The race schedule for the IZOD IndyCar Series gives new meaning to the phrase, springing into action. Later this spring, starting on Sunday of Memorial Day Weekend with the ‘Greatest Spectacle in Racing’, IndyCar will run four points races with the final event on Saturday night June 8 at Texas Motor Speedway.
Of course, there’s a small caveat to all this racing with the fact that one event will be two races during one weekend. Still, this brutal stretch of four races in 13 days will put a strain on every team and therefore may well decide the IndyCar championship.
Starts with a spectacle
Here’s what the rest of spring looks like on the IndyCar calendar. First off, the month of May is all about the Indianapolis 500, which is run on Sunday May 26, the day before Memorial Day. The prior two weeks will see teams hard at work practicing and qualifying for the legendary event. There are long preparations for the Indy 500 and the race itself is a compilation of planning, endurance and of course lots of money spent trying to stay out on the infamous track for 500 miles.
Double down in Detroit
With the Indy 500 in the rearview mirror, teams quickly have to ready for a fast turnaround with a 300 mile trip northeast to Detroit, Michigan, for not one but two races back-to-back on the streets of Belle Isle in the middle of the Detroit River, just a stone’s throw from Windsor, Ontario, Canada. Teams will need to prepare for a race on Saturday and then again on Sunday, with only six days between the Indy 500 and the Chevrolet Indy Dual in Detroit’s first race Saturday afternoon. With two street course events side-by-side, plenty of parts will have to be on hand and no telling how many front noses for the cars need to be available.
Finish in Texas
When the second of two races finishes late Sunday in Detroit, the IndyCar clan will pack up and head southwest to Texas Motor Speedway in Ft. Worth. Again, like Detroit, the teams won’t have much time because the Firestone 550 at Texas is a Saturday affair and they will have traveled nearly 1300 miles to get there. The good news is since most teams are based in Indianapolis, their home shops are right along the way from Michigan to Texas. By the way, ABC will be covering all the telecasts during this 13 day stretch.
There you have it – four races in 13 days. This exhausting part of the schedule doesn’t actually let up much afterwards as teams won’t get a weekend off until the end of June. After Texas, the teams head up to Milwaukee and then the following weekend, they race at Iowa. In four weeks time, that adds up to six races. It makes you tired just thinking about it.
There’s still talk that IndyCar may add another event this season; though, as time goes on, this becomes less likely. Just the same, this particular 13 day period will test all the team’s limits and those who manage to come through with good results just may be the points leaders when the season ends in October.
Drivers, start your engines … rental cars, haulers, jets and everything else it takes to get from one destination to the next.
Additional source: IndyCar