Saturday, May 27, 2017

Indy 500 Memories

By Chanda Healton
Photo thanks to Larry Willems
Growing up in Indiana, I have long been a fan of the Indy 500. I began attending before I could ride a bike without training wheels, and the memories I have made there are for a lifetime. My first race was in 1984 where I watched Rick Mears win his second race. It turned me into his fan for many years to come. I have seen history made there and dreams shattered. The Indy 500 is in my soul and tomorrow I will return for yet another race. Tonight memories of races past are strong. That very first Indy 500 I mentioned that I attended 33 years ago? My first memory is of a couple guys wearing Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan masks standing on top of their RV mooning people! 

Another favorite memory was 1986. The rain delays were many that year. I was 8 years old and watched as two drunks carried a 3rd out of the track. They dropped him on his back and the first one said to the second. "Oh shit, We dropped him. They ran off and left their friend in the puddle!  I always wondered what happened when the friend caught up to them! 

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Chanda Healton at the 2016 Indy 500
Photo credit
Then there was 1999, the first race after I was old enough to legally drink. My best friend, Carrie Johnson and I took some alcohol with us and were slightly tipsy, her more so than me. As we left our little wooden grandstands that stood just inside turn 1 we heard honking behind us. Everyone moved out of the way, but Carrie jumped off to the side and fell. As she stood up, yelled "The race is over!" and gave the golf cart the 1 finger salute, I realized who was on the back of it. It was our favorite Nascar driver Tony Stewart heading to the race in Charlotte for the first Memorial Day double! We still laugh about it years later! Tht was our last year in those seats as the next year they were torn down to make way for Indy's now famous road course!
I also asked what is your favorite memory of the Indy 500 to Facebook friends and the IndyCar group Elite IndyCar here are some of their answers:

 Danilo Nardini Mancini When TK won, when it was on the yellow flag before Franchitti crash, I said to my dad: "Well if someone crash, he will win", and that's pretty much what happened.

Jeff Chiszar 70's....infield for a practice day. Beer may have been involved. Playing catch with a football...Arthur tossed me the ball, took off, and said, "lead me". So I did. He laid out to catch it and crumpled on the hood of a car. Know your target....

Brian Ditmer I just recall last year. We wound up driving around for an hour trying to figure out how to get to our parking in the infield. We wound up being directed to drive across the driving range of the golf course. The 100th running was a crazy scene... Lol loved it!

Photo thanks to Kurt Winkleman
Don Mulder My buddy and I shared our large order of bread with the neighboring table at an Italian restaurant in downtown Indy the night before the race in 2000. The lady sort of sized us up by asking about how we watched the race. When she figured we weren't race drunks she gave us her address on a napkin so we could come to the post race party at her house about six miles from the track. This year will be our 18th year in a row at the party!

Kurt Winkleman I used to listen to the race on Radio and really wanted to go. I told everyone hoping someone would get me there. In 1962 (I was 9) much to my surprise my Maternal Grandmother brought me to the race we saw Roger Ward win from Tower Terrace seats. She braved every minute of the race like a Trooper. Now I go with my son and two of my grandchildren and sit in Tower Terrace seats.

Ryan Christopher I broke my leg the night before the 2008 race. I bought crutches at CVS and went to the race. By time I got there my leg was pretty much one size from mid thigh to my ankle from the swelling. I stopped at a fire truck by the A and B Stands, they called a golf cart ambulance and it took me to the Infield Care Center. They wanted to put me in an ambulance and send me to the hospital, but I wouldn't miss the race. So they made a splint out of several splints, gave me a bunch of Motrin and sent me on my way. A golf cart took me back to my seats in the Paddock Penthouse. There was no way I could do the stairs so a yellow shirt snuck me in a catering elevator. After the race my friend was to drunk/sick to drive me to hospital so I drove myself using the crutch to press the clutch. The ER Dr kept lecturing me about not coming right in and I kept telling him "you live in Indy and you don't know how important the Indy 500 is?" Race Tax paid, but I did not miss the race!

