By: Tanner Watkins
May 29, 2019 | 12:00 PM
Well folks, the month of May at Indianapolis is over – but that doesn’t mean the NTT IndyCar Series is slowing down any time soon! This weekend, the stars and cars will visit the Belle Isle street course for two races at the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix.
Heading into the first races of June, we have a new points leader as Simon Pagenaud swept the month of May at Indianapolis – propelling him to the top spot by one point over teammate Josef Newgarden. A trio of Honda drivers – Alexander Rossi, Takuma Sato and Scott Dixon – fill out the top five in points after strong Indianapolis 500 runs.
As we enter rounds seven and eight of the 2019 championship, we have seen five different winners through the first six races. That includes Pagenaud’s two victories, and wins by Newgarden (St. Petersburg), rookie Colton Herta (Circuit of the Americas), Takuma Sato (Barber), and Alexander Rossi, a back-to-back winner at Long Beach.
There are only four drivers who have won twice at the Belle Isle Park street circuit, and each of them are racing this weekend: Sebastien Bourdais, Dixon, Power, and Graham Rahal. There is one driver who had three wins at this event, though the popular Brazilian will sit out the rest of the season: Indy-only driver Helio Castroneves.
For Bourdais, racing at Detroit offers not only opportunity for his team to leave its mark but also a chance for the series to showcase the work that Roger Penske has poured into this event.
“Roger (Penske) and his staff have done a great job with the Detroit Grand Prix. Every year it just gets better, even if the weather doesn’t always cooperate,” added the French driver.
“The atmosphere is fantastic, the improvements to the facility are great, and the staff is courteous and helpful. It’s just a great event. The weekend is unique with two races, which is tough on the team, but it’s the same for everyone.
“Obviously, I’ve had some success there winning races in 2015 and 2016,” Bourdais continued. “I haven’t really qualified well, which we have to improve on because qualifying is so important on that circuit.
“Unfortunately, Indy didn’t go the way we wanted, but the SealMaster Honda No. 18 team always works hard and never gives up. If we can have two strong performances this weekend on Belle Isle, we can make up a lot of ground in the standings.”
To get ready for this weekend’s doubleheader at Detroit, check out the race’s Fast Facts, courtesy of IndyCar.
Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear Fast Facts
Race weekend: Friday, May 31 – Sunday, June 2
Track: Raceway at Belle Isle Park, a 2.35-mile, 14-turn temporary street course (clockwise)
Race distance: 70 laps / 164.5 miles (both races)
Entry List: Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear (PDF)
Push-to-pass parameters: 150 seconds of total time with a maximum time of 15 seconds per activation. (for each race)
Firestone tire allotment: Nine sets primary, four sets alternate (weekend). Teams must use one set of primary and alternate tires in each race.
Twitter: @DetroitGP @IndyCar, #DetroitGP, #IndyCar
Event website: http://www.DetroitGP.com
INDYCAR website: www.IndyCar.com
2018 race winners: Race 1: Scott Dixon (No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda); Race 2: Ryan Hunter-Reay (No. 28 DHL Honda)
2018 NTT P1 Award winners: Race 1: Marco Andretti (No. 98 AutoNation/Curb Honda) 1:14.8514, 113.024 mph; Race 2: Alexander Rossi (No. 27 Ruoff Home Mortgage Honda) 1:33.3143, 90.661 mph
Qualifying lap record: Takuma Sato, 1:13.6732, 114.831 mph, June 4, 2017
NBC Sports weekend broadcasts: Race 1 Qualifying: noon ET Saturday, NBCSN (taped); Race 1: 3 p.m. ET Saturday, NBC (live); Race 2 Qualifying: 10:30 a.m. ET Sunday, NBCSN (live); Race 2: 3 p.m. ET Sunday, NBC (live)
Leigh Diffey is the lead announcer for NBC broadcasts alongside analysts Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy. Marty Snider, Kevin Lee, Kelli Stavast and Robin Miller are the pit reporters.
Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network broadcasts: Mark Jaynes is the chief announcer alongside analyst Anders Krohn with Jake Query and Nick Yeoman in the turns.
All NTT IndyCar Series races are broadcast live on the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network, Sirius 82, XM 82, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and on the INDYCAR Mobile app powered by NTT DATA. Live coverage of NTT IndyCar Series qualifying is available on Sirius 218, XM 82, IndyCar.com, indycarradio.com and the INDYCAR Mobile app.
NBC Sports Gold livestreaming: All NTT IndyCar Series practice sessions and qualifying will stream live on INDYCAR Pass on NBC Sports Gold, NBC Sports’ direct-to-consumer livestreaming product that will put more INDYCAR programming content at viewers’ fingertips than ever before.
In addition, full-broadcast, same-day replays of NTT IndyCar Series races, livestreams of Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires races, edited cutdowns of NTT IndyCar Series and Indy Lights races and more will be available.
At-track schedule (all times local):
Friday, May 31
10:55 a.m. – 11:40 a.m. – NTT IndyCar Series practice #1
2:50 – 3:35 p.m. – NTT IndyCar Series practice #2
3:40 – 4:20 p.m. – NTT IndyCar Series warmup/pit stop practice
Saturday, June 1
10:45 – 11:15 a.m. – Race 1 qualifying for NTT P1 Award (two groups/12 minutes each), NBCSN, noon ET (taped)
2:59 p.m. – Driver introductions
3:43 p.m. – Command to start engines
3:50 p.m. – Chevrolet Dual in Detroit #1 (70 laps/164.5 miles), NBC (live)
Sunday, June 2
10:45 – 11:15 a.m. – Race 2 qualifying for NTT P1 Award (two groups/12 minutes each), NBCSN (live)
2:55 p.m. – Driver introductions
3:43 p.m. – Command to start engines
3:50 p.m. – Chevrolet Dual in Detroit #2 (70 laps/164.5 miles), NBC (live)
Header image by Christopher Owens/INDYCAR.
Open-Wheels coverage of the 2019 month of May at Indianapolis is presented by Driven 2 Save Lives. Driven 2 Save Lives, an entity of the Indiana Donor Network, is a program that utilizes motorsports as a platform to encourage race fans to become organ donors. Currently, there are 114,000 individuals that are waiting for a life-saving organ transplant. Register as an organ, tissue, and eye donor at Driven2SaveLives.org/register and follow Driven2SaveLives on Facebook and Twitter.