Archive for May, 2011|Monthly archive page

The Hurricane Season for 2011 Has Begun

Radar Loop of Tropical Storm Fay's Florida Visit - YOU MUST CLICK ON TO ACTIVATE.

By the time you read this, May of 2011 will have ended and the Northern Hemisphere Atlantic, Caribbean, and Gulf of Mexico hurricane season will have begun.  The following link will take you to a summary of the NOAA outlook for this season:

http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2011/20110519_atlantichurricaneoutlook.html

Please be prepared if you live in hurricane territory.

The loop above illustrates nicely that a tropical system does not have to be a hurricane in order to cause significant problems including fatalities.  TO ACTIVATE YOU MUST LEFT CLICK ON THE IMAGE.  Here is what Wikipedia has to say about the 2008 storm:  Tropical Storm Fay was a tropical storm and the sixth named storm of the 2008 Atlantic hurricane season. Fay formed from a vigorous tropical wave on August 15 over the Dominican Republic. It passed over the island of Hispaniola, into the Gulf of Gonâve, across the island of Cuba, and made landfall on the Florida Keys late in the afternoon of August 18 before veering into the Gulf of Mexico. It again made landfall near Naples, Florida, in the early hours of August 19 and progressed northeast through the Florida peninsula, emerging into the Atlantic Ocean near Melbourne on August 20. Extensive flooding took place in parts of Florida as a result of its slow movement. On August 21, it made landfall again near New Smyrna Beach, Florida, moving due west across the Panhandle, crossing Gainesville and Panama City, Florida. As it zigzagged from water to land, it became the first storm in recorded history to make landfall in Florida four times.   Thirty-six deaths were blamed on Fay.  The storm also resulted in one of the most prolific tropical cyclone related tornado outbreaks on record. A total of 81 tornadoes touched down across five states, three of which were rated as EF2. Damage from Fay was heavy, estimated at $560 million.

Here is a link to Wikipedia’s coverage of that storm:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tropical_Storm_Fay_%282008%29

Here is a link to my list of 23 Misconceptions About Hurricanes:

http://ztechzone.net/learningzone/science/science55/hurricanes.html

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INDIANAPOLIS 500 MILE RACE WILL HAVE FOUR LADY PARTICIPANTS!

The 2011 Indianapolis 500 Mile Race coming soon should be very exciting for those who would like to see a lady cross the finish line first.  The race, which will be televised live on ABC this coming Sunday, May 29, will have four ladies driving.  The average qualifying speeds for the four (based upon their four-lap averages over a total of 10 miles) was 224,267.  By contrast the pole winner, Alex Tagliani, qualified at 227.472.  However, if you were to average his speed with those of the other 29 male drivers, the numbers would be measurably closer.

This is really not a serious gender competition for me but I freely admit that I would be delighted to see the ladies do well and a win would be fantastic.  Perhaps my being the father of 3 “girls” and just one “boy” is a factor here.  Ladies I’ve known, particularly my mother and my mother-in-law, have caused me to have a great respect for their gender and the obstacles they’ve faced through history.   The bottom-line hope is that it’s a clean race and that no one gets hurt.  This kind of racing is truly a team sport and strategy can also make a world of difference.  I believe that luck is a key factor also.   Of the ladies, Pippa Mann is my favorite even though this will be her first race in an IndyCar.  If she can stay out of trouble early in the helter-skelter of the start and first 20 laps or so – I think she has a chance to do well.  She has never done a pit stop in a race before so this could be a factor also.  My emotional favorites among the men are number 43, John Andretti (a real gentleman), number 23, Paul Tracy (temperamental, unyielding), and number 67, Ed Carpenter (Sarah Fisher’s driver).

ABC broadcasting begins at 11 am.  The driver introduction is scheduled to occur at 11:30 and I expect the checkered flag to drop at noon – weather permitting.

Here are the ladies – a left click on the image should enlarge it for you:

The Ladies of the 2011 Indy-500

Pippa Mann – Indy Car Driver

Pippa Mann

If you know a little about my racing interests you might be aware of my long-time desire to see a lady win the Indy-500 Race. I’ve hoped for that since Janet Guthrie first drove in an Indy-500 in 1977.

There are 33 spots available for the 100th anniversary Indianapolis 500 race. Four of the 41 entrants are female. If you’ve been considering the remote possibility of a 5th in racing team owner, Sara Fisher, you can erase that one from your mind instantly since she is now about halfway though her much desired pregnancy.  Ed Carpenter will be driving Sara’s team car number 67.  The identity of her driver for car 57 has yet to be announced.  Here’s a link to her March 31 announcement about her pregnancy: http://www.sarahfisherracing.com/sarahsblogs.php

The four female entries are:

Pippa Mann – car 36

Danica Patrick – car 7

Simona De Silvestro – car 78

Ana Beatriz – car 24

Yesterday (May 12, 2011) my favorite, Pippa Mann, completed the Rookie Orientation Program at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

She ran consistent laps at each of the required four speed phases:

5 laps at 200-205 mph

10 laps at 205-210

10 laps at 210-215

10 laps at 215 or more.

Her fastest average speed was 219.116 mph.

Eric Bachelart, the Conquest Team owner was elated. “Pippa has done a sensational job today. It only took her 35 laps to go through the four phases of the program and I have to say this has been the smoothest rookie test we have ever done. She is ready, she gave us good feedback, and we can’t wait to get back on the track on Saturday for the opening of the practice week.”

Afterwards Mann said: “ . . . . things went so well today that we went through all four phases on just two sets of tires. I actually found the balance of the car fairly similar to the Indy Lights car, so the past two years have been great training.” She continued by expressing how happy she was with the results and expressed her gratitude over how hard the team worked to create such a successful outcome.

Tomorrow (Saturday, May 14) weather permitting, she will return to the Speedway for this year’s first Indianapolis 500 practice session.

There is now an official website for Pippa. Here is a link:

http://www.pippamann.com/default.aspx

And – here is a nice recent interview with Pippa where she talks about, among other things, the transition from Indy Lights to the Big Cars:

http://www.pippamann.com/MediaShow.aspx?ArticleID=308