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Racing Notebook

Racing Notebook – Tuesday, January 28

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IMSA

PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Scott Dixon wins his 3rd Rolex watch, a recap of Kyle Busch’s Rolex 24 At Daytona as well as some NASCAR, IndyCar and Local Racing News are in today’s Racing Notebook:

SCOTT DIXON WINS THIRD ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA

Five-time NTT IndyCar Series Champion Scott Dixon is the 15th driver in Rolex 24 At Daytona history to win three overall victories in the twice-around-the-clock endurance event.

Dixon picked up his third Rolex watch this wekeend as one of the co-drivers in Wayne Taylor Racing’s winning No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac DPi-V.R (pictured above).  Only six drivers have won more.

Dixon, who drives the No. 9 PNC Bank Honda for Chip Ganassi Racing in the NTT IndyCar Series, claimed overall Rolex 24 victories in 2006 and 2015 with Chip Ganassi’s team, which did not field an entry this year.

“We had times during the race with adversity, but the team was able to rebound with strategy and the driver lineup just worked through it in a calm manner, which is hard to do,” said Dixon.  “I’ve been a part of many 24-hour races in my career, but to come back from the many deficits we had in this race showed the absolute commitment from the team.  I’m really proud to be a part of the team, and I have to thank Chip (Ganassi) for letting me join Wayne (Taylor), Max (Angelelli) and everyone at Konica Minolta.  We’re Winners, that’s all that counts.”

Dixon went from Daytona to Australia to compete in the fames Bathurst 12-hour sports car race.  Dixon will co-drive the No. 76 Aston Martin of R-Motorsport with Jake Dennis and Rick Kelly.

KYLE BUSCH IMPRESSES IN ROLEX 24 AT DAYTONA DEBUT

Kyle Busch participated in his first Rolex 24 At Daytona endurance race this past weekend, getting behind the wheel of AIM Vasser Sullivan Lexus RC F GT3.

Busch completed four driving stints encompassing more than 6-hours behind the wheel.  Busch was fast enough to make up last on track and had the fastest lap in the car up until the last driver change.

“There was a lot going on and a lot to learn and kind of pick-up on and figure out,” said Busch.  “Overall it was good.  We had a lot of fun, I enjoyed it.  Unfortunately we just got a little behind with a brake change, had some issues on the right-front caliper.  I guess that got us a little farther back than we wanted to be.”

Busch’s team owner, 1996 IndyCar Champion Jimmy Vasser, was glad to have the defending NASCAR Cup Series Champion behind the wheel.

“A great team effort,” said Vasser, who drove for Chip Ganassi Racing from 1995-2000.  “With the troubles we had, nobody gave up, everybody pitched in and speaking on Kyle, he impressed.  I’m not sure why he impressed.  He’s a NASCAR Champion.  He’s won more NASCAR races in the modern day than anybody but it takes a lot of confidence and guts to jump into a discipline that he’d never really done before and he did it with ease.  He was really, really impressive.”

KYLE KIRKWOOD JOINING ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT

Kyle Kirkwood, the 2019 Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires Champion is joining the Andretti Autosport Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires team for the 2020 season. The rookie stand-out will drive the No. 28 car for the reigning championship team.

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“We are very excited about the addition of Kyle to our Indy Lights program,” said Michael Andretti, CEO and Chairman, Andretti Autosport. “We’ve followed Kyle’s career from when he started in 2018 with the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship and have been impressed with his success in every race that led to his Indy Pro 2000 Championship last year. As a championship-caliber team, Kyle displays the desire and talent that we look for in our drivers and are excited to see him hit the track for the 2020 Indy Lights season.”

“I am ecstatic that I can now say I am competing in Indy Lights with Andretti Autosport this season,” said Kirkwood. “They have established a winning program in Indy Lights and we plan on carrying that reputation throughout 2020.”

Kirkwood will take to the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, for the Indy Lights season opener March 13 – 15.

ARROW McLAREN SP PARTNERS WITH MISSION FOODS

Arrow McLaren SP and Mission Foods are teaming up in a multi-year partnership in the NTT IndyCar Series.

Mission, the leading manufacturer of the world’s best-selling tortillas, wraps, flatbreads and other food products, will be represented on the team firesuit and crewshirts and the nose, cockpit side, in-car camera view and tire ramp of the car. The Mission brand will also be carried by team drivers Oliver Askew’s and Pato O’Ward’s firesuits and helmets.

“We are very excited and proud to partner with the Arrow McLaren SP team in the NTT IndyCar series and continue our involvement with McLaren Racing,” said Juan Gonzalez, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mission Foods.  “Both brands have a tremendous commitment to quality and the partnership gives us a great opportunity to interact with our consumers in a fun and exciting environment.”

TICKETS ON SALE FOR “FGL FEST” AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY

Tickets are on sale now for FGL Fest, the exciting concert headlined by global music superstars Florida Georgia Line on Saturday, July 4 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The concert takes place during the annual Big Machine Vodka 400 at the Brickyard Powered by Florida Georgia Line race weekend, July 3-5 at IMS. Other artists in the star-studded lineup will be announced soon.

