Notes taken during the NBC Sports Broadcast of the Itaipava Sao Paulo Indy 300, Streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil, May 5, 2013.
pressdog beer of the race is an Anchor Steam like product home brewed by my friend Keith. DRINK, ye BASTARDS.
Cue the hat (running order at the top). Yo to my brothers and sisters in the B Unit (graphics creating unit). Maybe I'll see you at Indy.
Trackside Online starting lineup. Trackside Online is a reader-supported, subscription IndyCar news service that generates original content from all IndyCar races and most league-sponsored tests. Trackside kingpin Joe was in Brazil emailing out the tasty news updates all weekend. For just $22 per calendar year, it's an insane bargain for the IndyCar fan. Be like the pdog and subscribe today.
1. (1) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Dallara-Chevy, 01:20.4312 (113.508)
2. (5) EJ Viso, Dallara-Chevy, 01:20.7380 (113.077)
3. (10) Dario Franchitti, Dallara-Honda, 01:20.8922 (112.861)
4. (11) Tony Kanaan, Dallara-Chevy, 01:20.9812 (112.737)
5. (27) James Hinchcliffe, Dallara-Chevy, 01:20.9893 (112.726)
6. (9) Scott Dixon, Dallara-Honda, 01:21.1183 (112.547)
7. (7) Sebastien Bourdais, Dallara-Chevy, 01:20.8210 (112.961)
8. (78) Simona de Silvestro, Dallara-Chevy, 01:20.9390 (112.796)
9. (19) Justin Wilson, Dallara-Honda, 01:21.0570 (112.632)
10. (25) Marco Andretti, Dallara-Chevy, 01:21.1716 (112.473)
11. (4) JR Hildebrand, Dallara-Chevy, 01:21.2961 (112.301)
12. (14) Takuma Sato, Dallara-Honda, 01:21.3618 (112.210)
13. (22) Oriol Servia, Dallara-Chevy, 01:21.7963 (111.614)
14. (20) Ed Carpenter, Dallara-Chevy, 01:24.0203 (108.659)
15. (98) Alex Tagliani, Dallara-Honda, 01:21.8636 (111.522)
16. (18) Ana Beatriz, Dallara-Honda, 01:24.8864 (107.551)
17. (83) Charlie Kimball, Dallara-Honda, 01:22.2482 (111.001)
18. (3) Helio Castroneves, Dallara-Chevy, 01:25.1734 (107.188)
19. (15) Graham Rahal, Dallara-Honda, 01:22.2998 (110.931)
20. (6) Sebastian Saavedra, Dallara-Chevy, 04:00.2612 (37.999)
21. (55) Tristan Vautier, Dallara-Honda, 03:20.5417 (45.525)
22. (12) Will Power, Dallara-Chevy, 04:05.5886 (37.174)
23. (67) Josef Newgarden, Dallara-Honda, No Time (No Speed)
24. (77) Simon Pagenaud, Dallara-Honda, 04:23.1097 (34.699)
25. (16) James Jakes, Dallara-Honda, No Time (No Speed)
Power and Helio are buried in the lineup because they didn't get out for a fast qualifying lap before the red flag came out in their qual group. Time ran out in the session under red so they were screwed.
Kevin Lee is the lone pit reporter on the ground in Brazil. Everyone else is working this race from the booth (likely in Indy). Jon Beekhuis makes a triumphant return (cue fanfare) to the booth with Townsend Bell and Leigh Diffey.
Let's light this candle ... we're GREEN.
We're through Turn 1 pretty cleanly. Viso got inhaled by Dario and then TK at the start. Crowd in Brazil looks good. Bia gets massive air. Replay of power popping into Rahal.
Lap 6 -- yellow yellow yellow. Bia is toast on the track. That's three mechanical DNFs for Bia and Dale Coyne in four races. Not so good.
Festival of pitting. Jon tells me everyone but the top four pit and there is some strategy discussion. Viewing enhanced. BIG challenge on a twisty is keeping the viewers abreast (Beavis snicker) of the strategy, and Jon is all about the strategery.
A relatively short two-lap yellow to haul the Dale Coyne Car carcass off and ...
Lap 9 -- GREEN. Kanaan inhales Dario to go P2. Crowd begins a festive group samba.
Lap 10 -- TK overtakes RHR for the lead ... in Brazil. Crowd screams DRINK, ye BASTARDS in Portuguese as he comes through the Sambadrome.
TK, RHR, Dario, Hinch, Viso, Dixon, Wilson, Sato, Simona, Hildebrand.
