The State of IndyCar with Paul Tracy

Paul Tracy has enjoyed a handful of IndyCar races from the sidelines now, and offers his opinions on the state of the sport today.

Former IndyCar driver Paul Tracy said he is impressed with the racing in the series this year, but with that in mind, is baffled as to why the series has not been able to get to the forefront of the community.

Tracy won the 2003 CART title and has a total of 31 wins, 75 podiums and 25 pole positions to his credit in both CART and IndyCar.

Tracy’s last IndyCar race was in 2011, and without available cars and engines in the series he has turned the page on IndyCar to pursue seat time in a Daytona Prototype.

Paul Tracy, Dragon Racing
Paul Tracy, Dragon Racing

Photo by: Covy Moore

“I enjoy watching the racing, its been highly competitive. Its amazing to see that Penske and Ganassi haven't won a race this year and how competitive the field is,” said Tracy.

One very apparent issue in IndyCar currently is viewership. While attendances at races are good, the television coverage is sparse and does not have the reach that competitor series NASCAR has.

“The problem that IndyCar has is still no body is watching it. The racing is great, but for some reason people are not tuning into it. Something is not attracting them towards IndyCar. I don't know if its the car, lack of promotion, star quality of drivers, I don't know what it is. I have talked to many people about it,” said Tracy.

“The racing is great, its close, its unpredictable right now. But the general person sitting down on the couch on sudsy afternoon is not watching it for some reason.

Tracy said he does not know the answer.

One thing that Derrick Walker, INDYCAR’s President of Competition recently announced they hope to increase speeds of the car, as a reaction to fans opinions.

Tracy does not agree.

Pit lane has a 35 mph speed limit
Pit lane has a 35 mph speed limit

Photo by: Michael C. Johnson

“Some people are saying they want to see the cars go faster. How fast? Where is that threshold?” Asked Tracy.

“They can't let them go and run 240, there has to be insurance issues with that.”

One tactic the IndyCar Series used this season to bring in more fans is the dual race format, which made its debut in Detroit.

“I thought it was good, entertaining. I watched both races. Satrudays race was more on the conservative side. Everyone just wanted to get through that race. Sunday’s race they all went crazy,” said Tracy.

“I thought it was a good format. I think its something you can implement on an oval. You could have a Friday night race, and a Saturday night race. I thought it was good,” he said.

Lastly, Tracy’s opinion of the new DW12 chassis seems to be mirrored by many fans, as it isn’t the most attractive out there.

Car of Sebastian Saavedra, AFS Racing/Andretti Autosport Chevrolet, detail
Car of Sebastian Saavedra, AFS Racing/Andretti Autosport Chevrolet, detail

Photo by: Eric Gilbert

“The new car in my opinion, I think it could be more attractive,” said Tracy.

“I don't like the hump by the back wheel. I think if they removed those humps and made a more traditional side pod on the car, with maybe some winglets by the back wheels like the champ car used to be.”

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Paul Tracy , Eric Gilbert , Sebastian Saavedra
Teams Andretti Autosport , Dragon Racing
Article type Analysis
Tags CHAMPCAR, cart, covy moore, crash, danica, dan wheldon, holly wheldon, indycar, paul, podium, state, tracy, win