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2012 MAVTV 500 :: IZOD IndyCar Series Championships

AUTO CLUB SPEEDWAY IN FONTANA, CA

Saturday, September 15, 2012 on NBC Sports

 
MAVTV 500 & IndyCar Championships Race Coverage on AmericaJR.com

WATCH: Exclusive Interviews with IndyCar drivers Graham Rahal and Charlie Kimball

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from inside the garage at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. IndyCar races are returning to Detroit on June 3 and Fontana, Calif. on Sept. 15. Closer to home, the IndyCar drivers will be racing on the Streets of Long Beach on April 15. In this video, watch for interviews with Chip Ganassi Racing Drivers Graham Rahal and Charlie Kimball. What are their hopes for the 2012 season? How does it feel to return to the Motor City and Fontana, Calif. this season? How will Danica Patrick's move to NASCAR impact the future of the IndyCar series? How is the Long Beach, Calif. race different from the Fontana, Calif. race? Get those questions answered in this video.

IndyCar drivers excited to return to Detroit and Fontana, Calif. By Jason Rzucidlo

Chip Ganassi IndyCar drivers Graham Rahal, 23, and Charlie Kimball, 26, did some testing on Wednesday at the Auto Club Speedway. They managed to get in only a few laps in before it started to downpour and the weather never let up for the remainder of the day. The 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season kicks off March 25 on the Streets of St. Petersburg. In 2012, the IndyCar series will return to the Streets of Belle Isle in Detroit and the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif.

WATCH: Exclusive interviews with Drivers Bobby Unser, Linda Vaughn and attendees

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo was LIVE at the Riverside International Automotive Museum on Saturday evening. The museum honored three-time Indy 500 champion Bobby Unser at its Legends of Riverside IV special gala. This is the fourth year for the racing film festival and legends gala. In this video, watch for an exclusive interview with honoree Bobby Unser and the first lady of drag racing Linda Vaughn. You'll also hear from attendees Ike Smith from Pacific Grove, Calif., and Dick Woodland from Paso Robles, Calif.

Legendary race car driver Bobby Unser honored in Riverside, Calif. By Jason Rzucidlo

The Riverside International Automotive Museum held its fourth annual "Legends of Riverside" racing film festival and legends gala over the weekend. This year's honoree was Mr. Bobby Unser, 13-time winner of the Pikes Peak Hill Climb and three-time winner of the Indianapolis 500. He was the first driver to surpass the 190 mph average speed at the Indy 500. In addition, Unser was the USAC IndyCar Champion in 1968, 1974 and the IROC Champion in 1975. Racing runs in the family as he is the brother of Al Unser, Jerry Unser and Louie Unser, the father of Robby Unser, and the uncle of Al Unser, Jr. and Johnny Unser.

WATCH: Exclusive interviews with three IndyCar drivers and a Formula Drift Driver

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from outside the Tecate Light Lounge on the Streets of Long Beach road course. Stay tuned for exclusive interviews with race car drivers ahead of this weekend's races in Long Beach, Calif. In this video, watch for remarks from IndyCar drivers Mike Conway (No. 14 Honda and Last year's winner); Ed Carpenter (No. 20 Chevrolet); Simona de Silvestro (No. 78 Lotus); and Formula Drift driver Justin Pawlak (Last year's winner). Don't forget that Belanova and Joan Jett & The Blackhearts will be performing free concerts throughout the weekend.

WATCH: Exclusive interviews with two IndyCar drivers and two LeMans Series drivers

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from outside the Tecate Light Lounge on the Streets of Long Beach road course. Stay tuned for exclusive interviews with race car drivers ahead of this weekend's races in Long Beach, Calif. In this video, watch for remarks from IndyCar drivers Takuma Sato (No. 15 Honda); J.R. Hildebrand (No. 4 Chevrolet); and American LeMans Series drivers Guy Cosmo (No. 2 Ferrari); and Patrick Long (No. 45 Porsche). Don't forget that Belanova and Joan Jett & The Blackhearts will be performing free concerts throughout the weekend.

Firestone Indy Lights drivers complete testing session in Fontana, Calif. By Jason Rzucidlo

Esteban Guerrieri and Sebastian Saavedra finished 1-2 in the 45-lap Firestone Indy Lights race in Long Beach, Calif. on Sunday. Then, their racing teams and seven others loaded up their car haulers and drove 60 miles east to the Auto Club Speedway. The drivers participated in a testing session at the track located in Fontana, Calif. Each driver ran for a few laps on the track, then made some adjustments and got back on. It is all to preview their season-ending race, which will also take place at the Auto Club Speedway on Sept. 15.

