No. 946
May 16, 2018
 

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Horizon


Tuesday
May272008

Horizon #447

May 28, 2008 

arrowup.gifVitor Meira. The gritty Brazilian drove a sensational race last Sunday, and his single-car Panther Racing team effort was simply superb. It was Vitor's second career runner-up finish in the ‘500’. He also finished second in 2005. Meira has five top-10 finishes in six Indy starts.

arrowup.gifMarco Andretti. The move on his teammate Tony Kanaan was questionable - depending on which side of the fence you're on - but there's no denying this kid's talent and speed. He set the race's fastest lap, just like his father Michael, who did it in 1992, and his grandfather, Mario, who did it in 1978, and you'd think he just has to win the 500 at least once, despite all the troubles his father and grandfather had at the Speedway.

arrowdown.gifTeam Penske. An uncharacteristically lackluster performance by Roger Penske's outfit, even though Helio Castroneves (No. 3 Team Penske D/H/F) finished fourth, and Ryan Briscoe (No. 6 Team Penske D/H/F) qualified third. Castroneves balking Marco at the end clearly cost Marco a run at Meira for second, and Briscoe's errant maneuver coming out of the pits took himself and Danica Patrick out of the race. Not good and not Penske-caliber stuff, that's for sure.

arrowup.gifEd Carpenter. He scored his best finish (fifth) in the Indianapolis 500 and his third career fifth-place finish in IndyCar racing. Carpenter displayed guts and determination and delivered an outstanding drive last Sunday.

arrowup.gifRyan Hunter-Reay. Driving his No. 17 Rahal Letterman Racing Team Ethanol D/H/F, Hunter-Reay finished sixth, tying his career-best finish recorded at Michigan last year and was named Rookie of the Year. He had this to say about his big day: "It's huge. One year ago I was walking around the NASCAR paddock, now I'm sitting here at the Indy 500 press room talking about being Rookie of the Year. It's huge. I mean, that's how racing is, but you've got to be ready when the opportunity comes, and I was, and I've been working well with this team, they've been working well with me. It's a great bunch of guys, and I think there's going to be much better things to come this year. With that said, we were punching above our weight. I'm not under any disillusions that we're going to be fighting Penske, AGR and Ganassi every weekend. They're in a league of their own at the moment. Another thing is congratulations to Scott Dixon. It's nice to see the fastest car win the race."

arrowup.gifHideki Mutoh. AGR's "forgotten man" Hideki Mutoh, the American Dairy Association Fastest Rookie in qualifying, finished seventh, his third top-10 finish of the season. Mutoh had an impressive run, and we expect him to be a formidable force in IndyCar racing in the not-too-distant future.

arrowup.gifTomas Scheckter. The South African driver drove a tremendous race in his No. 12 Symantec Luczo Dragon Racing entry before breaking a drive shaft. He was right on pace with the leaders and making his move when his car broke. "It was just a driveshaft," Scheckter said. "It happens. I just have to thank my team and sponsors for giving me the chance to do what I love to do. It is a pity. These things sometimes happen. It is the worst time. It was the last stop of the Indy 500." He added: "I was just conserving fuel by driving at 90 percent, waiting for the last laps. When I wanted to give it a go and see what I could do, it happened. That is racing."

arrowup.gifSarah Fisher. Speaking of true grit and determination, you cannot say enough about Sarah and her family-owned and operated team. She didn't deserve what happened to her Sunday, and hopefully she can find her way to make more races this year.

arrowup.gifIndy's Record Purse. Scott Dixon earned a record $2,988,065 from a record overall purse of $14,406,580 for his victory in the 92nd Indianapolis 500-Mile Race. The event purse is comprised of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Indy Racing League awards, including the new IndyCar TEAM (Team Enhancement and Allocation Matrix) program, sponsor awards and other designated awards. Vitor Meira’s second-place finish earned him $1,273,215, the first time anyone other than the Indianapolis winner has won more than $1 million. Marco Andretti finished third ­ his second top-three Indy finish in three years ­ and earned $782,065. Helio Castroneves crossed the finish line in fourth place, earning $482,815, and Ed Carpenter earned $399,665 with his Indy career-best finish of fifth. Ryan Hunter-Reay was awarded the prestigious Indianapolis 500 Chase Rookie of the Year Award and its $25,000 bonus. Hunter-Reay finished sixth after starting 20th. He climbed into the top 10 by Lap 80 and stayed there the rest of the race. At the Victory Celebration, Meira received the Scott Brayton Driver’s Trophy, presented since 1997 to the driver who best exemplifies the character and racing spirit of the late Scott Brayton.

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(Photo©SCCA/Mark Weber)
Kuno Wittmer (No. 44 Acura/RealTime/Eibach/Red Line Acura TSX), of Montreal, Que., won the first of two SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge Touring Car races at Lime Rock Park over Memorial Day Weekend further enhancing his point lead. Polesitter Pierre Kleinubing (No. 43 Acura/RealTime/Red Line Acura TSX), of Coconut Creek, Fla., and Chip Herr (No. 97 Mazdaspeed/Tindol Motorsport MAZDA6), of Lititz, Pa., completed the podium. Wittmer sailed to 4.323-second margin of victory, leading all 44 laps of the 67.32-mile race, which ran free of yellow flags and averaged a series record 92.834 mph. It was the second race win of the season for Wittmer, who continues to lead the SCCA SPEED Touring Car Drivers Championship by 22 points over Kleinubing (437 to 415). Peter Cunningham, of Milwaukee, Wis., remains third in the Drivers Championship behind Wittmer and Kleinubing, with 353 points.

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(Photo©SCCA/Mark Weber)
Chip Herr (No. 97 Mazdaspeed/Tindol Motorsport MAZDA6 ), of Lititz, Pa., led every lap from the pole to capture his fifth career SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge win in Monday’s second half of a SCCA SPEED Touring Car doubleheader at Lime Rock Park. Peter Cunningham (No. 42 Acura/RealTime/Eibach/Red Line Acura TSX), of Milwaukee, Wis., finished second, and Pierre Kleinubing (No. 43 Acura/RealTime/Eibach/Red Line Acura TSX), of Coconut Creek, Fla., came home in third. The 65.79-mile event was shortened by one lap (from 44 to 43) due to a local noise curfew of 6 p.m. Herr won by 0.891-second. Herr also turned the fastest lap of the race, an even 59 seconds (93.356 mph) around the seven-turn, 1.53-mile circuit. Kleinubing cut into teammate Wittmer’s point lead, which now stands at six, 517 to 511. Cunningham sits third, with 461, Herr climbed to fourth in points (423), followed by Seth Thomas (395) in fifth. Acura now leads Mazda 43 to 32 in the SCCA SPEED Touring Car Manufacturers’ Championship Presented by RACER. This race will be broadcast Wednesday, June 4, at 12 noon (EDT) on SPEED. The series next travels to Watkins Glen International in two weeks time for a race Sunday, June 8. For more information visit .

arrowup.gifLewis Hamilton. He wins the Grand Prix of Monaco in his McLaren-Mercedes in what was a shockingly intriguing race for a change because of the rainy conditions. That doesn't mean we'll watch every race from now on, but at least one race was worth watching this season.

 

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