Indycar: Texas Motor Speedway delivers smackdown to Austin USGP circuits

The IZOD Indycar series and Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) have just announced a new format for their race in Texas wit the return of the double-header. The newly named Firestone Twin 275s – formerly the Firestone 550k – will consist of two full-field 275-kilometer races (171 miles/114 laps each) with two race winners being recognized by the sanctioning body. Half points will be awarded in both races.

While most Indycar buff’s are discussing the excitement, thrills, spills and race strategy of the double-header, I am over here considering the reality that Texas Motor Speedway has just fired the first shot at Tavo Hellmund’s Austin circuit being built for the 2012 F1 race. The circuit economics most assuredly had plans for a potential Indycar race as well as other series like ALMS, and Rolex in mind. A racing haven in Texas. No thought the TMS was going to let that happen right underneath their eyes did they?

While you all contemplate just how Helio is going to attempt a full-fuel run in the first race, I’ll be over here watching Tavo Hellmund and see what the Austin circuit has in retaliation for TMS. You have to hand it to TMS for quickly acting on the situation and perhaps catching the USGP circuit folks off guard while they are busy planning infrastructure but it is survival of the fittest in circuit ownership and you can’t blame them for attempting to spice up the Indycar situation at TMS and locking them in to a long-term deal. What would the fan base feel about having three races in Texas? The likelihood is not very positive.

Ironically I have seen some comments, which I endorse, about how great it would be if TMS had an infield road course for the second race…hello? Austin GP Circuit anyone? This is a political move and a strong play by TMS in my eyes and of course I could be totally wrong but in this case, I doubt it. What do you think? I would much rather see the Indycar series at the new F1 circuit in Austin than run two goofy oval races. You mean we get to see the same race twice within a few weeks of each other with half points? Gee…that’s swell!

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