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DATE News (chronologically)
12/10/11
irl
2012 IndyCar schedule  UPDATE #20 Here is what we think the final 2012 IndyCar schedule will look like.  We believe the series will return to Texas Motor Speedway and Randy Bernard will do the impossible and make the Las Vegas street race a reality for the grand finale.

Bruton Smith, who owns the Las Vegas oval venue in addition to the Texas Motor Speedway, Kentucky Speedway and Infineon Raceway Sears Point on which the Indy cars raced in 2011, told the Associated Press he wanted the series to honor a three-year agreement, but that his company, SMI would agree to a buyout for the 2012 and review the final season's date at a later time.

At this time there is no sanction agreement in place at Texas Motor Speedway, frustrating track president Eddie Gossage, who was a member of the iCONIC committee that settled on Dallara as the chassis maker of choice for the 2012 season and beyond.

Smith said Gossage was frustrated by the lack of action on his date--especially this late in the year.

  1. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street course
  2. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
  3. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
  4. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
  5. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
  6. June 3 - Detroit, MI – street course
  7. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Saturday night doubleheader)
  8. June 24 - Newton, IA - oval track (Saturday night race)
  9. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
  10. July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
  11. August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
  12. August 19 - Qingdao, China street course
  13. Aug. 26 - Sonoma, Calif. road course
  14. September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course
  15. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track
  16. October 13-14 - Las Vegas, NV - street course
12/04/11 The official 2012 IndyCar wall calendar we received yesterday only shows the following races for 2012.  Hmm.....either a major printing snafu or things are worse than we thought.

1. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street course
2. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
3. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
4. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
5. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
6. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Saturday night doubleheader)
7. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
8. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track
9. October 14 - Las Vegas, CA - oval track

12/03/11 It's interesting to see all the iterations of the 2012 IndyCar schedule that we have rumored since early September.  Today Speed.com reported the following, which agrees exactly what we published on November 19th.

Confirmed Races/Dates
1. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street course
2. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
3. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
4. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
5. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
6. June 3 - Detroit, MI – street course
7. June 24 - Newton, IA - oval track (Saturday night race)
8. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
9. July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
10. August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
11. August 19 - Qingdao, China (street course)
12. Aug. 26 - Sonoma, Calif. road course
13. September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course
14. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track

Previously Known Events That Are Unconfirmed
15. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Saturday night doubleheader)
16. October 13-14 - Las Vegas, NV - oval track

12/01/11 According to this AP report, the IndyCar series is unlikely to return to Las Vegas despite two years remaining on a contract to rent the facility from owner Bruton Smith for the season finale, and IndyCar has yet to sign an official sanctioning agreement with Texas Motor Speedway, a high-banked oval that is among the most popular venues on the schedule, despite Texas announcing the dates already.

Should neither event return, Bernard will be left with a 14-race schedule and be forced to end a condensed season in early September at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.—a previously announced oval that is making its return to the IndyCar Series in 2012.

We have updated the anticipated 2012 IndyCar schedule below.

According to AR1.com sources, Sao Paulo is set for 2012 and beyond
11/22/11 According to AR1.com sources, the 4th race of the season on the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil is now signed with a multi-year deal.  So we have made that race bold (=confirmed) below.  So unless another race is added, that leaves just the season ending Las Vegas race up in the air.  The date below is correct, we just do not know yet whether Randy Bernard can make the street race happen in time for 2012.

11/20/11 The Toronto and Edmonton IndyCar race websites now list the dates of their 2012 races, confirming the dates we listed below, so those two races are now shown as bold.  However, according to this 33TV.com article, Texas Motor Speedway President Eddie Gossage told Texas television station KDAF on November 18th that he still does not have a signed contract for 2012 and beyond with INDYCAR and that he can no longer guarantee the date. zzzz

The station, surrounded by live quotes from Gossage, says in the video which accompanies the article, "But for the first time in more than a decade at TMS, IndyCar racing isn't assured and may be in jeopardy."  Any race that is flat-easy (100% throttle) and takes little driver talent should not be part of a sport.  It isn't a sport if the athlete's talent doesn't matter, something the good drivers have complained about for years.  The risk of death or serious injury doesn't justify the reward (winning knowing you 'drove' better than everyone else)

