Round Three – Long Beach

Here’s the thing about Long Beach: The ‘Slightly Off Track’ blog practically writes itself at that place and it’s generally not G-rated. It’s the only race weekend where you can safely bet your life savings that you’ll see skin, booze and (if you’re not too busy with skin and booze), some great racing.

For those of you who don’t like to walk on the wild side, let me remind you to do as the IndyCar teams do and experience life’s other pleasure: In-N-Out Burger. With that, I’d like to send a special shout-out (and apology) to my arteries.

You may have heard about the monsoon we experienced on Friday at the track. Two great things came out of that deluge: 1. It was Friday the 13th, which gave me an idea to do an upcoming blog about racetrack superstitions. 2. When you add rain to the kind of outfits (and makeup) you see at Long Beach, the entertainment level gets kicked into high gear. It ain’t pretty, but it sure is AWESOME.

It felt like we managed to run a whopping three laps during practice on Saturday. As a reference point, that amount of red and green is usually only found at the Griswold family Christmas. “That’s all part of the experience, honey.”

One of the most entertaining parts of the weekend continues to be the Barracuda Racing Tweetup. If you’re following Tag on twitter (@tagliani), you’ve probably gotten a glimpse into his highly-intense and comical personality. And as those who’ve attended Tweetups can attest to, his character and passion really shine when he gets to interact with the fans. He says exactly what he’s thinking and since the fans get to ask the questions, it makes for some hilarious moments. From giving one little boy the third degree about being a Ganassi spy to answering the ‘compare IndyCar to NASCAR’ question with, “Come on brother, are you serious?!” It’s always a good time.

Plus, I’d be failing at life if I didn’t thank those of you who come out to the race on Sunday wearing your new Barracuda Racing Tweetup t-shirts to support our team. That’s really cool and if you don’t think we notice… think again. Let’s just say there’s a reason we use the #BestFansEVER hashtag this season. I’m also working on a cool new idea for the month of May and can’t wait to tell you about it. (I know, I know – teasing is mean. But put on your big-kid pants and be patient.)

And now, the part you’ve all been waiting for. (No, not the race recap, although you can find that HERE.) It’s time for… drumroll please… the sights of Long Beach. Presented without comment because there are just NO WORDS.

Finally, had to share what may be considered “the epitome” of the Long Beach race weekend (not-so-suitable for children, despite the pretty colors). You’re welcome…

The Hot Lap:
Miles traveled by Barracuda Racing crew: 4,176
Total laps completed (practice, quals, race): 86
Times we got Viso’d: 1
Bottles of booze consumed in the Cuda Lounge: 113
Team birthdays celebrated: 2
Prizes BHA has given away so far this season: 49
Tweetup tshirts given away so far this season: 294
Number of iPads stolen right out of a team member’s hands in Long Beach: 1
Percent of team members who can’t wait for May: 100
#TweetOfTheWeekend: From @CStins, after being announced as one of the Tbolt Prize pack winners: “Thanks! But can you send a boat to the paddock so I can get to my prize? #TGPLB”