Mid-Ohio Preview: Middling At Best

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It’s time again for IndyCar’s annual trek to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, the second rate road circuit known for middling racing, surface street speeds and paint-drying-level excitement. Consistently, we say meh to Mid-Ohio.

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Testing at the mediocre track last week yielded one positive development, at least. Actual open wheel IndyCars – or the closest we’ve come in five years – made a limited return. J.R. “wall banger” Hildebrand and the aged Tony “Curly” Kanaan tested their cars sans ass-pods, those unsightly rear bumpers introduced after Dan Wheldon’s tragic death at Las Vegas in 2011. Let’s hope the incompetents running the show at 16th and Georgetown show some common sense for once and get rid of ’em  – permanently.

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There isn’t much else to say about the racing at Mid-Ohio that we haven’t said previously. The track’s inferior, the racing’s sub-par and IndyCar’s artistry on wheels is utterly wasted there. Continue reading

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NASCAR Visits Vegas: Vegetative Tedium

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The racing again on Sunday was better off without Busch and we fervently hope it remains that way. Frankly we didn’t watch the Las Vegas race except for the last forty or so laps and happily it doesn’t appear as though we missed much. NASCAR‘s version of race killing turbulence called  “aero push” made another appearance at Las Vegas Motor Speedway making passing difficult and watching the race even more so. It’s a real shame IndyCar no longer races at LVMS after the aborted 2011 finale that tragically claimed Dan Wheldon’s life. Unlike NASCAR, which by the way enjoyed a huge crowd Sunday, open wheel cars put on a hell of a show in the desert.

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A predictably tedious NASCAR race, we bet on boring and it turned out to be the smart money. There were a total of five cautions over the four hundred miles, though not in the early going as long stretches of green flag racing and “aero pushing” set the tone. Surprisingly there were no debris cautions or flags at all for that matter late in the race, which Kevin Harvick dominated. Continue reading

N@$C@R Predictions & Prognostications: Lost Vegas Edition

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Our cracked crystal ball crew takes another stab at divining NASCAR’s near future in the “Lost Vegas” Edition. Why lost? NASCAR’s visiting Sin City, the most garish place on earth and location of one of our favorite books and films, “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.” If you’re familiar with the story then you know why it’s lost Vegas. If you’re not, then rush out for the Terry Gilliam directed classic starring Johnny Depp now.

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The irrepressible Hunter S. Thompson – a true inspiration as the original Gonzo journalist – “covers” a chaotic motorbike race in the desert while destroying hotel rooms and partying on and off the Strip. And all NASCAR has to offer is Darrell Waltrip bleating on about two ton, sub-200 mph glorified safety cages on Fox.

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IRR’s divining division looks a lot like the hotel room in “Fear and Loathing,” with their recent NASCAR predictions in somewhat of a shambles. So with the assistance of a beery, dusty, hazy Vegas stupor – and before hotel management shows up at the door – here goes our latest roll of the dice. Mind you when it comes to many of the following prognostications, we wouldn’t bet on it.

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Kurt Busch will still be watching the weekend’s festivities from his Walter White style meth cooking RV, only this weekend his undisclosed location will be much nearer the actual racing. Look out, ladies of Las Vegas.  Continue reading