Photo Courtesy Brian Cleary, IndyCar.com

IndyCar improves LED panels for 2019 season

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An improved system of LED displays will be used in every IndyCar session this year to assist fans with understanding how each car is performing and to aid the safety team in attending disabled cars, it was announced Tuesday.

IndyCar has contracted with a new manufacturer named MoTeC for 2019 to create a version of the system used in IMSA.

“We know that fans at racetracks and watching from home appreciate the LED system that helps them keep track of how their favorite cars and drivers are performing,” IndyCar President Jay Frye said at IndyCar.com. “That’s why we worked hard in the offseason to develop a more reliable system that will have even brighter displays that make them more visible to everyone. Our thanks go to MoTeC and Jon Koskey, IndyCar’s senior director of technology, who led the effort on this important project.”

One feature of the new displays is that they are lighter, which will insure that there are no performance issues. They were tested in simulated race conditions during the offseason and will be mounted on the chassis’ roll hoop in time for the season opener in St. Petersburg, Fla.

The system receives data from IndyCar’s timing and scoring system. Continuously updated at the timing loops embedded in the track, the displays show a car’s running position on the leaderboard during each session.

When a driver presses the push-to-pass button, the display will alight a flashing green “PP”.

During pit stops, the displays will transform into a counter showing the length of service in tenths of a second.

One safety feature is that the display can also show when a car has lost power – assisting in the determination of when to deploy the safety team.

The lights will debut with the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg’s practice session beginning on March 8. All practice session will air live on IndyCar Pass – NBC’s streaming service from NBC Sports Gold. More than 200 hours of broadcast qualify programming can be seen on this service, which is currently available at the IndyCar Pass on NBC Sports Gold site.

Chip Ganassi to be honored in Petersen Museum exhibit

Joe Skibinski / IndyCar
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This Saturday, the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles will debut a new exhibit honoring one of the most successful teams in American motorsports.

Titled “Chip Ganassi Racing: Fast Tracks to Success | 30th Anniversary Tribute,” the exhibit will display several significant cars, trophies, and other artifacts from CGR’s storied racing history. Ganassi will formally be honored April 15, 2020 at the Petersen’s Annual Racers Night before the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Dario Franchitti’s 2010 Dallara IR-05. Photo Kahn Media

Vehicles displayed in the exhibit will include the 1983 Patrick Wildcat MK9B raced by Chip Ganassi to his best finish in the Indianapolis 500, the Lexus-powered Riley MK X1 raced by Scott Dixon in the 2006 24 Hours of Daytona, the Dallara IR-05 driven to victory by Dario Franchitti in the 2010 Indianapolis 500, the Ford GT that finished first in the LM GTE category at the 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans, and the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 driven by Kurt Busch in the 2019 NASCAR Cup Series.

“Chip Ganassi is an influential member of the automotive community, and his team’s penchant for success is a reflection of his raw skill and passion for the sport,” said Petersen Automotive Museum Executive Director Terry L. Karges. “Complemented by a visually dynamic and compelling 180-degree video, ‘Chip Ganassi Racing’ will celebrate the team’s victories and tell its story while taking visitors on a trip down memory lane.” 

“Chip Ganassi Racing: Fast Tracks to Success | 30th Anniversary Tribute” will run through January 31, 2021. The museum will host a ticketed opening reception on December 13. More information on the Petersen Museum can be found at www.petersen.org.

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