Archives for Event Info

Dr. Stephen Olvey to sign “Rapid Response” on May 24 at Indy 500

Dr. Stephen Olvey will be signing his memoir, “Rapid Response, My Inside Story as a Motor Racing Life-Saver,” at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, prior to the Indy 500, on Friday, May 24, at 10:30 a.m., at the Official IndyCar Merchandise Store, located in the Plaza next to the Alley Cafe!     RAPID RESPONSE My inside…

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Motorsports’ Deadliest Era Documentary Lands Distribution

Motorsports’ Deadliest Era Documentary Lands Distribution

Atlas Distribution Company Picks up “Rapid Response” for US Distribution – in Theaters – September 6, 2019
Los Angeles, CA (May 15, 2019): Rapid Response, a full length documentary film exploring the most deadly era of racing, and the safety innovations that revolutionized the sport, has signed with Atlas distribution Company for US distribution.
Rapid Response Co-Director, Michael Miles stated, “We couldn’t be happier to be working with Atlas Distribution Company. Their extraordinary commitment to the project and their consummate professionalism are everything we hoped for in finding a US distributor.”
Rapid Response is a fast-paced documentary that tells the story of medical and safety professionals who refused to accept the high mortality rate among American race car drivers, fundamentally altering the history of motorsports. The movie will open in theaters on September 6, 2019.
In the 1960s, in racing, accidents were commonplace and so were the fatalities. Safety was barely an afterthought. Drivers accepted this as part of the job and continued to take the track, eager to please fans, make money, and prove that they had what it took to survive.
Featuring interviews with motorsports safety pioneers Dr. Stephen Olvey and Dr.Terry Trammell as well as drivers Mario Andretti, Bobby Unser, Al Unser, Parnelli Jones, Rick Mears, and others, Rapid Response highlights the most deadly era of racing and the innovations that led the sport out of the dark ages.
“We’re very proud to be working with Michael Miles and Roger Hinze on the distribution of Rapid Response. Their passion for the real life heroes of motorsports safety is truly inspiring and we’re very much looking forward to the release,” said Harmon Kaslow, President of Atlas Distribution Company.
The film will premiere at Indiana State Museum’s IMAX Theater on Friday, May 24th, two days prior to the 2019 Indy 500.
Watch the Rapid Response trailer: RapidResponseMovie.com.

Dan Wheldon Memorial Pro-Am Karting Challenge set to roll off on Sunday at Newcastle Motorsports Park

If you are in the Indianapolis, Ind. area on Sunday, May 5, don’t forget to make plans to make the 30-minute drive west to the New Castle Motorsports Park to mingle with over a dozen NTT IndyCar Series drivers competing in the Fourth Annual Dan Wheldon Memorial Pro-Am Karting Race.

Admission for fans to this fundraiser is FREE!!!

Corporate sponsored teams with one professional driver will be raising money for the Dan Wheldon Foundation. The Dan Wheldon Foundation has provided over $187,000 to establish The Sue Wheldon Fund that supports Alzheimer’s research (a cause near and dear to Dan), and an additional $150,000 has been raised to support IndyCar related needs with recipients such as the Wilson Children’s Fund.

Gate open to the public at 9 a.m. with practice beginning at 11 a.m and qualifying at 12:30 p.m. The 2-hour race with NTT IndyCar Series driver contesting the last stint gets the green flag at 1:45 p.m.

The winning team will receive specially designed rings from Jostens, who is the Official Jeweler of INDYCAR as well as a Ritmo Mundo watch, in a victory lane celebration at 4 p.m.

The event concludes with a driver autograph session at 4:30 p.m.

Corporate Partners and Teams expected to participate include:

  • Dan Wheldon Foundation – Ed Carpenter
  • Dan Wheldon Foundation – Gabby Chaves
  • IMS / INDYCAR – Conor Daly
  • Jonathan Byrd Racing – James Davison
  • PNC Bank / NTT Data – Scott Dixon
  • Machine Of Awesome – Marcus Ericsson
  • Firestone – Colton Herta
  • Dan Wheldon Foundation – James Hinchcliffe
  • Big Machine Records – Tony Kanaan
  • Dan Wheldon Foundation – Pippa Mann
  • Big Machine Vodka – Josef Newgarden
  • Novitec – Felix Rosenqvist
  • Dan Wheldon Foundation – Alexander Rossi
  • Dan Wheldon Foundation – Spencer Pigot

30 for 30 Documentary on Motorsports Pioneer Janet Guthrie to Premiere May 28 on ESPN

ESPN Films’ award-winning 30 for 30 series continues on May 28 with the documentary “Qualified” at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN. Directed by Jenna Ricker (“Ben’s Plan,” “The American Side”) with producers Caroline Waterlow and Nina Krstic (“O.J.: Made in America”) and Greg Stuhr (“The American Side”), “Qualified” chronicles the roadblocks and hardships Janet Guthrie overcame in becoming the first woman ever to compete in both the Indianapolis 500 and the Daytona 500 – and eventually, an auto racing legend. Watch a clip

