Frost Sweeps Lights Test

Danial Frost led both test sessions at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway today in the Chris Griffis Memorial Test.

The release from IMS:

INDIANAPOLIS (Friday, Oct. 21, 2022) – Danial Frost staked his claim as a driver to watch for the 2023 Indy Lights championship by leading the Chris Griffis Memorial Test on Friday, Oct. 21 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Indy Lights veteran Frost, from Singapore, led the 16 drivers participating in the annual test with a top lap of 1 minute, 16.2526 seconds in the No. 68 HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing entry. That time came during the morning session on the 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course, and he also led the afternoon session at 1:16.2794.
SEE: Combined Results
“Today went pretty well,” Frost said. “I’m quite happy with how the progress has gone. We’re looking more to getting the balance right, and being at the top is a nice refresh and helps us make sure we’re making good progress. The team has done an excellent job even though we have nine cars now. We’re still fast.”
Less than one-half second separated the top nine drivers overall in the test, named in memory of Chris Griffis, the team manager of Schmidt Peterson Motorsports who passed away suddenly in September 2011. Griffis led the team to five Indy Lights championships from 2003-2011.
2022 Rookie of the Year Hunter McElrea was second at 1:16.3769 in the No. 27 Andretti Autosport car. Ernie Francis Jr., who has joined the powerful HMD Motorsports team for his second season in 2023, ended up an impressive third at 1:16.4489 in the No. 99 HMD Motorsports with Force Indy car. Francis finished 10th in the series standings as a rookie in 2022.
“Coming into today, expectations are high, being with HMD, a championship-winning team last year,” Francis said. “We know we have the potential to be fast, and today was pretty good. We ended up P3. Really happy with that. That’s the highest we’ve been in the order all season. I think it should be a really competitive (2023) season. The times look really close, and I think we have a top-five car. It will make for a good year.”
Rookie Nolan Siegel was fourth at 1:16.4852 in the No. 39 HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne entry, and Kyffin Simpson ensured HMD drivers took four of the top five spots by ending up fifth at 1:16.4858 in the team’s No. 21 car.
There was only one incident in six hours of testing. Three-time W Series champion Jamie Chadwick touched the grass at the entry of Turn 14 and made contact with the SAFER Barrier in the No. 28 Andretti Autosport car. She was unhurt and continued in the afternoon session.
The 16 drivers combined to turn 945 laps during the test.

Palou F1 Debut

Alex Palou finished Practice 1 just 0.3 seconds behind teammate Lando No0rris on the same tire compound. Palou did not run the softer tire. He did a creditable job.

Frost Leads Indy Lights Morning Session at IMS

Danial Frost turned the fastest lap in the morning test session at IMS, as the Indy Lights had its first 2023 preparation test 16 cars are participating in the Chris Griffiths memorial test today. The test is closed to the public. The driver from Singapore had a quick lap of 1:16.2526 in the HMD Motorsports entry.

This morning’s round ended when Jamie Chadwick crashed. The car suffered left rear damage. Chadwick was not injured.


Frost currently leads the afternoon round, followed by Ernie Francis, Jr.

Reminder: Alex Palou makes his F1 test debut this afternoon, driving one of the McLaren cars at COTA in the first USGP practice. The practice begins at 2:55 PM Eastern on ESPN 2.

Brabham, Lazier Receive Qualifying Penalties

Indy Lights drivers Mattthew Brabham and Flinn Lazier have been penalized during Indy Lights race 1 qualifying this morning.

Indy Lights issued the following announcement about Brabham<

Flinn Lazier ran an extra lap after the checkered flag and will have to sit for the first three minutes of session 2.

Hunter McElrea was just penalized in session 2 for interference and will lose his two best laps for race 2 qualifying.

Flinn Lazier to Make Indy Lights Debut in September

Indy Lights announced that the son of 1996 Indianapolis 500 winner Buddy Lazier will drive for Abel Motorsports in the final three races of the year at Portland and Weather Tech Raceway Laguna Seca.

The news release from Indy Lights:

Third-generation race driver Flinn Lazier will make his Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires debut with Abel Motorsports on Sept. 4 at Portland International Raceway.

Lazier also will drive the No. 15 Abel entry in the season-ending doubleheader Sept. 10-11 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. Lazier, 23, is the son of 1996 Indianapolis 500 winner and 2000 INDYCAR SERIES champion Buddy Lazier and the grandson of 1981 CART Rookie of the Year and Indianapolis 500 veteran Bob Lazier.

