Mikhail Aleshin, James Hinchcliffe help make Rev Indy a big success


You know, if this whole IndyCar deal doesn’t work out, IndyCar driver Mikhail Aleshin may have a future as a rock star.

Aleshin stole the show this past Saturday at the third annual Rev Indy, a combination party and fundraiser to kick off the month’s festivities at Indianapolis Motor Speedway leading up to the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 29.

Funds raised from the event go to support Indiana University Health trauma programs, as well as medical services for drivers at the IU Health Emergency Medical Center at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Aleshin hopped up on stage, picked up a guitar and then proceeded to rock out to “Wild Thing” and “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” backed by Tim Buckley and the Bleeding Hearts.

Wearing shades, Aleshin totally looked the part of a rocker, singing harmony, throwing in a few lip pouts like Mick Jagger, taking over on lead guitar and doing a few windmill chords in the spirit made famous by The Who’s Pete Townsend. He even played the guitar behind his head!

Virtually every driver in the Verizon IndyCar Series was on hand, along with special guests including quarterback Andrew Luck and long snapper Matt Overton of the Indianapolis Colts and Butler University mascot Butler Blue.

Click here to check out the photo gallery from the Speedway’s web site.

“Another year and another incredible Rev event! Carol (Rev event director Carol Howard) and her team, everyone at IU Health and everyone at IMS pulled off such a great night,” driver James Hinchcliffe said in an IMS media release.

Hinchcliffe – who was Honorary Chairman of Rev Indy – reportedyl displayed quite the impressive dance form, jamming to the music.

“I can’t thank all of them – all the local businesses and restaurants and everyone who came out and supported – enough for making Rev the must-attend event of May and maybe even the year,” Hinchcliffe said.“It was a privilege to be part of it all. Hopefully, I’ll be invited back next year!”

Of course, the event was played up big on social media. Here’s some of the best tweets we found:

Follow @JerryBonkowski

Starting lineup grid for IMSA Petit Le Mans: Tom Blomqvist puts MSR on pole position

Petit Le Mans lineup

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship contender Tom Blomqvist put the Meyer Shank Racing Acura at the front of the starting lineup for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta.

Blomqvist turned a 1-minute, 8.55-second lap on the 2.54-mile circuit Friday to capture his third pole position for MSR this season. Earl Bamber qualified second in the No. 02 Cadillac for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Ricky Taylor was third in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing, which enters Saturday’s season finale with a 19-point lead over the No. 60 of Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves) for the 10-hour race.

PETIT LE MANS STARTING GRID: Click here for the starting lineup l Lineup by car number

PETIT LE MANS: Info on how to watch

With the pole, MSR sliced the deficit to 14 points behind WTR, which will field the trio of Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque and Brendon Hartley in Saturday’s race.

“We really needed to put the car in this kind of position,” Blomqvist said. “It makes our life a little less stressful tomorrow. It would have given the No. 10 a bit more breathing space. It’s going to be a proper dogfight tomorrow. The guys gave me such a great car. It’s been fantastic this week so far, and it really came alive. I’m hugely thankful to the boys and girls at MSR for giving me the wagon today to execute my job.

“That was a big effort from me. I knew how important it was. It’s just awesome for the guys to give them some sort of reward as well. It’s always nice to be quick. If you do the pole, you know you’ve got a quick car.”

Though WTR has a series-leading four victories with the No. 10, MSR won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has five runner-up finishes along with its three poles.

The strong performances of the ARX-05s ensure that an Acura will win the final championship in IMSA’s premier Daytona Prototype international (DPi) division, which is being rebranded as Grand Touring Prototype in the move to LMDh cars next season.

Taylor qualified third despite sliding into the Turn 5 gravel during the closing minutes of qualifying while pushing to gain points.

“Qualifying was important for points,” Taylor said. “Going into it, if we outqualified the No. 60 Meyer Shank Acura, they had a lot to lose in terms of championship points. So, we were trying to increase the gap over 20 points which would’ve made a big difference for tomorrow. We would have loved to get the pole and qualify ahead of the No. 60, but in the scheme of the points, it didn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling good since it’s such a long race, and the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura team does such a good job strategizing and putting us in a good position.

“I’m very confident in our lineup and our team compared to them over the course of 10 hours. I’d put my two teammates up against those guys any day. I think we are all feeling optimistic and strong for tomorrow.”

In other divisions, PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports (LMP2), Riley Motorsports (LMP3), VasserSullivan (GTD Pro) and Paul Miller Racing (GTD) captured pole positions.

The broadcast of the 10-hour race will begin Saturday at 12:10 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 3 p.m. to USA Network.



Results by class

Fastest lap by driver

Fastest lap by driver after qualifying

Fastest lap by driver and class after qualifying

Fastest lap sequence in qualifying

Best sector times in qualifying

Time cards in qualifying

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II l Session III