No Indy 500 thread?

Wow. I remember as a kid this race was HUGE. I don’t know why it doesn’t seem that way anymore. Maybe it is the ESPN coverage with the “side by side” nonsense that makes it seem like just another race. Maybe I’m getting older. I dunno, but the fact that there is not even a thread here shows how the mighty has fallen.

Nope. Someone should start one.

Two things.

  1. Open-wheel racing has been on the decline in the U.S. for several years.

  2. The coverage this year was awful. “Now, let’s show you that pass for the lead that happened while we were talking about something else.”

I haven’t watched the Race yet, as I’m in Indianapolis (broadcast delay). The coverage here this month has been awful as well - May is special in Indy, but it just hasn’t had the same buzz that it has in the past (at least for the 10 years I’ve lived here). They reworked Pole Day to offer much more excitement, but there wasn’t much build up at all. Everything was sped up - I think they started later. It hasn’t helped that there was so much rain, washing out a lot of practice days. If it was a boring race, it may have been due to the lack of practice the racers have had.

Not sure of this needs a spoiler, but just to be safe in case anyone hasn’t watched it yet:

Mike Conway’s crash on the last lap was spectacular.

That’s a really good way of putting it.

It’s definitely worth the read if you’re an open-wheel racing fan.

As for the race, it started off badly with Scheckter wrecking out Hamilton and it ended just as badly with a colossal wreck that not even a decade ago probably would have killed one of the drivers. Congratulations are due to Franchitti but unfortunately the 500 isn’t even the best race being held at IMS this year. And that’s a damn shame.

EDIT: Fixed it quick and dirty for those who haven’t seen the race yet and don’t want to know who won, but if you don’t want to know don’t come in to threads like this.

Did anyone see the comments by Marco Andretti after the race? I know he’s young and prone to whining, but has anyone heard of a follow-up review re: passing on the yellow?

Excellent article. Thanks for the link. It seems as if NASCAR just did a better marketing job to propel it to the forefront while open wheeled racing was fighting with itself.

To me, that might explain why NASCAR became the dominant sport, but I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that the Indy-fricking-500 race itself has fallen so far. Maybe if Danica Patrick was a little better and won a race, or if an Andretti won again, then it would gain some prestige back.

Spoiler tagged that for the posters in Indianapolis who would have been given some hints about today’s race.

I remember when they used to do that for the whole country. You couldn’t watch the race live. Had to wait until night time to watch it, and carefully avoid all TV news and radio if you didn’t want it spoiled. I can’t see the reason for that now. Do the powers that be in Indianapolis also block the internet? :slight_smile:

WOW! I usually “TLDR” anything more than a few paragraphs, but that was a great piece. :slight_smile:

It really is amazing that Conway survived that wreck. The car literally came apart around him.

Well, the cars are designed that way. On the replays of even minor wrecks yesterday, you could see debris scattering all around. The idea is to dissipate the force of the impact. Open wheel cars simply can’t use the NASCAR standard of preserving the car itself as protection; there’s just not enough car there. But yes, it was a hell of a wreck.

Sateryn76, don’t know if you caught this - Andretti was moved up to third, and Lloyd, Dixon, and Patrick were each dropped a spot.

Penske racing had a bad day. They can do that: win the race or else have a series of blunders that doom them. This time it was the latter.

Franchitti had a dominating day and deserved the win. Danica stayed out of trouble to finish high. Clearly the poor qualifying effort wasn’t her fault.

I thought it was a pretty good race. Agreed, the coverage always blows. Get rid of that “side by side” commercial stuff, just go to the commercial already. I thought Jack Nickolson on the flags was fun.

At least this year I didn’t see the virtual billboards photoshopped into the infield.

I was happy to see that Marco got the podium - I just feel so bad for him, having to carry the Andretti flag, and having that gas bag of a father. Plus, he’s kinda cute :slight_smile:

I read that CART/IRL piece, and it is fantastic. I was raised in a family that went to the Race every year, and attended quite a few Times Trials in my youth. I’m glad to see that it may be on the mend. And, while I can’t stand her, I have to begrudgingly give credit to Patrick for bringing a little star power back to the circuit.

And boo to Sam Hornish and others for abandoning IRL for NASCAR. I hate NASCAR with the fury of a thousand suns, and they will change the Indy 500 into a NASCAR event over my dead body. Well, I must say it would be something I can see myself marching in protest against.

I think I’m going to watch IRL races in the non-football season.

I don’t think it was the side-by-side thing that was the problem. It just seemed to me that even when they weren’t sharing the screen with commercials, the coverage was rambling and unfocused. They showed Power leaving the pits with the fuel hose still attached, but then what? Is that a penalty? Stuff like that.

Good, but it left me with a few questions, as well. It mentioned some moves that Tony George made to try to secure the independence of the Speedway after the CART split, like hosting the USGP (which fizzled after a few years) and Brickyard 400 (which seems to be prestigious among the drivers, but I don’t know if it’s been lucrative for the track), but never really said what the end results of those were. How did those contribute to the financial losses suffered over the time period covered by the article?

This is probably a stupid question, but I’m assuming the flags are somehow tethered to the flag stand? I’d be embarrassing as hell to wave the green flag to start the Indy 500, then have to turn around and wave the yellow one because you dropped the damn thing on the track. :smiley:

ABC’s coverage was pretty woeful by any measure…they used to win Emmy’s for their coverage of this race. However the shot of the remains of Conway’s car falling on and knocking out Hunter-Reay’s in-car camera reminded me of the famous shot of Cogan’s car knocking out the camera at the end of pitlane years ago. They missed Franchitti’s pass for the lead on lap 1 (sure, they had to cover the accident in mid-field, but they didn’t even show it in replay so I assume they missed it completely) and there were various other head-slapping moments. (See my “live from the couch” twitter updates here).

The Speedway is a private corporation, so any speculation to their financial well-being/history is a secret. The Brickyard race surely provided the extra cash for Tony to launch the IRL. The USGP surely didn’t make the track any money (Bernie Eccelstone makes sure of that), but I’m willing to bet that any money lost in the effort to host the USGP pales in comparison to what Tony threw at the IRL to keep it afloat through the split.

I had the exact same thought. I would bet they have a safety strap. You wouldn’t want to drop that onto some guys head or even the track. :wink:

Doesn’t look like it in these pictures of Peyton Manning. This one of the checkered flags might be too far away, but I don’t see anything (and you can see the other 8 flags in the shot).