Despite P8 result in NOLA, Rahal, RLL flying the flag for single-car IndyCar teams


AVONDALE, La. – For Graham Rahal and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, it’s good to have the opening two races of the year produce 11th and eighth place results, and be disappointed with those results.

Because the team’s performance level is such that regular top-five finishes are within range, after a much improved start to the season with its new personnel put in place.

Both in St. Petersburg and yesterday in the inaugural Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana at NOLA Motorsports Park, Rahal ran in the top five at various points in the races.

Yesterday, Rahal was on a roll early after starting 11th, consistently passing cars on the restart before he reached his highest point in the race. After one restart, he did a great job to save his No. 15 D-A Lubricant Co. Honda exiting the wet track at Turn 13, but lost a spot to Ryan Hunter-Reay.

But when most of the field peeled off to pit on Lap 33, and the few cars that opted to gamble stayed out, it took Rahal down a few places and into the eventual eighth place result.

“Just passing people in the rain, the car was really good,” Rahal told MotorSportsTalk post-race. “I got by four-five guys there. I got a couple more on the restarts. I know Hunter-Reay was complaining about me on the restart but it was just perfectly timed. Then he proceeded to block me hard the next one, which was ridiculous.

“But anyway, the car was really good. The guys did a great job. Hinchcliffe and those guys did a great job, but they were very lucky to make it. When you look at their strategy, we couldn’t do that, because we were up front and you can’t take a chance like that.”

Rahal’s father and team co-owner Bobby – whose team is renowned in IndyCar circles for its own excellent strategic calls throughout the years – noted the irony of the fact that in a crapshoot like this, running up front actually cost them in a strategy race.

“It’s frustrating but I’m sure Montoya is as frustrated as we are,” Bobby Rahal told MST. “Because of the yellows, it really rewards guys that aren’t competitive. They had nothing to lose, so they could have aggressive strategies.

“We’ve all been there. We’re up front, and then we’re trapped, then you can’t play that strategy because you have something to lose.”

Bobby Rahal also elaborated on how the chemistry and team dynamic has improved through two races. With Graham one of the best Honda runners out of the gate, it’s clear the personnel switch where he’s working directly with engineer Eddie Jones and returning crewmembers Mike Talbott and Martin Pare is paying dividends.

“I take great responsibility for how it wasn’t a good atmosphere in the team last year,” Bobby Rahal said. “Having Eddie, Martin, and Mike – we have guys that are really sharp and smart guys.

“Everyone says, ‘Oh, a single-car team can’t perform in a multi-car team environment. I think we’ve proven that’s wrong.

“Graham’s driving really well. I know as a driver, when you’re in an environment that gives you confidence, you can move mountains. That environment exists at RLL.”

Vicki Golden and 805 Beer tell a unique story from an Inverted Perspective


Vicki Golden has earned a career worthy of a thousand stories and 805 Beer tells at least one of them, as “Inverted Perspective” premiered March 30 on the company’s website and YouTube channel.

Golden did more to break the glass ceiling in SuperMotocross than she ever thought possible. She knows this because riders have never felt the need to explain any of her accomplishments with the disclaimer, “for a girl”. 

At this point in Golden’s career, she’s been the first woman to finish top 10 in AMA Arenacross Lites, the first woman to qualify in the Fast 40 in Monster Energy AMA Supercross and the first woman to compete in freestyle Moto X competition, earning a bronze medal by doing so.

Her love for moto came from childhood while she watched her dad and brother ride. By seven she was on her bike and making waves throughout Southern California. 

Golden, 30, is still madly in love with the sport and has no plans on moving away but her career is already one to talk about. 805 Beer’s film series wanted to do exactly that.

“I’m taken aback by it all,” Golden told NBC Sports about the documentary. “It’s just crazy to see your story, it’s one thing to live your life and battle everything that comes about but it’s another to just sit there and talk about it.”

805 approached Golden about the feature by asking, “Do you even realize that what you do, and your story is special?”

Golden took the question as a blank canvas to map out the highs and lows of her career and life. 

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The title “Inverted Perspective” came from a brainstorming session with Dominick Russo and it highlights Golden’s outlook on the sport of SuperMotocross and her life in general. 

“My whole life, my whole career was thinking differently and looking at things that shouldn’t be done and aren’t there, while being able to make a place for myself, where no one thought there should be a place,” Golden said.  “It’s inspiring someone to think in different ways. It sums up my life.”

Vicki Golden is not “fast for a girl”; she’s just fast. – 805 Beer

While Golden is no stranger to the spotlight, this was the first time she’s been fully involved with the storytelling and creation of a feature about herself. 

“It’s not like a full new experience,” Golden said. “Obviously, you get your standard questions about your upbringing and accomplishments, but I’ve never really put into perspective things that happened in my past with my dad and putting that to light. Also, certain other things that maybe got overlooked in previous interviews or films. I wanted to touch on these and Dom wanted to create a story. It’s just cool to see it come to light, it’s a nearly impossible thing to tell somebody’s life story in 40 minutes.”

Golden’s father was left paralyzed after an ATV accident, robbing him the opportunity to ride again. This happened a few months before the father-daughter duo was set to compete in the Loretta Lynn’s Amateur Nationals when Vicki was 12. While she might have been unable to grasp the severity at the time, it’s something she carries with her. Golden continues to ride in his honor.

Years later, an accident in 2018 nearly sidelined the then 25-year-old Vicki when a freestyle accident almost resulted in the amputation of her lower leg. 

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Golden 805 Beer
Vicki Golden has ridden a variety of disciplines in SuperMotocross, which gives her a unique perspective. – 805 Beer

“Inverted Perspective” highlights her father’s diligence in helping Vicki continue with her career and the kindness and strength he carried while fighting his own battle. 

“My dad was the entire reason that I started riding in the first place,” Golden said. “So, to honor his memory and to honor what we went through and how hard he pushed to keep our dream alive and keep everything going – in that sense then, it was really special to be able to honor him and talk about him.”

The 40-minute feature was filmed entirely in black and white, a stark contrast from the oversaturated world of motocross where the brighter the suit the easier it is for fans to find their rider and follow him in the race. By filming in monochrome Russo and Golden had the chance to focus on the race and track from a different perspective. 

“It was cool to be able to film it differently,” Golden said. “It created a challenge in the sense of what was going to be more visually impactful for the film.

“I couldn’t be here without the companies that back me but at the same time, it’s not like the logos or colors disappeared, it’s just different lights shed on different spots. It’s just a cool way to do it and to take color away and still be impactful. When you think of black and white, you think of old school, the OG way of doing things.”