Monthly Archives: May 2009

Milwaukee Mile *live race blog*

Ok… so I’ve got visual. TV at the bar tuned in. Unfortunately the volume is at a whisper, and I’m in the back with two loud gay men who know nothing about racing. (is this Nascar?) who are playing a rather rambunctious game of backgammon. (I kid you not) On top of that of course is the loud pool game and the awful country music. :bangs head on table:

Time to re-up and get cable again me thinks. Or a boyfriend with a big… TV. πŸ˜‰

hmm… nice looking little crowd.

Princess cookie maker gets her airtime. Actually it’s been all Penske, AGR so far.
Marco showing better judgment in this interview than last weekend.

Brief mention of Vitor, showed the crash,
commercial break

AJ Foyt: re Vitor: “Racing goes on”
re PT: “we kinda screwed him up in qualifying” LOL!

and now the Ganassi interviews. what? no interviews???
Wow… whodda thunk that Foyt racing would ever get airtime before the big three??
(well, come to think of it, it is “his” race)

“Drivers start your engines!” I think…
nice mic not turned on there… geesh.

what is with the 976 babe voice on the radio broadcast? LOL!! That kills me!

and there they go! engines fired, cars on track for installation laps.

are you fucking kidding me? the on boards are on both Vision cars? GMFB!
spread the love!! (I personally think it should be one per team) (or actually, they should all have a damn camera!)

Lets see if we can line up like professionals this week…

Green green green!!!

Graham around for the lead!
Wait! Kanaan threads the needle gets around both Briscoe and Rahal!
Rahal down to third.

Andretti dropping like a stone! something is broken on that car.

Franchitti on the move!
Tracy up to 14th

Nice dicing by Scheckter and the Princess!

side by side commercial break

Helio not carving his way through the field like he usually does.

That Boost commercial is nasty… is there anyway I can un-see that???

we’re back – lap 18

PT is dropping like a stone. Duking it out with Carpenter. They are about to be lapped by the leaders. WTF?!

Tracy DFL. (heart breaks a little)

Leaderboard:
Kanaan, Brisco, Dixon, Rahal, Franchitti, Moraes

Briscoe around Kanaan in lap 26, Dixon takes advantage of the open door and gets around as well.

Rahal all over the back of TK now.

commercial (not side by side) Apparently I don’t need to know what is going on. *switch to radio*

Briscoe & Dixon around Carpenter. Stalking Helio.
Graham reporting problems with oversteer (or understeer?)
PT is reporting the car is loose. (that’s code for it’s a piece of shit!)

We’re back from commerical:
Briscoe coming up behind Helio. hmmm… team orders? yes no?
Fyi… we’re on lap 41

Kanaan down to 9th.
oooh Briscoe throws a block party for Dixon!

Doornbos is the cog in the wheel, holding up Twinkletoes, who is holding up Briscoe.

Woah, Twinkletoes not playing nice with his teammate. Apparently he has a short memory of last week when his teammate helped him win. Selfish fuck.

Commerical (side by side) lap 49. Naked Marco. My eyes have officially melted out of my skull.

PT is a moving chicane out there. (I’m silently weeping)

we’re back at lap 55 Briscoe is still out front, Dixon right on his ass. If he losses the lead, it is ALL on Castroneves.

Conway into the wall in turn 4. :mocks surprise here:

I love how the radio is describing all of this amazing dicing, yet the tv is showing Kanaan doing shit fuck all, while answering viewer email. Fucking horrible coverage.

Festival of pitting,(β„’ Pressdog)
Briscoe gets out in front, followed by Dixon & Franchitti
ha! Twinkletoes stalls it. Instant karma. my viewing is enhanced. (β„’ Pressdog)

Viso has gearbox issues, still on pitlane. Poor bastard. That car is a pig. They need some new equipment for that kid. He had a really good run going.

Tracy pitted twice. No idea why… Nothing to lose at this point I guess

back to commercial (not side by side) Ironically the quiet music plays during commercial. But when the race is on, I can’t hear shit.

oh, update, the loud gay couple are playing scrabble. Not backgammon.

Green green green! (the radio feed is so far off the tv feed. gah.

Look at Mutoh up to 5th! wow.
Tracy is 2 laps down.
Kanaan gets around Carpenter. Wheldon follows suit.

