Indy Lights Not Meeting Its Full Potential

Anyone noticed how much uninteresting Indy Lights has been this year? I have been impressed with a couple of drivers this year, mainly Vautier, Saavedra, and Guerrieri. But the rest of the field has been pretty sub-par. Now, there are a limited number of seats in FIL and it is understandable why some drivers are picked over others, because we cannot ignore the finance side of the sport. Deep pockets are replacing talent, which isn't to say drivers currently in FIL aren't talented, but it could be so much better. Let's take a look at some of the great drivers not in the field as a full time contender:

Stefan Wilson
Nine Top-5's in 2011, and what does he get? A swift kick in the ass. Stefan has proven that the racing DNA is inside of him as well, so he can win races in the big time. Bigger brother Justin Wilson would be a great teammate for him in Indycar. Yet he isn't in FIL in 2012 after nothing came together on the Indycar side. Are FIL teams stupid?

Anders Krohn <--- A previous blog I've done expressed my feelings about Anders. And they haven't changed. Glad he has something for Freedom 100 though. Time for him to kick ass again.

Jacob Wilson
The master of the AIRFIVE can kick ass and take names on any course. 2012 rolls around after a solid performance at Las Vegas in 2011, and nothing came together. He comes from the USAC ranks, which is a great stepping stone into FIL. Jacob can win, but he has been sidelined since the start of the season. Get him a car, and the results will follow.

Peter Dempsey 
The Irishman (who I hope to have a Guinness with one day) recorded five top-5's in 2011, in only nine starts, as he ran a limited schedule. But come on, you can't ignore the fact he succeeded in limited time. I don't know what kind of shenanigans Andretti Autosport have been running with the dumping of Wilson and Dempsey. Money isn't the issue for them.

Connor DePhillippi 
Putting my bias as a friend of Connor's aside, he should have been fulltime in Indy Lights this year. He kicked ass last year in Star Mazda with four wins, so he was ready to make the next step up, but nothing came together and now he is in Star Mazda for a whole 'nother year. So he will probably go on to kick ass every race like he did last year and then he should be in Indy Lights in 2013. But that's one whole year lost.

Solutions? Maybe Indycar can find a way to reduce the costs of FIL so it isn't such a financial burden to teams so they don't have to search for drivers with deep pockets. Also, they should provide an incentive for Indycar teams to have a team in Indy Lights, in the form of financial aid. Could you imagine if the five drivers listed above were in the field this season full time in Indy Lights? It would be incredibly competitive, as well as getting them on the door step for Indycar.

Do you think the field is as strong as it could be? Let me know what you all think.

-Matthew Hickey