Friday, June 12, 2015

Friday at @hondaindy Toronto 2015

The gates to Fan Friday opened at 8 am and the rain followed soon after. Today's weather could be touch and go but the rest of the weekend is supposed to be nice (at least for Saturday), otherwise the IndyCar race goes rain or shine. Besides today's crap weather, Fan Friday is a nice way to take in the excitement of top tier racing right on your doorstep. You can sit in the grandstands (first come, first served on Fan Friday), watch the drivers head to the pits from the IndyCar Paddock and enjoy the food truck offerings and check out the rest of the festival events and vendors - for only a small donation to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. IndyCars exit the narrow pit lane adjacent to the new hotel under construction in Exhibition Place in the photo at top.
Practices are lined up for today, the first being the Canadian Touring Car Series and ending later today with the GT3 cars. The first round cars are in the pits waiting for the rain to break.
The entire Mazda Road to Indy Series will be participating to Motorfest over the weekend: USF2000 (above), Pro Mazda and Indy Lights. This progression, sanctioned by IndyCar, allows drivers to rise from the USF2000 to Pro Mazda to Indy Lights, finally, if the gods align and sponsorship dollars are available, drivers can make it to the Verizon IndyCar Series and the Indianapolis 500. Josef Newgarden, Helio Castroneves, Scott Dixon and James Hinchcliffe are some of the graduates of the Road to Indy.
Marco Andretti #27
Josef Newgarden #67

Rain moved away and the first practice got underway shortly after 9:00am. Juan Pablo Montoya, Simon Pagenaud and Josef Newgarden posted the fastest times in the first IndyCar practice of the day. Their second practice of the day is scheduled for 2:45 to 3:30pm. Late additions to the IndyCar driver roster include Tristan Vautier #19 and Rodolfo Gonzalez #18.
Firestone Racing Fast Fact: with over 1,330 Firestone tires brought to Toronto for the race, the foot wide tires would stand nearly as tall as the CN Tower if you could stack them that high.
The official Drivers Party is tonight at Muzik, here in Exhibition Place and the first race will be Saturday with the GT3 series (11:40am start).
Drivers love their scooters. Simon Pagenaud #22 and Sebastien Bourdais #11

See more of Fan Friday after the jump.

Helio Castroneves #3
The SST Stadium Super Trucks. Their first race starts Saturday at 4:00pm
Canadian Touring Cars (CTCC) take the track early in the morning
Some spare nose cones - for just in case
Drivers meet with the crew at their space age stations. Luca Filippi #20 in the Fuzzy's pit, above. Pit assignments have Team Penske in the first 3 positions (#1, #22 and #3) and interestingly, the assignments do not include the number thirteen. Pit Stalls are 36 feet long. To make up the 23 pit spots to match the 23 cars in Toronto's race, two cars share the number 12. Schmidt Peterson Motorsports #7 is in pit 12 and AJ Foyt Enterprises#14 car is in pit 12A. Many of the drivers are superstitious!

Will Power #1 passes by the Start/Finish Grandstand in front of the Direct Energy Centre

Will Power #1 in the pits
Takuma Sato #14 and Conor Daly #5 head out onto the track

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