Kansas Speedway is conveniently located just 15 miles from downtown of Kansas City in the USA. With a history extending back to 1996, Kansas Speedway is a relatively young NASCAR track. Providing great NASCAR racing and top facilities, a day spent at Kansas Speedway is well worth it. NASCAR track Kansas Speedway is host to numerous events including NASCAR, IRL and ARCA races as well as community programs and driving schools. This great racing track is always filled with fun and good times, so why not check it out.
In October of 1996 the International Speedway Corporation came up with the idea to construct a race track in the Midwest of the USA. They selected Kansas City in 1997 as the site of a new speedway. 1998 saw the approval of financing for the project and construction began. In July 1999 the Kansas Speedway launched ticket sales with a great initiative, the Found Fan PASS which would allow ticket holders access to the best seats and other benefits. The NASCAR and the IRL made an announcement in May 2000 that they will be including events at Kansas Speedway on their calendar in 2001. On 21 August 2000 tickets for Kansas city Speedway went on sale internationally, and within 5 days almost 80% of all the tickets for the inaugural season were sold.
Visitors were allowed into Kansas Speedway for the first time on 2 June 2001 to watch the NASCAR Winston West Series and ARCA RE/MAX Series. In May 2001 the Kansas Speedway was named a tourism leader by the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and awarded accordingly. The first NASCAR Winston Cup Series to be held at Kansas Speedway took place on 29 September 2001 with Jeff Gordon gaining the victory. Since then the Kansas Speedway continues to attract massive crowds of eager racing fans to watch a number of thrilling events.
Kansas Speedway is a tri-oval track measuring 1.5 miles. The banking is 15 degrees in the turns and the track pavement width is at 55 feet. This fine speedway makes use of the SAFER Barrier (Steel and Foam Energy Reduction System). The grandstands are able to seat some 82 000 spectators and are set to be increased to a 150 000 capacity. Free parking is available for over 65 000 vehicles and visitors are certain to be able to make use of public transportation on race days. So, if NASCAR racing is your passion, head off to Kansas Speedway.
The Indy Racing League, or IRL, is a sanctioning body for open-wheel auto racing in America. Best known for the popular Indianapolis 500, the IRL endorses the IZOD IndyCar Series, Firestone Indy Lights and, as of 2010, the U.S. F2000 National Championship.
Tony George was responsible for the establishment of the IRL back in 1994, with racing beginning in 1996. George’s goal was to found a lower-cost alternative to CART, which was only accessible to wealthy teams who could afford the expensive technology. As of 2008 Champ Car racing (previously CART) was merged into the IRL.
IndyCar vehicles look similar to open-wheeled formula racing cars, featuring wings and large airboxes. The cars have strict specifications, with all cars using the same parts. Every three years, the chassis and engine manufacturers are reviewed. Originally built just for oval racing, the new generation of IndyCar machines are made to deal with road racing too.
The Indianapolis 500-Mile Race, or Indy 500, takes place each Memorial Day weekend at America’s Indianapolis Motor Speedway. One of the oldest motorsport races, the Indy 500 draws large crowds each year. It is an event avid racing fans would not want to miss. Winners of the Indianapolis 500 have included Dario Franchitti, Emerson Fittipaldi, Rick Mears, Helio Castroneves, Dan Wheldon, Juan Pablo Montoya, Sam Hornish, Jr. Scott Dixon, and others.
The NASCAR element of the Chip Ganassi Racing team merged with Dale Earnhardt Inc to form Earnhardt Ganassi Racing.
Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates is an organization that supports several racing teams involved in NASCAR and IRL races. The association is co-owned by Chip Ganassi and Felix Sabates – both of whom are businessmen. Chip was a successful driver in his younger years and he made the decision to create a one-car IndyCar team in 1990. As a team owner Ganassi enjoyed immense success. In his first four years his team took five championship titles and 46 wins – the start to a long and successful period of racing. He made the decision to partner with Felix Sabates in 2000.
Sebates was never really a racer and he instead made his way into the world of stock car racing as an owner in 1987. This was easy since Sabates was a self-made millionaire from Cuba. He called his original team SABCO Racing and it was this team that Ganassi decided to purchase 80% of as he made his way into the ownership side of NASCAR racing. The Chip Ganassi Racing team is based in Concord, North Carolina. The teams currently race in the IndyCar Series and Rolex Sports Car Series. Dodge has been the car of choice since Ganassi took over the running of the operation – a collaboration which has definitely been advantageous.
