2019 schedule for Indy Lights, Pro Mazda and USF2000 championships revealed

Indy Lights
0 Comments

Anderson Promotions media release

PALMETTO, Fla. (September 25, 2018) – Andersen Promotions today announced the 2019 Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires schedule which will feature 12 events in support of the Verizon IndyCar Series including a new venue with the addition of Circuit of The Americas and a return to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca for the season finale of all three levels of the globally recognized driver development platform.

Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires and the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship calendars all will feature a mix of ovals, street circuits and road courses to properly train drivers to move up the ladder system with the ultimate goal of reaching IndyCar and the Indianapolis 500.

Following an August 1 announcement by IndyCar and Andersen Promotions, the future of Indy Lights is bright, strengthened by a five-year plan to increase team and driver participation for the final stepping stone to the top level. In addition to an increased champion’s purse of $1.1 million built on a three-race IndyCar program including the 2020 Indianapolis 500, a reduction in entrant budgets was unveiled alongside revised IndyCar driver licensing guidelines and an expansion of the IndyCar testing program.

Indy Lights has become the backbone of IndyCar with 25 of the 33 starters in the 2018 Indianapolis 500 as graduates, including its last five champions. BN Racing recently announced its plans to expand to Indy Lights in 2019, and Team Pelfrey will relocate from its Florida base to Indianapolis to focus on returning with a full-season campaign next year. Interest in the series is high and additional announcements will be made in the coming weeks. In the interim, all eyes have been on series champion Patricio O’Ward and vice champion and Freedom 100 winner Colton Herta, who made their IndyCar Series debut recently at Sonoma Raceway and have been confirmed to the new Harding Steinbrenner Racing team for the full 2019 IndyCar season.

With the highly successful debut of the Tatuus PM-18 this season – finalizing the revitalization of all three levels with state-of-the-art equipment – both Pro Mazda and USF2000 look poised for strong fields in 2019. Reigning USF2000 team champions Pabst Racing has already announced its expansion into Pro Mazda with a two-car effort, and new teams Jay Howard Driver Development and Miller Vinatieri Motorsports will enter the USF2000 fray. ArmsUp Motorsports is also looking at the potential of an expansion to Pro Mazda or the potential for a third car in USF2000.

Details on the full prize packages for each series – including the champion’s scholarships to advance to Pro Mazda and Indy Lights – are currently being finalized and will be announced in the near future.

Prior to kicking off the 2019 season, two events remain on the current calendar. Following the conclusion of the eighth annual Chris Griffis Memorial Open Test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this past weekend, a second Open Test has been scheduled at the Homestead-Miami Speedway road course in Homestead, Fla., on December 3/4, receiving accolades throughout the paddock. The third annual Mazda Road to Indy USF2000 $200K Scholarship Shootout featuring 20 champions of junior open-wheel and karting series from North and South America as well as Europe, Asia, Australasia and Africa will take place in December with venue details and the judging panel to be announced this week.

The traditional Road to Indy annual Spring Training will see all levels return to Homestead-Miami Speedway, on March 2-4, 2019 for three days of on-track action on the 2.21-mile road course. The first two rungs – Pro Mazda and USF2000 –  will take to the track on Saturday and Sunday, March 2-3, with a total of four hours of testing time. Indy Lights will have its own dedicated day of action on Monday, March 4, comprising five hours of track time.

Spring Training will include the invaluable Road to Indy Driver Summit Program. Activities include a comprehensive competition presentation, media training – which most recently was hosted by prominent authorities and noted broadcasters Leigh Diffey and Kevin Lee – and unique presentations on the sixth annual Cooper Tires social media hashtag program and Road to Indy TV, which also returns for its sixth season.

The 2019 Indy Lights calendar will feature an 18-race, 10-event schedule comprised of six road course, two street circuit and two oval events highlighted by the crown jewel in the schedule – the Freedom 100 on Carb Day for the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500. Coverage can be found on NBC Sports Gold as part of the INDYCAR package as well as Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Roku, Xbox One, Road To Indy TV and the Road To Indy TV App.

Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires 2019 Schedule

                         

March 9/10

Streets of St. Petersburg

1.8-mile street course*

March 23/24

Circuit of The Americas

3.427-mile road course*

May 10/11

Indianapolis Motor Speedway 

2.439-mile road course*

May 24 

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

2.5-mile oval

June 22/23

Road America

4.014-mile road course*

July 13/14

Streets of Toronto 

1.786-mile street course*

July 27/28

Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course

2.258-mile road course*

August 24 

Gateway Motorsports Park

1.25-mile oval

August 31/Sept. 1

Portland International Raceway 

1.964-mile road course*

September 21/22 

WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca

 2.238-mile road course*

*Doubleheader events

Open tests are scheduled at Homestead-Miami Speedway on March 4 (road course), the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course on May 9, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval on May 20 and an August date to be confirmed at Gateway Motorsports Park.

The Pro Mazda schedule will feature 16 races at nine venues consisting of five road course, two street circuit and two oval events. In support of the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500, both Pro Mazda and USF2000 will return for the Carb Night Classic on May 24 at Lucas Oil Raceway, which is undergoing a $10M-plus renovation. Pro Mazda will be featured on Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Roku and Xbox One as well as Road To Indy TV and on the Road To Indy TV App.

Pro Mazda Presented by Cooper Tires 2019 Schedule

March 9/10

Streets of St. Petersburg

1.8-mile street course*

May 10/11

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

2.439-mile road course*

May 24

Lucas Oil Raceway

.686-mile oval

June 22/23

Road America

4.014-mile road course*

July 13/14

Streets of Toronto

1.786-mile street course*

July 27/28

Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course

2.258-mile road course*

August 24

Gateway Motorsports Park

1.25-mile oval

August 31/Sept. 1

Portland International Raceway

1.964-mile road course*

September 21/22

WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca

2.238-mile road course*

*Doubleheader events

Pro Mazda test days are scheduled for the Homestead-Miami Speedway road course on March 2/3, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course on May 9, Lucas Oil Raceway on May 13 and 23, the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on June 26/27 (TBC) and an August date to be confirmed at Gateway Motorsports Park.

USF2000 will see 15 races at eight events consisting of five road course, two street circuit and one oval event. Like Pro Mazda, USF2000 coverage will be featured on Apple TV, Amazon Fire, Roku and Xbox One as well as Road To Indy TV and on the Road To Indy TV App.

Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship 2019 Schedule

March 9/10

Streets of St. Petersburg

1.8-mile street course*

May 10/11

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

2.439-mile road course*

May 24

Lucas Oil Raceway

.686-mile oval

June 22/23

Road America 

4.014-mile road course*

July 13/14 

Streets of Toronto 

1.786-mile street course*

July 27/28

Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course

2.258-mile road course*

August 31/Sept. 1

Portland International Raceway

1.964-mile road course*

September 21/22

WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca

2.238-mile road course*

*Doubleheader events

2019 test days are scheduled for the Homestead-Miami Speedway road course on March 2/3, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course on May 9, Lucas Oil Raceway on May 13 and 23 and the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on June 26/27 (TBC).

“Assembling next year’s schedule was the hardest it has been in recent years and that’s because we have too many options, which is a nice problem to have,” said Dan Andersen, Owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions. “We want to be cognizant of team budgets and also have a well-rounded platform for our drivers alongside key markets for series, team and driver sponsors and partners. I am happy with our final blend of events and want to thank all of the promoters for working with us. Portland was a great event this year, and we look forward to returning to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca and adding what will be a tremendous outing at Circuit of The Americas.

“We have a great platform in place but we always want to be better, and we will be looking at ways to improve for 2019. Adding Jonny Baker as our new Series Development Director was a first step. We are also working hard on the sponsorship side for a new partner to entitle the Road to Indy. There really is no off-season in racing and this one will be busier than usual for everyone at Andersen Promotions, but we welcome and look forward to the challenge and the opportunities that lie ahead. We have the full support of Jay Frye and his team at INDYCAR, and I feel the Road to Indy will be back stronger than ever next year.”

