IndyCars - Toronto: Big show in the shadow of the Princes' Gate

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Each year at this time the IndyCars head into Canada for their one international event as they race on the streets of Toronto, Ontario, Canada to do the Honda Indy Toronto.
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The circuit is a very challenging street course laid out in Toronto’s Exhibition Place - the publicly-owned entertainment and exhibition district near downtown, fronted by the magnificent multi-columned Princes’ Gate, named for Prince Edward, the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII), and Prince George (later the Duke of Kent).

The layout changed just a little bit in 2016 in order to accommodate a new hotel, by moving the pit lane to the north side of the front straight, necessitating that it curve around Turns 10 and 11. The 11-turn circuit boasts a great slowly-curving straight after Turn 2 that leads to the heart-breaker at Turn 3, where all that speed is funneled into a 90-degree+ corner that can barely contain one car. This track ALWAYS produces thrills.

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Area fans always get a great show and this weekend will be no different, with no less than TEN races scheduled. They will include:

NASCAR Pinty’s Series - 1 race on Saturday
IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada - 2 races on Saturday & Sunday
USF2000 - 2 races on Saturday & Sunday
Pro Mazda - 2 races on Saturday & Sunday
Indy Lights - 2 races on Saturday & Sunday

…and, of course, the IndyCars will race on Sunday.

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Let’s take a look at all that support racing…

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NASCAR Pinty’s Series - This is Canada’s top stock car series, with a 12-race season of competition throughout the great North, using stockers from Dodge, Ford and Chevrolet. No current IndyCar guys compete in this series but former CART driver Alex Tagliani is a series regular as is former CART driver Andrew Ranger. Andrew, in fact, has TWICE been Champion of the series, holds the most WINS ever with 23, and just WON the last race (the 3rd of the season), at Chaudiere, Quebec. We’ll keep and eye on Alex and Andrew to see how they do.

Andrew Ranger, his family and his ride

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Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada - This one-make series using Porsche’s 991 Cup car regularly produces great GT SportsCar drivers, as does the “USA” iteration of the series. Among the stars in Cup Challenge Canada are Canadians Zacharie Robichon, Remo Ruscitti, Stefan Rzadzinski and Roman de Angelis - all very stout and very talented. Roman also competes regularly in Cup Challenge USA and is currently 2nd in the points, there. The only IndyCar guy here is Stefan Rzadzinski, who has 30 drives in USF2000, Pro Mazda and Indy Lights between 2011 and 2013, starting his career in open-wheel. We’ll keep an eye on Stefan and see how he does, this weekend.

Stefan Rzadzinski in his # 8 for DFC Motorsport / Speedstar Motorsport

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continued…

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Support racing…(part 2)…

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USF2000 - This is the first step on the Mazda Road to Indy ladder system that develops IndyCar drivers and the cars will often be the first winged car with slicks that these young drivers will try. Despite their size, the racing is fast and furious with typically huge, international fields. Such will be the case at Toronto. The cars were replaced with an entirely new version in 2017, the Tatuus USF-17, and it has been a wonder, breaking records at all the series venues. Gifted with 175 hp from its 2.0 liter Mazda MZR inline 4 cylinder, the transmissions are paddle-shifted 6-speed sequential boxes and the brakes are ZR24 4-piston calipers, front and rear, from Performance Friction, with a driver-adjustable brake bias - It’s all great stuff to learn to race with.The current points leader is Floridian Kyle Kirkwood for Cape Motorsports who is running away with the title, with 5 WINS - the last 4 in a row. Unless he has some bad luck soon, it will be hard to catch him.

Kyle Kirkwood

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Pro Mazda - This is the middle car on the ladder. Entirely new for this year, it uses the same chassis as the Tatuus-USF17 but comes equipped with a much more powerful engine, much bigger tires and brakes and more wings, creating more downforce. In this iteration the car is called the Tatuus PM-18. Even MORE than the USF2000 car, the PM-18 is heads and tails above the car it replaced and it too is shattering track records - sometimes by more than 4 seconds! The field is FULL of very talented kids from all over the globe, wanting to get in on the new car. Any one of ten series drivers at a minimum is capable of a WIN on any given weekend. The points leader coming to Toronto is Canadian rookie Parker Thompson, from Red Deer, Alberta, driving for Exclusive Autosport, a Canada-based team. In the 6 previous outings Parker has had at Toronto, in USF2000, he has 4 podiums, including 3 WINS. This is important to him. This is home.

