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Ernie Francis Jr - Indy Lights Test

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  • Ernie Francis Jr - Indy Lights Test

    This is super exciting! And I hope this turns into a ride for 2022. Fell in love with this kid the last couple of years, and would love to see him in Indycar at some point. Hope the test goes well young man.

    https://racer.com/2021/10/12/francis...-griffis-test/


    The sad news in the article though mentions that Myles Rowe and the USF 2000 team will not continue as they look to focus on a car for Indy Lights. That's a bummer.
    RHR: "I'm a proud American boy right now!" -2014 Indy 500 Victory Lane

  • #2
    Fantastic! He has shown well in FR Americas so I have every confidence he will impress in this test. I hope this is the first step in a journey to Indycar

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    • #3
      Go Ernie!
      BAN SHREDDED CHEESE! MAKE AMERICA GRATE AGAIN!

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      • #4
        He was impressive in SRX
        "Paff has been closer to the mark than anyone will give him credit for."

        Richard Kimble 11/18/2010

        "Paff is far more right than any of you will EVER give him credit for.

        As non politically correct and un IndyCar friendly as it is, it's the truth. "

        SeeuInMay 12/29/2010

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        • #5
          The fact that Francis won three races this year and is third in points in FR Americas (two of them at VIR, which is an incredibly difficult track) shows well with his talent - in open wheel, which he had never driven until this year. This is behind Joshua Car, who has run several seasons in these cars, and Kyffin Simpson, who also runs Indy Pro 2000. Given the proper support he can do this in the similarly powered Indy Lights cars.

          I hope Myles Rowe also lands on his feet or that Penske continues to support him - there's potential there, with a four year break from driving and a completely new team it was always going to be hard for him to get acclimated. RP is loyal to people, so I have no reason to think that support won't continue, he needs to pair up with a DEForce or a more established team. His win in wet conditions was truly impressive this year as well.
          "Lyrically, I'm Mario Andretti on the mo-mo" - A Tribe Called Quest

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          • #6
            What I like about Ernie is that he seems willing to learn and doesn't think he's bigger then anyone else. He's doing well in FR Americas but jumping into a Lights car might catch him off guard since it basically does have twice the horsepower even though the Lights car does weigh a few hundred pounds more. I wouldn't be surprised with the proper support if he was earning poles and maybe win a race or two at the end of his first Indy Lights season.
            "The only good horsepower is usable horsepower.."

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            • #7
              Myles Rowe was really handled poorly. A driver with that much inactivity and a brand new team always should've been looked at as a multi-year process. I get that Francis is the better prospect and throwing their weight behind him, but if you're only going to put half the effort needed into developing a driver like Rowe and then toss him out, what was the point of starting with him in the first place?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Vic Mackey View Post
                Myles Rowe was really handled poorly. A driver with that much inactivity and a brand new team always should've been looked at as a multi-year process. I get that Francis is the better prospect and throwing their weight behind him, but if you're only going to put half the effort needed into developing a driver like Rowe and then toss him out, what was the point of starting with him in the first place?
                I tend to agree with your thoughts. I followed the Myle Rowe results pretty closely and he performance admirably, including a very impressive win while in tricky conditions. I would have liked to think he'd get another year. Maybe he will with somebody else.
                RHR: "I'm a proud American boy right now!" -2014 Indy 500 Victory Lane

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                • #9
                  I don't generally like programs that are specific to a person's racial background, but I don't see how running Ernie Francis Jr (as impressive as he is) fulfills the Force Indy Mission of young black talent development. I'm confused by this new direction.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by bennybigb View Post
                    I don't generally like programs that are specific to a person's racial background, but I don't see how running Ernie Francis Jr (as impressive as he is) fulfills the Force Indy Mission of young black talent development. I'm confused by this new direction.
                    Well he's both young (23) and black. Not sure what's confusing about it.

                    RHR: "I'm a proud American boy right now!" -2014 Indy 500 Victory Lane

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                    • #11
                      I did not realize he was black. This hire makes complete sense, Ernie sure seems to be the real deal. Best of luck Francis Jr and Force Indy! And I hope Rowe is able to land somewhere as well. I think he did a great job on a rookie team after a 4 year break from driving.

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                      • #12
                        Bummed for Myles Rowe. Got to know him and his dad when he first got into cars. He was fast and winning against good experience relative to to his experience, but they were on a shoestring. I hope someone picks him up, or he gets on the Mazda sports car train.
                        “America is all about speed. Hot, nasty, badass speed.” - Eleanor Roosevelt

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                        • #13
                          https://www.indystar.com/story/sport...we/6094383001/

                          Force Indy, funded by RP, is all but assured of a move to Lights with Ernie Jr. next year. Miles Rowe's time with the team has ended for now, though "Force Indy has helped Rowe obtain a ride for the IMS test later this month with another USF2000 team with the hope that the momentum of the Race for Equality and Change initiative can continue through his involvement in the series -- even if it's not with Force Indy."
                          "If your car was a dog, then you had to figure it out and test your own limits. And we didn't go to a wind tunnel – we did it in the first turn at Indianapolis."

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Vic Mackey View Post
                            Myles Rowe was really handled poorly. A driver with that much inactivity and a brand new team always should've been looked at as a multi-year process. I get that Francis is the better prospect and throwing their weight behind him, but if you're only going to put half the effort needed into developing a driver like Rowe and then toss him out, what was the point of starting with him in the first place?
                            I agree. As I said in another Indycar for Penske to leave Paretta Autosport and Myles Rowe to basically fend for themselves does not reflect well on the series or Roger. It seems as if he did those things to give Indycar and himself a good image but when their usefulness was gone then he just sort of cut them loose. Things like diversity and helping a young person grow as a driver isn't something you just do for a year or a race then cut them it must be at least multi-year effort with enough support behind to make them successful. If they don't get it done after all is said and done then that's on them but for Penske to do one and done deals on both of these deals might not go well with fans. I'm glad Indycar is trying to give Ernie a chance but if that means sacrificing something else then I rather not have it happen this way.
                            "The only good horsepower is usable horsepower.."

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Hitokiri View Post

                              I agree. As I said in another Indycar for Penske to leave Paretta Autosport and Myles Rowe to basically fend for themselves does not reflect well on the series or Roger
                              Don’t know what you are talking about but that doesn’t seem fair or even correct. Roger provided technical support to Paretta and says in the article that is not changing. He won’t run extra car for her, that is correct he shouldn’t, this is not a charity.

                              That also applies to Myles. Its already bad that you get picked because of your skin color and Roger should not sugar daddy for anybody. He got him started, forward and now its up to Myles to show if he can swim. Supporting Francis is much better business decision after SRX showings and makes much more sense now.

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