Aprile White Patterson My daughter and I left Ontario Canada at 4:00 on the Saturday afternoon and drove straight through, playing word games near the end to try and stay awake. I think we got the last room in town, not much sleep and the next day I woke up with a massive migraine. The event meant putting pain and nausea aside and with my daughters' help I managed to see the whole race. I hope to get back again someday....feeling better of course...

Brett Kear I was living in Los Angeles. My boss gave me you OK to wait out the rain and stay until Tuesday . . . The race was initially rescheduled for Monday and then Tuesday. . . But was finally scheduled for the following Saturday. . . I ended up trading my 2 (top of the line) paddock Penthouse tickets {a whopping $80 each in those days ) for a "Mears Gang" t-shirt to a drunk at Union Jacks in Speedway.
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The famous Pagoda at IMS
Photo credit Joshua Healton

Paul Reams Can't remember the year, would have been early eighties we were in the North forty the night before the race consuming adult beverages and people watching. About dark we noticed a guy passed out in the fire lane and his buddies debating whether or not to get him up. Finally one of them said something to the effect of "I ain't gonna bother him man, he's mean when you wake him up" They walked away and left him.

Don Mulder In 1986 WLS radio in Chicago had a 500 trivia contest to win a package to the race. I ordered from the track that year for the first time and the seats stunk. So why not try to win GOOD SEATS on the radio? Long story short I won because I knew who Tony Hulman was. Plane tickets, room at the downtown Indy Hilton, spending money and what happened? Constant rain and a W9 form to the IRS. Never saw the race and it cost me about $400. Went back a week later. Sat in the paddock and saw a close 1-2-3 finish.

Joshua Healton The earliest memory I have of the 500 is going with my dad and sitting inside the track. I want to say it was turn 3. As we were leaving, I heard someone shout, "Show us your boobies." Dad got us out of there quickly. I don't remember what year it was or who won, but I do remember there we more drunk a$$holes back then.
Also, we had to walk a long way. Dad dindt want to pay for parking. Back then the Coke lot was free. He would park there and walk to the track. I am sure it is not as far as I remember it being, but it was a long treck for a small child. I was about 7 or 8 at the time.

Justin Plummer The very first Indy 500 I watched flag-to-flag was the 1992 edition; been an Indycar/IRL/CART fan sinc

Terri Rogers Zumbrook Last year at the 500 on Legends Day, I had a meet and greet with Dario Franchitti and I gathered the courage to ask him aout something I always wondered about driving.. He took several minutes answering my question and told a few stories about other drivers that fit it, too. Part of his answer appeared in a recent Road and Track article on the physical challenges of driving Indy Cars. What was great about it was it actually seemed like something he doesn't get asked about and he said , "0h wow that's a good question" and then had to think a bit before answering.
But this is my favorite Indy 500 story!

Don Conard IMS can be a jungle. One of our group years ago was lost for two months before he found his way back home. Back then there was an active railroad next to Crawfordsville Road and our guy climbed in a grain car to recuperate from his alcohol buzz and as far as we could tell from his recollection, he ended up in Pennsylvania. Frosty was to our little town what Otis was to Mayberry. Three of us high school kids were making plans to go to the race when Frosty overheard our plan and volunteered to pay for our whole deal if he could come with us. It was an offer we couldn't refuse!

"You know what makes the Indy 500 so special? 
It's a reflection of all that's good.
It's physical location in the near-center of the United States means that almost anyone in the nation doesn't have to trek too far to attend.
It's one of the few special races in the world that accepts drivers from almost every racing discipline. If you qualify, you're in the show.
It's a race that does not discriminate. Everyone has an equal chance to win. It's a matter of how well you drive and how your team manages your car. And no matter where the driver calls home, he/she is enthusiastically celebrated as a champion.
Hard work, grit, talent, and determination could crown you the champion, but the track may not grant your wish. A pinch of luck is needed.
It's a place that can humble the arrogant and praise the patient in an instant. You experience the dizzying highs and the lowest of lows in the blink of an eye.
It's a place that brings out the best in human spirit.
It's a race like no other. And I love it" -Amarpreet Chima

Tomorrow will be 101 races filled with amazing memories. If you have been, there is a chance you have an amazing story to go with it. Fast Lane Race News would love for you to tell us in the comments.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Indy 500 preview Sage Karam Young and talented beyond his years.

