INDYCAR Grand Prix Race Preview

“There is no better time of the year than May in Indy. Every year IMS becomes more and more special to me, and I spend the entire year thinking about returning. We’re lucky to have two races in the same month at the best racetrack in the world. Obviously, we’re all looking forward to putting a frustrating start to the season behind us and we’ll be working hard this weekend at the INDYCAR Grand Prix to get top results for the DHL team.”

Fast Facts

Track: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, a 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course (clockwise)

Race distance: 85 laps / 207.315 miles

Entry List: INDYCAR Grand Prix (PDF)

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

Firestone tire allotment: Seven sets primary, four sets alternate (Note: An eighth set of primary tires is available to any car fielding a rookie driver or those outside the top 10 in entrant points.)

Twitter: @IMS @IndyCar, #INDYCARGP, #IndyCar

Event website: www.ims.com

INDYCAR website: www.IndyCar.com

2016 race winner: Simon Pagenaud (No. 22 Menards Team Penske Chevrolet)

2016 Verizon P1 Award winner: Simon Pagenaud (No. 22 Menards Team Penske Chevrolet),1:08.7696, 127.832 mph

Qualifying lap record: Will Power, 1:08.6746, 127.855 mph, May 13, 2016 (Set in Round 1 of knockout qualifying)

ABC race broadcast: Saturday, May 13 (3:30 p.m. ET, live)

Allen Bestwick will be the play-by-play announcer for ABC’s broadcast of the INDYCAR Grand Prix alongside analysts Eddie Cheever and Scott Goodyear. Pit reporters are Rick DeBruhl, Dr. Jerry Punch and Jon Beekhuis.

Radio broadcasts: The Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network is led by chief announcer Mark Jaynes, with analyst Davey Hamilton. All Verizon IndyCar Series races are broadcast live on network affiliates, Sirius 212, XM 209, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and the INDYCAR Mobile app. Qualifying broadcasts are available on Sirius 212, XM 209, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and the INDYCAR Mobile app. Practice sessions are on IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and the INDYCAR Mobile app.

Video Streaming: All practice sessions and qualifying for the INDYCAR Grand Prix 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 of the app for Verizon Wireless customers will stream live through the app and include enhanced real-time 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, May 12
9:15-10 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice 1, streaming on RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
12:25-1:10 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice 2, streaming on RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
1:15-1:30 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series pit stop practice
4:20 p.m. – Qualifying for the Verizon P1 Award (three rounds of Verizon IndyCar Series knockout qualifications), streaming on RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)

Saturday, May 13
11-11:30 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series warmup, streaming on RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
3:30 p.m. – ABC on air
3:43 p.m. – “Drivers, start your engines”
3:50 p.m. – INDYCAR Grand Prix (85 laps/207.3 miles), ABC (Live)

Race Notes:

  • Simon Pagenaud finds himself in a familiar position heading to the INDYCAR Grand Prix. The defending Verizon IndyCar Series champion claimed his first career oval win at the Desert Diamond West Valley Phoenix Grand Prix on April 29. Pagenaud, who has won two of the three previous races on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s road course, took the points lead with the win and leads four-time series champion Scott Dixon by 18 heading into this weekend’s race.
  • The INDYCAR Grand Prix will be the fourth Indy car event conducted on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s road course. Simon Pagenaud and Will Power are the only drivers to have won on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. Pagenaud won the inaugural race in 2014 and again in 2016, Power won the race in 2015.
  • Simon Pagenaud, Will Power and Sebastian Saavedra are the only drivers to have won the pole position on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. Saavedra claimed the pole in 2014, Power in 2015 and Pagenaud in 2016.
  • Two drivers have won the race from the pole: Will Power in 2015 and Simon Pagenaud in 2016.
  • Charlie Kimball has finished fifth in the three previous races held on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. He is the only driver to finish in the top five in every race held on the IMS road course.
  • Sixteen drivers have competed in every Indy car race on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course – Marco Andretti, Sebastien Bourdais, Helio Castroneves, Scott Dixon, Jack Hawksworth, James Hinchcliffe, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Tony Kanaan, Charlie Kimball, Juan Pablo Montoya, Carlos Munoz, Josef Newgarden, Simon Pagenaud, Will Power, Graham Rahal and Takuma Sato. All but Hawksworth are entered this year.
  • Rookie Ed Jones will race Verizon IndyCar Series cars on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s road course for the first time this weekend. Jones, the 2016 Indy Lights champion, has competed and won at the circuit in the Mazda Road to Indy.
  • Tony Kanaan seeks to start his 270th consecutive race this weekend, which would extend his Indy car record streak that began in June 2001 at Portland. Teammate Scott Dixon has made 211 consecutive starts heading into the weekend and will break a tie with Jimmy Vasser for the second-longest streak in Indy car racing should he start the race.
  • Helio Castroneves will attempt to make his 332nd career Indy car start, which ranks fourth on the all-time list. Tony Kanaan will attempt to make his 331st Indy car start, which is fifth all-time. Both are competing in their 20th season of Indy car racing in 2017.
  • Since 2012, the Verizon IndyCar Series has averaged 8.75 different race winners per season, including a record-tying 11 winners in 2014. There were eight different winners in the 16 races of 2016 with an equally tight competition projected for the 2017 season. There have been four different winners in the four races thus far this season.
  • Drivers may engage their “push-to-pass” for a total of 200 seconds during the race, with a maximum duration of 20 seconds for any one activation. The push-to-pass is not available on the initial race start or any restart unless it occurs in the final two laps or three minutes of a timed race. The feature increases the power of the engine by approximately 60 horsepower for 2017.
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