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May
31

Scattered Showers & Storms Monday

Posted By · May 31, 2010 at 5:27 am

Highs today will reach the low to mid 80s with spotty morning storms becoming more numerous for the afternoon and evening.  We have warm moist air moving into the state from the south, and a cold front moving in from the west that will spark storms.  Severe weather is not expected, but some storms will contain strong wind, heavy rain and small hail.

Overnight, showers and storms come to an end as temps drop to the mid 60s.

Tuesday, the air won’t feel as sticky, but the warmth stays in the forecast as highs hit the mid 80s.

Wednesday, more showers and storms are possible late in the day, continuing through Thursday with highs in the mid 80s.

We finally cool down to the mid 70s Friday, more more showers and storms enter the forecast Saturday.

Indianapolis Five Day Weather Forecast

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May
30

Let’s go racing…no, wait

Posted By · May 30, 2010 at 1:26 pm

After a fantastic-as-usual opening ceremony (national anthem audio issues notwithstanding), engines roared and the field took off.

Then stopped.

For the second year in a row, we had a crash before the honorary starter could shake hands, put the flag away and find some shade. Davey Hamilton spun and found the wall inside turn 2. So Jack Nicholson dropped the green again and we’re back at it.

It took a moment to get my bearings, as the ABC broadcast appears to be about a half lap behind the race outside my window here in the media center. As cars whizzed down the front stretch, they were approaching turn 3. Explains how I could watch the caution flag come out for the Hamilton crash.

Now, it’s Bruno Junqueira’s turn, also in Turn2. The speed demon of the second day of qualifying (and the sexy darkhorse pick because of that) is also out of the race. What a couple of years it’s been for Bruno at Indy.

So we’re down to 31 cars before my seat gets warm. I really hope this isn’t a trend, for the sake of the race.

—————

We’re through Lap 20 (though the average speed of the race is under 140 MPH, if that tells you about how many of those were actually under green) and lookie here… Tony Kanaan, who qualified with about 45 minutes left in Bump Day, then moved back to 33rd when he switched cars, is up to 16th. Now THAT would be a story.

————-

First pit stops hit around Lap 37. All the leaders, then just about everyone else pitted, then the course went yellow. Scary moment in the pits for Will Power as he took off with the fuel hose still attached.

Dario leads Graham Rahal, Power, Danica Patrick and Alex Lloyd under yellow at Lap 41, though I believe at least Rahal and Patrick still have to pit. (I was right. Danica pits and drops to 20th, Rahal only falls to sixth and Power had to come back into the pits and falls to eighth.)

———

Back to green. Lap 51 now and it’s an interesting mix in the top half of the pylon. Dario and Helio are still 1-2, but Rafa Matos is in third, with solid, no-frills, as expected Ed Carpenter and Townsend Bell are fifth and seventh, respectively.

Go back a bit and Tony Kanaan is still climbing and now has help. He’s 12th, immediately behind teammates Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti, with another teammate John Andretti two spots behind. A good spot to be for Andretti Autosport to make some ground.

Will Power made a third trip through the pits moments ago and has fallen to 25th from his front row starting position and Bertrand Baguette and Hideki Mutoh have also lost several laps with issues.

Jinx! John Andretti is black flagged for a block of Dan Wheldon on the front stretch. He’ll drop to 25th, just ahead of Vitor Meira and Sebastian Saavedra.

———

Lap 69, chaos in the pits! Rafa Matos lost a left rear tire (the only one he has, in fact) and turned it into the pit wall. Everyone appears to be okay and Matos is back out on track. Scott Dixon braked hard to avoid Matos and appeared to kill the engine. He got pushed back to his pit box, re-fired and got back out, but not after a huge drop in position.

More significantly for Tony Kanaan fans, could this incident have shown Lady Luck is getting ready to reward TK for his patience? Matos (and his tire) were headed across pit row toward Kanaan’s car, but made hard left turns and the No. 11 car got through free and easy and into fourth place. Any other time in the last four years, I’m betting that tire gets TK. Is karma being funny for the funny Brazilian?

Back green on Lap 72.

Back to yellow on Lap 73.

Rafael Matos hit Turn 1 hard and backwards. Out of the car and appears to be walking fine.

