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Thread: Any predictions for racing "action" at this year's 500?

  1. #1
    Dirt biker/carp hunter Stick500's Avatar
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    Any predictions for racing "action" at this year's 500?

    I think we're all aware that the "action" at this year's 500 is certainly the biggest question mark since the '97 race.

    We've been speculating here on TF about qualifying speeds and #s of cars for quite some time, but what's important for the folks in the stands and watching on the tube after the green falls is if they are going to see a true "Greatest Spectacle in Racing".

    By "action" I mean where and when can they pass, how hard the cars are to drive for 500 miles (loose, tight, any lifting?), tire wear (causing cautions every 20 laps when someone drifts high as we have seen in the recent past), number of mechanical failures, packs of cars or strung out, etc.

    I have no idea, but I'll start off the discussion with my best guess.

    I feel with the lower speeds and plenty of downforce, the cars will be easier to drive lap after lap during the race than in years past. The tires won't be wearing as quickly and we won't be getting lame-o cautions every 20 laps when someone drifts high.

    Because the cars are easier to drive, there will be several nice packs of cars running close and passing (drafting) quite often. The 500 "action" (hopefully!!) may end up looking like a typical Freedom 100, which would be awesome!

    3-wide going into T1 may be attempted a few times. On the downside, there will be more mechanical failures and there may even be some catastrophic ones that lay down oil and cause a few wrecks. With the cars easier to drive, there may be less one-car wrecks, but perhaps more tangles while battling for position. We may even see some bold blocking on the straights if the competition is close enough.

    Oh what the heck, I may be full of baloney and just the opposite of what I've suggested here may happen, but it's kinda to fun to see who may be able to predict what kind of race it will be.
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  2. #2
    Indy since '66 kevin99's Avatar
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    It's only 30 days until the GSIR and only 8 days until I stagger around the track in the mini.

    I don't look for much difference this year than last in the action, except for the constant lapping of the poor souls driving the Lotus cars.
    Last edited by kevin99; 04-27-2012 at 08:09 AM.
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    Registered User Ydawg's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevin99 View Post
    It's only 30 days until the GSIR and onl;y 8 days until I stagger around the track in the mini.

    I don't look for much difference this year than last in the action, except for the constant lapping of the poor souls driving the Lotus cars.
    The the biggest factor (besides the bad marbles) contributing to the lack
    of passing at Indy after restarts is the fact that we don't have several cars
    running around off pace like we used to. This year - we may very well
    have 10-12 cars running slower creating real traffic situations. Also - we
    need some long greens to setup those traffic situations - there have been
    a couple of races in the last 5 years where it is 20 laps of green ... then yellow -
    20 laps of green ... then yellow. We need long green periods and real differentials
    in car speed = traffic and great dicing.

  4. #4
    Zoidy want balloon! Ren Butler's Avatar
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    Thanks for the topic, because this is the question I've been wondering about for weeks now...
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  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Ydawg View Post
    The the biggest factor (besides the bad marbles) contributing to the lack
    of passing at Indy after restarts is the fact that we don't have several cars
    running around off pace like we used to. This year - we may very well
    have 10-12 cars running slower creating real traffic situations. Also - we
    need some long greens to setup those traffic situations - there have been
    a couple of races in the last 5 years where it is 20 laps of green ... then yellow -
    20 laps of green ... then yellow. We need long green periods and real differentials
    in car speed = traffic and great dicing.
    You bring up a great point that I personally never really considered.

  6. #6
    Insider mdkiel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stick500 View Post


    Because the cars are easier to drive, there will be several nice packs of cars running close and passing (drafting) quite often. The 500 "action" (hopefully!!) may end up looking like a typical Freedom 100, which would be awesome!
    Freedom 100 type action would be good for me, those races are usually competitve and fun to watch.

    :izod2
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  7. #7
    Registered User hoosiewing's Avatar
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    I just don't feel optimistic about it. the car overall seems to be glued to the pavement like the last one, and with one groove, that means put it on cruise control (floored) and count down laps. hopefully i'm wrong, but it looks like they simply polished the IR-03 ****, but its still a ****.

  8. #8
    Insider Unzerdog's Avatar
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    I haven't a clue what this car will do. I can't wait to find out.
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat" -Teddy Roosevelt

  9. #9
    "h" is my middle name PHJIndy's Avatar
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    I predict there will be "action" in the 2012 Indianapolis 500.
    Have a very blessed day!

  10. #10
    Registered User Buckeye Bullitt 93's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mdkiel View Post
    Freedom 100 type action would be good for me, those races are usually competitve and fun to watch.

    :izod2
    I agree, the Freedom 100 really is a good race to watch when they don't have long extended caution periods.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Buckeye Bullitt 93 View Post
    I agree, the Freedom 100 really is a good race to watch when they don't have long extended caution periods.
    Great until someone lands in the 8th row.

  12. #12
    Insider mdkiel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Airbox View Post
    Great until someone lands in the 8th row.
    Hopefully with the superior talent of Indy 500 drivers they can race competitively and in close quarters without that happening.

