Friday, Mar 31
Thomas Marquis

Thomas Marquis

Rossi Takes the Checkered Flag in Indy

It’s great to be at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway at the Gallagher Grand Prix, the first of 3 races this weekend. We also have the Pennzoil 150 on the road course at IMS. The beginning of the Grand Prix was not without drama. Conor Daly had issues in the pits after running P6. There was an incident between Will Power and Pato O’Ward and Grosjean had some issues in the pits as well. The back end of the cars were slipping and sliding around but straightened up as the race went on. Marcus Ericksson started at the back of the grid but found himself in P2 for a time. And  early on, Jimmy Johnson was taking faster laps than Will Power and found himself in P1 in lap 24.

By lap 49, Herta was out of the race. He said via radio, “I think this is something we can’t fix.”

During the press conference, Will Power was talking about IMS and stated, “It’s always hard starting on the outside of this track…you get freighttrained.” 

Will Power ended up P3 which put him 7th all time leader for podium finishes and 92 career podium finishes. With this 3rd place finish, he took the points lead with 4 races to go. When asked how the season would end up, he stated, “It feels like it always goes down to the last race; [and it is] Impossible to predict in this series.” 46 points separate the top 5, so it truly will come down to the final 4 races this season.

Christian Lundgaard came in P2 for his first podium finish of his career. He stated, “It feels amazing, but the best thing is the team really deserves it….I’m just a guy doing my job, really…This is the right path. We are going in the right direction.” Lungaard turned 21last Saturday and showed a tremendous amount of poise for a 21 year old. One of his presents was a trip to Las Vegas immediately after Laguna Seca. Power suggested that the rest of the group be invited. Lungaard refused to let us know where he would be staying. 

Alexander Rossi led 44 of 85 laps. This was Rossi's 1st win in approximately 1000 days. This was his 8th career win. Rossi said, “We had a solid test here a month or so ago…As challenging as it is for me, it is for them too [speaking of the rest of the team].” Rossi was asked if a weight had been lifted and stated, “Yes. There’s no other way to explain it. You’re as good as your last race. It doesn’t matter how good you are…It’s a very special thing today.” 

It was announced in June that Rossi will be headed to McLaren. Rossi said today during the press conference, “Good thing we don’t have to have the conversation about breaking the losing streak.”

Be sure and tune into The Balance every Saturday morning from 9-11am. You can also find the podcast replay where ever you find your podcasts.

Indianapolis.. Will Power was spot on

It was an amazing day for racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the IndyCarGP.

Perfect weather for racing! All levels of Indy Car had races all leading up to incredible performance by team Penske !

Will Power wins his 2nd straight GP at Indy. His strategy with his “Red Tires” was spot on. Power pressed the push-to-pass button at precisely the right moment to give Roger Penske’s his 200th series win!

Power had a late caution period that shrunk his lead, barely won the race off pit lane on the final stop and even drove through some light rain to pull away from Dixion who had great battle in the pack to make it to second by 2.2443 seconds for his second straight IndyCar Grand Prix victory.

Also let’s not forget the other Canadian over at Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Robert Wickens, finished third, more than 8.1 seconds off the pace. I said to Robert after the race “Hell of a rookie year your having” His response was simply “The years not over yet” and it may just end with him being the Rookie of the year! Wickens. Despite fading late when he was saving fuel, he has started three races in the top six and finished in the top-five three times. He would probably have four top-five if not for a late crash at St. Petersburg.

Ok time to turn focus to the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500, we do that starting on Tuesday.

Be sure to follow me @ThomasMarq and @TBalance on Twitter

INDIANAPOLIS – Exciting news from RLL racing. Big announcement was made here at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. A cameo appearance was made by David Letterman.

The partnership between Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing and SoldierStrong, with the Turns for Troops program that supports the nonprofit organization that’s dedicated to providing advanced medical technologies (namely but not exclusively exoskeletons), it’s a cause Letterman and RLL Racing care deeply about.

Letterman, who introduced himself as “George Bernard Shaw” in his first comments today, reflected on what that all means.

“This topic raises so many questions for me even just sitting here, mentioned that they have 13 of these suits, and I’ve seen them work. I’ve seen them take a human who can’t get out of a chair and walk,” he said. “We have 13 of these now in use. One wonders what the number is of quadriplegic and paraplegic men and women who come back from military service in the defense of the United States.

