As the Indy Car series left one street circuit (Long Beach) they arrived at another in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Arriving on the home turf of several Indy Car drivers the stakes were high but it was an American who took first blood as Ryan Hunter-Reay managed to capture the pole position. However, race day was a different story…
SPOILER ALERT BELOW!!!
Ryan hung on to the lead for as long as he could and it became that much harder when Tony Kanaan caught his second wind and hounded the 2012 champion mercilessly. The two drivers traded the lead back and fourth several times, each time Tony would take the lead the crowd roared. However, the hometown celebration was short lived when TK’s engine gave out on him. Ryan lost the lead when the younger drivers came gunning after him from the mid pack.
In the end it was James “Hinchtown” Hincliffe who pulled off a beautiful last lap move on Takuma Sato to take the win. Marco Andretti rounded out the podium with a third place finish (which also now puts him second in the points behind Sato). All the race highlights are below and trust me when I say it definitely worth your time to watch!
Did you happen to miss the Indy Car race as well as the F1 race? With no hope of watching a re-broadcast? Never fear! For I am here to help once again. WARNING: SPOILER ALERT!!
The Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersberg ended with James “Hinchtown” Hinchcliffe getting his first ever Indy Car victory. Hinchtown’s win is the first by a Canadian in Indy Car since Paul Tracy back in 2007. Coming in second behind James Hinchcliffe was Helio Castroneves and Marco Andretti, showing a strong performance landed the third podium spot. Check out the race highlight flick below for all the action.
Just after Formula Drift finished their skirmish in New Jersey, the Indy Car series was getting ready for a night time shootout in Iowa for the Iowa Corn 250. Although, things got off to a late start due to mother nature litterally raining on the parade. After about an hour or so of rainfall the skies over Iowa cleared up and the race was underway as well as the action. Before the green flag had a chance to drop, Dario Franchitti suffered a major engine failure taking him out of the race which severely hurt his shot at the title. Later on around lap 68, points leader Will Power made a mistake and clipped E.J. Viso taking them both out and opening up the points even more for the likes of James Hinchcliffe who was second place in the points due to his consistancy all year.
Marco Andretti made a run for the lead but problems with his car combined with the agressive tactics of his teammates Ryan Hunter-Reay and James Hinchcliffe kept him from making a solid run at the front. When it was all said and done Ryan Hunter-Reay stayed ahead of Marco Andretti and a hard charnging Tony Kanaan to take his second victory in a row. Ryan’s win rockets him to second place in the overall points putting him just 3 points behind Will Power. While James Hinchcliffe falls all the way to fifth in points after suffering an incident which ended his race in 17th place.
With Iowa in the books it marks the last oval race Indy Car will see until September when they return to California Speedway. With a slew of road courses ahead look for Dario Frachitti, Scott Dixon, and Helio Castroneves to put a serious dent in the points battle! In the meantime check out the video below of all the race highlights.
Barely recovered from their stop at Texas, the Indy Car grid came back to the Milwaukee mile after a brief absence for “Indy Fest”. Not sure where the new name comes from but I supposed it does not matter much. What does matter is that Milwaukee is just the same as it has always been: short, flat, fast, and unpredictable! If you walked away from the race after the first half you would swear that Dario Franchitti or Scott Dixon would take the victory. However it certainly did not play out that way! Franchitti actually had his day ended early when he had an unfortunate meeting with the wall and Scott Dixon was penalized for jumping a re-start (that decision was later ruled to be “wrong” but it wont change his finish result much). This may leave you asking who was at the front? Why none other than Ryan Hunter-Reay of Andretti Autosport. Ryan was being chased down by Tony Kannan and James Hinchcliffe respectively. While he faced some tough contention from TK he managed to hold off the Brazilian and take the win which actually brings things full circle for Ryan. Back in 2004 he scored his first win at the Milwaukee mile when he raced for Jimmy Vassar in the Champ Car series. To see all the highlights from the race scroll down for video from Indy Car.
There was a ton of racing over the Memorial Day weekend but the biggest event was easily the 96th annual Indianapolis 500 on Sunday. This year’s Indy 500 was a year of firsts. It was the first year with the new DW12 Dallara chassis on the famous oval, the first year in a long time that we had multiple engine manufacturers battling it out, and unfortunately the first Indy 500 without Dan Wheldon who won last year’s race before his tragic death. Really the entire event was a massive tribute to Mr. Wheldon and more so than the thrill of victory, the history, and the glory many of the top drivers wanted to win the event just so they could have the honor of their likeness on the Borg Warner trophy next to Dan’s. The new chassis and their freshly tested oval set up provided for tons of excitement as there were 35 total lead changes, smashing the previous record of 29. There were many who were looking like a good bet to take it all. Rookie James “Hinchtown” Hinchcliffe qualified 2nd and held the lead for a significant amount of time. Marco Andretti also looked very strong and lead more laps than most.
