Saturday, May 12, 2012

Road America

John Marine | 5/12/2012 11:14:00 AM | |
Road America has long been a track I think of as a Grand Prix-style course. Based in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, USA; this 14-turn, 4.048-mile (6.515-kilometer) race course has hosted racing since its opening in 1955. High speeds and technical corners make it an exceptional challenge. Road America is one of the longest race tracks in America. Today, it is second-longest only to Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah, USA. This blog post is another in my "Race Tracks" series of posts regarding race tracks. Welcome to my post regarding the Midwestern racing challenge known as Road America.

--- Road America ---

Here is a look at Road America:

Road America
^ from: - Road America is a very long course with several technical corners.

The Badger State's most difficult challenge lies in Road America. It hosts a variety of racing events ranging from cars to motorcycles. One of the premier events held at Road America include the Road America 500 run by the American Le Mans Series. There used to be races held on the roads of Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, USA prior to races being held at Road America. It also has played host to various motorcycle races as well as even being host to the SCCA Runoffs. I personally feel this track would be a great Grand Prix-style course. If Road America were to be upgraded to maybe host Formula 1 or FIA GT or something (fancy garages connected to pit road and fancy grandstands), it would very much be a fabulous facility to host international-level racing. It already is a lovely place for racing as it is. Maybe the most memorable moment to me watching races at Road America on TV was in 2001 with Trans-Am. As many as 12 cars slid off the race track as heavy rain was pouring from the skies late! The race was later red flagged and called official. Sadly, Road America is also infamously known as the place where Katherine Legge suffered a serious crash in a Champ Car race. For all of you gamers, its challenge can be experienced virtually in a number of games. Among others: IndyCar Racing 2, ToCA Race Driver 2, the Forza Motorsport series, the Shift games, and other different racing games.

Talking Points of Road America.

I've played Road America in a number of games. The first three odd-number corners (Turns 1, 3, and 5) are all very tricky, especially Turn 5. You gain so much speed between Turn 3 and Turn 5, even through the kink at Turn 4. It can be very easy to overshoot Turn 5 and end up having to recover seriously. The most critical corners to me are Turns 1, 5, 8, 12 (Canada Corner), and Turn 14.

Between Turns 10 and 11 is a kink for motorcycle racing events.

Video Lap.

What does four miles of racing look like? This video will give you a nice indication of Road America and the challenge it provides:

^ "Lap of Road America with Patrick Long"

Lap Records.

(Lap record is as current as this post's initial date) The all-time lap record around Road America was set by Dario Franchitti in 2000. He took his (then) CART Champ Car to run a 1:39.866 around Road America. The fastest a motorcycle has gone around Road America (or one of them) was 2:11.913, set by Josh Hayes in 2011. To see more lap times and get more info on Road America, check out Road America's page on Trackpedia.

There's your look at Road America. To learn more about this fine racing facility, please visit Thank you for reading! You take care and have a great day/night.

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