Parker Thompson

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Indy Lights - The Lights are the top step on the ladder and a fitting stepping stone to the big cars. The Dallara IL-15 was new in 2015, replacing a decades-old chassis. It has a 450 hp Mazda 2.0 liter turbo-charged engine that is equipped with “push-to-pass” - the button on the steering wheel that releases additional turbo boost for a limited time, adding 50 additional ponies to the engine - just like on the big cars. The tires, wheels, brakes and downforce are all bigger and more than Pro Mazda, as are all the electronics, making the IL-15 a great place to not only train drivers but also their race engineers. The series drivers are superb talents and the proof of that is that so many current IndyCar drivers are very recent Indy Lights drivers. The points leader coming to Toronto is American teenager Colton Herta - son of IndyCar great Bryan Herta - but hot on his heels, and WINNER at the last race in Iowa, is Mexican teen Pato O’Ward. The boys are only 8 points apart, with 4 WINS each. Both drive for Andretti in the Lights

Colton Herta for Andretti Steinbrenner

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Friday will be a very busy day, with practice for all series racing this weekend, and some qualifying as well. Let’s get this thing GOING!

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Friday morning at Toronto - The practice begins with Pro Mazda first out…

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Practice is that time when the driver and the car engineer work to maximize the car for the particular track configuration, the current track conditions and the expected weather of the weekend. With the variability of the car, practice is essential to extracting the best from it on any given race day. At Toronto this weekend, the weather may include some rain on Saturday, but Sunday will be dry, making practice even more important.

The first series out to practice bright and early were the gang from Pro Mazda, with 12 cars making their appearance. This will be their one and only practice session of the weekend.

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Here was the order of speed for Pro Mazda’s P-1 session, with times for the TOP FIVE: [R] denotes rookie

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1 - Rinus VeeKay [R]), Juncos Racing - time of 01:10.0915s for a speed of 91.732mph

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2 - Sting Ray Robb, Team Pelfrey - time of 01:10.1983s for a speed of 91.592mph

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3 - Parker Thompson [R], Exclusive Autosport - time of 01:10.3951s for a speed of 91.336mph

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4 - David Malukas [R], BN Racing - time of 01:10.4041s for a speed of 91.336mph

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5 - Harrison Scott [R], RP Motorsport Racing - time of 01:10.6308s for a speed of 91.031mph

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6 - Oliver Askew [R], Cape Motorsports
7 - Rob Megennis [R], Juncos Racing
8 - Andres Gutierrez [R], Team Pelfrey
9 - Raul Guzman [R], RP Motorsport Racing
10 - Carlos Cunha, Juncos Racing

11 - Antonio Serravalle [R], Exclusive Autosport
12 - Kris Wright [R] BN Racing

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Notable:

  • Nederlander Rinus VeeKay (aka Rinus van Kalmthout) sits 2nd in the points to Parker Thompson, but is 46 points behind. He needs to have a great weekend and if Parker can fall on his face it would help a lot.

  • Brit Toby Sowery was in the 2nd BN Racing car at Road America and did great, with 2 P2s in his Pro Mazda debut, but it was a 2-and-done deal, with an eye towards a 2019 ride. Kris Wright is in the car this weekend. Kris is an American and currently leads the points in the IMSA Prototype Challenge series, driving for Extreme Speed Motorsports.

  • 15-year-old Antonio Serravalle is the youngest Pro Mazda driver and is the other Canadian in this group, along with Parker Thompson.

  • Nikita Lastochkin for Cape Motorsports did not put in a time, but he’s at the track. He either had a problem with his car or a problem with his transponder. We’ll try to run that down. Also not putting in a time was gentleman driver Charles Finelli for FatBoy Racing!

left to right, Kris Wright, Antonio Serravalle and Nikita Lastochkin

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Pro Mazda will come out to qualify for Race 1 of the weekend a bit later this morning. Next, the USF2000 series hold their practice…

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Friday morning at Toronto - The kids from USF2000 practice…

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Just as with Pro Mazda, the big crew from USF2000 will get only this one practice session before qualifying mid-day, today.

