By Amy Konrath
Today’s IZOD IndyCar Series, Firestone Indy Lights and Mazda Road to Indy headlines:
1. Boost levels to remain at 130 Kpa for Indianapolis 500
2. KV Racing Technology penalized for post-qualifying infraction
3. Newgarden honored as fastest rookie
4. Krohn joins Bryan Herta Autosport for Firestone Freedom 100
5. K12 to sponsor Veach beginning at Indianapolis
1. Boost levels to remain at 130 kPa for Indianapolis 500: INDYCAR, the sanctioning body for the IZOD IndyCar Series, announced today that all engines will maintain a boost level 130 kPa for Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.
“After evaluating a variety of options and speaking with all engine manufacturers, we feel it is best from a both a competition and safety standpoint to maintain the current superspeedway boost level for our Lotus-powered entrants,” said Will Phillips, vice-president of technology, INDYCAR.
“At this point, there are too many unknown variables in allowing an engine to run a full-race distance at the increased boost level, so it’s something we are going to need to explore further. At the beginning of the season we mandated there would be no changes to performance regulations prior to June 18, and we plan to maintain that time frame.”
Beaux Barfield, president of competition for INDYCAR, added: “From a safety standpoint, we will be keeping a close eye on speeds as the race progresses to ensure that all cars are within 105 percent of the race leader’s pace. We want to make sure that we are managing the speeds and car placement as the drivers navigate through traffic.”
2. KV Racing Technology penalized for post-qualifying infraction: INDYCAR announced today that it has fined the No. 5 car of KV Racing Technology $25,000 for not complying with Rule 14.12.3. during post-qualifying technical inspection.
14.12.3. Any devices designed to push or pull back caliper pistons or pads is not permitted (Pull back brakes in any form are not permitted).
3. Newgarden honored as fastest rookie: Hearing the story of his father asking for a cold glass of buttermilk following his Indianapolis 500 victory in 1933 never gets old for Louis Meyer Jr. With the simple request, the first three-time winner of the 500 Mile Race established a tradition that will be played out again May 27 in Victory Circle.
Maybe it will be Josef Newgarden or one of the seven other rookies in the 33-driver field. Meyer, who attended the 38th Fastest Rookie of the Year luncheon May 22 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, wouldn’t be surprised given their accomplishments throughout the month.
Newgarden, of Hendersonville, Tenn., was recognized for his speed on the 2.5-mile oval at the luncheon sponsored by the American Dairy Association of Indiana.
Newgarden, who recorded a four-lap average of 224.677 mph in the first segment of qualifying May 19, will start seventh in the No. 67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing/Dollar General car. He’s the highest-starting rookie since Danica Patrick was fourth in 2005.
“It all comes down to the team, Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing,” Newgarden said. “I think they did they did a great job of giving (fellow rookie) Bryan (Clauson) and me comfortable, quick and reliable race cars, and without that it’s difficult to be quick around this place. We’ve had a strong car all month. Now we just have to finish it off in the race.”
Other rookies in the field include Jean Alesi, Rubens Barrichello, Clauson, Wade Cunningham, James Jakes, Katherine Legge and Simon Pagenaud.
4. Krohn joins Bryan Herta Autosport for Firestone Freedom 100: When Firestone Indy Lights cars take to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for practice and qualifying on May 24, a familiar face will be back in the lineup.
Bryan Herta Autosport announced May 22 that Mazda Road to Indy standout Anders Krohn will pilot the No. 28 entry for the prestigious race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Nicknamed “The Viking,” the 24-year-old driver from Stavanger, Norway who currently resides in St. Petersburg, Fla., began racing at the age of three.
Krohn climbed the karting ladder in Europe, culminating with a win in the North-European Karting Championship. He then made the step into European Formula Ford in 2007, finishing second in the championship. He’s been racing in the U.S. since 2008, earning the championship and being named Rookie of the Year in the F2000 Series. Krohn competed in the Star Mazda Series for two years before stepping into a Firestone Indy Lights car in 2011.
