IndyCar 2022 schedule has 14 races on NBC

IndyCar 2022 schedule NBC
Mike Dinovo/USA TODAY Sports

The NTT IndyCar Series released its 2022 schedule Sunday with a record 14 of its 17 races to be broadcast live on NBC, including its earliest season opener in 19 years.

IndyCar will begin the 2022 season Feb. 27, 2022 on the streets of St. Petersburg. It’s the first February start since the Championship Auto Racing Teams circuit started its 2003 season Feb. 23 in St. Pete.

The Grand Prix of St. Petersburg will kick off six consecutive races on NBC to open the 2022 season, including the 106th Indy 500 on May 29. The May 21-22 qualifying weekend at the Brickyard also will be on NBC.

The June 5 race at Belle Isle in Detroit will be shown on USA Network, which also will broadcast the Aug. 20 race at World Wide Technology Raceway. The July 17 street race in Toronto will become the first IndyCar race shown exclusively on the Peacock streaming platform.

INDYCAR AT LAGUNA SECADetails for watching Sunday’s race

All the other races will be shown on NBC. Peacock also will stream all 17 races on the schedule.

“We’re incredibly excited about our 2022 NTT IndyCar Series schedule, highlighted by the 106th running of the Indianapolis 500 and a record 14 IndyCar races on the NBC broadcast network that will bring added exposure to the series,” Mike Perman, vice president of programming for NBC Sports, said in a statement. “With more races than ever on NBC, plus comprehensive live coverage of every minute of the 2022 season on Peacock with practices, qualifying and race simulstreams, we look forward to continuing to grow the sport and super-serve INDYCAR fans across the country.”

“This schedule continues to build on the growth and momentum the NTT IndyCar Series has achieved, especially in 2021,” Penske Entertainment Corp. President and CEO Mark Miles said in a statement. “Our terrific partnership with NBC Sports has led to a fantastic opportunity to place an unparalleled 14 events on broadcast television while completing the rest of the schedule with USA Network and Peacock.

“Our drivers and teams will give the fans a strong, earlier start with six consecutive races on NBC, building even more anticipation for the crown jewel of the Indianapolis 500 in May. Our summer schedule also is full of action, with no extended breaks in the calendar, leading into the crowning of a champion on the West Coast with our last two races also on NBC.”

Other notable elements in 2022:

–The season will conclude with eight races in nine weeks (six on NBC).

–Texas Motor Speedway will move to March for the first time, the second consecutive year the 1.5-mile track will be ahead of the Indy 500.

–After being postponed this season to the Sept. 26 season finale, the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will return with an April 10 race on NBC, its first network TV broadcast in 15 years.

Long Beach is one of two races remaining in the 2021 season. WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca will play host to the Grand Prix of Monterey at 3 p.m. ET Sunday on NBC.

Here is the 2022 schedule (start times will be unveiled at a later date):

Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun, Feb. 27 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC
Sun., March 20 Texas Motor Speedway NBC
Sun., April 10 Streets of Long Beach NBC
Sun., May 1 Barber Motorsports Park NBC
Sat., May 14 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC
Sun., May 29 The 106th Indianapolis 500 NBC
Sun., June 5 Raceway at Belle Isle Park/Detroit USA Network
Sun., June 12 Road America NBC
Sun., July 3 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course NBC
Sun., July 17 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC
Sun., July 24 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC
Sat., July 30 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC
Sun., Aug. 7 Streets of Nashville NBC
Sat., Aug. 20 World Wide Technology Raceway USA Network
Sun., Sept. 4 Portland International Raceway NBC
Sun, Sept. 11 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change

Justin Grant prevails over Kyle Larson in the Turkey Night Grand Prix

Grant Larson Turkey Night / DB3 Inc.

On the heels of his Hangtown 100 victory, Justin Grant worked his way from 13th in the Turkey Night Grand Prix to beat three-time event winner Kyle Larson by 1.367 seconds. The 81st annual event was run at Ventura (Calif.) Raceway for the sixth time.