In 1977, a 39-year-old aerospace engineer attempted to qualify for the world’s most famous race, the Indianapolis 500. Overcoming sexism, skepticism, and subpar equipment, Janet Guthrie shocked the racing world when the reluctant feminist-turned-trailblazer became the first woman to earn a place on the starting grid at Indy, among 33 of the world’s greatest drivers. But just as Guthrie’s career should have rocketed forward, it suddenly, inexplicably stalled. “Qualified” chronicles the mercurial rise of this barrier-breaking auto racer and her equally rapid decline. What Janet Guthrie accomplished in the male bastion of mid-70s American motorsports, stands as a testament to one woman’s determination and skill – the kind too often relegated to the margins of history.

With unprecedented access to the era’s local television coverage, network broadcasts, rarely seen promotional films, home movies, and private photo and film collections, the film is unique in that it is comprised almost entirely of archival material. Immersing audiences in the wildly colorful and violently dangerous world of 1970s auto racing, the film is punctuated by period commentary and interviews from Jim McKay, Jackie Stewart, and Howard Cosell. The contemporary interviews provide ‘eyewitness’ accounts, and feature over a dozen personalities who were there, from Guthrie’s crew members to her competitors, such as legendary racers A.J. Foyt and Johnny Rutherford, along with Guthrie’s own in-depth, candid, and ultimately revealing account.

“In the late 70’s Janet Guthrie was a name you heard on evening broadcasts and read about in your daily newspaper,” said Ricker. “The saturated film stock and cinematography of that era is so evocative and visceral, it seemed the perfect way to re-introduce Janet to today’s audience. Shaping her story predominantly through archival footage reminds our viewer how present she was in the zeitgeist while placing them at the epicenter of macho 70’s auto racing.”

“Qualified” premiered at the 2019 South by Southwest Film Festival. The film is producer Waterlow’s first since Academy Award-winning “O.J.: Made in America.”

 

Kart4Kids Pro-Am raises funds, smiles for children’s hospital

By Tony DiZinno and Steve Wittich The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg weekend is quickly growing its overall portfolio beyond just the on-track activity. And the Wednesday before the 2018 edition was no exception, with a pair of go-kart races kicking off this year’s festivities. The “Mayor’s Challenge” go-kart race kicked off festivities during…

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Bourdais falls just short at Gateway… in his quest for the Ed Jones Cup at Gateway Fun Park – Zelsnik wins in a playoff

By Steve Wittich

If a Thursday night Dale Coyne Racing team-building event is any indication of things to come this weekend, Sebastien Bourdais has not lost his competitive streak during his nine-race layoff.

After 18 grueling holes on the challenging North Course at Gateway Fun Park, Bourdais and Larry Zelesnik, the team’s sub-assembly specialist, found themselves tied at the top of the Dale Coyne Racing First Annual Mini-Golf Classic leaderboard.

Suggestions of an air hockey match, a Skee-Ball tournament, and a round of Pop-A-Shot to determine the winner of the inaugural Ed Jones Cup were rejected by tournament organizer Karina Redmond, and despite the encroaching darkness, Zelesnkik and Bourdais would decide this battle in a sudden death playoff on the links.

The Ed Jones Cup, what the Dale Coyne Racing crew was playing for. (Photo – Steve Wittich)

After the playoff was announced, a throng of onlookers, who were clearly in Zelesnik’s camp, quickly surrounded the difficult first hole.

Bourdais chose to go first, his deftly struck tee-shot was straight and true, and his ball travelled up and over a hill directly towards the cup. The driver’s ball travelled directly over the cup, bounced off the back wall and tracked back towards the hole. Just as Bourdais began to raise his arms as it looked like he’d score a coveted hole-in-one, his ball stopped short.

With the door flung wide-open for a potential first-hole victory, Zelesnik confidently addressed his ball and smoothly stroked his putt towards the cup. Similar to Bourdais’ shot before him, Zelesnik’s ball tracked towards the hole, bouncing over the cup, and bouncing off the back wall. Unlike Bourdais’ shot, Zelesnik’s ball travelled the entire distance to the cup, dropping into the hole as the crowd cheered loudly.

Ed Jones presents the Ed Jones Cup to Larry Zelesnik (photo – Karina Redmond)

The genesis of the team building event was a Mid-Ohio mini golf round between Jones and his engineers Michael Cannon and Michael Armbrester. Jones won, but his timing stand wasn’t convinced about legitimacy of the victory, and called for a rematch.

Public Relations guru Redmond quickly saw an opportunity for a night of team fun and bonding and organized the event for this weekend.

“It’s good to get to get the crew out together where they are doing something that takes their minds off of their jobs, and everybody can just have a good time together,” explained team manager Darren Crouser. “It’s helpful, and takes the pressure off of everybody with all the guys getting to hang out with him (Bourdais) again.”

