What: Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix / Race 7 of the 2023 NTT IndyCar Series
Where: Streets of downtown Detroit, Michigan.
When: Sunday, June 4, 3:00 PM ET
The contrast couldn’t be greater. After the 220mph-plus, momentum-is-everything challenge of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the NTT IndyCar Series is back to slam on the brakes, wrestle arms on the wheel and hit the throttle for a full-on street battle at the Detroit Chevrolet Grand Prix.
But after 16 years on Belle Isle’s parkland roads, it’s all different and all new, as the brawl moves a few miles west to downtown Motown and a 2,645-mile nine-turn track that wraps around the skyline-defining GM Renaissance Center. of Detroit meanders and skirts the Detroit River. It’s a return to some of the same city streets that hosted Formula One from 1982 to ’88 and CART from ’89 to ’91, with some familiar challenges and a few new twists. And for the IndyCar Series teams and drivers, it’s a journey into the unknown, no matter how many miles they’ve covered in the simulator.
Based on the city’s street grid, the track has its fair share of 90-degree turns, but a long blast of nearly 200 mph on the Jefferson Avenue straight, followed by tremendously hard braking into the double 90 “hairpin” of Turn 3 and the best overtaking spot means setup will be a compromise and a puzzle that teams have just two sessions and 150 minutes to unlock before diving into Saturday afternoon’s qualifying session.
Throw in the unforgiving walls that wrap around the track and it will take a weekend without mistakes to even stand a chance of battling for pole or victory in Sunday’s 100-lap, 264.5-mile race.
“(It becomes) interesting because there is no previous data for us on this new track,” Andretti Autosport’s Colton Herta comments. “It looks like this updated layout offers some good overtaking opportunities, and the track is also mostly 90-degree left and right turns.”
Adds Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden, who heads to Motor City after his last lap win of the 107th Indianapolis 500: “I think you have to make five or six lanes wide (a pass in Turn 3) happen. I think the racing action will be very intense at that point, but also the (necessary) technique will be important; trying to figure out how to get the most out of the car in those corners. That will be a crucial part of our first year here.”
And in another fascinating twist, with a premium space in downtown Detroit, the pit lane splits in two, with half the 27-car field on the left and half on the right, before merging back together at the leaving the pits. Do two go in one? Sunday afternoon we know…
You can watch all practice and qualifying on Peacock on Friday, June 2 and Saturday, June 3, while NBC takes over for race day on Sunday, June 4. And to get even closer, grab the best seat in the house with the INDYCAR app powered by NTT DATA and its 14 days of race live onboard cameras.
Friday, June 2 / 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM ET – Practice 1 – Peacock
Saturday, June 3 / 9:05 AM – 10:05 AM ET – Practice 2 – Peacock
Saturday, June 3 / 1:20 PM – 2:50 PM ET – Qualifying – Peacock
Sunday, June 4 / 10:00 AM – 10:30 AM ET – Heat up – Peacock
Sunday, June 4 / 3:00 PM – 6:00 PM ET – RACE — NBC, Peacock
• All sessions and the race are also available as audio commentary on SiriusXM and INDYCAR Radio.
Ride along with the INDYCAR app powered by NTT DATA
14 drivers take you into the action and carry cameras in the car. During the race, you can livestream them all using the INDYCAR app, powered by NTT DATA. You choose who you ride with and you can change drivers at any time. The app is free to download for fans around the world and you can learn more about it HERE. If you’re not already on board, you can take your viewing experience to a whole new level HERE.
The action aboard the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix is…
Joseph Newgarden / No. 2Team PenskeChevrolet
First of all, forget all the rumors about the Indy 500 winner’s “hangover” – Newgarden will be even more motivated by his victory at the Brickyard (below) and, to get back on track, will try to close the 37-point gap to championship leader Alex Palou. Team Penske’s asset is a six-time street course race winner, and if the No. 2 Chevy can offload strong, he could become the first Indy 500 champion since Arie Luyendyk, way back in 1997 at Texas Motor Speedway, his next race start.
2023 Indianapolis 500 – Pace car
Colton Harta / No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda
Six races on the books, but with no podiums and only 10th in points to his name, Detroit could be a crucial weekend for Herta. The Andretti Autosport driver knows he has a car that can handle the work on the road and on the street, but as he told RACER: “We’ve been fast, but nothing has really worked in our hands.” He qualified on the front row of the grid in St. Pete’s 2023 season opener and was running strong until he tangled with Will Power before finishing seventh on the grid over a fourth-place finish at Long Beach. If he completes a full weekend in the third street race of the year, Herta could be one of the drivers to beat.
Alexander Rossi / No. 7 Arrow McLaren Chevy
A strong May at Indy was further confirmation that Rossi’s integration into Arrow McLaren after seven seasons with Andretti Autosport is working well, finishing third in the Indy GP and fifth in the “500”. Last year, he mounted a late-r
ace charge, finishing just 1.0027 seconds behind winner Will Power in the Detroit-Belle Isle swansong. Can he go one place better in 2023?
