The roaring sound of NTT INDYCAR SERIES engines will fill the Music City to mark the return to racing this weekend following the summer break, with Felix Rosenqvist particularly excited to take on a spectacular new race on the streets of Nashville.
Titled the Big Machine Music City Grand Prix, the Nashville event is debuting on the INDYCAR schedule this year, featuring a 2.17-mile (3.5 km) temporary street course that takes in two passes across water as drivers race up and down the Korean War Veterans Memorial Bridge.
Having achieved many of his career highlights at similar street circuit events across the globe, Felix Rosenqvist is understandably keen to head out and explore the limits of INDYCAR’s newest addition.
“It’s been quite nice with a relaxing few weeks away, but you miss the racing very quickly and I’m now fully charged up for the final part of the season,” says Felix Rosenqvist. “Nashville – that will be something special. This is probably the one race I’ve been looking forward to the most all year, and that has not changed after driving the track on the simulator.
“It’s a very interesting layout with a good mix of 90-degree corners, technical combinations and proper overtaking opportunities coming off the bridge. Combined with the city itself, I think this place has the potential to become a classic.”
Adding to the sense of a big weekend, a grid of 27 cars will battle it out along the Nashville course – the largest number of entries, excluding the Indianapolis 500, since Long Beach in 2013.
With winds of positivity blowing throughout the paddock, Rosenqvist hopes to finally get his fair share of luck as well after a difficult 2021 campaign to date.
“This is a great opportunity for a fresh start,” says the Arrow McLaren SP driver. “We’re back from a long break, heading straight to a race where nobody has ever been, and it’s a street track on top of that. Historically this combination of venue, and the need to adapt and learn fast, has been key to some of my greatest wins. On paper, this is a perfect opportunity and one that we will do everything to grab.”
Practice for the Big Machine Music City Grand Prix begins on Friday, with qualifying taking place on Saturday and the 80-lap race going green on Sunday afternoon.
NTT INDYCAR SERIES | Rd. 11
Big Machine Music City Grand Prix
All times local (U.S. Central)
Friday 6 August
Free Practice 1: 3:10-4:25 pm
Saturday 7 August
Free Practice 2: 12:00-12:45 pm
Qualifying: 3:30-4:45 pm
Sunday 8 August
Warm-up: 12:00-12:30 pm
Race (80 laps): 4:45 pm
NTT INDYCAR SERIES | After 10/16 races
1: Alex Palou (ESP), Ganassi, 384 p.
2: Pato O’Ward (MEX), AMSP, 345 p.
3: Scott Dixon (NZL), Ganassi, 328 p.
4: Josef Newgarden (USA), Penske, 315 p.
5: Marcus Ericsson (SWE), Ganassi, 280 p.
25: Felix Rosenqvist (SWE), AMSP, 94 p.