News for the Week of June 27, 2016 – July 3, 2016

Brabham tests new USF2000 car – Matt Brabham tested the new 2017 Tatuus USF-17 car for USF2000 at Lucas Oil Raceway on Thursday. “It’s an honor to test the new chassis,” said Brabham. “Today went really smoothly. We had no issues and ran tons of laps. The systems in the car are a big upgrade compared to the old car, which makes it a lot more comfortable to drive.” Learn more at the link. – Team Murray – (7/1/2016)

Keselowski blogs on open wheel test – Brad Keselowski has posted a blog on his experience testing Team Penske’s No. 22 Verizon IndyCar Series car at Road America a couple weeks ago. It’s an interesting read. Check it out at the link. – Brad Keselowski – (7/1/2016)

Texas Motor Speedway announces ticketing and concession plan for Firestone 600 continuation – Texas Motor Speedway has released details regarding their ticket and concession policy for the continuation of the Firestone 600 on August 27th. All previously purchased tickets for the originally scheduled race will still be valid but all seating will be general admission on the frontstretch. New general admission tickets will be only $28, there will be $1 hot dogs and Coca-Cola products, along with many other great deals. Check it out at the link. – Texas Motor Speedway – (6/30/2016)

INDYCAR tests at Iowa – Iowa Speedway’s summary of the Verizon IndyCar Series team test on Wednesday June 29th is available at the link. Here’s what last year’s winner Ryan Hunter-Reay had to say: “It’s always great to be back at Iowa. I really enjoy this race track and it’s certainly one of my favorites. We have a long list of things to get through today, but with four cars and Andretti Autosport, hopefully we’ll start picking through that, hopefully if the rain lets up.” – Iowa Speedway – (6/30/2016)

INDYCAR in talks to return to Surfers Paradise – Australia’s Gold Coast Bulletin reports that “A private consortium is negotiating with Tourism and Events Queensland to bring (INDYCAR) back to the Gold Coast streets during an annual weeklong motorsports extravaganza.” “All our concern at the moment is on securing the approval through government to hold the event with IndyCars as the major attraction — 2017 is a possibility, 2018 is more than possible,” the consortium spokesman said. – Gold Coast Bulletin – (6/29/2016)

Grand Prix of Boston organizers make bankruptcy threat – The Boston Herald reports “The defunct Grand Prix of Boston is “well short” of funds to refund ticket holders and plans to file for bankruptcy unless former vendors, staffers and consultants pitch in to pay the $1.7 million tab, according to a letter from the race promoter’s attorney.” That would include INDYCAR needing to refund part of the sanctioning fee in order to avoid being part of a lawsuit (though even that wouldn’t’ be enough). – Boston Herald – (6/29/2016)

Big test at Iowa planned for Wednesday – A Verizon IndyCar Series team test is scheduled for Wednesday, June 29th at Iowa Speedway. 19 of the 22 current full-time teams are scheduled to participate. Check out the full list at the link. – The Open Wheel – (6/29/2016)

IMS to build dirt track inside Turn 3 – Curt Cavin of the Indianapolis Star reports that Indianapolis Motor Speedway is going to build a 3/16th-mile dirt oval inside of Turn 3 of the big oval as a tribute to Tony Stewart. Cavin says the track won’t be finished for its debut for a Stewart media appearance on July 5th, but it will be developed further afterwards, and the area will still be used for parking when necessary. “Tony doesn’t want gifts, per se, but we thought this was a great way to marry his love for dirt-track racing with his love for racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway,” Boles told the Indianapolis Star. More details at the link. – Indianapolis Star – (6/29/2016)

Miller’s Mailbag 6/29/16 – RACER’s Robin Miller’s weekly fan Q&A is a great read as always. – RACER – (6/29/2016)

Trackside podcast 6/28/16 – 1070 The Fan’s Trackside with Curt Cavin and Kevin Lee radio show from 6/28/16 is a great listen as always. The pair recaps the weekend in Road America and are joined by countless guests throughout the show. – 1070 The Fan – (6/29/2016)

Negrao wants INDYCAR stay – Well-experienced Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Indy Lights rookie Andre Negrao wants to remain in INDYCAR next year whether it’s in the Verizon IndyCar Series or another year in Indy Lights. “[Graduating] depends how the championship ends, but if I can test an Indy car at the end of the year, it would be great,” Negrao told RACER. “I’m used to driving fast cars in GP2 and World Series [by Renault], so I’m looking forward to driving in the IndyCar Series and my target is to go next year. If I can’t do that, I’ll do one more year in Indy Lights, but this is where I want to stay.” – RACER – (6/28/2016)

Menards on board for Team Penske/Pagenaud for Iowa & Pocono – Simon Pagenaud announced on Twitter on Tuesday that Menards has extended its sponsorship of the Team Penske No. 22 car he drives for races upcoming Verizon IndyCar at Iowa Speedway and Pocono Raceway. – Simon Pagenaud – (6/28/2016)

Panther’s National Guard Federal case dismissed – Panther Brands LLC (Panther Racing) had its longstanding lawsuit over the loss of its Army National Guard sponsorship dismissed from a Federal court on Tuesday. Full details at the link. – The Indiana Lawyer – (6/28/2016)

Iowa poses big challenge for injured Newgarden – Josef Newgarden’s perseverance at Road America to not only drive the whole race but to do it well with a P8 finish was impressive but he knows Iowa Speedway will be a tougher challenge. “The hand hurt a lot,” Newgarden said. “I was struggling to hold onto the wheel at the end there on the [soft tires]. The collarbone was really good. I think my clavicle is not going to be too big of a problem. I just have to get my hand sorted for Iowa. I’ll be in ice and in bed. I’m probably going to a therapist to see what else I can do to get it ready to go in two weeks at Iowa. That place is going to be harder than here.” – RACER – (6/28/2016)

