The third-rate though conveniently located sports car course makes for some dreadfully boring IndyCar racing and regrettably will do so again for the thirty fourth time next Sunday. Quite possibly the worst circuit the series visits, Mid-Ohio epitomizes a disturbing trend in modern society of willing, almost glad acceptance of the middling. It’s mediocrity on parade.
During the run of the mill track’s big league history, which began fitfully in 1980, both CART and later Champ Car had the good sense to drop it entirely – for years at a time. Yet since 2007 and to our continual chagrin, Mid-Ohio keeps reappearing year after year on IC’s wreck of a schedule, like a meddling, nosy neighbor knocking on your door.
Photo from foxnews.com
It’s not expecting too much if, as a race fan, one expects more from Mark Miles and crew than merely mundane Mid-Ohio. Meanwhile, perfectly decent oval tracks all across the country – and as nearby as northern Kentucky and Illinois – sit idle.
The past five races there have featured as many different winners including Josef Newgarden last year, his teammate Simon Pagenaud the previous season, Graham Rahal, Scott Dixon and then teammate Charlie Kimball for his lone series victory before that. The stat’s somewhat misleading though, as since 2007 Dixon’s won five times and Ganassi’s cars a total of seven. Penske owns three wins in the same era and, significantly, the last two. So add dominance by the super teams to terrible, single file racing on offer at the sports car course. We say, what malarkey!
Photo from motorauthority.com
Officials actually added five laps to the already too many miles of mediocrity for some absurd reason in 2013, making an unwatchable race even more interminable. Contests at the dilapidated facility have been averaging about a caution to a caution period and a half lately, unfortunately not nearly enough to occasionally liven things up, à la Toronto. The last four races in a row all have been less than entertaining, lopsided blowouts – and that’s just since we’ve been covering the damned thing.
So when Sunday rolls around and it’s a beautiful, sunny summer day outside we suggest you go out and enjoy it. Don’t settle for another parade of mediocrity at Mid-Ohio and maybe – just maybe – we can make a positive change to IndyCar’s schedule by getting them to ax it for a third and final time. As always, IRR will have full coverage with our race review immediately following, including insights unlike anywhere else – with nothing mediocre about it.