It’s not even May Day (which, as a socialist, I am duty bound to celebrate – so don’t expect any posts from me tomorrow) and he is already hyping the bajeezus out of that little Memorial Day get together at the brickyard. Somehow, in his euphoria, he even dragged my name into the proceedings. So what if I think Tony George was the second shooter on the grassy knoll? I have my reasons.
You see, it’s not that I lack interest in the 500. Quite the opposite, I am looking forward to a much improved race this year. I just don’t see why it’s such a big deal. Let’s be honest, Indy has lost most of its luster over the last decade. Far more people will watch the NASCAB 600 that same weekend (’cause, ya know, they can go 100 extra miles so it must be better). Even with the added interest of a single open wheel series, the race is a pale shadow of its former glory.
And I hate to pee in anybody’s Cheerios, but it should be pointed out that the Indianapolis 500 is not, nor has it ever been, the ‘Greatest Spectacle in Racing’. That honor belongs to a race not quite as old but with an even richer history: The 24 Hours of Le Mans. A distance of 500, even 600 miles just seems so trivial next to a race that spans an entire revolution of our planet. And while the Indy fans like to brag about 220 mph top speeds, Le Mans enthusiasts know the Mulsanne Straight has seen speeds in excess of 250 mph. Not that speed is everything, of course. :~D
Anyway, the Le Mans hype can wait another month. For the time being sports car racing fans visiting The Starting Grid will have to endure endless posts about the greatest spectacle in American open wheel racing. But our time shall come, my comrades of the covered wheel, our time shall come!
We now return you to our regularly scheduled programming…