By Chanda Healton

First of all, let me start by saying, YES I AM A BIG SAGE KARAM FAN! I first noticed him in the 2014 Indy 500 where he raced to 9th using a style I have not seen since the 1990's. Back then it was a young Greg Moore. Sage, much like the memories of my childhood favorite, shows no fear and takes risks other drivers would never dare to make. This, along with many other reasons, are why Karam is my 2017 Indy 500 pick to win the race.

Many fans, however, disagree with me. Some going so far as to believe Karam will never return to IndyCar full time. I can't or won't believe that to be true. When the time is right, and it wasn't right in 2015, Karam will take IndyCar by storm. He will be an Indy 500 winner and an IndyCar champion! Let's look at some career facts on him:

Indy 500
Debut 2014
Sponsor Mecum Auctions
Engine Chevrolet
Chasis Dallara
Tires Firestone
Nick Vincent  with Sage Karam
2015 IndyCar Rookie year

Best IndyCar race 2015 Iowa 3rd
2013 Indy Lights Champion

Personal Information:
Age 22 (3/5/1995)
Height/Weight 5'11" 155 lbs
Hometown Nazareth, PA
Favorite Pastimes
iRacing, karting, playing basketball, fitness, guns, going to movies, video games and listening to music.
Other sports include wrestling and Football

This year Karam comes to us after doing quite well in IMSA with Lexus. Sharing the car with veteran driver Scott Pruitt has taught him a calm like that we have never seen in him before. That, combined with his last 2 horrible 500 finishes, have helped him to mature. This year I believe he will take his time and hopefully, with a little luck, make it safely to lap 200. But, hey, I'm just a writer. No one cares what I think. So, lets hear from the fans. Some love him, some don't, but options and opinions are what truly make this sport great, right? I asked the following questions to the members of the Facebook Group Elite IndyCar:
What do you think of Sage as a driver in general?

Sage is now in IMSA full time and says he is happy there . Do you think he has a future in NASCAR or IndyCar? Why or why not?

Can a team that only runs one race a year win with a driver who only drives one race a year? Why or why not?

DDR is a very good team. They put all their resources into the Indy 500 but should they consider going full schedule with Sage or another driver? Why or why not?

Lastly, how do you think Sage will finish in this year's race? 

And here is how they replied:

Kurt Winkleman: First impression; Sage is a hard charger with a ton of slightly untamed talent. The fans have been harsh and unfair in their assessment.

Paul Reams: Lot's of talent, a lot of bad press. Good hard charger who needs a calming influence, which he should have gotten from Dario during his first year at Ganassi.

Ray Jump: If he can harness the charges for late in the race he'll be fine. I wouldn't want him to run DDR though full time bc that would eventually damper his ability because the car maybe good at Indy but from former DDR teams they are awful everywhere else..... Win Indy and parlay that into a better full time ride example: Schmidt or Penske possibly. I'm personally not a fan but the kid has talent

Story writer Chanda Healton shows Sage Karam's show car some
 love before the 100th running of the Indy 500
Derryl Trujillo: Deserving of a full time entry. He'll be very competitive.

Asher Fair:
 -Aggressive but not overaggressive
-IndyCar yes because he's said that's still his main goal and he's already proven he can drive
-Yes because it's Indy (and just look at my profile photo)
-Full schedule with Sage. They've been a full-time team before and there's no better young driver without a ride currently
-Between 3rd and 10th

Jeni Rebecca Harris: I'd love to see Sage try Xfinity or Trucks but as long as he's happy, that's OK with me. I just hate that he still blames himself for what happened to Justin Wilson

Terri Rogers Zumbrook: I thought he had great potential but needed to lose the reckless attitude. He seems to have matured in that regard, but I am wondering who will give him more than a one off opportunity. He's too young and talented to write off, and he would have been challenging Josef for rides had he been better mentored or more disciplined. He certainly would have been given better opportunities than folks like Conor.