“I’m really excited to get this opportunity to make my Indy Lights debut with Abel Motorsports,” Lazier said. “I’ve been working for this for a long time, and I am incredibly grateful to Abel Motorsports for giving me the opportunity to get my feet wet in the series. I can’t wait to get to Portland and begin working with the team and seeing what we can accomplish together.”

Colorado native Lazier is no stranger to open-wheel racing. He has won two races this season in the Formula Atlantic series and was the 2019 Formula Atlantic champion.

Lazier also made four starts in the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires in 2021 and also has extensive experience in Sports Car Club of America racing.

Indy Lights Switches to Firestone

This is big. Firestone Tires will be the new tire supplier for Indy Lights beginning in 2023. Cooper Tires had been the official tire of the Road to Indy for many years. Last year Indycar purchased the Indy Lights Series. From that perspective, the move makes sense. Running on the same tire as Indycar should also help drivers when they move to Indycar.

The official release from Indycar:

Firestone Announces Plan to Return
as Exclusive Tire Supplier for Indy Lights
 INDIANAPOLIS (Wednesday, June 22, 2022) – As part of the grand opening of Firestone’s Advanced Tire Production Center (ATPC) in Akron, Ohio, INDYCAR and Firestone officials announced plans for Firestone to become the sole tire supplier for Indy Lights beginning in 2023.The announcement highlights Firestone’s plans to expand its partnership with INDYCAR as the company is also the exclusive tire supplier for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, North America’s premier open-wheel series.
“Firestone continues to be a phenomenal partner,” said INDYCAR President Jay Frye. “We are proud to see that our relationship is expanding into supplying tires for both of our series. Their attention to detail, safety and performance is unmatched. Supplying their world-class product to the NTT INDYCAR SERIES and Indy Lights reflects Firestone’s commitment to INDYCAR’s present and future.”
The move will mark a return for Firestone to INDYCAR’s developmental series as the Bridgestone brands Firestone and Dayton supplied tires for Indy Lights from 1991 to 2013.
“We look forward to expanding our partnership with INDYCAR to supply tires for Indy Lights starting in 2023,” said Lisa Boggs, director of motorsports, Bridgestone Americas. “We know the importance this series has for technology advancement and driver development and are proud to be a part of the journey.”
In the fall of 2021, INDYCAR assumed total control of Indy Lights operations. The 2022 season began a more inclusive atmosphere with the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, with integration in marketing, digital assets and race officiating.“
We want to thank Cooper Tires, who has been a partner with Indy Lights since 2014,” said Indy Lights Director Levi Jones. “Their assistance while INDYCAR assumed operational control was crucial to our success. With Firestone, we cannot wait to begin this new era, which will align the entire INDYCAR paddock and help our rising stars reach their goal of competing in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES.”
The 2022 Indy Lights championship continues Sunday, July 3 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Coverage begins at 10:35 a.m. (ET) on Peacock Premium. Coverage is also available from the INDYCAR Radio Network with audio available via the INDYCAR App powered by NTT DATA.

Force Indy Moves to Indy Lights with Ernie Francis, Jr.

From Indycar:

