also supplied engines to several teams in Formula One including Jordan and Minardi.

    The Jordan F1 team announced a new engine deal for Toyota power for 2005.

    Ford also sold off their Jaguar F1 team to Red Bull. Ford ends 35 years participation in F1. Ford never achieved the success with the Jaguar team as Jackie Stewart had done before them. Perhaps a few choice individuals can do more for Cosworth than Big Blue after all.

    As a side note: Kevin Kalkhoven has only been involved in racing for 22 months and is a blowhard and a conspiracy-theorist. Can he help rescue an English racing company that Ford's giant coffers were unable to save? A company who HE claims has liabilities which total $60 million? I guess he doesn't have any choice, somebody in ChampCar has to act! I wonder though why he tries to create a fight with Tony George every time he gets his name in the paper. If you hear him talk, listen to all his "I think" and "I believe" phrases as me makes claims against Tony George and notice zero proof is ever offered. I think Fred Nation summed it up well: "There was never any interest on behalf of Tony George, the Indy Racing League, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, or any of the Hulman companies in the Cosworth situation. Like many in the racing industry, we have been watching it from afar. But we did not aid or abet any effort to acquire Cosworth.".

  • (11/14) - With one NASCAR race left to run, the run for the championship is close! Kurt Busch still leads the points - at 6346. Close behind is Jimmie Johnson (6328), Jeff Gordon (6325), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (6274), Mark Martin (6264) and Tony Stewart (6161). Johnson has won 4 of the last 5 races! Compare his eight 1st-place trophys to Busch's three. Go figure.
  • (11/14) - It was a star-studded podium for the annual Granja Viana 500 kart race in Brazil on Sunday with Rubens Barrichello, Tony Kanaan, Felipe Giaffone and Dan Wheldon winning the 10 and a half hour race by just 15 seconds from Gil de Ferran, Helio Castroneves, Rubem Carrapatoso and Osvaldo Negri. The third placed kart was that of last year's winners Christian Fittipaldi, Mario Haberfeld and Charlie Fonseca although they were seven laps behind the two frontrunning karts at the end of the event.

    Juan Pablo Montoya had troubles with its engine and dropped back and when the team tried to fight back in the course of the race, Federico Montoya, Juan-Pablo's brother, crashed and bent an axle. The team eventually retired from the race.

    It was the fifth win in the event for Barrichello and Kanaan

  • Jeff Ward

  • (11/14) - Former Indy-car racer Jeff Ward claimed the AMA Supermoto championship (450) with a victory Saturday in the Red Bull A-Go-Go. "I put a little Supercross block pass on him," Ward said of the decisive pass on Kunzel. "Its hard to believe I'm back winning AMA championships again. I never dreamed this would happen."

    Jeff Ward wins 450

  • (11/13) - NASCAR repeals 32-year prohibition against liquor sponsors. Indy driver Dan Wheldon better watch out, or he might be losing a sponsor!

  • (11/12) - Late but humorous F1 photos.

    After announcing that he was switching to the renowned Frank Williams BMW F1 team next year, Brit Jenson Button was later to learn that BAR was not going to let him out of his contract.

    Here is Michael Schumacher, upon learning he had won the 2004 F1 Championship:
    "Gee, I really won?!"

  • (11/12) - The IRL is sponsoring Bobby Rahal and Bryan Herta's Snap-on Stars of Karting Series which is intended to help develop new talent for the upper reaches of open wheel racing. The Snap-on Stars of Karting presented by the Indy Racing League is an eight-race championship with Eastern and Western divisions. Each division supports six different karting classes: ICC (125cc shifter), ICA (100cc direct drive), 80cc Junior (80cc shifter), JICA (100cc clutch), EasyKart (125cc clutch) and Cadet (80cc clutch). Snap-on Stars of Karting is based at the Hilliard, OH headquarters of Rahal Letterman Racing and is sanctioned by the World Karting Association (WKA).
  • (11/12) - Felipe Giaffone races for Dreyer & Reinbold Racing in the IRL. He is returning to Brazil to race in a gruelling 500-mile kart race at his family's kart track. This annual race draws an impressive crowd of racers from around the world and is purely for fun. The race begins Saturday at midnight and runs for 12 hours. This will be the 8th running of this event on the 20-turn 7/8-mile circuit. The race consists of 74 FIA-mandated teams, which may have anywhere from 3-10 drivers. The karts are powered by 15 horsepower Honda GX engines.

    Last year the race was won by the team of Christian Fittipaldi (Nascar), Mario Haberfeld (CART) and Charles Fonseca (Brazilian Karter). They will be back to defend this weekend. From Formula One, drivers Rubens Barrichello, David Coulthard, Felipe Massa, Antonio Pizzonia, Juan Pablo Montoya and Luciano Burti will be among the 200 competing drivers. Tony Kanaan, Vitor Meira, and Dan Wheldon will join Giaffone as competitors from the IRL. Marco Andretti and Graham Rahal will be there, so might Oriol Servia and Roberto Moreno. Barrichello, Massa and Kanaan are two-time defending champions of this event. Sadly, it doesn't appear that the "500 Milhas da Granja Viana" will be televised here in Indiana.

