IndyCar returns to Gateway in 2017 schedule

BY JIM MILLER
WEEKLY INDYCAR WRITER

race car tire - generic RESIZED   INDYCAR announced the 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series delivering a 17-race season that provides continuity, adds a new event at Gateway Motorsports Park and confirms a multi-year agreement with Watkins Glen International. The series calendar expands upon the return of all venues on the 2016 schedule and consists of a total of six events on ovals, six on permanent road courses and five on temporary street circuits.  All locations have contracts that go through the 2018 season.

Locally, the addition of Gateway Motorsports Park marks a return for the Verizon IndyCar Series, which last competed at the venue in 2003.

“Today is a monumental day for the people of the St. Louis region,” said Curtis Francois, owner of Gateway Motorsports Park in Madison, Ill. “I am proud of the progress we’ve made at my hometown track. I knew someday we would be making an announcement like this because I have such confidence in the people of this region and their commitment to great sporting events. More than a dozen track operators around the country sought this INDYCAR race for their communities. I firmly believe we came out on top because of the energy, loyalty and commitment to great sports that sports fans of all kinds demonstrate each day in this community.”

“I think it’s great that we’re going back to Gateway,” Helio Castroneves said. “Personally, I like it because I’ve had success there but also that I used to race for Hogan (a St. Louis-based Indy car team in 1999), which makes it a special place to me. I won there with Team Penske in 2003 and there was an all-Brazilian podium with Tony (Kanaan) and Gil (de Ferran). I remember that we had a really good car. I think we started from the pole and led a lot of laps. I know that the people of St. Louis will get a heck of a show. The track isn’t a typical oval with the irregular shape, which makes it challenging. It’s a track well suited for INDYCAR. I’m looking forward to it.”

2017 Verizon IndyCar Series Schedule:

  • March 12: Streets of St. Petersburg/ St. Petersburg, FL (street)
  • April 9: Streets of Long Beach/Long Beach, CA (street)
  • April 23: Barber Motorsports Park/Birmingham, AL (road)
  • April 29: Phoenix International Raceway/Phoenix, AZ (oval) – night race
  • May 13: Grand Prix of Indianapolis/Indianapolis, IN (road)
  • May 28: Indianapolis 500/Indianapolis, IN (oval)
  • June 3: Raceway at Belle Isle Park /Detroit, MI (street)
  • June 4: Raceway at Belle Isle Park /Detroit, MI (street) λ June 10: Texas Motor Speedway/Fort Worth, TX (oval) – night race
  • June 25: Road America/Elkhart Lake, WI (road)
  • July 9: Iowa Speedway/Newton, IA (oval)
  • July 16: Streets of Toronto/Toronto, Canada (street)
  • July 30: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course/Lexington, OH (road) – night race
  • Aug. 20: Pocono Raceway/Long Pond, PA (oval)
  • Aug 26: Gateway Motorsports Park/Madison, IL (oval)
  • Sept 3: Watkins Glen International/Watkins Glen, NY (road)
  • Sept. 17: Sonoma Raceway/Sonoma, CA (road course)