INDIANAPOLIS — If you’ve wanted to go to the Indianapolis 500 this May, good news is you can. After the 104th Running was delayed until Aug. 23 and eventually run behind closed doors, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway announced on Wednesday that they can hold a capacity of 40% on May 30. That’s approx. 135k, which would be the largest single day crowd in this COVID era.
While that can maybe scare some off, the good news is, IMS is a very, very, very large facility. You can easily fit 135k in there and not have to literally come across 135k people.
IMS is a campus of 935 acres. 244 of that includes the infield alone. You can fit Vatican City, Churchill Downs, Wimbledon (the entire facility), the Roman Coliseum, Yankee Stadium and the Rose Bowl all snuggled up inside of those 244 acres inside.
I Opted In For Tickets, Am I Good?
There will be more direction given on this soon. We know 175k tickets were originally sold already but none have been printed. Last Thursday, IMS sent an email to ticketholders giving them the option to go or not. The deadline to opt in or out has since closed. With 135k allowed in, Doug Boles said around 32k opted out with what he feels like will be a few more to come. Right now, IMS is at capacity.
When Will I Get My Tickets?
Month of May customers will receive an email notification once their 2021 tickets have been mailed. As a reminder, NO 2021 tickets have been delivered. All tickets delivered for Month of May events in 2020 will not be valid in 2021. Boles said tickets will start to get sent out next week or the week after.
What If I Didn’t Have Tickets But Now Want To Go?
Fans who do not currently have tickets and are interested in attending can apply online at ims.com. If additional tickets are available these fans will be given the first opportunity to purchase. Boles said that we’re essentially sold out as of now, but he expects some more fans to decline their tickets still this year which could open up more to become available to the general public.
What If I Don’t Want To Go?
Fans who do not currently have Indy 500 tickets and are interested in attending can apply online at ims.com. If additional tickets are available, these fans will be given first opportunity to finalize purchases.
IMS customers still have the option to roll their 2021 purchase into 2022, receiving an IMS event credit rather than attending this year’s race.
Will The Race Still Be Blacked Out Locally?
There’s not been a discussion yet on this but never say never.
Who Approved The Plan?
The plan for the Sunday, May 30 race at the world’s largest sporting facility was developed in close consultation with state and local health officials and has been approved by the Marion County Public Health Department.
What Safety Measures Will Be In Place?
- Face coverings will be required and enforced throughout the venue.
- Temperature checks will be administered upon public gate entry.
- There will be spacing between customer groups in the grandstands. In addition, spacing will be enforced throughout the venue.
- Spectator viewing mounds will be closed to the general public throughout the Month of May, with no Race Day General Admission tickets sold.
- Frequent cleaning and sanitation processes will be in place, with hand sanitizer and washing stations readily available.
Can I Use My Bronze or Silver Badge?
Yes. Please note that those with Bronze or Silver Badges must show proof of vaccination – at least one shot administered two weeks in advance — at the time of check-in.
If you have paid for a badge and wish to opt out for this year, you may do so by logging on to your IMS account or by calling 317-492-6500. Credentials for minors will not be utilized this year, and all purchases will be credited to accounts.
As a reminder, Bronze and Silver Badges are valid for gate admission and garage access May 14, May 18-23 and May 28. All individuals must be 18 years of age.
Due to time constraints and mailing delays, each individual must come to the IMS Credentials Office in May to pick up their badge. A valid photo ID and a vaccination card must be presented by each individual.
Can I Go To Practice/Qualifying?
Yes, tickets for all other on-track days remain available, and the same health precautions for gate entry and grandstand access will be in place. You just can’t drive into the track and will have to walk through the gates. Tower Terrace will be open for seating, so will Pagoda Plaza, but you’d just have to walk through one of the front stretch tunnels to get there.
Will There Be A Carb Day?
Yes, but there’s no other activity other than practice. All concerts are canceled. Carb Day will just consist of practice and that’s it. No Indy Lights race, no pit stop competition, no concerts.
Will There Be A Snake Pit?
No, all concerts have been canceled. Ticket holders can receive an IMS account credit for their purchases through their online IMS account or by contacting the ticket office.
Why Are There No Concerts?
That’s because you’re risking people coming in close contact with one another. While I get there’s a group of people that like to party at IMS, at the end of the day, IMS is a race track and they have to focus and cater to those that want to watch the cars go around the oval. By having any additional activities outside of on track action, there’s a risk that could spark an unnecessary outbreak and threaten fans attending on May 30, the most important day of the month. So, if you just leave the action to the track and the track only, then you eliminate the worry.
Can I Park Inside?
No infield public parking will be allowed in May. Customers with previously purchased infield parking passes should check their online IMS account for a replacement option. Fans can select the replacement location or take an IMS account credit for a future event. All fans with 2021 infield parking can renew their pass for 2022.
Will There Be Fans At The GMR Grand Prix?
Yes, tickets for all other on track days remain available. The same health precautions will be in place for all days IMS is open to the public during the Month of May. GMR Grand Prix Race Day tickets can be reserved now via an application on IMS.com(opens in a new window).
What They’re Saying About the 105th Running of the Indianapolis 500
Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb: “Roger Penske and everyone associated with Penske Entertainment and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway have been incredible partners with us throughout the pandemic. It is high time for fans to return to the greatest motor speedway in the world with this safety plan in place. We’re going to have a great Month of May, so let’s go racing.”
Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett: “Today’s announcement demonstrates our continued commitment to safely hosting major events and showcases the strong collaboration between the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and public health partners. We’re excited to have Race Day back in May, welcoming fans as we continue to promote vaccination for residents and visitors alike.”
State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box: “IMS has been thoughtful and thorough in its approach to ensuring the safety of fans, teams and all who will visit the Speedway during the Month of May. The organization’s commitment to getting thousands of Hoosiers vaccinated is helping us all with a return to normalcy. The state Department of Health is grateful for the efforts of IMS and its partners.”