Skip to content

What to watch for: IndyCar at Sao Paulo

May 5, 2013, 9:35 AM EDT

Sao Paulo Indy 300 - Day 2 Getty Images

Land of opportunity

Sao Paulo’s multiple passing zones mean that a major climb from the back of the grid can be pulled off. The changes to Turns 1 and 2 included the addition of 10 extra feet at Turn 2 for the drivers to work with, but the key opportunities remain the right-hander at Turn 5 and the Turn 11 hairpin that follows the longest straightaway of any street course in the world (nearly one mile long).

A different Samba

That aforementioned Turn 1-2 complex is known as the S of Samba, which also saw its curbs lowered as part of its modifications from track builder NZR Consulting. It’s a faster and wider section now, but as we’ve seen this weekend, it’s no less tricky as guys like Simon Pagenaud, Tristan Vautier and Tony Kanaan have all been involved in incidents at that part of the course. Could we see more of them there today?

Kanaan fights on

Despite dealing with torn ligaments in his right hand, Tony Kanaan has shown his trademark perseverance this weekend in Sao Paulo. Hitting a tire barrier at the S of Samba in Saturday practice didn’t keep him from cracking the Firestone Fast Six in qualifying later on. He’ll lead the Brazilian drivers into battle today from fourth starting position (Ana Beatriz starts 16th, Helio Castroneves from 18th), and there’s no doubt that a win from TK would set off a raucous celebration in the stands at Anhembi Park.

Is this Viso’s time?

The days of regarding Venezuelan driver E.J. Viso as an also-ran may be coming to an end. He has shown to be more competitive in his first campaign for Andretti Autosport, and on Saturday, he broke through in qualifying with a second-place result (his best ever start in the IZOD IndyCar Series). Things seem to be coming together for him and while he’s always been confident that he could succeed with good resources, those that didn’t have the same sentiments are starting to take notice now.

IZOD IndyCar Series – Sao Paulo Indy 300
Starting Grid

Row 1
1-Ryan Hunter-Reay
5-EJ Viso

Row 2
10-Dario Franchitti
11-Tony Kanaan

Row 3
27-James Hinchcliffe
9-Scott Dixon

Row 4
7 -Sebastien Bourdais
78-Simona de Silvestro

Row 5
19-Justin Wilson
25-Marco Andretti

Row 6
4-JR Hildebrand
14-Takuma Sato

Row 7
22-Oriol Servia
20-Ed Carpenter

Row 8
98-Alex Tagliani
18-Ana Beatriz

Row 9
83-Charlie Kimball
3-Helio Castroneves

Row 10
15-Graham Rahal
6-Sebastian Saavedra

Row 11
55-Tristan Vautier
12-Will Power

Row 12
77-Simon Pagenaud
16-James Jakes

Row 13
67-Josef Newgarden

Watch today’s Sao Paulo Indy 300 online and on your mobile device.

Latest Posts
  1. Hamilton unsure what to make of Ferrari threat

    Apr 19, 2015, 8:00 AM EDT

    Mideast Bahrain F1 GP Auto Racing AP

    Starting from pole position, Hamilton goes in search of his third win of the season in Bahrain.

  2. Beretta scores World Challenge pole at Long Beach

    Apr 18, 2015, 10:00 PM EDT

    Photo: PWC Photo: PWC

    Beretta’s Ferrari to start up front for Round 5 of season.

  3. Newgarden puts CFH into Fast Six for first time; seeks elusive Long Beach result

    Apr 18, 2015, 9:15 PM EDT

    JosefLBgrid Getty Images

    Newgarden qualifies sixth for Long Beach race, best outside IndyCar’s established “power trio.”

  4. Penske qualifying dominance continues in Long Beach

    Apr 18, 2015, 9:05 PM EDT

    Photo: INDYCAR Photo: INDYCAR

    With 1-2-5 in qualifying at Long Beach, Team Penske’s hot streak on Saturdays continues to open 2015.

  5. Taylor brothers, BMW take Long Beach TUDOR Championship wins

    Apr 18, 2015, 8:49 PM EDT

    Photo: IMSA Photo: IMSA

    Polesitting entries bring it home Saturday at Long Beach for the TUDOR Championship.