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Here was the order of speed for USF2000 in their P-1 session, with times for the TOP FIVE: [R] denotes rookie

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1 - Kyle Kirkwood [R], Cape Motorsports - time of 01:13.2848s for a speed of 87.734mph

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2 - Calvin Ming, Pabst Racing - time of 01:13.3124s for a speed of 87.701mph

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3 - Igor Fraga [R], Exclusive Autosport - time of 01:13.4215s for a speed of 87.571mph

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4 - Kaylen Frederick, Pabst Racing - time of 01:13.6620s for a speed of 87.285mph

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5 - Rasmus Lindh [R], Pabst Racing - time of 01:13.7619s for a speed of 87.167mph

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6 - Dakota Dickerson, ArmsUp Motorsports
7 - Lucas Kohl, Pabst Racing
8 - Darren Keane, Newman Wachs Racing
9 - Jose Sierra [R], DEForce Racing
10 - Keith Donegan [R], BN Racing

11 - Kory Enders, DEForce Racing
12 - Max Peichel [R], ArmsUp Motorsports
13 - Bruna Tomaselli, Team Pelfrey
14 - Danial Frost [R], Exclusive Autosport
15 - Russ McDonough [R], BN Racing
16 - Colin Kaminsky, DEForce Racing
17 - Julian Van der Watt [R], Team Pelfrey
18 - Oscar DeLuzuriaga [R], Newman Wachs Racing
19 - Kyle Dupell [R], Team Pelfrey

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Notable:

  • Everyone in this TOP FIVE belongs there. 3 of the 5 are from Pabst Racing, which explains why the team’s nickname is “the speed boys”. Especially hot at the moment is 16-year-old Kaylen Frederick, who can’t keep off the podiums.

  • Several series regulars did not post times, including Sabre Cook and Michael D’Irlando, both from Team BENIK, Alex Baron from Swan / RJB Motorsports, Mathias Soler-Obel from Sol. O Racing, Zach Holden from DEForce Racing and Jamie Caroline from BN Racing, who has been out for a few races, now.

  • Keith Donegan, the 2017 Mazda Road to Indy Shootout winner, seems to have made a permanent move from ArmsUp Motorsports, where he started the season, to BN Racing.

Keith Donegan

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USF2000 will qualify for Race 1 of the weekend at about Noon, today. Next up, the Porsche GT3 Cup boys practice…

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Friday morning at Toronto - Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada practice…

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The GT3 Cup boys are going to get 2 practice sessions today before they qualify on Saturday morning. This morning the TOP DAWG in the Platinum class was Remo Ruscitti in the # 96 for Open Road Racing with a time of 01:14.833s for a speed of 84.424mph. Remo beat out Zacharie Robichon in the # 98 for Mark Motors Racing by .105 seconds. Third fastest was Roman de Angelis, also for Mark Motors Racing in their # 78. Roman was .182 out from Remo.

Left to right, Remo Ruscitti, Zacharie Robichon and Roman de Angelis

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Our guy in Cup Challenge Canada, Stefan Rzadzinski, posted a P6 in the # 8 for DFC Motorsport / Speedstar Motorsport.

Stefan Rzadzinski

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The GT3 Cup boys will get a 2nd practice late today - last on-track activity of the day. Next, the Pro Mazda gang qualify for Race 1 of the weekend…

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Friday morning at Toronto - Pro Mazda qualify for Season Round 10…

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…which will be their 1st race of the weekend. In the Mazda Road to Indy the fields qualify for each race individually, rather than use a second-fastest time from a single session to grid a second race. This takes a bit more time, but it allows the teams to adjust their cars before qualifying for each race andtat improves the racing.

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Here is the way Pro Mazda will grid for Season Round 10, with times for the TOP SIX: [R] denotes rookie

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Row 1

Pole - Rinus VeeKay [R]), Juncos Racing - time of 01:07.9735s for a speed of 94.590mph

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P2 - David Malukas [R], BN Racing - time of 01:08.0495s for a speed of 94.484mph

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Row 2

P3 - Parker Thompson [R], Exclusive Autosport - time of 01:08.2282s for a speed of 94.237mph

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P4 - Sting Ray Robb, Team Pelfrey = time of 01:08.2953s for a speed of 94.144mph

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Row 3

P5 - Rob Megennis [R], Juncos Racing - time of 01:08.3467s for a speed of 94.073mph

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P6 - Raul Guzman [R], RP Motorsport Racing - time of 01:08.4693s for a speed of 93.905mph

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Row 4

P7 - Andres Gutierrez [R], Team Pelfrey
P8 - Oliver Askew [R], Cape Motorsports

Row 5

P9 - Harrison Scott [R], RP Motorsport Racing
P10 - Antonio Serravalle [R], Exclusive Autosport

Row 6

P11 - Carlos Cunha, Juncos Racing
P12 - Kris Wright [R] BN Racing

Row 7

P13 - Charles Finelli, BN Racing / FatBoy Racing!
P14 - Nikita Lastochkin, Cape Motorsports

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Notable:

  • Rinus VeeKay grabbed his 2nd pole of the season and at a time when he needs points desperately to catch Parker Thompson. He now holds the new track record. In fact, the TOP 12 drivers broke the old record. That’s how good the new Tatuus PM-18 car is.

