Ah, Indycar at Infineon…wine, beautiful track, gorgeous weather, fast cars, and a good time for a nap. They don’t call in “Infini-yawn” and “Snor-oma” for nothing. To make matters worse, I have to watch all races telecast on Versus at the gym on a treadmill or elliptical since I can’t get Versus at my loft. It is a lot easier to stay on a treadmill or elliptical for 2 hours if the race is interesting, but after about 30-minutes I was on the verge of a Karen Carpenter style collapse.
Mr. Angry Birds, Will Power, totally dominated the race weekend starting from the pole and leading all but 4-laps. We are talking a Folsom Street Fair, S&M total domination. Rihanna would have been proud. Sadly, I pined for the drama of New Hampshire…the Danica pirouette and ensuing melee, Tomas Scheckter’s 3-wide passes in turn 1, Tony Kanaan flipping and knocking over a Port-O-Potty, and Will Power’s flying middle-fingers.
The only yellow-flag of the event came out when Chinese rookie Ho-Pin Tung, in his first Indycar start and the first start by a Chinese in Indycar, attempted to overtake Alex Tagliani and instead ended up off track and bouncing off the wall. I’m sure it was not how he was “Ho-Pin” his first start would go. If you will recall, Tung attempted to qualify for the Indianapolis 500 this year, but he backed the car into the wall between turns 1 and 2 during his qualifying attempt. I will refrain from any Asian driver jokes, but feel free to insert your own here…at least they don’t have to use a blinker in an Indycar…
Rookie Martin Plowman made his 2nd start of the year in the #17 AFS/Sam Schmidt Motorsport entry sponsored by Snowball Express. Plowman was impressive and finished a respectable 12th. Martin drove hard, plowing through the field from his 15th starting position. Ryan Hunter-Reay and Oriol Servia were in the process of getting plowed by Martin before running out of time in the closing laps. The Snowball Express machine put a smile on my face as I’m sure it did many others. I was confused to learn that Snowball Express was NOT what I imagined…(Between the sponsor and his last name I could go on for hours…)
HVM Racing’s Simona de Silvestro was unable to compete at Infineon. When attempting to return to the US from a visit to her home country of Switzerland, she encountered visa issues and was not allowed to return in time. However, it is “rumored” that de Silvestro kept referring to herself as the “Swiss Missile” which caused passenger uproar and a security breach. Switzerland decided to keep her as the only missile in their arsenal. 2011’s super-sub Simon Pagenaud took the reign of Pork Chop for the weekend. Pork Chop tweeted, “Pardon my French, but who’s ass is in my cockpit?!”. Oui oui! Sounds like a come-on line to me. And yes, Simona’s car has a Twitter. I highly recommend you following him as he is the funniest Dallara you will ever meet.
Andretti Autosport announced over the weekend that RC Cola would sponsor Marco Andretti full-time in 2012. I am going to be the first to start the campaign to get Moon Pie’s to sponsor another entry for the team. I’m most positive that the RC Cola and Moon Pie cars would be the most popular entries at the Barber Motorsports Park race outside of Birmingham, Alabama. Being from Mississippi, I have enjoyed the pleasure of an RC Cola and Moon Pie many times in my life. And, forget getting beads at Mardi Gras, I want a banana flavored Moon Pie!
So, that is it from Sonoma. Next week Indycar heads to Baltimore for the Inaugural Grand Prix of Baltimore. The temporary street course runs through downtown, by the inner harbor, around Camden Yards, and the Baltimore Convention Center. Teams have no prior experience or testing on the course, so I expect solid runs from rookies and some of the smaller teams. My main man Tomas Scheckter will return to pilot the #07 Redline Extreme machine. I personally think Tomas should race shirtless, but that’s just me. One can dream…
Ross (@driverswanted07 on Twitter)