Pato O’Ward / No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet
O’Ward loved the challenge of Detroit’s Belle Isle street circuit, and you get the impression that he will also thrive within the walls of its downtown successor. The Arrow McLaren ace only lost a victory in the season opener at St. Pete after a brief engine failure late in the race, and should be a major factor again this weekend. After three second places in the first six races, we place the spectacular Mexican as the favorite to take his first win of 2023.
willpower / No. 12Team PenskeChevrolet
Power’s only win of his mega-consistent, championship-winning 2022 campaign came at the final Detroit-Belle Isle race (below), when he started 16th, but ended up leading 55 of the 70 laps. With the move to centre, can the Aussie pick up where he left off at Motown and bring momentum to a title defense that sees him just ninth in points after six races?
/ No. 28 Andretti Autosport Honda
Grosjean’s Street Course stats so far in 2023: pole and 31 laps led at St. Pete ahead of meeting Scott McLaughlin, then third on the grid and second at Long Beach. We’re still waiting for the Frenchman to confirm the seemingly inevitable and take his first win in the NTT IndyCar Series, and the streets of Detroit could well be where he finally does it.
Scott McLaughlin / No. 3Team PenskeChevrolet
He led a race-high 37 laps at St. Pete, before spending a quieter weekend on the streets of Long Beach, but McLaughlin knows how to win an NTT IndyCar Series race on a street course (see St. Pete, 2022 ) and has the proven ability to start strong and stay strong on tracks that are new to him. Expect race engineer Ben Bretzman and the No. 3 Team Penske crew give him a strong car straight from the hauler, and watch for the sixth-in points Kiwi to take care of the rest.
Felix Rosenqvist / No. 6 Arrow McLaren Chevy
It was “coulda, woulda, shoulda” for Rosenqvist at the Indy 500, the Andretti Autosport driver who led for 33 laps before crashing into the wall on lap 184 and caught by Kyle Kirkwood in the scariest incident of the day . But having put that behind him, the Swede is moving into Detroit on a wave of momentum – including three straight top-10 finishes ahead of the “500” – and could be there with teammates Pato O’Ward and Alexander Rossi in the battle for the sharp end.
Kyle Kirkwood / No. 27 Andretti Autosport Honda
Can Kirkwood take consecutive street course wins after his first career NTT IndyCar Series win at the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach in April (below)? The Andretti Autosport driver will certainly feature in the series’ first visit to downtown Detroit – and if you want a precedent from the past, check out Kirkwood’s ultra-dominant 2018 USF2000 season and his impressive ability to get out of the blocks quickly. on tracks he has never raced before.
Conor Daley / No. 20 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevy
Another strong run in the Indy 500 could reinforce the perception that Daly is at his best on the ovals of the NTT IndyCar Series, but don’t underestimate his street and road prowess. His career-best result came just a few miles east of this weekend’s venue — second at Belle Isle in 2016 — and the level playing field of a new track could put him and the No. 20 ECR Chevy somewhere in the frame .
Graham Rahal / No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda
After making numerous storylines at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway – mostly for all the wrong reasons – Rahal is back in RLL’s No. 15 Honda after a short jaunt with Dreyer & Reinbold’s Nr. 24Chevy. A brand new racetrack could bolster some of Rahal and his team’s relative strengths – most notably a returning ability to make strong strategic decisions on the fly – while closing the gap to championship-chasing teams when it comes to finding of an effective arrangement. out of the box. Motown has been a happy hunting ground for Graham in the past, so we hope the change of venues will continue the theme.
Christian Lundgaard / No. 45 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda
Sixth at Barber for Lundgaard, followed by pole position and fourth on the IMS road course speak of progress at RLL. Continue the trendline and this weekend could well be a big weekend for the 2022 Rookie of the Year. Same as for his teammate, Graham Rahal, an all-new circuit and RLL’s strategic chops in a place likely to receive multiple cautions. the stakes could be a boon for the Dane (below). Let’s call it a top-five finish here… and maybe even more?
Simon Pagenaud / No. 60 Meyer Shank Racing Honda
With a 25th-place finish in points and a season-best finish of just 15th, Pagenaud and his No. 60 MSR Honda team are still looking for a result that signals a turnaround in their collective fortunes. Will a brand new song be a help or a hindrance? Friday afternoon we start to get our answers. Fact is, the Frenchman is still one of the best street courses out there, and MSR hasn’t forgotten how to race. But until it clicks again, a top-10 in Detroit would be a relative win for the combo.
Augustine Canapino / No. 78 Juncos Hollinger Racing Chevrolet
Recent results don’t tell the full story of how well Canapino is transitioning from tin-top racing to one of the fastest and most demanding open-wheel series in the world. The poise and speed of the Argentine driver during the month of May was a revelation, and the leveling of a new track for everyone this weekend could set the stage for a breakaway weekend. Don’t be surprised to see the Juncos Hollinger Racing rookie battle it out for a top-10 finish.
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Story originally appeared on Racer