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Thread: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

  1. #26
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    A few random, scattered thoughts...

    How to get rid of pack racing: I'll reset a few things already mentioned. More HP, less aero. Eliminate WOT racing and make it necessary for the drivers to actually slow for corners. One thing that's not been mentioned (that I know of) that would also help increase separation is the tires. They are too damn consistent on most surfaces. Change the compounds so there is more performance degradation over the length of the tire run. 1-2 seconds difference ought to do it. The safety aspect of the cars for rear wheel contact has been addressed by the additions to the new chassis. If testing reveals they need "tweaked" I'm sure it will be a high priority.

    Fencing: This is the thing that's been occupying my mind the most. I've seen suggestions for plexiglass/lexan covering the fence and all sorts of other suggestions. Here's the problem. Splinters. Why did we do away with trackside wooden billboards and guardrail posts? Splinters. There were drivers killed by splinters. That's why we don't use wood. Lexan sheets thick enough to keep cars out of the fence without fracturing would be ungodly heavy and would present it's own problems in suspending it in front of the fencing. Ultimately, it might get solved, but I think it would cause more problems than it's fixing. The fence must have some "give" or it's just another hard crash wall. The problem is two fold. The fence is actually supported by large steel cables. The cables are there to strengthen the fence and keep the bigger bits (engines, etc) out of the stands. Because of the weight, they must be supported by posts. A lot of posts. (Note: What look like posts on a lot of the pictures that are zoomed out are actually light poles). Here's the problem I think. The fence must have some give to aid in energy absorption and so it's not a giant slingshot. We've identified that there are heavy steel cables and metal posts involved. Let's see if we can find a way to make a lighter, energy absorbing "fence" so we can do away with the cables. Then let's look at a modified system similar to the safer barriers for suspending it so there's some standoff from the posts.
    Last edited by DaveP63; 10-20-2011 at 04:15 PM. Reason: spelling
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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  3. #27
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Quote Originally Posted by Sandman21 View Post
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    I think they move Marco or RHR into that seat and call up Stefan Wilson from the Indy Lights series. Or, if they can lure him away from Sam Schmidt, Josef Newgarden.
    Newgarden would be a good get.
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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  5. #28
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    I think Alex Tagliani would be a decent fit for Andretti. His contract with Sam Schmidt is up. He might end up returning to SSM, though.

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Thank you Bob Jenkins!

    http://www.bobjenkinsracing.com/news/

    Good to see him, AJ, Mario, and Jay Howard (who said Jimmeh didn't have the kahonas to step into a Indycar to begin with) fighting back against these critics who could have cared less about Indycar before Sunday.
    "Nobody wants to play against Tyler Hansbrough NO BODY!" ~ Frank Vogel

    "And David put his hand in the bag and took out a stone and slung it. And it struck the Philistine on the head and he fell to the ground. Amen. "
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    How is Jimmie Johnson a critic of IndyCar? He basically said himself he wasn't ballsy enough to do it and that those cars are too advanced for ovals. How is that being critical? It sounds like a compliment to me.

    His very first stat, comparing the number of deaths, is incredibly skewed considering how many more stock car races and drivers there are.

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  10. #31
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    If you put an egg in a solid steel box and drop the box the egg will still break so the open cockpit isn't as dangerous per se (in comparison to Nascar) as it seems on first glance.
    Nuntius was right. I was wrong. Frank Vogel has retained his job.

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    The open cockpit's extra dangers are not necessarily just in situations like we saw with Dan on Sunday, but they are there. You are much more exposed to the flying debris off your car, which is how Senna died in '94.

    “WE NEVER SURRENDER, WE NEVER GIVE UP, WE KEEP ATTACKING”- Frank Vogel
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    There have been talks about canopies and whatnot as a preventative measure to keep drivers from getting hit in the head. I can see a whole host of difficulties with implementing something like that, not the least of which is making is strong enough to survive that kind of impact, but at this point, if they want to put rub rails around it like an indoor go kart, I'm on board.
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Driver's meeting scheduled at the Speedway on Monday. Randy B and whatever drivers are still in town. Discussing safety topics, new car, 1.5 mile tracks and where the series goes from here.
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Quote Originally Posted by DaveP63 View Post
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    There have been talks about canopies and whatnot as a preventative measure to keep drivers from getting hit in the head. I can see a whole host of difficulties with implementing something like that, not the least of which is making is strong enough to survive that kind of impact, but at this point, if they want to put rub rails around it like an indoor go kart, I'm on board.
    Wait, isn't that NASCAR?