Keith Waye Well, in my opinion which is very different from other's is that to date Sage has yet to prove that he: is too driver. I'll give you that he is going and has not had time to race in a lot of events. He is also a crasher. He was leading at Pocono and crashed. He was moving up early in last year's Indy 500 and crashed. So until he can get a car to the finish I can't be on his bandwagon.

Shaun Patrick: I think Sage is a tremendous driver and the reason for this is his ability to be diverse in many different type of Motorsports and still be competitive.

He definitely could have a future in INDYCAR.. of course if he's given an opportunity to be in a car for more than one season and build on that. If that's his goal, I think it he can make it happen.

I predict a solid top 10 in this years Indy 500. The car has speed and has showed that in Monday's practice. As long as he stays out of trouble, I don't expect him to stay back in the pack.

Danilo Nardini Mancini: As a Driver: Yet to prove his talent
Future in NASCAR or IndyCar? Sure. In the US is quite easy to change series, but I think he's not moving out of it.
One year team and Driver win? Sure. But is so rare for that to happen, that you can't simply count on it.
Full Schedule for DDR? Sure. Indy need a grid with more cars and teams, but I don't think sage is a driver for an entire season. They should run with a more experienced driver.
Finish? On the wall.

Rick Ravon: Sage is the future of the sport. He is a superstar in the making. He has the potential to transcend the sport like Muhammad Ali transcended boxing or Michael Jordan transcended basketball. He is handsome, well spoken, and lightning fast. He comes from a good family, he would be a great influence for today's youth. He is going to shock the world on Sunday, and when he finally gets the chance to go full time, when he breaks through and wins that first race he is going to be more dominant than Scott Dixon. I've also said this many times, I worshiped Rick Mears since I was 12 years old. And when he retired in 1992 there was a void. That void could not be filled by anybody who was just ordinary. When Sage came along, he just had that certain something and I liked him right away. I haven't been this crazy about a racer since Rick retired. Every time Sage races, it's like Christmas day for me. I can't believe I still have a good 20 years or so to watch him and cheer him on!
Short lived as it was,
Sage leading a few laps
in 2016 was the highlight of my race. 

But one fan I feel said it best of all!

Eric Kalmus: Every year he matures in age. He will grow faster and faster. Definitely the future of the American drivers.

So there you have it. He is young, talented and looks amazing without his shirt! Sage Karam is the real deal. He has faced controversy in his career and overcame it. He will get his shares of boos, but all the great drivers do. You live and learn and move forward. I believe Karam can move forward and show the IndyCar world what I have known from his very first Indy 500. Sage belongs in the world of IndyCar!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Indy 500 Preview: The F1 Champion VS the 2X Indy 500 Champion

By Chanda Healton

Juan Pablo Montoya: What do you think of when you hear his name? If you are an old school Cart/IndyCar fan you may remember a man who led 167 of the 200 laps in the 2000 Indy 500 and won by over 7 seconds, a man who won the the 1999 CART championship and then, as so many great drivers did back then, left for F1. If you watch Formula One you may vaguely  remember a guy who won 7 races sometime in the years between 2001 and 2006. And if you are a NASCAR fan, this is your top memory of him:

Juan Vs Jet Dryer Daytona 2012 
And maybe the 2 races he won between 2006-2013. But the fact is, Montoya has won 2 Indy 500s and could very well make it 3 this year as he is driving a 5th Penske entry. What do fans think? Some have good thoughts, others not so good. We asked our loyal fans in the Facebook Group Elite IndyCar: 
Image result for juan pablo montoya 2000 Indy 500 win
First win 2000

Juan Pablo Montoya: Do you like or dislike him? What do you know about him?Will he race again full time, if so what series?Can he win his 3rd Indy 500 this year? If you say no then where do you think he will finish?

