Dixon Wins 49th Acura Grand Prix While Fans Celebrate Another Successful Event
April 21, 2024

Confetti filled the air, champagne soaked the drivers’ suits in Victory Circle and the shore roared with a day-long celebration as the 49th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach reached its climax on Sunday.

Scott Dixon drove his No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda to victory in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES race. It was his second win here and 57th of his career. He held off 2021 winner Colton Herta while reigning series champion Alex Palou was third.

As is the Sunday tradition at Long Beach, the weather was ideal, a pleasant 75 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. The fans got pumped up early with the Historic Indy Car Challenge, won by Tim DeSilva in the 1995 Lola, and soaked up the unique atmosphere as much as the sunshine. 

There is something special about race day at the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach. You can see it in all the activities and the excitement on the fans’ faces, but you can feel it, too. You can sense the energy from the very beginning when vendors put out their goods for sale all the way to the event’s finish line after the checkered flag falls on the last race.

Many spectators began their day at the Korbel virtual victory circle soon after entering the facility. Others went straight into the Expo and the Family Fun Zone. They wandered behind the Shoreline Drive grandstands, along the promenade, stopped at food vendors or grabbed big Modelo beers. Those with paddock passes got up-close looks at the Indy cars with mechanics making final adjustments before the race. The dinging bell at the King Taco stand that signaled a customer’s order was ready provided a soundtrack to the area by the paddock entrance.

Then it was a race to the seats to catch the heart-pumping pre-race ceremonies that involved rockstar-style driver introductions, Grand Marshal Gabriel "Fluffy" Iglesias and the drivers taking a lap around the track in the back of pickup trucks, both of which had the fans on their feet and cheering. Even the fish in the Rainbow Harbor lagoon were jumping up to catch a glimpse of the excitement. 

After Dixon’s win, fans left their seats not to leave, but to get a ground-level view of the Stadium SUPER Trucks as the vehicles got airborne while jumping ramps along Shoreline Drive. They got an unexpected treat when a collision caused the fencing to need a repair, ending the race early and providing an up-close view of the Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA) scaling the fences to expertly do their job. Matt Brabham was declared the winner.

At the same time, a mariachi band entertained people in the Nocaut Tequila Club, proof that everywhere you went there was something to see and do at the Grand Prix. 

The day concluded with the GT America race, won by Jason Daskalos in the SRO3 class with Dan Knox in GT2 and Issac Sherman in GT4.

With that, the 49th Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach joined all the other events in the history books. Like its predecessors, it provided plenty of memorable moments and had people talking about coming back next year, which will be the 50th anniversary.