SBD/June 15, 2011/Events and Attractions

Grand-Am May Run Alongside Brickyard 400 At IMS Beginning In '12

NASCAR will add Grand-Am to Brickyard 400 weekend starting in '12

The NASCAR owned and operated Grand-Am Rolex Series will run a three-hour endurance race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway the same weekend as the Sprint Cup Series Brickyard 400 beginning in ’12, according to Robin Miller of SPEEDTV.com. Ticket sales for July’s Brickyard 400 “are reportedly lagging behind” last year’s numbers, and NASCAR and IMS hope that the addition of Grand-Am “will infuse some spectator interest.” It is “not known whether Grand-Am will be held Friday or Saturday, but it would be the first time races were staged on the oval and road course at the same time.” Running at IMS likely will ensure the Grand-Am series “its largest audience -- especially if it runs on Saturday.” Miller reported “there also have been discussions about moving the Nationwide race from Lucas Oil Raceway to IMS on Saturday to run with Grand-Am and Brickyard qualifying” (SPEEDTV.com, 6/14). An IMS spokesperson yesterday confirmed talks to bring a race to the facility’s road course in ’12, but said that “no agreement is in place.” In Indianapolis, Curt Cavin writes the biggest obstacle is “converting the facility from a road course configuration, which would be used" for a Grand-Am race, to an oval for NASCAR on Saturday and Sunday. Grand-Am “would bring a title sponsor to cover the sanctioning fee estimated at $200,000” (INDIANAPOLIS STAR, 6/15).

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