Honda Indy Toronto Race Preview

“Toronto is such a great track and is a great city. It’s one of my favorite cities to go to and Racing for Cancer is having The Rally there this year, co-hosted with James Hinchcliffe. It’s going to be a fun weekend, and hopefully, we can go for win No. 2 for the DHL team in Toronto. Going from a short oval to a road course, you just really climb in and go for it. Toronto is a really challenging circuit with a very small margin for error, so we’ll have to work hard.”

Fast Facts

Track: Streets of Toronto’s Exhibition Place, an 11-turn, 1.786-mile temporary street course

Race distance: 85 laps / 151.81 miles

Push-to-pass parameters: 200 seconds of total time with a maximum time of 20 seconds per activation.

Firestone tire allotment: Six sets primary, four sets alternate. Teams must use one set of primary and one new set of alternate tires in the race.

Twitter: @HondaIndy, @IndyCar, #IndyTO, #IndyCar

Event website: www.HondaIndyToronto.com

INDYCAR website: www.IndyCar.com

2016 race winner: Will Power (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet)

2016 Verizon P1 Award winner: Scott Dixon (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet), 59.9073 seconds, 107.326 mph

Qualifying record: Gil de Ferran, 57.143 seconds, 110.565 mph, July 17, 1999 (Note: Will Power set a qualifying mark of 59.7747 seconds, 107.564 mph for the current layout in 2016.)

NBCSN television broadcasts: Qualifying, 6:30 p.m. ET Saturday, July 15 (same-day delay); Race, 3 p.m. ET Sunday, July 16, CNBC/Sportsnet 360 (live); 7 p.m. ET Sunday, July 17, NBCSN (re-air); Kevin Lee is the lead announcer for the NBCSN broadcasts this weekend alongside analysts Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy. Pit reporters are Jon Beekhuis, Katie Hargitt, Anders Krohn and Robin Miller.

Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network broadcasts: Mark Jaynes is the chief announcer alongside analyst Davey Hamilton. Jake Query and Nick Yeoman are the turn announcers with Dave Furst, Rob Howden and Jim Murphy reporting from the pits. All Verizon IndyCar Series races are broadcast live on network affiliates, Sirius 214, XM 209, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app. All Verizon IndyCar Series practice and qualifying sessions are available on IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app.

Video streaming: All practice sessions and qualifying for the Honda Indy Toronto will stream live on RaceControl.IndyCar.com and on the INDYCAR YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/indycar)

INDYCAR Mobile app: Verizon’s INDYCAR Mobile app is available across all carriers. Exclusive features for Verizon Wireless customers will stream live through the app and include enhanced realtime leaderboard and car telemetry; live in-car camera video streaming for select drivers during Verizon IndyCar Series races; live driver and pit crew radio transmissions during races and live Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network audio streaming during all track activities.

At-track schedule (all times local):

Friday, July 14
10:40 – 11:25 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #1, RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
2:15 – 3 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #2, RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
3:05 – 3:20 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series pit stop practice

Saturday, July 15
10 – 10:45 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #3, RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
2:15 p.m. – Qualifying for the Verizon P1 Award (three rounds of knockout qualifying), RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live); NBCSN (Same-day delay, 6:30 p.m. ET)

Sunday, July 16
11:30 – Noon – Verizon IndyCar Series warmup, RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
3:02 p.m. – Driver introductions
3:40 p.m. – Command to start engines
3:47 p.m. – Honda Indy Toronto (85 laps/151.81 miles), CNBC/SportsNet 360 (Live)

Race notes:

