Conway remains unsure of pecking order in FIA WEC


Toyota driver Mike Conway is relishing the start of the new FIA World Endurance Championship season at Silverstone in nine days’ time, but remains unsure of the pecking order as Audi and Porsche bid to beat the Japanese manufacturer in 2015.

Conway raced for Toyota in three races last year as he opted to focus on his commitments in IndyCar with Ed Carpenter Racing, claiming wins at Long Beach and Toronto.

However, the Briton has opted to devote his full attention to WEC in 2015, joining Alexander Wurz and Stephane Sarrazin in the no. 2 Toyota.

At the pre-season ‘prologue’ in France last month, Porsche set the pace, but Conway believes that the pecking order will not become clear until the three leading teams in LMP1 are racing out on track together at Silverstone.

“Obviously we knew [Porsche] were quick, and it was the first time this year that everybody came together and we could see what everyone’s got,” Conway said at the series’ season launch in London on Thursday.

“It’s still very hard to tell where you sit at the moment, but it gave us a good indication in some areas of where we’re going to be.

“I think everyone’s excited, and looking forward to Silverstone next weekend where I think we’ll really see the situation of where everyone’s going to be.

“But everybody’s done a mega job, we’ve seen everybody find seconds of the winter.”

Porsche’s no. 18 car of Romain Dumas, Neel Jani and Marc Lieb finished fastest at the Prologue, lapping 1.8 seconds clear of the leading Audi in third place.

Toyota could only muster fifth and sixth place in the combined standings from the test, with Conway’s car a full 3.5 seconds down on the fastest lap from the no. 18.

Adding to the competition that Toyota is likely to face this year, Nissan will be entering the series at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in June with its GT-R LM Nismo car.

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