Alternate title: Hey NASCAR, this is how the last 9 laps of a race should look.
First off, congrats to Juan Pablo for winning his second Indy 500. I've always been a fan of his. And wish he had had more success during his time in NASCAR. But he's back home in open wheel racing and getting it done big time. Today coming from 30th because of an incident during caution laps.
But to my alternate title thought. This season, IndyCar made some big changes to their aero package that had a dramatic effect on the racing today. The cars were able to draft successfully allowing for lots of lead changes and adding drama to the last handful of laps.
Goodyear, Cheever and Bestwick were nearly breathless talking about the strategy and repercussions of the last lap passes and marveling at Montoya's win-at-all-costs bravado at holding off challenges for the win. That's what racing is supposed to be. IndyCar has returned to that with this new design -- new aero, two chassis manufacturers . . . they've gotten away from the kit car mentality and it might just bring this long time fan back.
NASCAR should take note of this. Their premiere races are little more than 180mph traffic jams as the powers at be have decided that giant pack racing and the inherent wrecks are more exciting than daring passes and mad driving skills. Tony Stewart barked about NASCAR's new aero/hp package earlier this year and he was on point. Perhaps someone at NASCAR was watching Indy today and will take heed.
I hope so.
And congratulations once again to Juan Pablo Montoya for the exciting win!