African American-Led Force Indy Elevates
to Indy Lights with Driver Francis
Rising Star Adds to Diverse Legacy of Growing Team
INDIANAPOLIS (Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022) – Force Indy has announced its entry for the 2022 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires championship with Ernie Francis Jr. driving the team’s No. 99 car.Haitian American Francis heads to Force Indy after three wins in his lone season in the Formula Regional Americas Championship and a second-place finish in the inaugural season of the Superstar Racing Experience (SRX), with a win at Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park.Florida native Francis, 24, is also a seven-time class champion in the Trans Am Series (2014-2020). His 47 career victories are the most of any driver in Trans Am history. His 24 wins in the premier TA category trail only Paul Gentilozzi (31), Mark Donohue (29) and Tommy Kendall (28)
.“This is an incredible opportunity,” Francis said. “After getting a taste last year and beginning to learn what open-wheel racing is all about, I found myself wanting more. Open-wheel cars are incredible to drive. To know that I’ll continue my education with Force Indy and only one step away from the NTT INDYCAR SERIES makes this unbelievably special. I cannot wait to get started.”
In December 2020, African American business leader and former racing team manager Rod Reid announced the formation of Force Indy with the focus on hiring men and women of color, including mechanics, engineers, staffers and drivers. During its inaugural season in the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship, the team won in thrilling fashion at New Jersey Motorsports Park with driver Myles Rowe.
“Being able to finish our first season with a win showed what this team is capable of doing,” Reid said. “We want to thank Myles, who will always be a member of the Force Indy race team, and will continue to offer assistance and mentorship as he pursues another season in USF2000.”
“I could not be more thrilled to promote our group to the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires championship with Ernie Francis Jr. His work ethic and history of success speak for itself.”
Team Principal Reid’s years of karting and auto racing experience have proven invaluable. His NXG Youth Motorsports Inc., has introduced more than 2,300 students from under-represented communities, ages 11 to 15, to the educational benefits of the sport. Team Penske will continue to offer mentorship for Force Indy, as the initiative also falls under Penske Entertainment Corp.’s “Race for Equality & Change” announced in July 2020.
The goals include recruiting and developing a diverse workforce throughout all levels of INDYCAR and Indianapolis Motor Speedway, ultimately creating a community that fundamentally transforms the sport.
“I was pleased to learn that Ernie would be driving for Force Indy in 2022,” Roger Penske said. “As someone who has a history in Trans Am, I know the type of skillset that comes from that series. Ernie will be a wonderful addition to Indy Lights. It was inspiring to see the growth of Force Indy during their first season, and we will continue to support their progress and mission as the team continues on a path to compete in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES.”
Force Indy will make its Indy Lights series debut Feb. 25-27 on the Streets of St. Petersburg, Florida. The team will continue to use No. 99 on the car in honor of the late Dewey “Rajo Jack” Gatson, who drove a roadster with that number toward the end of his career in 1951. Gatson, one of the winningest African American drivers and mechanics in racing history, never received an opportunity to race in the Indianapolis 500.
“We remain very fortunate to have Team Penske offer its guidance and mentorship,” Reid said. “I have been in and around the sport for 40 years. Force Indy remains a labor of love, and our goals are unchanged: focusing on diversity with an eye toward competing in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES and, in honor of Rajo Jack, the Indianapolis 500.”
For additional information, please visit the team’s website:

I will have more on this story later today.

Indycar Reveals Indy Lights Schedule: 14 Races, 2 Ovals

From Indycar:

New Era for Series Includes Return to Iowa Speedway, Debut at Nashville

INDIANAPOLIS (Tuesday, Jan. 11, 2022) – INDYCAR is launching a new era of operational control of Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires with the announcement of a 14-race schedule for 2022.

The schedule features events in 11 key markets and three doubleheader weekends, including a return to Iowa Speedway and the series’ debut on the Streets of Nashville. In November 2021, INDYCAR added the role of promoter to its position of sanctioning body of Indy Lights.

All 14 races, qualifying sessions and practices will happen within 2022 NTT INDYCAR SERIES weekends, providing an inclusive atmosphere for the developmental series that serves as the final step toward competing in North America’s premier open-wheel series. Where available, Indy Lights will benefit from a more integrated paddock area as its team garages will be inside the NTT INDYCAR SERIES paddock footprint. Additional integration will come in marketing, digital assets and race officiating.

“To have all 14 races included with the NTT INDYCAR SERIES schedule and its world-class venues is a tremendous step forward,” said Levi Jones, director of Indy Lights. “In addition to competing for the 2022 championship, Indy Lights drivers, crew members and teams will be able to see up close how event weekends run and operate in INDYCAR.

“Racing is the part they’ve known their whole life. Our goal is to also allow them the opportunity to see what it takes to become a true professional. The chance to connect and closely interact with the NTT INDYCAR SERIES paddock is a pathway to realize that goal.”

The 2022 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season begins Sunday, Feb. 27 on the Streets of St. Petersburg. It is the 17th year that Indy Lights has competed on the temporary street circuit. The championship continues Sunday, May 1 at picturesque Barber Motorsports Park before the first doubleheader of the season on the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course Friday, May 13 and Saturday, May 14.

The second doubleheader of 2022 is scheduled for Saturday, June 4 and Sunday, June 5 at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park in Detroit before the classic American road courses of Road America on Sunday, June 12 and Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Sunday, July 3.

The first oval of the season comes Saturday, July 23 at Iowa Speedway. It marks the first appearance by Indy Lights on the .875-mile, D-shaped layout since 2018. It is followed by the series debut on the fan-favorite Streets of Nashville on Sunday, Aug. 7 and another oval at World Wide Technology Raceway on Saturday, Aug. 20.

A series of test days also will be included in the overall calendar for the 2022 season, at the IMS road course (Tuesday, April 5), World Wide Technology Raceway (Wednesday, June 15) and Iowa Speedway (Wednesday, June 22).

“The key is we are training successful athletes today to become superstars tomorrow,” Jones said. “Tests and races at all three venues, combined with the remaining schedule, will help provide each of our drivers the experience they need to be ready for the final step of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES.”