Although, in the end it was the familiar sight of the Target Chip Ganassi team taking control of the race. Teammates Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon took turns swapping the lead several times during the last 20 laps although they had serious contention from Tony Kanaan and Takuma Sato. It was Dario who had the lead at the end of the race and despite what can only be described as the ballsy-est oval pass attempt in history by Takuma Sato, Dario managed to hang on to the lead and earned his third Indy 500 victory (under caution). According to Indy Car Dario earned just over 2.4 million dollars for his victory as well as a place in the history books as being among the few drivers to have 3 Indy 500 victories under their belts. To see some of the best race action from the event, scroll down to check out the highlights video.
Today in San Paulo Brazil KV Racing held a press conference in which they announced that Rubens Barrichello will join Tony Kanaan and EJ Viso in a three car effort for the 2012 Indy Car season. This may not be a huge surprise since all the seats in Formula 1 are spoken for and Rubens did some testing for KV Racing Tech. on the request of his buddy Kanaan last month but this is still great news! I am that not only did Rubens finally get a ride, but I actually get to see him race! Welcome to Indy Car Rubens!
SĀO PAULO, BRAZIL – MARCH 1, 2012 — KV Racing Technology announced today that Formula One legend Rubens Barrichello and IZOD IndyCar superstar Tony Kanaan, who often refer to themselves as “brothers”, will both contest the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season for the team.
Barrichello will pilot the No. 8 BMC | Embrase – KV Racing Technology Chevrolet/Firestone machine. Kanaan will drive the #11 GEICO | MOUSER ELECTRONICS – KV Racing Technology car for 10 races, the MOUSER ELECTRONICS | GEICO KV Racing Chevrolet/Firestone entry at four and the ITAIPAVA – KV Racing Technology Chevrolet/Firestone machine at Brazil. GEICO and MOUSER ELECTRONICS will be co-primary sponsors at the Indy 500. Barrichello and Kanaan join E. J. Viso, #5 CITGO | PDVSA – KV Racing Technology Chevrolet/Firestone, in a three-car effort
for the team in 2012.
“I was at Sebring when Rubens first got into an Indy car. The smile when he got out of the car was a great moment and lasted for three days. Rubens ended up the fastest at the end of the test, showing the speed he is capable of and his experience setting up a car. Teamed with his “brother” Tony Kanaan this is going to be an exciting and successful season for the drivers, the team and the fans,” said KVRT co-owner Kevin Kalkhoven. “
Jimmy Vasser, the V in KVRT said. “We are very excited to have both Rubens (Barrichello) and Tony (Kanaan) competing for our team in 2012. Rubens is going to be a great addition and last year Tony, once again demonstrated his leadership abilities and his proven ability to compete for wins and the championship. The addition of Rubens and the return of Tony along with E.J. (Viso), gives KVRT a very strong driver line-up and one I am sure can compete for podium finishes and race wins. I would also like to thank all the sponsors for making this deal possible and KVRT General Manager Mark Johnson for his tireless work getting all the parties together.”
Barrichello, whose Formula One career spanned 19-years (1993 – 2011), is the most experienced driver in Formula One history with 322 starts out of 326 races entered. The 39-year-old native of Brazil was the runner-up in the Formula One championship in 2002 and 2004. He has earned 11 victories, 14 pole podiums, 68 podiums performances, 106 top-five finishes and172 top-10 showings. Barrichello, despite his vast racing experience, will now become a rookie in the IZOD IndyCar Series, entering his first season in U.S. based open-wheel competition and starting a new chapter in his career.
“I am thrilled, it is something very new to me,” Barrichello said. “I need to thank everyone involved, especially Tony because he has been involved for a long time. I would also like to thank my sponsors, BMC, Embrase and Locaweb for their help. This is a new experience, but I am very very happy. With all my experience I will start as a rookie, but I think I will get better as the year progresses. My main thing is to be an addition to KV Racing Technology. They have been doing very well and Tony brought the team to a different level last year, so I hope with my contribution we can build on this and take the team to another level. I am extremely happy and have a big smile on my face.”
Kanaan, the 2004 IZOD IndyCar Series Champion, will contest his 15th U. S. based open-wheel season, 11th in the IndyCar Series (ran one race, the Indy 500 in 2002) and second with KVRT. One of the most consistent and fearless drivers in the Series, Kanaan is a perennial title threat. The 37-year-old Brazilian, who finished fifth in the IZOD IndyCar Series championship in 2011, has placed in the top-six in the championship every year he has run the full IndyCar season, a total of nine consecutive seasons. Kanaan, who holds the IndyCar Series record for consecutive starts at 148, has made a total of 149 IndyCar starts (242 career) earning 14 victories (15 career), 52 podiums (58 career), 85 top-five top-five finishes (101 career) and 111 top-10 showings (160 career) with 11 poles (15 career).
