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Old 4 Apr 2018, 13:03 (Ref:3812788)   #1
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Round 2: Diamond Desert Valley Casino, Phoenix Grand Prix. ISM Raceway, 6-7 April

Round 2: Diamond Desert Valley Casino, Phoenix Grand Prix. ISM Raceway, Avondale. 6-7 April.

This will be the third running of the race since IndyCar returned in 2016, after an 11 year absence.

The first race ever to be held at Phoenix was in 1915, on a dirt oval at the Arizona State Fairgrounds. In 1950 the American Automobile Association revived the race and when the United States Auto Club became the sanctioning body, the race was added to their calendar in 1956. In 1964, the race was moved to the newly built Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, on the outskirts of Phoenix.

During the USAC era, two races a year were held, the Jimmy Bryan 150 in Spring and Bobby Ball Memorial in the Fall/Autumn. Both races were named after local race drivers who were killed at Phoenix. After the split with USAC, the race became a CART event from 1979 to 1995. The track continued to hold two races a year, with the spring race often serving as the season opener but in 1987 the Fall race was dropped. In 1995, after a dispute between the track owners and CART series officials, the event was dropped from the 1996 CART calendar and immediately switched to the IRL for that year. It remained on the IRL calendar until 2005.

Since its construction the track has changed its name, from Phoenix International Raceway, (1964 - March 2015), Jeff Gordon Raceway (2015) and Phoenix Raceway (2017). In September 2017, track owners International Speedway Corporation, (ISC) formed a partnership with Ingenuity Sun Media (ISM Connect) and the track was renamed ISM Raceway at the beginning of this year. Like last year's race, this will also be a night race.

Some trivia:
Phoenix saw the last career win for Mario Andretti, in 1993.
The driver with most wins: 6, Al Unser Sr, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1976, 1979, 1985.
The Team with most wins: 9, Penske Racing/Team Penske, 1979, 1982, 1985, 1989, 1990, 1994, 2002, 2005, 2017.

Track layout:
The track has both road course and oval configurations. The original road course ran both inside and outside of the oval but was replaced in 1991 with an infield course. The oval gets its unusual layout with the "dogleg", due to a combination of terrain, the original road course and a drag strip. In 2011, the oval underwent significant changes, the most notable were to the front stretch, widened to 62 feet (19 m) and the "dogleg" being moved outward by 95 feet (29 m), as well as its radius being increased to 500 feet (150 m).

In January 2017, ISC and Phoenix Raceway announced a $178 million renovation programme, called the Phoenix Raceway Project Powered by DC Solar, which will be completed by November 2018. The most notable changes to the track will be to the start/finish line, which will be between the current Turn 1 and the dogleg, thus changing the turn numbering and also the pit road. The pit road entrance will move down the new backstretch, currently the front straightaway and the exit will be just past the new start/finish line. The radius of pit road, through the new Turn 4, currently Turn 1, will be tightened and the pit road stalls extend around the new turn 4, currently Turn 1 and just past the new start/finish line. The majority of the pit stalls will be on a curve before the start/finish line.



Length: 1.022 Miles (1.644 Km)
Turns: 4

Lap record old configuration: Arie Luyendyck, March 23, 1996. 19.608, 183.599 mph (295.474 km/h),

Treadway Racing, Reynard 96i-Ford Cosworth XB, Indy Racing League.

Lap record new configuration: Hélio Castroneves, 28 April, 2017. 18.8701, 194.975 mph (313.782

Km/h) Team Penske, Dallara DW12-Chevrolet IndyCar V6. Verizon IndyCar Series.

Last year's race:
Castroneves took Pole and at the start of the race took the lead. Newgarden moved into second after passing both Power and Hildebrand. However, chaos ensued as Aleshin spun in the middle of Turn 1, triggering a multi-car incident, taking championship leader Bourdais, Chilton, Andretti and Rahal out of the race. Hunter-Reay suffered a puncture and was forced to pit, dropping to 15th.

