No Fans For IndyCar’s Opener In Texas On June 6

There will be no fans in the stands when the NTT IndyCar Series begins its season on June 6 at Texas Motor Speedway. (IndyCar Photo)
There will be no fans in the stands when the NTT IndyCar Series begins its season on June 6 at Texas Motor Speedway. (IndyCar Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS – The NTT IndyCar Series season will begin on June 6 at Texas Motor Speedway without fans in the stands as the world continues to battle the COVID-19 virus.

The race, known as the Genesys 300, will begin at 8:45 p.m. ET with NBCSN broadcasting the event live. The event will feature a condensed schedule, with practice, qualifying and the race taking place on the same day at the 1.5-mile oval.

To accommodate the one-day schedule, the length for the race has been adjusted to 200 laps rather than the previously announced 248 laps.

“We’re excited and ready to kick off the NTT IndyCar Series season at Texas Motor Speedway,” INDYCAR President Jay Frye said. “We’ve worked closely with Eddie Gossage, the entire TMS team and public health officials on a plan of action that will ensure the safety of our event participants alongside an exciting return to competition for our drivers, teams and viewers tuning in from around the world.”

“America needs live sports and they are not going to believe what they see when the Genesys 300 storms into their living rooms on TV from Texas,” said Eddie Gossage, president and general manager of Texas Motor Speedway. “One of the world’s greatest sporting events, the Indy 500, has been postponed until August by coronavirus, so all of that pent-up energy, anticipation, frustrations and anxiety will be pounding through the drivers’ nervous systems. Typically, the Genesys 300 results in a 220-mph photo finish.”

Other steps to protect the well-being of participants have been identified through close consultation with Texas Motor Speedway and public health officials. These include:

• Strict access guidelines limiting the number of personnel on site

• A health screening system administered to all participants

• PPE equipment provided to everyone entering the facility, along with guidelines on usage

• Social distancing protocols in place and carefully maintained

• Revised competition layout to increase distancing

Practice for the Genesys 300 will run from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. ET, followed by qualifying at 5 p.m. and the race at 8:45 p.m.

The remainder of the updated, 15-race IndyCar calendar, which was announced April 6, remains on schedule for competition.

The NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoors Truck Series 400, originally scheduled for June 5, remains postponed with a revised date for later in the season to be announced in the future.