Courtesy: Detroit Grand Prix

INDYCAR: Fast Facts for this weekend’s Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix

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Here’s what you need to know about this weekend’s pair of IndyCar races in the Chevrolet Dual in Detroit Grand Prix on Belle Isle (information courtesy IndyCar media relations):

Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear Fast Facts

Race weekend: Friday, June 1 – Sunday, June 3

Track: Raceway at Belle Isle Park, a 2.35-mile, 14-turn temporary street course (clockwise)

Race distance: 70 laps / 164.5 miles (both races)

Entry List:  Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear (PDF)

Push-to-pass parameters: 150 seconds of total time with a maximum time of 15 seconds per activation. (for each race)

Firestone tire allotment: Nine sets primary, four sets alternate (weekend). Teams must use one new set of primary and alternate tires in each race.

Twitter: @DetroitGP @IndyCar, #DetroitGP, #IndyCar

Event website: http://www.DetroitGP.com

INDYCAR website: www.IndyCar.com

2017 race winner: Race 1: Graham Rahal (No. 15 SoldierStrong / TurnsForTroops.com Honda); Race 2: Graham Rahal (No. 15 SoldierStrong / TurnsForTroops.com Honda)

2017 Verizon P1 Award winners: Race 1: Graham Rahal (No. 15 SoldierStrong / TurnsForTroops.com Honda) 1:13.9681, 114.374 mph; Race 2: Takuma Sato, (No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda) 1:13.6732, 114.831 mph.

Qualifying lap record: Takuma Sato, 1:13.6732, 114.831 mph, June 4, 2017

ABC race broadcasts: Saturday, June 2 and Sunday, June 3 (3:30 p.m. ET)

Allen Bestwick is the lead announcer for ABC broadcasts alongside analysts Scott Goodyear and Eddie Cheever Jr. Rick DeBruhl and Jon Beekhuis are the pit reporters.

Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network broadcasts: Mark Jaynes is the chief announcer alongside analyst Anders Krohn with Jake Query and Nick Yeoman in the turns. All Verizon IndyCar Series races are broadcast live on the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network, Sirius 214, XM 209, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app. All Verizon IndyCar Series practice and qualifying sessions are available on IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app.

Video streaming: All practice sessions and qualifying for the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will stream live on RaceControl.IndyCar.com and on the INDYCAR YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/indycar)

At-track schedule (all times local):

Friday, June 1

11:20 a.m. -12:05 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #1

3:10 – 3:55 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series practice #2

4 – 4:20 p.m. – Verizon IndyCar Series pit stop practice

Saturday, June 2

10:55-11:25 a.m. – Race 1 qualifying for Verizon P1 Award (two groups/12 minutes each), IndyCar.com (live)

3:03 p.m. – Driver introductions

3:43 p.m. – Command to start engines

3:50 p.m. – Chevrolet Dual in Detroit #1 (70 laps/164.5 miles), ABC (live)

Sunday, June 3

10:45-11:15 a.m. – Race 2 qualifying for Verizon P1 Award (two groups/12 minutes each), IndyCar.com (live)

2:59 p.m. – Driver introductions

3:43 p.m. – Command to start engines

3:50 p.m. – Chevrolet Dual in Detroit #2 (70 laps/164.5 miles), ABC (live)

Race notes:

* The Chevrolet Dual in Detroit will be the 24th and 25th Indy car races conducted at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park and the 27th and 28th Indy car races held in Detroit. A 2.5-mile street circuit in downtown Detroit hosted CART events from 1989-1991.

* Sebastien Bourdais, Will Power and Graham Rahal have each won twice at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park, the most by an active Indy car driver at the track. Helio Castroneves won three times at Belle Isle, the most of any driver. In addition to Bourdais, Power and Rahal, other previous Belle Isle winners entered include Tony Kanaan (2007), Scott Dixon (2012) and Simon Pagenaud (2013, Race #2).

* There have been 16 different pole winners in the previous 23 races. Pole winners entered in this year’s race are: Graham Rahal (2017, Race 1), Takuma Sato (2014, Race 2; 2017, Race 2), Simon Pagenaud (2016 – both races), Will Power (2015, Race 1) and Scott Dixon (2008 and 2012).

