Road To Indy – 2011 Schedules for The Road to Indy

The 2011 schedules are set for all three steps in the Road To Indy program and there are some significant changes from the 2010 schedule. First, lets look at just what the schedules are.

US F2000 National Championship

Date Venue
Mar 17 Sebring Race #1
Mar 18 Sebring Race #2
Mar 26 St. Pete Race #1
Mar 27 St. Pete Race #2
May 28 O’Reilly Raceway Park
Jun 18 The Milwaukee Mile
Aug 5 Mid-Ohio Race #1
Aug 6 Mid-Ohio Race #2
Aug 19 Road America Race #1
Aug 20 Road America Race #2
Sep 4 Baltimore Race #1
Sep 4 Baltimore Race #2

Star Mazda Championship

Date Venue
Mar 27 St. Petersburg
Apr ?? TBD
May 28 O’Reilly Raceway Park
Jun 18 The Milwaukee Mile
Jun 25 Iowa Speedway
Jul 23 Mosport
Aug 6 Trois-Rivieres Race #1
Aug 7 Trois-Rivieres Race #2
Aug 28 Infineon Raceway
Sep 4 Baltimore
Sep 17 Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca

Firestone Indy Lights

Date Venue
Mar 27 Streets of St. Petersburg
Apr 10 Barber Motorsports Park
Apr 17 Streets of Long Beach
May 27 Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Jun 19 The Milwaukee Mile
Jun 24 Iowa Speedway
Jul 10 Streets of Toronto
Aug 7 Circuit Trois-Rivières
Aug 14 New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Sep 4 Streets of Baltimore
Oct 2 Kentucky Speedway
Oct 16 TBA (Las Vegas Motor Speedway?)

There are a few things of note here. First of all, the Star Mazda Championship will not be making an appearance at Sebring, Road America, or Road Atlanta this year. The loss of the race during the 12 Hours of Sebring event and the race during the Petit LeMans weekend at Road Atlanta are very unfortunate. Those two events were the largest events on the Star Mazda calendar and represented the best venues for a sponsor’s ROI. Lots of eyeballs and lots of opportunity to do business. However, these next couple of years are likely to be more in the way of transition seasons as officials work to align the three rungs of the Road to Indy ladder. These schedules take a large step toward that alignment with all three series appearing at St. Petersburg, The Milwaukee Mile, and Baltimore.

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A new feature has also been added to the 2011 schedule. The Firestone Indy Lights series will be the headliner event at Circuit Trois-Rivières with the Star Mazda Championship as the supporting series. While its very exciting for the Firestone Indy Lights series to be the primary attraction at such a historic track as Trois-Rivières, it does mean that they will not be at Mid-Ohio and that the USF2000 National Championship will not be able to join them either. Its a good start, though, and hopefully we will see more events such as this in the future. I will say that Saturday night at the Iowa Speedway this past year when the USF2000 and Star Mazda drivers opened for the Firestone Indy Lights feature was an extremely successful event, and the turn out demonstrated that there are a large number of fans interested in seeing more from these young drivers aspiring to one day drive in the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race.

Another positive move represented in all three schedules is the increase in oval events. The USF2000 National Championship will return to the O’Reilly Raceway Park and will race at The Milwaukee Mile. The Star Mazda Championship will compete at both of those ovals as well as the Iowa Speedway. The Firestone Indy Lights series is split exactly in half with six ovals and six road or street courses. The Firestone Indy Lights series will again be the feature event on Carburetion Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as well as competing at Milwaukee, Iowa, New Hampshire, Kentucky, and the season finally which will most likely be at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

Although this isn’t the ideal schedule, it is a good one and one that takes a positive step forward in making the Road to Indy a clearer and more straightforward path.

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