Saturday, July 26 - 5 p.m. (EDT) = Edmonton City Centre Airport
Distance 95 laps / 186.2 miles
TV ESPN (Live)Radio IMS Radio Network / XM Satellite Radio (Live)
Edmonton City Centre Airport - 14-turn, 1.96-mile street circuit
Transition drivers look for advantage at Edmonton
The Rexall Edmonton Indy will be the first race where drivers who transitioned from Champ Car have experience at a circuit that returning IndyCar Series drivers do not. Eight drivers entered in the Rexall Edmonton Indy have competed at the circuit in the past three years, recording 10 top-five finishes in 18 starts. Will Power won the pole at Edmonton last year, and Justin Wilson was the race winner in 2006. How much of an advantage will drivers returning to Edmonton hold?
Tracy set for return
Paul Tracy, who earned 31 victories in Champ Car, returns to the driver’s seat with Vision Racing for the Rexall Edmonton Indy. In three starts at Edmonton, he recorded a third and two fifths. How will the native Canadian fare in his first IndyCar Series race of the season?
Five races remain in championship battle
Three drivers remain with 100 points of the lead for the 2008 IndyCar Series championship with only five race remaining. Scott Dixon is the leader followed by Helio Castroneves (-58), Tony Kanaan (-90) and Dan Wheldon (-91). How will these championship contenders fare at Edmonton?
Edmonton wraps up grueling six-race stretch
The Rexall Edmonton Indy wraps up a stretch of races on six consecutive races, including a 30-hour drive from the previous race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The stretch has included three races on ovals and three races on road/street courses. How are the drivers and teams surviving?
Added drama in qualifying
Single-car qualifying has been eliminated on road and street courses in 2008. Drivers are now randomly assigned to two groups that each receive 20 minutes of qualifying time. The top six from each group advance to a second session, and then the fastest six from that session advance to the Firestone Fast Six to determine the PEAK Motor Oil Pole Award winner. How will the drivers fight their way to the top in each group to earn a starting position at the front?
This is the first IndyCar Series event at Edmonton although eight drivers entered combined to make 18 Champ Car starts at the circuit in the last three years. Mario Dominguez, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Bruno Junqueira, Will Power, Graham Rahal, Oriol Servia, Paul Tracy and Justin Wilson each made at least one start at Edmonton.
Team Penske drivers have won the last two pole positions on road/street courses. Ryan Briscoe won the pole at Watkins Glen, and Helio Castroneves won the pole at Mid-Ohio.
Mid-Ohio was the first race this season where none of the four Andretti Green Racing cars finished in the top five.
Andretti Green Racing driver Tony Kanaan won the pole at this season’s only other street race (St. Petersburg in April).
· Helio Castroneves and Scott Dixon are the only drivers to finish in the top five in nine of the 11 races this season.
· Helio Castroneves is the only driver running at the finish of every race in 2008.
· Seven drivers have won races in 2008. The IndyCar Series record is nine drivers in 1996/97, 2002, 2003 and 2005.
Milestones & Records:
Helio Castroneves will attempt to make his 110th career IndyCar Series start. It would also be his 108th consecutive start. Helio Castroneves can establish an IndyCar Series record for most consecutive seasons with at least one win should he win the Rexall Edmonton Indy. Castroneves is tied with Scott Sharp with victories in seven consecutive seasons. Helio Castroneves extended his IndyCar Series record for consecutive seasons with a pole to seven when he won the PEAK Motor Oil Pole Award at Nashville. His pole at Mid-Ohio was the 25th of his career. Tony Kanaan finished fourth at Nashville, giving him the 63rd top-five finish of his career, an IndyCar Series record. Scott Dixon needs to lead 32 laps to become the fifth driver to lead 2,000 laps in his career. The others to lead at least 2,000 laps are Sam Hornish Jr. (3,428), Helio Castroneves (2,833), Dan Wheldon (2,735) and Tony Kanaan (2,478). Scott Dixon has led 686 laps this season. The record for most laps led in a season is 889 by Tony Kanaan in 2004. Helio Castroneves has led laps in 66 IndyCar Series races, second only to Sam Hornish Jr., who led laps in 67 races. Vitor Meira has gone 88 starts without a victory in the IndyCar Series, the longest drought of any IndyCar Series driver.
Schedule (local time):
1:15-2:45 p.m. – IndyCar Series practice
4:45-5:45 p.m. – IndyCar Series practice
10:30-11:30 a.m. – IndyCar Series practice (two groups)
3:15-4:45 p.m. – PEAK Motor Oil Pole Award Qualifying presented by Canadian Tire
9:55-10:25 a.m. – IndyCar Series warm-up
2 p.m. – Rexall Edmonton Indy pre-race
3 p.m. – Rexall Edmonton Indy (95 laps/186.2 miles)