Lap 17 -- Lockstep up front. EJ Viso gets overtaken a couple times and Simona moves from P9 to P8 and Power is up 11 spots in 16 laps to P11 before we have ..
Lap 19 -- Yellow yellow yellow. Power's car is en fuego! Literally. We got FIRE in the right rear. Power decides to pull over and maybe eject, eject eject. Scrambles out and the fire guys are there pretty quickly. Theorizing it was oil/combustible on the exhaust header-ish area.
That cues a festival of pitting. (Pitting is not noted on my lap chart, so I'm going strictly from my notes, which were made while I was having beer, so grain of salt, please.)
Looks like Bourdais, Tag, JoeNew (Newgarden), Helio, Jakes, Pagenaud, Chuck Kimball and Saavedra stayed out. RHR and Dixon both beat TK out of the pits, so RHR will be the leader when we cycle through, unless the circus music blares again.
Power tells Kevin it just busted into flames. No warning. Kevin asks about some banging during restarts, etc. and Power says just some racing deals.
Lap 23 -- green.
Cue the circus music! into turn 1. FUBAR with a festival of spinning cars. Rahal and Ed involved. Replay ... four wide, then tears. A tiny limo pulls up and 19 clowns get out and start playing "Lady of Spain" on the (dreaded) accordion (effect). We'll get all that sorted and wait for the replays.
Lap 26 -- Green. Turn 1 Helio gets punted again. Crew uses binoculars to see if his car has a "kick me" sticker on the back wing. Sato passed Dixon and Kimball on the restart for P6. Replays of the start. Somebody enhances my viewing by saying ACCORDION EFFECT (DRINK, ye BASTARDS.)
Lap 30 -- talk breaks out about saving fuel. Front runners will have to pit soon. They're hoping hard it stays green, they pit, then it goes yellow. I think.
Bourdais, JoeNew, RHR, Pagenaud, Sato, Chuck, TK, Dixon, Dario, Hildebrand
Lap 33(ish) -- Bourdais pits from the lead. JoeNew goes with him. Sato dives inside RHR, they touch and he's clear on Lap 34. Sato leads. TK up to P3. Experiencing some drag with the Hopes of a Nation resting on his car. Bourdais missed his pit! Dude. I think he had to go through and try again, but maybe he had to stop and get pushed back. Not sure, but I heard Circus Music in the background.
Jon enhances viewing in through here by talking about the differing fuel strategies, etc. Not much tire discussion a'tall so far. Larry Foyt gets more air. With the win last week and Sato leading today Larry Foyt has gotten more air in the last two weeks than the last 10 years combined. Talking to Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing on camera during the race is the FINAL FRONTIER. Meanwhile, the usually ever-present Ganassi ("doing good, feeling good, Dario/Scott is a good driver, see how it plays out") and Penske are getting zero air. Human sacrifice ... dogs and cats ... living together ... MASS HYSTERIA.
Lap 37 -- Ruh roe, Rahal is partially dewinged. Missing part of front wing. We're yellow yellow yellow for the fourth time. Sato DIVES into the pits which stay open. Merry Christmas! Yellow before he hit pit entrance and the pits stayed open so he could dive in before the cars formed up in a pack and thereby lose fewer positions. Beauxford T. Justice's (race controller Beaux Barfield) approach to keeping pits open when possible even as the course goes yellow was implemented last year. It's a good policy, so insert my nod of approval here.
Replay ... Rahal just misjudged the chicane in Turn 1(ish) and bashed the tires and then ricocheted into the WALL.
Lap 39 -- GREEN. Marco under Servia who does not throw a block party, yet says "um, no." TWO WIDE through some kinky sections (bow chica bow bow) and Servia prevails. Killer driving from both of them. Amazing they can do that while flipping each other off (Kidding! Just my imagined animosity. I don't think any actually exists.)
Lap 40 -- Cue the circus music! We got a car park on the track. Five cars parked. Hey, isn't that Myron Floren in the stands? A one-a and a two-a ... From the replays it looks like Bourdais booted Castroneves in the rear and that banked him into Pagenaud and then we got blockage. A tiny ambulance pulls up and 19 clowns jump out and start doing a street-sized angioplasty. Helio's right rear is shredded and he hobbles back to the pit.
Lap 44 -- Green. TK around RHR and ... he leads. Soccer stadium-level crowd roar. Hold the phone, because on ...
Lap 46 Marco kills the buzz by inhaling TK for the lead. Sha. Marco was P5 on Lap 44 and now is P1 on Lap 46. Festival of Inhalation there.TK is dropping like a rock for some reason.
