I am reaching out to share an update on NASCAR’s Pennzoil 150 and Big Machine Hand Sanitizer 400 Powered by Big Machine Records, as well as INDYCAR’s GMR Grand Prix, scheduled for July 4th weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
After extensive consultation with local and state health officials, we have made the difficult decision to run these events without fans in the stands due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of this decision, we have also canceled the Driven2SaveLives BC39 USAC Midget race and the FGL Fest concert.
While the State of Indiana plans to enter Stage 5 of its “Back on Track Indiana” plan on July 4, opening sporting events to fans with social distancing, Marion County – home to IMS – moved to Stage 3 ten days after the rest of the state, and we cannot be confident that it will be ready to move to Stage 5 by the holiday weekend. This approach follows national trends for larger communities, and we must follow those guidelines and the leadership and judgement of our city and state officials during this challenging time.
Customers with tickets to the impacted events will receive an email from the IMS ticket office with instructions for claiming tickets to our 2021 events, an account credit good for all future events at IMS, or a refund.
You – our fans – are what make this place so special, and we will greatly miss welcoming you next month for this historic NASCAR-INDYCAR double-header weekend. We are, however, excited that all three races will be broadcast on NBC and hope you will tune in throughout the holiday weekend.
You’ll also notice that this year’s edition of our marquee NASCAR race has a new name –the Big Machine Hand Sanitizer 400 Powered by Big Machine Records. This new name is a reflection of our title sponsor’s commitment to support front-line workers and make hand sanitizer available to the public in response to the COVID-19 crisis.
We look forward to welcoming fans to the track in August for the 104th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge and the other events related to the race beginning with practice on Wednesday, August 12, and qualifying the weekend of August 15 & 16. And on Oct. 3, the NTT INDYCAR Series will return again to IMS for the INDYCAR Harvest GP. Thanks to the many investments and improvements underway at IMS, the facility has never looked better, and we can’t wait to share it with you later this year.
Thank you again for your patience and support, and we hope you and your loved ones continue to stay safe and healthy this summer.
J. Douglas Boles, IMS President