39th Annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach


stadium trucks


As if Saturday's ALMS action wasn't enough, Sunday not only had the Indy Lights, Indy and World Challenge race scheduled, but also Robby Gordon's Stadium Super Trucks!  These guys set up some mini jumps and showed the fans just what kind of abuse these trucks can take.  The trucks pack 600 horse power V8 engines and weigh just under 3,000 pounds.  


stadium super trucks
Once the trucks were done with their demos, the temporary jumps were broken down and it was time to get back to the business of racing.


The first race on Sunday would be the feeder series for Indycar, the Firestone Indy Lights.  These cars are actually more of open wheel racers than their big brothers in Indycar.  They actually have their wheels exposed, which means more chances for wrecks and spins from wheels touching.  Ten cars would start the race on Sunday and Carlos Munoz would be sitting in pole position.  The green flag dropped and before the cars got to turn 1, three cars had wrecked already.  Just like that the number 2 through 4 pole setters were out of the race and left a clear path for Carlos Munoz to the checkered flag.


Less than fifteen minutes later the remaining field of seven was reduced to five when Juan Pablo Garcia and Mikael Grenier spun and made contact.  It was definitely not a good day to be in an Indy Light!


indy lights, carlos munoz
Peter Dempsey was one of the three drivers taken out early in the race.  He was running well and had the times necessary to land him a podium spot if he had kept his nose clean. 


Rookie Gabby Chaves had qualified fifth, but thanks to the early carnage he was put in a position to challenge Munoz for the lead.  The #26 of Munoz was just too strong and Chaves had to settle for second, while his teammate Sage Karam was right behind him in third.


Carlos Munoz almost cruised to a first place finish.  Only 5 out of the 10 cars that started the race finished.  Munoz ended up with a commanding 30+ second lead on his closest opponent.  The win is Munoz's second consecutive flag-to-flag finish of the season.  Keep an eye out for this kid in the Indycar series soon.


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