    :izod2

  13. #13
    Funk Master/King Grover's Avatar
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    Has anyone driven in the wake of another car at speed in speedway trim? While I was out there at practice, guys bailed out whenever they closed up on another car...

    Not posting this to feed the doom and gloom guys, but I think this current unknown will be the key to the action.

  14. #14
    Insider mdkiel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grover View Post
    Has anyone driven in the wake of another car at speed in speedway trim? While I was out there at practice, guys bailed out whenever they closed up on another car...

    Not posting this to feed the doom and gloom guys, but I think this current unknown will be the key to the action.
    Sure it is, and not to pick on you Grover but this is generally where the Internet goes into hysteria and assumes the sky is falling.

    This is a new car. There will be unknowns -- the trick for us is to wait and find out what happens as they work to improve them.

  15. #15
    Funk Master/King Grover's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mdkiel View Post
    Sure it is, and not to pick on you Grover but this is generally where the Internet goes into hysteria and assumes the sky is falling.

    This is a new car. There will be unknowns -- the trick for us is to wait and find out what happens as they work to improve them.
    Yeah, I don't want to read about the sky falling...

    ...but six pages of bitching about TPTB reducing our MONTH of May where the teams could really test their machinery would ROCK!

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Grover View Post
    Has anyone driven in the wake of another car at speed in speedway trim? While I was out there at practice, guys bailed out whenever they closed up on another car...

    Not posting this to feed the doom and gloom guys, but I think this current unknown will be the key to the action.
    Marco did, he said there was a lot of turbulence.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Airbox View Post
    Marco did, he said there was a lot of turbulence.
    I wouldn't judge by what Marco has to say. He experiecnes turbulence when he gets out of bed in the morning. In the race car, he's just skeered.

    Lots of unknowns for race day. New car and new motor will undoubtedly lead to failures which have not been forseen--sort of like when a team loses both cars due to a minor part breaking. This could ripple through the field and will likely be the biggest cause of position changes. The racing itself is likely to be pedal to the floor and steer. Passing might not not be prevelant. Pit strategy and fuel mileage might beneifit the smart teams like a Penkse who will undoubtedly have done lots of testing to determine how to skip a stop or otherwise do an out of sequence stop to benefit later in the race. I'm guessing it won't be the fastest car that wins; it will be the smartest.

    And you know the lady is going to add an unknown twist which will play into the outcome of the race.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grover View Post
    Has anyone driven in the wake of another car at speed in speedway trim? While I was out there at practice, guys bailed out whenever they closed up on another car...

    Not posting this to feed the doom and gloom guys, but I think this current unknown will be the key to the action.
    Marco did. Didn't like how it felt. So based off of that I am less optimistic than others here.

    I think that kind of like the road courses though, the extended bodywork will let the drivers run closer without fearing wheel locking
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  19. #19
    Resident of the NE Vista Mario4ever's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by THE BEAR View Post
    I wouldn't judge by what Marco has to say. He experiecnes turbulence when he gets out of bed in the morning. In the race car, he's just skeered.

    Lots of unknowns for race day. New car and new motor will undoubtedly lead to failures which have not been forseen--sort of like when a team loses both cars due to a minor part breaking. This could ripple through the field and will likely be the biggest cause of position changes. The racing itself is likely to be pedal to the floor and steer. Passing might not not be prevelant. Pit strategy and fuel mileage might beneifit the smart teams like a Penkse who will undoubtedly have done lots of testing to determine how to skip a stop or otherwise do an out of sequence stop to benefit later in the race. I'm guessing it won't be the fastest car that wins; it will be the smartest.

    And you know the lady is going to add an unknown twist which will play into the outcome of the race.
    That may have been true during his first season but he doesn't look scared on the ovals anymore. In fact, he's proven to be quite quick at Indy so I think his opinion has merit.
    "If you wait, all that happens is you get older" - Mario Andretti

  20. #20
    Quote Originally Posted by THE BEAR View Post
    I wouldn't judge by what Marco has to say. He experiecnes turbulence when he gets out of bed in the morning. In the race car, he's just skeered.

    Lots of unknowns for race day. New car and new motor will undoubtedly lead to failures which have not been forseen--sort of like when a team loses both cars due to a minor part breaking. This could ripple through the field and will likely be the biggest cause of position changes. The racing itself is likely to be pedal to the floor and steer. Passing might not not be prevelant. Pit strategy and fuel mileage might beneifit the smart teams like a Penkse who will undoubtedly have done lots of testing to determine how to skip a stop or otherwise do an out of sequence stop to benefit later in the race. I'm guessing it won't be the fastest car that wins; it will be the smartest.

    And you know the lady is going to add an unknown twist which will play into the outcome of the race.
    Agreed, this is why it won't be pack racing, which is a good thing. It will be a great race.

  21. #21
    Former F1 Enthusiast
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Airbox View Post
    Marco did, he said there was a lot of turbulence.
    But on the other hand Castroneves said the car drafted well, and I thought that a big part of the new design was to cut down on turbulence behind the car.

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