11/19/11 Mid-Ohio has also confirmed their 2012 IndyCar date.  Dates in bold confirmed by either track or series.
  1. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street/airfield course
  2. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
  3. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
  4. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course 
  5. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
  6. June 3 - Detroit, MI - road course
  7. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race 1 - No signed contract)
  8. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race 2 - No signed contract) 
  9. June 23 - Newton, IA - oval track (Sat night race)
  10. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
  11. July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
  12. August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
  13. August 19 - Qingdao, China - street course 
  14. August 26 - Sonoma, CA - road course
  15. September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course (Date confirmed, but money issues)
  16. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track (Sat Night Race)
  17. October 13-14 - Las Vegas, NV - oval track (could become street race)
    Others Possible deals
    Indianapolis - Road Course
    Kentucky - Oval track
    Porto Alegre, Brazil - street course (IndyCar wanted too much money)
    Bold = Confirmed Date

11/19/11 The IndyStar's guess at the 2012 schedule is similar to ours, but the China and Sonoma dates are reversed with Sonoma on its traditional late-August date and China on September 23rd.

March 25: St. Pete
April 1: Barber
April 15: Long Beach
(expected) April 29: Sao Paulo
May 27: Indy
June 3: Belle Isle
June 9: Texas doubleheader
June 24: Iowa
(expected) July 8: Toronto
(expected) July 22: Edmonton
Aug. 5: Mid-Ohio
(expected) Aug. 26: Infineon
Sept. 2: Baltimore
Sept. 15: Fontana
(maybe) Sept. 23: China
Oct. 14: Las Vegas

11/10/11 Turns out that IndyCar announced the China race to be held August 19th next year.  See Hot News page for announcement.  The schedule below has been updated.

11/09/11 Here is what we think will be announced for the 2012 schedule.  We have a gut feeling the China race is now dead so IndyCar is looking for a replacement race.

March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street/airfield course
April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
June 3 - Detroit, MI - road course
June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race 1)
June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race 2) 
June 23 - Newton, IA - oval track (Sat night race)
July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
August 19 - Qingdao, China - street course 
August 26 - Sonoma, CA - road course
September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course
September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track (Sat Night Race)
October 13-14 - Las Vegas, NV - oval track (could become night Street Race)
Others Possible Rent-A-Track deals
Phoenix - Oval track
Milwaukee - Oval track
Kentucky - Oval track
Porto Alegre, Brazil - street course (IndyCar wanted too much money)
Bold = Confirmed Date

11/09/11 Indy Star's Curt Cavin reports that IndyCar has reached out to Phoenix Raceway boss Bryan Sperber about the possibility of holding a race at that 1-mile oval, a certain recipe for disaster - another oval race where you will be able to shoot a cannon in the grandstands and not hit anyone.  If true then IndyCar is getting desperate in their bid to artificially fill the 2012 schedule with oval races that have proven time and time again to be failures for IndyCars.  One would think that lesson was hit home when IndyCar tried to give away 80,000 to 100,000 free tickets to the Las Vegas race and hardly anyone showed up.  It was embarrassing to say the least, and that was before Dan Wheldon was tragically killed.  Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.  Albert Einstein

Does that mean IndyCar should give up oval races?  No.  It means you cannot hold an IndyCar race in a market already oversold with NASCAR races and expect to come out looking like anything but a loser.  If IndyCar wants to rent tracks, it should rent places like Road America where it is not oversold with NASCAR and you don't have huge grandstands full of fans dressed as empty seats.

11/08/11 A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, Randy Bernard said the 2012 IndyCar schedule would be announced on Friday in Las Vegas.  The only thing announced that weekend with regard to the 2012 schedule was that it was in a state of flux.  Then he said it would be announced within 2 weeks.  That never happened either.  Will there be a 2012 IndyCar season?  Dan Berkowitz
Dear Dan, We suspect the schedule is still not done and hence the holdup.  Speculation is that there are issues with Texas (Gossage wants to pay less now that Texas is not the race right after Indy), or China (maybe it won't happen and Randy has to find a replacement), or Road America (outside chance of a doubleheader with ALMS in August), or the 2nd Brazil race (it apparently could still happen), or Las Vegas (given the financial bloodbath - minuscule crowd - on the oval, the street race must be considered.  It's safer too.), or Baltimore (it could go away because the race lost money because of startup costs.  Either race organizers pay the city and other vendors what they owe or you can kiss this race goodbye) or all of the above.  Then, they have to coordinate the race dates with TV timeslots, and most of them are already taken for 2012.  Mark C.