Viso back out 12 laps down. 😦

replay of Tracy’s pit: good lord! they cranked on Paul’s front wing like it was a music box. 😦 That car is not right.

commercial at lap 83 (side by side) vile Boost commerical again…

This is not an exciting race. Why can’t these cars pass properly and make it stick?

we’re back: lap 89
Briscoe, Dixon, Franchitti, Rahal, Mutoh, Matoes, Patrick, Moraes

Briscoe about to lap RHR. at least that’s the plan. Atta boy!
Now he will be behind Helio again. Let’s see if he plays nice this time.

Marco and TK battling mid pack. Be smart Marco.

TK slingshots around PT, Helio throwing a block party on Brisco. What a prick.

commerical lap 107 surprise suprise another Danica commercial. Fuck me.

Finally Briscoe gets around Twinkletoes. Gets around Scheckter as well. About to put PT another lap down. *sigh*

120 laps complete:
Briscoe, Dixon, Franchitti, Rahal, Mutoh,
Briscoe has lead 94 laps
11 cars on the lead lap.

Rahal coming up on Doornbos. lets see if these teammates play well together…

Green flag pit stops starting. Wheldon in and out in a heart beat! Nice.

woah, that’s a crazy vibration on Marco’s car.

Kanaan in and out clean.
Marco in and out clean.
Mutoh in and out clean a little slow.
someone raced him off pitlane. Probably PT LOL! (could have been Wheldon… too many red/blue cars)

Briscoe coming in, get’s held up behind Wilson.
Briscoe out, Dixon out.

Kanaan on fire! Oh bless! the poor bastard can’t move very fast to get out. Strong crewman hoists him out. That had to hurt. Will also hurt in the championship. Will finish no better than 14th today.

commercial lap 140. (not side by side) I love that the fucking commercials are twice as loud as the race broadcast. fuck.

Townsend Bell won the Tire-iffic move of the race for Indy. Sweet! Go T-Bell! Too bad you’re not actually racing. :rolleyes, shakes head:

Back from commercial (lap 149) on board with E.J who looks like he’s out there all by himself.

ooh Marco up behind Moraes… this could get interesting… Mario gets the hell out of dodge, gets around Doornbos.

Oh Briscoe gets around Franchitti for the lead!! woot! Dixon and Dario dicing it out side by side! that was close. Briscoe fighting his way through traffic! Good time to go to a taped bumper with the Princess… then commercial of course, it’s not like we have tuned in to watch the racing or anything…

Nice big Geico commercial. Too bad they’re not “racing” this weekend.

I see the yellow flags, but because the whole fucking world is on commercial I have no idea why.

Debris… riiiiiiight….

Festival of pitting…(β„’ Pressdog)
ooh Briscoe got a little sideways, but holds on to it.
No change at the front.
Twinkletoes stays out.

The giant track zamboni cleaning up the marbles, with the hopes that this will lead to a final full stint of green flag racing.

Lap 172 Green… yellow… nevermind…

173 Green green green!

Hey Paul isn’t DFL anymore! woot! Come on, just for one race, give him the Princess’ car. Just for fun. huh? pretty please??

Briscoe pulling away. Patrick slingshoting around lapped traffic. ABC making a big deal of it. :mocks surprise:

Commercial. lap 179 Boost again. Barf.

We’re back 186, Looks like Briscoe got by Castroneves again while we were on break. Marco and Danica battling it out for 5th. not so much. Marco pulled away big time.

Viso slowing. Might have hit the wall. No yellow. He moves to the bottom of the track and into the pits.

PT is a moving chicane again…Dixon looked to take advantage, but no dice. Briscoe around cleanly.

Commercial lap ? no side by side.

HVM calls it a day. Viso’s day is done.

Sounds like Patrick and Matos got around Marco. Must have hit traffic.

Dixon gets around Briscoe for the lead. ugh.

Back from commercial, We see the replay. Briscoe got caught up with Scheckter, Dixon slingshots around like he’s being propelled by a giant elastic band!

19 laps to go…

Dixon is gone… a totally different timezone…
Briscoe trying to hold on to second. Franchitti is all over him like a fat kid on a smartee.

