Race Day 1 at Road America

Good morning from the remote Road America media center, located five miles from the track in Plymouth. Talk about distancing.

The NTT Indycar Series begins a four races in nine days stretch toiday with the first of two races at Road America. The REV Group Grand Prix begins at 5:15 Eastern time. NBCSN begins their broadcast at 5 pm Eastern.

Today’s schedule: (All Times Eastern)

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Indycar will use the double header qualifying format that is used at Detroit. Practice divides the field into two groups. Each group gets 12 minutes on track. The fastest driver in each group gets a point. The faster of the group leaders is on the pole. On Sunday the order of the groups is reversed.

The 55 laps will require three pit stops. This race will be difficult to run with just two. There have not been any caution laps the last two years.

Spotter’s Guides for today and tomorrow:

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Back later with practice results.

The Day at Road America- New Things, Reunions, A Different Atmosphere

First, it was great to back at a race track. Watching cars speed by was good therapy. What I found even better was getting to see friends I would have seen months ago under normal circumstances. The world was right again for a day. In addition to the changes Road America has made for the fans’ health, there are also physical improvements to the facility.

The main photo is the new viewing terrace on the inside of Canada Corner. This four tier area should relieve some of the congestion on the trail. I tried it for a bit. It presents a nice view of a great corner.

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The biggest structural improvement is to the concession stand near the paddock. The area had been a crowded jumble of people, picnic tables, and golf cart parking confusion. Now, the entrance is elevated, the building remodeled, and carts can’t park right up to the dining area.

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The paddock had a different feel to it. It sat empty until about 4 pm when the transporters began arriving. Seeing the trucks pull in and lineup was exciting. It meant there will be racing tomorrow. The Honda teams are toward turn 14 and the Chevy teams are toward turn 1. Until the transporters arrived, it was sad seeing an empty expanse of concrete that normally is buzzing with activity.

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The crowd was small enough that fans could keep distance from each other. I expect a few more people the next two days. It was a smaller crowd than most days at Road America. Masks seemed to more prevalent this afternoon. I talked to some people who arrived later in the day. They did receive a mask and hand sanitizer. I think I enter a different gate tomorrow.

New Spotter Guides

Indycar has released a spotter’s guide for each race this weekend. The only car changing liveries is the 15 of Graham Rahal.  I will have those posted no later than tomorrow morning.

 

 

Road America First IndyCar Track to Welcome Fans

Good morning from Elkhart Lake.  Due to social distancing my seat in the media center  is five miles from the  track.  I can barely see the cars.

Today’s  Schedule: All times Central

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It will be a pleasant day at the track with a high of 81 predicted for mid afternoon. Rain chances drop to 20% at 8 am then are 15% or less the rest of the day. Last night we had some storms. Milwaukee was under a tornado warning early in the evening. The weekend still looks good.

I’m looking forward to seeing cars on track again.  I will also be observing track practices to see how Road America’s plans have worked out in real time. Look for my thoughts this evening.

Today is the day for the Road to Indy to have the track all to themselves. It’s nice when they get a full day on an Indycar weekend.

I will post short bulletins but look for updates on The Pit Window on Facebook and @PitWindowToo on Twitter.

 

 

 

 

 

REV Group Grand Prix presented by AMR Doubleheader Fast Facts

Race weekend: Saturday, July 11 – Sunday, July 12

Track: Road America, a 4.014-mile, 14-turn permanent road course (clockwise), in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin

Race distance: 55 laps / 220.77 miles (each race)

Media links: Race 1 Entry List | Race 2 Entry List | Trackside Book

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

Firestone tire allotment: Nine sets primary, five sets alternate for use during the race weekend. Teams must use one set of primary and one set of alternate tires for at least two laps in the race.

Twitter: @RoadAmerica @IndyCar, #REVGROUPGP, #IndyCar

Event website: www.roadamerica.com

INDYCAR website: www.IndyCar.com

2019 race winner: Alexander Rossi (No. 27 NAPA AUTO PARTS Honda)

2019 pole winner Colton Herta (No. 88 Capstone Turbine Honda), 1 minute, 42.9920 seconds, 140.306 mph

Qualifying record: Dario Franchitti, 1:39.866, 145.924 mph, Aug. 19, 2000

NBC/NBCSN telecasts: Race 1 Qualifying: 2:15 p.m. ET Saturday, NBCSN (live); Race 1: 5 p.m. ET Saturday, NBCSN (live). Race 2: Noon ET Sunday, NBC (live). Leigh Diffey is the lead announcer for NBC broadcasts alongside analysts Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy.

NBC Sports Gold livestreaming: All NTT INDYCAR SERIES practice sessions and qualifying will stream live on INDYCAR Pass on NBC Sports Gold, NBC Sports’ direct-to-consumer livestreaming product.

