Under bright blue skies…

We’re three hours away from some racing under sunny skies at Indianapolis Motor Speedway!

We’re live at IMS for the 16th Allstate 400 at the Brickyard! The weather is perfect and getting warmer.

While the race starts at 2 p.m. (2:23 if you’re setting your watch by it), my day started with an alarm at 5 a.m. and a trip to the track shortly after 7. If there was any question whether getting to IMS seven hours early was a wide decision, it was quickly wiped away. There is so much going on behind the scenes, I can’t believe we’re already pushing lunchtime. And, as I learned at the 500 in May, once lunch hits, the pomp and circumstance flies through right afterwards.

Already, I’ve done a near-complete turn around in my thoughts of the behind-the-scenes scene. Racing teams at the 500 were (mostly) open and friendly and welcoming guests. The NASCAR teams around the garage seemed to be all-business. Can’t say that I blame them, they’re working, but it was just different. But after I realized there was a show behind the show around the team haulers, things changed. Drivers and crew and PR folks were just hanging out, chatting with media and fans and it was a lot more like the scene I remembered from my first trip “behind the fence” at IMS.

Be sure to check out my ongoing Twitter feed and select photos I’ve been uploading from the pre-race fun!

Race Day Forecast

Today’s Allstate 400 looks to be shaping up nicely!

Highs today will reach the low 80s with clouds increasing throughout the day.  There’s a slight chance for a pop up shower or thunderstorm, but it looks like dry conditions will be found at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The chance for a stray storm sticks around tonight, as lows drop to the low to mid 60s.

Monday, bring on the sunshine!  Highs are expected to hit the mid 80s.  If you’ve been missing the summer heat, here it is for you!

Starting Tuesday we’ll have nearly a daily chance for rain through Friday.  It looks like the best chance for storms will be Wednesday.

Have fun at the track, and don’t forget the sunscreen!

Let’s go racing! (Take 2)

Two months after my first effort, the WTHR web staff takes aim at liveblogging history again at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Okay, race fans, let’s do this again!

I must have done something right at the Indianapolis 500, because the powers that be at the station are sending me in for more at tomorrow’s Brickya Allstate 400 at the Brickyard. If you can’t make the race, feel free to lean on me for wandering photos from the pit and garage areas, then providing the best liveblogging and Twittering available from the second floor media room.

As for the race, I really wish I would have dropped a prediction when it came to me, because now going with Mark Martin seems awfully front-runnerish. But it would be cool to see a first-time winner take the race tomorrow. With many drivers calling it “the 2nd biggest race on the schedule”, it definitely means a lot for them to do well and win at Indy. While it’s no doubt some of the favorites would make a good story – Jeff Gordon becoming the first 5-time winner at IMS or Tony Stewart and Jimmie Johnson joining the elite group of 3-time winners – I’d like to see someone come from out of the blue.

That’s why, if I have to play impartial favorites tomorrow, I’d love to see a former 500 winner – Juan Pablo Montoya or Sam Hornish, Jr. – kiss the bricks tomorrow evening, adding another unique footnote in the history of the Brickyard. Taking it a step further, what if Hornish cuts inside of oh, say, John Andretti, coming off the fourth turn to take the win? Would that be too much?

Probably.

Wild dreaming aside, I’ll stick with my Martin pick, with the “multiples” – Gordon, Stewart and Johnson – boxed in my trifecta.

I don’t follow NASCAR nearly as much as I do IRL, but I can’t wait to get out to the track! I hope you’ll join me.

Severe Storm Threat Dimishes

The chance for severe storms is diminishing across Central Indiana.

After a rainy morning, the sun is starting to come out in Central Indiana.  A few spotty showers are possible, but for the most part I think we’ll remain dry.  The Storm Prediction Center has taken Central Indiana out of a risk area for severe weather.  Click here to see the latest Saturday Outlook

Qualifications at the Track

A lot of pressure is on the forecast this weekend!

Today highs are expected to reach the mid 80s with a mix of clouds and sun, and we’ll see scattered thunderstorms too.  A complete washout is not expected, but be prepared for rain as you head out.  A cold front will push through the state triggering the scattered storms this afternoon.  Some could be strong to severe.  A slight risk  for severe weather has been issued.  We’ll mainly be watching for damaging winds and large hail.

Tonight, any lingering showers or storms will come to an end, and skies will be partly cloudy.

Sunday, expect a mix of sun and clouds with highs nearing 80 degrees.  There’s a slight chance for a spotty shower or storm.

Turning Up the Heat

It’s finally going to feel like July today!

Warmer temperatures and humidity are returning to Central Indiana.  Highs today will reach the low to mid 80s with partly cloudy skies.  There’s a slight chance for an isolated shower or t-storm late this afternoon, but for the most part dry conditions look to stick with us.

We’re watching a developing storm system for tomorrow.  Highs will reach the mid 80s with scattered storms as a cold front comes through the state.  Some storms could be strong to severe with heavy rain, strong winds, and large hail.

Sunday, still looks like a slight chance of showers with temps in the low 80s.