What is the IRL?

All about Indy Racing League (IRL)

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What is the IRL?

Postby mlittle » Thu Jun 30, 2005 11:47 am

In short, the IRL is the Indy Racing League, one of the two major open-wheel series in the United States(the other being the Champ Car World Series). The purpose of this initial thread will be as follows:

To explain, in as much detail as possible, about the IRL, the IndyCar Series, and whatever other questions anyone may have, whether its' tech-based, or about the teams w/in the series, the drivers, the tracks themselves, and so forth. Feel free to post your questions here and I'll try to answer them in the order they come in. Anyway, welcome, and enjoy.
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Postby Southernman » Fri Jul 01, 2005 4:43 pm

Well done on having this site mlittle.

What is the reaction to Toyota pulling out after the 2006 season?

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Postby mlittle » Fri Jul 01, 2005 5:08 pm

At this time, southernman, it all has to do w/the 800-pound "gorilla" in American motorsports, NASCAR. Currently, Toyota's TRD supplies several teams in the Craftsman Truck Series and, if the rumor mill is correct, may begin supplying Busch Series teams in either 2006 or 2007, w/an eventual entry into the top-level series, Nextel Cup, at that time as well. This makes sense only from a financial standpoint, as, unlike in the IRL at present, NASCAR teams are required to buy(not lease) engines from the various suppliers(Chevy, Ford, and Dodge). At least Toyota decided tp stay until the end of 06', when the current IndyCar series engine specs are withdrawn and the new(07') specs come into place.

If there are any losers in TRD's decision, it is the teams using the Toyota powerplant(except for Marlboro-Team Penske, which builds its' own Toyotas' through Ilmor Engineering), similar to Chevy which uses Cosworth-built engines at present(Chevy, at present, is planning to leave after 05' unless their one IRL team, Panther Racing, begins winning and fast). The series loses, as well, since if both Chevy and Toyota leave, Honda then becomes the sole engine supplier to the IRL, and if Honda Performance Division's director, Robert Clarke, is correct, they do not want to be the sole supplier, like Ford-Cosworth currently is in the ChampCar series. Honda's HPD thrives on competition and would not want to supply all the teams in the series. What's interesting is that, according to a story over at speedtv.com, at least one(and maybe, as many as two or three)engine builders are interested in replacing both Toyota and Chevy in 2007. Assuming Ilmor(which, unless I'm mistaken, was recently bought fully by Roger Penske) is one of them, the other two could either be Mazda, Porsche or Hyundai. While Hyundai(to me) doesn't make sense, Mazda and Porsche do.

Why? Later this year(or early 2006), Porsche will begin fielding LMP-2 class vehicles for Penske in the American Le Mans Series, while Mazda already has a purpose-built engine in use for the developmental-level Star Mazda Series, which could potentially be re-engineered for the IndyCar series. Stay tuned; the next 18-24 months could get very interesting for the IRL.
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Postby Julian Mayo » Sat Jul 02, 2005 7:58 am

And where are the Danica Pics :bounce: :bouncey: :bouncec: :?: :?: :?: :oops:
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Postby mlittle » Sat Jul 02, 2005 10:57 am

Good question, julian. The best place to see them are over at the IndyCar series's website(you probably know the website address by now) 8) Just click on the Multimedia link, then click on the photos link, and there should be a ton of photos on the page. Scroll down to the bottom half of the page; there should be plenty of photos of her and some of the other series drivers'(unless they've changed the specific set of photos there).
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Postby Julian Mayo » Sat Jul 02, 2005 11:38 am

mlittle wrote:Good question, julian. The best place to see them are over at the IndyCar series's website(you probably know the website address by now) 8) Just click on the Multimedia link, then click on the photos link, and there should be a ton of photos on the page. Scroll down to the bottom half of the page; there should be plenty of photos of her and some of the other series drivers'(unless they've changed the specific set of photos there).
I thought an enterprising sort of a fella would hve posted them in his forum to increase traffic :lol:
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Postby mlittle » Sat Jul 02, 2005 12:11 pm

I would, julian, but I have enough trouble figuring out how to upload photos from the Fuji F700 digital camera I own onto my own computer, so until I figure that out its' best to stick to the spoken word, at least until I can figure out everything first. I'm new to being a forum moderator, so I'm going to take my time and let things sort themselves out.
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Postby Julian Mayo » Sat Jul 02, 2005 12:53 pm

mlittle wrote:I would, julian, but I have enough trouble figuring out how to upload photos from the Fuji F700 digital camera I own onto my own computer, so until I figure that out its' best to stick to the spoken word, at least until I can figure out everything first. I'm new to being a forum moderator, so I'm going to take my time and let things sort themselves out.
digi what :shock: camera :?: :shock:
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Postby mlittle » Sat Jul 02, 2005 1:29 pm

