Iowa IndyCar Primer
IndyCar is down to the home stretch of races. If you include Iowa, these are the last four races of 2015. It seems like the season just started and now we are towards the end. Let’s hope Mark Miles can fix this 5 month race schedule for 2016 like he’s stated several times.
Iowa is the smallest track on the schedule but is an action packed track. It’s produced some great races with Andretti Autosport winning the majority of races. In fact, only two teams have scored victories in Iowa with Ganassi being the other. Andretti Autosport has not had a good season, although Marco has been consistent all year and is 7th in the championship. Can Andretti Autosport pull off another win in Iowa? I think it would be a great story line to have Marco Andretti win and Graham Rahal finish second. IndyCar needs these two drivers to start winning. Casual fans recognize the name Andretti and Rahal and it will draw the national media in, if these two start battling it out for wins.
Penske has never won at Iowa, which is hard to believe. It will be interesting to see if Juan Montoya plays a safe, defensive strategy so that he doesn’t lose many points or if he stays aggressive and goes for a win. The championship is slipping away for Power and Castroneves. They need Juan to slip up here to get back in the game. Dixon seems to be the only threat to Juan winning the championship. I would enjoy seeing Montoya slip up here and finish towards the back with Dixon finishing in the top 5. Dixon and Ganassi have been great at Mid-Ohio and if Dixon is close enough for the double points race at Sonoma, my money would be on Dixon to steal the championship from Juan.
Considering all of Honda’s woes this year, Graham Rahal has been on fire! Imagine what he would have done this year if he was driving a Chevy. He could easily be the points leader. He has made the most of a challenging situation. I expect him to do well at Iowa, although his history hasn’t shown it yet. CFH Racing has had their up and downs, especially on the ovals this year. Ed is one of the most respected oval drivers in the series, but he’s looked confused on ovals this year. His results have been abysmal, while Josef has two wins on the season and 9th in the championship. Will they be able to put it together and be up front to steal a win from the super teams? Listen to what the drives have to say about Iowa:
So who are the drivers to watch for? Tony Kanaan, Marco Andretti, Graham Rahal, Scott Dixon and Josef Newgarden.
Don’t forget about the Mazda Road to Indy. In Indy Lighs, Jack Harvey and Spencer Pigot have been going at it all season long. Jack leads Spencer by 14 points with third place Ed Jones only 29 points back. Jack and Spencer both struggled at Milwaukee, which saw Felix Seralles win his first race in Lights. Jack Harvey led the first practice with teammate RC Enerson riding his exhaust fumes. This race is going to be a nail biter. Who will capitalize on this race?
In Pro Mazda, Santiago Urrutia has a 30 point lead over Neil Alberico. Santiago and Weiron Tan are at the top of the charts during practice. Neil seems to have more experience on ovals and has 1 more win this season but Santiago has hung tough and been very consistent. Timothy Buret is only 6 points behind Neil and looks to leap frog Neil in the standings. I expect this to be a back and forth race with lots of passing with Neil gaining ground on Santiago.