Photo from blogs.wsj.com
UPDATE: AP is reporting the season opening IndyCar race scheduled in Brasilia, Brazil has been canceled by local authorities. The costly construction and renovations at the race course have been ongoing for some time and could well be the issue. This is truly a crisis for IndyCar and makes an already short season even shorter. We’ve offered alternatives to a race in Brazil as well as skepticism towards holding a race there for months now. It was another poor decision by the series to schedule a race in Brazil to begin with and now once again it’s the fans who suffer due to a further abbreviated schedule.
Photo from indycar.com
Brian Barnhart Battles Back: IndyCar announced Wednesday that Brian Barnhart will resume his former duties as Race Director. He’d served in that role from 1997 until 2011, after which ‘Beautiful’ Beaux Barfield took over due to controversies at New Hampshire and elsewhere. The system, described as being like a “jury,” will consist of three stewards who make the calls and assess the penalties collaboratively. Mindful of the anti-Barnhart and anti-IRL sentiment that exists in some quarters, we say anybody but Beaux.
Photo from indystar.com
Drivers’ Meeting in Indy: The Barnhart announcement was made at the winter drivers’ meeting at IMS. Of note were some of the drivers in attendance, including Americans Conor Daly and Zach Veach, British brothers Justin and Stefan Wilson, and Colombians Carlos Huertas and Sebastian Saavedra. These drivers along with English lass Pippa Mann are all hopeful of rides in the series this year while some are clearly more deserving than others. Recent IndyCar firings and potential separations were sharply reviewed by IRR’s under rated staff in “IndyCar’s Chopping Block: A Gory Recent History.”
Image from Indy Race Reviewer
24 Hours of Tedium at Daytona: Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan contributed to the victory in a race that truly tested our endurance. It’s more momentum for Ganassi’s team, who after a terribly slow start last season came on to win three of the last four IndyCar races. Our take on the sports car event in Daytona? It’s too long, too confusing and a poor substitute for real racing. The weekend’s highlight occurred when car made contact with an unfortunate opossum on track, making IRR’s “Operation Opossum” a qualified success.
Image from Indy Race Reviewer
Futbol!: Team Penske drivers Power, Pagenaud, Montoya and Castro Neves will attend the Super Bowl in Arizona as IndyCar’s representatives. Props to Power, who was the first to make the hackneyed Indy 500 comparison with the football finale. With a Frenchman, an Aussie, a Colombian and a Brazilian, Team Penske‘s combined football knowledge is somewhat deflated. The international contingent’s interest is geared more toward soccer than the rougher American sport, and frankly we’re disappointed the tickets aren’t going to more deserving fans.
Photo from nytimes.com