Here is what they said:

Ted Nesbitt: "I loved the guy when he first came into IndyCar, pulled for him while at F1. Pulled for him in NASCAR, but he's been a tad different since his return. Still a great driver of course, but his personality around the tracks last season was sorely lacking. He had a full on grump going whenever I encountered him (and there were many times) last season. In Toronto, he was dismissive of fans, wasn't engaging for the Drivers Field Autograph session (which I coordinated), and did not seem to be enjoying himself in general. If he was like that with his Team, little wonder he's only running a couple races for The Capt. Get with it or retire JPM, the sport is about the fans as much as it is the drivers."

Andy Mantai "I question whether JPM's physical condition will allow him to be competitive all day."

Danilo Nardini Mancini "I'm a big fan A very versatile race driver with a temper. Love his personality There's a small chance to see him at IndyCar next year, but I don't think so.I don't think he can win this year. He will finish on top 15"

Keith Waye: "I don't like Montoya as a person. He is a F-1 winner, we NASCAR winner, IndyCar winner and Champion and is a two time Indy 500 winner. He won't run IndyCar full time. He will race sports cars for Penske."

Michael Harvey:" I love Juan Pablo Montoya as a driver. Started watching him in his early Indycar days and then when he came to NASCAR I was thrilled. I know that he is one of the most skilled and diverse drivers to ever get behind the wheel of a racecar. Anything he gets in he does as good as he can. I feel like he will be back in Indycar eventually Full-Time or he will take a spot in the Tudor Series for Chip and they will reunite. I believe Juan has a good shot to claim his 3rd 500. As always the Penske cars are bad fast and he can certainly wheel that car to the front."

Terri Rogers Zumbrook: I think JPM gets a bad rap from some because he's not as "friendly" as other drivers. When I see him with his kids at fan events it occurs to me that he is very much the introvert and Interacting with people is not comfortable for him. Indycar fans have the greatest access to the drivers of any series. They also have autograph sessions or fans And JPM attends his obligations. My favorite quote regarding JPM comes from Paul Tracy. He said something like , 'JPM will always give you room on the track, just not enough.'
Image result for juan pablo montoya 2017
2015 win #2 

With qualifying this weekend, we will just have to wait an see if he can win number 3 this year. 

That brings us to our next driver, Fernando Alonso.  I confess, I don't know a lot about F1. It's a very hard sport t follow in the USA if yu enjoy sleeping in! However from what I have seen of him in practice this week, I believe he could go back to F1 with the Borg-Warner trophy and a ROTY title! What do others think? Let's find out!! We asked:
Fernando Alonso What do you know about him and his Formula 1 career? Can he handle 200 laps on an Oval? (Remember Formula one does not use ovals so many of the European drivers have never driven them) Do you think we may see him drive IndyCar full time in the future? Where do you think he will finish in the race?Will he take ROTY? Would it be bad for IndyCar if he won the 500 or good for it?

Michael Harvey I have never watched F1 that much but I do know who Fernando is and his past success in that series. I feel there will be a HUGE learning curve for sure but if he is willing to take the chance and learn I feel he will do OK. I honstly never see Fernando doing more than just this Indy 500 and possibly a few more if he likes it. I think he will eventually get a better F1 ride and he will get back to where he once was. The only chance I see for him to try a full Indycar season is if McLaren comes to the Series Full Time with Solid Backing. I say he will at least finish in the Top 20 unless a problem occurs. I don't think he will be the Rookie of the Race. I see that going to Ed Jones or possibly Harvey. It would be huge news for sure if he won the 500. The equivalent to that would be when Mario Andretti won the Daytona 500. Unlike with NASCAR I feel It would be perceived as a good thing. It is no secret Indycar is slowly falling off and if Fernando wins it could really reel in some new fans.
Image result for Fernando Alonso Indy 500
Fernando Alonso

Brenan Conroy: Alonso is a two time champion, did his best from early on, has had some not great cars and taken them WAY higher than he should have, like the 2012 Ferrari. I think he can. Monza is a hell of a track and the amount of g-forces F1 cars have to make from braking and some of the turns particularly there is something that shouldn't be ignored He may run the 500 a few times, but no way will he run full time. I never can pick who will finish high in the 500. I wouldn't be shocked if he got a top 10 though. He will definitely win ROTY. I think it would be both good and bad for IndyCar if he won. Good in that it will give the series even more international exposure, and potentially even more drivers from F1/Rally. Bad in that it may perpetuate once again that Indy isn't up to F1 standards.

