So, I'll take the time to respond to some of the AOW experts that emerged to respond to Pete Pistone's blog about Danica Patrick. I chose to do it here because this is a relatively safe haven...these are my opinions, and I am allowed more space to elaborate on those opinions than on the general boards.
So where to begin:
And you're saying you would rather see a male take her spot who drives as well as she does? Any male who has more talent then Danica will probably be picked up by racing team. This has been a popular theme, with slight variations. The writers seem to believe that there aren't any drivers who could do a better job than Danica, who are without a ride. I'll give two names to start with: Paul Tracy and Justin Wilson.
As pathetic as Danica's act is, the IRL needs it to survive.
Another popular argument. Just as wrong of course. What does the "IRL" need to survive? The devil himself, Tony George, has that little track in Indiana where they run some races on occasion. As long as he owns that track, they are set.
(The quotation marks on "IRL" are because that is another one of the "experts" habits. The series is actually the IndyCar Series, or ICS for short)
PS: Of her 64 career starts, she has finished in the top 10 a total of 36 times. That isn't bottom of the barrel.
Here is where I really start to enjoy things, the listing of Danica Patrick stats. Here you go, I am so afraid of losing this discussion, I'll post her career stats myself:
STARTS: 64 WINS: 1 TOP 5: 11 TOP 10: 36 POLES: 3 LAPS LED: 84 RUNNING AT FINISH: 53
So, the argument always seems to highlight those 36 top 10's. That does sound impressive. Of course the average car count for the IRL/ICS during the period of time between 2005 -2008 was 18.6, so finishing in the top 10 didn't necessarily mean that you were even in the top half of the field at the finish. I think the more telling stat is the 84 laps led. As the same poster I quoted above decided to use Marco Andretti as an example of a driver who only has a ride because of his last name, I would like to point out that this beneficiary of nepotism led 330 laps..THIS LAST SEASON.
IRL racing has seen much better days like 20 yrs ago The "experts" who continue to use this point are obviously all DeLorean owners, and friends of Marty. The IRL/ICS has only existed since 1996. When I count that on my fingers, I see them entering their 14th year (13th season, 96-97 were combined) Of course they all think that F1, ChampCar/CART, IRL/ISC ran the same cars also. But they all know a lot about Danica, even if they don't actually watch the races.
LETS MOVE ON:
Interesting things to watch on Feb.24..Speed TV will be covering the announcement of USF1, the F1 team being organized by Peter Windsor and Ken Anderson. They will be looking at fielding a team on the Grand Prix circuit in 2010..with American drivers, cars featuring American technology, and located out of Charlotte, NC. Well, lets open up the discussion here: who might be the potential drivers? Scott Speed would seem to be a likely candidate, as would Marco Andretti (maybe there was more to the A1GP drive in the off-season then just ICS experience. Getting a little feel of the international aspect of driving)
As I mentioned in my last blog, Sebastien Bourdais will be retaing his drive for the 2009 F1 series with Toro Rosso, but there was a bit of a surprise announcement from SeaBass when he confirmed that he will also be driving for Peugeot at the LeMans 24 hour race as well as the Sebring 12 hour race. A win at LeMans would mean more to SeaBass than a F1 win, so I hope he gets it. He does have one 2nd place already in 2007.
USAR announced their schedule for 2009. It is going to be a 14 race season this year, one division. Included this year is another visit to the "Rock" during the 4 race championship series. Although it looks like Madison is off the schedule, I'll still be able to see them run at least once when they visit Iowa Speedway in September.
I'm looking forward to attending an event that I've always wanted to go to in the past, but it just never worked out before. This July, I'm going to my first vintage event at a track. I'll be attending the Kohler International Challenge at Road America. A beautiful track, with classic road cars, formula cars..it should be amazing. Right now they have over 1000 entries in the different classes that will be running.