  • Patrick Carpentier

  • (11/11) - Patrick Carpentier decides to quit Champcar and give the IRL a whirl next season. He is signing with Cheever, replacing Tony George's step-son, Ed Carpenter. Alex Barron will remain a driver at Cheever Racing next year. Capentier is a French-Canadian who moved up to CART in 1997. This year he finished 3rd in the standings. His Champcar team owner, Jerry Forsythe, is pissed judging by his remark, "I think it's a shame that Pat has decided to make a move now, and frankly I don't think this is a good career choice for him personally."
  • (11/11) - Eddie Cheever is dropping the Chevy engine and switching to Toyotas for power next year.
  • (11/11) - Chevy is backing out of Indycar after next season! Old-fashioned American Know-How has been replaced by Know-How-To-Pass-The-Buck at GM and Ford. These guys have come up with some creative and awry reasons for quitting open-wheel racing. 'Fess up fellas! The REAL REASON you're quitting is because the Japanese are kicking your lazy UAW asses! You can hide with your 60's technology in Nascar - but the Japanese will come for you there soon too. You should be ashamed!!!
  • Hmmm...
    Have you ever noticed that when race car drivers are interviewed, they always praise their teammates hardwork and give them all the credit?

    I wonder why you can never find the names and pictures of their crew on their websites. They always have plenty of pictures of themselves though.


    October 2004

  • (10/31) - The IRL had their end of year Award Banquet during a cruise to the Bahamas this weekend.

    The Super Aguri Fernandez Racing team suffered the loss of a teammate and friend over the weekend. John Martin Jr., 30, a mechanic, died in a surfing accident in Nassau. Known as LJ, he is survived by his parents John and Linda, and his girlfriend Megan.

    LJ
    John Martin, Jr.
    (1994-2004)

    The award show will be on ESPN2 Nov 9th at 4pm. Tony Kanaan and his Andretti-Green race team received a million dollar bonus check for winning the 2004 IRL Championship. (scroll down to 10/3 for a list of his accomplishments this year.)

    Thiago Medeiros, also driving the No. 11, won the IRL's Infiniti Pro Series Championship for his team: Sam Schmidt Motorsports. Medeiros won half of the 12 IPS races, including four in a row. He started from the pole position a series-record eight times. Medeiros and Sam Schmidt Motorsports team members were presented the Firestone Firehawk Cup by Menards IPS Executive Director Roger Bailey.

    Kosuke Matsuura accepted the Bombardier Rookie of the Year award and $50,000 bonus. Matsuura, one of three rookies in the IndyCar Series, had a high finish of fourth among his quartet of top-10s.

    Other Awards:
    Argent Mortgage Fastest Lap - Vitor Meira
    MBNA Pole Award - Buddy Rice
    EMCO Gears Hard Charger - Dan Wheldon
    IRL Rising Star - Vitor Meira
    Marlboro Lap Leader - Tony Kanaan
    IRL Marketer of the Year -Firestone
    IRL Promoter of the Year - Twin Ring Motegi
    IRL Championship general manager - Kyle Moyer
    IRL John Bearce Motorsports Chief Mechanic of the Year - Jeff Simon
    IRL engine manufacturer champion - Honda
    IRL championship team sponsor - 7-Eleven
    TAG Heuer Closest Finish Award winners - Rice and Meira
    IRL second-place championship driver - Dan Wheldon
    IRL third-place championship driver - Buddy Rice
    IRL second-place championship team - Andretti Green Racing
    IRL third-place championship team - Rahal Letterman Racing
    Infiniti Pro Series second-place championship driver - Paul Dana
    Infiniti Pro Series third-place championship driver - Arie Luyendyk Jr.
    Retirement recognition - Robbie Buhl, Al Unser Jr.
    Manufacturer recognition - Chevrolet, Toyota, Dallara, Panoz G Force, Firestone, Delphi, X-Trac.

  • (10/25) - Nascar's powerhouse team of Hendrick Motorsports suffered a terrible tragedy yesterday. A Hendrick Motorsports plane crashed on its way to the Nextel race in Martinsville Virginia, just seven miles from landing.
    Killed were:
    John Hendrick, 53, team president, brother of Rick
    Jennifer Hendrick, 22, John's daughter
    Kimberly Hendrick, 22, John's daughter
    Ricky Hendrick, 24, ex-Busch series driver and Rick Hendrick's son
    Jeff Turner, team's general manager
    Randy Dorton, team's chief engine builder
    Scott Lathram, 38, Tony Stewart's chopper pilot
    Dick Tracy, Hendrick's pilot
    Liz Morrison, Hendrick's pilot
    Joe Jackson, an executive at Dupont (sponsor)

    Hendrick Motorsports is based out of Charlotte N.C.
    Their racer drivers are Jimmie Johnson, Jeff Gordon, Terry Labonte and Brian Vickers.
    The drivers were not told until after the race was over. Johnson won the race and was excused from victory lane.