* Four drivers have won the race from the pole: Graham Rahal (2017, Race 1), Scott Dixon (2012), Helio Castroneves (2001) and Robby Gordon (1995).

* The driver who has gone on to win the championship has won at Detroit four times. Will Power won Race 2 in 2014, Alex Zanardi won on Belle Isle in 1998, Bobby Rahal won at Belle Isle in 1992 and Emerson Fittipaldi won in downtown Detroit in 1989.

* Since 1995, seven drivers have won the seventh race of the season and won the championship. They are: Dario Franchitti (2009, Iowa), Scott Dixon (2008, Texas, and 2003, Richmond), Sebastien Bourdais (2005, Edmonton), Sam Hornish Jr. (2006, Richmond), Cristiano da Matta (2002, Chicago), Greg Ray (1999, Dover), Kenny Brack (1998, Charlotte) and Tony Stewart (1997, Charlotte). Ten drivers have won the eighth race of the season and won the championship. They are: Franchitti (2011, Milwaukee; 2007, Iowa), Bourdais (2007, Edmonton; 2005, San Jose), Hornish (2006, Kansas; 2002, Richmond), Tony Kanaan (2004, Nashville), da Matta (2002, Toronto), Buddy Lazier (2000, Kentucky), Gil de Ferran (2000, Portland), Ray (1999, Pikes Peak), Alex Zanardi (1998, Detroit) and Brack (1998, Pikes Peak).

* Tony Kanaan has competed in 15 previous races at Belle Isle, most of any driver. Thirteen drivers entered have led laps at the track (Graham Rahal 107, Simon Pagenaud 93, Scott Dixon 83, Will Power 47, Takuma Sato 44, Sebastien Bourdais 38, Kanaan 30, Marco Andretti 24, Ryan Hunter-Reay 20, James Hinchcliffe 11, Josef Newgarden 7, Charlie Kimball 3 and Alexander Rossi 1.)

* There have been four different winners in six Verizon IndyCar Series races in 2018. Sebastien Bourdais (Streets of St. Petersburg), Alexander Rossi (Streets of Long Beach), Josef Newgarden (ISM Raceway and Barber Motorsports Park) and Will Power (Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course and Indianapolis Motor Speedway) have won races in 2018.

* There have been six different Verizon P1 Award winners in 2018. Robert Wickens (Streets of St. Petersburg), Sebastien Bourdais (ISM Raceway), Alexander Rossi (Streets of Long Beach), Josef Newgarden (Barber Motorsports Park), Will Power (Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course) and Ed Carpenter (Indianapolis Motor Speedway) have won poles in 2018. The record for most pole winners in a season is 12 set in the 1999 CART season.

* The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will be the fifth and sixth races on a road/street course in 2018. The first four races were won by Sebastien Bourdais (St. Petersburg), Alexander Rossi (Long Beach), Josef Newgarden (Barber) and Will Power (INDYCAR Grand Prix).

* Six drivers will race Verizon IndyCar Series cars at the Raceway at Belle Isle for the first time: Rene Binder, Santino Ferrucci, Jordan King, Matheus Leist, Zach Veach and Robert Wickens. Ferrucci will be making his series debut.

* Tony Kanaan seeks to start his 290th consecutive race this weekend, which would extend his Indy car record streak that began in June 2001 at Portland. Scott Dixon has made 230 consecutive starts heading into the weekend which is the second-longest streak in Indy car racing.

*  Drivers may engage their “push-to-pass” for a total of 150 seconds during each race, with a maximum duration of 15 seconds for any one activation. The push-to-pass is not available on the initial race start or any restart unless it occurs in the final two laps or three minutes of a timed race. The feature increases the power of the engine by approximately 60 horsepower.

Mario Andretti says Colton Herta could be next American star in F1

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Mario Andretti’s last Formula One victory is also the last by an American driver in more than 42 years on the international open-wheel road racing series.

If you had told Andretti that while he was celebrating on the Grand Prix of the Netherlands podium on Aug. 27, 1978 at the Vandzoort circuit, he wouldn’t have believed it.

