Toronto Saturday Notebook – 3

Morning skies are overcast here in Toronto with rain forecast. Practice and qualifying will be treacherous at best……With all this talk about what to do to make the racing better in IndyCar because it has become obvious that fast front-running cars get bottled up behind much slower cars, usually on an alternate fuel strategy, they have decided to open the tech rules on what has been heretofore ‘spec’ regulations by allowing teams to run different parts, configurations, etc. This will of course benefit the teams with the money to take advantage of the new ‘open regulations’ and this will result in the top teams being able to get around the cars fielded by teams that can’t afford those upgrades, etc. How about something that is much simpler and doesn’t cost any money but would absolutely achieve the result desired? Institute mandatory fuel pit stop windows like they had for a number of years in Champ Car. This would eliminate ‘off strategy’ fuel conservation runs and keep those slower cars in their ‘real’ place on the track. It would result in all drivers going as fast as they can for the entire race, as it would eliminate ‘lucky’ and ‘strategy’ runs resulting in unearned track position and finishes……..Also, in Champ Car Tony Cotman painted a white line in Toronto that drivers could not cross going into a particular corner to promote passing and it worked really well. They should consider that for this weekend's race………Attendance was way down on Friday from the Champ Car days (as much as 50%) so the initial reports we heard that there was little promotion for the race appear to be true. None of our taxicab drivers or restaurant waiters knew there was even a race in town. Yesterday it looked like it was something of a wink-wink, nudge-nudge. As in: We won't tell anybody that you were the only one here if you don't. But who's counting? There are far fewer grandstands than in the Champ Car days and the number of rows in the grandstands that remain are less as well. Mark C. reporting from Toronto

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