Five Three Stories To Remember From The 2018 IndyCar Season

As we inch closer to the finish line of another IndyCar season, we see the younger Alexander Rossi chasing the aged veteran Scott Dixon. Rossi, the 2016 Indianapolis 500 winner is chasing the four-time (five, if you include his 2003 IRL championship) IndyCar champion, Dixon. A Top Three finish in a race is considered a podium finish, so here are the stories that finish on the podium for the 2018 IndyCar season.

Hinchcliffe Bumped From The Indianapolis 500

For the first time since 2013, the Indianapolis 500 saw an entry list that exceeded the 33 spots in the starting field. This, for Indianapolis 500 die-hards meant the return of Bump Day.

The 2018 Indianapolis 500 had 35 entries for the 33 car field, and fans saw drama added to the traditional “Bump Day” in qualifying. There was some discussion among fans whether or not an IndyCar regular should be allowed to be bumped from the field. Speculation ran rampant on if there would be a driver that “buys” himself into the field.

Mother Nature added drama to this year’s Bump Day with a rain delay to qualifying for the race. IndyCar regular James Hinchcliffe had problems throughout the day adding to the drama and fears of Bump Day detractors.

With mere minutes left in qualifying, the fan favorite had yet to post a qualifying speed fast enough to enter the field. Hinchcliffe had scrapped his previous speed in favor of one last run. Less than two laps into the run, he re-entered the pits after reporting vibrations in the car.

Hinchcliffe and one-off driver Pippa Mann failed to make the 2018 Indianapolis 500.

#GetWellWickens

IndyCar rookie Robert Wickens was far from your typical rookie. Wickens, a childhood friend of James Hinchcliffe, had seen success in various racing series across the world. He entered the 2018 IndyCar season for Schmidt-Peterson Motorsports as a replacement for Russian driver Mikhail Aleshin.

Wickens second in the 2009 Formula Two Championship and 2010 GP 3 Series. After winning the 2011 Formula Renault 3.5 Series, he moved on to DTM. But despite six wins, 2016’s fourth-place finish was Wickens’ best during his six years. His only experience in Formula One was to test drive for Marussia Virgin Racing at Abu Dhabi in 2011.

The Canadian rookie’s friendship with Hinchcliffe was well documented, but for Hinchcliffe, it was more than just having a friend as a teammate. “The last thing I wanted people thinking was I just wanted my friend in the car,” Hinchcliffe told IndyStar’s Jim Ayello. “I wanted the best possible guy available, and that was Robert Wickens, no question.”

Wickens proved early on that he was worth the spot.

Wickens took the pole in the season opener in St. Petersburg and was in a position to be the first driver since Buzz Calkins in 1996 to win his IndyCar debut. Wickens had led a race-high 69 laps when Alexander Rossi made contact with him in Turn 1 on a Lap 108 restart.

In 15 races started, Wickens has four podiums and seven Top-5 finishes to go along with the pole in his debut. On the seventh lap in Pocono, Wickens survived a crash in which his car went airborne. However, he did suffer a broken neck and a spinal cord injury that ended his season prematurely.

Drivers have added stickers to their cars and helmets in support of the IndyCar rookie.

Final Race To Decide Championship

While NASCAR has formulated a playoff system to create parity in its series, IndyCar has proved once again that it doesn’t need to manufacture drama in its series. It’s the auto racing version of a Game Seven. It’s not quite winner-take-all, but it’s very close. Dixon holds the championship lead by 29 points over the younger Rossi.

Both drivers seek to end the Team Penske two-year streak in championship wins. Dixon looks to bring Chip Ganassi his eighth IndyCar title, while Rossi wants to give Andretti Autosport it’s first IndyCar championship.

Will Power has an outside chance to win Team Penske its third title in a row, but it would take a miracle for Power and Penske to achieve this.

Rossi has 10 top-five finishes and three wins this season, while Dixon also has three wins to go with finishing no worse than sixth in all but two of his races this season.

 

 

 

 

Big Second Half Dooms Lawrence Central

It was only the second true home game for the 13-time state champion Bishop Chatard Trojans and they made sure to make the most of it. The Trojans outscored Lawrence Central 24-3 in the second half to improve to 2-0 with a 34-20 victory over the Bears.

 

The Trojans looked to score early and drove the ball deep into LC territory but the drive stalled. Looking for an early touchdown, Chatard went for a fake field goal attempt but failed and was stopped by LC’s Trevon Booker.

(Note: Wrong name credited in tweet.)

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Mike Writes Sport

Welcome to MikeWritesSport.com! I wasn’t intending for a European sounding name, this is an extension to the branding I have created on Twitter. The original name was going to be Mike Writes Sports, however the last “s” exceeds the Twitter character limit by one. Thus, Mike Writes Sport was born!

This website is created as a requirement in J-541 at IUPUI. However, I plan to use this website beyond this class.

You will see videos from my coverage of IHSAA football and basketball games. I also plan to begin covering college basketball whether through game stories or aggregating news from around the NCAA. IUPUI has an up-and-coming Women’s Basketball team and I plan on trying to cover them through game stories and interviews with players and coaches.

Although I don’t have the setup for it at this exact time, I plan on beginning a podcast in the near future and those will be posted here as well.

The posts below this are stories I’ve written on an old Medium page before deciding to build a website.

Why Fire Chuck Pagano?

I don’t do as much writing here as I should. I also try not to do editorials about anything because I don’t believe I have earned that right. What makes my opinion more relevant than that of anyone else?

I was asked if there is an article on the way regarding Chuck Pagano and if he should be fired by the Indianapolis Colts. So, someone, somewhere gives slight relevance to my opinion. I also love writing, so here we go.

The Colts should not fire Chuck Pagano. Yet.

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Previewing INDYCAR Grand Prix at the Glen

The Verizon IndyCar series has returned to Watkins Glen for a second consecutive year. This comes after a five-year hiatus where low attendance and disputes over sanctioning fees caused ISC to pull the race from the IndyCar schedule after a six-year stint that included the late Justin Wilson earning Dale Coyne his first victory in racing competition in 2009.

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It Was Another Boring Brickyard 400 Until It Wasn’t

It was set up to be another arguably boring NASCAR race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It was hot, it was humid, borderline miserable outside. The weather was so bad, it’s one of the reasons that the race was being moved to September. This was the last miserable hot Brickyard 400s.

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The DW12 is ugly, but does its job

Warning: There are two videos below that show the death of drivers. They are included for context, and are NOT set on autoplay.

With all the talk of Alonso versus Ed Jones for Rookie Of The Year, and a certain twitter post from a former Denver Post; let’s take a minute to fully appreciate something that happened over the past two weeks at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Two horrific crashes, and nobody died.

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