“You saw all of the team there, and it was good to get together with everybody and have a good time,” agreed Bourdais. “We’re an easy going team. We have good spirit with everybody. We weren’t being very serious about it… well, somebody got very serious about it. (Bourdais grins, and smiles at Zelesnik.)”

Sebastien Bourdais celebrates a hole-in-one. (Photo – Steve Wittich)

After the round, the Dale Coyne Racing crew explored the arcade, and somewhat predictably ended up playing the games you might have expected them to gravitate towards. Sixty-something spotter and former Indy car driver Pancho Carter quickly found the oldest game in joint, Skee-Ball. Roy Wilkerson, a Hoosier born and bred car chief, not surprisingly made his way to the Pop-A-Shot.  Forty-something Craig Hampson, Bourdais’ race engineer, made a bee-line to pump-quarters into the Galaga machine. Finally, everybody under the age of 35 looked around at the arcade games with confusion, amazed that people actually left their houses to play the games they could play on their TV.

Plans are already afoot for the a bigger and better second annual tournament at the same place next year.

 

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Indianapolis 500 Goes Green Sunday on ABC for 53rd Consecutive Year

Indianapolis 500 Goes Green Sunday on ABC for 53rd Consecutive Year

ESPN’s Production Includes First In-Race Visor Cam; ESPN App Second-Screen Experience

Continuing a Memorial Day weekend tradition that dates back to 1965, ABC will televise the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500-Mile Race on Sunday, May 28.

The telecast of the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” airing on ABC for the 53rd consecutive year, begins with a pre-race show at 11 a.m. ET and then polesitter Scott Dixon will lead the field of 33 to the green flag at 12:17 p.m. The race telecast of the premier event of the Verizon IndyCar Series is presented by Firestone.

Allen Bestwick will call the race, joined in the booth for analysis by former series drivers Scott Goodyearand Eddie Cheever. The announcer team also will include pit reporters Jon Beekhuis, Rick DeBruhl andDr. Jerry Punch. ESPN SportsCenter anchor Lindsay Czarniak will host the pre-race show from the Speedway’s iconic Pagoda, and SportsCenter reporter Marty Smith will join the pre-race show and take viewers inside some of the activities going on around the track.

ABC and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway have one of the longest-running active relationships between a network and a sporting event, with the event first airing on ABC’s Wide World of Sports in 1965.

Visor Cam Goes Live in Telecast

Annually one of ESPN’s largest and most complex television productions, the Indianapolis 500 telecast will include 96 cameras and will mark the first live usage of “Visor Cam,” an innovation introduced on ABC’s IndyCar telecasts earlier this year. A tiny camera mounted to the helmets of drivers Graham Rahal and Josef Newgarden, Visor Cam will provide a unique view from the perspective of the driver and a true portrayal of how it feels to be inside the car, allowing fans to see how G forces move the driver’s head and body around and how wind and bumps affect the car. Previously, Visor Cam was only used during practice sessions.

Also for the first time in the Indianapolis 500 telecast, ESPN will enhance the viewing experience for fans with “ESPN Race Strategist,” a predictive analytics innovation introduced earlier this year to bring viewers closer to the strategy that often determines race winners. Designed for ESPN by Pit Rho, a technology company focused on the development of custom, predictive analytics solutions for the motorsports industry, the system supplements the scoring tickers and graphics that race fans are accustomed to with additional information related to race strategy such as tire compound choices and laps on tires, fuel windows and optimal laps for pitting, as well as predictive analysis of positions, lap time falloff and probability of cautions.

Three onboard cameras per car will be in 12 of the 33 cars competing in the race while the cars of Rahal and Newgarden will have four each with the addition of Visor Cam. Viewers of the ABC telecast will have the option of a second screen experience through a choice of live streaming video from the onboard cameras on the ESPN app.

In addition to Rahal and Newgarden, drivers carrying onboard cameras during the race will be Dixon, defending 500 winner Alexander Rossi and the cars of Tony Kanaan, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Marco Andretti, James Hinchcliffe, Will Power, Gabby Chaves, Fernando Alonso, James Davison, Ed Carpenter and Helio Castroneves. Castroneves will be trying to become only the fourth driver to win the race four times.

The camera count also will include the use of two SSMO (Super Slow Motion) cameras, an aerial camera located in a helicopter and four robotic cameras with overhead views of the pits. The production will be supported by 150 technical crew members and will include 208 microphones, 19 EVS machines, nine mobile units and four uplinks transmitting 17 satellite paths. Some 170,000 feet of fiber cable will connect the equipment.

ESPN’s production of the race telecast will be led by senior coordinating producer Amy Rosenfeld and coordinating producer Kate Jackson, with Jim Gaiero producing and Bruce Watson directing. Jackson will produce the pre-race show with Chip Dean directing.

Features in Indy 500 Coverage

The opening tease for the telecast is INDY 101, an insider’s guide that proves why the Indy 500 is the greatest spectacle in racing, dispelling the myths and shining a light on the skill, endurance, brain power, state of the art engineering and speed that goes into building a champion.

