Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach Returns This Weekend
- Classic street circuit event will feature NTT INDYCAR SERIES finale
- Highlights Acura’s expanding role in motorsports
- WeatherTech SportsCar Championship round highlights Saturday activities
TORRANCE, Calif. (Sept. 22, 2021) – The longest-running North American temporary street circuit motorsports event the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach returns this weekend with three days of non-stop action.
“With our U.S. headquarters nearby in Torrance, this is a true ‘home’ event for the Acura brand,” said Jon Ikeda, Acura vice president and brand officer. “The Grand Prix of Long Beach is one of North America’s premier motorsports events, and an institution in Southern California. Acura is delighted and proud to be associated with the Grand Prix of Long Beach, and we look forward to a long and successful partnership.”
The weekend will be headlined by the season finale of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, where Honda last week clinched its 10th – and fourth consecutive – Indy car Manufacturers’ Championship; and Honda-powered driver Alex Palou reclaimed the Drivers’ Championship points lead and could claim his first title.
The IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will be the feature event on Saturday, where Wayne Taylor Racing drivers Ricky Taylor and Filipe Albuquerque lead the Drivers’ Championship in their Acura ARX-05, after eight of 10 events.
The Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach entry includes 15 Honda-powered Indy cars and five Acura racers in Saturday’s IMSA event. In addition to championship contender Palou, the Indy car field includes six-time series champion Scott Dixon, seven-time NASCAR title winner Jimmie Johnson; two-time Long Beach winner Alexander Rossi; additional previous winners including
James Hinchcliffe, Takuma Sato, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Helio Castroneves; series veterans Colton Herta, Marcus Ericsson, Graham Rahal, Jack Harvey, Oliver Askew, Ed Jones; and Formula One veteran Romain Grosjean.
In IMSA’s featured Daytona Prototype International category, Albuquerque and Taylor come to Long Beach seeking to increase their championship advantage; while former series champion Dane Cameron and Olivier Pla make up the driver pairing for the Meyer Shank Racing Acura ARX-05 prototype. In the production-based GTD division, three teams field Acura NSX GT3 Evo’s for defending GTD champions Mario Farnbacher/Matt McMurry [Compass Racing], Andy Lally/John Potter [Magnus with Archangel] and Till Bechtolsheimer/Marc Miller [Gradient Racing].
In addition, the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend will include the Super Drift Challenge under the lights on Friday and Saturday nights, the SPEED Energy Stadium Super Trucks, and the new-for-2021 Historic Formula Atlantic Challenge and Global Time Attack.
Live network television coverage Sunday’s 95-lap NTT INDYCAR SERIES finale starts at 3 p.m. EDT on NBC. Complete, flag-to-flag race coverage also will be available on NBC Peacock, the INDYCAR Radio Network, and carried by SiriusXM satellite radio.
Saturday’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship race will be broadcast on NBCSN, starting at 5 p.m. EDT. Live flag-to-flag race coverage also will be available NBC Sports Gold TrackPass, on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports App with NBCSN authentication.
Honda Racing social media content and video links from WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca can be found on Instagram (www.instagram.com/hondaracing_hpd), Twitter (twitter.com/HondaRacing_HPD) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/HondaRacingHPD). Additional features and long-form videos can be found on the Honda Racing/HPD YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV).
Fans can also follow the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach on Facebook (GrandPrixLB), Twitter @GPLongBeach (#AGPLB) and Instagram @GPLongBeach.
In 2018, Acura made a successful return to the top level of sports car racing in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, going on to sweep the Manufacturer, Driver and Team championships in both 2019 and 2020.
Honda has a long, winning history with Indy cars at Long Beach. Honda-powered drivers have won seven of the last 11 Grands Prix – and 14 times in 20 appearances – including the two most recent events, in 2018-19, with Alexander Rossi. Native Californian Jimmy Vasser scored Honda’s first Long Beach victory in 1996, with other Honda-powered winners including Alex Zanardi (1997-98), Michael Andretti (2002), Dario Franchitti (2009), Sato (2013) and Hinchcliffe (2017).