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« Notes Taken During the 2012 IndyCar Race at Milwaukee | Main | Katherine Legge on 2012, Taking Criticism and Being The Mentor »

June 17, 2012


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IMO Dixon was the reason the first restart was called off. That deserves a penalty because you should not be the one to cause a restart being called off. And his crew chief's excuse that (paraphrasing) "everyone does it" is not a proper excuse, at least according to my mother. So I think the call--even messed up--was a good one and I hope they develop some consistently enforced rules and penalties for all races because the only thing presently consistent about restarts is that they suck.


I love racing, and think IndyCar is still the coolest game in town. But...Drivers are the ones doing the racing, including driving the restarts. Race Control, by very definition of their name, control that racing. These are all very smart, very talented, very experienced people. Bottom line: if they really want restarts, rules, and the overall product to be better, they can make it better. There's not a competitor in any field of endevour who won't take any rule to its limit, that simply seems to be our human nature. If the rules aren't getting the results that make the races grade "A," then the leaders (whether by title or personality) among the smart, talented, experienced group, can - and in the name of making the sport the best it can be - should step up. And that's my Father's Day wish for the sport I so enjoy being a fan of.


I agree with what you say about both Dixon and Dario. Dixie has really grown on me and though I haven't been a fan of Dario I sat in on the front row presser on Friday and saw a really different side of him. He was very thoughtful, funny at times and accommodating. Plus he looked like he had been hit by a truck -- Festival of Stress that afternoon. I think if people saw more of that from him they would see him in a different light. As it stands he might be the least-popular 3-time Indy 500 winner of all time. I couldn't believe the stuff that was yelled at him from the stands yesterday.


I really wish Barfield hadn't apologized. Indycar starts and restarts are awful. I'm still waiting to hear a driver apologize for the fact Indycar's "fastest drivers in the world" can't do a restart better than a Camping World Truck driver. NASCAR manages in all three series to do better. Sprint cars and short tracks EVERYWHERE do better. And in those places, the start would get waved off and the driver would get a penalty. Indycar needs to do the same thing and stop giving their drivers special treatment to do whatever they want, which seems like how things have been in the past.


About Dixon and Dario - I remember sitting in on a fan Q&A with them at Chicagoland. They both seemed personable. Dixon was quiet, Dario was pretty candid. They spent about 30 minutes at the Q&A and it was fun.

I've tried to get Dario's autograph after his last two 500 wins and have been unsuccessful. I was disappointed after this most recent 500 because there were about 20 of us fans who had stuck around two-and-a-half hours after the race ended and tried to get his autograph between the IMS pagoda and the media center. I overheard a PR person say Dario had to be somewhere in 2 minutes as he was being shepherded to a golf cart. Dario did sign autographs for a few people as he walked by. I realize there are sponsor and media obligations, but I wish he could have just taken the 5 minutes (or less) to meet all of us and sign something.

I agree that Penske's guys do a good job showing up at Meijer and Verizon stores. Marco has also done a good job the past few years traveling around Iowa. I see little in the way of fan meet-and-greets from Dixon, Dario, or Montoya on Ganassi's NASCAR side. I don't know if it's a product of the drivers, their owner, or their PR folks.

Tom G.

P-dog, I think you summed up my feelings on the waved off restart. Like redcar stated, it was obvious that Dixon was the main reason that the restart was waved. So why is that immune to being flagged for a drive thru? I mean, we all realize how badly you need to jump a start in Indycar to get it waved off. Seems like a penalty was in order.

Here's what I'd like to see. Let all the starts go green, then come back on a lap later and start reading the list of drive thru penalties. Give them a season of this, and they'll learn to stay in line. Anything less, and you're just being inconsistent.

I think the issue with Dario and Dixon not being available, is solely due to the Chipster's long term deal with Target. With one sponsor to take care of, (and a sponsor that can't even seem to find room on their shelves for ANYTHING indycar related) why bother? Pressing the flesh, in store appearances, and signing autographs would just be wasting time on the fans. *(denotes sarcasm)

That's why we all love Chip sooooo much.


Michael Andretti did a great job promoting the Milwaukee event/race. I had the pleasure of attending and spoke with a few local Milwaukee race attendees and they really appreciated how Andretti went out of his way to connect to the local fans (fair ticket prices, infield full of fun, increased tailgating opportunities - ability to come in and out during the day, post-race concert, etc.). Subsequently, I believe this event has a strong likelihood to grow in a positive direction next year.

Also, the actual spectator race viewing experience was outstanding! It was my first trip to the Milwaukee Mile and I hope to return next year.

Simona Fan

Dixon's penalty seemed straight forward to me. Either you penalize him for jumping a restart (since everyone was anticipating the restart, whether they flew the green flag or not), or you penalize him for passing under the yellow. Either way, he should have gotten the drive through. From my perception, Dixon is one of the worst violators of restarts and seems to always be hanging back and then getting a run coming to green. I was glad to see him finally get smacked down.

I will defend the drivers to some extent versus the NASCAR restarts because IndyCars are so much more responsive than any of the NASCAR cars. You hit the gas early in a 3400lb Sprint Cup car, it just slightly rumbles forward ahead of the others. Indycars are so much more agile and if a driver hits the gas even a split second before another driver, he's up next to him.

I'll echo what was said above. Throw the green flag and then review the videotape. Start handing out penalties like candy at Halloween. If Race Control has telemetry (which they could get if they wanted) look at each driver's gear and throttle position. If they jump before the green, penalty.

Jay Robinson

My kids like to meet the drivers, my oldest daughter especially (now 13). At Milwaukee, the two that I brought with me got to meet RHR, Oriol, Helio, and Briscoe up close at the Team Chevy tent in the infield. They really liked that. Dixon and Dario aren't doing their fan base any favors by hiding.

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