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Long Beach Grand Prix part of busy racing weekend

April 10, 2012|By Jim Peltz
  • Defending IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti will be one to watch on the streets of Long Beach this weekend.
Defending IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti will be one to watch… (Kevin C. Cox / Getty Images )

After an idle Easter weekend, motor racing around the world gets back into gear this weekend from Long Beach to Shanghai.

The Izod IndyCar Series returns to Southern California for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday, which is run on 1.97 miles of the city's seaside streets.

The series' drivers include reigning series champion Dario Franchitti, three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves, former Formula One driver Rubens Barrichello and defending Long Beach winner Mike Conway.

NASCAR, meanwhile, heads to Fort Worth for Saturday night's Sprint Cup Series race at the 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway.

Greg Biffle sits atop the Cup standings with a six-point lead over Dale Earnhardt Jr. Four drivers are tied for third, 12 points behind Biffle: Tony Stewart, Matt Kenseth, Kevin Harvick andMartin Truex Jr.

Drag racing holds its unique four-wide event at zMAX Dragway in Concord, N.C., near Charlotte, in which the National Hot Rod Assn.'s Full Throttle Series cars race down the drag strip four abreast instead of in pairs.

And Formula One heads to the Shanghai International Circuit for the Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday. Lewis Hamilton of McLaren Mercedes, who is currently five points behind Ferrari's Fernando Alonso in the championship standings, won the China race last year.

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Long Beach Grand Prix part of busy racing weekend

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