The 2022 championship finishes with a flurry of three races in eight days. The final stretch starts Sunday, Sept. 4 with an event at Portland International Raceway for the 18th season. The series champion will be crowned at the final doubleheader of the season, Saturday, Sept. 10 and Sunday, Sept. 11 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.

In the United States, all races will be broadcast live on Peacock Premium, NBCUniversal’s expanding streaming service, with additional coverage during race weekends provided by the INDYCAR Radio Network.

“Last season, over 20 drivers in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES competed in Indy Lights at some point in their career,” Jones said. “It is a proven pipeline to the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, and we believe the connection will strengthen as the sanctioning body assumes operational control. There is little question the 2022 championship trophy will be one the champion will keep on their shelf forever and could be a sign of bigger success to come afterward.”

Start times for 2022 events will be announced at a later date.

About Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires: Celebrating 35 years, Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires develops drivers and teams to compete in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES and the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge. Past champions include INDYCAR SERIES champions Paul Tracy, Cristiano da Matta, Tony Kanaan, Scott Dixon and Josef Newgarden. In 2021, 20 drivers in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES were Indy Lights graduates, including rising stars and race winners Colton Herta, Pato O’Ward and Rinus VeeKay. The 2022 season consists of 14 races in the United States. The NTT INDYCAR SERIES, Indy Lights, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IMS Productions are owned by Penske Corporation, a global transportation, automotive and motorsports leader. For more information on Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, please visit For more information on INDYCAR and the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, please visit

About Cooper Tire: Cooper Tire, a subsidiary of The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company (Nasdaq: GT), specializes in the design, manufacture, marketing and sale of passenger car, light truck, medium truck, motorcycle and racing tires. Cooper is headquartered in Findlay, Ohio, with manufacturing, sales, distribution, technical and design operations located in more than one dozen countries around the world. For more information on Cooper, visit or

About Goodyear: Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tire companies. It employs about 72,000 people and manufactures its products in 55 facilities in 23 countries around the world. Its two Innovation Centers in Akron, Ohio, and Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg, strive to develop state-of-the-art products and services that set the technology and performance standard for the industry. For more information about Goodyear and its products, go to

Matthew Brabham Returns to Indy Lights with Andretti

Photo from Andretti Autosport

Matthew Brabham will return to Indy Lights, driving the number 83 car for Andretti Autosport. Brabham has spent the last few years driving in Stadium Super Trucks. Andretti as usual has a solid stable of drivers in Indy Lights, including veteran Sting Ray Robb.

The announcement from Andretti Autosport:


Indy Lights veteran Matthew Brabham will return to the Road to Indy ladder system in 2022 with Andretti Autosport as he steps into the No. 83 Indy Lights machine. Brabham and Andretti Autosport have a storied history together competing in both the Indy Pro 2000 Presented by Cooper Tires and Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires championships. The second-generation driver was crowned the 2013 Indy Pro 2000 Champion (formerly Pro Mazda). Brabham returns to the American open-wheel series with unfinished business as he finished in the top four of the Indy Lights championship in 2014.

“We’re really excited to have Matty back in our Indy Lights lineup,” said Michael Andretti, Chairman and CEO, Andretti Autosport. “He’s always shown natural talent behind the wheel and was a great Road to Indy contender for us in the past. I’m really looking forward to seeing what our Indy Lights lineup accomplishes this year as all of their talents continue to grow.”

Brabham first entered the Road to Indy ladder with the USF2000 Championship in 2012, where he captured the 2012 championship with four wins and 11 podium finishes. The 2012 USF2000 scholarship propelled the Australian-American to the Indy Pro 2000 field where 13 victories, 10 pole positions and 15 podiums led to the 2013 title and the chance to compete in Indy Lights for the 2014 season. Brabham went on to collect one victory, one pole position and 10 top-five finishes in 17 Indy Lights race starts.

“I’m extremely grateful to Michael, JF and everyone who is a part of Andretti Autosport,” said Brabham. “They have given me many great opportunities over the years, including this one. We have accomplished amazing results together. We have won a total of 14 races and a championship in the past. I’m absolutely ecstatic to be back racing full time in a proper open-wheel car again with a top team. I feel it’s where I’ve always belonged. I’m willing to give everything I have at this and more to follow my dream of getting back into the INDYCAR SERIES.”

Brabham completes Andretti Autosport’s lineup piloting the No. 83 Dallara for the 2022 Indy Lights season alongside teammates Sting Ray Robb [No. 2 Dallara], Hunter McElrea [No. 27 Dallara] and Christian Rasmussen [No. 28 Dallara].

