Tuesdays with Jake: Offseason leaves plenty of time to wonder about INDYCAR


The offseason leaves me lots of time to think. Odd, because I've never been mistaken for an intellect, so my musings are nothing more than a creative writing exercise to fill vacant hours until I'm again overlooking Turn 4 and the St. Petersburg pier. 

Here goes:

* James Hinchcliffe is great on “Dancing with the Stars,” but he's just one of several dynamic personalities in the Verizon IndyCar Series. Scott Dixon has a dry wit and his wife has a gregarious and ubiquitous zest – they should have a reality show. Imagine: An Indy 500 champion, shuttling his bilingual daughters to an International school, while Dixie and his wife discuss the subtle differences of British versus Kiwi English? Ratings gold. 

Likewise, I get the impression a camera following Will Power changing a diaper would get some eyeballs. Power is a funny dude and, as laid back as he is, I think his frustration meter probably goes from 0-60 pretty quick. It'd be a hoot to watch. 

* Oriol Servia is just a cool-ass dude. I've never seen the guy in a bad mood. I mean, I'm sure I have, but I sure as hell couldn't tell. He's one of those guys that could make a reading of Dr. Zhivago a festive event. Especially, of course, if there are lots of R-r-r-r-r's to roll. 

* I know Ed Jones getting a ride is significant for the Mazda Road to Indy ladder series and its scholarship program, but I hope RC Enerson lands a gig. He was impressive in his 2016 runs. 

* People say the NFL is better when the Oakland Raiders are good or college football is better when Notre Dame wins. You know why? Because people love a proven winner they can root against, especially when that winner knows you are but doesn't care. That's why INDYCAR needs Sage Karam. 

* I watched a soccer league's championship come down to penalty kicks, which is ridiculous. Hey! Let's settle the Indy 500 with a pit stop competition. Absurd. 

* The most common question I get asked before the racing season: "What race would you most recommend attending?" Look, Long Beach and St. Pete sell themselves.

You wanna know my most common answer? Barber Motorsports Park. The grounds are immaculate and the landscape is beautiful. The museum is the finest collection of vehicles I have ever seen. In addition, the museum layout and displays are both state of the art. The best part? It's in one of the most underrated cities in America. I've been to 49 states, most major cities and Birmingham is one of my favorites. Cool vibe, sophisticated citizens, a wide array of local bars and eateries, and a minor league baseball team that played in the oldest park in the U.S. ... and housed Michael Jordan. Trust me: you'd love Birmingham.

* You know my goal before St. Pete? To get the airlines to begin boarding planes by seat letter, not zone. Think about it: all window seats board, then all middle, then all aisle. It'd take about 5 minutes. But, someone would screw it up. Probably the same guy that jumps up from Row 32 as soon as you arrive at the gate.

Veteran broadcaster Jake Query is a member of the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network team and will offer his musings Tuesdays on IndyCar.com.

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