Typically when you watch a major league baseball game or an NFL football game you have a pretty good idea who stands a good chance to come out on top. The same can be said when you are watching The Olympics and it’s also understandable for world class racing as well wether it’s NASCAR, 24 Hours of Le Mans or the WRC. Like the old saying says, “The cream will rise to the top.”
But this years La Carrera Panamericana has proven to be anything except a typical year. Over 120 cars stared out and by day 2 less than 75 cars crossed the finish arch. From there things got worse. Most (not all) of the teams who where expected to finish high in the daily standings have not. Some of the best prepared and well equipped cars have suffered blown engines, transmissions or crashed into the side of mountains. There attrition rate has been high not to mention expensive. Several of the top class cars with first cabin Winston Cup engines blew in the first two days. Some very beautiful vintage cars have body’s that look like they now belong in wrecking yards. One of the cars was a high end Maserati that spun and was collected by a mountain.
Sadly teams were not allowed to race at the famous Mexico City Autodromo Hnos Rodriguez which was supposed to be the opener for Sunday’s Nascar race because it was raining so bad the whole night before. The damp weather has caused numerous electrical problems that teams were not prepared for and many have broken down during race and transit stages. On the flip side of that coin is the fact that a Volvo has slipped into second overall running against cars that can easily do over 200mph!
At this stage of the long grueling race teams are tired, frustrated, cold and many of them feel as if they have beat up and left for dead. Many team and crew members are feeling sick after being exposed to so much bad weather in Mexico City complete with lots of acid rain.
The good news…. There is no good news. This morning teams left Quertaro and will end up later today on the very narrow, twisty roads in the mountains near San Luis Potosi and last report was they are soaking wet with the possibility of rain.