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Grand Prix of Baltimore

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Grand Prix of Baltimore
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An IZOD IndyCar Series and an American Le Mans Series held on a street course in Baltimore, Maryland, USA.

DateWinnerWinner's Make
4 September 2011Will PowerDallara-Honda2011 Race Information
2 September 2012Ryan Hunter-ReayDallara-Chevrolet2012 Race Information
1 September 2013Simon PagenaudDallara-Honda2013 Race Information


History

The following section is an excerpt from Wikipedia's Grand Prix of Baltimore page on 10 September 2016, text available via the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

The Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT was an IndyCar Series and American Le Mans Series race held on a street circuit in Baltimore, Maryland. The inaugural race was held September 4, 2011. ESPN said it was the best inaugural street race in North America in the last 30 years. The races are contested on a temporary street circuit around the Inner Harbor area of downtown Baltimore.

Baltimore Racing Development signed a multi-year contract with IndyCar and the City of Baltimore to organize the race, but the city terminated their contract with BRD at the end of 2011 due to unpaid debts. On February 15, 2012 it was announced that the city of Baltimore had entered into a five-year agreement with Downforce Racing to manage the race. However, Downforce failed to fulfill their obligations to the city. On May 10, 2012 it was announced that Race On LLC. and Andretti Sports Marketing, led by racing legend Michael Andretti would take over the organization and promotion of the event. Race On LLC is owned by Gregory O'Neill and J.P. Grant III. On September 13, 2013 it was announced that the race would not be held in 2014 or 2015 due to scheduling conflicts.

Circuit

The circuit is a 2.04-mile (3.28 km) temporary street circuit that is run in a clockwise direction, with the start-finish line located on Pratt Street, passing by various Baltimore landmarks, including the Baltimore Convention Center, the Inner Harbor, and Camden Yards. The cars travel east along Pratt Street to Light Street, where they turn right and travel south along the northbound lanes to the intersection between Light and Lee Streets. This forms the slowest corner on the circuit, a right-hand hairpin turn that leads the cars back north along Light Street's southbound lanes to Conway Street. The cars turn left here and head west along Conway Street to the Camden Station. They then navigate a chicane designed to slow the cars down before the pit entry — the circuit is unusual in that the pits are not located on the main straight — and turn left again. The cars circle around Oriole Park at Camden Yards stadium to Russell Street, where they turn north once more. This short straight feeds into a pair of sweepers, right and then left, that lead to Pratt Street and the 0.5-mile (0.80 km) long main straight. Finally, the cars navigate a temporary chicane placed at the junction between Pratt and Howard Street as they cross train lines.

Following the 2011 race, several drivers offered the opinion that the temporary chicane on the main straight was unnecessary, and it was subsequently removed ahead of the 2012 race so as to increase entry speeds into the first corner. However, during the first practice sessions for the 2012 race, several drivers — including Simon Pagenaud and Oriol Servià — became airborne as they crossed the train tracks. IndyCar officials abandoned the practice session and reinstalled the temporary chicane.

Other changes for the 2012 race included the re-profiling of the chicane before the pit entry. In 2011, the circuit had been narrowed down to a single lane with several tight corners to force the cars to slow down. This was simplified for 2012 and widened, slowing the cars down, but preventing the field from being forced through a bottleneck.

Controversy

Along with the closing of the commercial center of downtown Baltimore for track preparation, trees were removed from city streets, spawning a court case. Also, Baltimore Brew identified $42,400 in campaign contributions over the last 4 years to Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and other political officials from investors and businesses that stood to gain from the race being held.

After its inaugural run, it was reported that the race failed to bring as much economic activity to Baltimore as had been promised and that Baltimore Racing Development has had difficulties paying monies owed to local businesses and the state, the latter resulting in a $567,000 tax lien being filed. With Baltimore Racing Development $3 million in debt, including nearly $1.2 million owed to Baltimore City, the city terminated their contract with BRD at the end of 2011. This meant the race would only take place again if both the city and IndyCar approved a new organizer. IndyCar officials have expressed hope that a new organizer will be found. The city of Baltimore announced on February 10, 2012 that a five-year deal with race organizer Downforce Racing, LLC was being finalized and would be presented to the city Board of Estimates February 22. The new contract includes provisions such as a $3 per ticket surcharge for city services to reduce the risk of unpaid fees to the city.


