Posts Tagged ‘ IndyCar Series ’

Hildebrand checking out his ride

Hildebrand checking out his ride.

J.R. Hildebrand, the 2009 Firestone Indy Lights champion, isn’t a stranger to auto racing challenges. He’ll face the next one in August — driving an IndyCar at Mid-Ohio and Infineon.

J.R. (John Randall) Hildebrand also isn’t a stranger to having a good time. A Sausalito, Calif., native/resident who enjoys sports of all sorts and looking at Alcatraz Island on a foggy morning, he provides a glimpse of the man behind the wheel in the video below.

Hildebrand recently announced his partnership with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing for the two IZOD IndyCar Series events with an eye on driving full time in 2011.

IndyCar Fans Unite

Posted on: July 1, 2010 | Comments(2) | New Media, Race Tracks | By: Admin

What better way to celebrate the Fourth of July than with an IndyCar race? Red, white and blue, New York and a blur of IndyCars racing around Watkins Glen– Sign me up! And what better way to celebrate our fans than by giving away cool IndyCar stuff?

Happy Fourth of July Race Fans

What you may already know (especially if you are reading this blog) is that the new media department has been trying to keep our fans online experience nothing short of legendary.

What you may not know is that we have amped up our social media interaction by running give-away contests. That means, every week for the past month we have given away an exclusive race fan prize pack via our Twitter ReTweet (RT) contest.

Past winner's comment!

Past winner's comment!

We want you to win something! Just RT the special contest tweet posted by @IndyCarNation and if you happen to be the 50th RT then you win! Simple, easy, FANtastic. I’ll even give you a hint: we usually run the contest on Wednesdays so keep your tweepers peeled for the special contest tweet.

More things you may not know: Did you know NASCAR has more fans than IndyCar on Facebook? They also have more followers on Twitter! Not knocking on NASCAR but I’d like to think the IndyCar Series has a similarly large, if not larger fan base! We want all of your fans to be represented so check us out on Facebook here and follow us on Twitter here.

Patriotic Fans

These social sites enable us to give you brand spanking new photos, videos, blogs, driver /team information, news and most importantly feedback! Ask us a question or tell us what is on your mind.  Look forward to interacting with you! Shout out to @jscott_grtv for winning the RT contest yesterday- Congrats!

Since my last blog entry things have really taken off for the 16th Street Racing League. Our race this past Tuesday truly showed how much our internet exposure these past few weeks has raised our stock.

Tuesday evening started out like all of our other race nights. I opened the practice room at 7PM (EST) and 10-12 of our regular drivers immediately showed up to begin testing. I stepped out to dinner for about 40 minutes and I was completely shocked when I returned. WE HAD 33 CARS! We’ve never had that many on a road course and the only race we’ve had more cars was our PSRTV.COM broadcast event at Michigan International Speedway.

Ryan Murray, 16th Street Racing League Champion (Spring 2010 Season), showed he was as strong as ever on the road courses during qualifying. Ryan took the pole with a blistering 1:31.653 followed closely by his teammates Tim Holgate and Bryan Heitkotter. Very impressive considering IndyCar drivers Will Power (P4), AJ Foyt IV (P15), Larry Foyt (P19), US F2000 points leader Sage Karam, and former Nationwide Series racer Kyle Krisiloff (P11) all showed up to race around the Glen with us. Qualifying was no easy task with so many cars. I felt like every time I would get a good lap going I would have to slow to avoid another car, throwing my flying lap away.  I never really got a great lap in and qualified a disappointing 13th position with a 1:34.057.

For many, the race was over quickly. As we took the green flag Sage Karam misjudged the closing rate on the cars in front and ran into the back of Kyle Krisiloff sending himself, Kyle, and Tim Doyle into the fence and ending their day before turn one (a close call for me as I started directly behind Kyle).

Crash!

Crash!

Car Cam

My Car Cam- Close call!

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The iconic Lotus yellow stripes atop the helmet worn by Takuma Sato in the Indianapolis 500 accentuated the side panel images of his No. 5 Lotus-KV Racing Technology car and the ’65 Indy-winning Lotus 38 driven by Jim Clark.

Jason Fowler of England devoted 45 hours to creating the one-off piece with the aid of a computer and steady hand with an air brush. Obviously, as the corresponding video details, there’s a lot more that goes into it.