Lap 50 -- Marco, Servia, Dario, Viso, TK, Hinch, Wilson, Simona, Jakes, Tagliani.
TK is slowing. He's toast for some reason. Crawling along and finally stops so we're yellow yellow yellow. Not sure what is up with Tony. He don't look happy though, based on the gestures and head shakes. Turns out he ran out of gas. WTF? Ran out of gas? Someone screwed the pooch there. Not sure who it was though. When the track goes yellow and pits stay open everyone dives into the pits.
Lap 54 (of 75) -- green.
Lap 56 -- yellow yellow yellow. Wilson into the barrier in turn 1. Dude. Yellow number 7. The clowns are on strike due to excessive hours.
Lap 59 -- Green.
Lap 60 -- Sato, JoeNew, Pagenaud, Hinch, Servia, Marco, RHR, Dario, Viso, Tag. Some lock step breaks out here for a few laps. Probably strategizing and saving it for the last 10.
Lap 65 -- JoeNew is looking, looking at Sato. Some discussion of Newgarden's pit wanting him to think points. Joe ain't thinking points right here. He's thinking P1. I hope he's thinking "don't trash it making some goofy move."
Lap 66 -- MEANWHILE, back in the pack, Hinch has stealthed up to P3. Cloaking device is deployed. Joe is all over the back of Sato.
Lap 67 -- Newgarden takes a run ... NO. Sato is Mr. Plausible Deniability when it comes to Block Parties. It's like an art form with him. He changes his position by 43% of a car width a lot of times, just enough to say "I wasn't attempting to block, your honor."
Lap 70 -- Newgarden has a big run. Sato says ... Welcome to the Block Party. Overhead replay. Ah, yeah, he moved in reaction to Newgarden (in my view). Booth guys Jon and Townsend agree with me (or I agree with them, whichever you prefer). If the rule is .. proactive moves: "legal defending," reactive moves: "block." I gotta go with block there. If you hate the rule, that seems to be another discussion. But, again, Sato is the master of the subtle, hard-to-call-that block. "Track was bending there, just holding my line .." Uh huh.
Race control is reviewing the aforementioned situation.
That might have cooked Joe's tires OR slowed him enough that Hinch is now CLEAR, and into P2.
Lap 72 (ish) -- Sato says Welcome to the Block Party for Hinch as well. Everyone's invited. Another reactive move. Beauxford T. Justice proclaims the Sato was NOT GUILTY of a Sato Swerve on Newgarden. I would imagine he's going with "reasonable doubt" there. Sato ... you Swerve Master. Pretty sure the instant case (court lingo) of Sato "adjusting his line" will be found to be NOT GUILTY as well.
HOLY LARGE ATTACHMENTS. While Hinch and Sato were knife fighting, JoeNew dives inside both and we're briefly three wide. Sarah Fisher is probably on oxygen right now with that move. This Newgarden kid, he ain't driving for third, bitches, but Joe can't make it stick and has to back off to P3.
Lap 74 -- Sato is fully defensive. Launch the Alert 5 aircraft. Hinch makes another run. Booth guys "Sato chops him again."
Lap 75 -- Hinch says "THE EFF YOU SAY" (I imagine, anyway) and makes another run on Swervy McSwerverson. Sato plays defense but dirt tracks out of the last corner.
Hinch dives in there like a coked up RAPTOR and is under and CLEAR. Effin' A, Cotton, effin' A! Cotton needs new shorts because Hinch has INHALED Sato on the last turn of the race and ... wins that shit.
Booth guys are peeing themselves. Replays ... when Sato (throat clear) defended, he couldn't make the corner, got a little loose, and Hinch was close enough to over-under. The forces of justice win. Of course JoeNew got screwed five laps earlier ...
(Insert screams of "DEFENDING IS AWESOME AND JUST GET OVER THE BLOCKING SHIT, ASSHOLE" here. I always calls 'em like I sees 'em. Also got some Twitter hate yesterday for my "fawning" over female racecar drivers. I'm a poor old guy who fawns over drivers with vaginas, allegedly. Huh. I had no idea. I also got a long ass memory, FYI.)
Race control says Sato is NOT GUILTY of any infractions. Thus ruleth Beauxford T. Justice. Court adjourned (bitches).
Bell says "that sets the tone for the rest of the season. It's going to be a knife fight." I agree. Although Sato should give subtle reactive move seminars to help the rest of the drivers create that reasonable doubt needed to be found NOT GUILTY.
Hinch is pumped, of course. Tells Kevin Sato was "defending inside pretty well, almost too well."
