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All-purpose open-wheel (F1, IRL) racing thread

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by crimsonace, Feb 19, 2007.

  1. Mwilliams685

    Mwilliams685 Active Member

    I get what you're saying about Mario, but there's just something special about that man. I don't know if I can fault anybody for him still being more popular than any current driver.
  2. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Oh, for sure. Great fellow. He also represents an era where cars were beloved, speed was revered and racers were heroes that frequently died in pursuit of their passion. It’s just different now. Newgarden could win the next 10 Indy 500s and wouldn’t be written into as many popular songs as Mario Andretti.
  3. franticscribe

    franticscribe Well-Known Member

    For what it's worth, Colton and Connor both started becoming pretty popular baby names in the early 2000s and have just become more popular. I expect we'll see a fair number of American athletes - and other celebrities - with those names come along as those kids come of age.

    My wife is intrigued with the international contingent of IndyCar drivers, which makes sense given that we live in, and she was reared in, NASCAR country. But she's not really into racing enough to follow it, just enough to tolerate the small number of races I watch every year and occasionally going with me to the 500.

    During the race this year we played a little game of me telling her a driver's name and her guessing where they are from.

    Anyway, the sport needs Rossi and Newgarden to succeed - more than Rossi winning a 500 or Newgarden winning the series. I think both have the personalities that they connect with people on a larger scale. And as always, the series needs to do a better job of promoting its champions.

    Ferucci impressed me a lot on Sunday. I hope that wasn't just a flash in the pan, or that he doesn't end up in that trap so many other talented young drivers have: not being able to bring enough sponsorship money to the table to hold on to a decent ride.
    maumann likes this.
  4. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I wonder if Danica wants to do more TV, for IndyCar's sake I hope so. Bell and Tracy are solid as analysts and I'm not saying break them up, but she's a credible voice (much more for IndyCar than Nascar) and polarizing, which is a great combination. Maybe Dale Jr. keeps coming back to Indy just to boost NBC's star power but it's hard to see how much more he can add.
    bigpern23 likes this.
  5. Jake from State Farm

    Jake from State Farm Well-Known Member

    Plus she's hot, which can't be avoided if you're talking TV
  6. franticscribe

    franticscribe Well-Known Member

    I guess I am in the minority, but I didn't find Danica helpful at all. I was a big fan of her as a driver and think she's a great ambassador for the sport. If NBC is going to keep her on, I hope somebody is coaching her on getting better and that she's open to it.

    I think Dale could be great on IndyCar if he puts in the work to understand it better. He seems like a natural on t.v.
  7. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Had to share this from a Robin Miller notes column at Racer.com:

    A former NASCAR official accused IndyCar of “manufacturing” the outcome at Indy because it used the red flag after the Lap 178 crash. That’s almost too funny to comprehend.
  8. LanceyHoward

    LanceyHoward Well-Known Member

    How come most of the best Indy Car drivers are not Americans. I am not trying to be xenophobic, just curious.
  9. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

    Of the top 10 drivers in points through Detroit, four of them, Newgarden, Rossi, Hunter-Reay and Rahal are American while a fifth, Hinchcliffe, is Canadian. Doesn't seem like a bad ratio to me.
    franticscribe and 2muchcoffeeman like this.
  10. PCLoadLetter

    PCLoadLetter Well-Known Member

    A big part of it is that the ladder to get up to a high level in open wheel racing is almost exclusively in Europe. The American drivers who are in IndyCar largely got there by going to Europe as teens.
  11. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Jeff Gordon, being from Pittsboro, Indiana, wanted to be an IndyCar driver but didn't have the money, and he has said that when he went south to Nascar, doors opened for him that weren't opening in open-wheel. Tony Stewart was in IndyCar for a while and won a title but Joe Gibbs signed him for better money to go to Nascar. They helped lift Nascar into the stratosphere while IndyCar was floundering, so any talented young American driver was crazy not to chase stock cars over a period of about 10-15 years. Plus you had guys like Sam Hornish who felt like they had to give it a shot after accomplishing enough in IndyCar -- and Hornish made a helluva lot more money finishing 25th in Nascar than winning in IndyCar. Money, money, money. The gap has closed between Nascar and IndyCar but that's more with the former fading than the latter growing. Still gotta have money to get into IndyCar and there's just not as many seats.
  12. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

    The number of open-wheel drivers produced in Canada has cratered after Player's pulled out.
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