8 to go…
Dixon is flying. Good lord. I’m amazed he (Briscoe) didn’t get passed earlier.
Franchitti has Briscoe in his sights…
Rahal still holding on in 4th! good job buddy.

white flag…
Dixon’s to lose…
Franchitti all over Brisoe

checkers!
Dixon wins
Briscoe
Franchitti
Rahal
Patrick
Matos
Andretti
Mutoh

Not the most exciting race ever…

ok… gotta write this up properly… back later to discuss.

Edit: so I stayed put after the race as it was just easier to keep the thoughts flowing without packing up, walking home, booting up again, etc…
I need to find an A) cheaper B) more accommodating technically place to watch the races. Although, once we’re back on VERSUS (please God, soon!!) I’ll be back to watching via the super secret underground password protected lair which I cannot reveal.

I had one beer, an iced tea, a coffee and a chicken caesar salad. $30. WTF?!?!

For that price I should be rolling on the floor drunk off my ass and too full to eat until Tuesday.

Indy 500 2009…

the aftermath…

So… A week yesterday I headed off on “Meesh’s little Indy adventure”. My first race of the season. My first road trip. My first trip to racing mecca. I didn’t really know what to expect to be truthful. To be honest, in hindsight, I think I expected more…

I felt very disconnected from the whole experience for the most part. I still do. It’s all a blur. I was so busy leading up the weekend, I had no time to really get excited. Then I was so busy when I got home, I had no time to really bask in the moment. (hence the post race blog a fucking week later)

With deadlines looming, and the thought of getting back in that fucking car… (More on that later) I was distracted for much of the time I was there. Plus any time you’re at a new track it takes a few days to get acclimated. Well I didn’t have a few days. More like hours…

The first time I was near cars on track… Well, I wasn’t. That’s the problem. I got there on Saturday. The Lights cars and drivers were gone. The IndyCar drivers did the autograph session thing. (had my brief meet ups and hugs with my PR buds and drivers) Then off to the public driver’s meeting, then they were whisked off to the parade and never came back. So there I was at a race track with no fricken racing! Ugh.

Sunday was more of the same weirdness. I briefly caught up with Tags & Nelson. Saw Oriol again (ran into him Saturday night) Gave a EJ a good luck peck on each cheek. (how European) (thought bubble: you know the drill, 2 ft taller, 20yrs older…) Then headed off to the grid, as per my usual routine, only there was nothing usual about it.

There was no warm up that day. The drivers were no were near the pits, and I got shuffled off the grid a good HOUR before any drivers made it down there. WTF?! Here it was race day and I hadn’t seen Paul. That is unfathomable to me. Normally milling about with the drivers pre-race, here I was 4 floors above it all, hoping to catch what I needed with my camera zoomed to the max. The whole experience was like watching it on tv for the most part, only louder. Except in the media room, which was like a fucking morgue most of the time. Seriously. I’ve been to louder funerals. Actually, there was much chuckling and a few “oooh”‘s when Moraes said he was going to talk to Marco… and then some uncomfortable laughter when Samantha Lloyd revealed she was in labour, but not going anywhere. Then back to the dead silence until the crashes. Miller got loud for a bit after the race. He can always be counted on to stray from the status quo… πŸ˜‰ (that’s why I luvs him so…)

There were so many people, friends & acquaintances at the track that I didn’t get to see because I had both better access & shittier access! Ironic no?
I did meet up and hang withΒ  Pressdog (Bill) and MyNameIsIRL (Jeff) who I feel like I’ve known my entire life. I wish we had had the opportunity to hoist a couple of cold ones over the weekend, rather than just sit beside each other furiously typing LOL!

Trifecta of Word Butchers!
*photo credit unknown person behind Jeff’s camera!*

I was formally introduced to Curt Cavin as “not a stalker” hehe… (thanks Jeff) Had an interesting conversation with John O (always a highlight of the weekend) (I will bring your beer to the Glen I promise!!)

The list of people I didn’t get to see or meet is way too long, and if I start to think about it, I will just get angry. As my buds are all linking to their pics I’m like YOU WERE THERE TOO?!?!
To all of you that were there that I missed, maybe another race on the circuit this season?

Things I loved about the Speedway? Well, it’s the Speedway! My first impression was that it seemed smaller than I had pictured. Once you start walking around though, you realize how NOT small it is.

