Anchor Marty Reid Predicts Competitive Season
The IndyCar Series will kick off its 2007 season with a live, primetime telecast on ESPN2 from Homestead-Miami Speedway Saturday night at 8 p.m. ET, and ESPN lead IndyCar announcer Marty Reid predicts that fans have some exciting racing in store for them.
“I’m expecting it to be a very competitive year,” said Reid, who will work in the booth with former IndyCar Series driver Scott Goodyear. All 17 races of the IndyCar Series season will be televised by ESPN, ESPN2 or ESPN on ABC.
Reid attended the pre-season tests for the IndyCar Series at Homestead and at Daytona International Speedway and was impressed by several teams and drivers. He looks for the Andretti Green team, with drivers Tony Kanaan, Dario Franchitti, Marco Andretti and Danica Patrick, to return to the front of the field this season after experiencing an off-year last year.
“Andretti Green got caught behind last year but they’ve made huge improvements,” said Reid of the team that won only twice last year after 11 victories in 2005. “Especially, Marco, you can tell he has a full year under his belt. The driver to watch in my opinion could be Marco Andretti.”
Reid expects Team Penske, with drivers Sam Hornish and Helio Castroneves, and Target Chip Ganassi Racing, with drivers Dan Wheldon and Scott Dixon, to continue to be the teams to beat, and feels that Hornish could be even stronger than he was in 2006 when he won the Indianapolis 500 and his third IndyCar Series championship.
“If Sam Hornish continues his progress on road courses the way he showed in the test at Daytona, he could really narrow what used to be a huge gap in his road course performances,” Reid said. “He has really worked hard at it and gotten better at it. And with Mid-Ohio and Belle Isle joining the schedule this season, there’s going to be even more emphasis on the road courses.”
Reid also feels that Patrick, the IndyCar Series most popular driver, will benefit from her off-season change to the Andretti-Green team. “She gets the benefit of working with Tony Kanaan, Dario Franchitti and Marco,” said Reid. “They’ve been with that team and know how it works. I do think that she has the potential to pick up her first win this year if they can get that combination worked out.”
Joining Reid and Goodyear on the IndyCar Series telecast from Homestead-Miami Speedway will be pit reporters Jack Arute, Brienne Pedigo and Vince Welch.