  • (10/17) - Helio Castroneves nabbed the last race of the year, while 2004 IndyCar Series champion Tony Kanaan placed second. Klein Tools/Jim Beam driver Dan Wheldon was third, followed by Vitor Meira and Adrian Fernandez.

    Barron and Franchiti wreck

    Dario Franchiti broke his foot in a wreck on Saturday. Towards the end of the Texas race, he collided with Alex Barron in a crash that sent Barron to the hospital.

    Dario Franchitti, #27 ArcaEx Dallara/Honda/Firestone:

    "It looks like we had exactly the same mechanical failure on the back of the car as yesterday. The first thing is that I hope Alex (Barron) is okay. I'm just completely upset that the same thing has happened twice this weekend; two mechanical failures resulting in my ending up in the wall twice. I'm not happy about that at all."

  • (10/14) - The injury Darren Manning sustained during qualifying at Fontana two weeks ago will force him to miss the last race of the season this weekend in Texas. Dr. Terry Trammell said the minor compression fracture of his sixth and seventh thoracic vertebrae was not serious and is healing quickly, but suggested he sit out the race incase he'd end up in another accident. Manning drives for Team Target Chip Ganassi.
  • (10/09) - CRISIS IN FORMULA ONE & CHAMPCAR?
    Ford is not only pulling the plug on the F1 Jaguar team, they are selling off Cosworth! This places the F1 teams Minardi and Jordan in a position of having no engines next season! If three teams leave F1 next season that will leave only six remaining teams(Ferrari, Williams BMW, BAR Honda, Toyota, Renault and Sauber), and 12 drivers! Even if each team had 3 drivers, there would only be 18 drivers.

    As a side note, all of the engines in Champcar are powered by Ford. Also Cheverolet has been using Ford help in the IRL.

  • (10/9) - Earnhardt says he'd rather be fined $200,000 than lose those 25 points!
  • (10/8) - Too late for Earnhardt, NBC is adding a 5-second delay to its NASCAR telecasts. ABC is adding a 5-second delay to its "Monday Night Football".
  • FCC notice: The following comments have been edited so as to not offend Nascar's Mike Helton.

    (10/6) - Well son of a #$%&! The @#$%^ NASCAR #$%@&* just fined Little E $10,000 and docked him 25 POINTS for uttering the phrase "doesn't mean s***" when NBC thrust their "live" mikes in his face after his win at Talladega last weekend. The points loss removed Dale from the championship lead!

    What these NASCAR #%@*$heads should have done is let the FCC handle it. Did Janet Jackson get fined and taken out of the championship for America's biggest slut contest when she flashed her freaky titty in the Super Bowl this year? No! The NFL let the FCC handle it and the FCC fined CBS $550,000! So let NBC get fined by the FCC if they don't want to use a 5-second delay to guard against slips of language! These men have been sweating and working their #$$ off for 4 hours in a duel with death. Trying to force these guys to turn into Emily Post after a race is ridiculous!!

    Are we just to believe that there is no care or tension in autoracing? Who is NASCAR trying to fool? I guarantee you that sportsmen were cussing like crazy even before the 60's when it became socially acceptable. Perhaps NASCAR needs to hire speechwriters for the drivers and they can just read off a piece of paper during interviews (can you say Formula One?)

    Can you imagine the amazing change there would be in politics if speechwriters were fired and the politicians said what they REALLY meant?? It would be revolutionary! Oh well, I %*&^$ digress...

  • (10/5) - With Jarno Trulli's early exit from Renault, things are shaken up at Toyota, where he was planning to drive next season. Toyota wants to take him now. They are letting him replace Ricardo Zonta in Japan this weekend, and they have asked Olivier Panis to retire one race early so that Zonta can race in his home country for the last race of the year - Brazil.

    Actually, Panis won't exactly retire, he will become the team's "third driver" next year (ie. he will race if one of the other drivers is injured.) Zonta will become a test driver and Trulli will be joined by Ralf Schumacher.

  • (10/4) - What would you think if the IRL began holding races in countries all over the world and did not have a race in the U.S.A.?

    In a similar vein, Bernie Ecclestone has excluded the British Grand Prix from the 2005 F1 schedule. He is once again blackmailing a nation for more money to host a formula one race. The event organizers at Silverstone say they cannot meet his price. Bernie naturally expects the British government to chip in, however they say they are not going to. So for now, the home of F1 will have no race!

    Bernie complains that this historic circuit pales in comparison to some of these new eastern country circuits. He's right. But so what? These fancy tracks, built in the middle of nowhere, cannot even sell out. How much fun money do you think the average Malaysian has? Yet you have these potentates spending a good portion of their GNP to build these execessive monuments to their (and Bernie's) vast egos. Is F1 more popular anywhere than merry old England?! I guess you can't expect some billionaire to stay in touch with reality.