  • Dave Malukas had a break-out weekend at Road America, WINNING both races. He is 4th in the points, but poised to advance.

  • Kris Wright had his best lap disallowed due to interference with someone else during qualifying.

  • Nikita Lastochkin is on the grid but again posted no time. We are still suspecting a transponder failure.

  • Carlos Cunha for Juncos Racing is 3rd in the points and typically does better than this effort. Harrison Scott for RP Motorsport Racing is also better than this, typically. We’ll have to keep an eye on both in the race.

Carlos Cunha (left) and Harrison Scott

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Race 1 for Pro Mazda will be run on Saturday, but they will qualify for Race 2, to be run on Sunday, later today. Next, the IndyCars hold their own first practice…

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Friday morning at Toronto - The IndyCars hold their first practice session of the weekend…

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…and they are already pushing hard, with a few cars over-cooking it.

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Here was the order of speed for the IndyCars P-1 session, with times for the TOP FIVE: [R] denotes rookie

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1 - Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing - time of 01:00.7474s for a speed of 105.842mph

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2 - Graham Rahal, Rahal Letterman Lanigan - time of 01:00.9385s for a speed of 105.510mph

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3 - Alexander Rossi, Andretti Autosport - time of 01:00.9786s for a speed of 105.510mph

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4 - Takuma Sato, Rahal Letterman Lanigan - time of 01:01.0050s for a speed of 105.395mph

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5 - Marco Andretti, Andretti Herta - time of 01:01.0492s for a speed of 105.318mph

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6 - Sebastien Bourdais, Dale Coyne Racing w/ Vasser/Sullivan
7 - Will Power, Team Penske
8 - Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti Autosport
9 - Matheus Leist [R], A.J. Foyt Enterprises
10 - Ed Jones, Chip Ganassi Racing

11- Robert Wickens [R], Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
12 - Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske
13 - Josef Newgarden, Team Penske
14 - Zach Veach [R], Andretti Autosport
15 - Tony Kanaan, A.J. Foyt Enterprises
16 - Spencer Pigot, Ed Carpenter Racing
17 - Max Chilton, Carlin
18 - James Hinchcliffe, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
19 - Zachary Claman DeMelo [R], Dale Coyne Racing
20 - Conor Daly, Harding Racing

21 - Jordan King [R], Ed Carpenter Racing
22 - Charlie Kimball, Carlin
23 - Rene Binder [R], Juncos Racing

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Notable:

  • Scott Dixon has WON this race twice before so his speed is no surprise. Other previous winners in this race will be Will Power with 3 WINS, Josef Newgarden with 2 WINS and Sebastien Bourdais with 2 WINS.

  • Conor Daly is in the Harding # 88 Chevrolet instead of Gabby Chaves. This is being billed as an audition for a possible 2nd seat in 2019 for the team and Chaves is not in trouble, we are told.

  • Alexander Rossi and Ryan Hunter-Reay both brushed walls during the practice and Jordan King, who will drive the # 20 Chevrolet for Ed Carpenter Racing, poked a tire barrier, but did little damage. His fun did bring out a yellow to retrieve him, however.

Left to right Conor Daly, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Jordan King

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The IndyCars will hold their P-2 session later this afternoon and things will change, due to information gleaned in this session. Next, the Pinty’s series gets to practice…

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Let’s hope this guy isn’t driving the pace car?

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Friday morning at Toronto - The Pinty’s series stockers come out for their practice…

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This will be the one and only practice for the NASCAR boys, who will hold qualifying a bit later today.

The TOP TIME was posted by Anthony Simone in the # 95 Innovative Plumbing Dodge with a time of 01:17.035 seconds for a speed of 82.015mph. He bested CART alum Andrew Ranger in the # 27 Dodge by .208 seconds. Third fastest was Marc-Antoine Camirand in the # 22 Chevy. Cart alum Alex Tagliani posted P4 in the # 18 Chevrolet and Kevin Lacroix was P5 in the # 74 Dodge.
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TOP DAWG Anthony Simone looking for his first series WIN.