Keith Waye: Alonso is a 2 time F-1 World champion. He has over 30 F-1 wins. He can handle the oval, he did over 140 laps in his test a few weeks ago. I don't see him doing Indy cars full time next season. I think he will finish in the top 15 at Indy. Yes I think he will get Rookie of the year. If he wins yes it will be world sports news. It won't hurt IndyCar with world news if he wins

Danilo Nardini Mancini; "He's very good, one of the best on the grid. Twice champion beating Michael Schumacher, the best F1 driver ever
He can handle. Any F1 driver can handle honestly, they got a really nice physics preparation
I don't think he can win, but he's very unpredictable maybe a Top 15 He will win ROTY
Honestly, can be bad, we wil see a lot of bullshit coming out of some fans,"

And what other F1 drivers would our fans like to see in the Indy 500? My personal vote goes to Nico Rosberg!
Danilo Nardini Mancini; "Any of the top drivers plus Felipe Massa."

Michael Harvey: "I would like to see Räikkönen and of course Vettel. Kimi has tried his hand at ovals when he ventured into NASCAR before so I could see that being a possibility. Vettel is just a dream. It would be cool to see him in a Indycar just my personal opinion."

Brenan Conroy: I'd love to see Sergio Perez, Daniel Ricciardo, and Kimi Raikkonen give them shots. Kimi because he's already pretty st as a jack of all trades driver, Daniel because he's so affable and also a HUGE fan of American racing (he runs the #3 in F1 in honor of Dale Earnhardt), and Sergio because he grew up in American racing, and in 2004 ran Skip Barber cars.

So there you have it. two more drivers who could take IndyCar by storm. Tune in next week as we talk about my personal favorite driver, Sage Karam! 

Leave us a comment on who you think will win the Indy 500! And don't forget to Like us on Facebook, and  Follow us on twitter! Happy qualifying everyone!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Kansas Fan Experiance

Fan analysis of the Go Bowling 400 at Kansas Speedway

by Wendy Staley-Bryant

All photos by Wendy Staley-Bryant

My husband, Tim, and I attended the race at Kansas Speedway last weekend. This was our first time at this track, and we drove 500 miles, 9 hours, from our central Indiana home to get there.

Pre-race and introductions

A little background information on us: Wendy is 48 and Tim is 61, this race weekend was both a Mother's Day present and an early birthday present for me; my husband can be pretty cool. My favorite drivers are Kyle Busch and Kyle Larson; Tim has been cheering for Kyle Larson since Tony Stewart retired. We both agree that our least favorite drivers are Joey Logano and Brad Keslowski.

We arrived at the speedway around 11:30 am with all the necessary things for a fun day of Racing. We parked in the preferred parking lot, and were in the second row from the track. We grilled food and visited with the fans around us for a couple of hours. Then, it was time to retrieve our tickets at the will call window and pick up some souvenirs. We bought a Kansas Speedway hat for Tim, a Kansas speedway shirt for me, a Ryan Blaney shirt for our son, a Martin Truex Jr. coozie for our daughter, a pair of Kevin Harvick socks for my BFF, and a Kansas Speedway sticker for our race table. The bargain of the day was Tim's hat which was priced at $27.99, but missing the price tag. After the checker couldn't find another, her supervisor priced it at $8.00.

We had pre-race infield passes. We walked on the track; stood on the start/finish line, and then, on pit road! We stood in victory lane and watched Dale Jr's car go through pre-race inspection. We enjoyed the Parmalee concert, and were up close for driver introductions. Have I told you that my husband can be pretty amazing.

Our seats were 3 sections after the start/finish line, a little over half way up the rows. We were across from the pits of Kevin Harvick and Joey Logano. The best pass of the race was probably when, near the end, Truex chased down Blaney and passed him to take the lead. The most unfortunate move move was when Chase Elliot hit Michael McDowell on pit road; his car was never right after that. The most memorable event was the Logano, Patrick, Almirola wreck. We watched as they cut Almirola out of his car and said a prayer for his safety.

