Race weekend: Friday, July 29 – Sunday, July 31
Track: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, a 13-turn, 2.258-mile road course in Lexington, Ohio
Race distance: 90 laps / 203.22 miles
Entry List: The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (pdf)
Push-to-pass parameters: 10 activations for 20 seconds each
Firestone tire allotment: Eight sets primary, three sets alternate
Twitter: @Mid_Ohio @IndyCar, #Honda200, #IndyCar
Event website: www.midohio.com
INDYCAR website: www.IndyCar.com
2015 race winner: Graham Rahal (No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Honda)
2015 Verizon P1 Award winner: Scott Dixon (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet), 1:04.5814, 125.869 mph
Qualifying record: Scott Dixon, 1:04.5814, 125.869 mph, Aug. 1, 2015
NBCSN television broadcasts: Practice, 2 p.m. ET Friday, July 29 (live); Qualifying, 2 p.m. ET Saturday, July 30 (live); Race, 2 p.m. ET Sunday, July 31, CNBC (live); 5:30 p.m. ET Sunday, July 31, NBCSN (re-air); Brian Till is the lead announcer for the NBCSN broadcasts this weekend alongside analysts Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy. Pit reporters are Jon Beekhuis, Kevin Lee, Katie Hargitt and Robin Miller.
Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network broadcasts: Mark Jaynes is the chief announcer alongside analyst Davey Hamilton. Jake Query and Nick Yeoman are the turn announcers with Dave Furst, Rob Howden and Michael Young reporting from the pits. All Verizon IndyCar Series races as well as qualifying sessions are broadcast live on network affiliates, Sirius 212, XM 209, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app. All Verizon IndyCar Series practice sessions are available on IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app.
Video streaming: All practice sessions for the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series season not covered by television will be available on RaceControl.IndyCar.com.
INDYCAR Mobile app: Verizon Wireless puts fans around the world in the driver’s seat with its INDYCAR Mobile app. The app has been enhanced with new features to keep fans in the know of the latest race-day action. Exclusive features of the INDYCAR Mobile app for Verizon Wireless customers will stream live through the app and includes enhanced real-time leaderboard and car telemetry; the ability to follow the race in real time with the interactive 3D track; live in-car camera video streaming for select drivers during Verizon IndyCar Series races; live driver and pit crew radio transmissions during races and live Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network audio streaming during all track activities.
At-track schedule (all times local):
Friday, July 29
10 – 11:15 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #1, RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
2 – 3:15 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #2, NBCSN (Live)
Saturday, July 30
9:45 – 10:30 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #3, RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
2 p.m. – Qualifying for the Verizon P1 Award (three rounds of knockout qualifying), NBCSN (Live)
Sunday, July 31
10:15 – 10:45 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series warmup, RaceControl.IndyCar.com (Live)
1:58 p.m. – Driver Introductions
2:38 p.m. – Command to Start Engines
2:45 p.m. – The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio (90 laps/203.22 miles), CNBC (Live); re-air at 5:30 on NBCSN
• There have been seven different winners in the 11 previous Verizon IndyCar Series completed races in 2016: Juan Pablo Montoya (Streets of St. Petersburg), Scott Dixon (Phoenix International Raceway), Simon Pagenaud (Streets of Long Beach, Barber Motorsports Park and Grand Prix of Indianapolis), Alexander Rossi (Indianapolis 500), Sebastien Bourdais (Raceway at Belle Isle-1), Will Power (Raceway at Belle Isle-2, Road America and Toronto) and Josef Newgarden (Iowa Speedway). Dixon’s win at Phoenix on April 2 tied him for fourth on the all-time Indy car victory list with Al Unser at 39. He is the active leader in wins. Bourdais’ win at Belle Isle on June 4 tied him with Bobby Unser for sixth on the all-time list with 35 wins. Power’s win at Toronto on July 17 gave him sole possession of 13th all-time with 28.
• The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio will be the 32nd Indy car race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Graham Rahal won the race in 2015. Johnny Rutherford won the first Indy car race at Mid-Ohio in 1980.
• The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio will be the ninth race on a road/street course in 2016. The first eight races were won by Juan Pablo Montoya (St. Petersburg), Simon Pagenaud (Long Beach, Barber and Grand Prix of Indianapolis), Sebastien Bourdais (Belle Isle-1) and Will Power (Belle Isle-2, Road America and Toronto).
• Scott Dixon is the winningest Indy car driver at Mid-Ohio with five victories (2007, 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2014). Emerson Fittipaldi won at Mid-Ohio three times, while Michael Andretti, Helio Castroneves, Teo Fabi, Bobby Rahal, Al Unser Jr. and Alex Zanardi have all won at Mid-Ohio twice. Past winners Dixon, Castroneves (2000 and 2001), Montoya (1999), Charlie Kimball (2013) and Graham Rahal (2015) are entered this year.