“FGL Fest” is one of the highlights of the exciting, revamped event on Fourth of July weekend.

Tickets are available at IMS.com or by calling the IMS Ticket Office at 317-492-6700. General admission starts at $45, with Front Stage Concert Pit tickets $85 and VIP Concert tickets $195. All tickets include admission to all NASCAR action that day, including the historic inaugural NASCAR Xfinity Series sponsored by Pennzoil on the IMS road course and NASCAR Cup Series practice. Buy tickets now, as prices will increase closer to the show.

GEORGE AND FEREE HONORED AT LERNERVILLE SPEEDWAY BANQUET

Rod George and Ed Ferree are the newest members of the Lernerville Speedway Hall of Fame.  Both were inducted into the HOF this past weekend at Lernerville’s award banquet.

George’s career featured 45-Sprint Car Feature wins along with 2-track Championships.  Ferree scored over 20-Late Model wins and back-to-back Championships in 1985 and 1986.

Racing Notebook

Racing Notebook: Power on INDYCAR GMR Pole; Acura’s quickest at Mid-Ohio and Lernerville winners

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Penske Entertainment

PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Team Penske’s Will Power wins the pole position for Saturday’s NTT INDYCAR SERIES GMR Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway plus a pair of Acura’s lead the way at the Lexus Grand Prix at Mid-Ohio and Fab4 Friday action from Lernerville and more.

Power on GMR Grand Prix Pole Position

  • Team Penske’s Will Power is on the pole position for Saturday’s NTT INDYCAR SERIES GMR Grand Prix on the road course at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Power’s fast lap of 1 minute, 9.7664 seconds was just enough to edge defending Series Champion Alex Palou of Chip Ganassi Racing. Power’s teammate, two-time series champion Josef Newgarden, will start third after a lap of 1:09.8343. Conor Daly earned his best starting spot of the season by qualifying fourth at 1:09.9063 in the No. 20 BitNile Chevrolet. GMR GP Qualifying
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Acura Leads 1st IMSA Practice at Mid-Ohio

  • Filipe Albuquerque led an Acura DPi 1-2 after the first practice session at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Friday.  Tom Blomqvist was second. Earl Bamber was third in the No. 02 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac.  Pipo Derani was fourth in the Whelen Caddy with Sebastian Bourdais rounding out the top 5 in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing Cadillac.  A second practice starts at 9 a.m. ET Saturday on the 2.258-mile, 13-turn road course. Motul Pole Award qualifying streams live on IMSA.com/TVLive at 1:15 p.m. Saturday.  The race airs live on USA Network beginning at 2 p.m. Sunday.

Lernerville Friday Results

  • ‘Willie & Conda McConnell Memorial’ ULMS Feature $3,500 to-win: 1. 22-Gregg Satterlee[8]; 2. 44H-Dave Hess[4]; 3. 1*-Chub Frank[4];  Peoples Natural Gas Feature: 1. 42-Sye Lynch[5]; 2. 2-AJ Flick[9]; 3. 29-Dan Shetler[3]; Diehl Automotive Feature: 1. 61-Dave Murdick[2]; 2. 83-Brian Swartzlander[13]; 3. 11R-Brad Rapp[6]; Millerstown Pic-A-Part Feature: 1. 29-Curtis Bish[4]; 2. 55-Chris Schneider[2]; 3. 45-Todd Weldon[20];
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Racing Notebook

Racing Notebook: GMR Grand Prix Weekend plus Fab4 and ULMS at Lernerville; Ganassi signs Simpson and more.

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Photo: Penske Entertainment

PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Fab 4 Racing is back on track Friday night at Lernerville Speedway but they’ll have company, plus Chip Ganassi signs a new development driver as the NTT INDYCAR SERIES hits the road course at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the GMR Grand Prix and more.

GMR Grand Prix practice and qualifying at Indy

  • The NTT INDYCAR SERIES hits the road course at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for practice and qualifying for Saturday’s GMR Grand Prix.  The 1st practice session runs from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. with a second session from 12:45 p.m. to 1:45 p.m.  Knockout-style qualifying takes place starting at 4:00 p.m.  Ed Carpenter Racing’s Rinus VeeKay is the defending race winner.  Chip Ganassi Racing’s Scott Dixon won the event in 2020.
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Fab 4 plus ULMS Friday at Lernerville

  • Friday at Lernerville Speedway it’s the ‘Willie & Conda McConnell Memorial’ for the ULMS Late Models and Fab4 weekly division racing. Gregg Satterlee leads the ULMS points battle followed by Rick Eckert, Tyler Emory, Jared Miley, and Jason Covert. Satterlee won the tours fist event at Williams Grove Speedway while 2021 Lernerville Speedway champion, Colton Flinner picked up the ULMS checkered flag at Port Royal Speedway. Rick Eckert won the series’ third event at Williams Grove Speedway back in March. Precise Late Models point leaders Jared Miley and Michael Norris will lead the Fab4 contingent against the ULMS regulars in their quest for the $3,500 top prize.

