It’s seems like forever since the last race of the 2014 IndyCar Series season but it’s only been about two months. With four months still to go before the start of the 2015 season, the picture is starting to clear but there are still plenty of pieces needing to fall during this edition of silly season. However, two of the biggest pieces are in place for 2015 onward.
It was a little bit wet but it was a lotta bit wild on the streets of Exhibition Place for the annual Toronto Indy. This year’s doubleheader was compressed to a one day show with two points races after a Saturday afternoon rainout. It was a long day for the drivers and teams but a hell of a show for the fans who saw a spectacular performance in the morning and a shootout to the end in the afternoon as Sebastian Bourdais and Mike Conway scored the wins in Canada.
In the continuing struggle to reinvent the month of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, IndyCar decided that the month should open by turning right instead of left. While we can argue all day as to whether IndyCar should have a road course race at the Speedway, if they can put on an exciting event, it’ll quickly become a new May tradition.
This weekend marked the first step in reinvigorating the month of May as the stars of the IndyCar Series drove clockwise around the Speedway. The three-wide flying start was replaced with a two-wide standing start. And the checkered flag was taken by a Frenchman for only the second time in IMS history as Simon Pagenaud took the checkered flag for his first win of 2014.
In each of the last four seasons, the last thing you wanted to do was lead the IndyCar championship heading into the final race of the season. In each of the last four seasons, the points leader at the start of the final race is not the points leader at the end of that race. It took the last man to hold his lead through the final race to break that streak as Scott Dixon won the championship after an exciting and tense race.
It’s not been a good run for Canadian mayors lately. The Mayor of Toronto, Rob Ford, is in the middle of a scandal over an alleged video of him smoking crack. Corruption has resulted in a revolving door in the mayor’s offices of Montreal and its suburbs. However, in the lovely city of Hinchtown, all is well this weekend after the mayor, James Hinchcliffe, won his third IndyCar race of the season and first on an oval after dominating the Iowa 250.
It used to be that we didn’t expect much passing from a street race but that’s changed since the introduction of the DW12. That was never more evident than yesterday in Sao Paulo when an absolutely epic IndyCar race ended with a pass for the win on the final turn of the last lap to give the Mayor of Hinchtown, James Hinchcliffe, his second win of the season.
Hey look! We’ve added IndyCar coverage this year on the blog. Regular readers know that I’m a passionate fan of American open-wheel racing. I watched CART long before I ever watched Formula One or NASCAR so I think it’s about time that I brought some IndyCar posts to the blog. It’s a bit of a work in progress but for now, our IndyCar coverage will be similar to the race and news recaps we do for F1.
And what a week it was for us to start writing regularly about IndyCar. We saw Will Power dominate the weekend only to get literally run over during the race. Two drivers made us go “Danica who?” during the race. One was Simona de Silvestro who ran in the top five for all but the final lap. The other was the man who scored Go Daddy’s first IndyCar win as the Mayor of Hinchtown, James Hinchcliffe, scored his maiden IndyCar victory.
Now that the Formula One season is over, it’s time for us to look ahead to the future of motorsport. In Canada, we have an amazing motorsport history. Formula One’s best and most exciting driver, Gilles Villeneuve, hailed from Quebec. His son, Jacques, won the Indy 500 and IndyCar championship before becoming the Formula One World Drivers’ Champion. The most exciting F1 is consistently the Canadian Grand Prix at Montreal. West Hill’s Paul Tracy is one of the winningest drivers in Champ Car (formerly CART) history.
But who is left for Canada to cheer for now. No one is at the top echelon of the sport right. But that isn’t to say we don’t have some potential racing heroes waiting in the wings. So here’s a look at the future of Canadian motorsports. Continue reading
Sunday marked the second of two trips that the IndyCar Series takes to Canada. After the Toronto Indy, the stars of IndyCar had their second of back-to-back Canadian races in Edmonton on the temporary circuit at the Edmonton City Centre Airport. Twenty-five cars and their drivers took to the track on one of the series’ fastest road courses and the year’s only race on an airport circuit. Continue reading
The top level of open-wheel racing in North America went to Toronto for the 26th time this weekend. This weekend was a complete change from the previous IndyCar races around Exhibition Place in Toronto. The car was new, the engines were new and the crew in race control were new. Twenty-five cars raced around the streets of Toronto for the first of two Canadian stops on the IndyCar calendar led by Canadian drivers James Hinchcliffe and Alex Tagliani. Continue reading