Minus One

Posted by Iannucci | 3/27/2008 | 9 comments »
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If you haven’t read this anywhere yet, well, read it here first!

Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing driver Graham Rahal, 19, will not compete in the IndyCar Series season opener this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway after his team was unable to repair damage to his car in time.

Rahal, the son of three-time CART champion and 1986 Indianapolis 500 winner Bobby Rahal, damaged one of the team's new Dallara chassis in a crash at Homestead on Tuesday night during the final day of a two-day test for Champ Car teams switching to the Indy Racing League. Because former Champ Car teams just recently took delivery of their new equipment, spare parts are at a premium. A Newman/Haas/Lanigan statement said that the team will focus on rebuilding Rahal's car for a test at Sebring International Raceway on April 1, prior to the St. Petersburg street race on April 6.

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NHL didn’t dominate Champ CART all those years by being stupid. Rahal is undoubtedly the most recognizable name on the refugee list, so even if the team were able to cobble a car together it would make little sense to throw an unproven oval driver into an untested car. Bad things can happen at Homestead, and this timeout for Graham is undoubtedly the best option for him, his team and the entire league.

Also, Champ Car fans lamented last year how Graham's age was constantly mentioned by the media, so don't feel alone if you begin to wonder if his name is in fact "Graham Rahal, 19".


  1. Carrie // March 27, 2008 11:52 AM  

    Well damn. That sucks. Just goes to show this season will probably be a complete wash for the noobs.

    But, hey, baby steps, right?

  2. Edmund // March 27, 2008 12:14 PM  

    The real question might become how many can make St Pete if we have significant damage Saturday night. If parts really are the culprit, will a couple extra days be enough to make a difference?

    Thankfully this is just growing pains, by Indy all of this should be behind us.

  3. Jeff Iannucci // March 27, 2008 12:20 PM  


    I'm sure most of those teams will be under fairly explicit orders to run wherever they need to so as not to break the car. Remember, everyone outside of the Top 5 gets paid the same no matter where they finish.

  4. Tabernerus // March 27, 2008 1:32 PM  

    I recall reading a remark by TG shortly after they announced the merger, in which he said that Dallara was really working to crank out chassis, with the influx of new teams. They would not be ready for the start of the year, but I seem to remember Kansas, and if not, then Milwaukee, being mentioned as the date of shipment. I doubt they're running into problems like this and NOT having Dallara build new tubs.

  5. mmack // March 27, 2008 1:56 PM  

    so don't feel alone if you begin to wonder if his name is in fact "Graham Rahal, 19".

    Hey nineteen

    No we can't race together
    No you can't turn at all
    Don't take me along
    When you hit the wall

  6. the american mutt // March 27, 2008 3:27 PM  


    I feel the need to once again point out Marty and Jay don't seem to have a nickname. Just sayin'

  7. Jeff Iannucci // March 27, 2008 3:29 PM  

    Jay's on the sidebar ("Hot Rod") and Marty was discussed earlier this week. Some say he goes by "The Rocket" but I prefer "Moto Marty" instead.

  8. The American Mutt // March 27, 2008 9:10 PM  

    AH...thanks for the correction. Until the tests this week I would have suggested Marty "Ryhmes with Sloth" Roth, but...

  9. Justin // March 28, 2008 3:31 AM  

    What a bunch of pussies! Bust your asses and put the damn car back together. TG should take his Dallara back, they are not trying to run the whole season as agreed to.