Friday, August 15, 2014

Wisconsin 250 Preview

Hello Internet! It's Guido here with another Scoring Indy race preview. This week we'll be taking a look at the 2013 Milwaukee race, and comb those results for some predictive observations for this time around. Let's get to it!


2013 Milwaukee Scores

FinishDriverQual.GridLedCompletedA.R.S.
1Hunter-Reay446525077.11
2Castroneves1817025080.08
3Power33425059.35
4Viso551025060.49
5Hinchcliffe22025050.34
6Dixon1111025055.11
7Sato151510925077.61
8Franchitti1723025057.79
9Wilson1313124945.92
10Kanaan77024937.76
11Newgarden88024936.26
12Pagenaud99024935.18
13Saavadra66024827.15
14Carpenter2120024841.30
15Briscoe1918024831.82
16Rahal2324024731.44
17Kimball2221024628.01
18Jakes1212024512.00
19Beatriz2019024218.72
20Andretti11611765.59
21Vautier101001732.37
22Bourdais141401523.81
23Tagliani161601460.37
24de Silvestro24220691.60



Predictive Observations

- I've liked this "4 Drivers to Watch" idea. I'm going to stick with that.

- Ed Carpenter -- Carpenter makes this list, but not for the reasons you'd expect. As the resident Oval Maestro in the Verizon IndyCar Series, you might presume that I'd be touting Carpenter's chances. Instead, I'm recommending caution with predicting a big day for the #20. Milwaukee might be oval-shaped, but in many ways it drives like a road course. And, the numbers back me up on this. Carpenter only has 2 Top 10 performances in 9 IndyCar races at the Mile. In fact, his best ever finish is only P7. You've been warned.

- Ryan Hunter-Reay -- Andretti Autosport owns track. Well, not physically. But Andretti Sports Marketing does promote the event, and Hunter-Reay has won every race contested at Milwaukee in a DW-12 chassis. Expect no less than a solid performance from RHR.

- Takuma Sato & Graham Rahal -- Here's a two-fer for you, but these two drivers share a similar theme. Sato, as he did many times in '13 (and has in '14) ran very well. Sato, however finished back in P7, despite leading over 43% of the laps run. Rahal, on the other hand, qualified poorly, and never really got into a contending position. You'll remember, however that I leveled a similar criticism Rahal's way before Mid-Ohio, and you saw how that turned out. Let's keep an eye out to see it either driver changes their luck this time around.

- Helio Castroneves -- Finally, we turn our attention to the series championship and to Helio Castroneves. It seems that Castroneves is in the midst of what is quickly becoming a traditional late-season slump. In fact, if the season weren't designed to end by Labor Day this year, we might well call it a September Swoon. This is what makes Milwaukee an interesting race for Helio. Look back up at the score up there. Helio ran well (scoring a race-best 80.08), he also finished P2. Now, did this performance come about because of Castroneves' booming confidnece at that point in the season last year, or did it come because he's good at Milwaukee? We may well find out the answer on Sunday.


Stay Tuned

I might just trot the good old race predictions back out after qualifying this weekend. We'll see how I feel. But, to get those, as well as any and all blog updates and general thoughts, be sure to follow me @ScoringIndy on Twitter. I'll see you after the race!

-- Guido

Friday, August 8, 2014

Mid-Ohio Scores

Hello Internet! Guido here with a Scoring Indy score post. This week, we dive into the scores from the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio.Be warned ye who enter here. We're venturing into uncharted waters. Let's get to it!