The IMS media centre staff was awesome, and accommodating, but not in a begrudging way.

The cafeteria staff make the most awesome sandwiches! (I somehow missed the hot meal both days LOL!)

Honestly, I could do without the yellow shirts. Well, ok, most were ok, but there were some that will now make me snarl at anyone wearing yellow for the next little while. And those fucking whistles… gah! I have a few rather unladylike suggestions of where they can store them until next May…

oh and thank you to the awesome Canon peeps who plopped a free cap on my head (on not in) and then cleaned and updated the firmware on my camera! Cool!

The race itself, meh…
again I’m not much of an oval fan, and when you watch the race from the vantage point I did, you don’t get the sense of the track. It was a straightaway. That’s it. A magnificent straightaway, mind you, but just a straightaway. Give me Vegas or Michigan or Chicago or Milwaukee. Actually, give me Cleveland or Edmonton. Where you can see the whole thing.

And It was predictable.
Red cars dominated. Fuel was saved. Young drivers crashed. Heartbreak for Kanaan & Meira. A Penske car won.

Now, in my most humble opinion, the WRONG Penske car won, but it was the one that would get the most media play, so that is how it played out. ABC darling “Twinkletoes Castroneves” is much more sellable to the ignorant masses than a true cinderfella story like Power, fighting for his career, winning the big race and putting Penske on the spot to field him for the season. I have to wonder if the tire guy was fired for his “mistake” or given a bonus… but I digress…

Paul finished top 10. Not where he wanted to be, but definitely a great result first race out of the gate this season with yet another new team. He again proved he deserves to be in a seat fulltime (more on that later)

When it comes down to it, this “event” is all about the pomp and less about the circumstances. This tradition and that tradition, spread out over way too many days. Unless you’re there for the entire month (god forbid) or at the very least the final week, you don’t get a sense of the build up and are left scratching your head afterwards.

I did have a funny conversation with my buddy Dean McNulty from the Toronto Sun. He asked me if now that I’ve been here, did I “get it”… did I get why the IRL won the “war”. I had to admit that I did. Like it or not, with TG having this ace up his sleeve, Champ Car was never going to “win” unless this race was part of their schedule. It’s too big. It’s too historic. Again, I’ve never seen so many people in one place at one time. Too bad they don’t come to the rest of the races… just sayin.

Back to the drive… NEVER AGAIN!! What the fuck was I thinking??? 8.5 hrs my ass. That’s obviously minus any other cars on the road and absolutely ZERO stopping. I overestimated the “joy” of the solitude and was bored out of my mind after 3hrs. Since I’m apparently out of favour with the folks I used to attend races with, there was no one to even offer to drive down for company.

I started logging my trip and my thoughts on my digital recorder. BRASSY! Once I figure out how to get them online, I’ll toss them up for a laugh. On the ride back I was decidedly less “brassy”. I mostly talked to myself to stay awake at that point. From here on out. (except for the Glen, cause that is a short drive) I will be flying. I get a lot of my work done on the plane. You can’t write while you’re driving! LOL!

Ok… My inaugural Indy 500 experience is officially in the books. I carried my media pass around in my bag for the week to use as “show & tell” for my friends. Most of them don’t get it, but they appreciate how happy racing makes me, so they put up with my enthusiastic retelling of my weekend exploits.

Here are some of the pics I took this weekend. Again, not the best selection as I didn’t have much to work with. But hey, it is what it is.

Indy 500 Saturday
Indy 500 – Race Day

Looking forward to the Glen.

Indy 500 *live race blog*

Ok so I’m late to the party, but that’s because I was out on the balcony of the media centre soaking it all in.

Lap 26, middle of the second caution…. here I am.

so far Moraes & Andretti the least ran out of talent

ooh… just looked at the t&s, Tracy gained two positions on the third restart! sweet!

ok… so my head is pounding. The lack of food, lack of sleep and rush of adrenadline is taking it’s toll. I’m finally sitting since the first post this morning at 8am or so. I’m exhausted and a little worried about the drive home. If any of you are here and looking for ride back to Toronto, or somewhere along the way, contact me!

Anyway, I’ve fluctuated between stoic, and angry, and giddy and overwhelmed all day. It’s all very surreal. More in a bit…

woah, while we were distracted by Bobby D kissing the wall, Brisco got around Franchitti.