2023 SuperMotocross Power Rankings after Houston: Eli Tomac retakes 450 lead, Hunter Lawrence tops 250s

0 Comments

After his Anaheim 2 crash, Eli Tomac was surprised he was not injured, but despite getting knocked down momentarily, he picked himself up, rode to last week’s win and reascended to the top of the SuperMotocross Power Rankings after Houston. This is the third time in three weeks Tomac has topped the rankings.

SuperMotocross Power Rankings Houston
Jason Anderson has back-to-back podiums to his credit and sits second in the Power Rankings. – Feld Motor Sports/MX Sports Pro Racing/Align Media

Last week, Tomac finished second in his heat before winning the Main – and that translated to near-perfect points in the Power Rankings, which award 100 for a win in the feature and 90 for a heat victory. Tomac’s average was marred by the Houston accident when he finished 13th in that heat before settling just outside the top five in overall standings. Racing is about bouncing back and last year’s Supercross and Motocross champion Tomac did just that as he chases a third consecutive title.

Jason Anderson earned his second consecutive podium finish with a third at Houston. He momentarily rolled past Aaron Plessinger into second during a restart following an accident involving Dylan Ferrandis and held that position for four trips around the track until he was tracked down by Chase Sexton. Afterward Anderson faded and finished 12 seconds off the pace, but along with a heat win, he easily leapfrogged Ken Roczen and Cooper Webb, who struggled in the fourth race of the season.

MORE: Eli Tomac rebounds from Anaheim 2 crash with Houston win

Webb held his position by passing Roczen in NBC’s SuperMotocross Power Rankings after Houston. Webb has been solid in 2023 with a worst moto result of seventh in the first Triple Crown race at Anaheim 2, but in order to be considered a solid challenger to Tomac he needs to win either a heat or main this week in Tampa.

Roczen was involved in the incident that sidelined Ferrandis in Houston. Racing for eighth at the time, his bike may have sustained some damage when Ferrandis landed on his back tire, but he was not overly impressive in his heat either with a fifth-place finish. That was enough to drop him three positions in the standings, but he still has Tomac in sight.

After his disappointing heat in San Diego when he crashed and sustained enough damage to place him last, Sexton has roared back. He won the overall in Anaheim 2’s Triple Crown format and narrowed the points’ gap slightly on Tomac. Last week he yarded the field in his heat race and won by a wide margin. A modest start in the Main kept him from getting to Tomac’s back wheel early in the Houston round, and he lost a little ground in the championship.

450 Rankings

This
Week
Rider Power
Avg.
Last
Week
Diff.
1 Eli Tomac
[3 Main; 3 Heats Wins]
85.20 2 1
2 Jason Anderson
[2 Heat Wins]
82.60 4 2
3 Cooper Webb 82.10 3 0
4 Ken Roczen 81.70 1 -3
5 Chase Sexton
[1 Main; 3 Heat Wins]
80.70 6 1
6 Dylan Ferrandis 71.60 5 -1
7 Aaron Plessinger 71.30 8 1
8 Justin Barcia 70.10 7 -1
9 Justin Cooper 68.00 NA
10 Adam Cianciarulo 67.40 9 -1
11 Joey Savatgy 61.20 10 -1
12 Marvin Musquin 61.00 10 -2
13 Malcolm Stewart
[1 Heat Win]
58.75 11 -2
14 Christian Craig 57.20 13 -1
15 Colt Nichols 56.50 14 -1
16 Dean Wilson 49.30 15 -1
17 Justin Hill 39.67 18 1
18 Shane McElrath 36.33 22 4
19 Brandon Scharer 34.00 21 2
20 Logan Karnow 33.33 19 -1

Supercross 450 Points


The 250 East division debuted in Houston and with only one race – and therefore no chance yet to stumble – three of their riders jumped to the top of the chart.

