Parity reigns supreme during first four IndyCar races of 2013

1 Comment

Parity is a great word to describe how the first four IZOD IndyCar Series races of the year have played out. The on-track product IndyCar is putting out on road and street courses this year has offered up these numbers:

  • Green flag margins of victory: 1.0982 (St. Petersburg), 0.6363 (Barber), 0.3463 (Brazil)
  • 8 different podium finishers (Hinchcliffe, Castroneves, Andretti, Hunter-Reay, Dixon, Sato, Rahal, Wilson), 13 different drivers with at least one Firestone Fast Six appearance (Hunter-Reay, Viso, Hinchcliffe, Castroneves, Power, Dixon, Franchitti, Kimball, Kanaan, de Silvestro, Sato, Conway, Vautier)
  • 8 different teams in the top 10 in points (Foyt, Andretti, Penske, Ganassi, Coyne, Panther DRR, KVRT, Schmidt Hamilton)
  • 3 different race winners, 3 different polesitters, 4 different drivers with fastest race lap
  • 15 of 25 full-season drivers with at least one top-5 finish (Hunter-Reay, Castroneves, Hildebrand, Dixon, Franchitti, Kanaan, Power, Sato, Rahal, Wilson, Servia, Andretti, Hinchcliffe, Newgarden, Kimball)
  • 20 of 25 full-season drivers with at least one top-10 finish (same 15 plus Pagenaud, de Silvestro, Viso, Tagliani, Vautier)
  • Most laps led: Sato 72, Hunter-Reay 70, Castroneves 67
  • 71 points separates first (Sato, 136) from 20th (Bourdais, 65) in points. In 2012, that was 121 points after four races between Power (180) and Bourdais (59).
  • Dario Franchitti is 15th and Will Power is 18th in points. Neither has won a race in a year (Power, Brazil 2012, Franchitti, Indy 500 2012).

Reaction to INDYCAR/NBC Sports Group announcement: Mario Andretti, Roger Penske, Bobby Rahal and social media

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Like countless others on the East Coast, Mario Andretti was fighting through a snowstorm Wednesday morning.

But emotionally and personally, it was a very bright and sunny day for the legendary Indy car driver.

In an exclusive interview with, Andretti spoke in glowing terms about this morning’s announcement of a multi-year media rights partnership between INDYCAR and NBC Sports Group beginning next year.

“I think this is awesome,” Andretti said. “It’s music to my ears and all of us. NBC has been very familiar with IndyCar racing, so they’re a great partner. I’m elated that it’s all nailed down, secured and I’m looking forward to the future.

“It’s also great for the young lads in Indy Lights coming on, and it’s great for all the sponsors to have that kind of exposure. It’s a good day for INDYCAR today.”

Andretti lauded the fact that all elements of INDYCAR coverage – TV, digital and streaming – will now be under one corporate roof, so to speak.

“Personally, I think it’s huge,” Andretti said. “Everybody is going to be very familiar with everything, the storylines are going to flow perfectly from event to event. There’s nothing like continuity.

“It’s okay sometimes if you have two networks, but to me, the best possible solution is this. That’s why I think this is really a great day for INDYCAR racing to have NBC involved and the continuity is huge for us.”

MORE: NBC Sports Group, INDYCAR partner on new TV and digital rights agreement starting in 2019

MORE: Optimism abounds with new INDYCAR media partnership


Several other high-profile individuals within the IndyCar community also gave their take on Wednesday’s announcement, including statements from team owners Roger Penske and Bobby Rahal.

Roger Penske: “As an industry, we are very fortunate to have the NBC Sports Group grow their presence and coverage of INDYCAR racing and really invest in the future of the sport. We believe there is a great deal of positive momentum in the Verizon IndyCar Series right now, from the development of the new race car, to the very talented group of young drivers and new teams coming into the sport this season.

“With the announcement of the enhanced broadcast partnership with NBC, it certainly adds to the excitement for the future. We know that the ways our fans are watching races and viewing INDYCAR content is rapidly changing, so staying ahead of the curve and the developing technology with our partners is important to the growth of our sport. We look forward to working with the NBC team to continue to build INDYCAR and take the sport in new directions.

“We also need to thank ABC and ESPN for all their terrific coverage over the years. The ABC network helped bring some of the most memorable moments in racing to life – including many of our team’s Indianapolis 500 victories – and we appreciate all of their hard work and passion for INDYCAR racing.”

Bobby Rahal: “It’s great news. I think the fact that the IndyCar Series will be under one roof, so to speak, network-wise can do nothing but great things for our sport. To increase to having eight races on network TV is also great news of course.

“The quality of the NBC broadcasts have gotten better and better over the last several years. They do a great job of providing interesting and entertaining content for the viewers and I think that will only continue to grow with the relationship going forward. That type of storytelling is also what helps bring new fans to the sport.”



Follow @JerryBonkowski