Rahal hit the wall on lap 56. Jeff @mynameisirl has pointed out that all three candidates for the “youngest winner” are now out of the race.

Justin Wilson had a scary moment when the field came in to pit, spinning coming into his pit box. Luckily cooler heads prevailed and the other cars got bye him cleanly. The crew whipped him around and got him back out on the lead lap.

woah! Restart Briscoe is dropping like a stone , causing all kinds of chaos.

He was swallowed up by both Ganassi cars and Kanaan. Then he continued to go backwards, catching Helio, which allowed Matos and Patrick to get by. The traffic cluster turned into 4 wide down the front stretch with sparks and dust flying everywhere.

It’s very funny, we all jump up and run to the windows when something happens on track or when the field comes in to pit.

Wilson has recovered nicely from the pitlane brainfade. Back up to 15th.

PT holding his own. Team is saving fuel until mid point of the race. He and T-Bell will pair up and try to draft through traffic.

Poor E.J…. I don’t know what has happened to my little sparkplug, but he is not the same driver as last year. I wonder if they did any development over the winter, cause they can’t seem to keep up with the other transition teams.

4th caution. Davey Hamilton into the wall. Lap 83. 😦

Field will close up again and pit.

Race off pitrow: FROchitti, Dixon, Kanaan, Helio, Matoes

True to form, the driver out front on the restart get’s inhaled by P2. In this case, Dixon inhaled Franchitti.

Servia got around Tracy, and Philippe got squiggly and nearly collected a few people.

Also true to form, we are suffering through Marty Reid and Scott Goodyear and their “fanica”dom… snore…

WOAH! TK into the wall. Hard! Something snapped on that car and he was “just a passenger” Caution 5 kids.

Festival of pitting! Everyone came in for tires.
Dixon, Franchitti, Power (!!), Matoes, Twinkeltoes…

*woah! Princess Prozac runs out of talent during the pits. Giving the broadcast team yet another reason to talk about her. ( I swear they mention her every 10 minutes) (I’m also convinced that they become intimately familiar with their anatomy at night while staring at the posters of her on their ceilings… )

*ok… surreal moment… I’m sitting here beside Jeff (My Name is IRL) with P-dog on the other side of him. We are all frantically typing. Sharing quips every once in a while. We would be the three least fun people to watch a race with…

Aww… poor Cookie boy and RHL. Fuel pick up problems.

LOL! Wonder if they’ve told Alex Lloyd that his wife is having contractions 10 minutes apart! Funny, cause Heather Carpenter was also apparently 10 minutes apart on qualifying day. Must be the adrenaline. Very cool though.

and send in the clown cars! Nelson into the wall, FROchitti epic fail on pitlane, Car-B-Cue in Vitor Meira’s pit box and giant sham wows!!

Big winner off pit row PT!!! 4th!! baby!

Once again, P1 sitting duck. Helio Gets by Dixon. Wheldon gets by Tracy. Then T-Bell pulls a banzai move on Tracy. Not very teammate like…

Briscoe jumped the start, got sent behind the Princess by race control.

Tracy is dropping like a stone. Something is not right with that car since the last pit stop.

Power around Dixon for second (!) Wouldn’t that just put penske in a pit of a pickle if Power wins this thing?

whoops! Justin does his second 360 of the day! and hits the wall. (rather balletic of him actually) The slight tap of the nose makes the ass end hit rather light… Poor bugger.

Power’s crew FUCKS UP his potential lead/win. Power for SURE would have inhaled Helio on the restart. I call BULLSHIT!

Helio, Briscoe, Wheldon, Patrick, Power, Bell. on the restart with 33 to go.

Matos came in and did another “top off” which is just confusing me.

Well as Marty just mentioned “fuel is no longer an issue” as Matos gets into Vitor and they both hit the wall hard. Then in the most surreal, incredible accident, Vitor’s car, after making hard front contact, spun around backwards and then his car skidded backwards, on it’s side, along the entire corner wall… precariously teetering. It is an absolute miracle that that car landed right side up. Took a while to get both drivers out of their cars. Matos got out under his own steam, but limping. Vitor was taken way on a stretcher. No word on his condition.