———–

Vitor Meira became the latest crash victim around Lap 105, getting high in Turn 2 and smacking the wall. A sad end for Vitor, but remarkable that he was back in the field this year. An excellent recovery for Meira after crashing hard in last year’s 500.

Tomas Scheckter took over the lead during the caution, having pitted right before Meira’s crash, but Franchitti took it back on the first lap back green. Tony Kanaan has climbed to second.

———

More pit stops coing. Wilson, Scheckter and Kanaan are among the first in, out with no apparent issues. Marco Andretti takes over second behind Franchitti for the time being.

——

Team Penske had a horrible stretch around the Lap 146 mark. Starting with Helio Castroneves stalling his car in the pits, en route to a 20+ second stop, followed by a 13 or so second stop by Will Power, then topped off by Ryan Briscoe crashing hard and sliding down the front stretch.

Dario Franchitti has resumed the race lead, followed by Andretti Autosport teammates Marco Andretti and Tony Kanaan. Tomas Scheckter and Townsend Bell round out the top 5 at Lap 152.

——-

Rookie Sebastian Saavedra crashed on Lap 162. Saavedra, who also ran the Indy Lights Freedom 100 on Friday, made the field while waiting for an MRI at Methodist Hospital last Sunday following a practice crash on Bump Day. He got in when Jay Howard and Paul Tracy discarded their times in an effort to qualify faster, but failed.

Mike Conway, Justin Wilson, Castroneves and Graham Rahal chose not to pit during the caution period and have taken over the top 4 spots.

One by one, those four peeled off for fuel, leaving Franchitti back in the lead, ahead of Kanaan and Wheldon, when Kanaan needed to pit, a spectacular final lap crash by Conway allowed Franchitti to cruise to victory.

Conway touched wheels with Ryan Hunter-Reay coming out of Turn 4, sending his No. 24 car flipping in the air and into the catch fence on the outside of the track. Hunter-Reay also hit the wall in the incident and finished 18th.

Franchitti became the 17th driver in Indy 500 history to win multiple races.

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May
30

Past Indy 500 Weather Conditions

Posted By · May 30, 2010 at 7:54 am

Today we’ll hit the upper 80s with a 30% chance of scattered t-storms.

This is one if not the most important forecast of the year!  Here’s what’s happened in the past.

The following is provided by the Indianapolis National Weather Service. 

                     Indianapolis 500

  Max Temp    Min Temp    Avg Daily Temp  Precipitation   Wind Speed 
   Warmest     Warmest       Warmest         Wettest        Highest    
———————————————————————————-
  1937  92    1929  73     1937  82.0      2004   3.80    1995  18.0    
  1953  91    1937  72     1929  81.0      1981   1.55    1956  16.3    
  1919  91    1919  71     1919  81.0      1996   1.08    1997  15.5    
  1978  90    1941  69     2006  78.5      1926   0.63    1955  14.3    
  1977  90    2006  68     1978  77.5      1976   0.56    1983  12.8    
  2006  89    1991  68     1977  77.5      1997   0.53    2004  12.5    
  1929  89    1970  68     1941  77.5      1957   0.49    1992  12.0    
  1934  88    1921  68     1921  77.5      2007   0.42    1991  12.0    
  1988  87    1982  67     1953  77.0      1950   0.34    2000  11.7    
  1972  87    1962  66     1913  76.5      1979   0.28    1984  11.6    
  1921  87    1956  66     1956  75.5      1960   0.26    1985  11.4    
  1913  87    1926  66     1972  75.0      1975   0.25    2001  11.2    
  1941  86    1914  66     1934  75.0      1931   0.25    1993  11.0    
  1995  85    1913  66     1914  75.0      1956   0.24    1970  10.9    
  1985  85    1978  65     1982  74.0      1962   0.17    1953  10.9    
  1980  85    1977  65     1975  74.0      1973   0.16    1981  10.8    
  1975  85    1959  65     1995  73.5      1995   0.15    1975  10.8    
  1956  85    1981  64     1999  73.0      1928   0.15    1998  10.5    
  1939  85    2007  63     1986  73.0      1940   0.14    1967  10.5    
  1999  84    2004  63     1962  73.0      1993   0.12    1962  10.5    