Among the features that will air during the pre-race show or in ESPN SportsCenter’s Indianapolis 500 coverage:

  • Tony Kanaan Race Morning All-Access — one of the most popular drivers in the Verizon IndyCar Series for the past 20 years, Kanaan will show what his race morning is like before the Indianapolis 500. For the first time ever before the big race, a driver will allow a camera on him throughout the morning, giving viewers unprecedented access to what a driver goes through before a race.
  • Alexander Rossi Looks Back — Winning an IndyCar race is a big deal. Winning at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the most famous track in all of motorsports, is the ultimate achievement. Alexander Rossi accomplished that as a rookie at the 100th Indianapolis 500. Viewers will see how Rossi overcame insurmountable odds to pull of this nearly impossible feat one year ago.
  • Following Fernando Alonso – viewers will go behind the scenes as two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso switches over to race in the Indy 500. Included will be highlights from Alonso’s practice laps and qualifying and a look at the media attention surrounding one of the most decorated drivers in F1 history.
  • James Hinchcliffe Undercover –driver James Hinchcliffe went undercover as head of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum. “Jim” welcomed fans into the museum, enforced museum rules and helped guest get their photo taken in an IndyCar all while expressing his love for all things Indy 500. Fans went from confused to delighted as he revealed himself and stuck around for photos and autographs.
  • How Big? How Fast? – Questions of how big and fast the Indianapolis Motor Speedway really is and will be answered in this feature which takes the unique approach of providing visual comparisons between the track and some of the most iconic buildings in the world by placing those structures in the Speedway’s infield, providing context of both size and speed.

The Indianapolis 500 on Other ESPN Platforms

SportsCenter — Editions of SportsCenter Friday-Sunday will carry reports from the Speedway, including segments with anchor Lindsay Czarniak and reporterMarty Smith.  After the race, the winner will have an interview with SportsCenter, and Czarniak will have a SportsCenter Sunday Conversation with the winner that will air in the evening editions of the program. Reporter Ryan McGee also will contribute to the SportsCenter coverage from Indy. Also, ESPN’s Julie Foudy will highlight some of the women involved in the Indianapolis 500 for a feature that will air on SportsCenter. James Hinfcliffe, the 2016 Indy 500 polesitter, was scheduled to visit ESPN on Tuesday, May 23, to appear on several editions of SportsCenter and other ESPN platforms.

 

ESPN.com will have on-site coverage of the Indy 500 with ESPN F1 writer Nate Saunders, motorsports editor K. Lee Davis and ESPN the Magazine senior writer Ryan McGee. The site has already been previewing and preparing for the event with news and video from the Speedway since the track opened for Month of May activities.

The ESPN App – This year, ABC’s telecast of the Indianapolis 500 also will be streaming live on the ESPN app. Race fans will also have the option of a second-screen experience on the ESPN app during the Indy 500 telecast with a selection of streaming video from onboard cameras. Fourteen drivers in the race will be carrying onboard cameras.

ESPN International — In addition to television in the United States on ABC, ESPN also distributes Verizon IndyCar Series race telecasts through a combination of ESPN networks and syndication to more than 170 countries and 100 million homes. In addition, U.S. troops serving overseas and on Navy vessels around the world can watch live via a broadcast agreement between ESPN and the American Forces Network. 

ESPN Player — Again this year, ESPN Player is bringing fans across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (excluding the UK, France and Italy) live and on-demand coverage of the Verizon IndyCar Series season as a channel on the digital subscription service. ESPN Player is available on Mac, PC, iPad and Samsung Smart TVs, with high quality streaming on all devices. Information is available at ESPNPlayer.com.

ESPN The MagazineESPN The Magazine’s newest issue, which went on newsstands May 19, previews the Indianapolis 500. Senior writer Ryan McGeecatches up with Alexander Rossi, who has grown into the title forever attached to his name: Indianapolis 500 winner.

ESPN Classic started helping fans ready for the Indy 500 with airings of classic Indy 500 races throughout the week of the race. The airings began Monday, May 22, at 6 a.m. with the 1979 race won by Rick Mears and will continue all day and night through Friday, May 27, at 8 p.m

ABC Television – ABC’s Good Morning America Weekend will air segments on the Indianapolis 500 with ABC News senior meteorologist Rob Marciano reporting from Indianapolis Motor Speedway on both Saturday and Sunday. The program airs at 8 a.m. ET.

“Month Of May” event info – Brews, grub and IndyCar photos with a personality – Kate Shoup’s photo exhibit at Flat12 Bierwerks

By Steve Wittich

Satisfying suds, great grub, surrounded by IndyCar photos with a presence. If that sounds like the perfect way to spend some post-track free time, then make sure you visit Kate Shoup’s IndyCar photograph exhibit at Flat12 Beirworks.

