The 2023 NTT IndyCar Series season gets underway next weekend with the Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg presented by RP Funding.

There has been plenty of changes up and down pit-road over the off-season with Chip Ganassi Racing brining in both Marcus Armstrong and Takuma Sato while Taylor Kiel has also joined the team.

Over at Dale Coyne Racing, highly rated Sting Ray Robb has replaced Sato as David Malukas’ teammate.

Benjamin Pedersen is one part of an all-new line-up at AJ Foyt Racing as he teams up with the returning Santino Ferrucci.

Alexander Rossi has moved over to Arrow McLaren from Andretti Autosport as the team expands to three full-time cars.

On the broadcasting side of things, NBC Network television will broadcast 15 of the 17 races live including two days of qualifying for the 107th running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge.

In addition, fans of the NTT IndyCar Series will get a behind-the-scenes look at the sport that they love with the CW’s 100 Days To Indy documentary that will debut on April 27.

Speaking about the upcoming season, President and CEO of Penske Entertainment Corporation, Mark Miles says:

This is a year of unprecedented coverage of the stars of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. “Between the front row seat that The CW Network will provide fans and the best seat in the house provided by NBC, there won’t be a storyline without a spotlight. We look forward to taking INDYCAR’s fierce and intense competition to a new and more youthful audience throughout 2023.

This will be the most sustainable season in INDYCAR SERIES history, as the series and its teams continue to work to develop renewable technologies.

Among the highlights are the first use of Shell’s 100% Renewable Race Fuel and continued use of renewable diesel for all INDYCAR team transporters supporting the series. The use of the Firestone Firehawk alternate race tire with a green sidewall, made from guayule rubber, will expand to all street circuit races after its successful debut last August in the Big Machine Music City Grand Prix on the streets of Nashville, Tennessee.

Finally, the NTT INDYCAR SERIES will continue to prepare for a more sustainable future as development continues with Chevrolet and Honda for the 2024 engine package. Testing of the 2.2-liter turbocharged V-6 with hybrid technology will take place throughout 2023.

2022 was a record-breaking season, with two-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion Will Power becoming the sport’s all-time leader in pole positions (68). In addition, the Indianapolis 500 featured the fastest pole speed in history, fastest front row in history and fastest field in history. The most competitive open-wheel racing series on the planet was highlighted by the most on-track passes in seven seasons. The finish at the Big Machine Music City Grand Prix – Scott Dixon edged Scott McLaughlin by .1067 of a second – was the closest on a street circuit in INDYCAR SERIES history.

More records are in sight in 2023. Six-time INDYCAR SERIES champion Scott Dixon looks to add his name to the Astor Challenge Cup for a record seventh time – tying the legendary A.J. Foyt. Helio Castroneves returns to Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May for a second attempt at a record fifth “500” victory.

Speaking about the season to come, President of IndyCar, Jay Frye says:

2022 was another record-setting season in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES. “Each offseason, in collaboration with our owners, teams and drivers, we evaluate all aspects of competition-related initiatives and believe our updates will make 2023 even more competitive. Our growing paddock is a testament to the energy and momentum, and we are excited to get the season started.”

One of the major changes for this year is that a drivers qualifying time will not start until they have crossed the alternate start/finish timing line.

There have been a number of key safety enhancements for the 2023 season.

A number of adjustments are being made for the upcoming INDYCAR SERIES season with an eye on safety and technical performance.

From a safety perspective, 2023 will feature:

  • In partnership with Indiana University Health, a new INDYCAR Medical Unit providing an environment for consistent and accessible care during each INDYCAR event
  • Mandatory rain vanes to wick water from the aeroscreen in wet conditions
  • New safety-inspired rear attenuator and stronger rear-wheel tethers
  • New highly visible LED rain lights on the rear of the race cars
  • New and higher headrest protection
  • A new mandatory and more forgiving steering arm designed to take more punishment without breaking
  • For the first time in NTT INDYCAR SERIES history, alternate-compound tires will be used on an oval.
  • The Sunday, Aug. 27 race at World Wide Technology Raceway will feature the Firestone Firehawk alternates.
  • Teams will follow the same rules as road and street circuits, with mandatory use of a new set of the alternate tire compound during the race.

Also new for 2023 is the addition of EM Motorsports Telemetry to the EM Marshalling System, which debuted in 2022.

The new telemetry system will give all race teams the ability to quickly receive reliable information and react with split-second decision making. It will also introduce more over-the-air features new to INDYCAR.

From an aerodynamic standpoint, the 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES rulebook is allowing:

  • Optional short oval barge boards on road and street course events
  • At Texas Motor Speedway, the underwing sidewall has been made optional
  • On the IMS oval:
  • New optional underwing flap wicker
  • New mandatory stability wickers
  • The option of a new additional underwing inner bargeboard (also optional at other ovals)
  • Optional underwing road and street course strakes
  • Speedway infill wicker made optional (also at Texas Motor Speedway)
  • Additionally, a new pillar specification will allow 3 degrees more range for the adjustable rear wing on the IMS oval. It will increase the options for teams looking for additional or less downforce.

Tino Belli, INDYCAR director of aerodynamic development stated:

“At the Indy 500, drivers in the pack can run up to 10% more downforce than last year. “With the increased rear wing range, teams can still try and trim out the rear wing for end of race speed – and go for the win – if they have worked their way up into the lead group.

For further information on the 2023 NTT IndyCar Series season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg presented by RP Funding click here.

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