Indy race was disappointing for everyone

Published 9:09 pm Friday, August 1, 2008

Last week I sang the praises of stock car racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It is still one of the three biggest and most sought after races on the NASCAR circuit, but what a huge disappointment the race was last week. Seeing a caution flag flying every 10 laps because the blasted tires wouldn’t stay together is not my idea of an enjoyable afternoon.

The tire wear issue, to me, is inexcusable. I have heard and read all week long about where blame is to be placed. Does it really matter? The fans in attendance were cheated out of a good show, the fans watching from home had to battle boredom, and the participants had to be frustrated beyond belief. The drivers were unable to drive their cars

Goodyear evidently brought an awful product to Indy and they should be held accountable. You can talk all you want about the diamond grinding of the track, the engineers at Goodyear should have been better prepared, end of story. I have never seen a blown tire do what a sorry piece of rubber did to Matt Kenseth’s car. The whole right quarter panel looked like a bomb hit it. Same with Juan Montoya.

There have been whispers in recent years of the tire sponsorship coming into play and Firestone jumping into the mix. I don’t know the particulars of NASCAR’s contract with Goodyear, but if I were Brian France or Mike Helton, I would be tightening the screws.

After the debacle was over, Jimmie Johnson was the winner for the second time in his career and went home with a cool $500K. He also jumped up one spot in the standings to fourth. Kenseth was the big loser last week dropping from eighth to 11th. As we inch closer to the 26th race of the year and the last race to drive into the top 12, things are looking too good for Brian Vickers, Ryan Newman, or Martin Truex.

For the second time in six weeks, the series travels to Pocono to race on the big triangle. The biggest reason I would like for Bruton Smith to buy this track is to move a race away from this boring place. Kasey Kahne earned the checkered flag six weeks ago and will be threat again this week, but look for Jimmie Johnson to make it two in a row.