Pocono INDYCAR 500 fueled by Sunoco
TV: NBCSN telecasts the race live (noon ET July 6) and taped qualifications (7 p.m. ET July 5). Bob Varsha is the chief announcer. Paul Tracy and Townsend Bell are the analysts. The Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires race telecast follows the Verizon IndyCar Series race at 4 p.m. (ET).
Radio/web: All Verizon IndyCar Series sessions are broadcast on www.IndyCar.com and the INDYCAR 14 app in conjunction with real-time Timing & Scoring. In addition, the race will be broadcast on IMS Radio Network affiliates, XM 209 and Sirius 213. Paul Page is the chief announcer. ... Live streaming video of the July 5 practice sessions will be on www.IndyCar.com, incorporating Timing & Scoring and the IMS Radio Network broadcast.
Click it: Midseason numbers infographic || Entrant list || Tickets and information
@poconoraceway, @IndyCar, #Pocono500
Weather forecast: Mostly sunny, highs in the mid-70s with negligible percent chance of rain
Weekend schedule (all times Eastern):
Saturday, July 5 – 8:30-9:45 a.m. Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires practice
10-11 a.m. Verizon IndyCar Series practice *
12:30 p.m. Indy Lights qualifications
1:30-2:30 p.m. Verizon IndyCar Series practice *
3:30 p.m. Indy Lights race (40 laps)
5 p.m. Verizon IndyCar Series single-car qualifications
* streaming video on www.IndyCar.com
Sunday, July 6 – Noon NBCSN on air
Qualifications: Single-car cumulative time of two consecutive timed laps, with order determined by blind draw, to determine the Verizon P1 Award winner
Race laps: 200 in counterclockwise direction on the 2.5-mile tri-oval
Start: Three-wide start based on qualifications order … single-file restarts
Pit box dimensions: 40 x 16 feet
Firestone tires: The left-side tires are the same construction as used at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval, while the right-side tires are the superspeedway construction used at Texas. This combination allows Firestone to provide good grip in the flatter turns (Turns 2 and 3) from the left side of the car, while the right-side tires are optimized for the banking in Turn 1. The right-front tire features a new construction that is designed to withstand the demands of Turn 1 at Pocono, which has the highest loading of any turn on the Verizon IndyCar Series circuit in 2014.
Fuel: 125 U.S. gallons of E85 for race ... Verizon IndyCar Series cars carry 18.5 U.S. gallons
Engines: 2.2-liter, twin-turbocharged V6s supplied by Chevrolet and Honda ... 140 kPa turbo boost for oval race. Chevrolet and Honda each have five victories this season.
Aerodynamics: Superspeedway, specific to Pocono -- rear wing mainplane angle of 0 > minus 10.5 degrees. Front wing deflection allowed is .425 of an inch. A rear wing wicker is optional, as are rear wheel backing plate and an underwing strake.
2013: Scott Dixon won in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car, leading a team top-three sweep with Charlie Kimball recording a then-career-best second place and Dario Franchitti finishing third. Marco Andretti, of Nazareth, Pa., earned the Verizon P1 Award (221.337 mph).
What's needed for a good result: “I think you do approach the race a little different than non-500-mile races because it's all about patience and being solid throughout the whole race, not just a couple hundred miles. It's key to stay calm and relaxed throughout the race to have a good finish.” -- Graham Rahal, driver of the No. 15 National Guard car for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
For spectators: A Verizon IndyCar Series autograph session will be held from 9:30-10:30 a.m. July 6 at the INDYCAR Fan Village. ...On July 5, an infield block party featuring a fireworks show will be held at the track after on-track activity. It's open open to the public from 5 p.m. for a $5 donation per vehicle to the Tunkhannock Township Volunteer Fire Company. Tickets to on-track activity that day start at $20, with youngsters 12 and under admitted free. ... Click HERE for the official Pocono Raceway fan guide.
Of note: Andretti's pole-winning speed (221.337 mph) is 41 mph faster than the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series track record set by Jimmie Johnson in 2013. ... Dixon's winning average speed (192.846 mph) is 47 mph faster than the NASCAR record set by Jeff Gordon in 2011. ... Andretti's grandfather, Mario Andretti, won the 1986 race at Pocono, while his father, Michael, started from the pole in the Domino's Pizza 500 and finished 11th. ... After his Pocono win, Dixon went on to sweep at Toronto in the next event en route to claiming the series championship. ... There have been seven different winners representing five teams through the 10 races. There also have been seven different Verizon P1 Award winners. ... This will be the 21st Indy car race at Pocono. ... Carlos Munoz won the Indy Lights race at Pocono in 2013 and makes his debut in an IndyCar at the track. ... At INDYCAR's request, Pocono Raceway has removed the asphalt curbing that lined the inside of Turn 2 (the "Tunnel Turn"), which created a 15-foot apron on the inside though INDYCAR-sanctioned races won't use the wider racing surface. Also, new SAFER Barrier and catch fencing has been added on the inside of the racetrack.
The Triple Crown:
The 500-mile Verizon IndyCar Series races at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Pocono Raceway and Auto Club Speedway are a version of the Triple Crown. From 1971-80, the Indy car Triple Crown consisted of 500-mile races at Pocono Raceway, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Ontario (Calif.) Speedway. When Ontario closed in 1980, it was replaced by Michigan International Speedway and the Triple Crown lasted until 1989.
Al Unser is the only driver to have won all three races in the same calendar year (1978, driving the No. 2 First National City Travel Checks-sponsored car for team owner Jim Hall). Tom Sneva started from the pole at Indy and Ontario, while Danny Ongais was the pole sitter at Pocono.
Pocono Raceway hosted an Indy car race until 1989 and it rejoined the Verizon IndyCar Series schedule with a 400-mile race in 2013. One-hundred miles were added for the 2014 race to have all three venues host 500-mile events. Ryan Hunter-Reay won the first leg (the Indianapolis 500 on May 25). The MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., is Aug. 30.
All the Triple Crown races offer double points (100 to the winner, 90 to runner-up, etc., to 16 points for 22nd place). Bonus points are available for the Verizon P1 Award (one point), leading a race lap (one point) and leading the most race laps (two points). Championship front-runner Will Power takes a 39-point lead over Team Penske teammate Helio Castroneves into the race.
Other Pocono history: The first Indy car race on the 2.5-mile track under USAC sanction was the Schaefer 500 in 1971. Mark Donohue was the winner, followed by Joe Leonard and A.J. Foyt. Two weeks later, Donohue won the Michigan 200 Michigan International Speedway. .... Foyt has the most Indy car victories at Pocono (1973, '75, '79 and 1981), and Johnny Rutherford the most top-five finishes (seven). Rick Mears has the most Indy car poles (four).