SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, Calif. – For the first time in seven years, the thrill, excitement and speed of the IZOD INDYCAR Series will return to Auto Club Speedway – the Speedway where the world speed record for the fastest lap of 241.426 mph was set in 2000 – and still stands today.
“This facility was built to host open-wheel racing and Auto Club Speedway has arguably hosted some of the most exciting races in Indy car history,” said Gillian Zucker, president, Auto Club Speedway. “We look forward to building on the area’s history and tradition of open-wheel racing with new records and new races beginning in 2012.”
“We feel the time is right to bring IndyCar racing back to Auto Club Speedway,” said Randy Bernard, chief executive officer, INDYCAR. “We want to maintain the diverse line-up of ovals on our schedule and the addition of Auto Club Speedway adds a great venue that was built for the high-speed, wheel-to-wheel excitement of IndyCar racing under the lights.”
The stars of the series, which includes Helio Castroneves, Dario Franchitti and this year’s Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon, along with high-profile owners Roger Penske, Chip Ganassi, A.J. Foyt and Bobby Rahal are expected to visit Southern California’s premier motorsports facility in the Fall of 2012 with the intense competition, high-energy show scheduled to be run at night under the lights.
Tickets for the highly anticipated event will go on sale on Sept. 12, 2011. Ticket Pricing are as follows: Reserved Club area $60; Reserved $50; General Admission $30; Kids 12 and under free in General Admission with Lefty’s Kids Club membership and camping packages will be available from $255 to $330.
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Sam Hornish Jr. won the Inaugural IndyCar Series race at Auto Club Speedway in 2002 in an exciting finish that saw him beat Jaques Lazier across the finish line by a mere 0.0281 seconds. The series continued to run at Auto Club Speedway through 2005 and provided race fans with speed and excitement each time it visited the speedway. Some of those highlights include:
- October 28, 2000: During qualifying, Gil de Ferran set the track record for fastest lap at 241.426 mph (388.537 km/h). This was also a world speed record for the fastest lap of a closed course.
- March 24, 2002: Sam Hornish Jr. wins the first IndyCar Series race at Auto Club Speedway by 0.0281 seconds over Jaques Lazier.
- November 3, 2002: Jimmy Vasser won the final 500 mile race in CART/Champ Car (now defunct) history. The race also set the track record (at the time) for average race speed at 197.995 mph (318.642 km/h).
- September 21, 2003: During the IndyCar Series race (Toyota Indy 400), Sam Hornish, Jr. set the track record for fastest average speed during a race at 207.151 mph (333.377 km/h). This is still the current track record.
- September 20, 2003: IndyCar Series qualifying record set – (one lap): Helio Castroneves, 226.757 mph (364.930 km/h).
To purchase tickets to see the IndyCar Series return to Auto Club Speedway, call 800-944-RACE (7223) or visit www.autoclubspeedway.com. Tickets go on sale September 12, 2011.