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The NASCAR Pinty’s series will qualify for their Saturday race late this afternoon. Next, USF2000 qualify for their Race 1 of the weekend…

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Friday Noon at Toronto - USF2000 are qualified for Season Round 8…

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Following qualifying a number of penalties were handed out for speeding under yellow and that shook things up quite a bit. As a result…

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Here is the way USF2000 will grid for Season Round 8, with times for the TOP SIX: [R] denotes rookie

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Row 1

Pole - Dakota Dickerson, ArmsUp Motorsports - time of 01:12.6620s for a speed of 88.486mph

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P2 - Kaylen Frederick, Pabst Racing - time of 01:12.7311s for a speed of 88.402mph

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Row 2

P3 - Kyle Kirkwood [R], Cape Motorsports - time of 01:12.7807s for a speed of 88.342mph

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P4 - Rasmus Lindh [R], Pabst Racing - time of 01:13.0570s for a speed of 88.008mph

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Row 3

P5 - Darren Keane, Newman Wachs Racing - time of 01:13.1657s for a speed of 87.877mph

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P6 - Keith Donegan [R], BN Racing - time of 01:13.3103s for a speed of 87.704mph

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Row 4

P7 - Calvin Ming, Pabst Racing
P8 - Jose Sierra [R], DEForce Racing

Row 5

P9 - Julian Van der Watt [R], Team Pelfrey
P10 - Kory Enders, DEForce Racing

Row 6

P11 - Danial Frost [R], Exclusive Autosport
P12 - Oscar DeLuzuriaga [R], Newman Wachs Racing

Row 7

P13 - Bruna Tomaselli, Team Pelfrey
P14 - Russ McDonough [R], BN Racing

Row 8

P15 - Colin Kaminsky, DEForce Racing
P16 - Kyle Dupell [R], Team Pelfrey

Row 9

P17 - Igor Fraga [R], Exclusive Autosport
P18 - Lucas Kohl, Pabst Racing

Row 10

P19 - Max Peichel [R], ArmsUp Motorsports

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Notable:

  • Initially, the TOP SIX spots on the grid were, in order, Kyle Kirkwood, Kaylen Frederick, Dakota Dickerson, Rasmus Lindh, Calvin Ming, and Jose Sierra. Then, immediately following qualifying the race stewards handed out a penalty - loss of the best lap - to 11 cars for exceeding the local yellow speed, and that resulted in the grid you see above.

  • The drivers penalized were : Kyle Kirkwood, Rasmus Lindh, Kaylen Frederick, Calvin Ming, Jose Sierra, Kory Enders, Colin Kaminsky, Keith Donegan, Danial Frost, Julian Van der Watt and Darren Keane.

  • There were two yellows during qualifying, as Lucas Kohl for Pabst hit the wall in Turn 7 and three laps after resuming qualifying Igor Fraga for Exclusive Autosport hit the wall in Turn 11, just after posting the fastest lap up to then. Both should be able to race on Saturday.

Lucas Kohl (left) and Igor Fraga - in the walls

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The race for this grid will be on Saturday morning. Next the Indy Lights come out for their practice…

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Friday afternoon at Toronto - The Lights take to the track for practice…

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As with the other two Mazda Road to Indy series, the Lights will get this one practice to be ready for qualifying on Saturday morning, so the teams will be trying to get both a race set-up nailed down, but also be ready to qualify - it’s an engineer’s nightmare and a great challenge.

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Here was the order of speed for the Lights P-1 session, with times for all: [R] denotes rookie

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1 - Victor Franzoni [R], Juncos Racing - time of 01:05.3271s for a speed of 98.422mph

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2 - Santiago Urrutia, Belardi Auto Racing - time of 01:05.4408s for a speed of 98.251mph

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3 - Pato O’Ward [R], Andretti Autosport - time of 01:05.4580s for a speed of 98.225mph

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4 - Colton Herta, Andretti Steinbrenner - time of 01:05.5836s for a speed of 98.037mph

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5 - Ryan Norman, Andretti Autosport - time of 01:05.8313s for a speed of 97.668mph

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6 - Aaron Telitz, Belardi Auto Racing - time of 01:06.0672s for a speed of 97.319mph

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7 - Dalton Kellett, Andretti Autosport - time of 01:06.1469s for a speed of 97.202mph

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Notable:

  • All 7 cars were within 0.8 seconds of each other. That is remarkable parity on this difficult track.