Just before the NASCAR team merged with Dale Earnhardt Inc. in November 2008, five drivers worked for the team. David Stemme started racing at the age of 15 and he has raced in the Busch Series and the NEXTEL Cup. Reed Sorenson started racing at the age of six and he went on to become a rookie phenomenon. He too was driving in the Busch Series and the NEXTEL Cup. Born in New Zealand, Scott Dixon was the team’s IndyCar driver. He impressed right from the start – winning his IndyCar debut and going on perform well in successive races. Dan Wheldon hails from England and is also an IndyCar driver. He has enjoyed an immensely successful career both in the states and abroad and is likely to continue to impress both his employers and fans. Scott Pruett is usually the man of choice for the Rolex Series. He has competed in a number of different forms of motorsports and proven to be successful at each one. All five drivers of Chip Ganassi Racing will likely continue to prove their worth in years to come.
When the Champ Car World Series merged with IndyCar earlier this year, the 2008 race schedule was thrown into confusion. A large number of races were cancelled in the struggle to fit so many events into an already cramped schedule and a lot of fans saw red. But it would seem that the dents are slowly being beaten out the schedule and things are getting back on track. The IRL recently confirmed that the IndyCar open-wheel auto racing series would be a feature at Edmonton on July 26. The track has received the race under a new three-year deal and officials are already saying Toronto is next on the list to receive a race.
Terry Angstadt, the head of the IRL’s commercial division, said that things were still in their early stages but that the IRL wanted to bring at least two events to Canada and that they were working hard to that effect. He also said that the IRL had a very good relationship with Andretti Green Promotions and they expected to sign a deal with this company soon. It hasn’t even been a month since former race driver Michael Andretti announced his decision to form a wholly-owned Canadian company under Andretti Green Promotions. Even as he took ownership of the assets belonging to the Grand Prix Association of Toronto, he commented that he hoped to start hosting an IndyCar series event at the track again soon. While it seems that this may be a reality from as early as next year, Edmonton will be the only track hosting an IRL event in Canada in 2008.
While moving an IRL event to Edmonton has been on the cards for a while, there has been quite a bit of red tape to get out of the way before it could become a reality. A number of legal problems arose from the fact Champ Car filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and this meant that the IndyCar open-wheel auto racing series could not be a confirmed feature of the 2008 season at Edmonton until these problems were sorted out. Fortunately things have finally been taken care of and drivers are already looking forward to the race. Veterans of the track may think they have an advantage over the others, but in truth it doesn’t take long for a good driver to learn the track and start making their way to the front of the pack. Up to 30 drivers are expected to compete in the race on the 14-turn, 1.97 mile circuit later this year. In previous years the race has seen as many as 167 000 fans making their way to the track to watch the race over a period of three days. No doubt the 2008 Edmonton season will be every bit as great as it has been in previous years, so make sure you get in on the action and book your ticket now!
Not only has driver Michael Andretti won the Toronto Grand Prix seven times, he now owns the Grand Prix Association of Toronto too. Andretti became the new corporate face of the race on Thursday, 15 May 2008. As spokesman for Andretti Green Racing, Andretti announced that the business fully intended to bring the popular race back to Toronto in the near future. However, despite being optimistic about the likelihood of such an event taking place in the future, the Indy Racing League has not confirmed anything yet.
John Griffin, acting in his capacity as vice-president of public relations for the renowned Indy Racing League, noted that Andretti had a good understanding of the League’s expectations. He further went on to suggest that the go-ahead would be issued within the next 45 days if certain details, such as an event date and the race route, could be worked out and confirmed within that time frame. In the past it was the Exhibition Grounds situated along Lake Shore Boulevard that played host to the race. Whether or not the Toronto Grand Prix stays here or moves to a new route, remains to be seen. However, all involved seem to indicate a positive outlook on the future of the race, and cars should be seen tearing around the streets of Toronto as part of the IndyCar schedule in the 2009 season if everything goes according to plan.
During the course of the press release, Andretti noted that he had always had a soft spot for the race. When racing, it was one of his favorite races of the season, and he will likely carry this enthusiasm over into his promotion of the auto racing event. This year will be the first time in 22 years that a race has not been held in Toronto. The race usually generates about $50 million for the local economy each year, so many consider it vital to see that the race is returned to the schedule. The Toronto Grand Prix was dropped earlier this year when the Indy Racing League merged with the Champ Car World Series. However, getting the legendary race back on the IRL schedule is important to the league and it shouldn’t be long before this happens.