  6. Dixon takes first step to erasing Long Beach kryptonite with P3 in qualifying

    Apr 18, 2015, 8:15 PM EDT

    DixonLBquals Getty Images

    Scott Dixon hopes for success at Long Beach, a track he considers a “thorn in the side.”

  7. Hunter-Reay upholds Honda’s honor, qualifies fourth at Long Beach

    Apr 18, 2015, 8:05 PM EDT

    RHRp4 Getty Images

    Ryan Hunter-Reay begins rebound from NOLA wreck by qualifying fourth in Long Beach.

  8. Townsend Bell confirmed in DRR/Kingdom Racing entry for Indy 500

    Apr 18, 2015, 6:44 PM EDT

    Photo: INDYCAR AP

    NBCSN IndyCar analyst Townsend Bell returns to the Indianapolis 500 with Dreyer & Reinbold/Kingdom Racing.

  9. Castroneves secures pole in IndyCar qualifying at Long Beach

    Apr 18, 2015, 6:19 PM EDT

    HelioPoe Getty Images

    Helio Castroneves brings Team Penske its third consecutive pole to start the season.

  10. WATCH: IndyCar qualifying from Long Beach

    Apr 18, 2015, 5:52 PM EDT

    Ryan Hunter-Reay, Sebastien Bourdais Ryan Hunter-Reay, Sebastien Bourdais

    IndyCar qualifying about to go on NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra.

  11. Jack Harvey wins last second pole for Indy Lights race in Long Beach

    Apr 18, 2015, 5:28 PM EDT

    Photo: Indy Lights Photo: Indy Lights

    Jack Harvey will start from the pole for Sunday’s Indy Lights race in Long Beach.

  12. GP2: Vandoorne fights back to claim Bahrain feature race win

    Apr 18, 2015, 5:00 PM EDT

    _G7C7421

    American driver Alexander Rossi performs admirably to finish third, having lost the lead of the race with two laps remaining.

  13. Alonso: Reaching Q2 a nice surprise for McLaren

    Apr 18, 2015, 4:00 PM EDT

    Mideast Bahrain F1 GP Auto Racing AP

    Jenson Button was less fortunate in qualifying, though, as a problem on his car sidelined him without setting a lap time.

  14. Carlos Sainz Jr shines as top rookie in Bahrain qualifying

    Apr 18, 2015, 3:15 PM EDT

    AUTO-PRIX-BHR-F1 Getty Images

    Despite expecting to struggle in Bahrain, Sainz will start the race from ninth place on Sunday.

  15. Grosjean disappointed with P10 in Bahrain GP qualifying

    Apr 18, 2015, 2:40 PM EDT

    Grosjean 184 Getty Images

    Grosjean believes he could have qualified higher up the grid, but is pleased to have maintained his 100% Q3 record in 2015.

  16. Simon Pagenaud fastest in IndyCar’s final Long Beach practice

    Apr 18, 2015, 2:12 PM EDT

    Simon Pagenaud Simon Pagenaud

    Simon Pagenaud led IndyCar’s final practice session in Long Beach.

  17. Daniil Kvyat puzzled by Q1 elimination in Bahrain

    Apr 18, 2015, 2:07 PM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of Bahrain - Qualifying Getty Images

    Daniel Ricciardo fares far better in the sister Red Bull, qualifying seventh in Bahrain.

  18. Webber hits out at tire-focused single seater series

    Apr 18, 2015, 2:00 PM EDT

    Australian F1 Grand Prix Getty Images

    Former Red Bull driver believes that the focus should not be on tire management, but instead on driver ability and pace.

  19. Rosberg disappointed to qualify behind Vettel in Bahrain

    Apr 18, 2015, 1:30 PM EDT

    AUTO-PRIX-BHR-F1 Getty Images

    Rosberg misses out on the front row for the second time in three races, exposing Mercedes to the threat from Ferrari in the race.

  20. IndyCar: Another flip at the Coyne: Conor Daly to fill in for Rocky Moran Jr.

    Apr 18, 2015, 1:04 PM EDT

    Photo: Chris Owens/IndyCar Photo: Chris Owens/IndyCar

    Conor Daly gets a last-minute IndyCar shot with Dale Coyne Racing.