Indy 500 sponsors postpone ‘greatest spectacle in racing’ until August

Top Stories
IndyCar Indy 500 Auto Racing_1558461684930

Takuma Sato, of Japan, leads a group of cars into turn one during practice for the Indianapolis 500 IndyCar auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Monday, May 20, 2019, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

INDIANAPOLIS, Indiana (KETK) – The Indianapolis 500 Presented by Gainbridge has been rescheduled for Sunday, August 23 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, officials from INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) announced today.

The 104th edition of “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” will air live on NBC, with the official green flag time to be announced at a later date.

The GMR Grand Prix will transition to Saturday, July 4, on the IMS road course as part of a historic double-header featuring the NTT INDYCAR SERIES and NASCAR. This first-of-its-kind racing event also will be televised by NBC on Independence Day.

The Indianapolis 500 was originally scheduled for Sunday, May 24, in its traditional spot on the calendar during Memorial Day weekend. The GMR Grand Prix was scheduled to be run on Saturday, May 9.

“The Month of May at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is my favorite time of year, and like our fans, I am disappointed that we have had to reschedule the Indianapolis 500,” Roger Penske said. “However, the health and safety of our event participants and spectators is our top priority, and we believe that postponing the event is the responsible decision with the conditions and restrictions we are facing. We will continue to focus on ways we can enhance the customer experience in the months ahead, and I’m confident we will welcome fans with a transformed facility and a global spectacle when we run the world’s greatest race.”

“Memorial Day weekend has always provided Indianapolis 500 fans an opportunity to honor the men and women who have fought and sacrificed for our nation’s freedom,” Penske Entertainment Corp. President and CEO Mark Miles said. “This August, we’ll also have a unique and powerful opportunity to honor the contributions and heroism of the doctors, nurses, first responders and National Guard members serving on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19. We’re grateful for the patience of our fans as we’ve navigated this situation, and we extend our thanks to NBC for its terrific partnership and diligent work to maximize broadcast coverage with this new schedule.”

On-track action in August will begin at IMS with practice sessions on Wednesday and Thursday, August 12-13, followed by Fast Friday on Aug. 14 and Indianapolis 500 Qualifications on Saturday and Sunday August 15-16. Each day of qualifications will be televised on NBC, providing more network coverage of qualifications for fans than in 2019. A full broadcast schedule will be released soon.

The following week’s schedule will begin with hot pit-stop practice sessions on Thursday, Aug. 20 and include Indy Lights practice and qualifying. The Indy Lights Freedom 100 race, a significantly expanded Indy 500 Pit Stop Challenge and final Indianapolis 500 practice will take place on Friday, August 21 as part of Miller Lite Carb Day, followed by the public drivers’ meeting and full-field autograph session on Saturday, August 22 as part of Legends Day presented by Firestone.

As a result of the schedule changes at IMS, the INDYCAR races scheduled for Aug. 16 and August 22 have been rescheduled. The Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio is now scheduled for August 9, and the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway is now scheduled for August 30.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Right Now

Don't Miss

KETK Twitter & Facebook

Community Calendar

Trending Stories