• There have been five different pole winners since Helio Castroneves won back-to-back poles in 2007-08. Other Mid-Ohio pole winners entered in this year’s race are: Will Power (2010 and 2012), Scott Dixon (2011 and 2015), Ryan Hunter-Reay (2013) and Sebastien Bourdais (2014).
• Ten drivers have won the race from the pole – Mario Andretti (1984), Bobby Rahal (1985), Roberto Guerrero (1987), Teo Fabi (1989), Michael Andretti (1990 and 1991), Al Unser Jr. (1994), Alex Zanardi (1996), Patrick Carpentier (2002), Paul Tracy (2003) and Scott Dixon (2011).
• At least 17 drivers entered in the event have competed in past Indy car races at Mid-Ohio. Tony Kanaan (14) has the most starts at Mid-Ohio among the entered drivers. Twelve of those drivers have led laps at the track (Scott Dixon 223, Helio Castroneves 147, Will Power 87, Juan Pablo Montoya 49, Charlie Kimball 46, Sebastien Bourdais 38, Ryan Hunter-Reay 33, James Hinchcliffe 30, Graham Rahal 23, Simon Pagenaud 14, Kanaan 13 and Josef Newgarden 5).
• Chip Ganassi Racing has won 10 times at Mid-Ohio, including six of the last seven races at the track. Ganassi’s winning drivers are: Alex Zanardi (1996-97), Juan Pablo Montoya (1999), Scott Dixon (2007, 2009, 2011-12 and 2014), Dario Franchitti (2010) and Charlie Kimball (2013).
• Team Penske has seven wins at the track: Emerson Fittipaldi (1992-93), Al Unser Jr. (1994-95), Helio Castroneves (2000-01) and Ryan Briscoe (2008).
• Scott Dixon has finished in the top five in nine of his 11 races at Mid-Ohio, including five wins between 2007 and 2014… Will Power has finished in the top five in four of his seven starts at Mid-Ohio…Simon Pagenaud has finished on the podium three times in his previous five starts. Sebastien Bourdais has three top-five finishes in six starts.
• Four rookies – Max Chilton, Conor Daly, Spencer Pigot and Alexander Rossi – are expected to compete. Rossi leads the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings by 89 points over Daly, with Chilton 127 points behind.
• Tony Kanaan seeks to start his 261st consecutive race this weekend, which would extend his Indy car record streak that began in June 2001 at Portland. Teammate Scott Dixon has made 202 consecutive starts heading into the weekend, which is the third-longest streak in Indy car racing.
• Helio Castroneves will attempt to make his 323rd career Indy car start, which ranks fourth on the all-time list. Tony Kanaan will attempt to make his 322nd Indy car start, which is fifth all-time.
• The 2016 season is the second in which aerodynamic bodywork component kits are used. The aero kits, produced by engine manufacturers Chevrolet and Honda for their respective supplied teams, are the latest technical innovation to enhance on-track performance through competitive aerodynamic development. Each manufacturer produces two kits for teams – one for short ovals/road courses/street courses and another for superspeedway ovals – but within each kit, teams have multiple component options available.
• The second season of aero kit competition complements the fifth year of engine manufacturer competition between Chevrolet and Honda with their 2.2-liter, twin-turbocharged V-6 engines. It will be another season testing speed and durability to determine the manufacturer champion.
THE HONDA INDY 200 AT MID-OHIO PRE-EVENT QUOTES:
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 2 Hawk Performance Team Penske Chevrolet): “We just need to get out of this rut we’ve been in. We’ve had great cars every race, but just haven’t been able to avoid the bad luck. It has come in practice, in qualifying and in the races. It just always seems to be something. I have no doubt that the Hawk Performance Chevrolet will be ready to go this weekend. I know what it takes to be successful at Mid-Ohio. It’s a very challenging circuit, so we’ll have to be on top of our game to get a good result.”
HELIO CASTRONEVES (No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet): “The Hitachi Chevrolet team has been consistent this year. We’re in the fight for the championship and now it’s time to step it up and put some pressure on those guys in front of us. Mid-Ohio is a track that fits my style on road courses. It’s been a few years since we’ve gotten the kind of results representative of the car we’ve had, so we’ll need to work hard to get that back. I like the challenge of a course like Mid-Ohio. I’m confident in our ability to be in the fight this weekend and really looking forward to it.”
JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 5 Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda): “Mid-Ohio is one of the best races all year. The track is incredible for us as drivers, but I love the vibe there for fans as well. It’s got that big camping culture, all natural seating around the place, it’s just a cool setup. As far as races I’d like to attend as a fan one day, this one is up there. I was on the podium last time I raced there so I’m hoping to get the No. 5 Arrow Electronics car up front again.”
MIKHAIL ALESHIN (No. 7 SMP Racing Schmidt Peterson Honda): “Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course is one of the nicest tracks I’ve been to. It has a great configuration with lots of very technical sectors, lots of fun elevations and great fans. As a team, we’ve been improving all season in the No. 7 SMP Racing car and especially the last two races, so we’re looking to keep that positive momentum going into the next weekend.”
MAX CHILTON (No. 8 Gallagher Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet): “I am really looking forward to heading back to one of the best road courses in North America. I hugely enjoyed the track last year and was on the podium in Indy Lights. The crowd is always electric with a huge amount of camping adding to the atmosphere.”
SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet): “I have a soft spot for Mid-Ohio, to be honest. I think we have five victories there over the years and 10 or so with the team in total. It’s a place that we always feel that all four of our teams will have a shot at winning, and there aren’t many tracks out there where your confidence level is that high as a team. It’s a track that really feels like home to me.”
TONY KANAAN (No. 10 NTT Data Chevrolet): “This team obviously has a strong history at Mid-Ohio and it’s a really good feeling to be able to come into a race weekend knowing that this team knows how to get it done here. It’s a difficult road course with the passing opportunities being so limited, but the atmosphere is always so great. You can just tell that the Mid-Ohio fans really love the shows we put on for them. The No. 10 NTT Data Chevrolet has been so consistent this season and we’ve been really strong at the last few street and road courses – I think we’re just knocking on the door of our first win this season.”
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS (No. 11 Team Hydroxycut-KVSH Racing Chevrolet): “I am looking forward to racing at Mid-Ohio, especially following the pretty successful test we just had last week (July 21). Results at that track have not been great besides a podium finish in 2014, but dating back to my return in INDYCAR in 2011, I have only missed the fast 12 (in qualifying) once (13th in 2013). It is a layout I very much enjoy with the elevation changes and the flow of the curves that spreads from slow to very fast speeds. Qualifying is key to having a good race because it is difficult to overtake. There are a couple of places you can do it, Turn 4 at the end of the back straight and Turn 2, but being up front, like anywhere, always makes things easier. The Hydroxycut-KVSH Racing team has not had the success we were hoping for so far this season, but we keep working hard and, if we put up a good result this weekend, we can stay in contention for a top-five finish in the championship.”
WILL POWER (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): “After a bit of a slow start this season, the No. 12 Verizon Chevy team has built a lot of momentum in the middle part of the season and we’ll look to keep it going at Mid-Ohio. I really enjoy racing at Mid-Ohio. The natural terrain creates a fast, yet technical, circuit. It is not a track that I’ve won at before, so this would be a great time to do that and we’ll need to work hard to accomplish that. We’ve gotten ourselves into the championship fight, but it’s still a little early to be counting points. We just need to keep doing what we have been and let the points manage themselves.”
TAKUMA SATO (No. 14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Honda): “Mid-Ohio is one of the most popular tracks among fans and it’s my favorite. I enjoy driving this twisted road course and it always reminds me of the U.K.’s national circuits like Oulton Park, where I was competing in British F3 and I loved that. In fact, some fans brought pictures of my F3 days as well as F1 so that’s telling you the fans coming here are so enthusiastic. Also, we have great support from the Honda employees and families, so that is also very nice. I look forward to having a good weekend.”
GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Honda): “Mid-Ohio is home to me. I grew up at the track and spent so many days there as a kid. Watching races there, being a part of it, seeing and loving what it’s all about is a big part of who I am. The way (winning the 2015 Mid-Ohio race) all came together last year, every aspect of it made it perfect for me. Having the Buckeye helmet and stuff, having my entire family there – which never happens, ever since everyone is spread out – having the crowd support, to have that sort of experience makes it impossible to tell anyone how much it means to me. The sense of accomplishment for me is so great. Everyone knows this but I love Ohio. I’m very proud to be from Ohio and that event means so much to me. To win it is a career accomplishment that I will never forgot or take for granted. I sure hope it happens again, but you never know. Now there is probably less pressure because we have won there. I think the fans around Mid-Ohio have wondered if or when that (win) was going to happen. I hope it revitalizes the fan base. Last year the crowd was probably the best I had ever seen. I just hope more and more people come out and support us this year. I expect that we should be very competitive and our performance from the other road courses should carry over to Mid-Ohio. The tricky part is that everyone is competitive nowadays. There are no longer any bad teams or non-contenders. I fully expect it to be a patented tight INDYCAR race weekend, but I hope the Steak ‘n Shake team can come out on top again.”
