Heading into the Grand Prix of Baltimore, Marco Andretti's performance has improved significantly this season. On a team that now features reigning IZOD IndyCar Series champion and defending Grand Prix of Baltimore champion Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti is currently fourth in the standings.
When Sage Karam drives in the Firestone Indy Lights Series race at the Grand Prix of Baltimore on Sunday, he will be chasing 21-year-old points leader Carlos Munoz of Brazil and 20-year-old Gabby Chavez of Colombia, one of his Schmidt Peterson Motorsports teammates, for the overall championship of open-wheel racing's Triple-A.
As summer began last year, with the Grand Prix of Baltimore less than three months away, the organizers had sold zero tickets. They'd landed zero sponsorships. And hadn't yet put out a single advertisement.
Every morning, Monday through Friday, blogger Matt Vensel will hook you up with reading material -- mostly on the Ravens but with some other Baltimore sports stuff, too -- to skim through as you slug down coffee and slack off at the start of your workday. That way he'll have an excuse to do the same to start his workday, too.
The Grand Prix of Baltimore was IndyCar points leader Will Power's chance to wrap up his first title on a street course, the kind of race track that is his forte. He couldn't do it. Now he has to go to Fontana, Calif., to a 500-mile race on an oval. The mere thought of it is enough to make Michael Andretti, who owns the car driven by Power's main foe, Ryan Hunter-Reay, just a little bit cocky.
Organizers managed to put together the second running of the Grand Prix of Baltimore in about 90 days, but the event must run smoothly enough to convince Baltimore business owners and fans that is worth the trouble.
The first round of gleaming race cars will roar through downtown streets early Friday, marking the start of the second annual three day open wheel racing festival – and a victory for city officials and organizers who struggled to resurrect the event after last year's financial flop.
Michael Andretti, wearing his promoter's hat, stopped for a chat in the Baltimore Convention Center on Thursday afternoon. The IndyCar owner, who has taken on the job of organizing the Grand Prix of Baltimore this weekend through his company Andretti Sports Marketing, looked relaxed.
With the Grand Prix of Baltimore a little more than one month away, the race's promoter and owner of three cars competing in the IndyCar Series this year, Michael Andretti talked about the upcoming event through the streets of the city.
This year, JF Thormann will continue to help make winners of Andretti Autosport's drivers on Baltimore's streets. But as an officer of another company, Andretti Sports Marketing, he will also have a role in making the race a success.
Ryan Hunter-Reay has been an "up and coming" driver for much of the last decade in the IZOD IndyCar Series, but that part of his career is over now. The Florida native has won the last three races and leads the championship points chase.
Despite financing more than $140 million city contracts in the past 12 years, donating tens of thousands of dollars to Democratic causes and being a member of Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's inner circle, J.P. Grant has largely avoided the limelight.
The team promoting Baltimore's Grand Prix — a group announced by city officials this week following the collapse of two other race organizers — has fewer than four months to hawk sponsorships, market the event, sell tickets and set up the race course and grandstands.