1997 Vancouver Thoughts
RACE: For those of you who would like to see the complete race and not have
the lap count jump by 20 every time they went to a commercial break, the
uncut version will be repeated on ESPN2 on Wednesday at 7:30pm and on ESPN
on Thursday at 2pm. Set your VCR for two hours.
TRACK: A new course will be used starting next year. It couldn't come any
sooner. Vancouver is one of the worst street circuits CART runs on, probably
second to Detroit, and the "racing" showed it.
POINTS: By now, you have all figured out that I was wrong in saying that
Zanardi only needed 6 points from this past weekend. I should have known
better not to trust the news articles. He needed 6 points more than all of
his chasers. Now, and this time I confirmed it, he needs a 6th place finish
no matter what anybody else does. And the lower de Ferran finishes and the
less bonus points he gets, the lower finish Zanardi needs to clinch. As long
as Alex comes away with a 22 point lead, it is over.
ZANARDI: Well now we know the difference between Zanardi and Gilles
Villenueve. Gilles was always praised by his fellow drivers as one who would
never put another competitor in danger. The same can not be said for Alex.
His move on Bryan Herta was nothing short of the worse you see in NASCAR.
Yes, technically he was along side Herta, but at the apex AFTER Herta
already turned in. Plus, his angle and speed was such that he had no pray
of ever making that turn even if Herta gave him room. Alex still would have
taken them both out. And his excuse making was pathetic. CART seems to
agree with me as they fined Zanardi $25,000 and put him on probation for the
remainder of the season. One more thing -- am I the only one who believes
that Zanardi did NOT have brake problems? It was just a convenient excuse?
GUGELMIN: Now we can stop hearing the reporters asking Big Mo about whether
he will ever get his first victory. Great job by Gugelmin as he finally did
the inevitable. The PacWest team will definitely be one to reckon with next
season now that both drivers have re-upped and they've tasted success.
HERTA: Bryan said it better than I could: "I'm angry about getting stuffed
into the tire barrier. Zanardi is trying to unlap himself and used the rest
of the field as pinballs. He thinks he can just run into people and nothing
will be said. It is ridiculous. He thinks he owns this series. I don't
think we should have to put up with his banzai tactics anymore. It's not the
type of behavior that a champion should be exhibiting -- unlapping yourself
by taking out the leader."
DE FERRAN: Yes, the guy is a great driver. Yes, the guy is a great person.
But, do you really want to see someone win a championship without winning a
VASSER: I missed it, but some are saying that Varsha and Sullivan mentioned
that Vasser was using his own setup for the first time this year. In the
past, he has used Zanardi's setup. Now, this might say a few things. First
of all, Vasser really is a good driver and deserved his title last year.
Most drivers don't like to use other's setups. However, it might also say
that Vasser is not very confident setting up his own car. Or, perhaps he
is so in awe with Zanardi's speed. Or, Vasser is not very bright...
FITTIPALDI: Christain, stay in the car until there is a break in traffic!
Jeepers, did you scare the hell out of me jumping out of your car with three
guys bearing down at you with their brakes locking up. And your leg is still
in a brace!
TRACY: I'm actually starting to feel sorry for the guy.
SALLES: Tough situation to be in. The team claims they have the money to
finish the season. Hopefully, that's true.
VITOLO: I just shake my head. I simply just shake my head.
HEARN: Richie Hearn has got to be the happiest guy at Vancouver. Well,
not including Gugelmin. It was announced that the Della Penna team will be
the second Swift team for 1998. Plus, Swift will be providing a 1997 chassis
for Hearn for the final event at Fontana. Now we'll see this young star
begin to shine.
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND: Goes to Gil de Ferran when asked about Zanardi's wild
race tactics: "He's doing everything he can to lose the championship."
SCHEDULE: All you need to say is "The Corkscrew." They return to Laguna
Seca and the site of "The Pass." Couple that with the actions from Vancouver,
and admit it, how many of you would love to see Herta and Zanardi running for
the lead in the waning laps? I know I do!
KENDALL: Almost deja vu from Road America. With a wet track early in the
Mosport Trans Am race, Tommy Kendall went from a fifth place (thanks to the
random starting order for the Top 5) starting position to first in just 2
laps. Then, he ran away with it. It helped that all the top contenders
either crashed, suffered mechanical problems, or had dismal pit stops
converting to slicks. Two more races to go for an unprecedented undefeated
Copyright © 1997 by Deep Throttle. All Rights Reserved.