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Indycar Grand Prix of Sonoma


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Poll: Deep Thoughts (19 member(s) have cast votes)

Which One Describes What You're Thinking?

  1. Why Not Sato? (9 votes [39.13%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 39.13%

  2. Why Not Natto? (3 votes [13.04%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 13.04%

  3. Why Natto Sato? (5 votes [21.74%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 21.74%

  4. What's Natto? (6 votes [26.09%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 26.09%

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#1 Jim Thurman

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 17:56

INDYCAR GRAND PRIX of SONOMA

 

Let's call this the "falling on one's sword" edition. With the new format, I'm taking one for the team. Learn from my mistakes folks, don't repeat them. koff...koff... it's growin' dim, I blame society...

 

Since I'm Having Trouble With This "New Fangled Blankety-Blank Consarn Format", you can find the Schedule and all other pertinent info linked here:

http://www.indycar.c...-Prix-Of-Sonoma

 

About The Track layout: Has it changed again?...yet?  Here's what they ran on last year:

A_layout_of_the_new_Indy_configuration_for_the_Grand_Prix_of_Sonoma.jpg

 

Ch-ch-changes, turn and face the...: With apologies to Mr. Bowie, Lucas Luhr makes his Indycar debut for RW Motorsports/Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing and Mr. Alllllmost, J.R. Hildebrand makes his return to the series, taking the wheel of the Barracuda Racing entry.  J.R. is really a local, attending high school in Larkspur, less than a half hour from the raceway.

 

History stuff: Down the hill and up the road, Sonoma was where the California Republic (http://en.wikipedia....fornia_Republic ) was born. It's where the "bear flag" was first raised. Did you know that? It's true!

 

History stuff with a racing angle: The closest town, hamlet, whatevs, to the track itself is a little place called Schellville. It's named after the ancestors of Harry Schell, a Franco-American F1 racer ( http://en.wikipedia..../Harry_Schell ), whose parents ran a bar in Paris pre-World War II and rubbed elbows with some guy named Hemingway and fellow literati.

 

Local stuff: While Sonoma is known for it's wine and vineyards, it's more down-to-earth and less hoity-toity than the Napa Valley (which also has it's share of non-upscale). Yes, you can find fancy eateries, but you can also find chili and cherry cider very near the track.

 

Local Racing History stuff: Just below the runway of Sonoma Valley Airport, south of Schellville, are the remains of a crude 1/5 mile dirt oval, Schellville Speedway. The club run track raced motorcycle engine powered midgets in the late 1970s. It's so obscure, I think I'm the only person who didn't race there or live in the area that knows about it. Past that, aside from the big raceway, the area hasn't had much of a racing history.

 

About The Track's History: A couple of area businessmen built the track, which opened in late 1968. Filmways, then a big TV production company, and a construction company had been shut out of Ontario Motor Speedway. So, they headed north and bought the track. A rumored oval never materialized. In a bizarre twist, Sears Point International Raceway and Ontario Motor Speedway both closed the same week, only to re-open. The raceway passed through several hands before Bruton Smith and his SMI bought the track and managed to overcome the raceway's opponents and renovate and expand the facility (Hmm, how did he do that?).  After a sponsor related name, the track is now known as Sonoma Raceway.

 

Indy Type History: The first Indy Car race was the USAC sanctioned "Golden Gate 150" held on April 4, 1970. http://www.youtube.c...h?v=X6VzOVn2hEs   It was a good one folks.

 

Really Random Trivia: California State Highway 37, between Sears Point and Vallejo, across the marshes alongside San Pablo Bay offers a spectacular view (especially at night) - from near water level - of San Francisco rising out of the water in the distance. And the highway used to have a "suicide lane" - one lane each direction with a common middle lane for overtaking. Yeah...

 

 

 

 

 



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#2 Andrew Hope

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 18:09

I feel as though I've learned so many things from this post already. And if you'd like to learn more about suicide lanes, check out Wikipedia's explanation and list of them.

 

I quite like Sonoma. It looks much prettier in the spring too, and you can even find a date:

 

sheep2-cgraves.jpg

 

Spotter guide is out: of note, Graham Rahal in red/white this week, Dario the same for once, Tristan Vautier running some sort of duck scheme, and Lucas Luhr in grey/black/blue. Everything else seems normal.

 

44d6.jpg


Edited by Andrew Hope, 23 August 2013 - 18:20.


#3 PayasYouRace

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 18:15

Thanks for doing the OP Jim  :up:



#4 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 18:21

Yeah, why don't more series race Laguna/Sonoma during spring when it's pretty and makes you want to visit? 



