Pocono keeps same IndyCar weekend date in 2018

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As news of the full Verizon IndyCar Series calendar is still due out in the coming days, depending on when or if the Mexico race possibility gets sorted, tracks have taken it upon themselves to put out race dates of their own.

The latest is Pocono Raceway, which has confirmed the same weekend and two days of August 18-19, 2018 for the ABC Supply 500, as ABC Supply Co. continues its title sponsorship. This year’s weekend was August 19-20.

That leaves it a week before Gateway as part of a likely same three-week-in-a-row run from Pocono to Gateway to Watkins Glen, although the latter date hasn’t been announced yet.

“The 2017 ABC Supply 500 proved why Pocono Raceway was built for INDYCAR racing,” said Pocono Raceway CEO Nick Igdalsky. “This summer’s race was one of the most competitive events in our track’s history. It was also the highest-attended INDYCAR race we hosted since bringing open-wheel racing back here five years ago. From conversations I have had about the 2018 body, we should see speeds pushing, if not exceeding, 240 miles per hour next year.”

Tickets go on sale to the public starting October 4.

With this confirmation, it leaves Green Savoree Racing Promotions events at Toronto and Mid-Ohio – both of which are on an IndyCar schedule through at least 2020 owing to a recently announced Mazda Road to Indy presented by Cooper Tires extensions – and Watkins Glen as 2017 race venues that have yet to announce their 2018 dates, but they’d be expected in their same weekends as this year.

Announced 2018 IndyCar dates so far:

  • March 11, St. Petersburg
  • April 7, Phoenix
  • April 15, Long Beach
  • April 22, Barber
  • May 12, INDYCAR Grand Prix
  • May 27, Indianapolis 500
  • June 2-3, Detroit doubleheader
  • June 9, Texas
  • June 24, Road America
  • July 8, Iowa
  • August 19, Pocono
  • August 25, Gateway
  • Sept. 16, Sonoma

Three-time W Series champ Jamie Chadwick joining Andretti in Indy NXT Series for 2023

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Jamie Chadwick, the three-time W Series champion, will drive for Andretti Autosport in the Indy NXT Series next season.

Chadwick will make her debut in an American racing series in March, driving the No. 28 for Andretti Autosport with sponsorship from DHL. The 24-year-old will become the first female driver in 13 years to compete full time in the Indy NXT championship.

Chadwick joined the female free-to-enter W Series in its inaugural 2019 season, winning two races and the first of three consecutive championships. She has been a reserve driver for the Williams Formula One team and will continue in that role in 2023. She also has driven in the Extreme E Series.

Despite her success, Chadwick hasn’t landed a bigger ride in F3 or F2, and her break didn’t come until Michael Andretti contacted her and offered a test in an Indy NXT car.

The final three races of this year’s W Series schedule were canceled when funding fell through, but Chadwick still believes the all-female series was the right path for her.

“W Series has always been and will continue to be an opportunity to be racing for every female driver, so for my side, I looked at it while perhaps I would have liked to step up maybe earlier, at the same time being able to have that chance to race, get that experience, have that development, seat time… I was constantly learning,” Chadwick told The Associated Press.

“In that sense, I wasn’t frustrated at all. But on the flip side of it, now I’ve had that experience testing in the United States in Indy NXT and this is something I’m really excited about.”

Chadwick also is expected to have an enhanced role as a development driver next season with Williams, which chose American driver Logan Sargeant to fill its open seat on next year’s F1 grid.

“Andretti Autosport is proud to be supporting Jamie alongside DHL,” said Michael Andretti. “Jamie’s successful career speaks for itself, but Indy NXT gives Jamie the opportunity to continue her development in a new type of racing.

“We’ve turned out five Indy NXT champions over the years and look forward to continuing our role in developing new talent.”

Indy NXT is the new name of the rebranded Indy Lights Series, the final step on the ladder system before IndyCar.

Andretti will field two drivers next season in IndyCar that were developed in Indy NXT: Kyle Kirkwood, the 2021 champion, will return to Andretti after one season in IndyCar driving for A.J. Foyt Racing, and Devlin DeFrancesco is back for a second season.

Chadwick will be teammates in Indy NXT with Hunter McElrea and Louis Foster. She becomes Andretti’s second full-time female driver alongside Catie Munnings, who competes for Andretti United in the Extreme E Series.