Sao Paulo is in the books and despite the myriad many obstacles conspiring to obfuscate, the race itself was quite enjoyable to watch. I will summarize my fave part of the race and issue yellow flags (issues of concern), red flags (lowlights), and green flags (highlights) for other points of note.
It’s no secret that I am an oval fan primarily, but I was particularly impressed with the amount of actual passing and racing going on the track itself. The drivers and fans by most all accounts seemed to have the same opinion, leaving me with no choice but to be more open to street courses (properly done) as a viable venue for IndyCar. I much prefer the rolling and scenic nature of the road course to city streets, but not always are roads the best option for tracks that turn right as well as left (I will say that I plan to maintain great disdain for airport circuits, when American classics like Road America or Laguna Seca are not employed).
As for the track action itself, many interesting stories emerged, but to me the defining moment of the race was when 2nd place Ryan Hunter-Reay and 3rd Will Power (who was fighting to overcome severe hand blisters) applied enough pressure on leader Ryan Briscoe to lapse slightly in concentration and slide into the tire barrier at the end of the long back straight. Hunter-Reay lead for several laps following and then it was Power’s turn to make a classic pass under late braking for the lead with 2 laps to go.
– Mario Moraes not coming out and admitting his mistake right away.
– Subpar TV production quality (some things out of VS control I understand, others like announcers talking over each other, not).
– Jack Arute trying to be funny. Just analyze, don’t try to be all things.
– Pop-up terrential thunderstorms.
– No back up power systems for race control.
– First lap, first corner wrecks. Come on people.
– Simona DeSilvestro leading for several laps.
– Seeing 7 different teams in the top 10.
– Brazil’s fans supporting and enjoying the race.
– Brazil’s track people working to grind the concrete deep into the night
– Everyone racing cleanly (from what I saw).
Enjoyable street race? Yes, I guess it was.
Race won on the track and not in the pits? Awesome!
Mind opened slightly again? Yes.
The older I get, the less I realize that I know.