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Old 8 Mar 2017, 20:18 (Ref:3717339)   #1
bjohnsonsmith
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2017 IndyCar season, Round 1: Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, March 10-12

Round 1: Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, March 10-12

The waiting and the long off season are almost over as this Sunday's 2017 season opener at St. Pete's is nearly upon us.

This will be the 14th running of the race on the current track and the 13th as an IndyCar event. The first race held at St. Petersburg was in 1985 as part of a double headliner, featuring the SCCA Can-Am and Trans-Am Series, with the Can-Am race won by Lou Sell and the Trans-Am race by Willy T. Ribbs. However, in 1990 the event was cancelled due to a combination of local residents and businesses complaining about noise and the loss of the main sponsor. It was revived briefly from 1996-1997 on a new course, around Tropicana Field. After a second hiatus, the event returned in 2003 but as a Champ Car race, using a heavily modified layout of the Bayfront course and was won by Paul Tracy, driving for Forsythe Racing, in a Lola B03/00 Ford-Cosworth. In 2004, the event was cancelled due to a dispute between the promoters but returned in 2005, this time as part of the IRL IndyCar Series, making this the first non-oval event for the Indy Racing League. It was won by the late Dan Wheldon, driving for Andretti Green Racing, in a Dallara IR-05 Honda Indy V8

Two years ago saw the introduction of aero-kits from the two engine manufacturers, Chevrolet and Honda. Unfortunately, the aero-kits proved to be rather fragile, with pieces of coming off, producing a rash of FCYs and unfortunately injuring a spectator. At last year's race both manufacturers introduced updates to their road-street/short oval aero-kits, without the issues that plagued the previous year. However, this year there are no updates as a freeze has been imposed on aero-kit development.

Last year saw Will Power qualify on pole for the second year in a row and Juan Pablo Montoya win, also for the second year in a row. However, Will Power was diagnosed with concussion shortly after qualifying finished and was forced to miss the race. Oriol Servià took his place and Simon Pagenaud inherited pole. After the race, Power was re-evaluated and instead of concussion he was diagnosed as suffering from a lingering ear infection.

Some trivia:
The driver with most wins: 3, Hélio Castroneves, 2006, 2007, 2012.
The team with most wins: 9, Team Penske, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2015, 2016.

Track layout:
The Bayfront course has undergone a number of significant changes over the years, from the original 1985 layout to the modified version, which was used from 1986-1990 to eventually the current layout as used from 2003.

Current Bayfront layout:
Length: 1.806 Miles (2.903 Km)
Turns: 14


1986-1990 Bayfront layout:
2.000 miles (3.219 km)
Turns: 10


Original Bayfront layout:
2.000 miles (3.219 km)
Turns: 9


Lap record: Will Power, March 12, 2016. 1:00.245, 107.561 Mph (173.102 Km/h). Team Penske, Dallara DW12-Chevrolet IndyCar V6. Verizon IndyCar Series.

Last year's race:
Pole:
Will Power. 1:00.245, 107.561 mph (173.102 Km/h)

Winner:
Juan Pablo Montoya, Team Penske, Dallara DW12-Chevrolet IndyCar V6
Laps 110
Distance 198 Miles (318.65 Km)
Race Time 2:13:28
Average Speed 89.006 Mph (143.24 Km/h)
Caution periods: 2, laps 46 to 55, laps 57 to 62.
Caution laps: 16

This year's race broadcast:
ABC 12:30pm ET.

Last edited by bjohnsonsmith; 8 Mar 2017 at 20:37.
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Old 9 Mar 2017, 04:04 (Ref:3717406)   #2
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D.R.T. should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridD.R.T. should be qualifying in the top 5 on the grid
After a long off season this opener cant come soon enough!

Pre season form is almost impossible to read but Penske will be strong but the performance of the Ganassi Honda's will be interesting to follow.

Hoping for a strong opening by JR Hildenbrand
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Old 10 Mar 2017, 22:15 (Ref:3717898)   #3
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Didn't see the P1 times, but Dixon, Power and Kanaan the fastest in P2. Let me find my shocked face:
P2 times
http://www.indycar.com/stats/verizon...urg/practice-2

Check that. P1 times here:
http://www.indycar.com/stats/verizon...urg/practice-1

P3 tomorrow morning.

Kudos to IndyCar.com for having a very user friendly website regarding schedules/results
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Old 11 Mar 2017, 00:19 (Ref:3717912)   #4
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D.R.T. should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridD.R.T. should be qualifying in the top 5 on the grid
Impressive by Dixon
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Old 11 Mar 2017, 03:08 (Ref:3717922)   #5
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Paradise City is going for a new lap record!Paradise City is going for a new lap record!Paradise City is going for a new lap record!Paradise City is going for a new lap record!Paradise City is going for a new lap record!Paradise City is going for a new lap record!
It's been like years since I've seen Indycar. Did they take a year off or something?

