IndyCar Hits The Streets Of Long Beach This Weekend

Three Different Winners In Three Races In 2019

Scott Stiller
April 12, 2019 - 1:53 pm
Scott Dixon's No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda IndyCar

Karl Zemlin-IndyCar Series

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Long Beach, CA (93.7 The Fan) - The longest running street race in America takes place with this weekend’s NTT IndyCar Series Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

This year marks the 36th IndyCar event at the historic 11-turn temporary street circuit on the streets of Long Beach, California.

Mario Andretti won the first race at Long Beach in 1984 and Al Unser Jr has the most wins with six.

Two drivers entered in this year’s race, Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan Racing’s Sebastien Bourdais and Team Penske’s Will Power, have multiple wins at Long Beach.

Bourdais took the checkered flag 3-straight times from 2005-2007 and Power won in 2008 and 2012. Both will be inducted into the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach Walk of Fame this weekend.

“I am incredibly honored to be inducted into the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach Walk of Fame,” said Bourdais, a four-time Champion.  “Joining such an illustrious group of drivers, owners and teams is very special.”

“I’m a big fan of street courses in general, but that place is special,” said Power.  “It really is one of the legendary races on the schedule. We’ve had a lot of success there and can’t wait to race this weekend.  The No. 12 Verizon Chevy team and I have gone over our data from what was a frustrating day at Barber and have a great plan for us to get back on track at Long Beach.”

Related: Sato Scores A Win For Rahal Letterman Lanigan At Barber

Rahal Letterman Lanigan’s Takuma Sato was victorious at Long Beach in 2013, when he drove for A.J. Foyt, and wants to continue RLL’s momentum after his victory last weekend at Barber Motorsports Park.

“The No. 30 car has won two races in the last five starts if you count the 2018 season,” said Sato, who drives for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.  “Certainly, we are more comfortable with our generic street-course set-up and will develop the speed at the weekend so we should be reasonable competitive.”

PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing’s Scott Dixon tasted victory in 2015 and would like to add another Long Beach victory.

“Long Beach has such an amazing history,” said Dixon.  “It’s truly one of the best street circuits anywhere around, and more importantly you actually get to race there.  It took me forever to get to victory lane there in 2015, but we managed to accomplish that, and I hope we can return to that form again this year in the No. 9 PNC Bank Honda.”

Andretti Autosport’s Ryan Hunter-Reay won the race in 2010 and knows he will have a strong DHL Honda.

“I’m really looking forward to racing in Long Beach again,” said Hunter-Reay.  “The entire team has been strong there the past couple years, so we’re optimistic that we’ll leave with a good result.”

Three other former Long Beach winners are also in the field: Simon Pagenaud (2016), James Hinchcliffe (2017) and last year’s winner Alexander Rossi.

The race could be anybody’s as there have been three winners from three different teams in the first three races of the year: Josef Newgarden/Team Penske at St. Pete; Colton Herta/Harding Steinbrenner Racing at Circuit of the Americas; Sato/RLL at Barber.

The top seven drivers in the NTT IndyCar Championship standings are from seven different teams: Newgarden/Penske; Dixon/CGR; Sato/RLL; Alexander Rossi/Andretti; Herta/Harding Steinbrenner; Bourdais/DCRVS; Hinchcliffe/Arrow Schmidt Petersen Motorsports.

There are two practice sessions scheduled for Friday, April 12 followed by a third practice session on Saturday.

Qualifying also takes place on Saturday with a morning warm-up on Sunday before the race.

The race will be televised by NBCSN and can be heard on Advance Auto Parts IndyCar Radio Network affiliates.

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