Something delicious happened during the IZOD IndyCar Series race at Kansas today (won in a walk by Scott Dixon of New Zealand) that I just have to tell you about.
It is the perfect example of why you should never talk on a cellphone (or some other communications device) while in a car.
The race cars had been fired up for the start of the Road Runner Turbo Indy 300 and the drivers were waiting in pit lane for the signal to pull out.
ABC was televising the race and the colour analyst, our own Scott Goodyear, had put in a radio call to driver Dan Wheldon, whom he identified as the network’s "in-car reporter."
So Goodyear and Wheldon were chatting away when Wheldon suddenly stopped talking.
"He’s stalled the car," said Goodyear.
The field pulled out of the pits at this point and left poor Wheldon sitting there. It took between 30 seconds and a minute for Wheldon and the crew of the U.S. National Guard-sponsored car to fire it up and send poor Dan off to catch the rest of the 27-car starting lineup before the start.
We never did hear from Wheldon again during the telecast and I betcha his car owner will not allow his driver to take any more phone calls when he’s supposed to be getting ready to race.
Just another example of why, when you’re in a car, the job at hand requires your full and undivided attention.
Dario Franchitt of Scotland (and Nashville) finished second and Tony Kanaan of Brazil (and Miami) was third. Canadian Alex Tagliani of Montreal (and Las Vegas) finished eighth. Danica Patrick of Phoenix, who was the best of the four women in the race, finished 11th.