When pondering the eternal question of what to do with one’s life, the answer probably isn’t spending two hours of your Saturday watching ABC’s coverage of IndyCars racing ‘round IMS’ infield at interstate speeds. Happily, and thanks to our wildly successful prognostications, now you won’t have to. Our sensible suggestion: have a toga party, instead!
IRR’s special prediction for this so-called race, which we made our thoughts relatively clear on with “Preview: F-ing F-1’s F-ing F-up,” is tedium times ten. Put another way the grand prix is, as Neidermeyer so memorably said, “worthless and weak!” Since its inception in 2014 when Pags finished first for Schmidt Peterson, Team Penske’s won every GP, usually going away. Both Pags and Power now have triumphed twice, making the event interesting only if you’re a Cap’n’s sycophant type of fan. In which case, of course, you too are worthless and weak.
Our pick for pole is obviously Penske, for in addition to the above appalling stat – merely the latest in a long line of ‘em – the team’s swept the last three. The only exception came during that laughable inaugural Indy GP, featuring SeSaav’s infamous standing start stall on pole for the now defunct KV Racing. Pags won from P4 in that embarrassment, but since then Power’s won from pole twice including last year, while Pags again triumphed from P1 in 2016 for Penske. Sounds like a compelling afternoon of racing, doesn’t it?
In a truly lesser of two evils choice – and until other teams get their asses in gear – we’ve got to go with the Frenchman. Power has sucked worse than ever lately and there’s no sign of that changing anytime soon. Upon reflection, perhaps we too are becoming worthless and weak – just not in the predictions department!
Photo from indycar.com
First out of what we call the ‘Penske pre-500 parade’ has already happened with Pietro Fittipaldi’s nasty crash at Spa. It’s too bad, as the Coyne jockey was definitely on our short list. But seriously, we wish Emo’s pizza-faced grandson a full recovery. In a prediction that surely won’t make our Canadian reader happy – eh? – Bobby Wickens will encounter further bad luck. It’s been a tough season for the Canuck rook, despite his early near success. Expect this stinging disappointment to linger, much like a stern Dean Wormer lecture on being “fat, drunk and stupid.”
For biggest surprise of the race, apart from being reminded of just how empty the gargantuan Speedway can look, one must look toward the rear. Both Ryan Hunter-Reay and Graham Rahal have made up serious ground in the GP – as well as other, more legitimate races – after qualifying poorly. We won’t be surprised when it happens again this Saturday, with Rahal taking back the mantle of biggest gainer from RHR. Hopefully it doesn’t give him a swollen head.
Photo from twitter.com
Whoever wins the GP (which stands for “grossly pointless”) will quickly be forgotten in the hullabaloo that is the buildup to the Indy 500. If anything at all’s memorable about this recent and regrettable race, it’s the first lap pileups that have marred half of ‘em. While we don’t see that happening again (Saavedra and Aleshin are both out of the series, thankfully), we do see in our crystal ball yet another Penske induced pity party for the rest of the paddock.
It sure is a good thing no Frenchman’s won the 500 in a century, because you’re about to see one win this grade 0.0 contest at the Brickyard for a third time. And from pole again, to boot. For non-Penske fans, we’re sad to say this weekend will feel much the same as it did when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor.
Photo from indycar.com