   Coldest     Coldest       Coldest         Driest                    
———————————————————————————-
  1992  58    1947  37     1947  50.0     Zero on many                  
  1997  60    1966  40     1924  52.5     occasions                     
  1930  62    1924  40     1992  53.0                                   
  1947  63    1961  42     1930  53.5                                   
  2003  65    1971  43     1966  54.0                                   
  1924  65    1989  45     1997  55.0                                   
  2001  66    1930  45     1955  56.0                                   
  1996  66    2002  46     2001  56.5                                   
  1973  66    1955  46     1961  57.0                                   
  1955  66    1936  46     1971  57.5                                   
  1968  67    2005  47     1964  57.5                                   
  2000  68    2001  47     1936  57.5                                   
  1984  68    1964  47     2003  58.0                                   
  1966  68    1952  47     1989  58.0                                   
  1964  68    1992  48     1973  58.0                                   
  1940  68    1974  49     1912  59.5                                   
  1915  68    1965  49     1968  60.0                                   
  1912  68    1949  49     1965  60.0                                   
  1936  69    1997  50     1940  60.0                                   
  1967  70    1973  50     1984  60.5                                   
———————————————————————————-

  1911-2009   1911-2009    1911-2009       1911-2009      1949-2009
  AVERAGE     AVERAGE      AVERAGE         AVERAGE        AVERAGE
   MAX         MIN          TEMP           PRECIP         WINDS
   77          56.5         66.8            0.15 IN      South  8.9 MPH

                           Updated – August 25, 2009

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May
30

Race Day Forecast & Work Week Preview

Posted By · May 30, 2010 at 4:49 am

Get ready for a hot and humid day at the track!

Highs today will reach the upper 80s with a 30% chance of pop up showers or storms.  Severe storms are not expected.  A pop up can happen any time this afternoon because we have moisture being pumped in from the south.  We’ll just have to wait and see where convection develops.

Monday, a cold front moves through the state triggering a 60% chance for shower and thunderstorms.  Highs for Memorial Day will reach the low 80s.

We dry out Tuesday, with highs in the low 80s, before another storm system eyes Central Indiana late Wednesday and Thursday.  We’ll tap into an unsettled pattern with a chance of showers and t-storms through the weekend.

Indianapolis Five Day Weather Forecast

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May
29

Holiday Weekend Forecast

Posted By · May 29, 2010 at 6:38 am

Highs today will reach the mid to upper 80s with mostly sunny skies.  There’s a 20% chance of an isolated shower in extreme south central Indiana.

Overnight, skies clear and lows drop to the mid 60s.

Race day looks warm and muggy.  Highs will reach the upper 80s.  There’s 30% chance of an isolated shower.  We’ll keep a close eye on the radar.  Remember, you can get the latest weather information from 6am-noon on WTHR’s live coverage of Indy 500 morning.

Monday more showers and storms are likely with highs in the low 80s.

Tuesday and Wednesday we dry out with sunshine and highs in the low 80s.

Thursday another round of showers and storms comes our way.

Indianapolis Five Day Weather Forecast

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May
28

It’s not my fault and other Carb Day thoughts

Posted By · May 28, 2010 at 11:27 am

After an overcast opening week at the Speedway, the weather was good for qualifying and now is downright beautiful for race weekend. The IZOD IndyCar series has a good vibe going, and the drama and excitement of the new qualifying format has given May an energy boost heading into the 94th running of the Indianapolis 500.

“It’s not my fault,” is the line of the month, uttered by a frustrated, slightly shaken Danica Patrick after the worst qualifying effort of her Indy career. She was right, but totally wrong to say it. When you play for a team, and you’re the quarterback, you simply can’t go public with the pointing finger. It makes you look bad. And Danica looked bad, and got booed. She knows it, and has somewhat apologized.

Anyone besides Helio Castroneves winning the race will be a mild upset. Anyone besides a Penske or Ganassi winning the race will be a major upset. I picked Scott Dixon at the start of the event. I’ll stick with him.

History will be made with 4 women in the race. It could have been 5. But the question of whether Milka Duno belongs on the track answered itself. She was too slow. I’ll take Simona De Silvestro to finish highest among the women and win rookie of the year honors as well.