  • Dalton Kellett is the Canadian, here. In fact, he’s a Toronto lad. He is a graduate of Queen’s University, Ontario, Canada, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering Physics (Materials Option).

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The Lights will qualify for Race 1 early Saturday morning. Next the IndyCar resume practice with their P-2 session…

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Friday afternoon at Toronto - The big cars come out for another practice session…

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The P-2 session was remarkably fast. Every driver in the field went faster in P-2 than in P-1 and no less than 13 of them went UNDER 1 minute for a lap.

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Here was the order of speed of the IndyCars in the P-2 session, with times for the TOP FIVE: [R] denotes rookie

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1 - Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing - time of 00:59.0751s for a speed of 108.838mph

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2 - Takuma Sato, Rahal Letterman Lanigan - time of 00:59.5117s for a speed of 108.039mph

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3 - Marco Andretti, Andretti Herta - time of 00:59.5277s for a speed of 108.010mph

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4 - Graham Rahal, Rahal Letterman Lanigan - time of 00:59.5308s for a speed of 108.005mph

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5 - Alexander Rossi, Andretti Autosport - time of 00:59.5846s for a speed of 107.907mph

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6 - Spencer Pigot, Ed Carpenter Racing
7 - Josef Newgarden, Team Penske
8 - Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti Autosport
9 - Sebastien Bourdais, Dale Coyne Racing w/ Vasser/Sullivan
10 - James Hinchcliffe, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports

11 - Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske
12 - Ed Jones, Chip Ganassi Racing
13 - Robert Wickens [R], Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
14 - Tony Kanaan, A.J. Foyt Enterprises
15 - Zach Veach [R], Andretti Autosport
16 - Will Power, Team Penske
17 - Conor Daly, Harding Racing
18 - Charlie Kimball, Carlin
19 - Matheus Leist [R], A.J. Foyt Enterprises
20 - Rene Binder [R], Juncos Racing

21 - Jordan King [R], Ed Carpenter Racing
22 - Max Chilton, Carlin
23 - Zachary Claman DeMelo [R], Dale Coyne Racing

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Notable:

  • The TOP FIVE cars are all Hondas. The fastest Chevy was Spencer Pigot in P6, coming off his best finish ever at Iowa, last weekend - a P2.

  • Graham Rahal had a spin on the front straight but was able to keep from hitting anything.

  • The three Canadians in this field are James Hinchcliffe, Robert Wickens and Zachary Claman DeMelo. Hinch and Robbie are both Ontario lads while Zachary is from Montreal.

The “eh team” for the IndyCars, (left to right) James Hinchcliffe, Robert Wickens and Zachary Claman DeMelo:

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The IndyCars are scheduled for a 3rd practice early in the morning on Saturday and then qualifying in the early afternoon. Next up, the Pro Mazda gang qualify for their 2nd race of the weekend…

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Sadly I couldn’t make it this year iv been once before its a great event.

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Friday afternoon at Toronto - Pro Mazda qualifies for Season Round 11…

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Although they have yet to do Race 1 of the weekend the Pro Mazda gang came out to qualify for Race 2 of the weekend, late in the day, and a big shake-up happened.

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Here is the way Pro Mazda will grid for Season Round 11, with times for the TOP SIX: [R] denotes rookie

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Row 1

Pole - Rinus VeeKay [R]), Juncos Racing - time of 01:08.2759s for a speed of 94.171mph

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P2 - David Malukas [R], BN Racing - time of 01:08.4887s for a speed of 93.878mph

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Row 2

P3 - Rob Megennis [R], Juncos Racing - time of 01:08.5650s for a speed of 93.774mph

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P4 - Harrison Scott [R], RP Motorsport Racing - time of 01:08.5775s for a speed of 93.757mph

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Row 3

P5 - Sting Ray Robb, Team Pelfrey - time of 01:08.6512s for a speed of 93.656mph

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P6 - Oliver Askew [R], Cape Motorsports - time of 01:08.7423s for a speed of 93.532mph

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Row 4

P7 - Andres Gutierrez [R], Team Pelfrey
P8 - Carlos Cunha, Juncos Racing

Row 5

P9 - Nikita Lastochkin, Cape Motorsports
P10 - Raul Guzman [R], RP Motorsport Racing

Row 6

P11 - Raul Guzman [R], RP Motorsport Racing
P12 - Kris Wright [R] BN Racing

Row 7

P13 - Charles Finelli, BN Racing / FatBoy Racing!
P14 - Parker Thompson [R], Exclusive Autosport

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Notable:

  • Rinus Veekay did what he needed to do in getting his 2nd pole of the day, but he was helped in his chase to catch Parker Thompson in the points when Thompson slowed and stopped on his first lap with a mechanical difficulty that took him out of qualifying. He posted no time and will have to start last in Race 2.