  • (10/4) - In another blow to England's race fans, Ford is withdrawing the Jaguar team from F1. Jaguar has raced in Formula One for the past five years. It was created from the more successful Stewart team. Bobby Rahal served as team principal for part of a season at one point, and was replaced by Niki Lauda, who was soon let go too. Eddie Irvine drove for Jaguar the longest: three years.
  • (10/3) - Brazilian Tony Kanaan clinched the Indy Racing 2004 Championship today when he finished 2nd in Fontana. He had to start from the last row today after an engine misfire prevented his qualification. Yet he worked his way up to the front like the champion he is. Three accidents in the last dozen laps did not stop the race from finishing under green. Adrian Fernandez, who has been on a winning streak, out-dueled Kanaan on the last lap garner his 3rd win of the season.

    Kannan has had a Awesome Season!! So far this season, he's won three races: Phoenix, Texas and Nashville. He's placed 2nd six times: Japan, Indianapolis, Michigan, Nazareth, Fontana and Texas (a week later). And he's finished 3rd twice, 4th once, 5th three times and 8th in the first race of the season. Kanaan completed an IRL-record 3,305 laps in the No. 11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone over the course of the 16-race schedule.

  • (10/3) - Our most popular Sarah Fisher hasn't had the opportunity to race in the IRL since Indy. This weekend she got behind the wheel of a NASCAR West Series stock car down in Phoenix. She qualified 14th of 28 and finished 21st.

    I once said that there was a prejudice against women drivers in Indycar racing. Perhaps there is just a prejudice against IRL drivers. By this, I mean the new ex-CART powerhouse teams are prejudiced against the drivers who were brought into Indycar racing via the already existant IRL teams.

    Rahal-Letterman Racing ran Danika Patrick in the Toyota Atlantics this year and may be bringing her up to the IRL next year.



  • September 2004

  • (9/24) - The Infiniti Pro Series have added a race to their 2005 schedule - support race for the U.S. Grand Prix in Indianapolis!!
  • (9/24) - JV will be driving for Renault in the final three races of the F1 calendar this year, before moving to the Sauber team next season.
  • (9/15) - Jacques Villeneuve signed a 2-year deal with Sauber to begin next season. His testing with the Renault F1 team this week was followed by Jarno Trulli's exit from the team. Olivier Panis may be retiring from Toyota next year.

  • (9/15) - Tony George announced some new rules and formats for next year's Indy 500 that will make a better show for the fans!

    CARBURATION DAY
    There was always a big lull between Carb Day and Race day and many fans that came into town would have to miss Carb Day, which is one of the most fun days at the speedway. Also, local people would have to take 2 days off work: Go to Carb Day on Thursday, Recover from Carb Day on Friday! Tony is moving Carb Day to Friday! Also, the Infiniti Pro Series will be on the track Thursday.

    BUMP DAY
    Also, he has revamped qualifying and added a fourth day! Now, instead of the last day being Bump Day, EVERY qualification day will be Bump Day - and of course watching 'bumping' is a LOT of FUN! You see, on the first day of qualifications (Pole Day), only the first 11 starting positions of the 33-car field will be up for grabs and drivers toward the bottom can be bumped all day long by faster and faster speeds from their competitors. Grid positions 12-22 will be qualified for on the 2nd day of Qualifying. Grid positions 23-33 will be had the following weekend on the 3rd day of Qualifying. And finally on the last day, regular bumping of the field will take place.

    ROOKIE ORIENTATION
    Previously, the "500" rookies would get to practice in April, when no fans were at the speedway. Tony is moving this up to May 9th, which is Opening Day for the Indy 500 - So, we will get to watch the rookies out there alone for the first few days!

    Also, the INDY 500 will start at noon local time instead of 11 a.m.

    I think all these changes will be great! Way to go IRL!

  • (9/2) - The IRL has lined up a third non-oval race for next year. They will race on a street circuit in St. Petersburg. It will be on April 3, 2005. The course is nearly 2 miles long and has 14 corners.



  • August 2004

  • (8/17) - Ferrari has clinched the Manufacturer championship in Formula One and Honda has clenched it in the IRL.
  • (8/10) - The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is going to grind off 2.5" of pavement and repave the 2.5-mile oval. The previous repave was done in 1995. Repave does not include the infield portion of the roadcourse which was first layed in 2000.
  • (8/8) - Jeff Gordon lead the entire Brickyard 400 and won his 4th! There were 11 caution periods, the most mishaps in Brickyard 400's 10-year history.
  • BRICKYARD 400 WINNER

    Gordon wins 4th BY400

    JEFF GORDON WINS #4!!

