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  • JULY 2006

  • (7/30) - The Michigan Indycar race was delayed 2 1/2 hours due to rain, so it was not telecast live on ABC. I saw it later on ESPN2. Helio Castroneves won the pole, his team-mate Sam Hornish Jr. beside him.
  • Hornish would retire with an overheated engine, but Castroneves went on to win and also capture the lead in points, moving Hornish into 2nd place. Vito Meira once again finished the race in 2nd place.

    Danica Patrick was very angry after running out of fuel in the closing laps, stomping her feet and even dropping her helmet. She dropped from around 8th to 17th. Scott Dixon, who has won two races this year, dropped out early when he ran out of fuel. Marty Roth raced today, he has previously only shown up for the last couple Indy 500's. He own his own team and he was no where near the pace of this fast race which had an average speed of nearly 194 mph!

    There is currently only 56 points seperating the top 5 drivers, making this season the closest ever. IRL Point Standings

  • (7/30) - (Champcar in San Jose) A helmeted Alex Tagliani got in the face of a bald Paul Tracy after Tracy wrecked him. Alex was saying the F-word repeatedly and NBC obviously isn't on a delay! At first Tracy ignored him, but it finally came to blows. What was little Alex thinking? Tracy left him lying on the ground.

    Sebastian Bourdais won the race.

  • fight fight

  • (7/27) - Williams F1 will be switching to Toyota engines next year. They have signed a 3-year deal. Williams parted company with long time engine supplier BMW, which switched to the Sauber Team. This year Williams have been using Cosworth power. No mention was made of Toyota's current engine deal with MF1 but it seems likely that the relationship will terminate at the end of this season.
  • (7/25) - Happily for Indycar fans, Danica Patrick wants to win some Indycar races and is remaining in the IRL despite recent rumors. She is switching teams however, to Andretti-Green Racing.
  • (7/23) - NASCAR waved the black flag on Tony Stewart and Carl Edwards for two separate on track incidents at Pocono International Raceway.

    Just 31 laps into the race, Clint Bowyer ran Tony Stewart up the race track and the No. 20 Chevrolet tapped the wall. In retribution, Stewart stuffed Bowyer, who ended up spinning and collecting Carl Edwards.

    NASCAR black-flagged Stewart and held him for a one lap penalty on pit road for aggressive driving. To further make their point, he was ruled ineligible to receive the lucky dog (lap back rule) for the remained of the race.

    "What happened with me and Clint had nothing to do with Carl," Stewart said. "I'm sorry he got into it, but it all started with the 07 car. If he would have just used a little give and take at the beginning of it, none of us would have been in that position in the first place. So instead we had two guys that had driving penalties and two other guys that got their cars tore up. So one guys not being patient and using give and take cost four guys a rough day."

    Edwards just couldn't let bygones be bygones and sought his revenge on the orange car some 40 laps later.

    During a round of pit stops at lap 70 as Edwards and Stewart approached pit road, Edwards spun Stewart out. NASCAR black-flagged Edwards, also holding him a lap and made him ineligible for the lucky dog as well.

    "Man, I've got to choose my words carefully," Edwards said. "Let me just say this, if it weren't for respect of the sport and the people watching and his team and everything, he'd be out there bleeding right now. That's so frustrating. How can a person make it this far in life being that much of a jerk. He ran into Clint (Bowyer). I saw it on the big screen.

    "He turned into Clint and took both him and I out and probably made it just about impossible for us to make the chase, and then when I pull up beside him and wave my hand like, 'What was that about?' He gives me the finger. I mean, what a jerk. I don't even know what to say. It's amazing to me that someone can be that special."

