Milwaukee Mile 2015–Recap

Finally I have time to watch the TV broadcast of the race at Milwaukee. First thoughts– the crowd was good. I was at the race and have attended the last four years. It was a good crowd. The broadcast does not show that at all. When you only see the lower stands it looks terrible but I promise it wasn’t that bad.

Josef Newgarden totally controlled the first part of the race. Around Lap 19 he caught up to Ed Carpenter. There was a lot of complaining on Twitter that Ed Made it so hard for Josef to pass and then just let Ryan Briscoe by. My thought is well of course he did. He didn’t want Josef to pass as that would put him a lap down bit once Josef got by not only did Ed lose some momentum but he was officially down a lap so once you are down a lap you let the leaders go. Okay if it’s your teammate maybe you try and block Briscoe a bit to give Josef a bigger gap but Ed also could have got a bit loose during the pass by Josef and been unable to hold off Briscoe.

Helio Castroneves made a pit stop on the early end of the window to help with that last place “qualifying” position. It will help him a lot. Somehow Helio missed getting his car in line for qualifying and was not able to make a qualifying run. He started at the back of the field.

Lap 57, Briscoe had trouble in the pits with a bad air jack. So frustrating when something so simple causes a big problem. The track is so short any small mistake makes a big difference.

Lap 60, noticing that Pippa was out by this time. I get that you don’t want to have an accident if you have no chance of winning but wouldn’t it have been a good idea to leave her in and let her get some more experience. We saw Pippa post race and anyone who follows her on Twitter knows she was incredibly upset after this race. Perhaps there was a problem with her car but if there wasn’t they should have left her in and allowed her to get some more experience.

Lol- loved the Scott Dixon flashback.

Oh and now I am noticing some of the broadcast problems everyone was talking about an twitter. Just had a bit with Jon Beekhuis and it was breaking up and now Kevin Lee having the same issue. What I noticed while at the race was that the reporters were tweeting back saying they knew there was a problem and that everything possible was being done to fix the issue. Makes a huge difference when you know people are working on the problem. I do remember thinking though that this was a good race to be at so I didn’t have to deal with the bad audio.

Lap 107, Briscoe had so many problems on the pits.

I was glad that David Hobbes was in the booth helping out. He has such a passion for this race with Milwaukee being his home town and I’ve visited his car dealership the last two years for driver appearances. I wouldn’t want four people in the booth on a regular basis but I’m glad they did it for this race.

James Jakes looses an engine and Ed Carpenter has a horrible stop to get fuel. Then as everyone comes in to the pits Josef gets held up by Munoz and losses several spots. Sebastien Bourdais does not stop, we know this will put him on the way to winning but it was fun to listen to the booth about this decision and if Bourdais might be wishing he had new tires. Talked with Jimmy Vasser and he said he only had 10 Laps on his tires so they were staying out. Honestly, of course I know the outcome, but with only ten miles on the tires I would do the same thing. There was still a lot of racing left and in just a couple laps things would even out.

Again even though I know what happens I hate seeing Ryan Briscoe out of the race. Breaks my heart especially after the fun conversations we had with Briscoe over the weekend. Ryan just got loose and there wasn’t anything he could do and just like that took Will Power out too. I had Briscoe in our family bet and Zach had Power so Matthew was excited that he won with Justin Wilson.

By Lap 136 Helio made it up to eleventh position.

Watching the couple laps after going green and it is incredible racing. No one can call it pack racing but it is amazing good, close racing and this years race is so much more fun to watch than last years. Last year we watch Power win the pole and then lead most the laps before taking the checkered flag. This year is anyone’s race.

Lap 152 and Sebastien Bourdais is about 12 seconds ahead of second place Josef Newgarden. I didn’t
realize it at the time but Bourdais was having an incredible day. In five laps Boursais improved his position buy another three seconds.

Lap 158 Stefano Coletti was out. I didn’t notice this at the race.

Lap 180- Wow! What I really missed at the race was how good Bourdais was on new tires. Just passing everyone.

Lap 202- Leigh Diffey apologizes for the audio problems. At least on my end watching it on the DVR it didn’t seem as bad as I thought it would be from all the complaints on Twitter. I noticed and it was annoying but I was still able to keep up on what they were saying.

Lap 213- Bourdais pits and keeps his lead. Fantastic racing.

Hated seeing Justin Wilson have problems while at the race and still bums me out while watching at home. Justin is such a great guy.