Here's what Hinch said when asked in the post-race news conference.
Q.Hinch, was that blocking there in the end? And also comment on the hard-fought end of the race.
JAMES HINCHCLIFFE: At the time I thought it was a block, because my hand didn't fly off the steering wheel on its own. It is tough here. The back straight kind of having a snaking sort of feature to it, it is tough to judge where the other car is.
But I felt that I got out early enough. I had to hit the brakes or I was going into the guardrail. That's something that we have to talk about, to look at certainly.
But other than that, I mean, he was doing a very good job making the car wide. You have to give Firestone so much credit for these great races we're having, because you have the reds, the blacks that go off at different levels for different teams and drivers. That's really what we saw.
I was able to have a little bit more tire I think under me at the end of the race, was able to get around Pagenaud, Newgarden, and we were quicker than Takuma, but getting by him was a different story.
Yeah, it was great racing. That's what the fans want to see. That's what we want to do, have a street track that allows you to do that, the long straightaway and the hairpin in the corner. It was a lot of fun at the end of the day.
Kevin asks Sato if he was worried he'd get flagged for blocking. "You could say that" but he says he didn't cross the line and "we had such fun." Marco ends up P3 and JoeNew fades to P5.
Finishing order ...
IZOD IndyCar Series Itaipava Sao Paulo Indy 300
SAO PAULO - Results Sunday of the Itaipava Sao Paulo Indy 300 IZOD IndyCar Series event on the 2.536 mile Sao Paulo Street Circuit, with order of finish, starting position in parentheses, driver, chassis-engine, laps completed and reason out (if any):
1. (5) James Hinchcliffe, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
2. (12) Takuma Sato, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
3. (10) Marco Andretti, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
4. (13) Oriol Servia, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
5. (25) Josef Newgarden, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
6. (2) EJ Viso, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
7. (3) Dario Franchitti, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
8. (8) Simona de Silvestro, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
9. (23) Simon Pagenaud, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
10. (17) Charlie Kimball, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
11. (1) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
12. (15) Alex Tagliani, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
13. (18) Helio Castroneves, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
14. (7) Sebastien Bourdais, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
15. (11) JR Hildebrand, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
16. (21) Tristan Vautier, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
17. (24) James Jakes, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
18. (6) Scott Dixon, Dallara-Honda, 75, Running
19. (20) Sebastian Saavedra, Dallara-Chevy, 75, Running
20. (9) Justin Wilson, Dallara-Honda, 73, Running
21. (4) Tony Kanaan, Dallara-Chevy, 72, Running
22. (19) Graham Rahal, Dallara-Honda, 71, Running
23. (14) Ed Carpenter, Dallara-Chevy, 71, Running
24. (22) Will Power, Dallara-Chevy, 17, Mechanical
25. (16) Ana Beatriz, Dallara-Honda, 6, Mechanical
Winners average speed: 88.070
Time of Race: 02:09:34.7383
Margin of victory: 0.3463 of a second
Cautions: 7 for 19 laps
Lead changes: 9 among 7 drivers
Hunter-Reay 1 - 9
Kanaan 10 - 20
Bourdais 21 - 33
Sato 34 - 37
Hunter-Reay 38 - 44
Andretti 46 - 52
Hildebrand 53 - 56
Sato 57 - 74
Point Standings: Sato 136, Andretti 123, Castroneves 116, Hinchcliffe 112, Dixon 101, Hunter-Reay 94, Wilson 91, Servia 89, de Silvestro 86, Kimball 80.
Lap chart, finishing order, post-race transcript all courtesty of IndyCar PR.
Post race we had some excellent Twitter based emotion from the Target Twins ...
Scott Dixon (@ScottDixon9) Quick look at twitter... Sounds like race control had to leave early to catch a flight... Can't wait to hear the excuses!
Dario Franchitti (@DarioFranchitti) Maybe the 14 had a broken steering rack that caused him to weave across the whole width of the straight multiple times?
Love the emotions (including those I don't agree with). I'll have a bit more on the Brazil race soon (actually read it here). For now:
Highlights posted by IndyCar ...
That's it from Brazil. Next race is the ... Indy 500. Sunday, May 26, noon Eastern on ABC. I'll be there in person for the race. I'm girding my loins even now.
May 5 was the 8th anniversary of this iteration of pressdog.com, so thanks to everyone who created the 1.38 milion page views so far. pressdog.com in some form goes back to 1996, but it's only been racing focused since 2005. Thanks for reading the race notes. I always enjoy the comments, even the ones that are going to say "You're full of SHIT, creepy old guy who fawns over women."