Indianapolis Motor Speedway shared an extended version of the ad run only in Indiana on their website. The longer spot runs 1:17 rather than the 30 second version shown during the Super Bowl. The extended ad can be viewed at IMS.com/May. Scroll down the page a ways to find it. I will try to get it on this page tomorrow and update
So… This happened today!!! 🚴♂️ I wanted to see if I could pedal on my own before a electric stimulation session. First time on a up right bike since the accident and I could pedal it! It’s been a great week so far!! #🚴♂️ #spinbike#rehab#progresspic.twitter.com/JhHBv3PGge
We’ve come a long way from Northern Lights and Pep Boys. Izod got off to a decent start as a title sponsor, but slowed down quickly and left early. Verizon was a great partner although their track activation slowed after three years. Indycar’s new title sponsor, NTT, is a great match for the series. I’m sure there was some financial consideration, but the technological advances NTT can provide for the paddock, the series, and the fans will take all of Indycar to another level. NTT will continue the technological evolutionary path the series has chosen to take.
It was amazing how quickly this deal came together. This would not have happened in the old days of Indycar. Naming a sponsor before the season begins keeps Indycar’s credibility as a serious major racing series intact.
NTT spends $4 billion annually on research and development. I’m excited to see what the new mobile app will look like given that level of investment.
The new sponsor and the new television deal with NBC has Indycar set for an incredible 2019.
Indycar fans can always find a cloud in every silver lining. I saw a lot of complaints about the logo on social media yesterday. I don’t have a problem with it. I think it is less clunky than the Verizon logo. It has a hint of the old USAC badge. The curves help as well.
Indycar just landed what looks to be a terrific sponsor that can help grow the series and some fans just want to bash the logo. No professional sports league has a logo that blows me away and I wasn’t expecting one here. Let’s enjoy this terrific get for the series.
Miles mentioned that this sponsorship continues pursuit of Indycar as a global brand. Is this a hint at more international races? Pretty sure Australia will happen in 2020. Is a race in Japan also in line for a return?
Robin Miller of Racer Magazine wrote an interesting piece on how the deal came together. Here is the link:
On Twitter yesterday, Gateway president Chris Blair is doing what Indycar isn’t. He has offered fans who have a Chili Bowl Nationals Monday-Friday ticket stub free general admission to Coors Light Pole Night the night before Indycar’s Bommarito 500k.
Indycar has long needed a presence at the Chili Bowl. This is a great move by the best promoter in the series.
From Robin Miller’s Mailbag this morning, we now know which eight races will be on NBC network. I expected some of these and I am also disappointed by what is missing from the network lineup.
The network races- Indy GP, Indy 500, Detroit doubleheader, Road America, Mid-Ohio, Portland, and Laguna Seca.
Of course both races at IMS were expected, and I was pretty sure Road America and Laguna Seca would be on the network. I’m surprised the opener at St. Pete is not a network race. I’m also disappointed that one of the night ovals at Iowa or Gateway didn’t make the network. I never liked the idea of showing the Detroit doubleheader on NBC.
Showing the doubleheader the week after Indy means half the network schedule is taken in a three week stretch. With Road America following three weeks later, that leaves just three more spots for the rest of the season.
The biggest surprise to me is that Long Beach isn’t on the network. Having the crown Jewel of street races not on the network is a shock.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m thrilled that nearly half the schedule is on the over the air network. Maybe next season some better choices can be made.
I’m very excited to see how NBC covers the 500. If it’s anything near their Kentucky Derby coverage, it will be fantastic.
So welcome NBC and NBC Sports. I wish we didn’t have to wait until May to get the first network race.
Autosport reports this afternoon the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving has shut its doors. Bondurant began a school for race drivers in the early 60’s after an injury during a race ended his driving career. Bill Shaw, Wilbur’s son, was an instructor at the school.
Celebrities like Clint Eastwood, Tom Cruise Tim Allen, and Nicholas Cage attended the driving school. A huge number of racing drivers also took instruction there. Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon, and Rick Mears were some of the many racing starts who honed their craft at the Bondurant School.
The Chandler, Arizona, site was also the venue for the Road to Indy shootout, which now needs to find another location soon. The shootout is scheduled for December 8 and 9.
Portland, St. Pete Ticket Renewal Periods Begin
The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg and The Grand Prix of Portland have opened ticket renewal periods. Fans who purchased tickets last year can renew or change seat locations before the general public sale begins.
Miles Flying to Australia
Mark Miles is flying to Australia to investigate the possibility of Indycar returning to Surfer’s Paradise. The premiere of Queensland, Annasacia Palaszaczuk, expressed interest in hosting an Indycar race during Will Power’s trip to his homeland. Power referred her to Miles.
Surfer’s Paradise was always a fun race to watch, especially when it was the season opener.
Norman Returns to Andretti Indy Lights Ride
Ryan Norman has re-signed with Andretti Autosport for a third season in Indy Lights. Norman showed marked improvement last year. He won the pole for the Freedom 10 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and won the race at Gateway Motorsports Park after a spirited duel with Colton Herta.
Wickens Loses the Back Brace
In a new Instagram video from Robert Wickens, he discards the back brace he has worn virtually since he was injured. Here is the link to the video:
An announcement should come tomorrow (Wednesday) regard Ed Carpenter racing’s car 20 for 2019. Jordan King will not return to the road/street course schedule in the Fuzzy’s car. The team is expected to announce a partnership with Scuderis Corsa, which fielded Oriol Servia in the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500. Ed Jones, who drove for Chip Ganassi Racing in 2018, will be introduced as the driver of the shared ride. Ed Carpenter will drive the 20 on all ovals. Jones will drive a third car in the 2019 500.
The partnership with Corsa puts Oriol Servia on the sidelines once again. Servia was instrumental in getting Scuderia Corsa to the 500 last season and was looking to drive for them in a full season effort in 2019. Servia would be a good candidate for the second seat at Carlin.
The Carlin seat is one of two still open. Schmidt=Peterson has an open seat while Robert Wickens continues his recovery.
I will follow up tomorrow afternoon on the details after the announcement.
Vasser-Sullivan Joins Lexus in IMSA
Jimmy Vasser and James Sullivan, who joined forces with Dale Coyne Racing for Sebastien Bourdais’ ride, announced their entry into IMSA. They will field a Lexus in the GT Daytona class. No driver has been named. Vasser said this will not affect the Indycar portion of their program. Indycar owners have been expanding into IMSA at quite a clip lately.
Will Bourdais continue to drive foir Ganassi in the endurance races or will he switch to the Vasser-Sullivan ride?