My drivers finished 5th and 6th and ran in the top 5 all day. I can't complain about good, solid finishes.

Thoughts on the winner: I have nothing but respect for Martin Truex and enjoy watching him win, but was truly hoping to see a first time winner.

We stayed for the victory lane interview. It only took us 17 minutes to get out of the track.

My favorite part was Logano going back at the beginning of the race. Least favorite had to be Keslowski finishing 2nd...where the hell did he come from?! Nascar could improve the race by getting rid of the cautions at the end of the segments. Why not just throw the green checkered flag and keep on racing? Do these drivers really need the extra lucky dogs and free pit stops?

We couldn't have asked for a better day. The weather was beautiful and the race was exciting, but we will not be going back next year as we will move on to check another track off our bucket list.
Next, I am off to the Brickyard 400; may the best Kyle win! Last one there is a Joey Logano fan!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

The right and wrong ways to do a post-crash interview

Opinion piece by Joshua Healton

First off, we all need to say a big prayer for Aric Almirola and his family. Everything I am reading says that he may have a back injury. I am praying for a speedy recovery and that he is able to walk out of the hospital.

That said, I could not help but notice the complete opposite attitudes and the apparent entitlement that one driver expressed in their post-crash interview.

Last night, Joey Logano had a failure of the right front brake rotor in his #22 Ford that sent him into the #10 Ford driven by Danica Patrick. Both cars were then hit hard by the #43 Ford driven by Aric Almirola. Both Danica and Joey quickly got out of their cars and shared a ride to the infield care center. Aric had to have the roof of his car cut open and was take out on a back board. He was later airlifted to a local hospital.

After being released from the care center Joey made the following statement. “Just saying a lot of prayers for Aric right now. A lot of us took a hard hit. Something broke on my car, I don’t know what it was. I noticed it as I was trying to go in. I tried to back it off but you’re going 215 and it’s hard to check up. The car just took a bit step sideways into the corner and I hooked Danica.

“I just hope everyone is OK. I hope Aric is alright,” added Logano. “That’s the last thing you want to see, a big hit like that for anyone. It’s unfortunate for everyone. Let’s hope that Aric is alright.”
Shortly thereafter, Danica came out of the care center and gave the following interview. “When he [Logano] said he had a failure, I can’t say it made me feel that much better in the moment. I am just frustrated for the lack of breaks I get. It seems like every time​ things are going better and something happens I get crashed or am in a crash.

“Unfortunately there were two of us that got collected and while I am okay, one of these times one if these really big accidents someone is not going to be okay,” said Patrick. “Aric [Almirola] is not okay and his car looked the best of everybody.”

After the race, both drivers took to Twitter. (As of this writing, these are the latest tweets from both drivers)

Am I the only one who sees the polar opposite attitudes that these two drivers had after a crash that could have severely injured a fellow driver? Am I the only one who is mad that the most popular female driver ever in NASCAR chose to use her post-crash interview to bemoan the "bad luck" she has had this year.

Danica, you walked away from a firey crash that may have lasting consequences for a fellow driver. How about you put the saltiness on hold and make sure that your fellow driver is OK before saying you have "bad luck?" Is that too much to ask?

(The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the writer only and not of Fast Lane Race News or its other writers or editors.)

Update: Aric Almirola has been released from the hospital and will be heading home to Mooresville, NC. I will continue to pray for a speedy recovery.

Here’s the official press release from the team about Almirola’s injury:

    "KANSAS CITY, Kan. – (May 14, 2017) – Aric Almirola, driver of the No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford, has been released from a local Kansas hospital and will fly back to his home in Mooresville, N.C. today.

    Almirola suffered a compression fracture to his T5 Vertebra after a multi-car accident at Kansas Speedway Saturday night.  Almirola is mobile and will follow-up with his doctors in Charlotte.

    Richard Petty Motorsports will provide further updates when available."