CHEVROLET REVS UP FOR THE SONSIO GRAND PRIX AT ROAD AMERICA
DETROIT (June 15, 2023) – The eighth round of the 2023 NTT INDYCAR Series season takes the Team Chevy drivers and teams to Plymouth, Wisconsin for this weekend’s Sonsio Grand Prix at Road America.
A 640-acre park-like road circuit deep in the heart of the Badger State, Chevrolet looks to add a fourth victory since 2012 in the V6 2.2-liter twin turbo direct injected era, capturing three wins already (2016, 2018, 2022). Entering the event weekend as defending winner and looking to go back-to-back, Team Chevy holds 11 podiums and 287 laps led since the 2016 series return to Road America.
Returning to competition this weekend with Ed Carpenter Racing in the No. 20 BITNILE.com Chevrolet, Ryan Hunter-Reay, after competing with the Bowtie brand in this year’s 107th Running of the Indianapolis 500 with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing, looks ahead to getting back behind the wheel on a road course at Road America.
“This is a unique scenario where myself, coming in at this point, it gives potentially the team and myself an opportunity to come at it from a fresh perspective, looking at things a little bit differently than how they have been for the last two or three years straight. I am totally focused on getting to Road America, doing the best job I can for that group of people at Ed Carpenter Racing who I have a great relationship with, and that’s really where it is.”
“I’ve got a great relationship with Ed, but I also have had working relationships and really strong relationship currently with the team manager at Ed Carpenter, Matt Barnes, the engineer, my engineer, Pete Craig, added Hunter-Reay. “[I’ve] worked with them before. I’m in a position where I could potentially contribute to the team as a whole. Why not? What are the why nots? What are the whys? Just putting all that together, and in the end, it ended up coming down to the people.”
A fan and series-favorite alike on the INDYCAR schedule, Rob Buckner, Chevrolet Engineering Program Manager for the NTT INDYCAR Series at General Motors, also notes the technical nuances of the circuit and the racy nature of the favored venue.
“The variety of tracks that our Chevrolet-powered teams race on in the NTT INDYCAR Series is on of the main reasons the Series is so competitive and exciting,” said Buckner. “The Month of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway 2.5-mile oval, followed by the tight technical street course in Downtown Detroit now to the 4.08-mile Road America natural road course shows the versatility of our 2.2-liter V6 engine, and we are ready to maximize the performance at Road America.”
“The track presents a variety of engineering challenges,” he added. “It is very fast with long, wide-open straights but at end of these are hard braking zones for a number of 90-degree corners. Throw in high-speed corners like the Carousel and the Kink and a new surface that is an unknown with regard to tire wear and handling, it shapes up to be another exciting race in Wisconsin.”
The Sonsio Grand Prix at Road America kicks off with Practice 1 Friday, June 16 at 4 p.m. ET, with Practice 2 starting Saturday at 10:55 a.m. ET. Qualifications and the Firestone Fast Six also take place Saturday, starting at 1:55 p.m. ET. A final warm-up will start race day Sunday at 10:15 a.m. ET. All practice and qualifying will be live on Peacock, INDYCAR Radio and SiriusXM Channel 160. The 55-lap, 220.77-mile race Sunday, June 18 will take the green flag at 1 p.m. ET live on USA Network.
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING (QUOTES):
Pato O’Ward, No. 5 Chevrolet at Arrow McLaren INDYCAR:
“After testing at Road America last week, I really loved driving the track with its new repaved surface. It is really fast, as it should be, and I’m curious to see how it races with either high or low tire degradation.”
Felix Rosenqvist, No. 6 Chevrolet at Arrow McLaren INDYCAR:
”We’re excited to be back to the most beautiful track in North America: Road America. We had a test day there last week, so I hope that will give us a little bit of an edge over our competitors. The track is newly paved, so it’s different from the past. It seems to be a lot quicker with more grip, so it creates a different challenge, and maybe it will reset the field a little bit.”
Alexander Rossi, No. 7 Chevrolet at Arrow McLaren INDYCAR:
”Road America is a place of great memories for me. Each race is a new challenge, a new opportunity, and this one is no exception. The repave has certainly changed the characteristics of the track, but we had a great test here last week and feel prepared for the weekend. This is the kind of race that can define a season, so we’re not taking anything lightly. We want to deliver a strong result for our team, our partners and, of course, the incredible fans who always show up to support us.”