WATCH: Exclusive interviews with three Firestone Indy Lights drivers

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from outside the garage area at the Auto Club Speedway. Fifteen Firestone Indy Lights drivers participated in a testing session at the race track in Fontana, Calif. In this video, watch for exclusive interviews with drivers Esteban Guerrieri (No. 11 Indy Lights car); Juan Pablo Garcia (No. 76 Indy Lights car); and Sebastian Saavedra (No. 27 Indy Lights car). Guerrieri and Saavedra finished 1-2 in last Sunday's Firestone Indy Lights race on the Streets of Long Beach. Look for them to return to the Auto Club Speedway on September 15.

Franchitti and Dixon preview the IndyCar World Championships in Fontana, Calif. By Jason Rzucidlo

Chip Ganassi drivers Dario Franchitti (No. 10) and Scott Dixon (No. 9) made a special appearance at the Auto Club Speedway last Thursday to promote the IZOD IndyCar World Championships. They also met with some of the track's biggest fans, otherwise known as hard card members. The open-wheel racing series will return to southern California for its season-ending race on Sept. 15. "For us it's exciting to be back in this part of California," Dixon said in an exclusive interview. "It's been about seven years and I think this year with the new formula, DW12, and the new engine manufacturers, I think there's going to be 28 or 30 cars and a 500-mile race."

WATCH: Exclusive interviews with IndyCar's Dario Franchitti & Scott Dixon

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from the Discover IE Fan Zone at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. The IZOD IndyCar series will return to southern California for its season-ending race on Sept. 15. The 500 mile, 250-lap race will take place at night, under the lights. It marks the series' first return to the track since 2005. Chip Ganassi drivers Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon made a special appearance to promote the race and meet with some of the track's biggest fans, otherwise known as hard card members. In this video, watch for remarks from both drivers in an exclusive interview you'll see only on AmericaJR.com. What is their favorite part of being in SoCal? What can the fans expect to see? How about the possibility of IndyCar returning to MIS? Find out inside...

WATCH: Interviews with hard card members at the fan Q&A session

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from the Discover IE Fan Zone at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. The IZOD IndyCar series will return to southern California for its season-ending race on Sept. 15. The 500 mile, 250-lap race will take place at night, under the lights. It marks the series' first return to the track since 2005. Chip Ganassi drivers Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon made a special appearance to promote the race and meet with some of the track's biggest fans, otherwise known as hard card members. In this video, watch for remarks from race fans Delia Maggio of Rialto, Calif., Taylor Harwood of Chino, Calif., along with Nicole Phillips and Bailey Markussen from Corona, Calif.

WATCH: MAVTV introduced as title sponsor of the season-ending IZOD IndyCar Series race

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from the Discover IE Fan Zone at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. The IZOD IndyCar series will return to southern California for its season-ending race on Sept. 15. The 500 mile, 250-lap race will take place at night, under the lights. It marks the series' first return to the track since 2005. MAVTV is a new television network that calls itself "Movies, Action and Variety" and is based in Corona, Calif. In this video, watch for remarks from Auto Club Speedway President Gillian Zucker, Chip Ganassi drivers Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon, and MAVTV President Bob Patison.

Bring your ticket, purchase a ticket or make a donation and see today’s IndyCar stars prepare for MAVTV 500

The stars of the IZOD IndyCar Series will be out in full force, shaking down their cars at Auto Club Speedway on Wednesday, Sept. 12 in preparation for the MAVTV 500 INDYCAR World Championships on Saturday, Sept. 15 under the lights. The test is open to the public from 5 pm – 8 pm with viewing from the East end of the open-air Terrace Suites above Pit Road. The garage area and Pit Road will not be accessible during the test.

Unique Nationwide Fad to Add Color to 'Color Me Rad 5k' IndyCar weekend

Fitness, fun and a myriad of colors are set to collide at Auto Club Speedway as the Speedway’s 5K will become the pallet for the newest fad sweeping the nation – Color Me Rad. On Saturday, Sept. 15, thousands of eager participants will descend upon Auto Club Speedway for “The Color Me Rad 5K” – a new sensation spreading bright colors across the country and making each event participant a walking “work of art”.

Star of "The Office" and LML Recording Artist to sing National Anthem at MAVTV 500

Melora Hardin, most recognized for her portrayal of ‘Jan Levinson,’ Steve Carell’s rigid former-corporate boss and love interest, on the hit NBC series, “The Office,” and LML Music recording artist will perform the National Anthem prior to the MAVTV 500 INDYCAR World Championships race at Auto Club Speedway on Saturday, Sept. 15. Hardin has three albums to her credit, the latest “All The Way To Mars” featuring songs from Broadway, standards, pop, and a few that she wrote herself.

