Desert Diamond West Valley Phoenix Grand Prix Fast Facts
Date: Saturday, April 2, 2016
Track: Phoenix International Raceway, a 1.022-mile oval
Race distance: 250 laps / 255.5 miles
Firestone tire allotment: Nine sets primary with an additional set available to rookie drivers and those outside the top 10 in Verizon IndyCar Series points
Twitter: @PhoenixRaceway, @IndyCar, #DDCPhoenixGrandPrix, #IndyCar
Event website: www.phoenixraceway.com
INDYCAR website: www.IndyCar.com
2005 race winner: Sam Hornish Jr. (No. 6 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Toyota)
2005 pole winner: Bryan Herta (No. 7 XM Satellite Radio Dallara/Honda), 20.3837 seconds (176.612 mph)
Qualifying lap record: Arie Luyendyk (19.608 seconds; 183.599 mph) set on March 23, 1996
NBCSN television telecasts (also available on the NBC Sports Live Extra app):Practice, 1 p.m. ET Friday, April 1; Qualifying, 5 p.m. ET Friday, April 1; Race, 8:30 p.m. ET Saturday, April 2. Rick Allen is the lead announcer for NBCSN’s broadcast this weekend alongside analysts Paul Tracy and Townsend Bell. Pit reporters are Marty Snider, Kevin Lee, Katie Hargitt and Robin Miller.
Video Streaming: Friday’s 9:15 p.m. ET practice session for the Desert Diamond West Valley Phoenix Grand Prix will be available on the INDYCAR YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/indycar) and RaceControl.IndyCar.com.
Radio broadcasts: Mark Jaynes is the chief announcer alongside analyst Davey Hamilton. All Verizon IndyCar Series races are broadcast live on the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network, Sirius 212, XM 209, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app.
Verizon IndyCar Series qualifying is broadcast on Sirius 212, XM 209, IndyCar.com,indycarradio.com and the INDYCAR Mobile app. Verizon IndyCar Series practice sessions plus Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires practice and qualifying are on IndyCar.com,indycarradio.com and the INDYCAR Mobile app.
At-track schedule (all times local):
Friday, April 1
10-11:15 a.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #1, NBCSN (Live)
2-3 p.m. – Qualifying for the Verizon P1 Award (single-car format, two laps each), NBCSN (Live)
6:15-6:45 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series final practice, live stream onRaceControl.IndyCar.Com
Saturday, April 2
2:30 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series systems check
5:30 p.m. – NBCSN on air
6:15 p.m. – Desert Diamond West Valley Phoenix Grand Prix (250 laps/255.5 miles), NBCSN (Live).
* Juan Pablo Montoya claimed the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 13 for the second consecutive season. Montoya has led the points after 16 of the last 17 Verizon IndyCar Series events (only failing to lead following the 2015 season finale at Sonoma).
* The Desert Diamond West Valley Phoenix Grand Prix will be the first Indy car event conducted at Phoenix International Raceway since 2005 and 62nd Indy car race since the track opened in 1964.
* This is the first of five oval races on the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series schedule. Other ovas events scheduled are: the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil (May 29), the Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway (June 11), the Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway (July 10) and the ABC Supply 500 at Pocono Raceway (Aug. 21).
* Four drivers entered this weekend have previously raced Indy cars at Phoenix International Raceway: Ed Carpenter, Helio Castroneves, Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan. Al Unser has the most wins by an Indy car driver at the track (six). Castroneves (2002) and Kanaan (2003 and 2004) are the only past PIR winners entered in this year’s race.
* Eleven drivers have won the Phoenix race from the pole: Castroneves (2002), Arie Luyendyk (1996), Rick Mears (1982, 1989 and 1990), Al Unser (1969 and 1985), Tom Sneva (1984), Teo Fabi (1983), Johnny Rutherford (1977), Gordon Johncock (1973), Bobby Unser (1968, 1972), Lloyd Ruby (1967) and Mario Andretti (1966).
* Drivers who have won at Phoenix have gone on to win the Indy car championship nine times: A.J. Foyt (1964, first race; 1975, second race), Mario Andretti (1966, second race), Bobby Unser (1968, first race), Al Unser (1970, first race; 1985), Rick Mears (1982, first race), Bobby Rahal (1992), Buddy Lazier (2000), Hornish (2001) and Kanaan (2004).
* Three drivers will make their first Indy car oval start this weekend at Phoenix – Max Chilton, Luca Filippi and Alexander Rossi. Chilton and Rossi, along with Conor Daly, are Sunoco Rookie of the Year award candidates. Chilton and Rossi made their series debut at St. Petersburg after competing previously in Formula One.
* The 2016 season is the second in which aerodynamic bodywork component kits are used. The aero kits, produced by engine manufacturers Chevrolet and Honda for their respective supplied teams, are the latest technical innovation to enhance on-track performance through competitive aerodynamic development. Each manufacturer produces two kits for teams – one for short ovals/road courses/street courses and another for superspeedway ovals – but within each kit, teams have multiple component options available.
* The second season of aero kit competition complements the fifth year of engine manufacturer competition between Chevrolet and Honda with their 2.2-liter, twin-turbocharged V-6 engines. It will be another season testing speed and durability to determine the manufacturer champion.