Under normal circumstances, this weekend would have featured the 104th Indianapolis 500 on the iconic 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) oval. These are not normal times and the NTT IndyCar Series hasn’t turned a wheel in anger – yet.
The season starter is now June 6th’s Genesys 300 on the 1.5-mile high-banked Texas Motor Speedway. It’s a night race, but that’s the only thing it has in common with the 23 Texas races that preceded this one. There will be no fans on-site and only minimal media presence. Still, if NASCAR’s initial race at Darlington last Sunday is any indication, the fires that burn in drivers’ bellies will be sated and, hopefully sated safely.
That Texas night race will be INDYCAR’s only contest during the month of June, but July should be exciting for fans and busy for teams, as the series takes part in the GMR Indy Grand Prix on July 4th on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s road course, the first time NASCAR’s Cup Series and INDYCAR have shared a racetrack on the same weekend. A week later the INDYCAR teams take part in the REV Group Grand Prix doubleheader at the lengthy and loved Road America road course. A points-paying race will take place on both July 11-12 on the Elkhart Lake, Wisc. racetrack.
Iowa Speedway retains its date and adds a second contest, making the July 17-18 weekend the second doubleheader of the season. The first race will be at night; the second during the daytime. August will be another busy, busy month for the Indy cars as it begins with an August 9 date at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, then moves back to The Brickyard and Indianapolis 500 qualifying August 15-16 and then the Greatest Spectacle in Racing on August 23rd, as was previously announced.
A week later, the fifth and final oval race of the protracted season takes place on the World Wide Technology Raceway oval at Gateway, a stone’s throw from St. Louis, scheduled August 30. From there the Indy cars are westward bound, visiting Portland International Raceway on September 13th, enjoying a third doubleheader at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca on September 19-20, only to circle back to Indy on October 3rd for a second jaunt on the IMS road course.
The finale for the Indy cars takes place where the season intended to begin: on the streets of St Petersburg, scheduled for October 25th, one of the latest finales in recent history.
There were some further dates that had to be canceled this year: Barber Motorsports Park, the AcuraGrand Prix of Long Beach were already announced, along with the Indy Richmond 300 (initially scheduled for June 27 at Richmond Raceway’s oval) and the Honda Indy Toronto, intended to play out on the streets of Toronto on July 12. The latter two cancelations were due to local restrictions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic.