Friday, May 19, 2017

Greatest Names in IndyCar

In the IndyCar world, when you thinking of the greatest names, you think of AJ Foyt, Mario Andretti, Rick Mears, and Al Unser. We attribute these names with greatness on the tracks. But when I think of the greatest names in IndyCar, I think a driver's literal name. Let me preface this by saying that since I have a ridiculous last name, I can't really poke fun at other peoples' last names, but I did it anyways/ Here are the greatest names in IndyCar history:


13) Ronney Householder
I'm trying to think of a way Ronney Householder could have used his last name as a scheme in some way, and the only thing I could think of was Ronney offering to be a house sitter and call it Householder's House Sitters. He did only start three races in IndyCar, but I still love the name.



12) Johnny Coogan
Remember when AJ Foyt got wrecked in the 1982 Indianapolis 500 and got back to the pits and was asked what happened and he responded 'Cooogan!'? Well, it turns out there is actually a driver with the last name of Coogan. While Foyt was referring to Kevin Cogan (short 'o'), it turns out there was an IndyCar driver named Johnny Coogan. Hopefully no one blames him for wrecking Foyt.




11) Art Bisch
Many hipsters who refuse to swear (or who just want to be trendy) say bisch instead of bitch,  so when I see the name Art Bisch, what I really see is a hipster saying 'ART, BITCH.'




10) Joe McCarthy
Well, let's just say Joe McCarthy would have suspicions / hostility towards modern day IndyCar driver Mikhail Aleshin, who is from Russia. The last thing IndyCar needs is a wave of McCarthyism.




9) Stubby Stubblefield
I am a sucker for alliterative names, and Stubby Stubblefield checks all the boxes. Despite not being his birth name, Stubby adapted the name Stubby and was quickly becoming an icon before perishing in a crash in 1935. 




8) Gary Gray
A study by a child psychologist proved that humans can read a word correctly if the first and last letters of a word remain the same, even if the middle portion of the word is scrambled. So bascilaly, if you can raed tihs, you are an abvoe aevrge huamn. Well in the case of Gary Gray, if we were to accidentally type his name Gray Gray, or Gary Gary, or Gray Gary, we would still understand whoever typed it. 




7) Al Smith
I included Al Smith for no obvious reason other than it was the most generic sounding name in the IndyCar history book. Well, maybe other than Tony George.




6) Will Power
I mean, come on, how could I not include Will Power on this list. The most modern driver on this list has a weird name. After a while, you just get used to his name being a moral rallying cry for many people around the world. 




5) Roger Rager
Good ol' Roger Rager, who last raced in IndyCar in 1982. I for one think we are missing the opportunity to have Roger Rager throw a party in the Snake Pit during the Month of May, so we could call it Roger Rager's Rager. 




4) Racin Garder
Racin Gardner. Not even Racing Gardner, no, it's Racin Gardner, as in some southern twist put on the word racing. Is there a more perfect name for a race car driver than Racin? If I had 30 people applying for a seat on my team and one of their names was Racin, I would instantly give it to him.




3) Cotton Farmer
I mean, come on, if my last name was Farmer, I would totally name my kid something cool like Pea or Rice, but you know, Cotton is just as cool. Cotton started 25 races the late 1950s and 1960s.




2) Spider Webb
Despite being named Travis Webb, he adopted the nickname Spider and it became one of those names where we forgot his name was actually Travis. Spider raced in plenty of Indy 500s in the 1950s, but his name lives on.




1) Sleepy Tripp
Sleepy Tripp sounds like a nickname for someone in San Francisco laced with drugs in the 1960s. Or the name of a drummer for Poison. Either way, Sleepy Tripp is a heroic name. He was born Ron Tripp but was known for taking naps in his car before races, thus earning him the nickname Sleepy. He adopted that as his name and went from there.


Let me know what you think!



-Matthew Hickey

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