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Toyota Grand Prix Track Construction Now Under Way

The event, scheduled for April 11-13, is expected to draw some 200,000 spectators.

The Toyota Grand Prix in Long Beach, 2013. Patch photo by John Schrieber.
The Toyota Grand Prix in Long Beach, 2013. Patch photo by John Schrieber.

Construction got underway today on the 1.97-mile temporary track for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, which begins 60 days from now.

The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, now in its 40th year, is expected to draw nearly 200,000 spectators over April 11-13.

The construction of the temporary track is expected to take 60 days and will include 1,400 concrete blocks that will form the temporary racetrack, debris fencing, grandstand seating, power, telephone lines and amenities.

“What that does is it encompasses this whole area downtown and creates an attractive venue to come watch the race,” said Jim Michaelian, CEO of the Toyota Grand Prix Association of Long Beach.

“What we do is we build a circuit that is safe for the competitors and for the fans that come, and will afford the racers the chance to compete on our two-mile circuit here,” Michaelian told Video News West.

Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster joined Michaelian to mark the start of construction. The original 1975 Toyota Celica pace car, along with a current Toyota Camry pace car and the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Indy show car, were on display.

The April event will feature the IndyCar Series, Pro/Celebrity Race, TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Pirelli World Challenge, Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, SPEED Energy Stadium SUPER Trucks and the Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge on Friday and Saturday nights.

--City News Service

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