I have not written about Indy Car Racing in quite awhile There are many things to discuss, but what I would like to discuss today, is how some of todays better drivers measure up to the greats of the Open Wheel Series. This came about about because of some research I had done recently about Helio Castroneves, one of my favorite drivers is the current series. I am not going to say who is a ‘Complete’ driver. There are less and less of those besides Tony Stewart these days. This chart and topic is strictly the IRL and its other names through the years.

Helio has 21 wins, including 3 Indy 500’s but no Championships

Rick Mears has 29 wins, 4 Indy 500’s and 3 Championships

Bobby Unser 35 wins, 3 Indy 500’s and 2 Championships

Al Unser Sr. 39 wins, 4 Indy 5’s and 3 Championships

Ton Sneva 13 wins, 1 Indy 500 and 2 Championships

Mario Andretti 52 wins, 1 Indy 500 4 Championships

Michael Andretti 42 wins, 0 Indy 500’s , 1 Championship

Al Unser Jr. 34 wins, 2 Indy 500’s and 2 Championship

A. J. Foyt 67 wins, 4 Indy 500’s and 7 Championships

Johnny Rutherford 27 wins, 3 Indy 500’s , 1 Championship

Now this is not meant to be a Helio, Dario or Dixon is not worth a shit. They are great drivers, but I would and could make the argument that the series is watered down and has been since the split. Now that they are merged we are in some of the countries toughest economic times, so it is harder to get sponsors, and teams in to the sport. Nascar has taken over as the premier racing in America and that has not helped. But the series is not the series of the early 90’s or 80’s. I mean lets be honest, Do you take Dario or Foyt? Do you take Mario or Scott Dixon? Do you take Kannan or Michael Andretti? Do you take Rick Mears or Will Power? Do you take Big Al or Marco Andretti? Do you take Little Al or Ryan Hunter-Reay ? Let’s be honest, we know how I feel about Foyt, Mario, and Mears. Mario was my 3rd favorite in the 80’s of those three. We know how I feel about Big Al, and truth be known, had I had more access to the racing in the 80’s and not been running around being a kid, I would have a even greater appreciation of Micahael Andretti and Little Al. I try to read everything I can on Little Al, and love the hell out of watching him on youtube. I could easily make the argument that Little Al is better than everyone running today, and yet, Michael Andretti had more career wins, and every other big name I have mentioned was very compareable or better than Little Al. What does that say about the pre 1995 Depth? It tells you in the old days that it was a lot harder to win, the drivers were better and there was a lot more skill involved. It’s tough to compare era’s but the reality is a sport I love is watered down and todays racers can not compare to yesteryear.

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