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Grand Prix

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.
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BUSINESS
By Eileen Ambrose, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
David Williams' Columbia-based marketing company makes heavy use of data to help business clients reach customers and maintain their loyalty. As a racecar driver, the CEO of Merkle Inc. also sifts through data to improve his performance on the track. "It's amazing how the use of data has evolved in motor sports," Williams said. "There is a computer in my car that captures more than 100 elements associated with the vehicle - G-forces and speed and brake pressure. We are capturing all this information in real time from that car, and after a race or qualifying or practice session, we download all that data into a computer and we can analyze foot-by-foot around that racetrack how fast we were going.
SPORTS
By Don Markus, The Baltimore Sun and By Don Markus, The Baltimore Sun | September 1, 2013
The conclusion of the 2013 Grand Prix of Baltimore on Sunday night meant that life would soon return to normal on the two miles of downtown streets used for the three days of racing. The question looming over the finish line on Pratt Street is whether the event itself will return in 2014. It appears that those involved - from drivers and team owners to fans and local organizers to city and state officals - hope the IZOD IndyCar Series will be back for a fourth year next summer.
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.
SPORTS
By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun | August 31, 2013
Just a rookie on the Firestone Indy Lights Series, Jack Hawksworth has already won twice this year. But the happiness he felt over those victories did not compare to the elation of winning the pole for Sunday's Indys Lights race at the Grand Prix of Baltimore. Hawksworth, a 22-year-old native of Bradford, England, posted the fastest time in Saturday's qualifying session, finishing a lap of the 2.02-mile course in 1 minute, 24.8128 seconds. That time was more than a half-second better than Carlos Munoz (1:25.3152)
SPORTS
By Don Markus | August 31, 2013
Jack Hawksworth won the pole Saturday for Sunday's Indy Lights race in the Grand Prix of Baltimore.   Hawksworth, who had the top practice run in both sessions on Friday, finished ahead of Indy Lights points leader Carlos Munoz of Colombia and Gabby Chavez, also of Colombia, in the qualifying. The 22-year-old Englishman has won two races this season, both on street courses. His most recent win came at Toronto after earning the pole there as well. Hawksworth's first victory this year came in the season-opener in St. Petersburg, Fla. “It's so important here [to be on the pole]
SPORTS
By Don Markus | August 31, 2013
Some of open-wheel racing's biggest names didn't make it into the Top 12 Saturday for Sunday's Izod IndyCar Series race in the Grand Prix of Baltimore. Dario Franchitti, who has won the pole at four events this year, will start 15 th , one spot ahead of Indianapolis 500 champion Tony Kanaan and three ahead of Marco Andretti. Kanaan, who finished second to Will Power in the inaugural Baltimore race two years ago, said afterward that he thought he was headed for the second round of qualifying before “we got caught up in some traffic” that resulted from a single-car crash involving E.J. Viso.
SPORTS
By Ian Duncan and Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun | August 31, 2013
Race cars whipped around downtown Baltimore on Saturday, turning usually traffic-choked streets into a speedway, their engines filling the air with the sounds of a hornet's hum on the straights and a smoker's cackle at the hairpin turn. As the cars negotiated the two mile course's first turn from Pratt Street onto Light Street during morning warm-ups, spectators lounged in the grandstands or pressed against the barriers, many with cameras in hand trying to freeze the action in a snapshot.
SPORTS
By Edward Lee, The Baltimore Sun | August 31, 2013
Scott Dixon, the only driver to record top 5 finishes in each of the previous two Grand Prix of Baltimore races, will open Sunday's competition in the lead after winning the pole in Saturday's qualifying session. Dixon, a 33-year-old native of Auckland, New Zealand who drives the No. 9 car for Target Chip Ganassi Racing, finished the 2.02-mile course in 1 minute, 18.0838 seconds. It is only the second time this season that Dixon has won the pole, but he is tied with James Hinchcliffe for the most wins in the IZOD IndyCar Series with three victories each.
SPORTS
By Don Markus, The Baltimore Sun | August 31, 2013
Robby Gordon was on his way to winning the 1999 Indianapolis 500. His pit crew kept telling him to keep driving, but as Gordon was less than two laps from getting the checkered flag, he encountered a problem to which many can relate whether they're in a $1 million race car or a rusted clunker. Gordon's car ran out of gas. "I want to sit and cry," Gordon said that day. While one of the universal goals of racing is what race team strategists like Target Chip Ganassi's Mike Hull, whose driver, Scott Dixon, won the pole for today's race, call "full to finish" - having just enough gas left in the tank to get to the end - decisions about when to pit and when to pass often makes the difference between winning and losing.
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