  • (7/11) - After Juan Pablo Montoya announced he would switch from F1 to stock cars next year, McLaren booted him right out the door. Now if he would have said he was moving to a team within F1, he would likely be able to finish the season. I think he was going to leave at the end of the season anyway to make room for entrance of reigning champ Fernando Alonso in 2007. I guess the snobbery at McLaren is more important than winning - Montoya is being replaced by Pedro de la Rosa.
  • (7/11) - Jeff Bucknum will be replacing Felipe Giaffone at Foyt Enterprises. Jeff hails from Arizona and has competed in two Indy 500's.
  • (7/10) - NASCAR drivers will be testing at the speedway this week.
  • (7/9) - A.J. Almendinger wins again! Three Champcar races in a row! Sebastien Bourdais better look out.
  • (7/9) - Juan Pablo Montoya having won 7 races in 6 years, is returning to the U.S. and Ganassi racing. But wait a minute! He's going to be driving in NASCAR, not Indycar! I'd rather see him in the IRL, but I can't blame him for wanting to try something new. Villeneve is reportedly having similar thoughts. This could prove interesting. I'm curious as to how the NASCAR fans will react.
  • (7/6) - The Penske race shop in Reading PA was flooded by 4 feet of water. Some repair equiment was ruined. The shop will be moving to North Carolina in the Fall.
  • (7/6) - The U.S. Grand Prix provides a nice boost to the economy of Indianapolis. One source says the F1 race has brought in 1 billion dollars to the city since 2000, another says over $100 mill a year. I highly doubt it. None the less, it certainly doesn't hurt the hotels and restaurants downtown. A new contract must be forged by Tony George and Bernie Ecclestone to bring the circus back next year. Since it is possible George might deem the price too steep, Indy's mayor, Bart Peterson mentioned he'd be open to considering aid from the city. George however shot that idea down, as his grandfather did not want the speedway to become a drain to the tax payer. Wouldn't it be nice for Indy if the Simons (who own the Pacers) and Irsay (the owner of the Colts) was as high minded? I don't know how those bastards can sleep at night. Hey, here's a thought. Maybe we should elect Tony George mayor!
  • (7/5) - 2005 Nascar Champion Tony Stewart is being honored at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum with his own display. I found this remarkable since he has only won 1 time at IMS. Helio Castroneves has won twice, Jeff Gordon has won 4 times and Michael Schumacher and incredible 5 times. Perhaps it is because he's a native and has raced in the IRL, NASCAR and IROC here at the speedway. I think its because he's simply more popular in the U.S. than those others. Just not with me.
  • (7/2) - Brian Barnhart says the IRL is thinking of adding a race next year in Iowa.
  • Hornish over Wheldon

  • (7/2) - Indycar raced at Kansas Speedway today. Indy 500 Champion Sam Hornish, Jr. won on his 27th birthday pushing him into the points lead! Once again Dan Wheldon found himself on the outside of a Penske car in the closing laps, dueling for the win in side-by-side racing. As usual this year, poor Dan found himself in 2nd place.

    Misfortune continued for Rahal Letterman racing as Buddy Rice slid into the wall wrecking his new Dallara chassis. Scott Sharp also slid into the wall when part of his suspension broke. Both drivers were ok. Helio Castroneves also had contact with the wall, however Team Penske was able to get his car fixed and back into the race.

    1. (2) Sam Hornish Jr., Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $125,800
    2. (1) Dan Wheldon, Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $104,850
    3. (6) Vitor Meira, Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $80,750
    4. (3) Scott Dixon, Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $63,000
    5. (13) Tony Kanaan, Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $57,300
    6. (4) Helio Castroneves, Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $50,200
    7. (8) Tomas Scheckter, Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $50,700
    8. (5) Kosuke Matsuura, Dallara-Honda, 200, Running $47,400
    9. (11) Marco Andretti, Dallara-Honda, 199, Running $47,400
    10. (17) Jeff Simmons, Dallara-Honda, 199, Running $45,900
    11. (12) Danica Patrick, Dallara-Honda, 198, Running $44,400
    12. (14) Dario Franchitti, Dallara-Honda, 198, Running $43,100
    13. (15) Bryan Herta, Dallara-Honda, 197, Running $41,800
    14. (19) Eddie Cheever Jr., Dallara-Honda, 196, Running $40,200
    15. (7) Buddy Lazier, Dallara-Honda, 194, Running $38,900
    16. (16) Ed Carpenter, Dallara-Honda, 184, Running $37,500
    17. (9) Buddy Rice, Dallara-Honda, 174, Accident $36,100
    18. (10) Scott Sharp, Dallara-Honda, 165, Accident $38,100
    19. (18) Felipe Giaffone, Dallara-Honda, 66, Handling $34,600

    Race Statistics
    Winner's average speed: 167.331 mph
    Time of race: 01:49:00.3423
    Margin of victory: 0.0793 of a second
    Cautions: 4 caution flags for 31 laps
    Lead changes: 13 among 4 drivers

    Lap leaders: Wheldon 1-6, Hornish 7-40, Dixon 41-45, Hornish 46-98, Wheldon 99, Hornish 100-137, Wheldon 138-139, Hornish 140-148, Wheldon 149-153, Sharp 154, Wheldon 155-183, Hornish 184-196, Wheldon 197-198, Hornish 199-200.