If you are a regular at Verizon IndyCar Series races, and especially the Indianapolis 500, Kate Shoup, her ubiquitous silk scarf, vintage Safety Patrol hat and camera always at the ready, will most likely be a familiar face. During a race, you’ll most likely find her hanging around the pit box of Sebastien Bourdais. Shop’s boyfriend, Olivier Boisson, has worked as an engineer for the fellow Frenchman for the past four years, moving with the four-time Indy car champion from KV Racing Technology to Dale Coyne Racing during the off-season.

During the rest of the race-weekend, you can find Shoup and her camera capturing the personalities of the drivers, crew, and other characters of the Verizon IndyCar Series. Shoup, who works as a photographer for Indianapolis Monthy Magazine during the three weeks of track activity at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, has an incredible talent of capturing her subjects just at that moment that their physche is exposed, granting us a brief glimpse into what our heroes are thinking.

Shoup, who’s “day job” includes writing and editing books, will also be taking over the INDYCAR Fast Six: What’s Trending In @IndyCar column for the rest of May. Here is the first installment: INDYCAR FAST SIX: WHAT’S TRENDING IN @INDYCAR FROM APRIL 26-MAY 2

You can follow Kate on Twitter or Instagram

The exhibit’s home, Flat12 Bierworks, one of the earlier craft breweries to pop up in Indianapolis, opened the doors of their brewery, located just east of downtown in the Holy Cross neighborhood in 2010. Unlike many other craft brewers, Flat 12 doesn’t adhere to only one style of beer. Upside Down Blonde Ale (a 4.5%, 18 IBU American Pale Ale), Walkabout Pale-Ale (a 5.3% – 40 IBU tradition IPA), Half Cyle India Pale Ale (a 6.4% – 104 IBU is an super-hoppy Pale Ale), and Pogue’s Run Porter (a 5.5, 34 IBU English Porter that my Grandma Rosina would have loved), are the “core four” that are always available.

A revolving cast of seasonal beers joins the core four, including but not limited to:

  • Hinchtown Hammerdown – A Pilsner style lager (4.8% – 27 IBU) that is produced every spring around the “Greatest Spectacle In Racing” and in collaboration with James Hinchcliffe.
  • Elwood Hoppy Wheat – A unique hopped wheat beer (5.2% – 42 IBU)
  • Rigby Amber Saison – a traditional Belgian farmhouse brew made with touch of red wheat to give a slightly spicy finish (5.8% – 23 IBU)

Whether you just need a snack while enjoying your beer, or are hungry for a full meal, a pair of Philly area transplants have you covered at Hoagies and Hops.

The Dutch Family Platter (Pennsylvania Dutch Ring Bologna, Seltzers Lebanon Bologna, Muenster, Red Beet Pickled Egg, Bread, Salted Butter, House Whole Grain Pogue’s Run Porter Mustard) is a great place to get started.

If you are in the mood for a traditional Italian Philly hoagie, order the Hog Island, or dare to be different and try one the unique creations like the Keystone (London Broil, provolone, horseradish and mayo) or Zern’s (ring bologna, red beet pickled egg, Muenster, porter mustard and mayo). Also available are a variety of cheesesteak sandwiches, including one with Cheez Whiz.

So – if you are finding yourself thirsty for a Hinchtown Hamemerdown, hungry for some traditional Philly grub, or both, and want to be surrounded by the familiar faces of the IndyCar stars for a few hours, or if you are looking to purchase a one of Shoup’s photographs of your favorite driver, make the trip just east of downtown Indianapolis, Ind. to 412 N. Dorman Street. Shoup’s exhibit runs from now until the end of May.

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Rolex 24 at DAYTONA preview with an IndyCar focus

For the 55th time the motorsports world turns to Daytona International Speedway and it’s 3.56 mile road course to begin the racing season. The twice around the clock Rolex 24 at DAYTONA begins on Saturday, January 28th at 2pm and ends 24 hours later at 2pm on Sunday, January 29th.

The TV Schedule is a follows:

Saturday, January 28th

  • 2pm – 5pm — Fox (network)
  • 5pm – 10pm — Fox Sports 1 (cable)
  • 11pm – midnight — Fox Sports 2 (cable)

Sunday, January 29th

  • midnight – 12:30pm – Fox Sports 2 (cable)
  • 12:30pm – 3pm – Fox Sports 1 (cable)

TSO does have a reporter on site this weekend and will be providing frequent updates on TSOLadder.com and to our subscribers here at TrackSideOnline.com. Here are some brief previews of each class.


Prototype

The top-level class, Prototype, will feature a dozen brand new cars that will be competing in anger for the first first time.. The venerable Daytona Prototype, which has been a Rolex 24 at DAYTONA staple since 2003, has been retired. For 2017 the Prototype class will feature seven Daytona Prototype international (DPi) entries, and five Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) LM P2 entries.

So what is the difference? 

All twelve entries begin with one of four approved chassis manufactures (Dallara, Onroak Automotive, ORECA or Riley/Multimatic), but that is where the similarities end. The DPi entries all feature unique engines and bodywork supplied by an auto-maker, while the LM P2 entries feature bodywork from the chassis manufacture and a common specification power plant.

