News for the Week of June 26, 2017 – July 2, 2017

Pigot earns podium finish in IMSA at WGI – Spencer Pigot was part of the Mazda Motorsports No. 55 team that finished third overall in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen on Sunday at Watkins Glen International. Indy Lights rookie Pato O’Ward won in the Prototype Challenge class with the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports team. Sage Karam and Tristan Vautier each drove in the race as well. Full IMSA results from WGI at the link. – IMSA – (7/2/2017)

Report: CGRT fined and penalized for RA infractions – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports Chip Ganassi Racing Teams was penalized and fined by INDYCAR for infractions on their No. 9 and No. 83 cars at Road America. Check out the full report at the link. – RACER – (6/30/2017)

Honda identifies problem causing reliability issues – Mark Robinson has a story on INDYCAR.com detailing Honda’s year in the Verizon IndyCar Series. Robinson reports Honda has “pinpointed” the issue causing its reliability issues and that a fix is coming as Honda builds and rolls out new engines. Art St. Cyr, the president of Honda Performance Development, told INDYCAR.com he expects most of the Honda cars to have the updated engines for the Honda Indy Toronto. Full story at the link. – INDYCAR – (6/30/2017)

Gehl to sponsor RLL No. 15 at Iowa – “Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLLR) announced today that the Gehl brand, part of Manitou Americas, Inc., will be the primary sponsor for Graham Rahal’s No. 15 Honda-powered entry at the Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway July 9. Gehl was co-primary sponsor of Rahal’s entry at this past weekend’s KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America for the second consecutive year and has increased their involvement.” Full release at the link. – RLL – (6/29/2017)

Bourdais aiming for WGI return – Jim Ayello of the Indianapolis Star has an excellent update on Sebastien Bourdais with plenty of quotes from the driver who is now aiming for a Verizon IndyCar Series return at Watkins Glen International on the first weekend of September. “It’s very important for me, for the team, for the future,” Bourdais told the Indianapolis Star. “I felt like we were starting to build something pretty special…I think it’s quite important to make sure there is no discontinuity. … We’re going to kickstart the 2018 season and just do our thing. Instead of, not that I’m second-guessing myself, but in racing you always have to prove yourself.” Full story at the link. – Indianapolis Star – (6/29/2017)

Gutierrez hopeful his position can attract Mexican INDYCAR event – Esteban Gutierrez told David Malsher of AUTOSPORT that he’s hopeful his participation in the Verizon IndyCar Series can lead to an INDYCAR event in Mexico. “Together with my involvement in IndyCar, I’m sure that the possibilities in the future for a Mexican race will increase.” Full report with more quotes from Gutierrez at the link. – AUTOSPORT – (6/28/2017)

Wickens not interested in INDYCAR full-time – NBC Sports’ Luke Smith has an informative piece with quotes from Robert Wickens on his weekend at Road America with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. “Not really, to be honest,” Wickens told Mercedes’ ‘Tales from the Paddock’ press newsletter when asked if he wanted an INDYCAR switch. “I just want to race cars. That’s the main thing. I have no urge to leave the DTM at the moment.” However, he goes on to say he enjoyed his Verizon IndyCar Series experience at Road America. “I definitely wanted to do the full weekend, but the full-time driver got his immigration stuff sorted and he made it to the race track by Friday night. My duties were finished, but it was still a really fun Friday.” Full report at the link. – NBC Sports – (6/28/2017)

Hildebrand talks ECR Iowa test – RACER’s Marshall Pruett has a great piece with quotes from JR Hildebrand on the Verizon IndyCar Series test at Iowa Speedway on Tuesday. “It was a good day,” Hildebrand told RACER. “We unloaded and felt pretty good because we were fast here last year and got what we expected when we rolled out…The left-side tires are different this year, and by the sound of it, everybody was having to make some changes to get them to a place that worked with the setups they had. We had to make some adjustments, but I think the race will be similar to last year.” Much more at the link. – RACER – (6/28/2017)

Miller’s Mailbag 6/28/17 – RACER’s Robin Miller’s weekly fan Q&A is a great read as always. – RACER – (6/28/2017)

Trackside podcast 6/27/17 – 1070 The Fan’s Trackside with Curt Cavin and Kevin Lee radio show from 6/27/17 is a great listen as always. Scott Dixon, Ed Jones, and Mark Jaynes are guests on the show. – 1070 The Fan – (6/28/2017)

Belardi adds Lights car for Boat at Iowa and Gateway – “Belardi Auto Racing announced today that second generation open-wheel driver Chad Boat will make his Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires debut at Iowa Speedway on Sunday, July 9. Additionally, Boat will compete in the No. 84 Dallara IL-15 at Gateway Motorsports Park on Saturday, August 26 with the team. Pristine Auction, the premier autographed sports memorabilia auction house in the US, will serve as the primary sponsor for both events.” Full release at the link. – Indy Lights – (6/27/2017)

