IndyCar: Tweaks made ahead of 2017 season
The Verizon IndyCar Series announced a number of changes for the 2017 season that will standardize some of its event schedules and attempt to improve aspects of its open-wheel product.
The first move of note involves setting standard practice times of 45 minutes at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. (local) on the Friday of each road and street course. Other road/street course schedule adjustments were also made, with the Grand Prix of Indianapolis being shortened from three days to two, and the lone double-header on the calendar at Detroit’s Belle Isle will have its qualifying process simplified. Rather than use a knockout-style procedure for the first race and a separate process for the second, individual qualifying sessions for each race will be held. In those sessions, half the field will be given 12 minutes to qualify before the other half qualifies, and the starting order will be set on fastest times.
Short oval qualifying has been moved to race day at Phoenix and Gateway; both races take place on Saturday nights.