[Admin Note - This is the first blog post from IndyCar's Pace Car Team featuring Indy Lights drivers Martin Plowman, Stefan Wilson, James Hinchcliffe and Charlie Kimball (Stefan took this post off). They'll be blogging throughout the season bringing you their own perspective on the Indy Lights season, life and driving the pace car. IndyCar.com wrote about them earlier this season. Enjoy.]
When I got asked to be a part of the Pace Car Team, my first thought was, “I’ll drive anything, anywhere, anytime, so why not?” Little did I know it was going to be such a fun experience. We are now two races into our season (the Lights not having made the trip to Brazil) and it just keeps getting better. Outside of the obvious plus of getting drive Honda Accord V6’s as fast as I possibly can around racetracks I love and give people the rides of their lives, I have really enjoyed the time with the other members of the Pace Car Team. Rarely in the past have I been able to become friends with competitive drivers. Racing in Europe, we were all spread out and not everyone spoke the same language. Now though, most of the drivers live in Indianapolis and with the Pace Car Team, while we are competitors on track, we have become friends away from the track. This is despite the fact that two of the other members speak ‘British’ not American. My time living in England helps with the translations for sure! Plus, the chance to scare VIP’s, Media, and other assorted passengers- that’s why we really do what we do! Snidely Whiplash, eat your heart out!
..This is Plowey checking in, we’re 2 events into the campaign, we’ve reported only minor casualties of near death pyschological trauma from our first few confrontations with the public. Overall our goal of scaring the be-jesus out of our targets has been successful…the only problem, boss, is that they are growing stronger in numbers and more courageous at every event. It’s as if they are becoming immune to us?!?
Report to HQ to find a better way to keep them scared. The PCT’s best days are still to come. Indy is our next city to be captured. Turn 1 will be our biggest weapon at wiping out their smiles of enjoyment! They aren’t supposed to enjoy a pace car ride are they?!…
That’s all for now, boss, its time to scrape the paint and grass stains off of my car ready for May.
Well hello there! We did it. The 2010 Pace Car Team actually made it through the first two rounds of the season with no issues! Well, ok, if you were to ask some of my teammates, they would tell you there was a SLIGHT issue on the very first laps of the very first event where one of the drivers was a little hard on the equipment and chunked a tire! I will not confirm or deny this happened and I won’t say which driver it was to protect their identity. Ok fine, it was me. But I swear it was like that when I got there…
Speaking of my teammates, I think it’s now an appropriate time to talk about them a bit. First of all we have Charlie Kimball, aka Chuckles, aka CK. Chuckles is basically straight out of Compton…or somewhere
in California…and on top of being a great race car driver, he is great with numbers. It is for this reason we nominated him Pace Car Team treasurer. What does that entail? We’re not entirely sure, but we’ll think of something soon.
Next up is Martin Plowman, aka Plowey, aka Martino “The Wrench” Plowski. He has the distinction of being the shortest of the group, which is good for lots of things. We won’t hold his funny taste in music against him because he has honour of being the first Pace Car Team driver to make someone wet themselves this year. An achievement the rest of us can only dream of.
Last, but most, is Stefan Wilson, aka Stretch, aka Slinky. If you haven’t figured it out, Stretch is tall. Very tall. He does all his Pace Car Rides with his head sticking out of the sunroof, which makes the speed at which he hurls fans around the racetrack all the more impressive. We have already contacted Guinness to swing by the track here in Long Beach as we are looking to confirm that he is, in fact, the tallest open wheel racing driver on Earth!
We have already had so much fun, got to be part of many cool events and met a ton of interesting people. And the season is just beginning. So keep checking in on us, as I can assure you, the antics will not stop. I can only imagine they will escalate to the point of someone being institutionalized. God help us all!