Ganassi signs Kyffin Simpson to development deal

  • Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) on Thursday announced an agreement with Indy Lights driver Kyffin Simpson, signing the 17-year-old to a multi-year development deal. Simpson, a Cayman Islands native, is currently the youngest competitor in the Indy Lights Series, and a driver for Honda Performance Development’s Honda Academy. Simpson, who began racing at nine years old in Barbados, is one of the most promising up-and-coming drivers in motorsports. He made his sports car debut at the 24 Hours of Daytona earlier this year, co-driving the No. 66 Acura NSX GT3 Evo22 in the GTD class, and won the 2021 Formula Regional Americas Championship with seven wins and 13 podiums.

NASCAR completes tire test at Pocono

  • NASCAR Cup Series drivers Christopher Bell, Daniel Suarez and Aric Almirola completed a successful two-day Goodyear Tire test with the Next Gen Cup Series car on Wednesday at Pocono Raceway. The test was done in preparation for the Pocono 400 Cup Series race set for Sunday, July 24. The July 22-24 race weekend will feature four main events in just three days. The ARCA Menards Series kicks off the weekend with an 80-lap main event Friday at 6:30 p.m. ET. NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series and Xfinity Series will run a Saturday doubleheader, with the trucks at Noon ET followed by Xfinity at 5 p.m. The day also will include Cup practice and qualifying beginning at 2 p.m. The weekend culminates with the Pocono 400 Cup Series race on Sunday, beginning at 3 p.m.
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IndyCar

Racing Notebook: Rinus VeeKay on INDYCAR Pole; Chris Buescher on NASCAR Cup Pole and more!

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Penske Entertainment: Joe Skibinski

The Pittsburgh Racing Now Racing Notebook gets you up-to-speed with Saturday’s Qualifying results for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES Honda GP of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park and the NASCAR Cup Series DuraMAX Drydene 400 plus IndyLights qualifying, IndyPro2000, USF 2000 and NASCAR Xfinity.

Rinus VeeKay wins INDYCAR Barber Pole:

  • Ed Carpenter Racing’s Rinus VeeKay is on the pole position for Sunday’s Honda GP of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park.  VeeKay’s fast lap of 1 minute, 6.2507 seconds in the No. 21 SONAX Chevrolet in knockout-style qualifying edged Arrow McLaren SP’s Pato O’Ward for the top spot.  O’Ward will join him on the front row after a best lap of 1:06.4003 in the No. 5 Chevrolet.  Defending NTT INDYCAR SERIES Champion Alex Palou will start third in the No. 10 American Legion Chip Ganassi Racing Honda. INDYCAR Barber Qualifying

Chris Buescher wins NASCAR Cup Series Dover Pole:

  • Roush Fenway Keselowski Racing’s Chris Buescher is on the pole position for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series DuraMAX Drydene 400 at Dover Motor Speedway.  Buescher’s fast lap of 159.207 mph around the concrete Monster Mile was 057-second faster than Denny Hamlin in the No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.  Hendrick Motorsports teammates Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott make up row two. NASCAR Dover Lineup
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Lundqvist wins Indy Lights Barber Pole:

  • Linus Lundqvist is on the pole position for Sunday’s Indy Lights Grand Prix of Alabama.  Lundqvist’s fast lap of 1 minute, 12.5713 seconds in the No. 26 HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing car. Lundqvist’s teammate Benjamin Pedersen starts alongside in the No. 24 Global Racing Group with HMD entry at 1:12.5929, just .0216 of a second off Lundqvist’s time. Indy Lights Barber Lineup

Josh Berry takes Xfinity Series Win at Dover:

  • JR Motorsports (JRM) Josh Berry held off teammate Justin Allgaier to win Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series A-Game 200 at Dover Motor Speedway. Joe Gibbs Racing’s Ty Gibbs was third followed by JRM drivers Noah Gragson and Sam Mayer. NASCAR Xfinity Dover Results

Reece Gold wins Indy Pro 2000 at Barber:

  • Reece Gold of Juncos Hollinger Racing became the third winner in as many rounds of the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires with a dominant victory Saturday afternoon at Barber Motorsports Park. It was the second career win for the 17-year-old from Miami, Fla.  University of Pittsburgh graduate Colin Kaminsky finished second in the No. #27 Slick Locks Tatuus IP-22. “I’m happy to be back up here, it’s been a while. I needed it, the team needed it,” said Kaminsky. Indy Pro 2000 Barber

Myles Rowe snags USF 2000 win at Barber:

  • Myles Rowe started on the pole position and brought home his second consecutive USF 2000 victory, taking the checkered flag Saturday at Barber Motorsports Park.  Billy Frazer finished second and Michael d’Orlando rounded out the podium. USF 2000 Barber
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