Like a good Scout, Scott Lagasse does a great deed, even though illness knocked him out of race


You can’t help but feel for race car driver Scott Lagasse Jr., who leading up to last Saturday’s season-ending Nationwide Series race, experienced a great high and subsequent frustrating low.

The St. Augustine, Florida native was all set to make his much-anticipated debut for Richard Childress Racing in the Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Unfortunately, Lagasse came down with a case of food poisoning the same day he was supposed to be behind the wheel of the No. 33 Alert Today Florida / Boy Scouts of America Chevrolet Camaro and was forced to miss the race later that day.

Sprint Cup veteran Paul Menard filled in for Lagasse and did an admirable job, finishing 12th.

I hate it for Scott (Lagasse) that he got sick, but hope he’s feeling better soon,” Menard said.

But Lagasse did get some well-deserved attention two days earlier when he gave a special ride to a special young man.

According to Boys’ Life, the official publication of the Boy Scouts of America, Lagasse played chauffeur to Cub Scout Caleb Sowinski, giving him a ride to school in Homestead, Fla., in that same No. 33 race car.

Several hundred students cheered the police-escorted procession as it approached the school by chanting 7-year-old Caleb’s name (see video).

Lagasse, a former Boy Scout himself, has had a long-standing relationship with the organization, and the ride for Sowinski was in recognition of his efforts as a Scout.

“I believe heavily in (Scouting),” Lagasse told Boys’ Life. “So to spend a few hours and do something fun with it is not a hard decision to make at all.”

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:

Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change