At the Freedom 100, Krohn aims to create awareness for the I-Tec and Yellow Jacket ‘Wanna Frac More?’ campaign, which showcases their supreme technology in Hydraulic Fracturing. In addition, Premiere Glass & Mirror will make their racing sponsorship debut on BHA’s No. 28 car.
“Racing for Bryan Herta Autosport means that I’m stepping into one of the most highly regarded teams out there,” Krohn said. “The fact that I get to make my first appearance for them at Indianapolis Motor Speedway simply adds to the excitement. I’ve been pushing hard to race at the Brickyard again, and couldn’t be happier about making my Firestone Indy Lights return with BHA.
“I’m also excited about having I-Tec and Yellow Jacket partner up with us for this event and I want to put on a good show for them, as well as my partners OMP Racing and Bell Helmets. All in all I’m pumped to be back and have full confidence that together with BHA, we will be a force to be reckoned with come race day.”
5. K12 to sponsor Veach beginning at Indianapolis: K12, the nation’s largest provider of proprietary curriculum and online education programs for students in kindergarten through high school, announced it will serve as the primary sponsor of Andretti Autosport Star Mazda Championship driver Zach Veach, beginning with his race at Lucas Oil Raceway at Indianapolis and continuing through the balance of the 2012 season.
“K12 is honored to partner with such a positive and accomplished young man,” said Ron Packard, CEO and Founder of K12 Inc. “Zach is the perfect example of how individualized learning can make life easier for a student who is working towards a dream yet still wants to receive a full-time education.”
K12 has delivered over 4.5 million online courses from its extensive portfolio over the past decade, including courses developed for credit recovery, core courses, world languages, and AP and high school electives. Curriculum solutions provided by K12 are used in over 2000 school districts and through full-time online public schools like the one Zach attends. The flexibility and quality of these programs, where students access lessons, classrooms and teacher support via the Internet, appeals to a wide variety of students including advanced learners and those who are honing unique talents. For Veach, online learning keeps him on pace to pursue his career as a semi-pro racing driver.
Veach, a 17-year-old from Stockdale, Ohio, is currently enrolled in The Ohio Virtual Academy, an online public school that pairs state-certified teachers with the curriculum provided by K12 to individualize education.
“I definitely wouldn’t be where I am today pursuing a career in racing without the K12 curriculum to help me,” said Veach. “The opportunity K12 provides kids like me is unparalleled. I have the chance to still pursue my dream and still get my full education at the same time. For K12 to step-up and be part of my dream even further by helping to support my racing career is really an honor.”
Racing since age 12, Veach joined INYDCAR’s “Mazda Road to Indy” developmental ladder program in 2010. After a tailored 2010 season, he returned to the series in 2011 by using two race wins and three pole positions to capture the Cooper Tires USF2000 Winterfest championship before the regular season, where he finished fourth in driver points with one win, five podiums and three pole positions.
Heading into the 2012 season, Veach used four race wins and four pole positions to capture the Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear Winter Series championship, his second straight career winter series championship, before opening the 2012 Star Mazda Championship season.
And though Veach takes his racing career quite seriously, his passion for winning in no way precludes his commitment to his studies. As a high school Junior, Veach keeps in touch with his teachers via email, attends classes through Elluminate, an online collaboration platform, and can be found at his many races, appearances and media commitments utilizing downtime to complete his homework to stay on track in the “classroom”.
The next IZOD IndyCar Series race is the Indianapolis 500 Mile on May 27 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be televised by ABC at 11a.m. (ET) and broadcast by the IMS Radio Network on SiriusXM (XM 94 and Sirius 212). The next Firestone Indy Lights race is the Firestone Freedom 100 on May 25 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be televised live by NBC Sports Network at Noon (ET) and broadcast by the IMS Radio Network.