IMSA & NASCAR’s future plans at Indianapolis

Indy news and notes
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INDIANAPOLIS — Here’s a rundown of some IMSA and NASCAR news and notes from Indy.

IMSA returns to the Brickyard

INDIANAPOLIS – JULY29: (L to R) Leigh Diffey, NBC Sports, Doug Boles, track president of IMS, Roger Penske, John Doonan, president of IMSA and Sebastian Bourdais, IMSA competitor, pose in front of the IMSA Battle on the Bricks logo in the DEX Imaging Media Center, after Friday’s announcement of IMSA’s return to The Brickyard at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, on July 29, 2022, in Indianapolis. Photo: Joe Skibinski/Penske Entertainment

The Brickyard made the poorly kept IMSA secret official.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway track president, Doug Boles, announced, Friday, that the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship will return to The Brickyard in 2023. It’s the first time the series will run at Indianapolis since 2014.

“Indianapolis Motor Speedway is hallowed ground in the world of motorsport, and we are honored to bring IMSA and the WeatherTech Championship back to IMS,” IMSA president, John Doonan, said.

The IMSA “Battle on the Bricks” will take place on Sept. 17, 2023, and NBC will televise it. Furthermore, it’ll be a standalone weekend (not part of the NASCAR Cup Series weekend).

The 2023 race will be a two-hour, 40-minute event. Going forward, it’ll be a four-hour endurance race.

Boles added that bringing IMSA back to The Brickyard further enhances the track’s reputation as “the racing capital of the world.”

“IMSA features some of the most evocative manufacturers and machines in global motorsports, so a return to IMS is a perfect fit for our loyal fans,” he said. “We can’t wait to see exciting new GTP prototypes compete on the road course in yet another full weekend of action at the Speedway, complete with great racing in other classes and the Michelin Pilot Challenge.”

Cup Series remains on road course

Don’t expect the NASCAR Cup Series to return to the oval, anytime soon.

Boles said in the aforementioned IMSA press conference that at this time, Indy is “committed to the road course.”

“The racing’s been fantastic, and I think we’ll see that, again, this weekend,” he said. “Our fans have really enjoyed it. Our ticket sales are really strong, this weekend. So it’s doing what it’s supposed to do.”

The change to the road course was done to put life back into the NASCAR weekend at The Brickyard. Which after 26 years, saw sharp declines in attendance, thanks to lackluster racing.

“We’re excited with the way it raced in 2020, when we just did XFINITY (Series) and the NTT IndyCar Series and then last year, when we had all three of them together. We’re excited about this year.”

After 2023, however, that could change.

TOP IMAGE: Joe Skibinski/Penske Entertainment