The new qualifying format is a hit. The only change I would make is at the start of the Fast 9 Shootout, the cars should qualify in inverted order the first time through. Whoever runs the fast time in the first session goes last at 4:30 pm.

As for bump day, I hope teams learned this lesson: never voluntarily take yourself out of the Indy 500. Make someone bump you out. Paul Tracy and Jay Howard will be watching the Indy 500, even though both of their cars qualified quicker than bubble boy Sebastien Saavedra. Mario Romancini also withdrew and wound up requalifying as the fastest rookie. But Romancini could have waited to be bumped and then run a faster speed.

-Rich Nye, sports reporter

rnye@wthr.com

TheSportsGuy13 on Twitter

Categories : 13 Sports Blog
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May
28

Friday Forecast & Weekend Preview

Posted By · May 28, 2010 at 6:58 am

Highs today will reach the low 80s with mostly sunny skies.  There’s a chance for an isolated thunderstorm this afternoon.  Most spots will stay dry as less humid air takes over.

Saturday, a spectacular day is in store.  Highs in the mid 80s with mostly sunny skies.

Sunday, highs look to hit the mid to upper 80s with a 50% chance of afternoon thunderstorms.  At this time the activity looks to be scattered and mainly south, but we’ll keep an eye on your race day forecast.

Expect a daily chance of rain early next week as temps cool off to the low 80s and later the upper 70s.

Indianapolis Five Day Weather Forecast

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May
27

2010 Atlantic Hurricane Outlook

Posted By · May 27, 2010 at 2:43 pm

The following is an article that was released by NOAA.  The original can be found here.

An “active to extremely active” hurricane season is expected for the Atlantic Basin this year according to the seasonal outlook  issued today by NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center – a division of the National Weather Service.  As with every hurricane season, this outlook underscores the importance of having a hurricane preparedness plan in place.

Across the entire Atlantic Basin for the six-month season, which begins June 1, NOAA is projecting a 70 percent probability of the following ranges:

  • 14 to 23 Named Storms (top winds of 39 mph or higher), including:
  • 8 to 14 Hurricanes (top winds of 74 mph or higher), of which:
  • 3 to 7 could be Major Hurricanes (Category 3, 4 or 5; winds of at least 111 mph)

“If this outlook holds true, this season could be one of the more active on record,” said Jane Lubchenco, Ph.D., under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and NOAA administrator. “The greater likelihood of storms brings an increased risk of a landfall. In short, we urge everyone to be prepared.”

The outlook ranges exceed the seasonal average of 11 named storms, six hurricanes and two major hurricanes. Expected factors supporting this outlook are:

  • Upper atmospheric winds conducive for storms. Wind shear, which can tear apart storms, will be weaker since El Niño in the eastern Pacific has dissipated. Strong wind shear helped suppress storm development during the 2009 hurricane season.
  • Warm Atlantic Ocean water. Sea surface temperatures are expected to remain above average where storms often develop and move across the Atlantic. Record warm temperatures – up to four degrees Fahrenheit above average – are now present in this region.
  • High activity era continues. Since 1995, the tropical multi-decadal signal has brought favorable ocean and atmospheric conditions in sync, leading to more active hurricane seasons. Eight of the last 15 seasons rank in the top ten for the most named storms with 2005 in first place with 28 named storms.

“The main uncertainty in this outlook is how much above normal the season will be. Whether or not we approach the high end of the predicted ranges depends partly on whether or not La Niña develops this summer,” said Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster at NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center. “At present we are in a neutral state, but conditions are becoming increasingly favorable for La Niña to develop.”

“FEMA is working across the administration and with our state and local partners to ensure we’re prepared for hurricane season,” said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate.  “But we can only be as prepared as the public, so it’s important that families and businesses in coastal communities take steps now to be ready. These include developing a communications plan, putting together a kit, and staying informed of the latest forecasts and local emergency plans. You can’t control when a hurricane or other emergency may happen, but you can make sure you’re ready.”

NOAA scientists will continue to monitor evolving conditions in the tropics and will issue an updated hurricane outlook in early August, just prior to what is historically the peak period for hurricane activity.

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