It’s Not the End of the World

News Tuesday afternoon that the anticipated 2.4 liter engine, set to debut in 2024, has been shelved sent a tsunami of gloom and doom through the Indycar fan base. Soaring production casts and issues with the new hybrid componen, as well as a lack of a third OEM, all contributed to the decision by Honda, Chevrolet, and the series to rake a step back.

The two engine manufacturers also had to redirect some of the resources for the new engine to help develop the ERS hybrid system.

The higher cost of the 2.4 liter twin turbo meant that fewer cars would be on the grid. Only as many as 12 cars, maybe fewer, could be supplied at that price. Indycar would have had a smaller grid, and likely a shrunken field for the 500.

Am I disappointed? Yes. i was looking forward to the sound of the bigger engine. Is the series doomed? I don’t think so. Indycar is coming off a great season and is anticipating a larger full time grid for the coming season. This is a setback, no doubt, but it prevents a shrinkage of the grid for 2024 and beyond.

I am more concerned about the series marketing efforts. When a new marketing director is on board, that needs a budget at least quadruple what it is now. The series has for far too long relied on others to promote for them. They need to be more proactive and give the new director more tools to work with.

While the optics of the engine n3ws looks bad, it is not the end of the world. Let’s enjoy what we have for now.

Fisher To Drive 2023 Corvette Z06 70th Anniversary Edition Pace Car at 106th Indianapolis 500 

IMS Image

From IMS:

 INDIANAPOLIS (Tuesday, May 10, 2022) –
Former INDYCAR SERIES driver and team owner Sarah Fisher, who remains the fastest woman in Indianapolis 500 history, will drive the 2023 Corvette Z06 70th Anniversary Edition Pace Car to lead the field to the green flag for the 106th Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 29 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Ohio native Fisher started “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” nine times between 2000 and 2010, a record for female drivers. Her fastest four-lap qualifying speed of 229.439 mph in 2002 also remains an event record for a female driver.
Fisher also was the first woman to win the pole position for a major North American open-wheel event, for the INDYCAR SERIES race in 2002 at Kentucky Speedway. She also was the first female driver to earn a top-three finish in INDYCAR SERIES competition, placing third in 2000 at Kentucky Speedway and second in 2001 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
After her driving career, Fisher turned to team ownership, providing two-time series champion Josef Newgarden with his first ride in the INDYCAR SERIES. Since her team ownership role ended, she stayed involved with the sport by serving as the Pace Car driver at selected NTT INDYCAR SERIES events.
She now co-owns with her husband, Andy O’Gara, the successful Speedway Indoor Karting facilities in Speedway, Indiana, and Daytona Beach, Florida, and is the mother of two children.
“Every time I’ve had the opportunity to drive at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, it’s been special – from INDYCAR SERIES cars to two-seaters to vintage cars,” Fisher said. “Driving the Pace Car is just as special of an honor. And to have served in that role for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES since Johnny Rutherford retired, I’ve had many great memories to add to my career.
“I am humbled and proud to become the official Pace Car driver for the 106th Indianapolis 500 and to represent the hard work and development that Chevrolet puts into these fantastic pieces of automobile advancement and technology.
”The 2023 Corvette Z06 is powered by the all-new 5.5L LT6 which creates 670 horsepower, making it the highest-horsepower naturally aspirated V-8 ever to hit the market in any production car. The Indianapolis 500 Corvette Z06 Pace Car exudes confidence with a wide stance and exotic mid-engine proportions. This year’s Pace Car is equipped with the available Z07 Performance Package, featuring a carbon fiber rear wing, aerodynamic ground effects, carbon ceramic brakes and more, for maximum track capability.
With a nod to Corvette’s 70-year history, the Pace Car is a model year 2023 70th Anniversary Edition Z06, finished in a special White Pearl Tri-Coat Metallic paint. Unique to this package on the production car and the Pace Car are 70th Anniversary Edition exterior badging, including special Corvette crossflags, Edge Red brake calipers and the 70th Anniversary Edition logo on seats, steering wheel and sill plates.
Chevrolet’s Performance Design Studio created an asymmetric stripe package specifically for the Pace Car that draws inspiration from the 70th Anniversary Edition badging on the door of the Z06.
“The Chevrolet Team is proud to pace the Indianapolis 500 for the 33rd time, while celebrating 70 years of Corvette,” said Steve Majoros, vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. “It’s only fitting the Indianapolis 500 will be the first race the 2023 Corvette Z06 paces, a truly special moment for Corvette and INDYCAR fans around the world.”
Chevrolet and Corvette have led the starting field more than any other manufacturer and nameplate, respectively. The 2022 race marks the 33rd time for Chevrolet to pace dating back to 1948, and the 19th time since 1978 for America’s favorite sports car.
“Sarah Fisher is an Indianapolis 500 icon who always takes the time to appreciate her fans and represent the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and ‘The Greatest Spectacle in Racing’ with class and humility,” IMS President J. Douglas Boles said. “She is such a fitting person for this honor, and it will be such a thrill and privilege to see her lead the field of 33 cars to the green flag before a huge crowd at the track and a global television audience.
“I’m sure Sarah will enjoy driving the 2023 Corvette Z06 70th Anniversary Edition, which is an incredible car with the performance to match its great looks.”
Visit for tickets and more information on all Month of May events and activities at IMS.
Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world’s largest car brands, available in 80 countries with more than 3.2 million cars and trucks sold in 2020. Chevrolet models include electric and fuel-efficient vehicles that feature engaging performance, design that makes the heart beat, passive and active safety features and easy-to-use technology, all at a value. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at

