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Hopefully everyone had a safe and enjoyable Fourth of July and unlike a handful of NFL players still has all their digits intact. We wish America a belated yet very happy 239th birthday and also congratulate the U.S. women’s soccer team on their big win. With those obligatory niceties dispensed with, let’s get straight to predictions for IndyCar’s first race in July and since the epic 500 mile extravaganza in California.
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Our special prediction for the race at the Methuselah Mile involves its history as well as its future and should warm the hearts of motorsports fans everywhere, most especially in Wisconsin. The 113th IndyCar race in Milwaukee – that’s more times than they’ve raced bicycles across France – fortunately won’t be the last, despite Michael Andretti‘s latest grumblings.
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The series isn’t in a position to contract according to Hulman Co. CEO Mark Miles or lose another oval track from its increasingly road course-heavy schedule according to IRR. Combined with better attendance, an entertaining race and a fresh faced winner at the hundred and twelve year old facility, the result will be more of Milwaukee’s best in the future. IndyCar fandom in its infinite wisdom will demand it – at least we will – and a return to the ancient mile fortunately will occur.
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One of our surprise picks is for pole position – American Charlie Kimball. Charlie Kimball?!? Yep, that’s right, CK. It’ll be his first ever IndyCar pole as we figure it’s about time for Charlie to kick it into gear this season, along with the rest of his team. After all, Mid Ohio is approaching. His dairy land success will surprise many and continue a recent string of American drivers significantly upping their game. From Josef Newgarden to Graham Rahal, the U-S-A! has had much to cheer about – at least in its drivers – this year and it’s a trend we’re patriotically and proudly predicting to persist.
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First out of the race will be a perfect example of poetic justice as the racing fates will have their way with a certain problematic probate prone to pontificating named Power. “Mad” Will – who’s made it painfully clear that he’s no fan of oval racing and wishes IndyCar were simply a cheaper knock off of F1 – won’t see the checkers due to an early retirement. Happily he’ll avoid both violence against safety officials and openly blasting his own sport coming off a hefty fine at Fontana, though in the end he won’t avoid the safer barrier. It’s all right though, the Cap’n can afford it.
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The biggest surprise of the race will be the dominance of Ganassi Racing‘s four cars instead of Penske’s for a change. This will be thanks in part to their latest generation of brand new Chevy engines, changed out after the Fontana 500 miler. Another surprise will be Honda’s continued resurgence on ovals, though they’ll come up just short of another win this week. From pole winner to another surprising first-time victor, the ABC Supply Wisconsin 250 will have Team Penske, much of the rest of the field and many spectators scratching their heads all day long.
Image from Indy Race Reviewer
Our dark horse prediction to win the race is the third different American this year and the second first-time winner. It’s Chip Ganassi’s young gun Sage Karam. He’s been quick most of the year and demonstrated in SoCal that he can drive on ovals with an impressive fifth place finish after running up front most of the day. It’ll be a Ganassi sort of show in Badger country. Coming so soon after the Fourth of July, the youthful Pennsylvanian Karam’s victory in Milwaukee will make it a star spangled all-American IndyCar summer for fans to remember. That is, unless you’re an Ed Carpenter fan. U-S-A!
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