“I was really pleased with how the helmet looked as it was a challenge fitting the detailed airbrush pictures into such a small area,” Fowler said in a phone interview from his London headquarters. “We were also working against the clock as the helmet was only commissioned a few weeks before the race so there were quite a few late nights worked to make sure it was finished in time.”

“The helmet seemed to work well from both angles; the airbrushed pictures gave it the ‘Wow!’ factor and the classic Lotus stripes were still visible from a distance.”

Fowler, who used to customize his helmets with stickers and paint while racing motorcross in the early ‘80s and paint helmets for friends, left his day job to start his own business customizing helmets. Dan Wheldon, E.J. Viso and Lewis Hamilton are among his longtime clients.

“I had wanted to go to the Indy 500 for many years and finally got to go this year,” he said. “It was the best motor racing experience I have ever had, and I was amazed at the scale of the event. More than anything, I was impressed with the atmosphere and the accessibility of the whole event and the way the fans were encouraged to be integral to the race.”

“I had three drivers wearing our helmets in the race (Wheldon, Viso and Sato) and it was a really proud feeling to be just a small part of such an iconic race. I’m definitely coming back next year.”

Going Green

Posted on: June 23, 2010 | Comments (1) | More than meets the eye | By: Shawn

Fan with Flag

Fan with Flag

(Fan with Flag) Photo Info: f 4.0 at 1/2000 with a 50 mm. lensbaby.

As I sat in the media center post-race, eating my complimentary corn nuts, it somehow seemed fitting that the guy with the green and gold helmet walked away with the victory… It was a “green” race, both literally and figuratively, green fields, green event T’s, green trophy, and of course the smell of ethanol. For Tony Kanaan, luck has been hard to come by as of late. As I stood in Tony’s pit box watching a tire bounce across the pit lane I thought for certain another victory had been lost, but a quick response by his crew kept him in the game. Then, with only a handful of laps to go, the golden handprints on the back of his helmet appeared to almost push him to victory on this Father’s Day.

Kanaan in the Pits

Pit Lane

(Pit Lane) Photo Info: f 2.8 at 1/8000 with a 50 mm. fisheye.

Helmet close up

Kanaan

(Tony’s Eye) Photo info: f/14 at 1/160 with a 70-200 mm. zoom.

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The Versatile Veggie

Posted on: June 18, 2010 | Comments(2) | Race Tracks | By: Dave

 As Americans’ favorite vegetable, corn ranks second to the potato (mashed is the top choice) in a recent survey.

Iowans will concede that honor to their neighbors from Idaho, but they claim boasting rights regarding corn as the grain of choice for biofuel. Corn grown in Iowa is driving the alternative fuel industry that produced a record 10.75 billion gallons of biofuel last year, reducing demand for imported oil by 364 million barrels. So far, no viable fuel has been developed utilizing the potato.

Corn is the most abundant U.S. crop, valued at $47.6 billion in 2009, and the U.S. is the largest producer and exporter in the world. U.S. farmers will produce a record 13.37 billion bushels in the autumn harvest.  The amount of corn used for ethanol production in 2010 will total a record 4.55 billion bushels, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Iowa Corn Indy 250

The Official Logo

Of course, this all ties in to the IZOD IndyCar Series, which is the only form of motorsports to use a renewable and environmentally-friendly fuel (100 percent fuel-grade ethanol) to power its Honda Indy V-8 engines. Corn ethanol (the fermentation of plant sugars) is the fuel source for the fourth Iowa Corn Indy 250 presented by Pioneer.

And here’s one parting stat to share on Father’s Day: Farmers grow five times as much corn as they did in the 1930s on 20 percent less land and produce 70 percent more corn per pound of fertilizer than they did 35 years ago.

Unfortunately, there was no IZOD IndyCar Series race this past weekend. One question seemed to weigh heavy on the new media department’s mind- What would our loyal race fans do?!  

For the sake of being nosy, we asked them straight up. The response was overwhelming! Both our Facebook page and Twitter thread began to pile up with feedback.  A grand total of 258 Facebook comments and endless tweets later we had some idea of what our fans were up to. The bulk of the comments revolved around racing-Duh. There were some big races this weekend that were not part of the IndyCar Series, for instance, the Formula 1 race in Montreal and the infamous LeMans 24 Hour Race

The technology behind IndyCar

We asked, you answered.

