Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography

Indy Lights champion Kyle Kaiser named to AARWBA All-America team

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Kyle Kaiser, the 2017 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires champion, has been named to the AARWBA (American Auto Racing Writers and Broadcasters Association) All-America Team. The 21-year-old Kaiser joins Brittany Force, Martin Truex Jr., Josef Newgarden, Ricky and Jordan Taylor, Donny Schatz, and Christopher Bell as drivers honored by AARWBA as part of their 2017 All-America team.

“It’s amazing to be mentioned with all these other drivers,” Kaiser said in a story on Indy Lights’ website. “To be on the same team with the (Verizon IndyCar Series) champion alone is incredible, but to be included with such an outstanding list of champions from all over the motorsports community is really an honor. 2017 was an incredible season for us and a great feat to win the Indy Lights title, and it’s good to be recognized for that accomplishment.”

Kaiser was also keen to highlight the importance of Juncos Racing, with whom he won the Indy Lights crown, on his success.

“It was a team effort, so it’s not just for me but for all the guys at Juncos Racing who worked so hard and put together such a great season,” Kaiser asserted. “We’ll be racing in the Verizon IndyCar Series this season because of this championship and testing starts in February. I’ll be in the car for the first time at the series official test at Phoenix and I’m very excited to get behind the wheel of an Indy car thanks to the Indy Lights championship.”

Kaiser, in his fourth year in the Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires and third in Indy Lights competition, rode a wave of consistency to the championship in 2017. Highlighted by three race victories, including a weekend sweep at Toronto in July, Kaiser’s season saw him finish outside the top 10 only twice in 16 races, including 13 finishes of sixth or better, and he needed to only start the season finale at Watkins Glen to clinch the Indy Lights title.

Kaiser is scheduled to move up to the Verizon IndyCar Series in 2018 and currently has a four-race deal in place with Juncos Racing.

Follow @KyleMLavigne

Indy 500 qualifying: Today’s schedule, TV times, how the 33-car field is set

Indy 500 qualifying schedule
Doug Mathews/IndyCar
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The 33-car field of the 104th Indianapolis 500 will be set through the two-day Indy 500 qualifying schedule Saturday and Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Today’s session will determine the nine cars that will compete for the pole position and starting positions 10-30.

On Sunday, the pole position then will be determined in a Fast Nine Shootout (the top nine qualifiers also received NTT IndyCar Series points).

All on-track activity will be on NBC Sports Gold’s IndyCar pass (click here for streaming Saturday and here for Sunday), and Indy 500 qualifying will be on NBC from 3-5 p.m. ET Saturday and Indy 500 pole qualifying from 1-3 p.m. ET on NBC.

Last year, Simon Pagenaud captured the pole position on the way to winning last year’s Indy 500.

Qualifying speeds at Indianapolis Motor Speedway are determined by a four-lap average around the 2.5-mile track.

Here is the Indy 500 qualifying schedule and how to watch on TV:

Saturday, Aug. 15

5:30 a.m. – Garage opens

6 a.m. – Tech inspection

8:30-9:30 a.m. – Indianapolis 500 practice (NBC Sports Gold)

11 a.m.-5 p.m. – Indianapolis 500 qualifying (NBC Sports Gold; NBC coverage from 3-5 p.m.; NBCSN 5-6 p.m.)

7:30 p.m. – Garage closes

Sunday, Aug. 16

8 a.m. – Garage opens

9 a.m. — Tech inspection

11-11:30 a.m. – Indianapolis 500 practice (NBC Sports Gold)

1:15-2:15 p.m. – Fast Nine pole qualifying (NBC begins at 1 p.m., NBC Sports Gold)

3:30-6 p.m. – Indianapolis 500 practice (NBCSN, NBC Sports Gold)