Kimball showing good pace I see. Nice to see Bourdais up there too.
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Old 11 Mar 2017, 17:57 (Ref:3718021)   #6
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RWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridRWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridRWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridRWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
Any practice or qualifying on tv or internet stream to watch other than the race?
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Old 11 Mar 2017, 18:14 (Ref:3718023)   #7
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Originally Posted by RWill2073 View Post
Any practice or qualifying on tv or internet stream to watch other than the race?
Qualifying is from 2:55pm - 4:10pm local time but nothing on the IndyCar website about showing it. Try clicking on the live timing and scoring link, just before qualifying starts.
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Old 11 Mar 2017, 20:12 (Ref:3718045)   #8
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Qualifying is live http://racecontrol.indycar.com/
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Old 11 Mar 2017, 22:34 (Ref:3718066)   #9
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Qualifying result:

It's early days yet but it looks like Ganassi switching back to Honda and the freeze on aero-kits, has redressed the balance somewhat between Honda and Chevy, with 4 Hondas in the Fast Six but it's still a Chevy on Pole, with Will Power behind the wheel for the third time in a row at St. Pete's.

1 Will Power, Team Penske. Dallara/Chevrolet
2 Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing. Dallara/Honda
3 James Hinchcliffe, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. Dallara/Honda
4 Josef Newgarden, Team Penske. Dallara/Chevrolet
5 Takuma Sato, Andretti Autosport. Dallara/Honda
6 Tony Kanaan, Chip Ganassi Racing. Dallara/Honda
7 Max Chilton, Chip Ganassi Racing. Dallara/Honda
8 Alexander Rossi, Andretti Herta. Dallara/Honda
9 Charlie Kimball, Chip Ganassi Racing. Dallara/Honda
10 Graham Rahal, Rahal Letterman Lanigan. Dallara/Honda
11 Carlos Munoz, AJ Foyt Enterprises. Dallara/Chevrolet
12 Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti Autosport. Dallara/Honda
13 Spencer Pigot, Ed Carpenter Racing. Dallara/Chevrolet
14 Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske. Dallara/Chevrolet
15 Marco Andretti, Andretti Autosport. Dallara/Honda
16 Helio Castroneves, Team Penske. Dallara/Chevrolet
17 Mikhail Aleshin, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. Dallara/Honda
18 Ed Jones, Dale Coyne Racing. Dallara/Honda
19 J.R. Hildebrand, Ed Carpenter Racing. Dallara/Chevrolet
20 Conor Daly, AJ Foyt Enterprises. Dallara/Chevrolet
21 Sebastien Bourdais, Dale Coyne Racing. Dallara/Honda
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Old 12 Mar 2017, 00:28 (Ref:3718086)   #10
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Shocking to see Power on the pole for a street race.

Seriously, a bit surprising to see Seabass and Simon down as far as they are. Issues or just off?
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Old 12 Mar 2017, 00:35 (Ref:3718088)   #11
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I missed it but I think Bourdais crashed, hence starting last. Don't know about Pagenaud. Honda seem a lot closer this year.
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Old 12 Mar 2017, 05:10 (Ref:3718117)   #12
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Bourdais crashed but it would seem Pagenaud just couldn't find any form.
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Old 12 Mar 2017, 06:38 (Ref:3718130)   #13
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RWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridRWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridRWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridRWill2073 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
I want to say it's shocking to see both castroneves and pagenaud so low, and while it is, if you look at who is above them, everyone except for sato and Kimball are guys that are either proven race winners or extremely talented. So the depth of the series just seems to be so much that you can see championship contenders down in the bottom half sometimes on merit. You won't find that in any other series.
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Old 12 Mar 2017, 06:56 (Ref:3718132)   #14
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D.R.T. should be qualifying in the top 5 on the gridD.R.T. should be qualifying in the top 5 on the grid
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Bourdais crashed but it would seem Pagenaud just couldn't find any form.
Did he actually crash or just spin and stall bringing out the red flag.

Cars who now cause a red are parked for the rest of the session
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Old 12 Mar 2017, 14:41 (Ref:3718180)   #15
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Did he actually crash or just spin and stall bringing out the red flag.

Cars who now cause a red are parked for the rest of the session
According to Racer.com

"Sebastien Bourdais was less than pleased to conclude his qualifying session against the Turn 13 barriers. The four-time Champ Car champion went straight on entry to the final corner at the end of his first lap, smashed the nose of his Dale Coyne Racing Honda in a meeting with the tire bundles, and caused a red flag as his car and broken front wings were retrieved from the circuit."

http://www.racer.com/indycar/item/13...the-back-start
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