Racing resumed on lap 22 and after a 21 lap clean up, Pagenaud moved into fourth place ahead of Hildebrand. For several laps all four Penske drivers, Castroneves, Newgarden, Power and Pagenaud were in first, second, third and fourth places, repectivley. However, on lap 70, Pagenaud was able to catch and overtake Power and move into third place.

The first round of scheduled pit stops began shortly after and Power leapfroged all three of his teammates to take the lead, with Castroneves, Pagenaud and Newgarden behind. The order remained largely unchanged for the following stint, though Newgarden, struggled with a broken front wing, losing fourth position to a hard charging Hildebrand.

At around lap 120, the second round of pit stops came, during which Alexander Rossi made contact with the wall and was forced to retire. There was no caution, though shortly after, Rossi's team mate Sato made contact with the wall at Turn 4 and came to a stop on the front stretch, bringing out the second full course yellow. Due to the pit stop cycle, Pagenaud now had a sizable advantage which, allowed him to pit under yellow, without losing track position.

The restart was on lap 149 and Pagenaud was able to pull out a healthy lead, due to several lapped cars being between him and Power. Further back, Newgarden had quickly climbed back up into the top five, after finally getting the chance to change his front wing. There was little change in the order as the field cycled through the final scheduled pit stop, with Pagenaud's lead now over 5.5 seconds by lap 215.

Shortly after the final stops, Newgarden and Hunter-Reay made contact, breaking Newgarden's new front wing and damaging Hunter-Reay's suspension, forcing him to retire. For the second time in three races, all the Andretti Autosport cars were out. Newgarden changed his front wing again, dropping him to 10th. Hildebrand, was was able to pass both Newgarden and Castroneves, who had slowed to avoid the incident between Newgarden and Hunter-Reay, giving Hldebrand third place.

From then on, it was plain sailing for Pagenaud, who finished over nine seconds ahead of Power. Hildebrand was third, securing his first podium finish in six years. Castroneves was fourth, while Dixon, who ahd a quiet race, was fifth and one lap down. This was Pagenaud's, 10th career victory
and his first ever on an oval. It was also a mile stone win for Team Penske, as they scored their 450th win in motorsports and their 100th IndyCar win on an oval. Pagenaud now took the lead in the driver's championship.

Pole:
Hélio Castroneves. 00:37.7538, 194.905 mph (313.669 Km/h). Two lap average.

Winner:
Simon Pagenaud
Team Penske
Dallara DW12-Chevrolet IndyCar V6

Laps 250
Distance 255.5 Miles (411.186 km)
Race Time 1:46:25
Average Speed 144.058 mph (231.838 Km/h)
Caution periods: 2
Caution laps: 32

Race Broadcast:
NBCSN. April 7, 9:00pm, ET.

Last edited by bjohnsonsmith; 4 Apr 2018 at 13:14.
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Old 5 Apr 2018, 14:50 (Ref:3812985)   #2
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NaBUru38 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridNaBUru38 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the gridNaBUru38 should be qualifying in the top 3 on the grid
Let's see if the new bodykits do their magic.

Also, remember to place your bets on the Bet 'Em IndyContest.
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Old 7 Apr 2018, 13:58 (Ref:3813583)   #3
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Qualifying:

