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Author Archives: Huston Ladner

Huston Ladner
Promoted to editor this season, Huston works through some of the site’s biggest columns while writing one of his own: Happiness Is… (Fridays). “Stranded” on the islands of Hawaii, the aspiring college professor also helps anchor our IndyCar and Formula One racing coverage while coordinating Pace Laps, our multi-series news update (Mondays) each week.
Pace Laps: Settling Safety, Farewells At Watkins Glen

Pace Laps: Settling Safety, Farewells At Watkins Glen

Sprint Cup: Watkins Glen Odds & Ends - One of the things that makes Formula One racing successful is the commitment the series expects from its viewing constituency.  Races typically conclude in a two-hour window, and when it seems that might not be the case, due to weather, an accident, or some other issue, F1 switches to a timed format.  Might this kind of practice be suitable for NASCAR? The airing of the Cup race at Watkins Glen seemed to last ... Read More »

Happiness Is… Indifference Darian Grubb & The Glen

Happiness Is… Indifference Darian Grubb & The Glen

Well, Pocono was fun.  Or something. At one point it seemed more like bumper cars at 200 mph than actual racing.  Then again, who ever expected the Big One to happen at the triangle, a track long considered one of the most boring?  The overall culmination felt like a disjointed mess of a race, which means it’s not all that surprising that the ratings once again equaled those of a daytime re-run of Covert Affairs. No need to harp on ... Read More »

IndyCar Breakdown: Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio

IndyCar Breakdown: Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio

In a Nutshell: The race began with a bang as drivers eager for the green flag got a bit excited as they hit the gas.  The wreck brought about a rare caution for IndyCar at Mid-Ohio.  Scott Dixon cruised home for the win, his fifth at the track in the last eight races.  Polesitter Sebastien Bourdais earned second, followed by James Hinchcliffe, who got his best finish of the year.  Carlos Munoz took fourth, and Graham Rahal followed in fifth, ... Read More »

Pace Laps: Pocono Oddity, Iowa Adventures, Ohio Excellence, and More

Cup: Strange Results from Pocono It’s not a surprise that Dale Earnhardt, Jr. won at Pocono.  He raced with the leaders all race long and his crew chief, Steve Letarte, made a brilliant strategy call that put him in the best position to win. But what about the rest of the field? Kyle Busch completed just 23 laps before his engine lost its song and he parked his car. And in Jimmie Johnson‘s case, is Chad Knaus testing out some ... Read More »

Happiness Is… A Storybook Career, Sigh of Relief & Those Open Wheelers

Happiness Is… A Storybook Career, Sigh of Relief & Those Open Wheelers

Sigh of relief. Everyone can thank Jeff Gordon for putting a stop the Ford juggernaut.  The win streak, of four in a row, was getting out of hand and some other manufacturer needed to be represented in victory lane. There’s a couple interesting things about the string that Ford had just put together, with the first being that it had taken so long, the last being in 2001.  Perhaps lurking beneath that is how average Toyota has been this year, ... Read More »

Happiness Is… Hot Head Stevens, Statistics & Making an Entrance

Happiness Is… Hot Head Stevens, Statistics & Making an Entrance

More weeknight racing, please. Other Frontstretchers have asserted that nighttime races aren’t as good as the daytime events.  That’s fine, and Sunday afternoons have their place, but maybe not every week, and Wednesday’s truck race showed how likeable mid-week racing can be. As NASCAR continues to stick its head in the sand about making any schedule changes that might excite the fanbase, weeknight racing seems to be one of the coolest ideas that gets overlooked.  During these summer months, when ... Read More »

Open Wheel Wednesday: WTH Was That

Open Wheel Wednesday: WTH Was That

The IndyCar Series has been somewhat lucky so far this year.  Unlike the monster that is motorsports in the U.S., NASCAR, the open wheel series had managed to avoid one of those things that aggravates holding competition: rain. For a racing series that needs all the positives it can get, being able to run the races when scheduled just seems like an easy aspect.  But nothing is easy anymore.  The first of two races in Houston gave just that sort ... Read More »

Happiness Is…Ford, Foreign Countries and Getting Paid

Happiness Is…Ford, Foreign Countries and Getting Paid

It’s time to hammer down on NASCAR’s superficial Topic of the Week, sponsored by Prune Candy.  For this week’s edition, it’s the Joey Logano – Morgan Shepherd incident.  Heard enough about it?  Read enough about it?  Any fan of the sport should be able to check the Yes box on that one. Much of the redress has been supportive for Shepherd, stating that by NASCAR’s rules he had every right to be out on the track at New Hampshire.  Then ... Read More »

IndyCar Preview: Honda Indy Toronto – 2 in TO

IndyCar Preview: Honda Indy Toronto – 2 in TO

Last week’s race at Iowa came across as quite the show.  It featured good racing, a brainfart or two, and a strategic move that determined the winner.  When Ryan Hunter-Reay came into the pits for four fresh Firestones, no one anticipated that he’d be able to make his way to the front as easily as he did.  The win helped ease the pain of a rough slew of races for Hunter-Reay since he won the Indianapolis 500. While the win ... Read More »

Pace Laps: NASCAR Innovation, IndyCar Iowa, and More

Pace Laps: NASCAR Innovation, IndyCar Iowa, and More

Did you miss an event during this busy week in racing? How about a late-night press release, an important sponsorship rumor, or a juicy piece of news? If you did, you’ve come to the right place! Each Monday, The Frontstretch will break down the racing, series by series, to bring you the biggest stories that you need to watch going forward for the week ahead. Let our experts help you get up to speed, no matter what series you might ... Read More »