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*IndyCar Racing Sunday, 8/5/12 on ABC 12:30 PM ET @ Mid-Ohio

Old 08-05-2012, 08:07 AM
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Thumbs up *IndyCar Racing Sunday, 8/5/12 on ABC 12:30 PM ET @ Mid-Ohio

IndyCar Racing

<LI class=whenItsOn>When it's on

August 05, 2012 12:30PM

Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio
From Lexington, Ohio.
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Old 08-05-2012, 08:12 AM
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NASCAR @ Pocono's is on ESPN @ Noon.

If you like them both you can channel chase between them.
I like the Mid Ohio Track & it should also be a great race. If Pocono rains `out, you can still
get your racing fix watching IndyCars = = = they race in the rain = = =
Plus, you don't have to have cable TV to view

Although the racing has been exceptional this year with new Dallara chassis, new Chevrolet, Honda and Lotus engines, an excellent driver corps and the inevitable grid swaps due to "unapproved engine changes," the IZOD IndyCar Series continues to tweak competition rules as though it were lacking for jaw-dropping on-circuit action.

Two races ago the series re-introduced "push to pass" for 120 seconds per race and, for this weekend's Honda Indy 200 at MId-Ohio SportsCar course, INDYCAR, the sanctioning body for the IndyCar Series is introducing a five-second delay to the overtake assist for this 85-lap contest over the 2.258-mile, 13-corner permanent road course.

This week 100 seconds will be available for drivers with a maximum use of 20 seconds per actuation. There is no recharge time between actuations, INDYCAR said.

Trevor Knowles - Anne Proffit photo

Adjusting engine mapping to facilitate the change, "After that five seconds, when the driver gets to fullthrottle or already is at full throttle, the overtake will come on. That's to stop from using it as a push to defend," said Trevor Knowles, INDYCAR's director of engine development. "They'll have to plan ahead."

The objective here appears to be a lessening of push-to-pass as a defensive tool rather than an overtaking tool, which is what it was meant to do when introduced by (then sole) engine manufacturer Honda on its normally aspirated engines. Currently it allows a driver to add turbocharger boost and additional RPMs with the press of a button on the steering wheel. The system was used in both Canadian races - Toronto and Edmonton - and will continue through INDYCAR's Sonoma and Baltimore road and street course rounds, as well.

"You can push the button before you get to the braking zone and when you get on the throttle it will be on overtake," Knowles explained. "If you're the car in front trying to defend, the TV won't show when the competitor has pushed it. It will only show when the overtake is active. If he responds, he has five seconds before his overtake cuts in."

A prominent example of how the system works this weekend is at the Keyhole on the MId-Ohio circuit. It's a long straight leading into a looping right-hand turn that connects to another straightaway. The Keyhole is 0.44 of a mile from the Turn 2 braking zone, down the straight and into the entrance of Turn 3.

The new five-second delay is intended to add surprise and strategy to the Honda Indy 200; Knowles said INDYCAR will consider, at a later time, adding an overtake lockout and recharge period, "But we didn't want to introduce too many things at one time," he said.

"IndyCar is enhancing the push-to-pass parameters this weekend with a 5 second activation delay to reduce the use of the feature in a defensive manner," said Chris Berube, Chevrolet Racing program manager for the IZOD IndyCar Series. "This should keep the racing interesting and will require more strategy from the drivers in the cockpit to make the best use of the extra boost." <!-- rendering content took 282.49001502991ms -->

Last edited by Space; 08-05-2012 at 08:38 AM.
Old 08-05-2012, 08:34 AM
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Mid-Ohio 'Hot (wet) Spots': 13 tight, twisty turns
By indycar.com staff
Published: Aug 4, 2012 @ 11:00 PM

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The 13-turn, 2.258-mile Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course is a picturesque racing facility carved out of the rolling hills of Morrow County. But don’t be fooled. It has plenty of high-speed action spots, and after a morning thunderstorm plenty of wet areas.
As the temperature this weekend has been hot, let’s take a look at the “Hot Spots” for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio:
At most racing facilities, the green flag is waved and the field roars into Turn 1. But not at Mid-Ohio, where the start/finish line is actually located at Turn 3 midway through a long straightaway out of the “Keyhole” section of the race course.
That gives the 25-car field a chance to get up to speed and get sorted out before hitting the tight right-hand Turn 4, which begins the “Esses” portion of the course. Turn 1 includes a bridge and this move was made decades ago to prevent incidents where cars could hit the bridge if something happens on the first lap.
“The pits and Turn 4 are the hot spots,” said three-time Mid-Ohio winner Scott Dixon. “With the old rule you couldn’t defend going into a turn but with the new rule you can defend. I think it takes some of the opportunities away from this track.
“It’s purposely for the start to make it clean and have a good braking zone going into Turn 4, the hairpin there. It’s visually a lot better for the fans because Turns 4, 5, 6, 7 that section everybody camps out and it’s packed there. To start the race there is a good spot. The finish is over by start/finish and it’s the only track where we start and finish in the same spot. That’s quite unique. But as a driver that doesn’t play too much. You focus on the start and the finish two totally different times. I think it is perfect for that track. For me Turn 1 with the bridge there in the new car in qualifying will be almost flat. It’s going to be crazy quick. It’s exciting. That’s going to be a tough corner. The Keyhole and Turn 2 is a 180-degree turn but it goes over a rise and is very grippy. It’s got massive grip.”
This provides a high-speed start to Sunday’s race.
“We start the race into Turn 4 and that is always a tricky place,” explained Team Penske’s Ryan Briscoe, who qualified sixth. “You can get through 4 in the starts two-wide and through five two-wide but it gets to a point in the Esses where it has to get single-file so there is often a lot of contract through the Esses there so that is an exciting place to watch on starts and restarts.”
After navigating all five turns that begin with the Esses, it’s through a short kink that is Turn 8 and then into a hard right-hand Turn 9.
“It’s the most difficult corner on the track,” Briscoe said. “It’s pretty fast, third-gear, off-camber, over a crest, blind. Helio Castroneves found that out the hard way when a car spun out on the exit what can happen. It’s a tricky corner for lap times.”
Every great road course has its unique parts of the track and Mid-Ohio has two. The first is the Keyhole, which is a very tight hairpin turn in Turn 2 followed by a long straight that resembles a key.
“This track is great,” Briscoe said. “It’s grass-roots racing but I’m used to. There is also a lot of grip and rubber that goes down. Turn 2 in the Keyhole is a passing zone for sure. You have to get through Turn 1 good and then it’s into the Keyhole. It’s either a passing zone or where you set up to pass going down the back straight. As the race goes on it gets really dirty offline there.”
A cold front moved through the area in the morning, spawning thunderstorms.
“It will be pretty interesting,” Dixon said. “All of us have run a handful of laps around here in the wet. The surface is very strange here. In the future they might want to put something down because it’s hard to get up to speed from the previous session. It’s a weird surface that only gets magnified in the rain.”
The race could feature portions of wet and dry track conditions, which will make it a guessing game by the crews when to change from the wet tires to the dry.
“It’s going to be difficult with the mixed weather,” Team Penske driver Will Power said after the winning the pole. “If this race was going to be dry the entire race I would be feeling pretty good but considering it’s wet that will change things a lot. It will be more interesting for the fans. The push-to-pass will still help because power is power. If the track dries up it really mixes everything up and will make it an interesting race for everyone.”
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