I entitled today’s offering “A Racing Fans Weekend” because if you are a race fan, this is your weekend. What can be better than being able to turn on the TV at noon Sunday, and tune into the Indianapolis 500 with all it’s pageantry on ABC , and then turn to Fox for a 6:16 PM Green Flag from Charlotte Motor Speedway. Sounds to me like there will be just enough time between races to Barbecue some food to last until the checkered flag that will fly at the Coke 600 around midnight.
Although I am not a huge Indy Car fan, the one race I do watch every year is the The Memorial Day Classic. They were especially interesting in the past when Tony Stewart or John Andretti would do Double Duty at both tracks. But never the less, I enjoy this once a year visit to open wheel racing.
Ryan Briscoe is your pole sitter and will come to the Green flag along side James Hinchcliffe and Ryan Hunter-Reay on the famed 2 1/2 mile race track. Notable drivers to keep an eye on are Marco Andretti who starts fourth, the always dangerous Helio Castroneves 6th, and Dario Franchitti rolls off 16th.
Marco Andretti has come close so many times, with 3 third place finishes and a 2nd place to Sam Hornish Jr. as a rookie in 2006. I know he would love to add his name to the Borg Warner Trophy along side his famous family members. Look for the 25 year old driver to finish either close to the lead, or with a little luck, drive to victory lane.
The obvious person who will be missing in this years race at Indy will be Danica Patrick. A regular at this race for the length of her career, will be busy at the CMS running in both the Nationwide and Sprint Cup races Saturday and Sunday Night. With Danica missing, the top female at Indy should be Simona de Silvestro. Don’t count Ana Beatriz , the Brazilian driver out .
There will be a tribute to Dan Wheldon who died in a crash at Las Vegas at the end of last season. Bryan Herta will drive around the track in a “Lap Of Honor” prior to the command to start engines. Wheldon was a two time winner at Indianapolis.
The action gets underway Saturday for those of us who want more, with the History 300 from Charlotte. The Green Flag should wave around 3 PM on ABC for this Nationwide event. All eyes will be on Danica Patrick as she begins the first 300 miles of a 900 mile weekend. Danica has only competed on this track once in 2010 at the Dollar General 300 where she finished in 21st position.
Sunday Nights Coco Cola 600 will com to life on Fox around 6PM where last years winner Kevin Harvick will attempt to defend his title. Harvick has been very quiet this season and will begin the race 8th in the Sprint Cup points standings, 50 points behind leader Greg Biffle. Harvick hasn’t had a very stellar season so far, and has not won a race since The Wonderful Pistachios 400 at Richmond in September. The race favorite has to be Jimmie Johnson after his somewhat easy win in Saturday Nights Sprint All Star Race.
Memorial Day and Racing is as American as Apple Pie and Chevrolet. So don’t forget to put the Stars and Stripes on the pole, Barbecue some Baby Backs, pop a Bud Lite, and in Ole DW’s words, “Lets Go Racing Boys”. Boogity—Boogity—Boogity!!
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