The pits were crazy for that last stop.

I remember hating seeing Juan Pablo Montoya in second. I did not want him to win.

With 13 Laps to go and Helio is second. I was thinking how fun it would be for my boys to watch Helio climb the fence.

Sebastien Bourdais was able to keep the lead and win the race. It was a great race both in person and on TV. I love that as I continue attending races it is becoming easier for me to keep up on what is happening on track but I sure appreciate the commentary on TV.

Milwaukee is just such a fun race and the track has so much history. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this race returns for many years to come.

Sebastien Bourdais gets his 34th win. Helio is second and Rahal finishes third.

Bourdais donuts fun to watch again.





Well I hope no one minded that I wrote the recap as I watched. That was probably the only way I was going to get it done. Also, please check out an article I wrote for Next Gen Indy about why it needs to remain on the schedule.


Milwaukee IndyFest 2015– Day One

So things are a bit different at Indyfest this year and there won’t be any track activity until late Saturday. Both qualifying and the race will happen on Sunday. The boys and I still decided to begin our weekend on Friday though so we could attend some driver appearances. Having attended some last year (and had a blast) I knew it would be a great chance for a little time to actually get a chance to talk with the drivers. So our first stop was a grocery store to see Ryan Hunter-Reay.

The Sendik’s Food Mart in Greenfield was were Ryan Hunter-Reay would be. We showed up and there was no signage announcing him. We even had to ask where to find him (or if it was even the right store). The woman directed us to where she thought he was– Really– How could you not know? Anyway, we walked over and saw Ryan. No line, hardly anyone milling around, perfect, we wouldn’t be rushed at all while we talked with him a bit. Wow! I couldn’t have been more wrong. I’ve never been disappointed when meeting a driver until today. We said hello- calling Ryan by name. He asked the boys names and signed his autograph for both of them. I pulled out my ticket from this years Indy 500 for him to sign. I said something about it being kinda beat up. He didn’t say a thing. Ok I get it, he’s probably signed a million of the tickets but I thought he might at least acknowledge that we had went. He did ask the boys if they were going to the race this weekend. We responded yes and that we would be there both Saturday and Sunday. Again- good time to acknowledge that we were big time fans that really care, but no comment at all. I asked if Ryan knew what would happen if it rained. The sweet girl working said it would not rain (being optimistic). We actually talked more with her than Ryan. Ryan then made it visibly clear that we were done and I said we were looking forward to the race and it was good to meet him and we were done.

Perhaps I’m spoiled but that was so disappointing for me. I’m used to the drivers taking time and asking questions back and realizing I’m more than just an autograph hound. He truly seemed to not care. Oh and did I mention there was no one else there. No one was behind him waited to see him. We left the store feeling disappointed.

We were now on our way to the David Hobbes Honda Dealer to see Marco Andretti, Jack Hawksworth and of course David Hobbes. We drove to the dealer and arrived just at 4:00 when it started. There was a decent line to get Marco’s autograph. We waited and enjoyed talking with those around us. Marco was awesome. He was very polite and took a couple minutes to talk with us and even take a picture (not everyone was taking pictures and there were people waiting behind us). Since Marco doesn’t have a reputation for being the most talkative in the paddock I was kinda worried after our experience with Ryan but it was the complete opposite. We were thrilled. We then had to wait until David came out and then eventually Jack Hawksworth arrived. We got both their autographs. We told Jack we were huge A.J. Fans and thanked David for always hosting this event. David responded that he hoped it would continue (us too). Wow! What a difference from the session with Ryan. The boys even commented on the difference and how much nicer Marco and Jack were. Guess it wasn’t just me.

After we drove to our hotel and enjoyed a swim.

As I reflected on our day I had some thoughts.
-I was never a huge RHR fan. I thought that might change after meeting him but it didn’t.
-RHR might have been having a horrible day, I have no clue. Perhaps that is just his nature. I’m not holding anything against him but I had hoped meeting him would have been more fun.
-Marco, on the other hand, went up a couple points in my book. I’ve always been a fan but having a nice meet and greet made it even better.
-I told Marco that last year I met Josef Newgarden at the dealership and told Josef that it was just a matter of time till he got his first win and that Marco’s next win would also come shortly.
-Jack Hawksworth and David Hobbes were both great. Loved that they took time to talk with us.
-My boys are getting bigger and these trips are so precious. I’m so thankful to be able to share this with them.

Check back soon for more on our race weekend at the Milwaukee Mile.