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Grand Prix

SPORTS
September 1, 2013
A look at the Grand Prix of Baltimore through the lenses of the Baltimore Sun and Getty photographers.
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SPORTS
By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
Sebastien Bourdais, who will start Sunday's Grand Prix of Baltimore from the last spot, registered the fastest time in the final practice before the race, finishing a lap of the 2.04-mile circuit in 1 minute, 18.4535 seconds Sunday morning. Bourdais, a 34-year-old native from Le Mans, France whose best outing this season was a runner-up finish to Scott Dixon at the Honda Indy Toronto 2 on July 13, lost his fastest lap for causing a red flag during Saturday's qualifying session and was bumped to the 24th spot.
SPORTS
By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
If there was one driver feeling confident about his chances at Sunday's Grand Prix of Baltimore, it might have been Ryan Hunter-Reay, who won last year's race en route to capturing the IZOD IndyCar Series title. But his bid to become the event's first two-time winner ended shortly after his No. 1 car stopped in the 43rd lap on the course in Turn 10. “We just had an electronic issue that made the car stall on the start,” the 32-year-old Dallas native said. “And then we were ultimately sidelined because of a power outage in the car. The electronics completely failed.” Hunter-Reay said the car hadn't had a severe mechanical problem since the 2011 Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 27, which made Sunday's issue just as bewildering.
SPORTS
By Don Markus and The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
Ryan Hunter-Reay, who won the IndyCar Series race in last year's Grand Prix of Baltimore, had a tough time defending his championship Sunday. After starting eighth, Hunter-Reay's DHL Chevrolet had “electronics issues” nearly from the start. His car stalled on the first lap and he dropped down to 22nd. After clawing his way back into the top 10, the same problem resurfaced and Hunter-Reay had to drop out of the race on the 42nd lap. He was 20th at the time. Hunter-Reay said afterward that the initial was an anti-stall mechanism malfunction at the start, but wasn't sure what caused his car to stall later on. “It's heartbreaking,” he said
SPORTS
By Don Markus and The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
As the debris cleared and Simon Pagenaud surveyed both the wreckage and the drivers still in contention in Sunday's IZOD IndyCar Series race at the Grand Prix of Baltimore, a simple thought came to the 29-year-old Frenchman. “I knew I was on fresher tires than the guys around me, I knew I had a faster car, but we needed to get going,” Pagenaud said. Aware that many of the circuit's biggest names had either left the 2.04 mile track for good or were well back in the pack - from pole sitter Scott Dixon to defending champion Ryan Hunter-Reay to three-time Indianapolis 500 champ Dario Franchitti to points leader Helio Castroneves to 2011 race winner Will Power - Pagenaud said he “ended up pushing as hard as I could.” Passing reigning Indianapolis 500 champion Tony Kanaan after the next-to-last yellow flag was lifted, and doing the same to Marco Andretti after the final restart, Pagenaud's No. 77 Schmidt Hamilton HP Motorports Honda pushed to the front and held off young American Josef Newgarden and fellow Frenchman Sebastien Bourdais to win the crash-filled 75-lap race by a little more than four seconds.
SPORTS
By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
Simona De Silvestro's 25th birthday Sunday was one reason to celebrate. But the 24-year-old native of Thun, Switzerland gave herself another reason by scoring her best finish in almost three years. Driving the No. 78 car, De Silvestro placed fifth in the Grand Prix of Baltimore. It is her first top-five showing since finishing fourth at the 2011 Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 27. “It was kind of a crazy race,” said De Silvestro, who began the race from the 17th position.
SPORTS
By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
In his first foray in the IZOD IndyCar Series, Stefan Wilson finished 16th at the Grand Prix of Baltimore on Sunday. It was a decent showing for the 24-year-old native of Woodall, England, who drove the No. 18 car. “It was pretty interesting,” Wilson said. “So much to learn. Going into the race, I wasn't sure what to expect. I've never raced an IndyCar race, I've never raced a race longer than 40 laps. So to go and do 75 laps here, I knew it was going to be pretty tough physically.
NEWS
By Erin Cox, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
The whine of Grand Prix's race cars carried across the Inner Harbor this weekend as Roland Keh stood on the steps of his Little Italy restaurant, surveying a deserted street. "As you can see, not a normal Saturday," said Keh, co-owner of Amiccis. "The foot traffic is not here. " The first year IndyCar racing came to downtown Baltimore, Little Italy restaurants banded together to put tables on the sidewalks and welcome fans. By the third year, Keh and his compatriots abandoned special plans, hopeful but not optimistic that patrons would show up. While the three-day festival of speed brings more than 100,000 people to the Inner Harbor, business owners far from the race track report lackluster sales as Grand Prix of Baltimore patrons stay close to the track and non-race visitors shy away.
SPORTS
Peter Schmuck | September 1, 2013
No doubt, a lot of open-wheel racing afficionados were shaking their heads after the Grand Prix of Baltimore turned into a demolition derby on Sunday, but the "chaos" that prevailed on the debris-strewn downtown course was just what the event needed to capture our admittedly primative imaginations. This is America. We don't like soccer. We don't like chess. We didn't even like real baseball until the steroid scandal shamed us back into it. Let's be honest, we claim we want to support public broadcasting, but we'd rather watch Shark Week.
SPORTS
By Justin George, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
As excited kids clung to fences and people packed grandstands to catch glimpses of IndyCars blurring around the streets of Baltimore, other Grand Prix of Baltimore attendees could be found in unlikely places Sunday. Indoors. Exhausted, they were reclining on chairs in Convention Center nooks, stacked up like cordwood in a downtown sandwich shop and decamped like heat-seared refugees to the orange and blue carpet of the Baltimore Hilton's air-conditioned walkway. "It's a lot cooler in here," said David Allen, 19, of Baltimore County, who sought shelter in the hotel walkway, which stretches to the Convention Center and offered a clear view of the track, sheltered from the heat of the day. The spot came in handy Sunday as temperatures rose into the upper 80s, and humidity hovered around a soupy 66 percent, according to the National Weather Service.
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