  • There have been nine different winners in the 11 previous Verizon IndyCar Series races in 2017: Sebastien Bourdais (Streets of St. Petersburg), James Hinchcliffe (Streets of Long Beach), Josef Newgarden (Barber Motorsports Park), Simon Pagenaud (Phoenix Raceway), Will Power (INDYCAR Grand Prix and Texas Motor Speedway), Takuma Sato (Indianapolis 500), Graham Rahal (Raceway at Belle Isle-1 and Raceway at Belle Isle-2), Scott Dixon (Road America) and Helio Castroneves (Iowa Speedway). Bourdais’ win at St. Pete on March 12 gave him sole possession of sixth on the all-time Indy car victory list. Power’s win at Texas on June 10 tied him with Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy for ninth on the all-time list with 31 wins. Dixon’s win at Road America on June 25 was his 41st career victory and he will tie Michael Andretti for third all-time with his next win. Castroneves’ win at Iowa on July 9 ended a 54-race winless streak and gave him sole possession of 12th all-time with 30 wins.
  • The Honda Indy Toronto will be the 33rd Indy car race on the streets of Exhibition Place. Will Power won the race in 2016. The race marks the 50th anniversary of Indy car racing in Canada. Indy cars first raced at Mosport (now Canadian Tires Motorsport Park) in Bowmanville, Ontario in 1967. Twin 100-mile races were scheduled and Bobby Unser won both, though the second race was cut short because of rain.
  • The Honda Indy Toronto will be the eighth race on a road/street course in 2017. The first seven races were won by Sebastien Bourdais (Streets of St. Petersburg), James Hinchcliffe (Streets of Long Beach), Josef Newgarden (Barber Motorsports Park), Will Power (INDYCAR Grand Prix), Graham Rahal (Raceway at Belle Isle-1 and Raceway at Belle Isle-2) and Scott Dixon (Road America).
  • Will Power has won three times at Toronto, the most wins by an active Indy car driver at the track. He is among four past Toronto winners entered in this year’s race, along with Ryan Hunter-Reay (2012), Scott Dixon (2013) and Josef Newgarden (2015). Michael Andretti has the most wins at the track with seven.
  • The Verizon IndyCar Series champion has won in Toronto in four of the last eight seasons. Dario Franchitti, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Scott Dixon all won on the streets of Toronto before eventually claiming the championship. Franchitti won in 2009 and again in 2011. Hunter-Reay won in 2012 and Dixon swept both races in 2013. Seven other drivers have claimed the Indy car championship in the same season they won at Toronto. They are: Bobby Rahal (1986), Al Unser Jr. (1990), Michael Andretti (1991), Alex Zanardi (1998), Cristiano da Matta (2002), Paul Tracy (2003) and Sebastien Bourdais (2004).
  • Drivers who have won poles at Toronto entered in this year’s race are: Scott Dixon (2013 Race 2 and 2016), Will Power (2011 and 2015) and Helio Castroneves (2000). Castroneves also started on pole in Race 2 in 2014, but was awarded the pole based on entrant points.
  • Scott Dixon has finished on the podium in three of the last eight races at Toronto. He has seven top-five finishes in 12 starts.
  • Nineteen drivers entered in the event have competed in Indy car races at Toronto. Castroneves and Tony Kanaan (14) have the most starts among the entered drivers. Eleven of those drivers have led laps at the track (Will Power 161, Scott Dixon 151, Helio Castroneves 77, Josef Newgarden 37, Ryan Hunter-Reay 36, Simon Pagenaud 31, Tony Kanaan 23, Graham Rahal 23, Charlie Kimball 2, Conor Daly 1 and JR Hildebrand 1).
  • Chip Ganassi Racing has won six times at Toronto: Michael Andretti (1994), Alex Zanardi (1998), Dario Franchitti (2009 and 2011) and Scott Dixon (2013, both races). Team Penske has three wins at the track (Paul Tracy 1993 and Will Power 2010 and 2016). It has seven pole positions at the track: Danny Sullivan (1988 and 1990), Emerson Fittipaldi (1993), Helio Castroneves (2000), Gil de Ferran (2001) and Will Power (2011 and 2015).
  • Two rookies – Esteban Gutierrez and Ed Jones – are entered. Jones has raced at the circuit before in Indy Lights.
  • Tony Kanaan seeks to start his 277th consecutive race this weekend, which would extend his Indy car record streak that began in June 2001 at Portland. Teammate Scott Dixon has made 218 consecutive starts heading into the weekend, which is the second-longest streak in Indy car racing. Andretti Autosport’s Marco Andretti has made 194 consecutive starts, which is the fourth-longest streak in Indy car racing.
  • Helio Castroneves will attempt to make his 339th career Indy car start, which ranks third on the all-time list. Tony Kanaan is fourth all-time with 337 starts.
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