Photo from mysanantonio.com
With one Frenchman winning the 500 and another notorious for chewing up and spitting out the competition on the streets of Belle Isle, prepare yourselves for what may well feel like a weekend long foodie’s junket to France. Only with better options on television and the web.
Detroit was originally a French town. Judging by the area’s blight, it’s also a prime candidate to give back to them. Or Quebec. The track itself has been improved in recent years, but Belle Isle’s still a definite dump. Adding insult to injury for fans, an outstanding large oval track lies just to the southwest of Detroit called Michigan International Speedway. Tragically, it’s going unused again this season – at least by IndyCar.
Photo from michigan.org
Fear not, for it’s not all overpriced wine, hairy pits and stinky cheese. Scott Dixon (as we predicted) and Ryan Hunter-Reay each won last year, after the pace car wrecked! Ragin’ Graham Rahal remarkably swept both races in 2017 in a truly inspiring display of racing prowess. The year before, Power won the sleep inducing Sunday race, but the Saturday show was livelier – and all French.
Pags led much of the race from pole prior to Bourdais winning it, just as he triumphed in the previous season’s Sunday race. Pagenaud won Detroit once, way back in 2013 for SPM. Obviously following both recent wins in Indy, the Frenchman’s hotter than a left bank tire fire.
Paradoxically, the French 500 winner’s in for a grueling week of media and travel, and as a result 500 victors often struggle in the next race. SeBass, however, has none of those distractions. Like the rest of the field who failed to win the 500 – including the list of recent Detroit winners above – he’s hungrier than ever.
Photo from France