The Verizon IndyCar Series’ trip to Phoenix International Raceway will have its third date in April in as many years in 2018, as revealed in paperwork filed with International Speedway Corp.’s 2016 Annual Report. The spring 2018 race dates were listed as part of Phoenix’ wider plans for track changes, including a move of the Start/Finish line past Turn 2 (more here from NASCAR Talk).
After running on April 2 for the series’ return for the first time in 11 years in 2016, the date shifts to April 29 this year, in part due to the NCAA Men’s Final Four which takes place in Phoenix on the first weekend of April this year. Easter this year is April 16.
In 2018, Phoenix will run April 13-14, on the third weekend of the month, with another Saturday race. April 1 is Easter Sunday in 2018.
With Long Beach moving up in April for 2017 to the April 7-9 weekend, one weekend ahead of Easter and three ahead of Phoenix, it may occur in 2018 that for the first time Phoenix and Long Beach would actually be on back-to-back weekends.
If Long Beach was to keep the same weekend in 2018, that’d be April 6-8, and thus one weekend ahead of Phoenix, which would make it easier for all series participants from a logistical standpoint.