Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Indycar Redux

After watching Indycar spend a couple hours driving at reduced speed two weeks ago to save fuel, this weekend we watched Indycar driving 20 laps at even lower speeds to reduce tire wear. Management of the open wheel series has totally lost the bubble.

This week the race was touted as "The Million Dollar Challenge"  all winter and into the opening race of the season. Unfortunately, Indycar could not attract enough sponsorship money and was forced to reduce the winning prize to $500,000, but continued to tout the "race" as the "The Million Dollar Challenge," even during the "race" and while displaying the $500,000 prize amount on the screen.

The heat races were 20 laps long but, like the first race, announcers were telling us how slowly the drivers would be going in order to conserve. This week it was tire tread they were conserving because they were not allowed to change tires and the tires were predicted to last only about ten of the allocated 20 laps. 

Wait. Tires that can only go ten laps? Indycar has descended into comedy land. It turns out you have to drive even slower to save tire wear than you do to save fuel.

No spectators were to be seen because there are no grandstands for them to sit in. This  "race" was held at a private club. You can imagine the setting of a HOA with a privately owned, 3.6-mile race track. You're right; it costs $5 million to join.

Indycar did sell ticket packages to hang out at the HOA club house for the event - for a whopping $2,000. When they failed to sell out, they dropped the price to $500, and issued refunds to the folks who had paid the higher price. Teams were pleased, since even they had been forced to spend $2,000 just to bring guests to the track for the weekend.

We did get some very pretty views of the Southern California desert mountains, views that were far more breathtaking than was the "racing."

1 comment:

  1. sounds like a club where the member want to "drive an Indy Car" and be all wow and all. But maybe vicariously. Or virtually... But 10 laps? who the heck is making these tires? N one I want to be buying tires from, that's for sure. Or they have a really bad track.