Hunter Lawrence had a perfect week with wins in both his main and heat. It wasn’t without drama, however, as he was forced to jump wide early in the feature to avoid contact with Tom Vialle, who was making his Supercross debut. Without a former 250 champion in the field, it is guaranteed someone new will grace the top of the box at Salt Lake City after the season-ender and it looks like it’s going to be Lawrence’s to lose.

SuperMotocross Power Rankings Houston
Jordon Smith’s last podium before Houston came four years ago in Detroit. – Feld Motor Sports/MX Sports Pro Racing/Align Media

It was more than four years ago that Jordon Smith scored his last Supercross podium in Detroit. Despite finishing second that afternoon, he was battling a wrist injury that eventually sidelined him. More injuries have followed, but Smith was a favorite to win the title in 2019 and he’s shown how well he can ride when he’s healthy.

Debuting third in the Houston SuperMotocross Power Rankings, Max Anstie moved from the 450 class last year to 250s in 2023 and the change has gone better than he anticipated. Finishing second in both his heat and main, Anstie was edged by Smith because he finished second behind that rider in their heat. That is Anstie’s first top-10 since finishing sixth at Southwick, Massachusetts last year on his 450. In that race, he scored fifth-place results in both motos.

Supercross 250 Points

Haiden Deegan proved the hype surrounding his graduation into the 250 class was well deserved and he landed fourth in his division and fifth overall in the SuperMotocross Power Rankings. In his first professional Supercross race, he finished fourth in his heat. In a field with twice the talent, he finished fourth again in the main. At Houston, he balanced aggression with patience. Now that he has a taste of that success, everyone will be watching him closely at Tampa to see if he can continue tiptoeing on the line.

Michael Mosiman, Jeremy Martin, and Vialle are tied for fifth in the 250 East division and seventh overall.

Vialle is the most notable of these three because he challenged for a podium position during the Main before making a mistake and falling in a turn. Significantly, this was not only his 250 debut, but his first time in Supercross. As with Deegan, he has generated a lot of attention for the coming weeks.

250 Rankings

This
Week
Rider Power
Avg.
Last
Week
Diff.
1 Hunter Lawrence – E
[1 Main; 1 Heat Win]
95.00 NA
2 Jordon Smith – E
[1 Heat Win]
90.50 NA
2 Max Anstie – E 90.50 NA
4 Jett Lawrence – W
[2 Main; 2 Heat Wins]
89.13 1 -3
5 Haiden Deegan – E 81.50 NA
6 Cameron McAdoo – W
[1 Heat Win]
77.63 2 -4
7 Mitchell Oldenburg – W 77.00 3 -4
7 Michael Mosiman – E 77.00 NA
7 Jeremy Martin – E 77.00 NA
7 Tom Vialle – E 77.00 NA
11 Stilez Robertson – W
[1 Heat Win]
76.75 4 -7
12 Chance Hymas – E 74.50 -12
13 Levi Kitchen – W
[1 Main Win]
73.75 5 -8
14 RJ Hampshire – W
[3 Heat Wins]
70.00 6 -8
15 Max Vohland – W 69.29 7 -8
16 Cullin Park – E 66.00 NA
17 Chris Blose – E 65.50 NA
18 Derek Kelley – W 63.75 8 -10
19 Enzo Lopes – W 63.25 9 -10
20 Pierce Brown – W 61.29 10 -10

* The NBC Power Rankings assign 100 points to a Main event winner and 90 points for each Heat and Triple Crown win, (Triple Crown wins are included with heat wins below the rider’s name). The points decrement by a percentage equal to the number of riders in the field until the last place rider in each event receives five points. The Power Ranking is the average of these percentage points over the past 45 days.

POWER RANKINGS AFTER WEEK 3 AT ANAHEIM 2: Consistency makes Ken Roczen king
POWER RANKINGS AFTER WEEK 2 AT SAN DIEGO: Roczen moves up, Chase Sexton falls
POWER RANKINGS AFTER WEEK 1 AT ANAHEIM 1: Eli Tomac, Jett Lawrence gain an early advantage