“I think this is a fantastic thing, if only to create the awareness. Five years ago, I didn’t realize veterans had problems returning. It’s not like World War II. Many times they return to nothing and then sign up again and then go back to a tour of duty. So this problem deserves every amount of attention and spotlight it can garner, and one wonders why isn’t there a box on our tax return where if you want to donate a dollar to build one of these suits for a quadriplegic or a paraplegic, check it here and we’ll take care of that.”

The team has a relationship with Sgt. Dan Rose, paralyzed in Afghanistan from an IED, who attended the season finale in Sonoma last year in one of the more inspirational moments of the 2016 season

The younger Rahal, who debuted the United Rentals livery last year and who is driving a special edition livery this weekend, explained his own devotion to patriotism and what the partnership has meant.

“I’ve got to say, when this initiative came upon us, obviously thanks to United Rentals and Chris, they deserve a lot of credit for putting this program together and everything that they did for us last year, and really even when we announced it, it was, what, Detroit, I think, so they even backdated their donation to the start of the year and donated through the entire thing, and we were very proud to raise over $100,000 last year,” he said.

Hats off to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing ,Untied Rentals, Soldier Strong, and the Turns for Troops way to step up for the troops!


It's the month of May. That can only mean Indy Car has returned to the World Famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway. 

Yesterday tire testing for ProMazda Road to Indy,CooperTireUsF2000, and Indy Lights series.

Today the fun begins, as the month of May officially kicks off.

 Today’s action…. Big announcement coming from Conor Daily.

SCHEDULE (All times local)

7 a.m.-6 p.m.: Ticket Office Open

7 a.m.-6 p.m.: Credential Office Open

7:30 a.m.-6 p.m.: Public Gates Open

7:30 a.m.-6 p.m.: IMS Midway Open

8:05-8:25 a.m.: USF2000 Qualifying Session 1

8:40-9 a.m.: Pro Mazda Qualifying Session 1

9:15-10 a.m.: Verizon IndyCar Series Practice 1

10-10:30 a.m.: USF2000 Driver Autograph Session (Fan Village)

10:20-10:50 a.m.: Indy Lights Practice

11-11:45 a.m.: INDYCAR Driver Autograph Session (Fan Village)

11:10-11:30 a.m.: USF2000 Qualifying Session 2

11:50 a.m.-12:10 p.m.: Pro Mazda Qualifying Session 2

12-12:25 p.m.: Indy Lights Driver Autograph Session (Fan Village)

12:30-1:15 p.m.: Verizon IndyCar Series Practice 2

1-1:25 p.m.: Pro Mazda Driver Autograph Session (Fan Village)

1:30-2:30 p.m.: Indy Lights Race 1

2:45-3:20 p.m.: USF2000 Race 1

3:35-4:15 p.m.: Pro Mazda Race 1

4:30-5:45 p.m.: Verizon IndyCar Series Qualifying

6 p.m.: Verizon P1 Award Ceremony

TICKETS: $20 (general admission). Kids 15 and under free when accompanied by adult with ticket.

PUBLIC GATES OPEN (7:30 a.m.-6 p.m.): Gate 1, Gate 1B, Gate 2, Gate 4, Gate 6, Media Gate, Gate 7 Vehicle, Gate 7 South Pedestrian, Gate 9, Gate 9A Credential, Gate 10, Gate 10A

STANDS OPEN: B Penthouse, Backstretch Family Mounds, Backstretch Mounds, Corner 7, E Penthouse, H Stand (as needed), Hulman North Mounds, Hulman South Mounds, J Stand (as needed), North Vista Wheelchair, Northwest Vista 1-10, Northwest Vista Deck, Paddock Penthouse 9-12, Tower Terrace (37-42), South Terrace, South Vista (1-5), South Vista Deck, Turn 2 Mounds, Turn 4 Mounds

PARKING LOTS OPEN, $10 (6:30 a.m.): Lot 1A - Paid Daily, Lot 2 - Paid Daily, Main Gate - Paid Daily, North 40 - Free Public Parking (while available), Turn 3 - Free Public Parking (opens at 7:30 a.m., while available), Free ADA parking will be in the North 40, West Museum Lot (opens at 7:30 a.m.).

IMS MUSEUM HOURS: 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Admission $10 adults, $5 for ages 6-15, free for 5 and under.





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