Digital camera, julian. Works just like a standard film camers, but w/one distinct difference...Instead of having to take the film to a photo shop for processing, there's a 16-MB XD-Picture Card that came w/it. All that has to be done is "simply" hook up the camera to the computer's USB port, install the FinePix software that came w/the camera, and if it works as it should, you can upload any photos on the card to a photo-storage file on the computer. Now that I think of it, I should've had my nephew(who's a genius when it comes to computers and all things digital) install the darn thing last Christmas when I got the camera as a Christmas gift.

Wait a minute...what do ya' mean, digital camera, julian? :shock:
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Postby Julian Mayo » Sat Jul 02, 2005 1:52 pm

Um, my technological knowledge consists of being able to spell the word. I keep an axe for rebooting computers :lol:
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Postby JayVee » Sat Jul 02, 2005 7:37 pm

First of all great job mlittle!

Keep us informed on what happens across the pond particularly Danica, the Aussies and any driver that maybe heading to F1.

Seems that most of those jumping from the US to F1 are real characters, JV, JPM although da Matta wasn't :shock:

Anyway I have a question. I read somewhere that an Indy 500 was cancelled or postponed a few years ago due to safety concerns. Can you tells us more about that ?

Sorry for disrupting your interesting discussions with julian!!

Danica photos, yes please :wink:
I'm back and yes supporting Alonso "The Cute" in the Ferrari!

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Postby Julian Mayo » Sat Jul 02, 2005 8:42 pm

JayVee wrote:First of all great job mlittle!

Keep us informed on what happens across the pond particularly Danica, the Aussies and any driver that maybe heading to F1.

Seems that most of those jumping from the US to F1 are real characters, JV, JPM although da Matta wasn't :shock:

Anyway I have a question. I read somewhere that an Indy 500 was cancelled or postponed a few years ago due to safety concerns. Can you tells us more about that ?

Sorry for disrupting your interesting discussions with julian!!

Danica photos, yes please :wink:
Sarcasm is unbecoming for one of your calibre.
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Postby mlittle » Sun Jul 03, 2005 10:40 am

Hey, hey, julian, knock it off, man..I like her sarcasm.

Like I told julian yesterday, JayVee, until I can figure out how upload photos from elsewhere to here, I'll stick to the spoken word. I'm new to being a forum moderator, so I'm just taking my time, letting it all soak in.

BTW, Patrick qualified P1(pole) for the race at Kansas on Sunday, July 3; check out my qual. summary in the IRL race previews thread. :D
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Postby mlittle » Sun Jul 03, 2005 3:21 pm

In regards to your question about which OWR was cancelled in the States' due to safety concerns...I believe I found the answer. Back in 2001 the ChampCar series cancelled a race at Texas(the same venue the IRL races at) due to driver safety concerns--namely, the fact that the speeds the drivers were running at(230+ mph) in practice were creating dangerous "g-lock" conditions. "G-lock" is a tech term for extreme lateral g-forces exerted on the driver during a race or practice session. The risk of extreme g-lock is that, at g-forces of 4-5+ G's, drivers begin experiencing dizziness, loss of side(periphical) vision and, if they remain at those speeds, then there is the possibility of blacking out in the cars, which would have been potentially deadly for the drivers there. After months of investigating, they found that the turbo-engines used w/their 750+ hp were powering the cars way too fast for the track conditions. By comparison, the normally-aspirated IndyCar engines produce around 650+ hp and run their cars at around 215-220 mph. All-in-all, it was a very embarrasing fiasco for ChampCar, which ironically became one of the reasons for both Honda and Toyota leaving ChampCar at the end of 2002.
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Postby JayVee » Wed Jul 06, 2005 11:05 am

Yes mlittle that is the one I was talking about.

I've since done a search and found a good article about it on the ESPN site (http://espn.go.com/rpm/cart/2001/0429/1188368.html)

The article goes on talking about an even closer scenario to what we had, in 85 the Michigan race was put off because of tyres!

So the F1 at Indy wasn't the first and won't be the last. It simply wasn't managed properly.
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