2014 Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Scores

FinishDriverGridLedCompletedA.R.PRace ScoreRSWC Points
1Dixon2245907.68105.0310
2Bourdais138901.7976.526
3Hinchcliffe172905.7778.378
4Munoz40904.7656.432
5Rahal70905.0257.544
6Power60907.6149.071
7Kimball2009011.2361.775
8Briscoe1909011.0857.463
9Pagenaud90909.2142.10
10Hunter-Reay52909.5233.28
11Montoya1109010.1637.64
12Newgarden23904.8430.13
13Conway1209012.8329.04
14Aleshin1309013.1327.07
15Wilson809013.6315.71
16Hawksworth1809016.4823.52
17Huertas1009010.9116.80
18Sato2108917.9719.61
19Castroneves1508619.275.67
20Saavedra140249.257.68
21Kanaan30021.003.03
22Andretti160022.001.52


Observations

- Did you note the uncharted waters? There's Scott Dixon up there riding the Scoring Indy Bump (I mentioned him in the preview) all the way to the first-ever score of over 100 since I've been tracking these things (2012). We'll break his drive down below in "A Word on Dixon and Max Scores."

- The Scoring Indy Bump also benefited one Graham Rahal. His bump-ification was perhaps not as great as Dixon's, but a P5 finish with a 57.54 is exactly what Rahal needed to move positively toward next season.

- Now a word about the nature of racing at Mid-Ohio. There's a reason that so many drivers have an Average Running Position so close to their finishing position. That reason is that Mid-Ohio is technical and unforgiving. All of the anomalies and disparities between the two are based on strategy.


A Word on Dixon and Max Scores

Let's get esoteric!

- The way that I've set up this little quantitative system of ours, a driver earns exactly 100 points for winning a race from the pole and leading every lap.

- This means that it is technically possible (although quite difficult) to achieve a Race Score of more than 100 points, as is evident by Dixon's performance above.

- Now, because the set bench mark is not a maximum, and because part of the score calculation is based on positions gained over the course of the race, the maximum score for each event is dependent on the number of entries.

- The maximum score for would therefore be achieved by a car starting last, finishing first, and leading every lap. For a 22 car field, this number is 131.82. For 25, it jumps up to 132.00. And, if a driver were to somehow pull off this feat at the Indy 500, with its 33 car field, that driver would score a whopping 132.32.

- Now, for reference, this is (as I said before) the only score of over 100 that's been achieved since I started tracking Race Scores. There has, however, been a score of exactly 100. That occurred at the 2012 Detroit Grand Prix, and was driven by one Scott Dixon. Anyone have any questions about whether Dixie's an all-timer now?


Hall of Averages

For those of you keeping track at home, here are the average scores for the full-timers, the part timers, and the 20 Car composite, as well as the RSWC Table:

Full Time

DriverAverage Score
Power59.99
Castroneves49.66
Dixon48.35
Kanaan46.03
Pagenaud43.67
Hunter-Reay43.53
Kimball42.38
Briscoe41.15
Bourdais39.02
Montoya38.37
Wilson37.64
Hawksworth34.68
Hinchcliffe34.09
Andretti33.59
Munoz32.74
Rahal31.03
Aleshin29.78
Huertas28.62
Newgarden27.28
Saavedra22.96
Sato20.46

Part Time

DriverAverage ScoreRaces
Karam65.511
Hildebrand48.161
Carpenter47.414
Tagliani45.081
Villeneuve43.731
Davison41.471
Servia40.234
Conway31.5011
Bell31.261
Plowman25.362
Filippi18.354
Mann14.761
Montagny12.751
Lazier4.151

The 20 Car

DriverAverage Score
The 20 Car35.75


RSWC Table

DriverPointsDifference
Castroneves60--
Power52-8
Hunter-Reay47-13
Dixon46-14
Kimball39-21
Montoya35-25
Pagenaud32-28
Kanaan31-29
Bourdais26-34
Hinchcliffe26-34
Munoz22-38
Conway20-40
Hawksworth18-42
Wilson17-43
Rahal17-43
Aleshin16-44
Carpenter15-45
Andretti14-46
Newgarden14-46
Huertas12-48
Briscoe11-49
Sato9-51
Karam5-55
Saavedra3-57
Servia2-58
Busch1-59



Stay Tuned

Next week, we'll preview the ABC Supply Wisconsin 250, my home race; and get geared up for the home stretch of the IndyCar season! Be sure to follow me @ScoringIndy on Twitter for all the updates! See you next week!!

-- Guido