Friday, March 21, 2014


2013 Review: Just when it appeared long-time Penske pilot Helio Castroneves would break through and win his first series championship, mechanical woes at the Houston Grand Prix doubleheader weekend allowed Scott Dixon to pass him and edge him by 23 points in the season standings. All in all, despite just winning one race (Texas) it was a very consistent season for Helio with 6 Top 5's and 17 Top 10's. Will Power didn't have the year we've seen from him in the past, but did notch a win in the Houston doubleheader weekend and rallied to finish 4th in the final season standings. AJ Allmendinger drove in select races for the Captain, notching a best finish of 7th at Indianapolis.

2014 Changes: Roger Penske returns to 3 full-time entries as Juan Pablo Montoya returns to open wheel. The 1999 CART champion has spent the last several years driving in NASCAR. Montoya comes to an already stout lineup with Castroneves and Power. Montoya will pilot the #2 DW-Chevy with Verizon colors for half the races. Power will feature Verizon livery on his #12 DW-Chevy. Castroneves will carry different paint schemes on his traditional #3 DW-Chevy, with Hitachi and Shell being the most frequent.

2014 Forecast: It has long been thought of as Penske being the gold standard, but ever since he moved full-time to Indycar from CART in 2002, he has just ONE series championship (2006 with Sam Hornish Jr.) Yes, his cars will be in the hunt at Indy and for the season title, but they haven't been able to finish, with '13 the latest in a long line. The addition of Montoya to a already stout lineup with one of the most savvy racers at Indy (Castroneves) and perhaps the best road / street course racer in the series (Power) makes Penske a strong contender to break their title well as their 500 drought (5 years since his last win.) Will they? We shall see, Target-Ganassi will have something to say as will our next team up in the preview....Andretti Autosport

You can follow me on Twitter @BobPotosky

Thursday, March 20, 2014


2013 Review: It was a mix of highs and lows for the championship race team. Veteran driver Dario Franchitti went winless and ultimately suffered career-ending injuries in an accident at the second half of the Houston Grand Prix doubleheader weekend.. Third year driver Charlie Kimball broke through and captured his first career win at Mid-Ohio. The biggest high of the season came from veteran Scott Dixon, who overcame a slow start and captured his third series title in 10 years winning four races in the second half of the year. Ryan Briscoe drove at Indy for TCGR and finished 13th. Alex Tagliani filled in for Franchitti in the season's final race at Fontana

2014 Changes: For the first time since 2012, TCGR is back to four full-time entries. A switch from Honda to Chevrolet power is already a major change. But with the retirement of Franchitti, Ganassi has added defending Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan to this year's team. Initially signed to drive the NTT Data #8 DW12-Chevy, Kanaan will pilot one of the two Target entries, driving car #10. Scott Dixon returns in the #9 Target DW12-Chevy. Charlie Kimball is back for his 4th year in the #83 Novo Nordisk DW12-Chevy after finishing a career-best 9th in the point standings in 2013. Briscoe will join TCGR full-time in the #8 NTT Data DW12-Chevy to complete the '14 lineup.

2014 Forecast: When you see the word excellence in the racing vocabulary, there's a good chance you'll see a Target car next to the description. In their last 18 years of competition between CART and Indycar, TCGR has claimed 10 season titles and four Indy 500 wins. The switch to Chevy power will be interesting to see as they now have the same package as rival Team Penske. 2013 was an aberration of sorts for TCGR at Indy in seeing they were a non-factor. Look for them to again be in the mix at the Brickyard. As far as the season goes, Dixon will continue to be consistent. Kanaan has arguably the best car of his career. Kimball looks to continue his climb up the point standings, and Briscoe after a year away from full-time status, looks to be hungry and raise his game to join his teammates to compete for wins and the championship

Tuesday, March 18, 2014


The Verizon IndyCar Series completed two days of testing at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama, and Will Power topped the charts on both days.

The pilot of Team Penske's #12 Verizon DW-Chevy clocked a lap in the 1:07 range on both days, a speed of 123.470 MPH. Justin Wilson from Dale Coyne racing was second on the speed charts just 0.034 seconds behind Power.

Defending series champ Scott Dixon, Takuma Sato and Ryan Briscoe rounded out the top 5.

In all, nearly 1300 laps were turned in today's session with 22 drivers getting their feet wet. The 2014 season is right around the corner with the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg coming up the weekend after next.

Starting on Thursday, I'll start previewing the teams and drivers that will compete for the 2014 series championship.

Monday, March 17, 2014


Gary Bettenhausen, a starter in the Indy 500 21 times, passed away on Sunday at the age of 72.

Part of one of the most famous, yet star-crossed families in Brickyard history, Bettenhausen for many years tried to complete his family's quest for victory in the 500, but never came to fuition.

His father, Tony, was killed in a practice crash for the 1961 race. His brother, Tony Jr. was a former CART owner who was killed in a plane crash on route to the 2000 season opener in Homestead FL. His other brother Merle has hurt in a fiery sprint car crash.

Bettenhausen's closest call with victory in the 500 came in 1972. Driving for Roger Penske, Bettenhausen dominated, leading 138 laps. With 24 laps to go, he suffered engine problems and dropped out. Bettenahusen;s teammate in '72, Mark Donohue would go on to win. Bettenhausen's best finish at Indy was a 3rd in 1980 after starting in the last row.

Bettenhausen was perhaps best know for his dirt track / short track skills. He won multiple USAC titles in sprint and Silver Crown cars.

Bettenhausen was born in Tinley Park IL, and resided in Monrovia IN. He will be missed,

Friday, March 14, 2014


Indycar will have a new partner. On Friday, Verizon was announced as the presenting title sponsor for America's premier open-wheel racing series.

Terms were not disclosed as of Friday morning. Verizon already has a presence in Indycar with Roger Penske's operation. Verizon has been on board Will Power's #12 entry since 2009, and will also appear in nearly half the races in Juan Pablo Montoya's return to open wheel in Penske's #2 Dallara-Chevrolet this year.

Verizon succeeds IZOD as the series title sponsor.
Greetings fellow race fans. Welcome to Poto's Moto Blog. Basically,I will be talking about the greatest form of racing on the planet....INDYCAR (perhaps some F1....if you're looking for NASCAR....just go away now, I will not be talking Cabs here, plenty of other outlets for those folks.)

A little bit of background on me....I have been involved in broadcasting (high school sports about 99% of the time since 1997., dabbled in some college hoops for a bit). You name it, there's a good chance I have broadcast it; football, basketball, baseball, volleyball, hockey. For more info on that side of my life, check out (Of course, you know that because the link to here is through there!)

All of my life, one of my biggest passions has been open-wheel racing. I have always thought the Indianapolis 500 has been one of the preeminent events in the world of sport. Any event that can draw north of a quarter-million people on a parcel of land on the Northwest side of Indianapolis in a little town called Speedway, get the picture. My first memory I have of Indy was the '82 finish between Gordon Johncock and Rick Mears. As a youngster, i just was so crushed to see Rick come up short at the end by 0.16 seconds to Gordy (of course, my near-8-year-old self didn't know at the time that both men had already won the Greatest Spectacle in Racing), but growing up, Rick Mears was who i wanted to be...calm, cool, patient, fast.

Since that time, the sport, like life, has evolved. Some for the good, some not. Again, I will post news, analysis and thoughts, and always, the views expressed are not necessarily the views on Mid America Broadcasting LLC, they are my own.

All righty.....there's the ice breaker. Now let the blogging begin!