IndyCar’s Chopping Block: A Gory Recent History

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It’s a bloody business ending people’s careers, although not so long ago it was a good deal worse when one’s fate literally rested in the executioner’s hands. At the risk of sounding unsympathetic or even – gasp! – ‘mean spirited,’ IndyCar’s a business and personnel changes are a grim but necessary aspect of the sport. Besides these folks get paid handsomely to ‘work’ in IndyCar, which would be a dream job for millions. Sentimentality aside, let’s cut to the chase and review the recent terminations and potential axing of some of IndyCar’s more recognizable faces.

sebsaavautosportcom

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Living the dream until lately, Sebastian Saavedra made fifty seven big league starts and has absolutely no results. Never coming close to a win, the quirky Colombian failed to crack the top five and only recorded three top tens in the equivalent of four seasons. He’s finished at the very bottom of the field with KVSH two years running now. You may recall his one highlight turned out to be a disaster, as pole position at the inaugural Indy Grand Prix led to a stall and spectacularly expensive carbon fiber shower. In SeSaav’s case as in others it was high time a quick cut was made.

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Ryan Briscoe had a decent IndyCar career over the last decade with seven wins, but it appears to be in the past tense.  The Aussie’s gotten multiple opportunities with the top teams in the sport – Ganassi, Penske, Ganassi – yet yielded few results as of late. He hasn’t won since 2012 and finished first only twice in the last five IndyCar seasons. Oh well, at least his wife has a steady income from ESPN.

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British tree Justin Wilson is used to contractual uncertainty as he’s been with Dale Coyne for the better part of a decade now. Although AR1’s Brian Carroccio doubts it, there’s a very real possibility that JWil won’t be driving an IndyCar for the first time in many years. That means not only is the series possibly losing a genuinely good guy, but also Great Britain may be down to one full time driver in the series. Blimey!

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Photo from indycar.com

Last and definitely least is Beaux Barfield. His three year reign over IndyCar race control was flashy and controversial, neither of which are favorable traits in a race director. A director should be like the NFL’s replay referees in New York – never seen but making certain the critical calls are made correctly. Poor ol’ Beaux always seemed to get that backwards, often seen though rarely for the right reasons. Hence, he too was cut. We’re confident that Jan Beekhuis and crew can do better, else ye olde chopping block stands at the ready for them, as well.

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Photo from indycar.com

There are fates worse than losing a job. Simona de Silvestro, J.R. Hildebrand and race winner Carlos Huertas remain in limbo, locked away in the tower tortuously awaiting their IndyCar fates.

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