“My dad used to take me to Irwindale Speedway, and we’d watch Turkey Night there every year,” Grant said in a series press release. “This is one of the races I fell in love with. I didn’t think I’d ever get a chance to run in it, never thought I’d make a show and certainly never thought I’d be able to win one.”

With its genesis in 1934 at Gilmore Stadium, a quarter-mile dirt track in Los Angeles, the race is steeped in history with winners that include AJ Foyt, Parnelli Jones, Gary Bettenhausen and Johnnie Parsons. Tony Stewart won it in 2000. Kyle Larson won his first of three Turkey Night Grands Prix in 2012. Christopher Bell earned his first of three in 2014, so Grant’s enthusiasm was well deserved.

So was the skepticism that he would win. He failed to crack the top five in three previous attempts, although he came close last year with a sixth-place result. When he lined up for the feature 13th in the crowded 28-car field, winning seemed like a longshot.

Grant watched as serious challengers fell by the wayside. Mitchel Moles flipped on Lap 10 of the feature. Michael “Buddy” Kofoid took a tumble on Lap 68 and World of Outlaws Sprint car driver Carson Macedo flipped on Lap 79. Grant saw the carnage ahead of him and held a steady wheel as he passed Tanner Thorson for the lead with 15 laps remaining and stayed out of trouble for the remainder of the event.

“It’s a dream come true to win the Turkey Night Grand Prix,” Grant said.

Kyle Larson follows Justin Grant to the front on Turkey Night

The 2012, 2016 and 2019 winner, Larson was not scheduled to run the event. His wife Katelyn is expecting their third child shortly, but after a couple of glasses of wine with Thanksgiving dinner and while watching some replays of the event, Larson texted car owner Chad Boat to see if he had a spare car lying around. He did.

“We weren’t great but just hung around and it seemed like anybody who got to the lead crashed and collected some people,” Larson said. “We made some passes throughout; in the mid-portion, we weren’t very good but then we got better at the end.

“I just ran really, really hard there, and knew I was running out of time, so I had to go. I made some pretty crazy and dumb moves, but I got to second and was hoping we could get a caution to get racing with Justin there. He was sliding himself at both ends and thought that maybe we could get a run and just out-angle him into [Turn] 1 and get clear off [Turn] 2 if we got a caution, but it just didn’t work out.”

Larson padded one of the most impressive stats in the history of this race, however. In 10 starts, he’s won three times, finished second four times, was third once and fourth twice.

Bryant Wiedeman took the final spot on the podium.

As Grant and Larson began to pick their way through the field, Kofoid took the lead early from the outside of the front row and led the first 44 laps of the race before handing it over to Cannon McIntosh, who bicycled on Lap 71 before landing on all fours. While Macedo and Thorson tussled for the lead with McIntosh, Grant closed in.

Thorson finished 19th with McIntosh 20th. Macedo recovered from his incident to finish ninth. Kofoid’s hard tumble relegated him to 23rd.

Jake Andreotti in fourth and Kevin Thomas, Jr. rounded out the top five.

1. Justin Grant (started 13)
2. Kyle Larson (22)
3. Bryant Wiedeman (4)
4. Jake Andreotti (9)
5. Kevin Thomas Jr. (1)
6. Logan Seavey (8)
7. Alex Bright (27)
8. Emerson Axsom (24)
9. Carson Macedo (7)
10. Jason McDougal (18)
11. Jake Swanson (16)
12. Chase Johnson (6)
13. Jacob Denney (26)
14. Ryan Timms (23)
15. Chance Crum (28)
16. Brenham Crouch (17)
17. Jonathan Beason (19)
18. Cade Lewis (14)
19. Tanner Thorson (11)
20. Cannon McIntosh (3)
21. Thomas Meseraull (15)
22. Tyler Courtney (21)
23. Buddy Kofoid (2)
24. Brody Fuson (5)
25. Mitchel Moles (20)
26. Daniel Whitley (10)
27. Kaylee Bryson (12)
28. Spencer Bayston (25)