INDIANAPOLIS — The Month of May in Indianapolis is going to look a lot different than in years past. For the first time since 1946, we won’t have an Indianapolis 500 to take place on Memorial Day weekend. In wake of the coronavirus outbreak, that race was moved on Thursday to Sunday, Aug. 23.
As a result of this too, the GMR Grand Prix won’t take place in the Month of May either. For the first time since the races’ inception in 2014, it will take place outside of the month as well. That race will be rescheduled for Saturday, July 4.
If that date sounds familiar in the racing world, especially for race fans in Indianapolis, you’re correct. The Pennzoil 150 NASCAR Xfinity Series race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is also scheduled for that day too. For the first time ever, we’re getting an IndyCar-NASCAR doubleheader on the same track on the same day.
With that being said, one name immediately pops up – Tony Stewart. Yes, the three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion, and owner of 49 victories in NASCAR’s premiere series, two of which being in the Brickyard 400, retired. But, he is also entered in the NXS race already too, making his first NASCAR start since Nov. 2016. He’s made 94 career NXS starts in totaling 11 wins in them. His last came in 2013 when he won at Daytona that year.
But, “Smoke” has also expressed interest in another Indy 500 try in the near future. Before his fame and fortune on the NASCAR side, he was an Indy Car driver first. Stewart, won the 1997 IRL championship to go along with three wins in 26 career starts. Why not run the IndyCar road course race on that Saturday then hop in an Xfinity car and race after?
If anyone can do it, it’s Stewart.
Some wondered if he’d run the Brickyard a day later as well. NASCAR rules prohibit teams from running more than four cars per organization. Stewart, is a co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing. They have four drivers already. Also, a team owner can’t race for another team either, essentially that dream ending, unless NASCAR makes an exception.
I’m looking at you NASCAR.
With the BC 39 races here that week too and Stewart being a former USAC Midget champion to go along with him racing Sprint Cars now too, why not run every race at IMS in July?
Of course, Jimmie Johnson has hinted at an Indy Car test, one that was scheduled for next month in Barber before being canceled due to the coronavirus, could run the IndyCar race on Saturday and Cup race (Brickyard 400) on Sunday.
What about Chip Ganassi Racing drivers or Team Penske drivers in either series running both races? The cars will all be here to do so.
All the rumors or hints of drivers racing both, well they all now are a reality.