Sunday, April 21, 2013

Live from Trackside - Grand Prix of Long Beach

Sunday, April 21
5:15 p.m.
It was a little disappointing result but there were a lot of positives. The No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen team did a great job in pit lane. We ran up front. We had the speed and the pace to run consistently up front. We’re looking forward to taking what we learned this weekend to the Texas test and Brazil. We have a good pit lane position from qualifying for Brazil. From here, we’ll go back to qualifying consistently and staying up front.

8:00 a.m.
It's race day! It's a foggy morning here in Long Beach, but hopefully it will lift before morning warm-up at 9. Feeling good today... I think the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing team will be fast, and with starting in the top-10, we have a good opportunity to move up the field with a few strategic moves here and there.

Congrats to my Ganassi teammates Scott and Memo, and the No. 01 team on their GRAND-AM win at Road Atlanta yesterday! Well done.

Make sure you're following me on Twitter @racewithinsulin today for updates during the race from my Pit Lane Reporter (PLR). Tune in to the Grand Prix of Long Beach at 1 p.m. (PT) on NBCSN! Thanks for the support!

Saturday, April 20
5:30 p.m.
Phew, long day! The Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing crew worked super hard last night and I think it started to show this morning in practice. Thanks to them for all of their work, as always.

Overall, it was a pretty good day for the No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen car.  It was nice to bounce back today after shaking off some of yesterday’s difficulties. We had a couple of good sessions and finished in the top-10 both times. We have the car for it and it was good to show results. It was a really good way to pay the guys back after working late last night. It’s great to start ninth. We have a really consistent car and we'll be able to work our way up from there.

Pre-qualifying
After qualifying, I went over to the IndyCar Fan Village and met some fans at the Novo Nordisk FlexPen Tunnel. I even had a special visitor--my grandmother! Always nice to see family when I'm racing here in California.

Hanging with Grandee
I'm finishing up some engineering meetings, then headed to dinner with some family and friends. Be sure to tune in to the Grand Prix of Long Beach tomorrow at 1 p.m. Pacific on NBCSN!

9:00 a.m.
It's a beautiful morning here in Long Beach! I just had breakfast and walked over to the track. On the agenda today: morning practice and afternoon qualifying! We had some mechanical issues yesterday, but the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing team will be ready to go today.

Tune-in! You can find live timing and scoring for qualifying (2 p.m. PT) here, or you can watch on NBCSN at 3 p.m. PT.

If you're here at the track, be sure to come see me at the NovoLog FlexPen Tunnel (in the Lifestyle Expo) at 3:45 p.m.!

Friday, April 19
5:15 p.m.
Just finished up the autograph session here in the paddock. Long Beach always brings out a great crowd!

As far as practice this afternoon, it wasn’t an ideal start to the weekend. I think we have a pretty good car but we just have a couple mechanical things to look at. We have some things to change and try in the morning in set-up. We’ll be alright come tomorrow. We know what we need to fix.

For now, I'm spending some time at the transporter with the engineering team before dinner with some friends and family here in town.

Afternoon practice.

12:25 p.m.
Not a bad first practice session. We didn't spend a lot of time on track, so we're not yet ready to gauge our times or speeds with others. Looking forward to going back out at 2:30!

Via @CGRteams
10:00 a.m.
Good morning! I had a relaxing dinner last night and got some good sleep ahead of this race weekend. I just finished up a TV interview and a quick piece for INDYCAR 36. On track soon!

In case you missed it, check out this AP piece on my Dodgers experience earlier this week!

Thursday, April 18
1:30 p.m.
Just finished up with my live chat with the Long Beach Press Telegram. If you missed it, you can check out the full transcript here! My friend Charlie (who I met last year here at the race) even jumped on to ask a question! Hope to see you again soon, Charlie!

Live chatting with fans!
I'm headed over to get some lunch, then I'll be walking the track around 2. Taking it easy tonight and getting some rest before the on-track sessions start tomorrow. Looking forward to getting the No. 83 car on track here in Long Beach!

10 a.m.
It's not every day you get to realize one of your dreams. I was lucky enough to check one thing off of my bucket list in 2011... racing in the Indianapolis 500. Yesterday I had the opportunity to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Dodgers game, and I am still speechless. There are just no words to explain how cool that was for me. In case you didn't know, I'm a huge Dodgers fan (understatement, perhaps) so I was stoked not only to be there for batting practice but also be on the field and throw the first pitch. Thanks to everyone at Chip Ganassi Racing and the Dodgers for making it happen!

So cool!
With Matt Kemp before my big moment.
I'll talk more about that later, but now I'm focused on this weekend: the Grand Prix of Long Beach! I'm really looking forward to the race here in Long Beach. It's always one of my favorite stops of the season--both because of the on-track competitiveness and because it's a race close to home for me. The Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing team had a good weekend at Barber and we were fast at Long Beach last year. I think we know what we have to do to make a bit more progress with the No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen car so we're on the podium this time around.

I'm hanging out before jumping on a live chat at noon, with the Long Beach Press Telegram. Want to join me? Click here to learn more!

Here's a quick race weekend run-down (all times Pacific). Live timing and scoring for all on-track sessions available here. Make sure you're following @racewithinsulin on Twitter, too!

Friday, April 19:
  10:30-11:15 a.m. Practice
  2:30-3:15 p.m. Practice
  4-5 p.m. Autograph session (in the paddock)
Saturday, April 20:
  10:40-11:25 a.m. Practice
  2-3:10 p.m. Qualifying
  3:45 p.m. NovoLog FlexPen Tunnel appearance (in INDYCAR Fan Village at the Lifestyle Expo)
Sunday, April 21:
  9-9:30 a.m. Warm-up
  1 p.m. Grand Prix of Long Beach (live on NBC Sports Network)

2 comments :

  1. Good Luck Charlie! We are huge fans and will be following you all weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  2. solchooljian@roadrunner.comApril 22, 2013 at 11:10 PM

    Charlie,
    Laura and I have known for a long time that you are a champion and your explanation of the disappointing result at Long Beach showed that you have the strength and resolve that a champion has to keep striving. And that showed when you retook 5th place after the first track collision, you did not give up, and in fact, drove even harder.

    ReplyDelete