0.37 TV rating for NBCSN’s Road America broadcast – NBCSN’s television broadcast of the KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America drew a 0.37 TV rating. That’s up from a 0.33 last year according to Adam Stern. – Adam Stern – (6/27/2017)

MillerCoors to sponsor Pole Night at Gateway – “Gateway Motorsports Park today announced local beer distributor Robert ‘Chick’ Fritz, Inc. and MillerCoors will sponsor qualifying day for the Verizon IndyCar Series’ Bommarito Automotive Group 500 presented by Valvoline. The Coors Light Pole Night Showdown will take place on Friday, August 25 on the seventh day of the inaugural St. Louis Speed Festival.” Full release at the link. – Gateway Motorsports Park – (6/27/2017)

10 cars testing at Iowa on Tuesday – TrackSide Online reports 10 Verizon IndyCar Series cars are testing at Iowa Speedway on Tuesday. Dale Coyne Racing, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, Ed Carpenter Racing, Andretti Autosport, and Schmidt Peterson Motorsports are all at Iowa. Esteban Gutierrez will be testing on an oval for the first time. – TrackSide Online – (6/27/2017)

Monday Musings: KOHLER Grand Prix – Check out The Open Wheel’s Dylan Reynolds’ assorted thoughts after the Verizon IndyCar Series and Indy Lights weekend at Road America. – The Open Wheel – (6/26/2017)

Sunday Road America photo gallery – The Open Wheel’s Parker Hall’s photo gallery from Sunday action from Road America is available at the link. Includes tons of great photos from Verizon IndyCar Series and Indy Lights action throughout the day. – The Open Wheel – (6/26/2017)

Dixon wins his first race of the season at Road America – Chip Ganassi Racing Team’s Scott Dixon won his first race of the 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series season at the KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America. The rest of the Top 5 was Newgarden, Castroneves, Pagenaud, and Power. Dixon passed Newgarden on the first restart of the race and never looked back. Kanaan was the only DNF of the race after this scary incident. Full race results here. – INDYCAR – (6/25/2017)

Claman De Melo grabs first Indy Lights win in Race 2 at Road America – Carlin’s Zachary Claman De Melo won his first race in Indy Lights in Race 2 at Road America after a pass on Herta in Turn 1 on Lap 5. The rest of the Top 5 was Kaiser, Herta, Leist, and Telitz. Full Race 2 results here. – Indy Lights – (6/25/2017)

Report: Andretti talking to Chevy about potential switch – Adam Stern of the Sports Business Journal reports according to several of his sources Andretti Autosport has been talking to Chevy about a potential switch. Here’s his tweet: “Several sources in IndyCar paddock are saying to keep an eye on @FollowAndretti talking to @TeamChevy about a possible switch to the Bowtie.” – Adam Stern – (6/25/2017)

Saturday Road America photo gallery – The Open Wheel’s Parker Hall’s photo gallery from Saturday action from Road America is available at the link. Includes tons of great photos from Verizon IndyCar Series and Indy Lights action throughout the day. – The Open Wheel – (6/24/2017)

Castroneves wins 50th career pole at Road America – Helio Castroneves won his 50th career pole position in the Verizon IndyCar Series as Team Penske swept the Top 4 positions in qualifying for the KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America on Saturday with a lap of 1:41.3007. The rest of the Firestone Fast 6 qualifying order was Power, Newgarden, Pagenaud, Dixon, and Rahal. Full results here. – INDYCAR – (6/24/2017)

Leist wins from pole in Lights Race 1 at Road America – Carlin’s Matheus Leist won Indy Lights Race 1 at Road America from pole leading all 20 laps. The rest of the Top 5 was Urrutia, Kaiser, Norman, and Piedrahita. Full Race 1 results here. – Indy Lights – (6/24/2017)

Electronics upgrade coming with ’18 universal aero kit – RACER’s Marshall Pruett reports that INDYCAR is planning on implementing “new engine controllers and other associated electronics” as part of the roll out of the 2018 universal aero kit in the Verizon IndyCar Series next year. A new dash is also being considered. Full report with estimated costs at the link. – RACER – (6/23/2017)

DCR officially names Gutierrez as No. 18 driver for remainder of the season – “Esteban Gutierrez is returning behind the wheel of the #18 Dale Coyne Racing entry this weekend for the KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America as he will be replacing the injured Sebastien Bourdais for the remainder of the Verizon IndyCar Series season.” Full release at the link. – Dale Coyne Racing – (6/22/2017)

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