INDY 500 Fans - Pick Your top 5 for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Galahad

.....an appointment
Joined
May 22, 2000
That other race is this weekend too. Who are your favorites for the party at 16th and Georgetown? Will Danica Patrick be the first female rookie to win the Indy 500? My wild guess is:

1) Dario Franchitti
2) Scott Sharp
3) Danica Patrick
4) Helio Castroneves
5) Tony Kanaan
 

powellrj

DIS Veteran
Joined
Mar 2, 2003
I am so tired of hearing about Danica Patrick already! I know I am in the minority here, but I would really like to see somebody, anybody, win instead of Dancia. I have been shocked at the crowd level this year. I knew crowds were down, but I had no idea they were down that much! We last went 2 years ago and there were lots of empty seats in our area then, I wonder how many there will be this year.
 

Galahad

.....an appointment
Joined
May 22, 2000
powellrj said:
I am so tired of hearing about Danica Patrick already! I know I am in the minority here, but I would really like to see somebody, anybody, win instead of Dancia. I have been shocked at the crowd level this year. I knew crowds were down, but I had no idea they were down that much! We last went 2 years ago and there were lots of empty seats in our area then, I wonder how many there will be this year.

I'm afraid open wheel racing needs more Danica-like stories though. With NASCAR on the rise and open wheel on the wane, I'm willing to put up with some fluff to salvage Indy car racing and even have a chance at building the 500 back to where it belongs. Tony George has a lot to fix. Unfortunately I think the Danica story line will help him do that. At least she's a good driver.
 

Galahad

.....an appointment
Joined
May 22, 2000
This is from a Q & A column in the Indy Star that discusses the problem:

Question: There is always a lot of hand wringing about what's wrong with the IRL. Many reasons have been given. Too many foreign drivers? Emmo and Arie didn't cause people to stop watching back in their day. The split? At first sure. But let's face it, there is no split to speak of. Anyone who was anyone in CART is now racing at Indy. Ganassi, Penske, Andretti Green, Rahal, Newman Haas are all at the 500.

Are people really staying away because HVM Racing isn't at Indy? Loss of the turbo? Sure, purists miss the sweet sound of the turbo, but the casual fan still thinks Carb day is for tuning carburetors.

The problem is simple. The IRL lacks big names and interesting characters. Foyt, Mario, Big Al, Bobby Unser, Mears and Rutherford retired and there were no big names to replace them.

A.J. was a character. Bobby Unser was a character. They were straight talking lightning rods for great quotes and great theatre. They loved to mix it up in the press with Mario, who would shoot back with quotes of his own.

There is no personality any more. There are no household names because no one is interesting enough to follow. Helio has a personality and Patrick has piqued people's interest, but other than those two does anyone excite the media or fans? What do you think? (Tom from Blaine, Minn.)

Answer: I couldn't agree more. Give open-wheel racing a few more personalities like Danica Patrick and there could be some improvement.

I'm not a huge race fan, but I love my city and I'd really like one of it's signature events to be revived.
 

Deb in IA

Knows that KIDS are better
Joined
Aug 18, 1999
I'm not a big race fan either, but being a native Hoosier, I also get a bit melancholy when I think about the "glory days" of Indy 500 racing, when names like Unser, Foyt, Mears, and Andretti ruled the track.

Our family actually has a history with the Indy 500 and the Hulman-George family, who owns the racetrack. My DH's grandfather, a native of Terre Haute, used to work for Tony Hulman, and collected many of the vintage race cars that are now on display at the Indy 500 Museum.

I think the beginning of the decline was the split between the CART league and the IRL, which couldn't have come at a worse time, as it coincided with the phenomenal rise of NASCAR. Now that Tony George is also a car owner, perhaps he'll be more responsive to the drivers and other owners and build the Indy 500 back up to it's previous prestige. And having some "celebrities" like Danica Patrick, David Letterman, and Dario Franchitti (married to movie star Ashley Judd) can't hurt.

Oh, and in answer to your question, Galahad, I like Kenny Brack, Tony Kanaan, and Dario Franchitti.
 

Big Dude

<font color=red>Tagless in New Jersey<font color=g
Joined
Sep 5, 2000
I'll go with:

1) #6 Hornish

2) #3 Castroneves

3) #17 Meira

4) #11 Kanaan

5) #8 Sharp

Even though I'm a NASCAR fan, I'll always have a love of the open wheelers. I live in Andretti country and even have a Michael Andretti Motor Sports store at the end of my street. I can't wait to go to Watkins Glen this September. I have a trackside camping spot at the exit of the boot so the cars will be coming right at us before making a sharp left onto the backstretch. Should get some great pictures that weekend.

Sentimental favorite is the #24 driven by Roger Yasukawa. Robbie Buhl owns this car and it sponsors "Racing for Kids". My company used to sponsor this car until we had a merger last year. I still know some of the team members and will be sure to hook up with them at Watkins Glen.


Adam aka Big Dude
 

Galahad

.....an appointment
Joined
May 22, 2000
Deb in IA said:
Oh, and in answer to your question, Galahad, I like Kenny Brack, Tony Kanaan, and Dario Franchitti.

Yeah! Kenny Brack winning would be a great one too. Hurt last year. Filling in for the injured defending champion at the last minute.

It doesn't help that ABC/ESPN are doing such a poor job of promoting and positioning the event. It seems it would be in their best interest but the 500 is getting more publicity from David Letterman on CBS than from the network that has carried it for 40 years.

You'd be amazed at how much "industry" and how many jobs in Indy are in the "Racing Industry". The success of IRL and even NASCAR have a direct effect on the economy here.
 

Magix

<font color=navy>Blackhearted Pirate<br><font colo
Joined
Jun 24, 2003
Galahad said:
I'm afraid open wheel racing needs more Danica-like stories though. With NASCAR on the rise and open wheel on the wane, I'm willing to put up with some fluff to salvage Indy car racing and even have a chance at building the 500 back to where it belongs. Tony George has a lot to fix. Unfortunately I think the Danica story line will help him do that. At least she's a good driver.

Tony George isn't going to fix anything. He's permanently lost his chance to take over the Long Beach Grand Prix, he's about to lose Toyota (which means he'll also be losing Honda, because they don't like to hang around without Toyota to compete with), his crowds are dwindling (well, he never actually had crowds)...

TG has now publicly said it might be time to discuss re-unification with Champ Car. You know what I have to say to that? :rotfl2: Read 'em and weep IRL... Champ Car's on the rise!

Check out Katherine Legge in the Atlantics series, if you want someone better than Danica. She won her first race in Atlantics (Danica never won a race in Atlantics) and she's the real deal. Danica will crash out of Indy... just wait for it.

Don't bother watching the Indy 500. It's not the race it once was (heck, they can barely get enough cars to fill the field) and you have TG to blame for it.
 

Geoff_M

DIS Veteran, DVC Member, "Cum Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
Joined
Sep 13, 2000
1) Kanaan
2) Castroneves
3) Meira
4) Hornish
5) Franchitti

I like Danica Patrick, but she's a rookie and has never run a race of this magnitude. In a way I feel a bit sorry for her, the media pressure on her has to be incredible. I think she's the "real deal", but she still needs a little more "seasoning" in race conditions.

If you see a guy running around the pits with a Tasman/LCI/Andre Ribero firesuit on, that's me.
 









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