  • (8/7) - Casey Mears gets the Pole!
    BRICKYARD 400 QUALIFYING ORDER

    Pos No Driver Make Speed
    1. 41 Casey Mears Dodge 186.293
    2. 0 Ward Burton Chevrolet 185.391
    3. 38 Elliott Sadler Ford 185.162
    4. 01 Joe Nemechek Chevrolet 184.976
    5. 8 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet 184.968
    6. 25 Brian Vickers* Chevrolet 184.665
    7. 12 Ryan Newman Dodge 184.332
    8. 42 Jamie McMurray Dodge 184.222
    9. 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet 184.090
    10. 40 Sterling Marlin Dodge 183.959
    11. 24 Jeff Gordon Chevrolet 183.910
    12. 9 Kasey Kahne* Dodge 183.842
    13. 19 Jeremy Mayfield Dodge 183.576
    14. 43 Jeff Green Dodge 183.557
    15. 97 Kurt Busch Ford 183.512
    16. 6 Mark Martin Ford 183.449
    17. 88 Dale Jarrett Ford 183.169
    18. 91 Bill Elliott Dodge 183.094
    19. 99 Jeff Burton Ford 183.027
    20. 31 Robby Gordon Chevrolet 182.960
    21. 5 Terry Labonte Chevrolet 182.916
    22. 100 Kenny Wallace Chevrolet 182.756
    23. 17 Matt Kenseth Ford 182.537
    24. 20 Tony Stewart Chevrolet 182.057
    25. 160 Jason Leffler Chevrolet 181.980
    26. 45 Kyle Petty Dodge 181.822
    27. 10 Scott Riggs* Chevrolet 181.800
    28. 15 Michael Waltrip Chevrolet 181.767
    29. 2 Rusty Wallace Dodge 181.712
    30. 77 Brendan Gaughan* Dodge 181.561
    31. 49 Ken Schrader Dodge 181.463
    32. 29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet 181.408
    33. 4 Jimmy Spencer Chevrolet 181.386
    34. 22 Scott Wimmer* Dodge 181.320
    35. 16 Greg Biffle Ford 181.243
    36. 23 Tony Raines Dodge 181.221
    37. 32 Ricky Craven Chevrolet 181.210
    38. 30 Dave Blaney Chevrolet 180.941
    PRV
    39. 18 Bobby Labonte Chevrolet
    40. 21 Ricky Rudd Ford
    41. 50 Todd Bodine Dodge
    42. 09 Scott Pruett Dodge
    43. 198 Derrike Cope Ford
    * Series rookie

    INDIANAPOLIS, Sunday, Aug. 8, 2004 --Jeff Gordon earned an unprecedented fourth Brickyard 400 victory Aug. 8 with a dominating performance in a wild, tumultuous race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

    Gordon, who was born in Vallejo, Calif. but spent his youth in nearby Pittsboro, Ind., became only the fourth driver to win a major event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway four times. His childhood racing hero, Rick Mears, won the Indianapolis 500 four times along with racing legends A.J. Foyt and Al Unser.

    "I'm blown away with four," Gordon said, "I can't believe it, really. You know, the thought went through my mind a couple times during the race today when we were really strong, we were out there running up front. I kept having to shake it off, going, 'Stop thinking about that.'

    "Even there toward the end at the caution there at the end, I knew that we had three laps to go, basically, I felt how special it was. It was starting to really get to me. I didn't realize how much this really meant to me, to win four. Then I had to shake that off because I had to get it done first."

    Gordon's four victories in the No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet in 11 Brickyard starts marks the shortest span in which a driver has scored four major victories at the legendary 2.5-mile Speedway. Mears won the "500" for the fourth time in his 14th start, Foyt won No. 4 in his 20th start, and Unser won for the fourth time in his 22nd start.

    "You know, I don't compare myself to Rick Mears and A.J. Foyt, Al Unser," Gordon said. "To me, the Indy 500 is always something unique and totally different than the Brickyard 400. I'm very proud to be a four-time winner, but I just will never allow those comparisons to really put us among equals with those Indy 500 winners."

    Gordon's previous Brickyard 400 victories came in the inaugural event in 1994, 1998 and 2001.

    The day was historic for NASCAR because the 2004 Brickyard 400 was the first NEXTEL Cup Series race to finish under the new "green-white-checkered" rule. The rule was implemented for the first time after Ryan Newman brought out the caution with an accident on Lap 155. Following cleanup, the field took the green flag on Lap 159, white flag on Lap 160 and checkered flag on Lap 161.

    Gordon finished ahead of Robert Yates Racing drivers Dale Jarrett and Elliott Sadler, who finished second and third in the No. 88 UPS Ford and No. 38 M&M's Ford, respectively. The race ended under checkered and caution flags due to an incident between Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Ricky Rudd on the back straightaway on the final lap.

    "I was hoping we wouldn't have that caution (on Lap 155) because it seemed that after we ran about two laps, I started going back toward Jeff a little bit," said Jarrett, the Brickyard 400's only other multi-time winner, with victories in 1996 and 1999. "I was really getting off of (Turns) 2 and 4, and it looked like I could gain on him a little. But getting to him and past him would have been something totally different. He had the best car looked like all day."

