The Oldest Rookies

Sometimes it’s hard to be a racer and a racing fan. Weekends from spring to autumn are spent at the track, practicing, qualifying, racing, and practicing some more. This past weekend was supposed to be Race 1 of the 2021 TRAK season for Daniel Demaras, but provincial restrictions have delayed the season.

As consolation, both the Formula 1 race at Imola and the IndyCar race at Barber Motorsports Park were broadcast this weekend. No kart racing meant the rare opportunity to watch races live, rather than on the PVR on Sunday night.

The most interesting part of the open-wheel series was IndyCar’s ‘rookie class’ of 2021. Usually this would be teenage graduates of the Road To Indy feeder series. This year it is:

  • 27-year-old Scott McLaughlin, 3-Time Champion in V8 Supercars
  • 35-year-old Romain Grosjean, Formula 1 pilot with 179 races and 10 podiums
  • 45-year-old Jimmie Johnson, 7-Time NASCAR Champion

The race winner was IndyCar sophomore Alex Palou, the 24-year-old teammate of Jimmie Johnson at Chip Ganassi Racing. After the even, Johnson commented on his young teammate:

“I’m just happy for Alex. To be that young and have all that talent, and for the opportunity I’ve been given with Chip Ganassi Racing. I like that kid a lot, even though he reminded me I was older than his father.”

Jimmie Johnson, 45-year-old IndyCar rookie

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