The DPi entries are spread among Cadillac (3), Mazda (2) and Nisaan (2). The LM P2 entries are spread between: ORECA (3), Liger (1) and Riley/Multimatic (1).

The five LM P2 entries feature a common specification Gibson 4.2L 90 degree V8 power plant, while the three manufactures are utilizing a diverse array of engines in their DPi entries. The Cadillac entries are powered by a 6.2L naturally aspirated V8, the Mazda entries feature a 2.0L single turbo-charged four cylinder, while the Nissan entries have split the difference and gone with a 3.8L V6 that is features twin-turbo induction. All engines produce somewhere in the range of 600HP.

All cars run on Continental Tires.

Most entries feature a full complement of professional drivers.

There are three current Verizon IndyCar Series drivers entered in the top class.

RC Enerson will be making his Rolex 24 at DAYTONA debut at the wheel of the No. 52 PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports Ligier/Gibson.

James Hinchcliffe is making his sixth trip to Daytona, Florida for the Rolex 24 at DAYTONA, and for the fifth straight year the Canadian will be part of a Mazda backed factory effort. Hinchcliffe, who’s best previous finish in the event was 16th, will be at the wheel of the No. 70 Machine Grey Mazda DPi.

Spencer Pigot will be making his third Rolex 24 at DAYTONA start (all of them in Mazda factory efforts), and will be behind the wheel of the No. 55 Soul Red Mazda DPi.

Former IndyCar drivers to watch for in the class are:

  • Michael Conway (No. 31 Whelen Engineering Racing Cadillac DPi)
  • Ryan Dalziel (No. 2 Tequila Patron ESM Nissan DPi)
  • Christian Fittipaldi (No. 5 Mustang Sampling Racing Cadillac DPi)
  • Neil Jani (No. 13 Rebellion Racing ORECA LM P2)
  • Scott Sharp (No. 2 Tequila Patron ESM Nissan DPi)

Prototype Challenge

There are a total of five entries in the common specification Prototype Challenge (PC) class. All cars utilize an ORECA FLM09 chassis that is powered by a General Motors derived naturally aspirated 6.2L V8, and all are shod with identical Continental Tires. The drivers are a mix of professionals and amateurs.

The lone Verizon IndyCar Series driver in this class is Conor Daly, who was a late addition to the No. 88 Starworks Motorsports entry. Daly, who tested his A.J. Foyt Racing/ABC Supply No. 4 Chevrolet at Sebring Raceway earlier this week will be making his second Rolex 24 at DAYTONA appearance. The Noblesville, Indiana natives lone start also came in the Prototype Challenge class in 2014.

Former IndyCar drivers to watch for in the class are:

  • Buddy Rice (No. 20 BAR1 Motorsports)

GT Le Mans (GTLM)

Often the most competitive class during the Rolex 24 at DAYTONA (the race for the class win was decided by only 0.034 of a second in 2016), the GTLM class features eleven factory or heavily factory backed cars. Fighting for bragging rights in 2017 will be: two Chevrolet Corvettes, two BMW M6s, one Ferrari 488, four Ford GTs, and two Porsche 911s. All entries run on entry specific Michelin rubber and are piloted by 100% professional driver line-ups.

The class will feature three Verizon IndyCar Series drivers and two Verizon IndyCar Series teams.

The two BMW M6s are entered by Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, who are stating their ninth season as the U.S. factory backed squad for the Munich, Germany based manufacturer.

For the second straight year, Chip Ganassi Racing will be in charge of the factory Ford GT program and will have four entries vying for the Rolex 24 at DAYTONA GTLM title. At the wheel of three of those entries will be three familiar names for IndyCar fans.

2014 Rolex 24 at DAYTONA champion Sebastien Bourdais will be making his eighth start in the event, but only his second start in GT machinery. The Dale Coyne Racing driver was also part of the Ford GT squad last year at Daytona and Le Mans (were he won class honors).

Scott Dixon, who has two Rolex DAYTONA champion watches (2006 and 2015) will be making his 15th consecutive appearance with Chip Ganassi Racing in the twice-around the clock race. The first fourteen of the Kiwi’s starts at Daytona came at the wheel of a prototype, but Dixon was part of the Ford GT program in 2016, so the learning curve should be quite shallow.

Despite beginning his 23rd season of racing in the United States, Tony Kanaan will be making only his sixth Rolex 24 at DAYTONA appearance. Kanaan, who has a Rolex for winning the 2015 event with Chip Ganassi Racing, will be making his first Ford GT start.

Former IndyCar drivers to watch for in the class are:

  • Ryan Briscoe (Ford Chip Ganassi Racing No. 67 Ford GT)
  • Jan Magnussen (Corvette Racing No. 3 Corvette C7.R)

GT Daytona (GTD)

With 27 entries, the GTD class is the largest of the four classes in the 2017 Rolex 24 at DAYTONA field. The GT3 based class has nine different manufacturers represented with the following different race cars entered: Acura NSX (2), Aston Martin Vantage (1), Audi R8 LMS (3), BMW M6 (1), Ferrari 488 (2), Lamborghini Huracan (8), Lexus RCF (2), Mercedes AMG (3), Porsche 911 (5).

