Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Have patince, the Americans are coming

I read a bunch of tweets that always ask, "Why is an American racing series moving to a dominance by non Americans?" That may change here in the near future. The Mazda Road to Indy has given many great drivers around the world the opprotunity to showcase their skills and climb the ladder in an attempt to get to the pinacle of American open wheel, the Indycar Series. Now we (Americans) do have drivers like Graham Rahal, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti, JR Hildebrand, and Ed Carpenter. But in the last nine years, there has only been one American Indycar champion, that being Sam Hornish Jr. But man, I was looking at some of the Americans coming through the Road to Indy ranks, and all I can say is WOW. There are some talented drivers coming our way folks. Here are some of those drivers that can maybe help bring back the title for America:

Connor De Phillippi, 19 years old from San Clemente, California. In 2011, Connor raced in the Star Mazda Series. He recorded a season leading four wins and helped his team, Team Pelfrey, go on to win the championship. Connor finishsed second in the championship, and does not have a ride for 2012. It is just a matter of time though, my bet is Indy Lights for him.




Spencer Pigot, 18 years old from Pasadena, California. In 2011, Spencer raced in the USF2000 series. Driving for Andretti Autosport, Pigot recorded two wins and finished second in the championship. In 2012, Spencer will be returning to the USF2000. Spencer is a tremendous talent and has a bright future in motorsports.

Jacob Wilson, 21 years old from Crawfordsville, Indiana. In 2011, Jacob raced in the USAC series. Then out of nowhere, Jacob got a deal to race in the final two races in the Indy Lights season. In one of those races, Wilson finished in the top five. Look for him in the Indy Lights Series in 2012.

Sage Karam, 16 years old from Nazareth, Pennsylvania. In 2011, Sage raced in the Star Mazda series, where he recorded two wins, one of which I had the privledge of witnessing at Iowa, where he dominated. At only 16, Sage might get Indycar by 18, which is incredible to think about. This one has a bright future.

Nick Andries, 21 years old from Pinellas Park, Florida. Nick raced in Star Mazda in 2011 with Team Pelfrey. Despite not recording any wins, Nick had many solid runs, including four top-10 finishes. He finished third in the championship, helping his team win the team championship. No plans yet for 2012, yet being the key word.

Zach Veach, 17 years old from Stockdale, Ohio. Zach competed in USF2000 where he finished fifth in the series despite missing the first two rounds. Zach recorded an impressive ten top-5 finishes. He raced two races in Star Mazda, where he finished third at Laguna Seca. In 2012, Zach will be fulltime in Star Mazda.

Bryan Clauson, 22 years old from Sacremento, California. Bryan is an interesting story. He was destined for NASCAR, but then the winds changed and he will likely race in this years Indy 500. In six races in Indy lights in 2011, he had five top-10 finishes. He has a great future in Indycar.

There are some kick ass drivers in the list above. So, the tide could shift back to American dominance in the near future in Indycar as we have some great drivers working there way up. As George W. Bush would say,  "Go Emerica."

-Matthew Hickey  

1 comment:

  1. Great article, and nice driver profiles! Ha my favorite part was at the end though..."Emerica"....haha so awesome....

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