Gavin Ward, Race Director at Arrow McLaren INDYCAR:
“Racing at Road America is always one of the highlights of the season with great fans and a stunning race track. It’s a classic road course that rewards bravery and punishes mistakes. The track has been freshly repaved since last year, so changes in grip, tire behavior and bumps will all be things that teams need to adapt to. All three of our drivers are in the top 10 in the points, and we’re looking to move upwards with more solid results this weekend.”
Ryan Hunter-Reay, No. 20 Chevrolet at Ed Carpenter Racing:
“I am looking forward to Road America! Obviously, it’s a tough situation, especially mid-season. A lot has happened in a short amount of time and it’s going to be a huge undertaking. I’ve been out of the car, at least in terms of turning right, for a year and a half. I have stayed current in prototypes and just came out of the Indy 500, but this will be new all-around. Even the small things I knew about Road America since I began driving there age 17, all of the little nuances are gone. It’s a new track surface, new team, new car and a new group of people to work with! I look forward to the challenge, but I am also a realist. I am approaching this from a pretty disciplined standpoint and curbing some expectations. There’s a lot to digest and consider, but we are plugging away, taking it hour by hour, day by day and looking forward to the race weekend ahead.”
Rinus VeeKay, No. 21 Chevrolet at Ed Carpenter Racing:
“Race week! I am very excited to drive the Direct Supply car, it is a really cool paint scheme and I always love to race in their colors. It’s nice to get back to Road America, it’s my favorite track. America’s National Park of Speed! Can’t wait to get there and go for a good result. I am also ready to begin learning from Ryan Hunter-Reay, my new teammate!”
Santino Ferrucci, No. 14 Chevrolet at AJ Foyt Racing:
“I think it’s a fun track, very European style, also incredibly quick and provides a lot of racing. It’s also nice that it’s a three-stop race as opposed to a typical two-stop which makes racing a little bit more fun and enjoyable for us drivers.”
Benjamin Pedersen, No. 55 Chevrolet at AJ Foyt Racing:
“Road America is such an iconic track. It’s the longest track on the schedule. The length of the track makes you feel like you are actually going somewhere during each lap. You are covering a lot of distance and ground. It just feels like a proper track instead of one that is changing each year.”
Callum Ilott, No. 77 Chevrolet at Juncos Hollinger Racing:
“We had a test at Road America last week, which was very productive. We showed good speed, especially on the new track surface. It’s a track which suited our car quite well last year, and so far continues to do the same. We are hoping for a good result this weekend to continue how we performed on the road courses last year. I’m pretty excited to be back, as it’s a great track for racing. It’s a long circuit and has a lot of history to it.”
Agustin Canapino, No. 78 Chevrolet at Juncos Hollinger Racing:
“We have Road America up next, which is one of the best tracks of the season. We come from a really good result in Detroit, so we want to continue our improvement. We will try to battle for a good result and points this weekend. Road America will be a really good opportunity for me to gain further experience as the season progresses.”
CHEVROLET AT ROAD AMERICA (since 2012):
Wins at Road America: 3
2016: Will Power
2018: Josef Newgarden
2022: Josef Newgarden
Pole Awards at Road America: 6
2016: Will Power
2017: Helio Castroneves
2018: Josef Newgarden
2020 (Race 1): Josef Newgarden
2020 (Race 2): Pato O’Ward
2021: Josef Newgarden
Podiums at Road America by Team Chevy: 11
Laps Led at Road America by Team Chevy: 287
2023 CHEVROLET BY THE NUMBERS:
189: NTT INDYCAR SERIES races as V6 engine supplier since 2012 return to INDYCAR.
109: Wins in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES since 2012.
121: Earned poles since 2012.
7: Manufacturer Championships since 2012.
7: Driver/entrant champions since 2012.
12: Indianapolis 500 victories by Chevrolet at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
5: Indianapolis 500 wins by Chevrolet since 2012 in the V6 2.2-liter twin turbo direct injected era.
26: Wins by Will Power since 2012 – all with Chevrolet power – most of any driver with the same manufacturer.
14: Consecutive seasons with at least one win by Will Power, including the past 11 with Chevrolet power.
9: Wins from the pole by Will Power with Chevrolet power since 2012, most by any driver.
44: Pole starts by Will Power since 2012 in a Chevrolet-powered car, most of any driver.
*Will Power’s career total of 68 poles makes him the all-time pole winner in INDYCAR.