    Point standings: Hornish 300, Castroneves 280, Dixon 261, Wheldon 257, Meira 227, Kanaan 206, Sharp 176, Franchitti 175, Matsuura 173, Andretti 172.


    MS wins 5th

  • (7/2) - The hot weather continued in Indianapolis with temperatures around 90. At the first two turns of the first lap, multiple accidents occurred which knocked both McLarens out of the race. Nick Heidfeld's car soared into the air, doing barrel-rolls across the gravel. Then Takuma Sato and Tiago Monteiro clashed, resulting in both of them retiring. The field dropped from 22 to 12.

    The two Ferraris streaked off and continued to pull away from the rest of the field. By the end, there were only 8 cars left. If was sadly reminiscent of last year's poor race, where the two Ferraris dominated the two poorest teams on the grid .

    I read in the Indy Star yesterday that Scott Speed said he'd never seen the Indy 500 and was not interested. I was taken back by that as it was not a very good P.R. move. Is he that ignorant of racing, or afraid of acknowleding achievements of others, or what?

    Michael Schumacher won the event again - his 5th time, not counting the victory he handed over to Rubens Barrichello in '02. Schumi has become the first 5 time winner at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway...the Wilt Chamberlain of F1.

  • 2006 USGP Results

    Pos  Driver  Nat  Team  Time  Status 
    1.  Michael Schumacher  Ferrari  33:35.199  
    2.  Felipe Massa  BR  Ferrari  7.984  
    3.  Giancarlo Fisichella  Renault  16.595  
    4.  Jarno Trulli  Toyota  23.604  
    5.  Fernando Alonso  Renault  28.401  
    6.  Rubens Barrichello  BR  Honda  36.516  
    7.  David Coulthard  GB  Red Bull-Ferrari  -1 lap  
    8.  Vitantonio Liuzzi  Toro Rosso-Cosworth  -1 lap  
    9.  Nico Rosberg  Williams-Cosworth  -1 lap  
    DNF  Ralf Schumacher  Toyota  on lap 63  Wheel bearing 
    DNF  Christijan Albers  NL  MF1-Toyota  on lap 38  
    DNF  Jacques Villeneuve  CDN  BMW  on lap 24  Engine 
    DNF  Tiago Monteiro  MF1-Toyota  on lap 10  Accident 
    DNF  Takuma Sato  Super Aguri-Honda  on lap 7  Accident 
    DNF  Jenson Button  GB  Honda  on lap 4  
    DNF  Kimi Raikkonen  FIN  McLaren-Mercedes  on lap 1  Accident 
    DNF  Nick Heidfeld  BMW  on lap 1  Accident 
    DNF  Juan Pablo Montoya  COL  McLaren-Mercedes  on lap 1  Accident 
    DNF  Mark Webber  AUS  Williams-Cosworth  on lap 1  Accident 
    DNF  Scott Speed  USA  Toro Rosso-Cosworth  on lap 1  Accident 
    DNF  Christian Klien  Red Bull-Ferrari  on lap 1  Accident 
    DNF  Franck Montagny  Super Aguri-Honda  on lap 1  Accident 

  • (7/1) - 1995 Indianapolis 500 winner Jacques Villeneuve posted his best qualifying of the year after slotting his BMW Sauber into sixth place on the grid. It is his best starting spot since he lined up fourth for the 2005 season opener in Australia. It is also the best yet qualifying place for the newly formed BMW Sauber team.

    American F1 rookie Scott Speed obtained his best qualifying performance of the season, putting his Toro Rosso Cosworth 13th on the grid. Speed hails from Manteca, Calif.