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Fighter jet style, but canopies none the less...I may have to draw the line at tube frames and roll cages...And "splitters"...And spoilers...
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    If it has a chance of saving the life of a driver going headfirst into a catch fence, then I think it needs to be on the table. No more Gordon Smileys or Tony Rennas or Dan Wheldons for me.
    Last edited by Sandman21; 10-22-2011 at 05:36 PM.
    "Nobody wants to play against Tyler Hansbrough NO BODY!" ~ Frank Vogel

    "And David put his hand in the bag and took out a stone and slung it. And it struck the Philistine on the head and he fell to the ground. Amen. "
    Want your own "Just Say No to Kamen" from @mkroeger pic? http://twitpic.com/a3hmca

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    BTW, we lost IronManMike this morning.
    "Nobody wants to play against Tyler Hansbrough NO BODY!" ~ Frank Vogel

    "And David put his hand in the bag and took out a stone and slung it. And it struck the Philistine on the head and he fell to the ground. Amen. "
    Want your own "Just Say No to Kamen" from @mkroeger pic? http://twitpic.com/a3hmca

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    A fighter jet style cockpit would be cool, but I imagine it presents issues because it would get incredibly uncomfortable in there.

    “WE NEVER SURRENDER, WE NEVER GIVE UP, WE KEEP ATTACKING”- Frank Vogel
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Quote Originally Posted by Sandman21 View Post
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    BTW, we lost IronManMike this morning.
    The only thing that was comforting about this was knowing that Dan was there to greet the little guy on the other side. Perhaps everything does happen for a reason...You couldn't ask for a better smiling face to welcome you to eternity than Dan's.

    “WE NEVER SURRENDER, WE NEVER GIVE UP, WE KEEP ATTACKING”- Frank Vogel
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  22. #41
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    I was out running some errands today and decided to drive by the Speedway. From my car, I was able to get a decent look at the makeshift memorial at the 16th and Georgetown entrance. There were several people stopped looking at it and now I wish I would have parked and got out of my car.

    It was moving to see all the tributes put up for him.
    Last edited by Sollozzo; 10-23-2011 at 10:10 PM.

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  24. #42
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    I still have several thoughts about things Indycar needs to do or seek input on moving forward and some other thoughts.

    A scattered, random sampling:

    We're talking about the pack racing and getting rid of it. One answer is to quit neglecting the elephant sitting on the living room sofa- Open the damn rule book up and get rid of the spec cars. Allow teams much more flexibility in what they can do with the aero packages and setups. Start getting away from the idea that builders must agree to supply a percentage of the field, especially at the micro-levels.

    Find out exactly why oval racing has lost it's appeal so sharply these past few years. Bad promotion? Not enough drivers that capture the imagination of casual fans? 1.5 mile oval races looking too much like 'manufactured racing'... looking too dangerous... not appealing to fans that prefer Nascar on them.... ??? Sanction fees too high and taking up too much of the promoter's budget leaving advertising and marketing neglected (with a series that can't afford that)? Not enough self promotion by the series (or self promotion that is missing the target)? Too many races lost to viewers (or lack of) on Versus? And what of the ovals like Milwaukee or Loudon... why are they poorly attended? All ovals are not created equal so why are all suffering? I don't think we can keep blaming the local promoters. At some point Indycar is going to have to look in the mirror and figure out where they can do a better job helping local promoters.

    And are all ovals really suffering... or is it just these mega grandstand Nascar tracks making it look that way and creating this negative perception? Getting 30,000 at a track that seats 30,000 is a smashing success.... getting 30,000 at a track that seats 100,000 is a dismal failure?

    Although I still think ESPN/ABC does a really bad job on their Indycar race productions I have a new found respect for Marty Reid in light of his work during the Vegas broadcast and his appearance at the memorial at Conseco. I think I had the wrong opinion of Reid just because of his association with ESPN/ABC. Todd Harris he is not.

    This outpouring of support for Wheldon and his family should show people that Indy still matters. It's still relevant. Whatever the series and associates do, they should keep that in mind.
    Nuntius was right. I was wrong. Frank Vogel has retained his job.

    ------

    "A player who makes a team great is more valuable than a great player. Losing yourself in the group, for the good of the group, that’s teamwork."

    -John Wooden

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  26. #43
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    I'll try to find out some specifics about what's being tossed around the room at the speedway meetings. I suspect some of what you mentioned is being openly discussed.

    Second paragraph. Yes. To all of it. My pet peeve? Putting it out to die on Versus. I don't get Versus unless it's a free preview and I've got the 200 package. It sucks.

    Third item. Self perpetuating problem. The cookie cutters all wanted Neckcar races. They all added 100K seats for all the Neckcar fans. As you point out, 30K in 100K seats looks pitiful. However, they are now seeing 50K in those 100K seats at a lot of tracks. They may start quietly removing some seats. I think the boom is over. I watched the start at Talledega this weekend. As soon as it broke up into 2 car "packs" I turned it off and took a nap. Even THEY are starting to get the message that people are bored and sickened by this manufactured pack racing and all it entails.

    As for the last two, right on the money and I couldn't agree more. I used to hate Marty and Eddie especially. Both did yeoman's service during the broadcast.
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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  28. #44
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Update:

    Nothing concrete coming out of the meetings, but Dallara are hoping that there aren't too many engineering changes mandated since they are already behind production of the new cars. Surprise, surprise...
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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  30. #45
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Bernhard speaks-
    http://www.indystar.com/article/2011...horrific-week-

    It's not a vanilla interview per se' but much of the information you could guess what was said by following Indycar this season.
    Nuntius was right. I was wrong. Frank Vogel has retained his job.