    Gordon and Sadler combined to lead all but five laps of the race, as Gordon led an event-record 124 laps, and Sadler led 32. Jarrett held the previous record of 117 laps, set in his dominating win in 1999.

    NEXTEL Cup Series rookie Kasey Kahne finished fourth in the No. 9 Dodge Dealers/UAW Dodge, and Tony Stewart finished fifth in the No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet.

    The race saw 13 cautions for 47 laps, both event records, which slowed the race pace to an average speed of 115.037 mph, the slowest average speed in event history.

    The field had completed only four laps when the first caution took place due to a single-car accident between Turns 1 and 2 involving No. 60 Jason Leffler. He was unhurt.

    Stewart and NEXTEL Cup points leader Jimmie Johnson next brought out separate cautions due to spins in which they did not hit the wall or other cars. Both continued, although Johnson dropped out on Lap 88 with an engine trouble, ending his day in 36th place.

    The biggest incident of the day occurred on the Lap 73 restart following a caution for Sterling Marlin, whose car had a flat tire on the backstraight. As the middle of the pack approached Turn 1, Greg Biffle and Rusty Wallace made contact, sending Wallace into the inside retaining wall separating the track and pit lane, and causing a chain-reaction eight-car melee. Scott Riggs, Ward Burton and Terry Labonte were eliminated from the race while Wallace, Bobby Labonte, Kyle Petty, Jeff Burton and Scott Wimmer continued with damage.

    Sadler led on the restart on Lap 79, but Gordon sent a strong message that his car was the one to beat by passing Sadler between Turns 1 and 2 on that lap. Gordon would relinquish the lead only once more, for one lap during pit stops.

    Defending series champion Matt Kenseth climbed from the 23rd starting position to become a factor, passing Sadler for second on Lap 105. But Kenseth could not catch four-time series champion Gordon, as he maintained an almost two-second advantage over Kenseth lap after lap.

    Gordon admitted he was fortunate to avoid trouble on Lap 142, as he ran over a piece of debris that dented the front end. Kenseth was not as lucky, as his No. 17 Smirnoff Ice/DeWalt Ford hit the debris and suffered a punctured tire. Kenseth rejoined the field following a pit stop for new right-side tires and finished 16th.

  • Other BY400 notes:
    (7/20) - 14 drivers tested this week at IMS in the final 2-day private session. Sterling Marlin hit 180.305 mph. A total of 39 drivers recorded 6,284 laps of testing over the last 3 weeks. Kevin Harvick, last year's 400 winner, joined Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. in skipping the practices so that they could save their test days for the 10-race chase for the series title. Harvick's pole speed last year was 184.343 mph.

    Tony Stewart brushed the wall today and Larry Foyt hit the turn 1 wall hard today wiping out his racer.

    (7/13) - 22 drivers tested yesterday and today at IMS. Jimmy Spencer had the fastest time (178.517 mph) Monday and Brian Vickers went 181.554 today.

    (7/7) - 3 drivers showed up at IMS for private testing. Bobby Labonte was quickest at 176.013 mph.

  • (8/5) - Jenson Button is leaving BAR and going to Williams next year!!! (Is BAR ready to go back to Villeneuve? Please,please,please...)
  • (8/5) - Cristiano de Matta, the prior CART champ, has been fired mid-season by Toyota. (How many CART dudes has this happened to?) AND, he's being replaced by Ricardo Zonta! Ew.
  • (8/3) - Nazareth Speedway in Pennsylvania will close after this year.
  • (8/3) - Many race fans have ached for years for the IRL to add some road courses to their schedule. They consider turning right and using more gear and speed changes an important aspect of racing that the IRL was missing. CART, F1 and NASCAR race on road courses, so why not the IRL? Were the drivers only good enough to turn left and keep the pedal to the floor? Not necessarily, although the newcomers to the IRL came mainly with just oval track experience. Not so today of course with the influx of the stars of CART.

    When the IRL began, one issue was the costs. Tony George was trying to start a world class racing league that was not nearly as expensive to compete in for the race teams as CART and Formula One were. A race car built for the ovals would not run on road courses without some changes in parts, like wings, suspension, tires and brakes. Also, NASCAR was doing quite well by running all 39 of its races on ovals except for two. The IRL only had 12 races at the time. Also, a desire to focus on the Indy 500 was helped by an all oval series.

    The road course fans of the IRL can now rejoice as the 2005 schedule was unveiled today. Of the 16 races on the IRL scheduel, 2 will be at roadcourses and a street course is in the works for St. Petersburg Florida. A year from now, the IRL will race at Sears Point (now referred to as Infineon Raceway) in Sonoma California. It is a 2-mile course with 10 turns. A month later they will race at Watkins Glen in N.Y.! That will be a 3.4-mile course with 11 turns. These are the same two road courses that NASCAR race on, but the Watkins Glen configuration will be a mile longer than the one Nascar has raced, the same config that F1 used to race on.

