2012 IndyCar calendar announced

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    Keith Collantine

    IndyCar have confirmed their calendar for next year.

    Among the changes are the well-publicised axeing of the Las Vegas race. Kentucky and Motegi have also gone. So have Milwaukee and New Hampshire which I think is a real shame – I’ve always enjoyed IndyCar racing on one-mile ovals

    I’m dubious about the new street track in China, not least because it’s over 6km long which seems excessive.

    Fontana (Auto Club Speedway) and Detroit both return which are good to see.

    Texas will go back to being a 228-lap race instead of the separate 114-lap races we had this year with its dreadful grid lottery.

    With seven street tracks and four road courses (including Edmonton) that leaves just four ovals on the 15-race schedule.

    March 25: Streets of St. Petersburg (1.8-mile street course)
    April 1: Barber Motorsports Park (2.3-mile road course)
    April 15: Streets of Long Beach (1.968-mile street course)
    April 29: Streets of Sao Paulo (2.536-mile street course)
    May 27: Indianapolis Motor Speedway (2.5-mile oval)
    June 3: Raceway at Belle Isle Park (2.1-mile street course)
    June 9: Texas Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval)
    June 23: Iowa Speedway (.875-mile oval)
    July 8: Streets of Toronto (1.755-mile street course)
    July 22: Edmonton City Centre Airport (1.973-mile airport course)
    Aug. 5: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (2.258-mile road course)
    Aug. 19: Streets of Qingdao, China (3.87-mile street course)
    Aug. 26: Infineon Raceway (2.303-mile road course)
    Sept. 2: Streets of Baltimore (2-mile street course)
    Sept. 15: Auto Club Speedway (2-mile oval)

    AMG Fan

    I seem to remember Detroit producing very messy CART and IndyCar races, should be a laugh though. The addition of Fontana is odd, as IndyCar seemed to move away from 2 mile ovals which are not quite as banked as 1.5 ovals. The thought of Fontana bores me a little; the NASCAR races have been very vanilla over the years. Also, I cannot see how a lap won’t be anything other than totally wide open with the radius of the turns.

    I agree with Keith about 1 mile ovals, they produce the best IndyCar oval races imo. On flat 1 mile tracks, the drivers have to blend off the throttle and beat each other into corners, not just drive in whichever groove they feel like to overtake. Milwaukee was just brilliant, along with Richmond, Phoenix and Loudon.

    I’m most interested in IndyCar stating that two additional rounds could be a possibility; I wonder what they may be? Really hope those possible rounds are not more road courses; short, flat ovals please!


    Detroit was very tight and twisty, but I have a fondness for the course. It might be because I got to go to the CART race in ’99 and it was a great experience. But still, I consider it one of the more classic tracks and it’s good to see it back!


    @keithcollantine but I thought we were fans of tracks of all different shapes and sizes? Surely a 6km track would be a good thing (providing the layout they produce is decent).

    Keith Collantine

    @ajokay In F1 I’d certainly like to see more variety. But here my concerns are more practical: street circuits are more difficult to organise races at then purpose-built venues and the longer they are the harder they are to run.

    Also spectators at street circuits can generally see much less of the track because of all the buildings. Therefore a short lap is preferable so they can see more of the action.

    But I must admit I’m down on the whole idea of IndyCar racing in China. Nothing against the Chinese, I’m just concerned it won’t work out. After all, several series have tried and failed to hold races in China. I hope whoever is footing the bill is paying them a lot of money… and well in advance.

    Keith Collantine

    According to this article they need to get the calendar up to 16 races to fulfil sponsor obligations:

    Extra races under consideration include yet another street race, this time in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

    There’s also a chance they could return to Milwaukee on June 17th, which I really hope happens.


    I would much prefer Milwaukee – one more oval on the calendar. Apparently it’s 50/50 if it’s coming back:

    The scheduling is a bit of a worry though.