    ------

    "A player who makes a team great is more valuable than a great player. Losing yourself in the group, for the good of the group, that’s teamwork."

    -John Wooden

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  32. #46
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Also, there may be some issues with engine suppliers...
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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  34. #47
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Bruce Martin>INSIDE RACING

    Wheldon's fatal crash prompts closer look at Vegas fence design

    In Nevada, and at sister Speedway Motorsports Inc. (SMI) tracks in Texas, Kentucky and New Hampshire, the steel supports are on the racetrack side, with the fencing located behind them on the grandstand side. At Indianapolis Motor Speedway and all non-SMI tracks on the 2011 schedule, the fencing is on the racetrack side, with the steel supports behind them on the grandstand side.

    Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/201...#ixzz1c8pebKhI
    Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/201...#ixzz1c8pS48Z4

    This surprised me because I know a ruckus was made over this issue following another car getting into the fence. Either Brack's or Hamilton's IIRC. I thought at the time the IRL had mandated the issue was going to change. But apparently not.... Not only that but from the article and interviews it would appear no further testing was done either.

    I'm not going to pretend to know how much this issue matters in general or to this particular accident, but considering I know the issue of the posts has been at the forefront of an accident in the past I'm a little surprised series officials don't have some data on this and studies to point to.
    Nuntius was right. I was wrong. Frank Vogel has retained his job.

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    "A player who makes a team great is more valuable than a great player. Losing yourself in the group, for the good of the group, that’s teamwork."

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  36. #48
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Excellent article. Sounds like somebody at 16th and Georgetown dropped the ball on following up on this. Or they decided they didn't give a ****...I don't know what kind of raving lunatic would think having the posts trackside is a good idea. The euros picked up on that about the same time we introduced them to seat belts.
    http://www.grantland.com/blog/the-tr...nce-stephenson
    "But, first, let us now praise famous moments, because something happened Tuesday night in Indianapolis that you can watch a lifetime’s worth of professional basketball and never see again. There was a brief, and very decisive, and altogether unprecedented, outburst of genuine officiating, and it was directed at the best player in the world, and that, my dear young person, simply is not done."

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  38. #49
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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    I'd like to hear some more inside scoop on this fence issue. What it smells like is that Indycar didn't have the clout to get tracks to change their fencing so they made the choice to run the tracks as-is versus their only other alternative... refusing to run the tracks until this was changed (fully knowing the tracks would just shrug and say "no Indycar then").

    If that is true then there probably wasn't much testing or research done on the issue because they probably didn't want to know what the data might show.

    Hopefully I'm wrong....
    Nuntius was right. I was wrong. Frank Vogel has retained his job.

    ------

    "A player who makes a team great is more valuable than a great player. Losing yourself in the group, for the good of the group, that’s teamwork."

    -John Wooden

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    Default Re: Indycar 2011- Lots to contemplate

    Full article- http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/95688


    Zanardi hits out at pack racing in IndyCar following Wheldon's death

    "As I often say, it's not speed the cause of such a crash. If anything, it could be an aggravating factor," Zanardi said in an interview with Autosprint magazine.

    "My early years of oval racing, up to 1998, were always very dangerous. Back then, setting up the car meant finding a compromise on the car's speed. You would let it slide until the downforce wasn't yet too low in a way that penalises turn speed too much.

    "It was drift driving, and tyre degradation was an important parameter. If a driver crashed against the wall, it was usually his own mistake after he had underestimated these factors.

    "Nowadays, instead, driving has become too easy. At turn entry, mid turn, and turn exit, the car is attached to the road surface. In the name of safety - in principle it was even right - the intention was to slow down the cars by giving them an exaggerated amount of downforce, and therefore high drag.

    "The result was that, in order to find speed, you now see set-ups with the front being 7cm higher than the rear to lessen the wing's influence! This is nonsense, but it's a necessity to beat the stop watch."
    He's not a fan of the Handford device:
    "At the beginning of 1998, the Handford wing was introduced in our series. It was a sort of an L-shaped Gurney flap attached backwards, and it was supposed to slow down the cars by generating drag. After the first race I, Michael Andretti and Greg Moore were literally assaulted by enthusiastic journalists who would say what a great race it was, what spectacle.

    "We looked at each other and, without having agreed beforehand, we replied simultaneously: 'Have you seen the same race as us?'

    "For us it had been crap: with the Handford you couldn't open up a gap to your rival anymore.

    "Our job wasn't to race anymore, it was to wait to catch the final slipstream. No more talent, just strategy and that's it. In the long term, this has made the Indy audience fall out of love too.
    And another voice confirming what I believe to be the obvious-

    "With these cars, instead, you drive by always keeping the inside white line as your reference, just because that's the shortest line; the car is glued to the track anyway. But I prefer to race with 1,000 bhp while having to manage the car, instead of nowadays' 650 bhp and these absurd levels of grip."
    Last edited by Bball; 10-29-2011 at 10:30 PM.
    Nuntius was right. I was wrong. Frank Vogel has retained his job.

    ------

    "A player who makes a team great is more valuable than a great player. Losing yourself in the group, for the good of the group, that’s teamwork."

    -John Wooden

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