Thoughts on Sonoma
So everybody Sonoma, the brown place. Where Firestone brought the Barber-spec tire to save some money, it didn’t seem to work to well. Racer had some reports that the black tires fell off the cliff after 5 or so laps. The red tires were more durable, because they had more grip, hmmm?
-So NBCSN had the “regular crew” of Leigh Diffey, Townsend Bell, and Wally Somebody. Robin Miller was somewhere in the pits. I’ve never actually heard these guys since I haven’t had sound in the sports bar I watch races in, when this crew has been together. Wally was terrible, Robin Miller was worse, who signs off on that grid walk thing? NBC if you’re going to employ fat, white men with facial hair I’ve got two names for you Steve Matchett and Marshall Pruett. Do it, Do It NOW!
-This was a Steve Matchett kind of race, he should have been there.
-JR Hildebrandt did the preview lap thing, sponsored by Go Pro. Pretty good stuff. I’ve heard the Cyclops Gear is working on installing one of their cameras in Pippa Mann’s helmet for Fontana and having it meet safety regs. That would be excellent. #Heckyeah
-Epic number of yellows (7), I think this race had more than every other race. Indycar record for Sonoma, in the first 30 laps there were five yellows, one every six laps or so. However, this did produce a ton of movement in the field. TK, master of restarts, shot up to p7 at one point. KVRT teammate Simona de Silvestro ended the day one of the big movers, up 13 spots. Must be taking lessons.
-Briscoe and RHR were other bigger movers. Briscoe drove like he needs a paycheck, which he might, baby on the way and all that.
-James Hinchcliffe, earned a paycheck, improved 1 spot, finished in the top 10, finished running, dirt tracked a bit, and pulled of stunt that a combination of Tony Hawk, Tanner Foust, and Chuck Norris couldn’t have dreamt up. He did a grind in a DW12. Mind you, he didn’t start it, but he finished it in one piece. Move of the Race, right there.
-Sebastian Saavedra…who lets him drive anymore? The crew said he had a penalty when he crashed out, but I’m pretty sure he had two. Anybody know for sure…actually just checked the box score, he had uno, Viso had dos.
-Speaking of DNFs, there were five, 80% of those were mechanical, 100% of those were Honda machines, 50% of those were SFHR cars. How much of that was due to engine issues? Unknown, but it doesn’t look good, especially for SFHR.
-So, that call when Dixie hit Power’s tire, the one that wasn’t attached to his car. Yeah, we’ve already discussed this…BUT, Pressdog wrote it up, go read that and watch both videos. http://pressdog.typepad.com/dogblog/2013/08/uncle-pressdogs-fireside-chat-bristol-and-sonoma-edition.html
Also look at this photo. http://www.indycals.net/images/misc/willspitbox.jpg
My take, the penalty was correct and the right call. But the entire Penske racing organization should be lined up and shouted at for a general lack of situational awareness in the pits. The other teams should all be nearby as well. Would I put it beyond any team to attempt to make life difficult for any other team in a race that tight, no. But only chemically impaired people go, “Yeah, run into me with that motor vehicle.” But, Power’s Outside Rear Tire Guy should have been paying a tad more attention than that.
-And they shouldn’t fine Dixon for saying dick. That’s just dumb.