The class features two full-time Verizon IndyCar Series and three drivers who made at least one appearance in 2016.

An overall Rolex 24 at DAYTONA winner with Chip Ganassi Racing in 2011, Graham Rahal will be making his ninth start in the season opening event. The Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing driver will be sharing the No. 93 Michael Shank Racing w/ Curb-Agajanian Acura NSX, and is no stranger to GT equipment, making his last three DAYTONA starts at the wheel of a GTLM BMW entered by Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.

Ryan Hunter-Reay, who will join Rahal piloting a Acrua NSX for Michael Shank Racing w/ Curb-Agajanian (No. 86) has a total of three overall and four class podiums in ten previous starts.

Townsend Bell, who made one Verizon IndyCar Series start in the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 in 2016, will be making his fourth Rolex 24 at DAYTONA start. Bell, who won his class at the 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans also won his class at Daytona in 2014.

Jack Hawksworth and Sage Karam, two of the four full-time drivers for the 3GT Racing run Lexus RCF program, will both be making their third start in the Rolex 24 at DAYTONA. It will both drivers first attempt in GT equipment.

Former IndyCar drivers to watch for in the class are:

  • Jan Heylen (No. 991 TRG Porsche 911)
  • Katherine Legge (No. 93 Michael Shank Racing w/ Curb-Agajanian Acura NSX)
  • Scott Pruett (No. 14 3GT Racing Lexus RCF)
  • Tristan Vautier (No. 75 SunEnergy1 Racing Mercedes AMG)

Links:

Rev, presented by Fifth Third Bank, announces Verizon IndyCar Series driver Josef Newgarden as 2017 honorary chair; Milktooth joins restaurant lineup

TSO Notes:

  • Today’s announcement that Josef Newgarden would serve as the 2017 honorary chair of Rev, presented by Fifth Third Bank took place at milktooth, a breakfast and brunch diner located in the Fletcher Place neighborhood of Indianapolis, Indiana. 

The Fletcher Place diner, milktooth, provided the perfect setting to kick off the 2017 edition Rev, presented by Fifth Third Bank. (Photo Courtesy of IndyCar)= – Chris Owen)

  • Recently rated as one of the best restaurants in the world, milktooth is headed by chef Jonathan Brooks, who will be pairing with Newgarden to create a driver inspired dish for Rev on May 6, 2017. For today’s announcement, Brooks was inspired by Newgarden’s hometown of Nashville, Tennessee to utilize a smoked pork shoulder in his pork/jalapeño/cheese nachos. Yes, I tried them, and yes they were fantastic. If you live in the Indianapolis area, or are visiting, I highly recommend a visit to milktooth. Note: they have the BEST drip coffee in Indianapolis. 

2017 honorary chair of Rev, Josef Newgarden looks on as milktooth chef Johnathan Brooks puts the finishing touches on the smoked pork nachos. (Photo Courtesy of IndyCar – Chris Owen)

  • Rev is the main fundraiser for the Methodist Health Foundation, and in 2016, the annual “Month of May” kick-off event raised $550,000, a 425% increase over the inaugural event. The fundraising goal for 2017 is $600,000.
  • The event sold-out of their 3000 tickets in March last year, and sold all of their VIP Tickets for 2017 in four hours, so if you are planning on attending, buy your tickets now –> Rev, Presented by Fifth Third Bank tickets 
  • A total of 29 Verizon IndyCar Series drivers, legends of the Indianapolis 500 and Mazda Road To Indy presented by Cooper Tire drivers took part in the 2016 event . The full list included: Neil Alberico, Mikhail Aleshin, Marco Andretti, Sebastien Bourdais, Geoff Brabham, Matthew Brabham, Gabby Chaves, Max Chilton, Bryan Clauson, Conor Daly, Scott Dixon, Jack Hawksworth, James Hinchcliffe, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Kyle Kaiser, Sage Karam, Tony Kanaan, Dalton Kellett, Charlie Kimball, Pippa Mann, Juan Montoya, Carlos Munoz, Simon Pagenaud, Spencer Pigot, Will Power, Graham Rahal, Alexander Rossi, Takuma Sato, and Zach Veach.

