TORONTO -- Red … wait …. Green.
IZOD IndyCar Series drivers practiced standing starts during the morning practice session on the 1.7-mile, 11-turn Exhibition Place street circuit for its implementation in Race 1 of the Honda Indy Toronto on July 13.
INDYCAR officials monitored the mandatory launches from a pit box at the end of pit lane as drivers got used to light sequence countdown. Following two formation laps, 12 rows of two will be staged on the frontstretch for the start of the 85-lap race (3 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network). Red lights will fill 12 rows (two at a time) of the panel, and when filled there will be a delay between .5 and 3 seconds for the panel to switch to all green.
A rolling start will be utilized for Race 2 (3 p.m. ET July 14 on NBC Sports Network). The same format will be used for the Houston doubleheader in early October.
Click it: Honda Indy Toronto practice results
“My first four seasons of open-wheel racing had standing starts. I’m used to them, but it’s been a while,” said James Hinchcliffe, driver of the No. 27 GoDaddy.com car. “Some of the guys, I don’t think they’ve ever done them in a formula car, which is a little scary to think. We have never gone through the procedure of lining up and going through the lights as a series, so there is a risk of someone getting it wrong.
“The other issue is that if somebody does stall there’s nowhere to go, and that’s got potential for issues. But that’s what adds to excitement, right? That’s why everyone should be here on Saturday. It’s going to be really impressive seeing the IndyCars rocket into Turn 1 from a standing start.”
The three rounds of qualifications (2:15 p.m. ET today) will determine the Verizon P1 Award winner for Race 1.
For Race 2 qualifying (10:35 a.m. ET July 13), all cars will participate in one of two groups for 12 minutes each, with groups determined by the combined times posted by entries during the July 12 practice session. The starting field positions will be determined by the best time ranking of the two groups combined, from fastest to slowest, with the fastest qualifier occupying the pole position.
Nine different teams were represented in the top 10 of the time sheet in the lone practice session preceding Race 1. Ryan Hunter-Reay, the defending race winner, posted the quickest lap of 1:00.6802 (104.243 mph) in the No. 1 DHL car for Andretti Autosport. The top 18 cars were separated by less than a second.
Qualifications for both races are available on www.indycar.com and the INDYCAR 13 app with the IMS Radio Network broadcast and live Timing & Scoring.