MAVTV 500: Title contenders to start mid-pack, further back

One by one IZOD IndyCar Series drivers put separation between championship front-runner Will Power and Ryan Hunter-Reay during qualifications for the MAVTV 500 INDYCAR World Championships at Auto Club Speedway. In a nutshell, Hunter-Reay, whose No. 28 Team DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda car was the second of 25 qualifiers on the scorching (141 degrees track temp) 2-mile oval, will have his work cut out for him in the 250-lap race Sept. 15 to claim the series title.

PHOTOS: MAVTV 500 Pre-Race Ceremony, Race and Victory Lane

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo was LIVE at the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. for the IZOD IndyCar series MAVTV 500 race on Saturday, September 15, 2012. Look for photos of the pre-race ceremonies, driver introductions, the race itself, cars in the pit lane, cars in the garage, victory lane celebrations and the press conference thereafter. You'll see Ed Carpenter as he talks about his big victory and Ryan Hunter-Reay as he talks about winning the IndyCar championship.

WATCH: ACS Foundation 100 Winner Carlos Munoz, 3rd Place Finisher Esteban Guerrieri, Indy Lights Champion Tristan Vautier & His Team Owner Sam Schmidt

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from the infield of the Auto Club Speedway on Saturday afternoon. The season-ending Firestone Indy Lights race, the Auto Club Speedway Foundation 100, took place on the 2-mile oval. The race began at 4:30 p.m. and lasted for a little over 37 minutes. Pole winner Sebastian Saavedra finished last after having a mechanical problem on the first lap. The top three finishers were Carlos Munoz, David Ostrella and Esteban Guerrieri. Tristan Vautier, who finished fourth, won the Firestone Indy Lights championship for 2012. In this video, watch for remarks from Munoz, Guerrieri, Vautier and his team owner, Sam Schmidt.

Hunter-Reay clinches first IndyCar championship; Carpenter wins MAVTV 500 By Jason Rzucidlo

Ed Carpenter won Saturday's season-ending MAVTV 500 IZOD IndyCar series race at Auto Club Speedway on Saturday under the lights. But the big story of the day was Ryan Hunter-Reay's first IndyCar championship title. It was all about the U.S.A. The American-born driver won the title for an American manufacturer. It was the first series title for Chevrolet since 2002. Earlier in the day, Carlos Munoz took the checkered flag in the final Firestone Indy Lights race of the year, the Auto Club Speedway Foundation 100. [9.17.12]

WATCH: Post-race press conference with MAVTV 500 Winner Ed Carpenter

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from the infield of the Auto Club Speedway on Saturday afternoon. The season-ending IZOD IndyCar series race, the MAVTV 500, took place on the 2-mile oval. The race began at about 6 p.m. and lasted for almost three hours. Pole winner Marco Andretti finished in eighth. Will Power, the points leader at the start of the race, crashed on lap 66. Ed Carpenter passed Dario Franchitti on the final few laps to take home the checkered flag. In this video, watch for remarks from MAVTV 500 Winner Ed Carpenter. He is the team owner and driver and of the No. 20 Fuzzy's Vodka Chevrolet. Look for the answer for the question proposed by AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo at 4:25.

WATCH: 2012 IndyCar Champion Ryan Hunter-Reay addresses the media

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from the infield of the Auto Club Speedway on Saturday afternoon. The season-ending IZOD IndyCar series race, the MAVTV 500, took place on the 2-mile oval. The race began at about 6 p.m. and lasted for almost three hours. Will Power, the points leader at the start of the race, crashed on lap 66. Ryan Hunter-Reay only needed to finish the race above sixth position to win the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series championship title. He ended up passing the finish line in fourth. In this video, watch for remarks from IndyCar Champion Ryan-Hunter Reay. He is the driver of the No. 28 Team DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda Chevrolet. Look for the answer for the question proposed by AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo at 11:05.

WATCH: Post-race press conference with IndyCar Champion Team Owner Michael Andretti

AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo reports from the infield of the Auto Club Speedway on Saturday afternoon. The season-ending IZOD IndyCar series race, the MAVTV 500, took place on the 2-mile oval. The race began at about 6 p.m. and lasted for almost three hours. Will Power, the points leader at the start of the race, crashed on lap 66. Ryan Hunter-Reay only needed to finish the race above sixth position to win the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series championship title. He ended up passing the finish line in fourth. In this video, watch for remarks from IndyCar Champion Team Owner Michael Andretti. He is the team owner for Ryan Hunter-Reay. Look for the answer for the question proposed by AmericaJR.com's Jason Rzucidlo at 13:25.

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