1 Sebastien Bourdais, Dale Coyne Racing. Dallara/Honda. 39.0285s
2 Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske. Dallara/Chevrolet. 0.0811s
3 Will Power, Team Penske. Dallara/Chevrolet. 0.3523s
4 Alexander Rossi, Andretti Autosport. Dallara/Honda. 0.3584s
5 James Hinchcliffe, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. Dallara/Honda. 0.5880s
6 Robert Wickens, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. Dallara/Honda. 0.6690s
7 Josef Newgarden, Team Penske. Dallara/Chevrolet. 0.6867s
8 Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti Autosport. Dallara/Honda. 0.8099s
9 Tony Kanaan, AJ Foyt Enterprises. Dallara/Chevrolet. 0.8339s
10 Pietro Fittipaldi, Dale Coyne Racing. Dallara/Honda. 0.8440s
11 Ed Jones, Chip Ganassi Racing. Dallara/Honda. 0.8949s
12 Graham Rahal, Rahal Letterman Lanigan. Dallara/Honda. 0.9803s
13 Takuma Sato, Rahal Letterman Lanigan. Dallara/Honda. 1.1902s
14 Kyle Kaiser, Juncos Racing. Dallara/Chevrolet. 1.2124s
15 Spencer Pigot, Ed Carpenter Racing. Dallara/Chevrolet. 1.3990s
16 Matheus Leist, AJ Foyt Enterprises. Dallara/Chevrolet. 1.4430s
17 Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing. Dallara/Honda. 1.4459s
18 Ed Carpenter, Ed Carpenter Racing. Dallara/Chevrolet. 1.5710s
19 Gabby Chaves, Harding Racing. Dallara/Chevrolet. 1.6410s
20 Marco Andretti, Andretti Herta. Dallara/Honda. 1.8064s
21 Max Chilton, Carlin. Dallara/Chevrolet. 2.2039s
22 Charlie Kimball, Carlin. Dallara/Chevrolet. 2.4276s
23 Zach Veach, Andretti Autosport. Dallara/Honda. 2.8440s
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Old 7 Apr 2018, 15:09 (Ref:3813605)   #4
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RWill2073 has a real shot at the podium!RWill2073 has a real shot at the podium!RWill2073 has a real shot at the podium!RWill2073 has a real shot at the podium!RWill2073 has a real shot at the podium!
I thought it was amazing that bourdais admitted to thinking about the wreck every time he gets in the car at an oval. You would think that would affect his performance negatively. Instead, he seems to be at the top of his game. I've always pulled for him but I'm becoming a bigger fan every day.

I am loving the youth movement in the series right now. It's odd to see helio there again this week. I am so curious whether he is actually enjoying his imsa drive. He can't seem to let indycar go, and I wonder if sportscars is even something he can appreciate as a full time drive yet.
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Old 7 Apr 2018, 18:33 (Ref:3813710)   #5
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Pretty incredible from Seabass! 188 and change for the speed and his first oval pole in well over a decade!
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 02:41 (Ref:3813815)   #6
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For a moment it looked like Bourdais wasn't going to make the grid. The car had stalled and was stuck.
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 02:42 (Ref:3813816)   #7
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A very clean start and first couple of laps.
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:00 (Ref:3813817)   #8
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First FCY as it looks like Pietro Fittipaldi made contact with the wall.

Bourdais pits but knocks one of his pit crew over.
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:01 (Ref:3813818)   #9
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First FCY as it looks like Pietro Fittipaldi made contact with the wall.

Bourdais pits but knocks one of his pit crew over.
Rossi, I believe had some issues, too. Clean it up, boys! That was pretty sloppy.
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:05 (Ref:3813819)   #10
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Back to green flag and Power leads, as Bourdais and Rossi are given drive-thrus, for running over their tyre changers.
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:13 (Ref:3813821)   #11
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Bourdais seems a little rattled. Said "of course" when he stalled pre race then slapped his head when he hit the crew member.
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:29 (Ref:3813824)   #12
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Anyone else using T&S on in a web browser? The ginormous heading is rather annoying...
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:31 (Ref:3813826)   #13
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Loose wheel and a crazy 180 in the pits!
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:33 (Ref:3813827)   #14
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Another bad pistop, this time Matheus Leist is released before his left rear was properly attached and ended up driving a tricycle down pitlane. Luckily no FCY.
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Old 8 Apr 2018, 03:42 (Ref:3813829)   #15
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Great move by Wickens on Hinchcliffe.
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