  • Don’t count Thompson out, however. He had to come from way behind twice at Road America and he was able to still end up P4 in both races.

  • Nikita Lastochkin finally showed up on the time charts, so he will be racing, after all.

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This race will be run on Sunday. Next, the Pinty’s series guys qualify for their Saturday race…

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Friday afternoon at Toronto - The NASCAR Pinty’s series guys qualify…

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…and our guys did GREAT! First, on the pole is IndyCar alum Alex Tagliani in the # 18 Rona / EpiPen Chevrolet when he set a time of 01:16.893 seconds for a speed of 82.166mph, to take his first pole of the season. P2 will be Marc-Antoine Camirand in the # 22 Chevrolet, 0.132 seconds off Alex. IndyCar alum Andrew Ranger made P3 in his # 27 Dodge.

P4 will be Kevin Lacroix, but he will have to start in a back-up car, as just after posting his P4 time he stuffed the # 74 Dodge hard coming out of Turn 7, doing extensive damage. Anthony Simone rounded out the TOP FIVE in the # 95 Dodge but will also have go to the rear of the field following a crash in Turn 3. Row 3 is completed by Gary Klutt in the # 59 Dodge.

Alex Tagliani waves to the crowd after his pole

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Notable:

  • Alex WON this race in 2016 so he is looking for a repeat. Alex is from Lachenaie, Quebec.

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The Pinty’s series race will be in the mid-afternoon on Saturday - 1 hour of racing. Next, the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada boys hold their 2nd practice…

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Friday afternoon at Toronto - The Porsche Cup Challenge gang hold another practice…

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This was the 2nd practice of the day for the Cup Challenge Canada guys. It was the same 3 guys in the TOP THREE but in reverse order from this morning.

TOP DAWG in the afternoon was young Roman de Angelis for Mark Motors Racing, taking the # 78 cup car to a time of 01:12.637s for a speed of 86.976mph. This was the fastest time posted in GT3 Cup on the day. Roman beat out Zacharie Robichon in the # 98 car for Mark Motors Racing by a healthy .396 seconds. P3 was Remo Ruscitti in the # 96 for Open Road Racing.

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Three on top, left to right, Roman de Angelis, Zacharie Robichon and Remo Ruscitti

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Mazda Road to Indy alum Stefan Rzadzinski posted time for P8 in the # 8 for DFC Motorsport / Speedstar Motorsport.

Stefan Rzadzinski

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The GT3 Cup Challenge Canada guys will qualify for their Race 1 on Saturday morning, then hold that race on Saturday afternoon - last on-track activity of the day…as was this practice.

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IndyCar has released a Day 1 highlights reel…

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Saturday morning at Toronto - USF2000 qualify for Season Round 9…

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The kids of USF2000 were the first out on the track today to qualify for their Race 2 of the weekend, to be run on Sunday.

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Here is the way USF2000 will grid for Season Round 9, with times for the TOP SIX: [R] denotes rookie

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Row 1

Pole - Kaylen Frederick, Pabst Racing - time of 01:10.7699s for a speed of 90.852mph

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P2 - Keith Donegan [R], ArmsUp Motorsports - time of 01:10.7782s for a speed of 90.842mph
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Row 2

P3 - Rasmus Lindh [R], Pabst Racing - time of 01:10.9299s for a speed of 90.647mph
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P4 - Dakota Dickerson, ArmsUp Motorsports - time of 01:11.1801s for a speed of 90.329mph
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Row 3

P5 - Kyle Kirkwood [R], Cape Motorsports - time of 01:11.2236s for a speed of 90.273mph
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P6 - Igor Fraga [R], Exclusive Autosport - time of 01:11.4491s for a speed of 89.989mph

