IndyCar: drivers break down Honda Indy Toronto


The 10th round of the Verizon IndyCar Series’ season takes it north to Toronto, Ontario, Canada for its only event not held in the United States.

The 85-lap race will be held at the Streets of Toronto’s Exhibition Place, an 11-turn, 1.755-mile temporary street course. It’s the eighth race held on a road/street course in 2015 and the first seven races provided seven different winners.

Toronto, which held dual race weekends from 2013-14, has had 6 different winners in its last seven races. The only driver to win twice was Scott Dixon, who swept the 2013 races.

Of the two winners of last year’s dual races, only Sebastien Bourdais returns to defend his victory. Bourdais also won the last street-course race in Detroit.

“Obviously the Toronto street circuit is one I enjoy racing on,” Bourdais said in a release. “We have had some good results there including the win last year, which was special because it was my first since coming back to IndyCar.”

Bourdais is one of three drivers in the field to have won twice at the track, including Dixon and Will Power (2007, ’10). Power’s best finish since his last win there was third in race two last year. Between those races, he record three DNF’s in five races.

“Anytime you race at Toronto, you need to have a bit of luck on your side,” Power said. “Obviously a fast car helps tremendously, but it seems inevitable that you will have some contact during the race. You just hope it doesn’t put you out. You have to race side by side into some of the corners – especially after the long straight – and sometimes both of you don’t come out of it unscathed.”

In the last four Toronto races, there was an average of three accident related cautions, with the most being five in race two in 2014.

“It’s always a very tricky course because the amount of concrete-to-pavement transitions on the track is a really difficult thing to get a handle on,” said Graham Rahal, who has an average finish of 15th in eight starts there. His best was 5th in 2010. “I think we are up to the task, for sure, but I always find this track difficult because of the variation in speed of the corners and the bumps that exist mid-corner due to pavement changes.”

Jack Hawksworth, who says Toronto is probably his favorite track on the circuit, says those surface transitions are really important in braking zones.

“There are lots of surface changes and bumps that make it a real old-school street track,” Hawksworth said. “Handling over the bumps is extremely important, especially in the big braking zones. You need good grip through the many medium-speed corners but also good speed on the long back straight, which makes it a very challenging type of track in terms of aero efficiency.”

Beta Motorcycles joins SuperMotocross in 2024, Benny Bloss named first factory rider

Beta Motorcycles 2024 Bloss
Beta Motorcycles

Benny Bloss will race for the factory Beta Motorcycles team in 2024 as that manufacturer joins SuperMotocross as the ninth brand to compete in the series. Beta Motorcycles will make their debut in the Monster Energy Supercross opener at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California in January.

Benny Bloss finished among the top 10 twice in Pro Motocross, in 2016 and 2018. – Beta Motorcycles

“The wait is over and we can finally share everything we have been working towards,” said Carlen Gardner, Race Team Manager in a press release. “It has been a great experience being a part of this development and seeing the progression. The only missing part was finding a rider that would mesh well with our Beta Family.

“After a one phone call with Benny, we knew it would be a good fit for him, and for us. We are happy to have him on board for the next two years and can’t wait to see everyone at Anaheim in January.”

Bloss debuted in the 450 class in 2015 with a 15th-place finish overall at Ironman Raceway in Crawfordsville, Indiana.

Bloss has a pair of top-10 rankings in the division with a sixth-place finish in the Pro Motocross Championship in 2016 and a seventh in 2018. His best Supercross season ended 15th in the standings in 2018.

“I’m extremely excited to join the Beta Factory Racing team,” Bloss said. “It’s cool to see a brand with such a rich history in off-road racing to come into the US Supercross and Motocross space. I know this team will be capable of great things as we build and go racing in 2024.”

Bloss is currently 22nd in the SuperMotocross rankings and has not raced in the first two rounds of the Motocross season.

Testing for Beta Motorcycles is scheduled to begin in August and the team expects to announce a second rider at that time.

The family-owned brand adds to the international flare of the sport. The company was founded in Florence, Italy in 1905 as Società Giuseppe Bianchi as they built handmade bicycles, The transition to motorcycle production in the late 1940s.

Beta Motorcycles competed and won in motocross competition in the late 1970s and early 1980s with Jim Pomeroy and other riders.

Beta will join Triumph Motorcycles as a second historic brand to join the sport in 2024. First established in 1902, Triumph has won in nearly every division they have competed in, dating back to their first victory in the 1908 Isle of Man TT. Triumph will debut in the 250 class in 2024 and plans to expand into 450s in 2025.