INDYCAR Radio Network broadcasts: Mark Jaynes is the chief announcer alongside analyst Davey Hamilton with Jake Query, Michael Young and Nick Yeoman in the turns. All NTT INDYCAR SERIES races are broadcast live on the INDYCAR Radio Network, Sirius 211, XM 205, IndyCar.com and on the INDYCAR MOBILE APP powered by NTT DATA. Live coverage of NTT INDYCAR SERIES qualifying is available on Sirius 211, XM 205, IndyCar.com, and the INDYCAR MOBILE APP.

At-track schedule (all times Eastern Time):
Saturday, July 11
11 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. – NTT INDYCAR SERIES practice, NBC Sports Gold
2:15 p.m. – Qualifying for the NTT P1 Award (two groups), NBCSN (Live)
5 p.m. – NBCSN on air
5:08 p.m. – “Drivers, start your engines”
5:15 p.m. – REV Group Grand Prix presented by AMR Race 1 (55 laps/220.77 miles), NBCSN (Live)

Sunday, July 12
9-9:30 a.m. – Qualifying for the NTT P1 Award (two groups), NBC Sports Gold
Noon – NBC on air
12:35 p.m. – “Drivers, start your engines”
12:42 p.m. – REV Group Grand Prix presented by AMR Race 2 (55 laps/220.77 miles), NBC (Live)

Road America Weekend Schedule

The schedule with broadcast times. Reminder- all times are Eastern. If you are going to the race, times are an hour earlier. Saturday’s race is on NBCSN, the first race of the year on that channel. Sunday’s race is on NBC.

Qualifying will follow the format used for the Detroit races. Two groups get 30 minutes each. The fastest driver in each group gets a point and is guaranteed a front row start. the faster of the two is on the pole. the other cars line up behind the leader of their group.

Thursday is reserved solely for the Road to Indy. USF 2000 and IndyPro 2000 each have practice, qualifying, and two races.

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Road America Official Announcement on Fan Attendance

From Indycar:

If you are planning to attend Road America, there is some important information in this announcement.

INDYCAR to Welcome Fans
for July 9-12 Race Weekend at Road America

INDIANAPOLIS (June 25, 2020) – The NTT INDYCAR SERIES will welcome fans back to the track for the first time in 2020 on July 9-12 at Road America for the REV Group Grand Prix presented by American Medical Response doubleheader race weekend.

Under the guidance of public health officials, medical experts and local, state and federal authorities, INDYCAR and Road America will observe safe social distancing practices and provide enhanced hygiene and safety precautions for all fans attending the event.

All guests will be screened in their vehicles with contactless temperature checks before entering the parking areas, and only essential racing personnel will have access to the INDYCAR paddock. A PPE kit that includes a face mask as well as hand sanitizer will be provided to each guest upon arrival to the track.

Fans are encouraged to practice safe social distancing and wear a cloth face-covering where social distancing is difficult to maintain. Enhanced cleaning and sanitizing procedures will also be implemented throughout the facility during the weekend. Guests are encouraged to print their tickets at home to have a contactless experience at the gates and easier entry. Additional protocols and guidelines for spectators can be found at www.roadamerica.com/safety.

The race weekend will feature two full points races for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES on back-to-back days – July 11 and 12 – as part of the REV Group Grand Prix presented by AMR. The weekend schedule will also be bolstered by two junior development series of the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires, the Indy Pro 2000, and USF2000, of which many drivers of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES are graduates.

Fans have three quick, convenient methods to buy tickets:

Online: Visit www.roadamerica.com Tickets are available 24 hours a day, seven days per week. Print your tickets to save time and enjoy a contactless experience at the gates.

Phone: Call 800-365-RACE or 920-892-4576 between 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. (CT) Monday through Friday.

In-Person: Visit the Road America Ticket Office at the Road America Administration Building off of State Highway 67 (Gate 6) between 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. (CT) Monday through Friday.

Gates open at 7 a.m. and races run rain or shine. For more information, call 800-365-RACE (7223) or visit www.roadamerica.com

Anyone 16 years old and under is always FREE with a paying adult at the gate.

All active-duty first responders will receive FREE entry to the REV Group Grand Prix presented by American Medical Response weekend. First responders, including law enforcement, fire, paramedics, and emergency medical technicians, will be admitted free of charge by showing valid identification indicating active service in the form of a department-issued ID, badge, copies of certifications or an active roster copy from their department on department letterhead. FREE admission must be redeemed at the gate and is only valid during the event weekend.

About INDYCAR:
INDYCAR is the Indianapolis-based governing body for North America’s premier open-wheel auto racing series known as the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. The series features an international field of the world’s most versatile drivers – including five-time series champion Scott Dixon, reigning series champion Josef Newgarden and defending Indianapolis 500 winner Simon Pagenaud – who compete on superspeedways, short ovals, street circuits and permanent road courses. The season, which runs from June to October, currently consists of 14 races in the United States and is highlighted by the historic Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge, which is annually run in May, but rescheduled for August at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The NTT INDYCAR SERIES, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IMS Productions are owned by Penske Corporation, a global transportation, automotive and motorsports leader. For more information on INDYCAR and the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, please visit www.indycar.com.