This weekend at Long Beach, Dragon Racing will make their first appearance of the season, and it will also mark the return of one of open wheel's most famous drivers, Paul Tracy.
In a statement today, Jay Penske announced the formation of Dragon Racing, a new team created to compete in the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series.
Dragon Racing will begin their 2011 season at the Long Beach Grand Prix this weekend, and veteran Paul Tracy will be the driver for their No. 8 car (pictured). There are a total of five races planned with Tracy during in the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series season, including Long Beach, Texas, Toronto, Edmonton and Sonoma.
The team will also have an entry in the Indianapolis 500, with a driver to be named later. Paul Tracy has a prior commitment with Dreyer and Reinbold Racing for the 500.
Tracy, now in his 21st season of Indy car racing, has compiled an impressive career. He is in the top 10 in almost every statistical category, including wins, poles and laps led. Tracy earned 75 career podium finishes, 102 top-five finishes and captured the Champ Car World Series championship in 2003. He has won here at Long Beach four times and has one pole.
Ralphs Grocery will join Dragon Racing as the primary sponsor for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach in a retailer partnership that includes support from PepsiCo, FritoLay, Berringer Wine and Rockstar Energy Drink. Motegi Racing and Wheel Pros also will provide sponsorship support.
When discussing his future plans, Tracy said that he will compete in a limited schedule this season and make 2012 his "farewell season."
In 2010, Tracy raced in five events with a best finish of sixth place coming at Edmonton, where he started 15th. He was with KV Racing Technology at the time.