    The IRL will also only race once at Texas Motorspeedway next year.

    2005 IRL Schedule

  • (8/1) - The 2003 IRL champion, Scott Dixon, will be the first IRL driver featured on a box of Wheaties (breakfast of champions) cereal.


  • July 2004

  • (7/28) - Scott Dixon has been cleared to drive at this weekend's IRL race at the Michigan Speedway.
  • (7/28) - The Williams BMW F1 team confirmed the signing of Mark Webber for 2005 and the Renault team announced that Giancarlo Fisichella will join Fernando Alonso for its driver line up next year.
  • (7/25) - Lance Armstrong wins his record breaking 6th straight victory in the Tour de France.
  • (7/25) - Scott Dixon was forced to sit out the IRL's first race at the historic Milwaukee Mile due to some minor injuries sustained earlier in practice and qualifying.

    The crowd was estimated at 40,000. CART raced their earlier this year with a crowd estimated at 25,000.

  • (7/25) - Both drivers on the Toyota F1 team (Cristiano de Matta and Olivier Panis) will be replaced in 2005. Jarno Trulli has announced he will be leaving Renault and joining Ralf Schumacher at Toyota.
  • Buddy Rice & George Bush

  • (7/19) - David Letterman showed some footage last night of his Rahal Racing team partners joining Buddy Rice at the White House. They showed up with their Indy 500 winning car. President Bush came out and said hello. I noticed that Tony George butted his way into it. Letterman on the other hand was not there. Anyway the gang was invited in for a tour of the oval office.

    Buddy has been attending a lot of public relation events since winning the Indy 500. I bet he's finding it difficult to find time to continue racing!

  • (7/16) - Greg Ray is stepping out of the racecar to work on building up Access Motorsports. He has hired Mark Taylor who was just released from Panther Racing, to drive the rest of the season. Ray hopes to grow the team to two cars next season and step back into the racer. Its a tough business and he'll be lucky to get his car in the rest of the IRL races this season.
  • (7/9) - Patrick Racing is searching for the replacement driver for the recently retired Al Unser Jr. They will give Jaques Lazier an opportunity to race in the next IRL race which is in Nashville. They ran Jeff Simmons at Kansas last week. Jeff has been racing in the IRL's junior series - Infiniti Pro Series.
  • (7/08) - Ralf Schumacher will be switching to the Toyota F1 team next year. Since Montoya will be switching to McLaren next year, Williams BMW team will need two new drivers. Mark Webber from Jaguar is one of the most likely candidates to fill half this void at this time.
  • Roger Ward

  • (7/06) - Roger Ward, 2-time winner of the Indy 500, died yesterday at the age of 83. Roger's first Indy was in 1951 and his last was in '66. He won the 1959 and 1962 Indy 500's and he raced in the first Formula One U.S. Grand Prix in '59 and again in '63. He won the AAA national stockcar championship in '51.

    Ward joined the Air Force during WWII and became a P-38 fighter pilot and even flew B-17 bombers. His flying skills were so good he was retained as an instructor in instrument flying.

    Survivors include wife, Sherrie, sons Rodger Jr., David and Rick, and daughter, Robin. All were at Ward’s side when he passed away in hospice, as he had been in failing health for several months.

    Jim Rathmann is now the oldest surviving Indy 500 winner. The 76 y/o won the 1960 Indy 500.

  • (7/04) - Honda refused access to engines for Access Motorsports. The IRL team that Greg Rray has been trying to get off the ground, which competed in the last 3 IRL races, is behind in a payment to Honda because they haven't been able to get a primary sponsor. Access had to pack up their gear in Kansas and go home before they got to race.

    Indy 500 champion Buddy Rice won the Kansas race, only a few inches (.005 sec) infront of his Rahal/Letterman Racing teammate, Vitor Meira.

  • (7/1) - After being released from the hospital in Indianapolis with a sore back, Ralf Schumacher discovers he actually has a broken back - two fractured vertebrae. He will have to sit out of F1 Racing for 2-3 months. The BMW Williams team will look to their test driver, Marc Gene' to fill in for Ralf while he heals.
  • (7/1) - After attacking Brian Vickers after the NASCAR race last weekend, hot head Tony Stewart was fined $50,000 and docked 25 driver points. This was $10,000 less than his fine of two years ago when he shoved a photographer at the Brickyard 400. This year Stewart has had quite a few racing incidents this year where he blatantly crashes into someone, and then blames them:
    John Andretti at Daytona
    Scott Wimmer at Bristol
    Kurt Busch and Terry Labonte at Talladega
    Rusty Wallace at Fontana
    Jeff Gordon at Richmond.


  • June 2004

  • (6/30) - Al Unser Jr. announced his retirement from racing Indy cars after a 22-year career.