New Engine Test Moves to IMS Next Week; 20 Cars Test Next Thursday

Scott Dixon will be one of the first drivers to try out the new 2.4 liter Honda engine

The new 2.4 liter twin turbo V 6 engine will have its first on track test next Monday and Tuesday on the IMS road course. Team Penske and Chip Ganassi racing will test one Chevrolet and one Honda respectively. Josef Newgarden will drive the Penske car Monday and Will Power will test the new powerplant Tuesday. Scott Dixon will be the lone driver for Honda both days.

The engine was originally schedule for march 30 and 31 at Sebring.

The engines get their initial workouts on the old Formula 1 course to prevent either team from gaining an information advantage on the layout that Indycar uses for the GMR Grand Prix and the race on the NASCAR weekend.

The new engines will not have the hybrid components on board due to supply issues. The 2.4 liter engine and hybrid package will debut in the series in 2024. The hybrid components may be available by early summer.

On Thursday, March 31 the traditional IMS road course layout will host 20 cars from the NTT Indycar Series in a private test.

All full time drivers from A. J. Foyt Racing, Andretti Autosport, Juncos Hollinger racing, Meyer Shank Racing, Chip Ganassi Racing, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, and Arrow McLaren SP will participate. AMSP will also have Juan Pablo Montoya in a car. Montoya will drive in both the GMR Grand Prix and the Indianapolis 500 for the team.

Jack Harvey, injured in a practice crash at Texas last Saturday, will drive in the test if he is cleared to drive by then.

The IMS Museum parking lot is open to the public. Track facilities are closed during the test days.

Corvette Will Lead Field to Green

News from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway:

2021 Mid-Engine Corvette Stingray Convertible To Lead Field to Green Flag of 105thIndianapolis 500 Presented by Gainbridge

This is the 18th time a Chevrolet Corvette has paced ‘The Greatest Spectacle in Racing’

INDIANAPOLIS (Tuesday, May 11, 2021) – The 2021 mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette Stingray hardtop convertible will lead the 33-car field to the green flag for the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge on May 30, 2021. The Arctic White Stingray will be the first convertible since 2008 to pace the iconic race.

Chevrolet and Corvette have led the starting field more than any other manufacturer and nameplate, respectively. The 2021 race marks the 32nd time for Chevrolet to pace dating back to 1948, and the 18th time since 1978 for America’s favorite sports car.

“The Chevrolet team is privileged every time we’re invited to pace the Indianapolis 500,” said Steve Majoros, vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. “We are confident the track-capable Corvette Stingray Convertible will catch every race fan’s eye as it leads the pack toward the Yard of Bricks. From the color scheme, to the special race weekend decals and how the safety lighting is skillfully integrated into the nacelles of the hard-top convertible Corvette’s revolutionary appearance, we’re putting Chevrolet’s best on display for the fans.”

The exterior and interior of the Corvette Convertible will be on full display as the car fulfills responsibilities on and off track. Sky Cool Gray and Strike Yellow upholstery selected for the cabin influenced the racy exterior appearance of the pace car. A close look at the car reveals Indianapolis 500 logos adapted specifically for pace car use, an exclusive stripe package, unique Stingray decals and more.

For racers, highly visible safety lighting on the pace car is a top priority. Corvette designers prioritized form and function by incorporating four lights into each of the tonneau cover nacelles, in addition to strobe lights in the headlights, front louvers and taillights. This maintains the Corvette Convertible’s signature silhouette and eliminates need for a traditional lightbar.

“The 2021 Corvette Stingray hardtop convertible is such a world-class performance car that’s a perfect match to lead the talented field of 33 drivers to the green flag in ‘The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,’” Indianapolis Motor Speedway President J. Douglas Boles said. “We continue to be grateful for our strong, enduring partnership with Chevrolet and its many contributions to the success of our events and the exciting appeal of competition at the Racing Capital of the World.”

