IndyCar makes revisions, name change

Sports Network

, Last Updated: 5:55 PM ET

Indianapolis, IN - The IZOD IndyCar Series is making several changes for its 2011 season, including a name change for its sanctioning body.

Series officials unveiled a host of changes during the sport's annual state address held in Indianapolis on Tuesday.

The sanctioning body of the IZOD IndyCar Series, Firestone Indy Lights and Mazda Road to Indy will be changed from Indy Racing League to INDYCAR.

"As I was talking to fans and press through the course of last season, it was apparent that we needed to make a name change to reflect the history and heritage of our sport," INDYCAR chief executive officer Randy Bernard said.

A new sanctioning body logo to coincide with the name change was unveiled during the address.

Starting in 2012, the IndyCar will reduce specifications for all its engines from 2.4 liters to 2.2. Honda, Chevrolet and Lotus have committed to building engines for the future Indy car, and all automobile manufacturers are represented on the INDYCAR Engine Committee. The 2012 platform allows manufacturers to produce engines with a maximum of six cylinders.

The series revealed several competition rule changes for the upcoming season.

Double-wide restarts will be used on oval tracks, and the restart area will move closer to the start/finish line. The rule change followed input from team owners and drivers, as well as feedback from race fans. The revised format for restarts will begin with the May 29 Indianapolis 500, which is the first oval race of the season. The rule won't be applied to road/street course races because of the physical characteristics of each of those tracks.

"We're trying to increase the excitement and drama around the events," said Brian Barnhart, the president of competition and operations for the IZOD IndyCar Series. "Much of it is a response to fans' expectations."

Other rule changes for 2011 include the pit order for the field based on the qualifying performance from the previous race instead of entrant point standings, a new location for the pit commit line at each track and increased time for the first practice of a race.


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