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Row 4

P7 - Calvin Ming, Pabst Racing
P8 - Lucas Kohl, Pabst Racing

Row 5

P9 - Julian Van der Watt [R], Team Pelfrey
P10 - Darren Keane, Newman Wachs Racing

Row 6

P11 - Kory Enders, DEForce Racing
P12 - Danial Frost [R], Exclusive Autosport

Row 7

P13 - Colin Kaminsky, DEForce Racing
P14 - Russ McDonough [R], BN Racing

Row 8

P15 - Bruna Tomaselli, Team Pelfrey
P16 - Kyle Dupell [R], Team Pelfrey

Row 9

P17 - Oscar DeLuzuriaga [R], Newman Wachs Racing
P18 - Jose Sierra [R], DEForce Racing

Row 10

P19 - Max Peichel [R], ArmsUp Motorsports

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Notable:

  • This is Kaylen Frederick’s first series pole and he shattered Oliver Askew’s old track record to get it.

  • This is MRTI Shootout winner Keith Donegan’s best series start. His recent move from ArmsUp Motorsports to BN Racing has been splendid for him. He’s beginning to show the form that WON him the 2017 Shootout.

  • The usually swift Jose Sierra only put in 1 lap and it wasn’t at speed. Max Peichel put in no time at all.

Jose Sierra (left) and Max Peichel - troubles

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USF2000 is scheduled for their first race of the weekend later this morning. Next up, the Indy Lights qualify for their first race of the weekend…

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Saturday morning at Toronto - the Indy Lights qualify for Season Round 11…

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The Lights were the next out to qualify and this session will be gridding their first race of the weekend, to be run late this morning.

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Here is the way Indy Lights will grid for Season Round 11, with times for all: [R] denotes rookie

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Row 1

Pole - Colton Herta, Andretti Steinbrenner - time of 01:03.6848s for a speed of 100.960mph

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P2 - Pato O’Ward [R], Andretti Autosport - time of 01:03.6848s for a speed of 100.606mph
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Row 2

P3 - Santiago Urrutia, Belardi Auto Racing - time of 01:03.9090s for a speed of 100.606mph
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P4 - Aaron Telitz, Belardi Auto Racing - time of 01:04.0519s for a speed of 100.381mph
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Row 3

P5 - Victor Franzoni [R], Juncos Racing - time of 01:04.2924s for a speed of 100.006mph
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P6 - Ryan Norman, Andretti Autosport - time of 01:04.3793s for a speed of 99.871mph
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Row 4

P7 - Dalton Kellett, Andretti Autosport - time of 01:04.6394s for a speed of 99.469mph
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Notable:

  • Colton beat his own track record. He in fact shattered it by more than 1.3 seconds!

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The Lights will race just before Noon today. Next, the Porsche Cup guys qualify…

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Saturday morning at Toronto - The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada crew qualify…

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This one qualifying session will determine the grid for both Race 1 and Race 2 of the weekend, as Porsche GT3 Cup uses the 2nd fastest lap for each driver to grid Race 2 of a weekend.

On the pole for BOTH Race 1 and Race 2 will be points-leader Zacharie Robichon in the # 98 car for Mark Motors Racing with a time of 01:11.702s for a speed of 88.110mph for Race 1. For Race 2 Zach pulled down a time of 01:12.147 seconds.

Pole for Race 1 and Race 2, Zacharie Robichon

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P2 for BOTH races will be Roman de Angelis in the # 78 for Mark Motors Racing, with a time of 01:12.222s for a speed of 87.476mph for Race 1. For Race 2 Roman’s time was 01:12.515 seconds. Roman comes to Toronto 2nd in the points in Cup Challenge Canada. The great thing is he is also 2nd in the points in Cup Challenge USA, where he also competes.

P2 start for both races Roman de Angelis

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Starting P3 for both races will be Remo Ruscitti in the # 96 car for Open Road Racing. Remo’s Race 1 time was 01:12.467 seconds for a speed of 87.180mph. His Race 2 time was 01:13.172 seconds.

P3 on the grid for both races Remo Ruscitti

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Our guy in Cup Challenge Canada, Stefan Rzadzinski, will start Race 1 from P7 and Race 2 from P5 in his # 8 for DFC Motorsport / Speedstar Motorsport. Stefan is currently 4th in the points, behind Remo.

Stefan Rzadzinski - 4th in points

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Porsche Cup will hold their first race later today - the last on-track event of the day. Next, the IndyCars hold their P-3 practice session…

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