Indy’s road course is open to various reviews from cup drivers


Indianapolis (AP) — Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvic fully clarified their views on Saturday. They would rather race in the historic oval shape of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Other drivers didn’t seem to care about switching.

Now, after one short practice session, the cup driver spends Saturday night planning a strategic twist and turn for the Brickyard 200, which was reconstructed and renamed on Sunday.

Kyle Larson said it was “really fun” after actually posting the third fastest lap at 97.445 mph. Definitely happy. “

That’s not good news for other areas.

Larson is the point leader of the season after adding the series’ best fifth win on the Watkins Glen road course last week. The only drivers who ran fast on Saturday were Martin Truex Jr. at 98.021 and William Byron at 97.487.

Many are wondering if the best drivers in the series should compete on the road course. With reduced attendance and complaints about the passage of a 2.5-mile oval, race organizers have been looking for ways to inject excitement over brickyard weekends for years. When the Indianapolis Grand Prix was postponed due to last year’s COVID-19 pandemic, they seemed to inadvertently find a solution. IndyCar officials have rescheduled it as part of a rare crossover weekend with the top two NASCAR series.

And when Chase Briscoe defeated AJ Allmendinger and Austin Cindric on the final lap to win the Xfinity race, the organizers thought they might preview how it would work in a cup car. rice field.

This year, they have revived the weekend of the 3 Series 3 Races. For the first time, all three were placed on the 2.439 mile road course for 14 turns, reducing the brickyard distance in half.

Reviews are mixed.

“It’s definitely not the same Indianapolis. This place is built on an oval history. When I was a kid I wanted to race here. Come here and race on the road course It can be said that it is a little worse. “

It wasn’t just the venue that was disappointing.

Two series champions and two brickyard winners called the course a “parking lot” after Bush’s car rolled off the truck and entered a substandard practice session.

What they can do now is wait until Sunday’s race to determine if NASCAR made the right call.

“No, but it’s not the end of the world for me. That is, we’re still in Indy and we’re still racing here, so I don’t think it’s really the case after all. It’s very important. Not. “

good bye

Brad Keselowski knew from mid-July that the Sunday race would be his last trip to Indianapolis with Team Penske.

And after winning the team with the first Xfinity title in 2010, the first cup title in 2012, the Brickyard 400 and Southern 500 in 2018, and the Coca-Cola 600 in 2020, it wasn’t easy to accept.

“Goodbye is hard and not easy,” he said on Saturday. “This is a long farewell and we have time to make the transition. We are about to enjoy the moment.”

New Vantage Point

Dale Earnhardt Jr. has seen the race from all sorts of vantage points. On Sunday he will bet on a new place — scissors left.

The former CupStar is expected to help call the race with NBC from turn 7 just a short walk from where he is staying. And that’s not where he’s completely comfortable.

“I’ve never rode the scissors left in my life, so I’ll check the wind for the next few days,” Ernhard said on Friday.

Odds and end

Elliott is a 9-5 favorite to win the brickyard. FanDuel Sportsbook.. He finished first or second in eight of the last nine road races. … Larson admitted that he hasn’t talked to Christopher Bell since the two entwined at Watkins Glen last weekend. After turning the bell, Larson won the race. Bell finished in 7th place. … NASCAR has been hosting road races in consecutive weeks for the first time since 1964. The final event was the 1963 season finale on the riverside and the 1964 season opener on Augusta. … AJ Foyt, who won the Indianapolis 500 four times and the Daytona 500 in 1972, isn’t sticking to the race on Sunday. He will return to Houston before the green flag is waved. … Cup officials had only seven weekends scheduled for practice, qualifying and racing. There is only one left on the schedule.


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