Tony Stewart was going to compete in the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but that will not happen.
Before the 2020 NASCAR season was halted due to the coronavirus pandemic in March, three-time Cup Series champion Tony Stewart announced that he was planning to compete in the Xfinity Series race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
Stewart, who co-owns Cup Series team and Xfinity Series team Stewart-Haas Racing, was set to drive a Ford alongside full-time driver Chase Briscoe in the Pennzoil 150 at the 13-turn, 2.439-mile (3.925-kilometer) road course in Speedway, Indiana on Saturday, July 4.
Then the pandemic hit, causing multiple changes to the complexion of the season.
Fortunately, however, one race that was not affected date-wise was this race, the first ever Xfinity Series race on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
But Stewart’s plans have changed, and he will now not be competing in this event.
Stewart has not competed in NASCAR since he retired from full-time competition after the 2016 Cup Series season. He has not competed in the Xfinity Series since he won the 2013 season opener at Daytona International Speedway.
One of the reasons why Stewart had planned to return to racing for this particular event was because of the fans, as the 49-year-old hails from Columbus, Indiana.
However, fans will not be permitted at the Brickyard during this race weekend as track owner and IndyCar owner Roger Penske prepares to safely welcome fans to the venue’s four-turn, 2.5-mile (4.023-kilometer) oval for the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 in some capacity on Sunday, August 23.
The Xfinity Series race at the track’s road course is scheduled to take place just after an IndyCar race at the same track, the second race of the recently started season. The Cup Series is scheduled to run the traditional Brickyard 400 on the oval the following afternoon.
Before traveling to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, the Xfinity Series is set to run races at Homestead-Miami Speedway, Talladega Superspeedway and Pocono Raceway over the next three weekends. Homestead-Miami Speedway is scheduled to host a doubleheader this weekend while the other two venues are both scheduled to host one race.