Five things to watch for at Honda Indy Toronto at Exhibition Place

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With last week’s victory, Alexander Rossi has clawed his way to within seven points of Josef Newgarden as the series heads into Round 11 of the NTT IndyCar Series. Based on their performance so far on street and road courses this season, one would have to give good odds that a change could change at the end of the Honda Indy Toronto at Exhibition Place.

Looking back on the past two runnings of this race, however, that might not be as simple as it would appear.

Here are some of the storylines to watch this Sunday:

  1. Based on recent performance, Rossi can easily lay claim to being the hottest driver on the circuit. The first 10 rounds for the Andretti Autosport hot shoe have ended outside the top 10 only twice this year and he has a current five-race, top-five streak to his credit.
  2. The top two in the standings hold a considerable lead over the field with a 61-point advantage for Newgarden over third-place Simon Pagenaud. That means the leaders need only keep their principle rival in sight – and it appears Newgarden and Rossi have been well-matched at Toronto over the past two seasons. In 2017 Newgarden won this race with Rossi on his heels in second. Last year, Rossi edged Newgarden by one spot as they struggled to finish eighth and ninth.
  3. Still looking for his first top-five of the season, James Hinchliffe could finally finish in the low single digits this week. He enters Toronto with a current three-race streak of top-fives that is unmatched. Earlier this year, his best result came on another temporary circuit of St Petersburg; he backed that up with another sixth on the permanent road course of Barber Motorsports Park.
  4. With three sub-15th-place finishes in his last five starts, Scott Dixon should rebound this week. Six of eight attempts on street and road courses have ended in top-five finishes including his victory in the second race at Belle Isle. He won last year’s edition of this race, which is past of an eight-race streak of top-10s.
  5. If Pagenaud is going to make up any ground on the points leaders, this is a good week to do so. Pagenaud is one of four active drivers (along with Dixon, Hinchcliffe and Marco Andretti) with at least a three-race streak of top-10s. He finished ninth in 2016, fifth in 2017 and second last year.

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IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
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The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:


Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change