  • US GP starting grid

    Pos  Driver  Nat  Team  Qualifying time  Notes 
    1.  Michael Schumacher  Ferrari  1:10.832   
    2.  Felipe Massa  BR  Ferrari  1:11.435   
    3.  Giancarlo Fisichella  Renault  1:11.920   
    4.  Rubens Barrichello  BR  Honda  1:12.109   
    5.  Fernando Alonso  Renault  1:12.449   
    6.  Jacques Villeneuve  CDN  BMW  1:12.479   
    7.  Jenson Button  GB  Honda  1:12.523   
    8.  Ralf Schumacher  Toyota  1:12.795   
    9.  Kimi Raikkonen  FIN  McLaren-Mercedes  1:13.174   
    10.  Nick Heidfeld  BMW  1:15.280   
    11.  Juan Pablo Montoya  COL  McLaren-Mercedes  1:12.150   
    12.  Mark Webber  AUS  Williams-Cosworth  1:12.292   
    13.  Scott Speed  USA  Toro Rosso-Cosworth  1:12.792   
    14.  Christijan Albers  NL  MF1-Toyota  1:12.854   
    15.  Tiago Monteiro  MF1-Toyota  1:12.864   
    16.  Christian Klien  Red Bull-Ferrari  1:12.925   
    17.  David Coulthard  GB  Red Bull-Ferrari  1:13.180   
    18.  Takuma Sato  Super Aguri-Honda  1:13.496   
    19.  Nico Rosberg  Williams-Cosworth  1:13.506   
    20.  Jarno Trulli  Toyota  1:13.787   
    21.  Vitantonio Liuzzi  Toro Rosso-Cosworth  1:14.041   
    22.  Franck Montagny  Super Aguri-Honda  1:16.036   

  • (7/1) - The two Ferraris had the fastest times in practice Saturday, led by Michael Schumacher who did a 1:10.760
  • (7/1) - Honda third driver Anthony Davidson kicked off the US Grand Prix weekend at Indianapolis with the fastest time in the first practice session Friday, 1:12.083. Ferrari's Michael Schumacher only did one flying lap but it was enough for second quickest, just under four tenths off. Davidson bettered his morning time by less than a tenth of a second in the second session.
  • (7/1) - The contract between IMS and Formula One ends this year. Will they be back? While F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone had made some comments about not caring if they raced in the U.S. or at Indy again, some of the management of F1 find it important to race in the U.S.:

    Norbert Haug (Mercedes-Benz Motorsport VP): "We are a German-American company officially, and if I could, then I wish we could have at least two races in America... (The U.S.) is important for us. It is our second-biggest market for Mercedes Benz and is obviously very important for our hosts, Chrysler, and we are producing a lot of cars over there. Of course, we want to support America, and I think we need to explore America further in F1 in the future."

    Mario Theissen (BMW Motorsport Director): "It would be very important for the (auto) manufacturers (to race in the U.S.). America is basically the only big country in which F1 does not play the dominant role in motorsport, and I think we shouldn't give up on achieving this. The Indianapolis race has in the previous years had the biggest attendance of all the (F1) races, and I think it would certainly be worth to follow up on this or even to have a second one... With regards to sales figures, the U.S. is the most important market for the BMW Group, as there we have the two biggest production facilities outside Germany."

    Jean Todt (Ferrari General Director): "We like racing in the U.S. Just to recall that Ferrari has its biggest market in the U.S. - one-third of our cars are sold in this country - so for the visibility of Ferrari and of F1 we think it's important to do this race."

    Nick Fry (CEO of Honda Racing): "I'd say we think it's very important to have a race in America and would like more than one."

    Christian Horner: "For Red Bull it's an important event. You know, it's obviously their single biggest market. For us to have a Grand Prix in the U.S. is important for us."

    Aguri Suzuki - "The United States, is very important in Grand Prix, but here last year and this year. But I want to continue in Grand Prix here. Especially I have factory here near. Is many my employees coming here. I want to continue Grand Prix especially here, yeah."

    Frank Williams - "The world's largest economy by an enormous amount. Money is required very much in Formula One. Three of our main sponsors are from the USA, and we very much need presence here.

  • (7/1) - After last year's debacle, where most of the field withdrew from the race because one turn of the IMS oval was too much for their expensive race cars, I was surprised to hear some driver's comments:

    Nick Heidfeld (German) - "It is something special to drive on the banking, although basically this is a simple task as you just go flat out."