    Do you think IndyCar will ever race on a ‘roval’ circuit? For whatever reason the series seems to have an aversion to visiting what I would consider the classic or famous road circuits like Laguna Seca, Sebring or Watkins Glen, would populating the calendar with a couple or rival circuits help the situation any? The oval circuits tend to be close to major populations, allowing easy access and views of the entire circuit from the stands, but also add some variety instead of adding even more street circuits. Of course they could use the oval, but it seems that with recent events, and with this year’s calendar featuring only 4 of them, it’s something they’re looking at moving away from.


    Rovals? Possible though I don’t think so. Most of the major Rovals in the United States are part of Major NASCAR tracks who I feel are beginning to see Indycar as a threat. Same reason why Indycar won’t go back to Watkins Glen anytime soon. ISC who are under the control of the same people who run NASCAR don’t want Indycar there as it may take viewers away from NASCAR whose viewership has been falling. Laguna Seca I don’t see happening because there are already two races in California which means a third could make all three unprofitable if they start fighting for attendees. I don’t see a reason why Sebring couldn’t be an option though I can’t imagine Indycar hasn’t already considered it.


    @ajokay I wish they came to tracks like Laguna Seca or Sebring, and I’m surprised they aren’t going to Watkins Glen this year cause they used to go. But living in Florida, I can tell you that Sebring is NOT suitable for any major open-wheel racing series ( @Joey-Poey don’t tell me you disagree with that because if you’ve ever seen turn 17…..) The facilities are not up to standard, and there aren’t really any grandstands, everything is General Admission. Not to mention the track surface, which is awful, and turn 17 in an indy car would be hell. Laguna Seca probably won’t come back cause of Rodriguez’s crash, and probably cause they don’t want to pay. I’m not sure what happened to Watkins Glen since that place loves all kinds of racing, but I’m guessing money is the issue.

    It makes me sad to watch races in St. Pete and Infineon knowing that those other classic tracks can’t get a race for some reason. The calendar is filled with boring tracks, and the lack of Ovals I’m almost sure signifies the death of Indycar. Its sad, but true.


    Wow, I forgot about the plans for a Fort Lauderdale race. As much as I hate most of the new street circuits Indycar has created, this would be the closest race to me since Homestead left the calendar. I just hope they focus on the racing, not just the visual aspect of the track.

    I think the most cost effective option would be to do it at the Ft Lauderdale Intl. Airport. It’s not a major airport (major like MIA), and the design has a perfect spot for a pit lane already. Not to mention placing grandstands at an airport is easier than on a street circuit, and I think that even though logistically speaking it is harder to do, its less expensive to shut down half and airport than it is to shut down a quarter of a city. That being said, its still very difficult to do, but it would be easier to make the airport usable as a track than the city.

    Here is my idea for the Airport track:


    By 17 I’m assuming you mean Sunset? And yes, dear lord, as fun as that track is to race in the Dallara on iRacing, it’d be a death trap in real life. Turn 1 would also be pretty dangerous as it’s terribly fast with little run off at the end of the corner (along with it’s own share of bumps).

    I don’t think they’re afraid of Laguna due to Rodriguez because his death was in ’99 and they raced there until ’04. I suspect it’s a money issue more likely. If they can just get the series back on their feet financially, I absolutely see them returning, because it was definitely one of the most popular circuits on the calendar.

    Unfortunately, for the rovals idea, most of those are very tight and twisty, which does not lend itself well to competitive racing in Indy Cars. I know I was reading recently and there were some changes done a few years ago to Daytona’s infield to perhaps make it possible to race them there, but I can’t see that happening soon. If it does, though, I am TERRIBLY intrigued to see how it plays out.


    Looks like Milwaukee and a street race in Fort Lauterdale will be added to the schedule.

    Keith Collantine

    Regarding Milwaukee, this looks promising:!/RBINDYCAR/statuses/157806424938905602


    I’ve never followed IndyCar before but I will be doing so this year. Seems a good time, given the new car design and all.

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