The mid-engine 2021 Corvette Stingray was engineered first and foremost as a convertible. The convertible maintains the tunnel-dominant structure and use of high-integrity die-cast parts found in the Stingray coupe.

Like the coupe, the Stingray convertible’s design was inspired by fighter jets. The tonneau cover features aerodynamically shaped nacelles influenced by the housing used for jet engines. The nacelles, which were also used as inspiration on the Chevrolet Engineering Research Vehicle (CERV) I and II, as well as the Corvette SS and SR2 concepts, help reduce air recirculation into the cabin and provide a remarkably exotic profile with the top up or down. The tonneau also provides a rear power-adjustable window and a vent for mid-engine cooling.

The 2021 Corvette Stingray convertible is powered by the next-generation 6.2L Small Block V-8 LT2 engine, the only naturally aspirated V-8 in the segment. It will produce 495 horsepower (369 kW) and 470 lb-ft (637 Nm) of torque when equipped with performance exhaust — the most horsepower and torque for any entry Corvette.

The LT2 is paired with Chevrolet’s first eight-speed dual-clutch transmission, which provides lightning-fast shifts and excellent power transfer. This transmission is uniquely designed to provide the best of both worlds: the spirited, directly connected feeling of a manual and the premium driving comfort of an automatic. The double-paddle de-clutch feature even allows the driver to disconnect the clutch by holding both paddles for more manual control.

When combined, the advanced propulsion system, revised chassis tuning and retractable hardtop make the Stingray the most no-compromise Corvette convertible in history.

Chevrolet has a storied history at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Chevrolet was founded in 1911, the year of the inaugural 500-mile race. Company co-founder and namesake Louis Chevrolet, along with brothers Arthur and Gaston, competed in early Indy 500s. Arthur competed in the 1911 race and Gaston won in 1920.

Nine drivers with Chevrolet engines have combined to win “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” 11 times, with Rick Mears, Emerson Fittipaldi, Arie Luyendyk, Al Unser Jr., Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan, Juan Pablo Montoya, Will Power and, most recently, Simon Pagenaud in 2019.

Team Chevy also has won the NTT INDYCAR SERIES manufacturer championship six times since 2012.

Visit for more information about this year’s schedule.

The race will be televised live on NBC for the third consecutive year, with the pre-race show starting at 11 a.m. The INDYCAR Radio Network will provide live coverage of the race to its affiliates and on Sirius 211, XM 205, and the INDYCAR Mobile App powered by NTT DATA.

About Indianapolis Motor Speedway

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the world’s largest spectator sporting facility, has been the worldwide leader in motorsports entertainment since opening in 1909. IMS is hosting the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge on Sunday, May 30, the world’s most prestigious auto race. The Month of May will start Saturday, May 15 with the GMR Grand Prix for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES on the IMS road course. The Speedway also will host the stars of the NASCAR Cup Series, NASCAR Xfinity Series and NTT INDYCAR SERIES on the same weekend Aug. 13-15 for three exciting races on the road course, including the first Cup Series race on the circuit Sunday, Aug. 15. IMS also will welcome the competitors of the Intercontinental GT Challenge Powered by Pirelli/GT Challenge World Challenge America and the ground-breaking Indy Autonomous Challenge on separate event weekends in October 2021. IMS, the NTT INDYCAR SERIES and IMS Productions are owned by Penske Corporation, a global transportation, automotive and motorsports leader. To purchase tickets or for more information, please visit

About Chevrolet

Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world’s largest car brands, available in 79 countries with more than 3.2 million cars and trucks sold in 2020. Chevrolet models include electric and fuel-efficient vehicles that feature engaging performance, design that makes the heart beat, passive and active safety features and easy-to-use technology, all at a value. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at in a new window).

