INDIANAPOLIS (Thursday, October 18, 2012) – Firestone Indy Lights announced today a 12-race schedule for its 2013 season that features a diverse lineup of ovals and road/street circuits designed to prepare drivers for the for the next step of the Mazda Road to Indy ladder – the IZOD IndyCar Series.
Two new venues and the return to the 2.258-mile Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course after a two-year absence highlight the schedule. Additions are the 2.5-mile Pocono Raceway oval and the 1.7-mile, 10-turn temporary street course at Reliant Park in Houston. Nine venues that hosted Firestone Indy Lights races in 2012 return, and all event weekends will be run in conjunction with the IZOD IndyCar Series and complemented by other Mazda Road to Indy series.
“Our goal is to create a schedule that will challenge up-and-coming drivers while preparing them for the diversity of the IZOD IndyCar Series,” said Tony George Jr., Director, Firestone Indy Lights. “For the 2013 season, we are adding an oval, road course and temporary street circuit, which enhance the schedule. To earn the championship and $1 million Mazda Road to Indy scholarship to the IZOD IndyCar Series, a driver must maximize points opportunities in each discipline.
“We also want to showcase the strength of our ladder system, and there is no better way to do that than to run at the tracks where the IZOD IndyCar Series competes.”
The season will open March 23-24 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla., while Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif., again will host the finale Oct. 18-19. The first oval of the season will be the Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 24, two days before the 97th Running of the Indianapolis 500. In total, five ovals appear on the 2013 Firestone Indy Lights schedule.
All Firestone Indy Lights races will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network, with dates and times to be announced later.
2013 Firestone Indy Lights Schedule
|March 23-24||Streets of St. Petersburg||St. Petersburg, Fla.||1.8-mile street course|
|April 6-7||Barber Motorsports Park||Birmingham, Ala.||2.38-mile road course|
|April 20-21||Streets of Long Beach||Long Beach, Calif.||1.968-mile street course|
|May 24||Indianapolis Motor Speedway||Indianapolis||2.5-mile oval|
|June 14-15||The Milwaukee Mile||West Allis, Wis.||1-mile oval|
|June 22-23||Iowa Speedway||Newton, Iowa||.875-mile oval|
|July 6-7||Pocono International Raceway||Long Pond, Pa.||2.5-mile oval|
|July 12-13||Streets of Toronto||Toronto||1.75-mile street course|
|Aug. 3-4||Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course||Lexington, Ohio||2.258-mile road course|
|Aug. 31-Sept. 1||Streets of Baltimore||Baltimore||2.04-mile street course|
|Oct. 5-6||Reliant Park||Houston||1.7-mile street course|
|Oct. 18-19||Auto Club Speedway||Fontana, Calif.||2-mile oval|
Schedule subject to change