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06/21 2018

Report: IMS To Host USAC Event In September

By:  SPEED SPORT Staff

Indianapolis Motor Speedway is expected to announce a USAC P1 Insurance National Midget Series event will be held on the speedway grounds in September. The track previously built a temporary dirt track in 2016 as a retirement gift for Tony Stewart. (IMS Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS — According to a report by veteran motorsports writer Robin Miller on Racer.com, USAC racing could be coming to Indianapolis Motor Speedway as soon as this September.

The event, which would likely feature the P1 Insurance National Midget Series, would be run during Brickyard 400 weekend at the massive 2.5-mile track as the annual NASCAR event at the speedway moves from its traditional late-July date to Sept. 9.

The plan would call for a quarter-mile dirt track to be constructed inside of turn three, including seating for at least 5,000. The event would also be designed to help strengthen the bond between short-track fans and the speedway.

“For the last several years we haven’t had a direct connection to short tracks and this certainly gives short track fans a reason to come to the Speedway,” IMS president Doug Boles told RACER. “We’ve got to make the Brickyard more than stock cars at the moment and we think this is something people will enjoy.”

According to Miller, Boles has hired Kokomo Speedway promoter Reece O’Connor to design and prepare the quarter-mile track.

“Reece knows his stuff and he thinks he’s found some good clay which is great,” Boles told RACER. “But I want to clarify that this is a one-time deal. We have no interest in making this a weekly race track.”

Such an event would fall during a seven-week break in the USAC midget schedule and would draw from the popularity of NASCAR drivers with open-wheel racing backgrounds, including Kyle Larson, Christopher Bell, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and Tanner Thorson — all of whom have competed in midgets this year.

IMS built a temporary dirt track in 2016 for exhibition runs as part of honoring three-time NASCAR champion Tony Stewart upon his retirement from Cup Series competition.