Archive for January, 2020

The Silly Ritual of Being Very Superstitious

Posted in IndyCar on January 17, 2020 by Oilpressure

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In the interest of full-disclosure, this post is admittedly a “puff-piece”. What do you expect for mid-January? If you are looking for a hard-hitting IndyCar article, please check back next week. If you don’t mind the occasional puff-piece, feel free to continue reading.

My early morning local sports-talk radio station (104.5 – The Zone) had an interesting discussion this past week that reminded me of how I follow IndyCar races. With the Titans going to this weekend’s AFC Championship game in Kansas City, they asked callers to call in and tell their traditions and superstitions that they follow when either attending a Titans game or watching on television.

At first, I had to chuckle, because I do the same things that the first few callers said that they do for the Tennessee Vols and Titans games and IndyCar races.

Superstitions are an odd thing. They are a ridiculous ritual that normally rational people go through, thinking if they don’t continue a routine – something bad will happen.

For Christmas, Susan gave me a new Titans polo. It’s 100% cotton (of course), light blue and has a simple Titans logo on the chest. I wore it during the next game, which was the season finale at Houston. The Titans won and made it into the playoffs. Not messing with a good thing, I wore it again the next week when the Titans played at New England. When it produced the same result, I made sure it was in the wash before last week’s playoff game at Baltimore. You probably don’t have to wonder what I’ll be wearing on Sunday. You don’t mess with 3-0.

Of course, this was also combined with my game-day boxer-shorts underwear. Keep in mind these old boxers have been through a lot of losses, as well. But for the past seven or eight years, I’ve worn the same pair of boxers (washed, of course) for every Titans game that I watch on TV or see in person. I’ve already made the decision to retire them after this season. The elastic has seen better days and the fabric is looking a little worn. But if the Titans make it to the Super Bowl and win it, I might have to re-think that.

I also have a pair of boxers reserved for the Tennessee Vols. I last wore them for the Gator Bowl a couple of weeks ago. They, too, are slated for retirement before next season.

I hate to admit it, but my superstitions bleed over into the IndyCar season. It’s just not to the extreme of my football rituals…or is it?

If I’m at home watching a race, I will always put on an IndyCar-related polo and wear the same set of boxers. They have old antique cars all over them. I figured if they have cars, they would make a good set of race boxers. I only wear them sixteen times a year. But there are seventeen races in a season, you might notice. Yeah, I only wear them once on the double-header weekend at Belle Isle. I’m not going to wash them on Saturday night to wear them again on Sunday. That would be crazy (no comments, please).

If I’m at a race, I’m not too particular what I wear each day at the track. But I used to always wear a white Oilpressure polo on Race Day. That’s changed in recent years as I’ve added more colors to my Oilpressure collection, but mostly you’ll see me in a white polo on Sundays at the track.

The strange thing is, I’m not even sure why I wear “good-luck” boxers for a race. For a football game, there is only one winner and one loser. It’s all or nothing and it’s pretty clear who I’m pulling for. At a race, it’s different. I have those that I pull for and those that I’m not as crazy about, but I don’t really pull against anybody. Maybe I’m just hoping for a safe race and I think my wearing a certain set of boxers will somehow guarantee that.

Not only is this absurd, but I even have personal evidence to disprove my own superstition. It’s no secret that I have always been a big Tony Kanaan fan. Not only am I a fan, but I also correctly picked him to win the 2013 Indianapolis 500. I believe it’s the only time I’ve correctly picked the “500” winner. The problem was that in 2013, I forgot to pack the “lucky” Race Day boxers. That particular morning, I had to (gasp) wear ordinary everyday boxers, yet Kanaan won the race. Did that do anything to make me give up this silly ritual? No. I made sure I packed them and wore them in 2014.

But if you think I’m crazy, you should have heard some of the rituals, superstitions and traditions that some Titans fans go through. Many of them do what I do and wear superstitious articles of clothing, but many listeners took it to another level.

One guy said he never sits during a game, even while watching at home. One guy will start watching on his DVR about ten minutes delayed, but will follow the game on Twitter so that he knows what is about to happen ahead of time. Another said he will only drink a certain type of beer during a game. Maybe the worst was the listener who said he separates his m&m’s by color and puts them in separate bowls before the game and eats certain colors by quarters. Now that’s weird!

So am I the only strange person that insists on wearing certain items to watch a football game on television? What about for IndyCar viewing. Do any of you adhere to certain rituals or traditions just to watch an IndyCar race in the comfort of your home? Do you do anything special at the track? If so, let us know below. I’d like confirmation that I’m not the only nut-job out there.

Go Titans! #TitanUp

George Phillips

An Oversight That Needs Correcting

Posted in IndyCar on January 15, 2020 by Oilpressure

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On Monday, Robin Miller wrote a very interesting article on Racer.com about an oversight that I didn’t even know existed. He was speaking of the IMS Hall of Fame and how a select few have been consistently been omitted over the years. I recommend that you read his article, because he makes some very good points.

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A Random Stroke of Luck

Posted in IndyCar on January 13, 2020 by Oilpressure

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Before anything else, I must boast on the efforts of my Tennessee Titans. Last weekend, they did most of the free world a favor by ousting the defending champion New England Patriots in Foxborough. This past Saturday night, they went into Baltimore and dispatched the Ravens, who had the best record in the NFL at 14-2. Next week, the Titans play the Kansas City Chiefs on the road for the right to go to the Super Bowl. Based on the Chiefs comeback yesterday it’ll be a tall order to beat them, but to say things are giddy in Music City is an understatement. Sorry, but I had to get that off my chest before I switched into race-mode.

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The Penske Era Begins at IMS

Posted in IndyCar on January 10, 2020 by Oilpressure

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As of this past Monday, the sale of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, The NTT IndyCar Series and IMS Productions to Roger Penske is now complete. Two months have passed since the best kept secret in the history of motorsports was dropped on us, and I’m still having a tough time processing the potential implications of this transaction.

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A Request For an Update

Posted in IndyCar on January 8, 2020 by Oilpressure

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Longtime followers of this site will recall that I have always taken a special interest in the Jones & Maley Special, otherwise known as the car up on the roof. For years, I had heard Donald Davidson speak of the car that sat up on top of the Safety Auto Glass building, just east of downtown Indianapolis. When I heard him give an in-depth history of the car and how it got up there, I became fascinated with the story. In fact, I was so fascinated with the car – I named my yellow-lab puppy “Maley” when we got her in August of 2015.

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Try to Avoid This Slippery Slope

Posted in IndyCar on January 6, 2020 by Oilpressure

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I trust that everyone had a nice holiday season. I know I did. I ate a lot and got to see some friends and family. On the sports front, my Vols beat the Hoosiers (sorry IU fans) and my Titans squeaked into the NFL playoffs. Most Colts fans were happy that they beat the Patriots on Saturday night and sent Tom Brady packing – perhaps for good.

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