I was hoping for the "Dan Wheldon Grand Prix of St. Petersburg", but having Turn 10 of your home track named after you is just as good.
Dan's adopted hometown gave him a memorial plaque and street name, and IMS put his face on the ticket to the Greatest Spectacle In Racing. No less than he deserved. NASCAR heads back to the Las Vegas Motor Speedway, with the tragedy of six months ago still ringing in the back of our minds. But not because of the accident itself, oh no. INDYCAR is still moving on and it's helping to remember Wheldon for all the right reasons.
From the five lap salute to the naming of Dan Wheldon Way, and everything in between, Dan's memory will forever live on. And it's the new car he helped to test and develop that may do him the best honour of all.
The DW12 chassis is striking in first appearance. It's sweeping curves and enclosed rear tyre are a whole era away from the dated IR05 and set it apart from any other open-wheeler in motor racing. And from the sounds of testing going on this week, it sounds like the cars will somewhat level the field. Top competitors have said that tuning setups are increasingly tough; Justin Wilson said it was "unlike anything he'd ever driven." The official IndyCar Youtube channel has a video has quick introduction to the new car and its features: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pklyqCw2ckE
And I hope this season is unlike anything I've ever viewed. I thought (for the most part), last year was very exciting, even with the predictable outcome. You had surprise winners, first time winners, exicting finishes, and whole lot of close racing. And you could only start in one place, and that's St. Pete on 25th March. It sure to be a barnstormer.
They say third time lucky, so I'm picking Will Power to take the title. How many times can you finish second?
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