“I am very excited to be returning to KV Racing Technology not only with a two year deal but also to have Rubens Barrichello as my team mate,” Kanaan said. “We have always dreamed about racing together but never imagined it would actually happen and certainly not in the near future or in IndyCars. So I am looking forward to the start of the season, I think its going to be a very exciting year.”
General Manager Mark Johnson commenting on the addition of Barrichello and Kanaan to the KVRT stable said, “Speaking for the entire KV Racing Technology organization this is truly an exciting time for all of us. The saying ‘Good Things Come to Those That Wait’ could not be truer. With Rubens addition to the team being just slightly more timely than Tony’s situation last year we are ecstatic we could get the deal put together for all of us. Just as it happened last year Kevin, Jimmy, myself and Rubens (with extensive encouragement from Tony) shook hands and said lets make this happen after the initial Sebring test. Every individual involved has given 150% effort over the last two weeks to insure we were able to push the deal over the finish line. I believe as a team we are very well positioned entering the 2012 IndyCar season.”
The 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season begins March 23-25 with the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in St. Petersburg, Florida.
Today it was confirmed on the Indy Car website that Rubens Barrichello did in fact make the trip to Sebring, Flordia on the invitation of fellow Brazillian Tony Kanaan to test out the new DW12 Indy Car chassis. It all started out as Tony reaching out to his friend to cheer him up after Rubens learned he would be replaced by Bruno Senna at Williams. However, upon arriving at the track and falling in love with the DW12 after some hot laps Rubens has entered serious talks with Jimmy Vasser (Co-Owner of KV Racing) about 2012. Here is hoping that they can work something out because I would love to see Rubens in Indy Car this year!
It has been almost a week now since the tragic loss of Indy Car driver, father, and husband Dan Wheldon in a horiffic crash at the Las Vegas Indy Car finale. Since then Graham Rahal, Tony Kanaan and other Indy Car drivers and supporters have been hard at work putting together a memorial site and an awesome list of cool items that will be up for bid in a memorial Auction for Dan Wheldon’s family. What are some of the items up for bid? Check out this list:
-Graham Rahal’s Las Vegas Helmet, gloves, and shoes
-Bobby Rahal race-worn helmet
-Race worn items from INDYCAR drivers such as Dario Franchitti, Tony Kanaan, Marco Andretti, Simona De Silvestro, Oriol Servia, James Hinchcliffe and Charlie Kimball; NASCAR drivers such as Jimmie Johnson, Juan Pablo Montoya, Jamie McMurray, Kyle Busch, Joey Logano and Max Papis; Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton, Mark Webber, Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello and NHRA stars Brandon Bernstein, Cory McLenathan, Antron Brown and Ron Capps.
-#77 Dan Wheldon jersey signed by the Indinapolis Colts
-Signed Indiana Pacers jersey from Larry Bird and Clark Kellogg
-Ritmo Mundo INDYCAR Rose Gold timepieces
-Memorabilia from Tour de France winning cyclist Lance Armstrong, MotoGP champion Nicky Hayden, NBA star Dwight Howard, tennis legend Billie Jean King, actors Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett and professional surfer Kelly Slater
-VIP package for any of the Barrett Jackson Auctions
-INDYCAR experience two-seater ride around Indianapolis Motor Speedway
-Two-seat Grand-Am prototype ride around Mid-Ohio Sportscar Course
-NFL helmet signed by Steve Young, Jerry Rice, and Deion Sanders
-NFL New York Giants Helmet signed by Eli Manning
-NFL jersey signed by Roger Staubach, Steve Young, Jerry Rice, Warren Moon, and Harry Carson.
-Limited-edition Colt handgun with serial number “98INDY500” and two custom Colt Indianapolis 500 rifles.
What a F’ing list huh?! If you are interested in any of the above listed items the official Dan Wheldon Auction begins on October 24th (Monday) and 100% of all the proceeds will go to the Dan Wheldon Family Trust Fund. If you want more info on the auction follow @DWheldonAuction on twitter for live updates.
When Andretti Autosport lost its 7/11 sponsorship at the end of last season many were left wondering if the team would be able to find more money to keep running crowd favorite Tony Kanaan for the next season. It was then shortly announced that Tony would no longer be with the team. That news made for a painful off season for any Kanaan fan, including me! Luckily today we finally got some good news when it was announced via Jimmy Vasser’s and Tony’s Twitteraccounts that TK would be driving for KV Racing Technology-Lotus for 2011. Tony tweeted a picture of his new car and is happy to get some seat time tomorrow at Homestead Raceway in preparation for the Honda GrandPrix of St. Petersberg this weekend. Congrats Tony! Glad to have you back!