Stoneman, Urrutia, and Jones placed on probation – From Indy Lights: “Three drivers today were placed on probation by Race Director Tony Cotman following Rounds 8 and 9 of Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires competition at Road America this past weekend. Dean Stoneman of Andretti Autosport, Santiago Urrutia of Schmidt Peterson Motorsports w/ Curb-Agajanian and Ed Jones of Carlin have been placed on probation through the end of the 2016 season for misconduct leading up to and including the Road America event. If Stoneman, Urrutia and/or Jones are involved in any additional incidents including unsportsmanlike conduct and dangerous or over aggressive driving as determined by the Race Director, they will be penalized with the loss of a minimum of 10 championship points.” “The notices issued do not preclude a driver from racing hard, but serve as a reminder on how to race over the final eight rounds of the championship,” said Cotman. – Indy Lights – (6/27/2016)

Massachusetts Attorney General demands ticket refund plan from GP of Boston organizers – Boston.com reports that Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey has given Grand Prix of Boston orgnaizers until the end of the day on Monday, June 27th, to produce a plan to refund outstanding ticket orders or “or else the state will move forward with legal action.” UPDATE: Boston.com reports Michael J. Goldberg, an attorney and spokesman for Boston Grand Prix, “said the local IndyCar race organizing entity was “working diligently” toward a plan to fully reimburse ticket holders, after it reportedly exhausted its funds to do so.” – Boston.com – (6/27/2016)

Pigot named as Mazda Racing driver for IMSA Watkins Glen – Spencer Pigot will drive for Mazda Racing’s No. 55 entry in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen at Watkins Glen International this weekend. – Mazda Racing – (6/27/2016)

NBCSN’s RA broadcast earns 0.44 TV rating – NBCSN’s broadcast of the Verizon IndyCar Series KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America drew a 0.44 TV rating. Adam Stern reports it’s NBCSN’s highest rated INDYCAR race of the year. – ShowBuzzDaily – (6/27/2016)

Chaves to drive for DeltaWing at Watkins Glen – Panoz DeltaWing Racing announced on Monday morning that Gabby Chaves will join former INDYCAR competitors Katherine Legge and Sean Rayhall as drivers for the team’s entry in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen at Watkins Glen International this weekend. “I’m really excited and looking forward to joining the team once again,” said Chaves. “The car has looked extremely competitive with all the development over the last year, and I can’t wait to see what we can do in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen.” – DeltaWing – (6/27/2016)

RA president estimates race day crowd of over 50,000 – Road America President George Bruggenthies told the Indianapolis Star’s Curt Cavin that the Sunday crowd for the KOHLER Grand Prix was estimated to be at least 50,000 people. Road America also announced that this year was the first year of a three-year deal with INDYCAR through 2018. – Indianapolis Star – (6/27/2016)

Road America confirms 2017 INDYCAR date – Per Road America’s Twitter account, INDYCAR will return to Road America next year for the KOHLER Grand Prix on June 25th, 2017. – Road America – (6/26/2016)

Power dominates in KOHLER Grand Prix win – Team Penske’s Will Power won from pole in dominant fashion in the Verizon IndyCar’s return to Road America for the KOHLER Grand Prix. The rest of the Top 5 was Kanaan, Rahal, Hunter-Reay, and Castroneves. Scott Dixon dropped out of the race early with mechanical problems but late engine problems for Simon Pagenaud caused him to drop from P2 to P13 so the damage wasn’t as bad as it could have been for Dixon. Full race results here. – INDYCAR – (6/26/2016)

Urrutia wins wild Lights Race 2 at Road America – An early morning barrage of rain caused a wet start to Indy Lights Race 2 at Road America and Santiago Urrutia thrived in the resulting craziness to score his second win of the season. The rest of the Top 5 was Negrao, Veach, Claman De Melo, and Blackstock. Full race results here. – Indy Lights – (6/26/2016)

Power wins pole for KOHLER Grand Prix – Team Penske’s Will Power won the pole for the KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America with a lap of 1:42.2105. The rest of the Firestone Fast 6 finishing order was Dixon, Kanaan, Pagenaud, Castroneves, and Rahal. Full qualifying results here. – INDYCAR – (6/25/2016)

Veach dominates in Lights Race 1 win at Road America – Belardi Auto Racing’s Zach Veach won his first Indy Lights race of the season in Race 1 at Road America by leading all 20 laps. The rest of the Top 5 was Stoneman, Serralles, Jones, and Claman De Melo. Full results here. – Indy Lights – (6/25/2016)

Firestone 600 competition plan announced – “INDYCAR announced today its plan for resuming the Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway that was suspended June 12 after completing 71 of its scheduled 248 laps. The Verizon IndyCar Series race will be completed Aug. 27. The No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing Honda driven by Conor Daly and No. 21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet driven by Josef Newgarden will not be permitted to participate in the continuation due to the extensive chassis and engine damage each sustained in a crash on Lap 42. James Hinchcliffe of Schmidt Peterson Motorsports is the race leader after 71 laps. Cars continuing in the race will be permitted to use the chassis and engine of their choice for the completion day. Tire allotment and fuel quantity for the completion are yet to be determined. Pre-race aero setups from the June event will be mandatory for the August completion, though INDYCAR may make changes prior to the completion based on the weather forecast for race weekend. The remaining 177 race laps will be run at the conclusion of the Aug. 27 schedule.” – INDYCAR – (6/24/2016)

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