September 15th, 2012 is date for IndyCar Fontana return

UPDATE See the update in red below regarding Jimmy Vasser.

09/06/11 Mark your calendar for Sept. 15, 2012 – that’s when the thrill, excitement and speed of the IZOD IndyCar Series will return to Auto Club Speedway.

The stars of the series, which includes Helio Castroneves, Dario Franchitti and this year’s Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon, along with high-profile owners Roger Penske, Chip Ganassi, A.J. Foyt and Bobby Rahal will visit Southern California’s premier motorsports facility for the first time in seven years with the intense competition, high-energy show scheduled to be run at night under the lights.

Tickets for the highly anticipated event will go on sale on Sept. 12, 2011. Ticket pricing are as follows: Reserved Club area $60; Reserved $50; General Admission $30; Kids 12 and under free in General Admission with Lefty’s Kids Club membership and camping packages will be available from $255 to $330.

Sam Hornish Jr. won the Inaugural IndyCar Series race at Auto Club Speedway in 2002 in an exciting finish that saw him beat Jaques Lazier across the finish line by a mere 0.0281 seconds. The series continued to run at Auto Club Speedway through 2005 and provided race fans with speed and excitement each time it visited the speedway. Some of those highlights include:

  • October 28, 2000: During CART IndyCar qualifying, Gil de Ferran set the track record for fastest lap at 241.426 mph (388.537 km/h). This was also a world speed record for the fastest lap of a closed course.
  • March 24, 2002: Sam Hornish Jr. wins the first IndyCar Series race at Auto Club Speedway by 0.0281 seconds over Jaques Lazier.
  • November 3, 2002: Jimmy Vasser won the final 500 mile race in CART/Champ Car (now defunct) history driving a BK01 Lola-Ford with Shell sponsorship. The race also set the track record (at the time) for average race speed at 197.995 mph (318.642 km/h). It stands as the fastest 500-mile race of all-time.
  • September 21, 2003: During the IndyCar Series race (Toyota Indy 400), Sam Hornish, Jr. set the track record for fastest average speed during a race at 207.151 mph (333.377 km/h) but it was a 400-miler, not a 500-miler. This is still the current track record.
  • September 20, 2003: IndyCar Series qualifying record set – (one lap): Helio Castroneves, 226.757 mph (364.930 km/h).

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