Indycar Reaches Long Term Agreement with Honda and Chevy

Photo from Indycar
INDIANAPOLIS (Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020) – INDYCAR has reached a new, multi-year extension with engine partners Honda and Chevrolet, taking their partnership well into the end of the decade and providing stability and innovation for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. “To be able to announce a long-term, multi-year extension with our two great partners is phenomenal,” INDYCAR President Jay Frye said. “It’s an exciting time in INDYCAR with the innovations in the car, the new 2.4-liter engine and hybrid technology.” Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the introduction of the 2.4-liter, twin-turbocharged V-6 with hybrid technology will be delayed to the year 2023. Working in partnership with Chevrolet and Honda, the new engine will give the most exciting and competitive racing series in the world an additional 100 horsepower, ultimately producing over 900. “Honda welcomes this step to the future by INDYCAR, action that mirrors Honda’s efforts to develop and manufacture high-performance, electrified products that will meet industry challenges and delight our customers,” said Ted Klaus, president of Honda Performance Development. “At Honda, we race to develop our people, to innovate technologies and to engage fans. We are proud of our uninterrupted, 27-year leadership in INDYCAR, and look forward to delivering a next-generation Honda 2.4-liter hybrid power unit with more than 900 horsepower.” “Chevrolet has enjoyed great success since joining the NTT INDYCAR SERIES in 2012 with our 2.2-liter, twin-turbocharged, direct-injected V6 engine,” said Mark Reuss, president of General Motors. “We are thrilled to be moving forward with INDYCAR because it’s the perfect showcase for our engine technology, in the only open-wheel racing series in America, a high-tech, growing series that Roger Penske and his team are absolutely taking to the next level.” The newly designed powertrain system also will provide a departure from the traditional, manual handheld starters and will let drivers restart the car quickly should it stall on the track. This will benefit the AMR INDYCAR Safety Team as it reduces exposure time on track and adds to the fan experience by potentially reducing the number of caution flags on track, leading to better flow and time of races. “Fast, loud, and authentic,” Frye said, “along with a history of innovation – that’s our racing roots and will continue to be the sport’s legacy. This announcement keeps that in mind while celebrating a stable and bright future.” The commitment and overall stability of the series will continue to allow INDYCAR future opportunities for an additional OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) to join its mainstay engine partners.

Thoughts on McLaren

Silly Season was straightforward this year. Alexander Rossi stays with Andretti. Done. Wrap it up. Look to next year. Today, with McLaren’s announcement that they are joining Arrow Schmidt Peterson for 2020, the dam has burst. There are ripples throughout the paddock. Here are some of my thoughts about this development.

McLaren has a lot to prove after their debacle in May. Will partnering with Schmidt Peterson help them?

I’m disappointed that McLaren does not add to the car count. I’ve said before they are looking to come in the easy way, becoming part of an existing team instead of building their own team with  a technical alliance with an established team.

It’s a shame the way Honda’s hand was forced to make this deal happen. I can’t think of a Chevy team that would be a good match for McLaren. I’m not sure they even considered one.

My first concern was for James Hincliffe and Robert Wickens.  In Marshall Pruett’s story, he said that the commitment to Wickens will be honored. Later this morning, Hinchcliffe issued the following statement:

hinch statement

I hope he also  has a contract extension. Hinchcliffe’s current contract expires after the 2020 season. He also is losing his Honda commercial deal. I hope that he receives compensation for that.

Marcus Ericsson was likely going somewhere else anyway. he may be in a carlin car next year. Which brings up the question- who will drive the second car for the new team? Fernando Alonso said he is not interested in a full time Indycar ride.

Colton Herta may be available, but I think he will become the fifth driver at Andretti Autosport.  If he is, is Conor Daly once again out of a potential full time ride? It’s those paddock ripples splashing up.

With whom  does Meyer Shank now partner with as they prepare for a full schedule in 2020? The team is committed to Honda. An alliance with Andretti or Coyne seems most probable. I don’t think Ganassi is interested in being anyone’s partner.

The new team name is Arrow McLaren Racing SP. It bothers that mcLaren comes before Schmidt and Peterson and that the two founders names are reduced to initials. Since mcLaren is buying the team or acquiring the shares of either owner, I guess it’s a name recognition thing.

The biggest positive in today’s events is that Indycar now has a worldwide name in its paddock. it should help with recognition in Europe and may cause a bit of a bump in the United States.

I will keep updating as i learn more.  Everything I just wrote could be incorrect by now.


Quick Thoughts- Hybrid Power to Indycar in 2022

First, it’s about time! I have wondered why Indycar had not done this sooner.

I like that the cars  will have 900 horsepower and that the noise of the cars won’t be affected.

Onboard starters- about time again. This should reduce yellow flags during races even more. It will definitely make for fewer red flags during practice sessions.

This opens the door for a third OEM. Perhaps Porsche will reconsider joining? I have heard and thought that lack of a hybrid component was the hangup in getting a new engine manufacturer.

I don’t mind waiting another year for new features.  I’m interested to see how the new larger  engine will alter the shape of the bodywork on the car.

I’m not sure this will increase the size of the field, but it could.

PLEASE do not call this a Power Unit. It’s still an engine.

I will be back later today with more details. I’m heading to IMS for an adventure I will talk about tomorrow.



The Indianapolis 500 Pace Car

Today at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway the pace car for the 103rd running ofm the Indianapolis 500 made its debut.  The Corvette Grand Sport will lead the field to the green flag on May 26th.

I really like the color of this car. I thought they might go with a Camaro resembling the pace car from 1969 to continue the Mario Andretti tribute. This Corvette is a nice alternative.