10/02/11 With the money-losing Kentucky race now off the schedule for next year, the 2nd race in Brazil toast (see rumor updates below), Laguna Seca won't happen, nor will the Las Vegas street race, so the rumored 17-race 2012 IndyCar schedule could now look like this, and that assumes that the China deal doesn't fall through, which it now sounds like could happen too:

  1. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street/airfield course
  2. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
  3. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
  4. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
  5. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
  6. June 3 - Detroit, MI - road course
  7. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race 1)
  8. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race 2) 
  9. June 24 - Newton, IA - oval track (Sat night race)
  10. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
  11. July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
  12. August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
  13. August 19 - Qingdao, China - street course (might not happen, deal not signed yet)
  14. September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course
  15. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track (Sat Night Race)
  16. September 23 - Sonoma, CA - road course (will move to August if China race falls through)
  17. October 13-14 - Las Vegas, NV - oval track
    Bold = Confirmed Date  zzzz

09/30/11 Randy Bernard told the Indy Star he plans to announce the 2012 schedule Oct. 14 in Las Vegas.

09/22/11 With the money-losing New Hampshire race now off the schedule for next year, the hypothetical 2012 IndyCar schedule could now look like this:

  1. March 11 - Porto Alegre, Brazil - street course
  2. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street/airfield course
  3. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
  4. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
  5. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
  6. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
  7. June 3 - Detroit, MI - road course
  8. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race)
  9. June 24 - Newton, IA - oval track (Sat night race)
  10. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
  11. July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
  12. August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
  13. August 19 - Qingdao, China - street course
  14. September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course
  15. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track (Sat Night Race)
  16. September 23 - Laguna Seca, CA - road course
  17. September 30 - Sparta, KY - oval track (Questionable according to common sense sources)
  18. October 13-14 - Las Vegas, NV - oval track & street course (TWIN race?)
    Bold = Confirmed Date 

09/19/11 You can strike Road America off the hypothetical calendar below as we have learned there will be no IndyCar race there in 2012.

09/19/11 Talk in Japan this past weekend was that the China race, if it happens, could be in August, which means existing races in August, like Infineon and Mid-Ohio could be impacted.

09/18/11 2012 Schedule updated now that the Iowa date has been confirmed - weekend of June 23/24

09/18/11 Another rumor has the 2nd Brazil race as the season opener on March 11th.

  1. March 11 - Porto Alegre, Brazil - street course
  2. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street/airfield course
  3. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
  4. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
  5. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
  6. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
  7. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race)
  8. June 17 - Loudon, NH - oval track 
  9. June 24 - Newton, IA - oval track (Sat night race)
  10. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
  11. July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
  12. August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
  13. August 19 - Qingdao, China - street course
  14. August 26 - Sonoma, CA - road course
  15. September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course
  16. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track (Sat Night Race)
  17. September 30 - Sparta, KY - oval track 
  18. October 13-14 - Las Vegas, NV - oval track & street course (TWIN race?)
    Bold = Confirmed Date

09/09/11 In the hypothetical 2012 IndyCar schedule below we have switched the Elkhart Lake and Loudon races.  Elkhart Lake, if it were to happen, is most likely to run as a doubleheader with ALMS in August we hear.  Loudon then moves to late June, making it four oval races in a row - Indy -->Texas -->Iowa -->Loudon, after a run of four road/street circuits to start the season.

09/07/11 Hypothetically this is how the 2012 IndyCar schedule could grow to 18 events, 20 races.  If Elkhart Lake does not make it on the schedule, then add back in the Sparta, Kentucky oval.

  1. March 25 - St. Petersburg, FL - street/airfield course
  2. April 1 - Birmingham, AL - road course
  3. April 15 - Long Beach, CA - street course
  4. April 29 - Sao Paulo, Brazil - street course
  5. May 27 - Indianapolis, IN - oval track
  6. June 9 - Ft. Worth, TX - oval track (Sat night TWIN race)
  7. June 16 - Newton, IA - oval track (Sat night race)
  8. June 23 - Loudon, NH - oval track
  9. July 8 - Toronto, Canada - street course
  10. July 22 - Edmonton, Canada - street course
  11. August 5 - Lexington, OH - road course
  12. August 12 - Elkhart Lake, WI - road course
  13. August 26 - Sonoma, CA - road course
  14. September 2 - Baltimore, MD - street course
  15. September 15 - Fontana, CA - oval track (Sat Night Race)
  16. September 30 - Qingdao, China - street course
  17. October 14 - Porto Alegre, Brazil - street course
  18. October 20-21 - Las Vegas, NV - oval track & street course (TWIN race?)
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