Nigel Mansell’s practice accident before the 1993 Champ Car race once again proved that PIR is not a place for the faint-hearted.
Nigel Mansell’s practice accident before the 1993 Champ Car race once again proved that PIR is not a place for the faint-hearted. Traditionally the first oval of the Champ Car and then IndyCar seasons until 2006, the race was restored to the calendar in 2016. The NASCAR Sprint Cup visits on two occasions each year. Banked at 11 degrees in Turns 1 and 2, and nine degrees in 3 and 4, Phoenix has an awkward dogleg on the backstretch. Drivers are flat-out except for touching the brakes entering Turn 1. Lap times had dipped under 20 seconds before the race switched from CART to IRL, so running in traffic is guaranteed throughout the race. Phoenix was built to replace the Arizona State Fairgrounds dirt oval, which had held races from 1910 until a crash-filled 1962 event.
Fastest Race Lap
Tony Kanaan (Dallara DW12-Chevrolet), 19.7379s, 182.392 mph, Indycars, 2016
Fastest Qualifying Lap
Helio Castroneves (Dallara DW12-Chevrolet), 18.8701s, 190.778 mph, Indycars, 2017