#5 Risil

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 20:22

History stuff with a racing angle: The closest town, hamlet, whatevs, to the track itself is a little place called Schellville. It's named after the ancestors of Harry Schell, a Franco-American F1 racer ( http://en.wikipedia..../Harry_Schell ), whose parents ran a bar in Paris pre-World War II and rubbed elbows with some guy named Hemingway and fellow literati.
 
Awesome! :D

Thanks for this Jim.That Golden Gate 150 footage is priceless -- I think I've got that whole 1970 USAC season review on my computer somewhere. If anyone's got any info about how that footage came to be and how it was distributed I'd like to hear it.

And yeah. Safe posting everyone. Don't let the high contrast burn your eyes. And ix-nay on Ontoya-May.


#6 rghojai

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 21:31

Some bumper stickers in the area say Sonoma is for wine, Napa is for car parts.



#7 froggy22

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 21:38

Looks nice in the spring. Ive never seen a picture of the track with green grass before



#8 Deluxx

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 21:41

I quite like Sonoma. It looks much prettier in the spring too, and you can even find a date:

Are you calling me a sheep

#9 Prost1997T

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 21:50

Interesting that Luhr is still off pace after 260km in an Indycar. He hasn't cracked the 1:20 barrier in any session yet.



#10 Deluxx

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 22:31

Who's he driving for again? Forgot

#11 Andrew Hope

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 22:32

Are you calling me a sheep

I'm saying the love of a sheep is ironically unique.



#12 Prost1997T

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 22:48

Who's he driving for again? Forgot

 

Sarah Fisher. RW Motorsports are supporting the entry.



#13 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 23:22

I think it's his ALMS engineer though?



#14 Magoo

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 00:13

I think it's his ALMS engineer though?

 

Brandon Fry. Has a ton of Indy car experience but not with the current chassis, I don't think. 



#15 Magoo

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 00:25

Eat here 
Tony's Oyster Shack 
18863 California 1 
Marshall CA 


#16 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 11:09

Brandon Fry. Has a ton of Indy car experience but not with the current chassis, I don't think. 

 

Yeah, so while a Fisher car and mechanics(?) the guys making it go fast are starting way behind.



#17 Jimisgod

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 12:34

We need more fun F1 race threads.

#18 Risil

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 14:04

"I thought I was completely lost but if these guys are having the same troubles then I'm happy," [Luhr] said. "I got out of the car and said, 'I can't be that dumb'.

 

"It's the same for everybody, so you just have to make the best car you can for race day."

 

"[The last time I raced at Sonoma] was in a GT car, so it's like comparing a 747 against an F16 or something," he said.

 

"And the track was different. And it was 10 years ago, and my memory is not that good."

 

I like this Lucas Luhr chap.


Edited by Risil, 24 August 2013 - 14:05.


#19 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 14:38

So why did they put in a guy who hasn't raced single seaters since the late 90s and hasn't been to Sonoma for a decade and hasn't really had top, top line experience(let's be fair, driving P1 in the ALMS lately isn't the hardest drive in the world).

 

It almost makes more sense as a live-test of how hard it would be for the Pickett ALMS team to transition to Indycar.



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#20 Risil

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 15:27

It almost makes more sense as a live-test of how hard it would be for the Pickett ALMS team to transition to Indycar.

 

10 points to Stonefeld

 

Is Pickett still saying that a combined LMP2/DP series holds no interest for him?


Edited by Risil, 24 August 2013 - 15:29.


#21 OfficeLinebacker

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 16:13

Natto (sometimes spelled Nattou for those that are Googling) is delicious.  I'll always ask in a sushi place if they have Natto.  I don't always get it, though, cos it's expensive.

 

Lately I've been experimenting with Tempeh which is different and Indonesian, I believe.

 

For those who don't feel like searching, Natto is fermented soybeans, it's kind of the Vegemite of Japan.

 

I lived in Japan for 5 years growing up. (ages 1-6).



#22 anbeck

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 19:44

At least Luhr was closer to Newgarden in final practice, that's probably all they are hoping for.

 

But why Luhr? If you'd let me freely associate, I'd ask whether Luhr is still connected to Audi/Porsche/etc. in some way, and whether they want to build an IndyCar engine after all and go there with Pickett. 



#23 Prost1997T

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 21:45

Pagenaud, Power, Wilson, Hinchcliffe, Rahal, Castroneves advance from the first qualifying group. Simona de Silvestro will be disappointed with qualifying at the back.

 

Franchitti, Dixon, Kimball, Hunter-Reay, Bourdais, Andretti are in from the second group.

 

Power, Dixon, Franchitti, Kimball, Hunter-Reay and Castroneves reach the Fast Six.


Edited by Prost1997T, 24 August 2013 - 22:17.


#24 Risil

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 22:42

Who did Luhr beat?



#25 Prost1997T

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Posted 24 August 2013 - 23:00

Who did Luhr beat?

