Our problem – one of about 500 of them – is that after nearly a month off our powers of prognostication are really rusty. It’s a good thing our picks have been weaker than an IndyCar penalty all year or else it could’ve been a real problem. Perhaps a month off’s exactly what was needed and everyone can just get back to racing at Pocono problem-free. Yeah, right – at this point IndyCar’s about as problem-free as the drug-addled punk rockers the Sex Pistols.
Photo from poconoraceway.com
In honor of “NASCAR‘s Tricky Triangle,” we’ve a series of special predictions, though they’re probably problematic for fans of the artistry on wheels that is IndyCar – you’ve been warned. Tragically it’ll most likely be the series’ last trip to Pocono, like Fontana, at least for a while. Sigh. Befitting the mood of the occasion, in their first on track meeting since Iowa Sage “Wildman” Karam and Ed “The Finger” Carpenter won’t tangle with each other again or even make unkind gestures. It’d be just too juicy and beneficial for a series that has so many problems it doesn’t seem worthy of a good break.
Photo from usatoday.com
Despite his prowess in 500 milers, Team Penske championship leader Juan “You Know” Montoya will encounter problems during the course of the marathon race and fail to repeat at Pocono. This’ll present Graham Rahal and other title contenders with a golden opportunity at Long Pond before heading into the season finale. Looks like it’s not the Cap’n’s year, as even Penske isn’t immune to Pocono’s plentiful problems.
Photo from usatoday.com
Another problem for Pocono and other IndyCar ovals is atrocious attendance. Unfortunately it’ll be a predictably sparse looking crowd, the question being whether it’ll even reach twenty thousand. We certainly hope so but remain dubious, as the loss of Pocono from the schedule would be a huge problem – another one of our 500.
Photo from motorsport.com
Overcoming his and his team’s problems to take the pole this weekend will be Marco Andretti. The Autosport qualifies well at Pocono and has been solid on the ovals as of late. Our pick for first out of the 500 miler will be the aforementioned Sage Karam as he’s about due for a problem . Remember his early season demolition phase and probation, back when race control gave a damn? But if Karam manages to keep it together, then first out will be the problematic Foyt driver Takuma Sato with his infamous affliction the “500 mile brain fade,” followed soon thereafter by his English teammate – sorry Jack “Johnny Rotten” Hawksworth – and then the Coyne clunkers.
Photo from indystar.com
The biggest surprise of the race will be Ryan Briscoe who’s still filling in for the unlucky Hinch. In a good day for Hondas, Briscoe’s SPM machine will be golden on the tri-oval and do well, provided he can keep it upright and off the infield grass this race. Our pick for winner is the problem-less one, Graham Rahal. With the victory – his third of the year – he’ll assume the championship lead going to Sonoma. Just imagine, son of ‘stache as IndyCar champ. We only hope that unlike Mid-Ohio his fabulous fiancee’s on hand to see this one, or else there could be problems.
Photo from foxsports.com