Current Verizon IndyCar Series champion Simon Pagenaud was one many Verizon IndyCar Series drivers who showed off their culinary talents at Rev 2016. (Photo Courtesy of IndyCar – Chris Jones)

  • In 2016, the event had a total of 62 eateries and food service groups participate. The full list included: Acosta Food Service, AdvancePierre Foods, Arni’s Restaurant, Blondie’s Cookies, Bluebeard, Cerulean, Circle City Soups, Circle City Sweets, Clabber Girl, Copper Moon Coffee, Delicia, Flemings Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar, Fogo de Chao, Food Guys Catering Co., Gates Catering, Georgia Reese’s Southern Table and Bar, GiGi’s Cupcakes, Goose the Market/Smoking Goose, Gordon Food Service, Harry and Izzy’s, Hops and Fire,  Indiana University Health Center – Nutrition Services, Jacks, Donuts, JW Marriott Indianapolis, Just Pop In!, La Margarita Restaurant, Levy Restaurants at IMS, Libertine Liquor Bar, Lucky Louie’s Sausage and Hot Dogs, Matteo’s Ristorante Italiano, McFarling Foods, Mesh On Mash, Mimi Blue Meatballs, Monon Food Company, Morton’s The Steakhouse, Mo’s… A Place For Steaks, Ocean Prime, Peterson’s Restaurant, Plow and Anchor, Prime 47, Revery, Rook, Sangiovese Ristorante, Sangrito Saloon, Second Helpings, Smarter Chocolate. And Then Some, Some Guys Pizza, Spice Box, St. Elmo Steakhouse, The Cake Bake Shop, The Chef’s Academy at Harrison College, The Core Group, The District Tap, The North End Barbecue and Moonshine/Late Harvest Kitchen, The Oceanaire Seafood Room, The Willows on Westfield, Tilly’s Tea Room, Tinker Street, Vanilla Bean Bakery, Vida, Union 50, US Foods, and Waypoint, 

Check out last year’s event:

Event Release:

Rev, presented by Fifth Third Bank, announces Verizon IndyCar Series driver Josef Newgarden as 2017 honorary chair; Milktooth joins restaurant lineup.

INDIANAPOLIS–Jan. 17, 2017–Methodist Health Foundation announces Verizon IndyCar Series driver Josef Newgardenas the Rev 2017 honorary chair, for the fourth annual event taking place May 6 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
“This is our main fundraiser which also serves to kick off the Month of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway,” said Methodist Health Foundation Chief Development Officer Sally McGuffey.

Rev has grown to become one of the city’s premier foodie events, with cuisine inspired by drivers and Indy’s top chefs,” said McGuffey. “The event’s mission is to raise funds and awareness for Indiana University Health statewide trauma programs, including those that provide care for drivers and patrons at the Indiana University Health Emergency Medical Center of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”

In his sixth Verizon IndyCar Series season, Newgarden posted impressive on-track results in 2016, finishing fourth in the championship with a win, six top-five and 11 top-10 finishes. For the upcoming 2017 season, Newgarden joins Team Penske behind the wheel of the No. 2 Chevrolet.

“It’s a great honor to be partner with Rev this year for a cause that does so much for the community of Indianapolis and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway,” said Newgarden. “The growth of this event in such a short time is a testament to the hard work everyone puts in to support Methodist Health Foundation. I’m really looking forward to helping the event continue the upward trend.”

The announcement introducing Newgarden as the honorary chair and driver spokesperson was made at Milktooth, an Indianapolis jewel owned by chef Jonathan Brooks, who is receiving national accolades for his culinary creations.

Ranked by Bonappetit.com in its top-10 best restaurants in the country, Milktooth joins Rev as part of the 2017 restaurant lineup participating in the May charity event, which showcases the Indianapolis culinary scene, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the INDYCAR drivers who race at IMS in the INDYCAR Grand Prix and Indianapolis 500.

Rev draws 3,000 to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to mingle with INDYCAR drivers and taste, dance to live music and enjoy small bites made and donated by more than 60 Indianapolis restaurants, who create driver-inspired dishes. Premiere tickets for the May 6 event are available for $300 each at RevIndy.org; VIP tickets are sold out.

During the announcement, Newgarden and Brooks presented a dish they collaborated on to local media and dignitaries, including IndyHub executive director Molly Chavers, who is serving as Rev 2017 co-chair along with Indianapolis Power & Light Company (IPL) president and CEO, Rafael Sanchez, and Visit Indy Senior Vice President Chris Gahl. Also on hand to taste Brooks’ creation were Rook owner and Chef Carlos Salzar and Bluebeard owner and Chef Abbi Merriss, who are also creating dishes inspired by Newgarden for Rev.

Gahl said, “Indy’s chefs and our food scene as a whole continues to whet the appetite of media nationwide, with Conde Nast Traveler declaring Indy to be the most underrated food city in the U.S. and authority Zagat proclaiming Indy to be one of the hottest food cities in the nation. Revcelebrates Indy’s nationally recognized food scene with a sampling of the best restaurants in the city.”

Indianapolis Motor Speedway President Doug Boles is thrilled to see the event come back to the track.

“We are excited to be hosting Rev again in 2017, which is now in its fourth year at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway,” said Boles. “The relationship of IU Health and Methodist Health Foundation with IMS is over 100 years old and great events likeRev help make our partnership stronger than ever, while ensuring that both drivers and fans continue to receive top-notch care. Josef is a fantastic addition to this year’s Rev team and will ensure the event continues to grow and serve as an excellent Month of May kickoff.”

The fantastic atmosphere at Rev 2016 (Photo Courtesy of IndyCar- Chris Owen)

 

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