Long Beach

INDYCAR, Sports Cars and More. What You'll See at the 2023 Grand Prix of Long Beach

Six series, including IMSA and INDYCAR, will be on track during the three-day Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend April 14-16. Here's your guide to each and when to watch.

INDYCAR and IMSA will be part of the 2023 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Six different racing series featuring an array of purpose-built racers, highly modified production cars, high-flying trucks and historic Formula 1 cars will be on track at this year's Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Three days of motorsports on the street course begin Friday with practice sessions and a qualifying event before shifting into high gear Saturday and Sunday.

Here are the six different types of series featured at the 2023 Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Arrow McLaren SP driver Pato O'Ward (5) of Mexico enters Turn 1.
Arrow McLaren SP driver Pato O'Ward (5) of Mexico enters Turn 1 during the NTT INDYCAR Series PPG 375 on April 2, 2023 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, TX. (Photo by George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)


These open-wheel cars -- the same you'll see May 28 in the Indianapolis 500 -- compete in Sunday's feature race. Raced on banked oval tracks, road and street courses, the versatile cars will reach top speeds around 185 mph in front of the grandstands on Shoreline Drive. Last year's winner Josef Newgarden completed the 85-lap race in 1 hour, 46 minutes with an average speed of 93.977 mph, outdueling Romain Grosjean and Alex Palou.

The 2022 race included 14 laps under the yellow caution flag, which is often a factor on the tight, barrier-lined streets of Long Beach. Other drivers to watch include six-time series champ Scott Dixon and past Long Beach winners Alexander Rossi, Colton Herta and Pato O'Ward.

When to Watch: A thrilling knockout-style qualifying session starts Saturday at 12:05 p.m. before Sunday race day. The green flag drops at 12:45 p.m.

Broadcast/Streaming Schedule: Click here.

Two Team RLL BMW M Hybrid V8s compete in the IMSA GTP class at Daytona. (Photo by Andrew Bershaw/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship

One of the world's most exciting and competitive sports car racing series features Saturday in a 100-minute shootout. You're actually watching three races at the same time -- one battle among prototype race cars and another two production car classes. The teams are coming off the season opening 24 Hours of Daytona and the storied 12 Hours of Sebring, so this will be a hard-fought sprint race with the winner largely determined by who can stay out of trouble on the 1.9-mile street course.

There is heightened excitement around the series with this year's introduction of the GTP prototypes, expanding the number of competitors and manufacturers in top class. The GTP class features  hybrid-electrified entries from Acura, Cadillac, BMW and Porsche. Here's this year's entry list, which includes eight GTP cars, five GTD Pro cars and 15 GTD entries.

When to Watch: A 45-minute qualifying session is scheduled for 5:10 p.m. Friday before the race at 2 p.m. Saturday.

Broadcast/Streaming Schedule: Click here.

Formula Drift driver Simen Olsen drives at the 2022 Acura Grand Prix Of Long Beach Media Day on March 29, 2022.
Formula Drift driver Simen Olsen drives at the 2022 Acura Grand Prix Of Long Beach Media Day on March 29, 2022 in Long Beach, California. (Photo by Greg Doherty/Getty Images)

Super Drift Challenge

The Super Drift Challenge is a tire-smoking fan favorite in which drivers slide through turns. Judges watch for a driver's line on the course, angle in the turns and and style. A trailing car's proximity to the lead car also is a factor in the tandem competition.

When to Watch: Friday and Saturday nights, 6:30 p.m.

Broadcast/Streaming Schedule: Click here.

Stadium Super Truck drivers Zoey Edenholm, Max Gordon, Robert Stout and Davey Hamilton Jr. all go airborne.
Stadium Super Truck drivers Zoey Edenholm, Max Gordon, Robert Stout and Davey Hamilton Jr. all go airborne off a jump on Pine Avenue during the SST race at the 47th annual Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach on Saturday, April 9, 2022. (Photo by Will Lester/MediaNews Group/Inland Valley Daily Bulletin via Getty Images)

SPEED/UTV Stadium SUPER Trucks

Stadium SUPER Trucks literally fly down Shoreline Driver. The powerful trucks provide some of the weekend's best entertainment, soaring off ramps as they compete side-by-side.

When to Watch: 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, 3:30 p.m. on Sunday

Broadcast/Streaming Schedule: Click here.

Thomas Collingwood from BGB Motorsports team on the race during the GT3 Carrera Cup North America on July 15-17, 2022 at Honda Indy in Toronto's Exhibition Place (Photo by Anatoliy Cherkasov/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Porsche Carrera Cup North America

The Porsche-only field competes in two 40-minute races. Drivers in more than 30 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race cars with a distinctive engine note will scrap it out.

When to Watch: A 30-minute qualifying is scheduled for Friday at 4:30 p.m. Race 1 is Saturday at 5:15 p.m. Race 2 is Sunday at 4:20 p.m., the final event of the weekend.

Broadcast/Streaming Schedule: Click here.

The start of inaugural Formula 1 Grand Prix West on March 26, 1976 in Long Beach.
The start of inaugural Formula 1 Grand Prix West on March 26, 1976 in Long Beach, California. The #2 Ferrari of Clay Regazzoni (race winner) leads the #4 Tyrell-Ford of Patrick Depailler into the first turn. (Photo by Alvis Upitis/Getty Images)

Historic Formula 1 Challenge

The spine-tingling sounds of 1970s- and 1980s-era Formula 1 cars return to the concrete canyons of Long Beach's street course. Two 20-minute races will feature a field of F1 cars from the early days of the Grand Prix of Long Beach. F1 and some of the top names in the business -- Mario Andretti, Niki Lauda, Gilles Villeneuve and more -- competed in Long Beach from 1976 to 1983.

When to Watch: Practice sessions are scheduled for Friday and Saturday morning. Race 1 starts Saturday at 11:20 a.m. Sunday's Race 2 starts at 10:45 a.m.

Click here for the complete Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach event schedule.

About the Street Course in Long Beach

A lap doesn't take long in Long Beach. The course is only 1.968 miles with 11 turns. The fastest section is along Shoreline Drive and the start-finish line. Fans in the grandstands can watch cars reach their top speeds on the track and see what happens when pit lane gets busy.

From there, drivers brake hard into Turn 1, an overtaking opportunity before the dolphin fountain section and turns 2 and 3. After navigating turns 4 and 5, the track parallels a portion of Shoreline Drive -- an exciting viewing area on the dive down into Turn 6.

Drivers set up through here for the blast down Seaside Way and entry into another technical section of track that includes a sweeping left into the hairpin Turn 11. This last section of the track is another great place to watch.

Take a lap with Colton Herta during his blistering qualifying run last year.

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