Road to Indy Championship Weekend ; Lights, Pro Titles Up for Grabs

Kyle Kirkwood takes a 15 point lead into the final weekend for Indy Lights

The Road to Indy goes to Mid Ohio this weekend for double headers in each series- USF 2000, Indy Pro 2000, and Indy Lights. While the USF 2000 series looks to be firmly in Kiko Porto’s grasp, there are close battles for the top spots and the scholarships that come with them in both Indy Pro and Indy Lights. Indy Lights carries the added importance of a bit of a budget to take to an Indycar team.

In Indy Pro 2000, Christian Rasmussen leads Braden Eves by 18 points. Kyle Kirkwood holds a 15 point advantage over David Malukas in Indy Lights. Both drivers are expected to be in Indycar next season.

The track is open to spectators for a $20 admission for the weekend. Tickets are only available at the gate. The paddock is open to spectators.

Skip Barber Racing School is also racing at Mid Ohio Saturday and Sunday.

The schedule:


9:00 AM – 5:00 PM TECH OPEN – USF2000 & INDY PRO 2000 (CLOSED FROM 12:00 PM -1:00 PM)
10:00 AM – 10:20 AM SBRS TEST SESSION 2
11:00 AM – 11:20 AM SBRS TEST SESSION 3
12:00 PM – 12:20 PM SBRS TEST SESSION 4
2:20 PM – 2:45 PM SBRS PRACTICE 1
4:00 PM – 4:30 PM INDY PRO 2000 PRACTICE 1

7:30 AM – 5:00 PM TECH OPEN – USF2000 & INDY PRO 2000 (CLOSED FROM 12:30 PM -1:30 PM)
8:00 AM – 3:00 PM TECH OPEN – INDY LIGHTS (CLOSED FROM 11:30 AM -12:30 PM)
8:00 AM – 8:25 AM SBRS PRACTICE 2
8:40 AM – 9:10 AM USF2000 PRACTICE 1
11:05 AM – 11:30 AM SBRS QUALIFYING 1
11:45 AM – 12:15 PM USF2000 QUALIFYING 1 (20 MIN GREEN IN 30 MIN WINDOW)
1:00 PM – 1:50 PM INDY LIGHTS RACE 1
2:05 PM – 2:55 PM INDY PRO 2000 RACE 1
3:10 PM – 3:35 PM SBRS RACE 1
3:50 PM – 4:30 PM USF2000 RACE 1

6:30 AM – 3:00 PM TECH OPEN – USF2000 & INDY PRO 2000 (CLOSED FROM 12:00 PM -1:00 PM)
10:15 AM – 10:40 AM SBRS QUALIFYING 2
11:00 AM – 11:40 AM USF2000 RACE 2
12:00 PM – 12:50 PM INDY LIGHTS RACE 2
1:10 PM – 2:00 PM INDY PRO 2000 RACE 2
2:15 PM – 2:40 PM SBRS RACE 2

Indy Lights Standings:

1Kyle Kirkwood – R488
2David Malukas473
3Linus Lundqvist – R403
4Benjamin Pedersen – R322
5Danial Frost – R304
6Devlin DeFrancesco – R294
7Robert Megennis285
8Toby Sowery

Indy Pro 2000 Standings:

1Christian Rasmussen – R392
2Braden Eves374
3Hunter McElrea347
4Reece Gold – R337
5Artem Petrov329
6Jacob Abel259
7Kyffin Simpson – R231
8Manuel Sulaiman214

USF2000 Standings:

1Kiko Porto368
2Michael d’Orlando319
3Yuven Sundaramoorthy295
4Josh Pierson266
5Christian Brooks257
6Josh Green229
7Spike Kohlbecker – R210
8Jace Denmark – R203

Your favorite blogger will be heading to Mid Ohio early Saturday morning. I will be going, too.

Andersen Adds USF Juniors

Dan Andersen has added another entry level series, USF Juniors, to the Road to Indy. Andersen believes USF 2000 is attracting drivers above the true entry level and wants to provide a lower starting point for young drivers. The series will be sanctioned by USAC and will have 16-18 races, all on road courses.

Indy Lights Moves to Penske Entertainment

Sunday will be the last Indy Lights race under the auspices of Andersen’s road to Indy. Starting in2022, Indy Lights will become part of Indycar. The move is to create a greater connection between Indycar teams and the step just below it. More Indycar teams are expected to field teams in the series, which has struggled in recent years to have respectable car count.

Dan Andersen saved Indy Lights a couple of years by putting a lot of his own money into the series. The car counts have improved. I wish to thank Andersen for his hard work on the Road to Indy and for keeping Indy Lights running.