Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Indycar Toronto notes.

Packed grandstands

Two weekends ago, the indycar race in Toronto was one mightily entertaining affaire. One thing we noticed that the TV commentators did not seem to comment on was that the grandstands were full. It's either there were not that many grandstands and spectators had to pack into the stands availablr, or Indycar just has a fabulous Canadian following. In either case it would be wise to have a second race. Perhaps revive Edmonton, or even at CTMP (formerly Mosport).

James Hinchcliffe finishing on the podium was a plus for the series. He is just as competitive as anyone in the top teams. If Bernie Ecclestone ran Indycar he would pressure Chip Ganassi to drop Tony Kanaan and pickup The Mayor of Hinchtown. It's a win-win on all fronts: for fans, Chip Ganassi, Indycar, and it keeps Canadian fans loyal to the series.

Free Kanaan!

Despite his desire to keep racing, Tony Kanaan no longer has the burning desire to launch a sustained attack on the Indycar championship. He should be let go.

It's really not fun advocating for someone to be let go from their job. Given that i had a similar tidbit about Helio Castroneves, and now Kanaan, some might believe i'm just out to badmouth the series. Yet the reality is that there are younger drivers coming up the ranks who can be as good or better, but who simply need a chance.

The argument that drivers such as Helio and Kanaan are very popular with fans, and loosing them could decimate the fan base does not hold water. Rather Indycar is struggling for fans, so letting the younger generation into the series will bring novelty and boost attendance and viewership.

Carlos and Connor

What seemed like very promising careers last year has not delivered this year. In 2016 Carlos Munoz finished second in the Indy 500 behind teammate Alexander Rossi (if it had not been for a late call to pit...), and was the highest placed Andretti Autosport driver in the final driver standings. Connor Daly in his rookie season last year, dazzled with his passing and his ability to make opportunistic strategies work.

Now here they are at A.J Foyt Racing this year. No sponsorship to bring to the team, only their "A" game. But so far neither Munoz or Daly have been able to bring their "A" level game according to the team, and perhaps onlookers. This has got A.J Foyt frustrated. 

But from my observations over the years, i can say that unless you're bringing sponsorship to help the team along like Takuma Sato did, your season is doomed to mediocrity..maybe even your career. I did have hope to see either Munoz or daly score at least a couple top 5 results by now, yet sincerely these results are not their faults. An Indycar Connoisseur knows what the drivers are capable of. It's the team that's letting them down. The team should instead focus all resources on their engineering talent, strategy making and pitwork, similar to what Dale Coyne did in the last off season. The team's biggest assets now are these 2 drivers.