CONOR DALY (No. 18 Jonathan Byrd’s Hospitality Honda): “This seems to come as a surprise to a lot of people, but this will be my first time racing Mid-Ohio so it was nice to be able to test there last week (July 21). We got through a lot of things that we haven’t been able to get to on a race weekend because they’re big changes that take time, so it’s good to be able to start with more information as we go into the weekend. This will be the first road course/street course that we’ve got to test at and then race at, so that will be really nice.” … “I think everyone is going to be so, so close. It’s one of those road courses that people have been driving on for years and it’s been the same for so many years. I think the field is going be closer than ever, which is hard to believe. We just have to do our best to start up front again and try to stay up front this time and get another solid finish under our belt.” … “I was really enjoying the track during the test. It’s a very physical place and I’m sure it will be hot this weekend, so the physical side will be really tough. The track itself is really fun and it flows together really well. Hopefully we can put on a good race for everyone that comes out.”
SPENCER PIGOT (No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet): “I’m very excited for the race this weekend at Mid-Ohio; we had a productive test last week. It felt like the car is made for tracks like this, it was amazing to feel the cornering speeds the car is capable of. I think we will be able to build on what we learned and hopefully turn it into a strong weekend for the Fuzzy’s Vodka/Rising Star Racing car.”
JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 21 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka/ECR Chevrolet): “I can’t wait to get back to Mid-Ohio. It’s a great road course track, one of the best we have in North America. I’m excited to get back in the car and see what we can do points-wise. We’ve had good cars around Mid-Ohio the past couple of years, it’s a really good shot for the team to get a win there. I feel confident that we’ll have a good effort with the whole Fuzzy’s Vodka crew and we should be able to move up the board a little bit after the weekend and see where we’re at in the points heading into Pocono. I’m ready to get back in the car after a weekend off.”
SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 22 PPG Automotive Refinish Team Penske Chevrolet): “I always look forward to competing at Mid-Ohio. It’s a classic event for the Verizon IndyCar series. I’ve been fortunate to have some success there over the years in both INDYCAR and sports cars. I’m excited about being in the PPG Automotive Refinish Chevrolet again. We’ve had some good results in those colors this season. The No. 22 team tested there last week (July 21) and we were pleased at the end of the day. We went through our list of tests to experiment, which will lead us in a good direction for the race weekend. We’re all ready to go.”
CARLOS MUNOZ (No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda): “Mid-Ohio is one of the tracks I like the most in America. It is a very challenging track and I’m looking forward to seeing how the weekend goes for us. We’ve had a really disappointing last few races and we really need a good result at Mid-Ohio. Hopefully we can change our luck around.”
MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 27 Snapple Honda): “Mid-Ohio this year is going to be a physical race with the current aero kits, but I’m looking forward to the competition. It’s always a fun event weekend with a lot of fan support and a great turnout for Honda in their backyard.”
RYAN HUNTER-REAY (No. 28 DHL Honda): “Always a special weekend on the Verizon IndyCar Series calendar, Mid-Ohio has been a big part of my career from my teenage years in Skip Barber to my first-ever Indy car podium finish. This place is certainly one of my top three favorite racetracks and is one of the best as an overall event as well. We’ll be looking to improve on our fourth-place finish at Road America a few weeks ago and getting the DHL Honda back on the podium.”
JACK HAWKSWORTH (No. 41 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Honda): “Mid-Ohio is one of the most technical and flowing tracks on the schedule. It demands not only a good car in the high-speed and low-speed sections, but also good technique with clean footwork in the low-speed rhythm section and commitment in the high-speed sections.”
CHARLIE KIMBALL (No. 83 Tresiba Chevrolet): “I’m looking forward to Mid-Ohio after a weekend off. It’s not quite a ‘home race’ for me, but it’s close enough to Indy that we always have a great group at the track taking advantage of the awesome setting. We had a strong qualifying last year, starting in the Firestone Fast Six, but just got caught out with some bad luck early on during the race. It’s a course that really has a bit of everything – tight corners, flowing corners, elevation changes – so it can be challenging, for sure. The Chip Ganassi Racing cars are always fast here, so we’ll be working hard to put the No. 83 Tresiba Chevrolet back on the podium again this weekend.”
ALEXANDER ROSSI (No. 98 Castrol Edge/Curb Honda): “Looking forward to going back to Mid-Ohio. It’s the second track on the schedule I have a history at, so the familiarity should make the adaptation a lot easier on Friday. I know the team has been working really hard the past couple weeks to improve the car and hopefully it can lead to a positive road course result.”