As I sit in my home office working from home (shoutout COVID-19, still a thing) I have the coma-inducing IndyCar season opener at Texas Motor Speedway on the TV. This race highlighted everything that is wrong with Texas’ third-best professional racing facility.
Texas Motor Speedway underwent a reconfiguration and repave in 2017 where the speedway widened Turn 1 & 2 while also lowering the banking. At the time track, President Eddie Gossage said “we’re so excited to see cars go 5-wide into Turn 1.” Yikes.
Since that comment, Texas Motor Speedway has become a single groove, one-lane race track that no longer sees the passing it used to. Saturday night’s IndyCar race was the final nail in the coffin for Texas Motor Speedway.
FIRE UP THE BULLDOZERS
Listen, there’s nothing positive about a race at Texas Motor Speedway. When’s the last time you looked at your buddy, let’s say John, and said “By god John, that was a damn good race at Eddie Gossage’s Texas Motor Speedway.”
Never. You’ve never said that because humans don’t talk like that and you’ve never seen a good race at Texas.
The last memorable thing to happen at Texas in NASCAR was when Kevin Harvick shoved Brad Keselowski into a brawl with Jeff Gordon. That was 2014 since then nothing has happened. NOTHING. It’s even worse for IndyCar, since the repave IndyCar’s race at Texas has been a shell of its former self. Saturday night only highlighted the flaws that exist with that race.
A reconfiguration that didn’t work combined with a repave that has killed multi-lane racing led to the addition of the PJ1 traction compound. NASCAR’s saving grace at times over the past few seasons has been the addition of the traction compound. Texas used it last year for NASCAR, however, they attempted to scrub the compound from the track surface before the IndyCar race. While it may have scrubbed the track was still dark thus holding more heat.
There’s no fixing Texas. It was broken before the repave, it’s irreparable post-repave. The only solution is to bulldoze the track, send the dates to Circuit of the Americas, let nature reclaim the land, and let SMI figure out their future in Texas. Build a short track. Call it the best short track in the world, or some dumbass Texas pride thing. Steepest banking in racing cause everything is bigger in Texas. Done, figured it out.
Just don’t make us suffer through more races at TMS.
Follow us on Twitter @ApexOff