2011 Race Information

DateArticleAuthor/Source
28 June 2011Temporary Closure of I-395 Just South of Conway Street in the City of Baltimore to Vehicular Traffic To Accommodate the Construction and Operation of the Baltimore Grand Prix
28 June 2011Temporary Closure of I-395 Just South of Conway Street in the City of Baltimore to Vehicular Traffic To Accommodate the Construction and Operation of the Baltimore Grand PrixVictor M. Mendez
22 August 2011Temporary Closure of I-395 Just South of Conway Street in the City of Baltimore to Vehicular Traffic To Accommodate the Construction and Operation of the Baltimore Grand PrixVictor M. Mendez
3 September 2011IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of BaltimoreSebastien Bourdais
3 September 2011IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of BaltimoreRyan Briscoe
Dario Franchitti
Ryan Hunter-Reay
Will Power
Graham Rahal
4 September 2011IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of BaltimoreTony Kanaan
Will Power
Stephanie Rawlings-Blake
Oriol Servia


2012 Race Information

DateArticleAuthor/Source
29 August 2012Baltimore Excitement Hits ECR This Weekend Tom Blattler
29 August 2012Barracuda Racing Pre-Race Notes & Quotes: Grand Prix of BaltimoreMonica Hilton, Bryan Herta Autosport
30 August 20122012 Temporary Closure of I-395 Just South of Conway Street in the City of Baltimore to Vehicular Traffic to Accommodate the Construction and Operation of the Baltimore Grand PrixVictor M. Mendez
31 August 2012Rough Track Surface In Baltimore Not Easy for IndyCars Friday Tom Blattler
1 September 2012Carpenter To Start Season Best 8th in Baltimore Grand Prix Tom Blattler
1 September 2012Disappointing Qualifying for Barracuda Racing in Baltimore Monica Hilton, Bryan Herta Autosport
1 September 2012IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRTSebastien Bourdais
Mike Conway
Scott Dixon
Dario Franchitti
James Hinchcliffe
Will Power
2 September 20121st DNF for Carpenter, ECR/Fuzzy's Vodka Team in 2012 Tom Blattler
2 September 2012Firestone Indy Lights: Grand Prix of BaltimoreEsteban Guerrieri
Tristan Vautier
Gustavo Yacaman
2 September 2012IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRTMichael Andretti
2 September 2012IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRTWill Power
Ryan Hunter-Reay
2 September 2012IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRTRyan Briscoe
Simon Pagenaud
4 September 2012Barracuda Racing’s Top Ten Streak Continues Monica Hilton, Bryan Herta Autosport


2013 Race Information

DateArticleAuthor/Source
22 August 20132013 Temporary Closure of I-395 Just South of Conway Street in the City of Baltimore to Vehicular Traffic To Accommodate the Construction and Operation of the Baltimore Grand PrixVictor M. Mendez
28 August 2013Barracuda Racing Pre-Race Notes & Quotes: Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRTMonica Hilton, Bryan Herta Autosport
28 August 2013Sonoma To Baltimore is a Big Contrast Says Carpenter Tom Blattler
30 August 2013Carpenter Battles Tricky Track, Heat and Humidity at Baltimore Friday Tom Blattler
31 August 2013Barracuda Racing to Start 14th in Grand Prix of Baltimore Monica Hilton, Bryan Herta Autosport
31 August 2013Carpenter Closes Gap on the Leaders in Baltimore Qualifying Saturday Tom Blattler
31 August 2013IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of BaltimoreScott Dixon
Josef Newgarden
Simon Pagenaud
Will Power
Tristan Vautier
Justin Wilson
1 September 2013Carpenter Survives "Baltimore Street Fight" Sunday With 14th Tom Blattler
1 September 2013Day Ends Early for Barracuda Racing in Baltimore Monica Hilton, Bryan Herta Autosport
1 September 2013Firestone Indy Lights: Grand Prix of BaltimoreGabby Chaves
Jack Hawksworth
Sage Karam
1 September 2013IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of BaltimoreSebastien Bourdais
Josef Newgarden
1 September 2013IZOD IndyCar Series: Grand Prix of BaltimoreSimon Pagenaud
26 September 2013Children Learn about Science from Race Cars Deborah Block, VOA News


DateMedia or Collection Name & DetailsFiles
26 September 2013Children Learn about Science from Race Cars
Deborah Block, VOA News

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