 

Nobody. Carpenter set a 1:19.2, de Silvestro 1:19.5 and Luhr was 1:19.9. The odd-even setup for groups 1 and 2 puts De Silvestro P23, Carpenter P24 and Luhr has row 13 to himself.


Edited by Prost1997T, 24 August 2013 - 23:04.


#26 Victor_RO

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 07:57

10 points to Stonefeld

 

Is Pickett still saying that a combined LMP2/DP series holds no interest for him?

 

He's more likely to move his team to Indycar or the WEC than going into USCR, he's not a fan of the DPs to put it lightly.

 

At least Luhr was closer to Newgarden in final practice, that's probably all they are hoping for.

 

But why Luhr? If you'd let me freely associate, I'd ask whether Luhr is still connected to Audi/Porsche/etc. in some way, and whether they want to build an IndyCar engine after all and go there with Pickett. 

 

Those connections are all in the past, Luhr has been a free agent in that respect (sort of) since 2010 I think.



#27 Jim Thurman

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 15:55

This one for jp...

 

Forgot another bit of track history. Around it's first anniversary, it was going to host a big concert. The stage was set up and everything, but problems arose (I think permits were denied), so the concert was moved at the last minute to another - much smaller - raceway. How did that go? Not well. Really, really not well at all:

http://www.youtube.c...JvyvgPtN4#t=212


Edited by Jim Thurman, 25 August 2013 - 16:02.


#28 Andrew Hope

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 15:57

4 hours to go!

 

Why not Sato?


Edited by Andrew Hope, 25 August 2013 - 15:59.


#29 SR388

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 17:32

I'll watch. 



#30 jonpollak

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 17:40

This one for jp...

 

Forgot another bit of track history. Around it's first anniversary, it was going to host a big concert. The stage was set up and everything, but problems arose (I think permits were denied), so the concert was moved at the last minute to another - much smaller - raceway. How did that go? Not well. Really, really not well at all:

http://www.youtube.c...JvyvgPtN4#t=212

 

 

 

Ahh yes...Woodstock West.

That was the end of Flower Power as we know it.

There are STILL rumors that the money from this gig was sent overseas and placed in an African holding account.

 

I reckon,these days, it would be worth around....

48LODKP.jpg

Jp


Edited by jonpollak, 25 August 2013 - 17:52.


#31 greenman

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 19:31

So I take it the green flag drops in about an hour? 



#32 Andrew Hope

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 19:56

IndyCar website says green flies at 4pm EST, which means a little after 4:30.



#33 Prost1997T

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:06

I'm rooting for Scott Dixon.



#34 OvDrone

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:08

Man, what a brutal shunt from Helio in his natal stock cars :eek:



#35 Prost1997T

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:10

Man, what a brutal shunt from Helio in his natal stock cars :eek:

 

That's what happens when your brakes fail at high speed. Doesn't seem to have slowed him down much, he qualified 5th.



#36 OvDrone

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:11

Wouldn't mind him being champ to be honest.



#37 greenman

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:14

I'm rooting for Will Power. Because, you know, you can't go wrong with him.

 

Also, Sato. Why not.



#38 jonpollak

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:24

Peter Fonda?
Jp

#39 Vitesse2

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:30

Peter Fonda?
Jp

I was wondering about that too!

 

DC was remarking how few people there were on the grid at Spa. They all seem to be in Sonoma!



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#40 billm99uk

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:32

Luhr is certainly making Alexander Sims win today in GP3 look pretty impressive. Though I suppose he has a little more recent experience in open wheel stuff.



#41 Andrew Hope

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:34

$10/shirt. Payment acceptable in clumps of Nigerian dirt and Zimbabwean invisidollars.

 

1r72.jpg



#42 Risil

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:36

$10/shirt. Payment acceptable in clumps of Nigerian dirt and Zimbabwean invisidollars.

 

1r72.jpg

 

This needs to happen.



#43 expert

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:36

More people on the grid than in the stand



#44 expert

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:37

(maybe they're just returning to their seats)



#45 expert

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:38

Going to log on to Shop Honda and have a chance to make an ass of myself on NBC



#46 OvDrone

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:39

:rotfl:  that dude in the two seater



#47 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:39

Luhr is certainly making Alexander Sims win today in GP3 look pretty impressive. Though I suppose he has a little more recent experience in open wheel stuff.

 

I think it's very different when one guy doesn't have a lot of open wheel experience and makes a mid-season appearance against guys who have been doing it for a very long time, and a driver with lots of open wheel experience making a mid-season appearance against guys with less experience than him.



#48 SR388

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:39

Pulling for Sato, because I am an idiot.



#49 SR388

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:40

:rotfl:  that dude in the two seater

I think he was stoned.



#50 OvDrone

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Posted 25 August 2013 - 20:41

I think he was stoned.

 shake and bake, boys