The RACER Mailbag, Could 11

Welcome to the RACER Mailbag. Questions for any of RACER’s writers could be despatched to [email protected]. As a result of excessive quantity of questions acquired, we are able to’t assure that each letter will likely be revealed, however we’ll reply as many as we are able to. Printed questions could also be edited for size and readability. Questions acquired after 3pm ET every Monday will seem the next week.

Q: To gear up for the five hundred, I watched a DVD this week from Uncommon Sportsfilms in regards to the 1972 race. One section featured Harlan Fengler using across the Speedway in a road automobile exhibiting off IMS’s brand-new warning gentle system, which featured lights and numbers to maintain the race vehicles going at a continuing tempo of 80 or 90 mph whereas below warning. At first thought, this looks like a reasonably good system in comparison with the pack-up we see in the present day, which leads to what appears to be some unnecessarily lengthy yellows. Why was the warning gentle system deserted? Are opponents pleased with the system we’ve in the present day? I suppose there’s added pleasure upon the restarts, however on the floor the follow of conserving vehicles at a continuing tempo below yellow appears to be a extra pure strategy. What instigated the pack-up technique? What’s your desire?

Mark Founds, Mason, OH

MARSHALL PRUETT: Nicely, there was that complete lawsuit by Roger Penske with the PACER lights system that took months to reconcile the winner of the Indy 500, then took Mario’s second win away and awarded it to Uncle Bobby that solutions the primary half. (Moderately than rehash the entire thing within the Mailbag, my pal Dave Scoggan did a pleasant piece on it here).

I haven’t heard the present crop of drivers complain about Indy 500 restarts since former collection president Randy Bernard had them going double-file. Except we’re speaking a few restart with one lap to go, we are inclined to see the motive force in second or third catch the chief and a little bit of back-and-forth happen. I’m fantastic with single-file.

Q: Do you suppose McLaren is having second ideas about Herta, contemplating he’s made so many driver errors this 12 months? In the meantime, O’Ward is shining.

What’s the issue with Daly? It was at all times thought he simply wanted a full season with one group to place all of it collectively. I seen whereas VeeKay grew to become your No.1 free agent in your foolish season replace, you didn’t even point out Conor. Is he within the combine for a seat subsequent 12 months?

Tim B.

MP: It does appear to be a case the place Colton hasn’t been the identical 1000-percent locked-in-and-focused man we’ve seen the final two seasons. Regardless of doing our end-of-day movies, I haven’t had the time to do a deep dive with him on the topic, so extra to comply with there.

I did, nonetheless, join with Conor after Barber and he was amazingly sincere in his evaluation of why the 12 months has not gone the best way he’d hoped. Search for that story this week. He signed a multi-year deal, so he’s good past 2022.

Q: I’ve by no means as soon as watched a sporting occasion primarily based on who the announcers have been. And by no means didn’t watch one for a similar cause. And I’m prepared to wager that’s true of everybody watching. I’m an enormous fan of Jr. And all of us agree Danica is a polarizing determine. I don’t know if I perceive why NBC feels the necessity to jazz up the set checklist of the five hundred. Is somebody on the highest ground of Rockefeller Heart considering extra folks will tune in to the most-watched motor race primarily based on the speaking heads?


MP: I’ll watch an NBA recreation simply because Kevin Harlan is doing the play-by-play, however I hear what you’re saying. It’s our greatest race, so whereas I agree that it appears extremely unlikely the occasion will see a noticeable rankings increase by having Dale Jr and Danica again, I perceive why NBC needs so as to add items of aptitude to the published.

Q: I used to be watching one of many F1 pre-race reveals they usually have been speaking a few gap on the nostril of the automobile that directs the airflow from entrance to the drivers cockpit space. I’m questioning if IndyCars are doing the identical factor, as it’d presumably present some reduction as a result of aeroscreen?

Shyam Cherupalla

MP: Racing in excessive ambient temperatures with radiators positioned on either side of the cockpit that run at 200F or extra will at all times make for a toasty cockpit expertise, with or with out an aeroscreen. IndyCar has used ‘nostrils’ within the DW12’s nostril since 2020.

Q: I learn your newest foolish season article. I believe it’s best to included two present F1 drivers: Nicholas Latifi and Lance Stroll. There are reviews that Latifi will likely be dropped by Williams at some stage in the center of the season. With the backing he has, I might see him getting a greater experience in IndyCar. Then there’s Lance Stroll and his father Lawrence – there are reviews that he’ll put Aston Martin up on the market and promote it to Audi.

If that occurs and Lance Stroll is dropped from the group, dare I say that Lawrence Stroll might assist Lance by shopping for an present IndyCar group like Dreyer and Reinbold and perhaps carry Aston Martin because the third engine in IndyCar? By the best way, IndyCar and IMSA ought to add a race on the new Miami Autodrome.

Alistair, Branson, MO

MP: IndyCar might positively use extra Canadians. I’d moderately see Alberta’s Parker Thompson get the nod than Latifi or Stroll, however the child doesn’t have household cash to propel him into the collection. Perhaps younger USF2000 race winner and Quebecois Thomas Nepveu will get there first.

Q: What’s the attraction to DRS? You may’t get the automobile to go quicker by uncooked energy so that you do it by decreasing drag? Is 200mph all an F1 automobile can do? Within the pre-race, Danica stated these are the quickest vehicles. I’m confused. The breathless commentator stated DRS gave an extra 12mph. What number of HP of push-to-pass does that take within the present IndyCar?

I get these vehicles are overwhelmed with aero and all that downforce means drag. However actually people, both get a few of that drag off and take a look at the drivers capacity to maintain the automobile below them, or get some extra horses.
There have been a few incidents. Each appeared to me to be the fault of the trailing automobile. Now, these guys have tremendous licences – you understand, those that IndyCar drivers don’t ever appear to have the ability to earn – they usually don’t know they’re subsequent to a different automobile in the midst of a lowering radius flip? Actually?

I watched the race as a result of I used to be curious. On the finish, what I felt was upset and anxious for IndyCar to get again to racing.

John Maggitti PhD

MP: Nicely, F1 had this factor the place passing was sighted about as typically as Bigfoot, so DRS was the reply to F1’s passing downside. They’re doing 200-plus in a straight line, which impresses me; thought I noticed 208mph on one on-board final weekend.


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