Restart after an endless break, Helio gets a massive jump on the start and is running away with this.

I am going to head outside and catch the finish.

Race Day!!

So the media centre is filling up with the creme de la creme of motorsports media… and a few of us hacks are here as well.

I total clusterfuck leaving for the track this morning has put me two hrs behind on my list of things to do this morning, so I’m running out the door and likely won’t be back to my computer till race time.

I’m kinda pumped about today, or as P-Dog would say “geeked” … (more on HIM later… ) πŸ˜‰

Happy Race day kids!!!

hump day… week… month…

year…

sorry… No rants tonight. No clever essays, no interviews, or stats or predictions.
Just a blog.
All this was ever meant to be.
All it ended up being after all.
“Don’t believe the hype” she said. Should have listened to myself…
Moving on…

Feeling a little ovewhelmed (my own fault), and overworked (my own doing!) and under prepared (where did the month go??)and undeserved (…)Β  and… and…. and…
But you know what? I’m going to Indy!

Yup, that’s right fuckers. Little ol’ fly under the radar, not good enough is hopping in a car on Friday afternoon and driving for 9hrs to take in the “greatest testicle er spectacle in racing”
All of the hours I put in, appreciated or not, finally paid off and I was invited to the party.
I don’t know why I’ve kept it quiet so long. Guess I didn’t want to jinx it or something. Or maybe it just doesn’t seem real yet.

I’ll be spending more time on the road than actually at track, but I’ll be there damnit, supporting my boys.
My main man PT, who’s finally getting just an iota of the respect he deserves.
No matter where he finishes this weekend he is a winner in my book! Always will be!
Looking forward to seeing Patti and Allen and embarrassing my bud C.J! (Did I ever mention Paul’s son & I share a birthday? How’s that for uber fandom?)

Then I’ll throw some good luck vibes down pitlane to mon ami Tags! (Maybe counter act the Brazilian cornholing karma gods…)

Here’s the thing… The problem with being friends with drivers & crew members is the highs and lows you share with them on a deeply personal level. When Tags got caught out last weekend my heart absolutely broke for him (and Bronte and Sonja and Karina…) I’ve been there with him at the track, and off the track, and in the car driving home from the track. I know how passionate & emotional he is. I knew that look in his eyes when the camera focused on him as the “iron hand of justice” told him his time had run out.

When the team “made the call” I was torn between my glee for him and my heartbreak for Junky & Diana. (of course I knew last week that he was racing with AIM in Grand AM (see Jameson! I can keep a secret!) so that cushioned the blow a little. )

I know… “It’s racing” But I also know how hard I cried in Long Beach last year at the injustice of it all when it was aimed at Paul. None of these guys or gals deserve to be tossed aside or used like pawns in the chess game that is racing economics.

At some point I’m gonna give my little spark plug E.J. a big squeeze and ask him what the fuck happened to him over the winter! Where’s my bad boy??? Where’s the fire?? Come back!! (oh and I’ll have inappropriate thoughts for a woman of my age about a boy his age… but I digress)

Hopefully I’m finally going to meet Sarah! Yay! I have so much respect for what she’s come through to be here.

And of course I’m finally going to make the aquaintance of the creme de la creme of the blogging crew. Hope I don’t stink up the joint…

All that said, I will have about 10 mins to accomplish all of that, while I will be trying to write all the coverage for the site, will be hounded constantly by the euro team for info and interviews for them, and will be back on the road post race at around 3am to drive back to Toronto.

Will it be worth it? The fact that Paul’s on track is worth it alone. All the other stuff is gravy.

It seems every season there is something taken away from me that makes me regroup and rethink this whole stinkin racing thing. Something is amiss this year. I hate that this is my first event of the season. I hate that I have about 10 mins to enjoy it. I hate that the people who I would have shared it all with a year ago decided I was no longer relevant personally or professionally. I hate that that even matters to me. But it does. :shrug:

I think the thing I’m most looking forward to (besides Paul tearing it up baby!) is the 8 -9hrs of solitude on the way there and on the way back. Maybe I’ll keep my digi recorder on the seat beside me just incase I’m inspired. (especially on the way home)

and with that long winded post about nothing in particular, I’m going to bed. Trying to get as much quality sleep as I can before the weekend as I doubt I’ll get any then.