    Little Al's racing accomplishments:
    1992 Indy 500 Winner
    1994 Indy 500 Winner
    1994 Indy 500 Polesitter
    17 Indy 500's
    34 career victories in Indy cars
    327 races in Indy cars from 1982-2004.
    1990 CART champion
    1994 CART champion
    1986 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona winner
    1987 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona winner
    1986 IROC Champion
    1988 IROC Champion
    11 IROC victorys
    Unser started his career in sprint cars, competing in the World of Outlaws series in 1979-80 before moving to Super Vee competition in 1981 and Can-Am racing in 1982.

  • (6/30) - The Panther IRL team has fired 2003 Infiniti Pro Series Champion Mark Taylor since he has wrecked in five of the six races so far this season. He is being replaced by 29 y/o Townsend Bell who has competed in Indy Lights, CART and F3000.
  • (6/21) - Ralph Schumacher was released from the hospital in Indy and he returned home to Germany. He suffered a concussion, bruised back and some muscle strains during his shunt in Sunday's grand prix. The wreck knocked him out and he doesn't remember the wreck. It has not been decided whether he will race at the French g.p. in two weeks, but he will skip the test session in Jerez this week.
  • (6/20) - The beautiful, sunny 75-degree weather with a slight breeze continued for race day at the U.S. Grand Prix in Indianapolis. Juan Pablo Montoya had his usual large collection of fans present at the speedway. Unfortunately for him, his car died on the grid and would not start. As the cars pulled away for their warm-up lap, Juan jumped from his car and ran to his garage where his team got him into his backup car. Juan would have to start last from the pit lane. Juan would work his way up to 3rd place during the race. But with about 15 laps to go, the FIA race stewards black-flagged him because they said he broke a rule by taking longer than 15 seconds to get out of his car at the start. This was very bizarre and ironic, since it took the stewards over an HOUR to stop him.

    There was a 4-car pileup in the first turn of the race. Fernando Alonso had made a brilliant start, moving from the 5th row to 3rd place by the first turn. Unfortunately for him, he soon had a rear tire deflate that threw his car straight into the wall and the end of the front straight. Soon, Ralph Schumacher had a similar tire problem which threw him into a spin in the last turn and the back of his car hit the wall hard. An ambulance came and they put him on a stretcher and took him to the hospital.

    All of this action caused there to be quite a few laps behind the Safety Car. Michael Schumacher quickly got in front of Rubens and remained in the lead to the end. Ferrari finished with another 1-2 finish. Takuma Sato was happy to get his first podium finish. Zsolt was happy to get his first, and probably last, point. While not very fast, the McLarens managed to avoid trouble and finish in the points. Only 8 cars finished the race so everyone got some points!

    Michael Schumacher won the United States Grand Prix for Ferrari once more!

    2004 USGP WIN


    DAN'S PHOTOS FROM F1 WEEKEND

    2004 F1 Pit Walkabout Photos
    2004 F1 Practice Photos
    2004 F1 Quals and Race Photos



    2004 U.S. Grand Prix Results
    1.Michael SchumacherFerrari
    2.Rubens BarrichelloFerrari
    3.Takuma SatoBAR-Honda
    4.Jarno TrulliRenault
    5.Olivier PanisToyota
    6.Kimi RaikkonenMcLaren-Mercedes
    7.David CoulthardMcLaren-Mercedes
    8.Zsolt BaumgartnerMinardi-Cosworth

  • (6/19) - 2004 U.S. Grand Prix Qualifying

    1.Rubens BarrichelloFerrari
    2.Michael SchumacherFerrari
    3.Takuma SatoBAR-Honda
    4.Jenson ButtonBAR-Honda
    5.Juan Pablo MontoyaWilliams-BMW
    6.Ralf SchumacherWilliams-BMW
    7.Kimi RaikkonenMcLaren-Mercedes
    8.Olivier PanisToyota
    9.Fernando AlonsoRenault
    10.Mark WebberJaguar
    11.Cristiano da MattaToyota
    12.David CoulthardMcLaren-Mercedes
    13.Christian KlienJaguar
    14.Giancarlo FisichellaSauber-Petronas
    15.Felipe MassaSauber-Petronas
    16.Nick HeidfeldJordan-Ford
    17.Giorgio PantanoJordan-Ford
    18.Gianmaria BruniMinardi-Cosworth
    19.Zsolt BaumgartnerMinardi-Cosworth
    20.Jarno TrulliRenault

  • (6/18) - Frank Williams stated that he is lining up two new Formula One drivers for 2005 - Scott Dixon from the IRL and ex-F1 champ Jacques Villeneuve!!
  • (6/15) - Due to illegal brake ducts, the Williams and Toyota teams were disqualified after the Canadian Grand Prix.
  • (6/12) - Ralf Schumacher took pole again for the Canadian grand prix. The Williams clocked 1:12.275. A year ago, his pole time was 1:15.529. Quite an improvement. His brother Michael qualified back in 6th.


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