“Absolutely not,” Andretti told Kyle Petty during the most recent “Coffee With Kyle” episode (video above). “It’s a shame. Somehow we have so much talent here, and either there’s no invitation or something there. But I think it’s time to give some of this young talent that, in my opinion, is absolutely capable.”

The Dutch GP was the last of Andretti’s 12 victories in F1 and came during his championship season. No one since has come close to matching his success in F1.

Mario Andretti drives his Lotus-Ford to victory in the 1978 Grand Prix of the Netherlands (Bernard Cahier/Getty Images).

Andretti’s son, Michael, took a full-time ride with McLaren in 1993 but left with three races remaining in a season marred by crashes and mechanical problems.

Scott Speed was the last American to run a full F1 season in 2006, and Alexander Rossi made the most recent F1 start by a U.S. driver in 2015. Rossi has said he has no desire to return to racing in Europe after winning the 2016 Indianapolis 500 and becoming an IndyCar championship contender.

But Mario Andretti believes Andretti Autosport has another rising star with F1-caliber ability.

“Colton Herta is one that comes to mind,” Mario Andretti said. “As a young lad, his dad sent him to Europe, he was doing Formula 3, and he knows most of the circuits there. He’s trained. He’s showed in his rookie season and won some premium races at COTA (and Laguna Seca), beat two of the very best Indy has to offer (in) Will Power and Scott Dixon.

“This is one kid I’d love to see him get a break over there to fly the U.S. colors again.”

Herta, 20, seems interested in exploring an F1 leap over the next few years. After winning Sept. 13 at Mid-Ohio from the pole position (his third career victory in the NTT IndyCar Series), the No. 88 Dallara-Honda driver is ranked fourth in the standings in his sophomore year and regarded as one of the series’ top prospects.

Herta recently told RACER.com “I’d love to give Formula 1 a crack” but said he also would be happy driving in IndyCar and IMSA.

A naturalized U.S. citizen who told Petty about spending several years with his family in an Italian refugee camp before coming to America, Mario Andretti said F1 brought an enormous sense of patriotic pride.

“Formula One is like the Olympics in a sense,” he said. “You’re in a different country, a different continent. When you earn that highest step of the podium, they play your national anthem. That’s when you take nothing for granted. You feel like I’m representing my country, and the proudest moments are those.

“I’d just like to see some other American drivers experience that. It’s time.”

Mario Andretti with four-time NASCAR champion Jeff Gordon and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton before the Nov. 22, 2015 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway (Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images).

During the “Coffee With Kyle” conversation, Andretti also discussed:

–His versatility as a winner in IndyCar, sports cars, NASCAR and Formula One;

–His 1967 Daytona 500 victory and how he enjoyed racing with crew chief Jake Elder at the famed Holman-Moody team;

Mario Andretti Colton Herta
Mario Andretti and Kyle Petty saluted “The King” by wearing their Richard Petty-style hats during the latest “Coffee With Kyle” (NBCSN).

–Why he delayed his entry to F1 for a few years because of his earnings power in IndyCar. “I always say I’d race for free, but at the same time, you’re thinking of family and the future,” he said. “It was in the back of your mind that you can’t give up the earning power of IndyCar. That kept me from going full time in Formula One, but I always said that sometime in my career, I’d have to devote a period to Formula One.”

–On what it was like racing in an era when driver deaths were more prevalent. “If you’re going to do this, you’re not going to dwell on those negatives,” Andretti said. “There’s no way. You knew it was present. Especially in the ‘60s at the beginning of the season at the drivers meetings, you couldn’t help but look around and say, ‘I wonder who is not going to be here at the end of the season.’ We’d lose four to five guys. In ’64, we lost six guys.

“It’s something if you dwell on that, you’re going to take on a different profession. It’s a desire and love to want to drive that overcame all that and then the confidence it’s not going to happen to me. And then you pray.”

Watch the full “Coffee With Kyle” episode in the video above or by clicking here.

Mario Andretti looks on before the 103rd Indianapolis 500 on May 26, 2019 (Chris Graythen/Getty Images).