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James Hinchcliffe is a Firestone Indy Lights Driver and member of the Pace Car Team. In this post “Hinch” describes his participation during the Firestone 550K Race at Texas Motor Speedway.  

When the manager of the Pace Car Team told me I was going to Texas Motor Speedway for the latest round of the IZOD IndyCar Series, I was stoked!  What she neglected to mention was that it was going to be 1000 degrees and 800% humidity!  Being a pasty Canadian fellow, this presented a problem.  But armed with SPF 85, a full brimmed hat and those crazy wrap-around sunglasses that old people in Florida wear, I was good to go!

This trip I got to go down with CK, whom you all know from his famous underwear line.  OK, it’s not THAT CK, it was fellow PCT member Charlie Kimball.  We flew down Friday morning and when we walked out of the plane it felt like we got hit by a Mack Truck of heat!

Pace Car Team

The Pace Car Team in Texas

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That little thing called MAY

Posted on: June 8, 2010 | Comments (0) | (L)IZOD | By: Admin

My may might have ended with some ridiculous tan lines on my feet, but it started at the Meijer store across from my apartment. On a quest for blueberries, I walk in and see a cardboard Marco staring back at me.  Goodness, I adore Indy’s passion for the 500. Candied tires and checkered everything. 

Meijer Marco

Meijer Marco

The planning process for May is definitely stressful, especially whilst trying to fit in a race every other weekend. But on 5.14, we kicked it off with the first-ever all-driver autograph session at the Macy’s in Castleton Square Mall. Mind you, I have a soft spot for this mall. Many-a-day shopping for shoes and cruising for boys. Does ANYONE remember the Units store? Mix-n-match cotton sashes? No?

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Victory Celebration

Posted on: June 4, 2010 | Comments(6) | Indy 500 | By: Leslie

Dario at the Awards Banquet

Dario Franchitti at the Victory Celebration

Year after year, Indianapolis 500 drivers gather with racing big wigs, celebrities, and even a few lucky people like me, to join together in celebrating the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race. On Monday night, we all braved the rain to honor Dario Franchitti in his second win and the 32 other drivers on their efforts. Now, I could tell you about the $13,592,815 in purse money given away that evening or the highlights of Franchitti’s spot on performance on Sunday. But there are other places you can read about that.  I’d like to share with you a few other highlights, from the perspective of a lucky girl.

This was not the IMS Event Planning Teams’ first rodeo – err, race. Per usual, yellow shirts galore guided us to the speedway pavilion where we were greeted at our cars by golf carts to get us into the banquet, and out of the rain. Upon entering the tent was a bar offering The “Caipirindy”, based off of Brazil’s “National Cocktail” the Caipirinha, or what driver E.J. Viso tells me – a headache. There was another signature drink available called The “Finish Line” but quite honestly I passed because it looked like a cross between a Bloody Mary and a berry smoothie. Then again, maybe that was just Sunday’s festivities haunting me.

After a bit of mingling (for me this consisted of smiling and waving as I hunted down something other than a Caipirinha) we were seated to a meal of standard banquet food, and the show began. Side note on the subject of seating here: this year the members of the board, the Hulman-George Family, the drivers, and guests were seated at long banquet tables, rather than the usual round tables. Good for TV, bad for me as I quite enjoy secretly observing the expressions of the guests throughout the evening…annnnnd I think I just discovered one of the reasons that’s changed.

The introduction “short film” was incredibly well done and I would say the best opening of the Victory Celebration I’ve seen in the five years I’ve been attending. In fact, I meant to ask Terry Angsted and John Lewis, with whom we were seated if they’ve looked into their SAG cards yet. Move over, Brad Pitt.

Borg Warner Trophy

Borg Warner Trophy

The evening was full of jokes and thank you’s, tears and even a little prescription drug use – ahem, Ryan Hunter Ray. In all honesty, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t catch myself doodling once or twice (no offense Dave Calabro) but at the end of every Victory Celebration there comes a moment. You see the winner and their team on stage, applauded by their peers and admirers. And you see the look in their eyes when they look at the Borg Warner Trophy and know that their face will be forever etched in history as a winner of “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” And in that moment that you know it’s not about the purse money, or the cocktails, or the high end production television.

It’s about the love of racing.