    Rubens Barrichello (Brazilian) - "It feels good to drive through the first corner of the oval banking flat out, although it is an easy corner for us in an F1 car."

  • (7/1) - Most F1 drivers were available for interviews and autographs on Thursday's Pit Walkabout. The interviews were broadcast later on television and included Fernando Alonso, Juan Pablo Montoya, Jacques Villeneuve and Michael Schumacher. This surprising turnout for the fans (surprising for F1 that is) was likely due to the black-eye they recieved at last year's U.S. grand prix.

  • June 2006

  • (6/25) - Indycar race at Richmond: Vitor Meira finished 2nd once again... always a brides maid, never a bride. 2006 Indy 500 champion Sam Hornish, Jr. won the race.
  • (6/25) - A.J. Almendinger does it again, winning at Burke airport in Cleveland. A.J. also got engaged inbetween jobs 2 weeks ago, before coming back to Champcar and winning two races in a row!
  • (6/24) - Here is a photo of Danica Patrick's mobile home which she takes to the races to live in with her hubby. It is 45-foot long and has 500 square feet. They have a kind of mirror on the ceiling over the bed. Oh yeah.

  • Marathon Coach is the official motorcoach of the IndyCar Series.

  • (6/18) - Sometimes a little shakeup is what a driver needs. Allmendinger, after switching teams this past week, then won his first Champcar race. This is his 3rd year in Champcar.
  • (6/16) - American Champcar driver A.J. Allmendinger has found a ride with Forsythe Racing.
  • (6/16) - Home of the U.S. Nationals, the Indianapolis Raceway Park has been around since 1961. A company is moving into Indy by the name of O'Reilly Auto Parts. They are out of Springfield Illinois. They are going to pay the the NHRA to rename it "O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis". The NHRA gets the money instead of the track, however they will be using some of it to continue to make improvements to this complex which is actually west of Indianapolis in Clermont.
  • (6/11) - Rookie Denny Hamlin started from pole and won the Nextel Cup race at Pocono. He also won the first "race" of the year in Daytona, winning the "Bud Shootout".
  • (6/11) - Champcar team RuSPORT announced they were replacing driver A.J. Allmendinger with Cristiano Di Matta. A.J. was Champcar's only American driver.
  • (6/10) - Like the Indy 500, the Texas night race featured Dan Wheldon leading almost the entire thing, and then team Penske coming along with better pit stops and capturing the win. This time however, Helio Castroneves drove the Penske car past the two Ganassi racers. Sam Hornish, Jr. finished fourth. Wheldon, understandably, left the track very upset. Unlike many previous IndyCar races at Texas Motorspeedway, this one did not provide a lot of side-by-side action.
  • Tom Carnegie

  • (6/9) - The Indy 500 will be losing one of its many traditions next year. Tom Carnegie, who has been the P.A. announcer since 1946, is retiring at age 86. We'll miss his deep, smooth "aaaand he's on it!"
  • (6/8) - Cheever responded to insults from Papa Mikey and Danica, saying neither of them are Indy 500 champions whereas he is. So take that!
  • (6/4) - The IRL ran one of their 3 roadcourses of the year, this one at Watkins Glen in NY. The IRL drivers encountered some rain and fog at the start and finish of the race. Scott Dixon won the race for the second straight time. Eddie Cheever, Jr. pulled a boner and knocked Marco Andretti off course and them both out of the race. Papa Mikey let loose a tirade on television, calling Cheever an idiot and saying he did it on purpose and saying he didn't belong in the IRL. Vitor Meira won another 2nd place finish. He has yet to win.
  • (6/4) - Perhaps Champcar should have sent some teams to the Indy 500 to get some practice on ovals, as today's race at their only oval track, Milwaukee, seemed to be a nonstop yellow. Hopefully the IRL will put on a better show there next month. Incidentally, Sebastien Bourdais, the Champcar 2004 & 2005 Champ, is now "four for four" having won today's race. His 175.394 mph qualifying lap put him on the pole for the race, however his average winning speed was 116 mph.
  • (6/1) - Al Unser, Jr. and Michael Andretti were offered a deal to race in the IRL Texas race by the Texas Speedway, but both turned it down, apparently worn out from Indy in May.

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