Firestone 600 becomes “Monsoon 600”, moved to August

June 14, 2016     By: Sandi Argo

The much awaited Indy car race at the Texas Motor Speedway this past weekend was postponed due to rather unexpected rains that settled in right over the track, and stayed. Weather predictions had been set at a 20% chance, at the most. That 20% lasted for several hours, often bringing monsoon type downpours and enough lightning to prompt the emergency response teams at TMS to usher race fans to safer areas, away from the metal stands. The rains didn’t dampen the spirits of those that waited patiently for the weather to clear, and as the early evening hours passed, the hopes were that the track would be able to be dried, with the use of the air dryers and a bit of elbow grease from crews. At around 6:30, the show was started with the demonstration of ultimate power from Robosaurus! According to the Robosaurus website (robosaurus.com) the Robosaurus is…

The 30-ton, fire-breathing, transforming T-Rex that eats cars and planes for an afternoon snack.

Robosaurus travels the country in the guise of a semi-truck, but when he gets ready for action, he transforms into a 40-foot tall metal dinosaur with power that dwarfs even his pre-historic ancestors.

When Robosaurus gets down to business, he faces his adversaries with 20-foot flames that shoot from his nose and a jaw that crushes with a staggering 28,000 pounds of pressure per square inch. This is truly a mechanical beast you want on your side.

After having waited for so long, the spectators were eager to see the metal monster rip cars in half (a couple of spectators were hoping to see the car of their least favorite driver in the clutches of the monster) and cheered as it demolished the cars like they were made of paper.

Parachute jumpers made spectacular landings onto the infield grass as the 1st Calvary Division Marching band, from Fort Hood proudly played the National Anthem. Once the pre race show was over the spectators again waited for the track to dry and the race to start. Drivers went back to their buses to wait as well. Once again though, mother nature had the last say. The rains settled in over the track and dashed the hopes of both racers and spectators alike. At around 11 p.m. the announcement was made to the media that the race would be postponed to Sunday.

Unfortunately, the storms returned for an encore on Sunday. With racers schedules leaving little room for error, and the weather being completely unpredictable, the race was called off after 71 laps had been completed. James Hinchcliffe was the leader of the race when it was stopped. According to the Texas Motor Speedway website,

When the Verizon IndyCar Series returns on Aug. 27, there will be a practice session and full-field autograph session prior to the race, which will start at 7 p.m. CDT. More details as the full day schedule, and other TMS activities, will be announced at a future date.
Fans already holding tickets will be able to use those for the race in August.
“We felt that was the best way to serve all the fans,” Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage said of the rescheduled date. “We maybe could have hung around and tried to get it dry tonight and run until halfway but that’s not right. We wanted to give the fans a race today.”
If fans, who had tickets, are unable to attend the race in August, their unused ticket may be exchanged for another race ticket of equal or lesser value within one calendar year (1 for 1 ticket exchanges only). The original ticket buyer may contact the TMS Fan Relations team at (817) 215-8500 to request replacement tickets and if the ticket holder is NOT the original ticket buyer, they need to return the physical ticket to the TMS Ticket Office in order to request an exchange. Any ticket may be upgraded for a future event by paying the difference in ticket price (based on availability). There will be no refunds on tickets given for rescheduled races. No credits will be issued for exchanges of lesser value and complimentary/zero dollar tickets may not be exchanged for a future date, but will be available for the rescheduled event.
In the meantime, race fans can get their “fix” each Friday (starting June 24th and each Friday in July) at the TMS Friday Night Drags. Jack County local, Tray McFarland will be racing the Black Widow C6 each Friday. For more information see the TMS website at texasmotorspeedway.com
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“Robosaurus” didn’t let the weather keep him from demolishing 2 cars for a cheering crowd!

Hélio Castroneves, a fan favorite, greets the crowd as he walks to the driver introductions.

Hélio Castroneves, a fan favorite, greets the crowd as he walks to the driver introductions.

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Members of the 1st Division Calvary Marching Band, from Ft Hood, played the National Anthem for rain washed crowds.

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