Rejoice. The racing world is back to normal. Sort of.
With the return of Formula 1 after the coronavirus pandemic on July 5, the Fourth of July weekend is the first weekend in 2020 that includes F1, NASCAR and IndyCar races. Not only are American race fans getting a three-day weekend, they get four major races to watch and five if you want to count the Saturday evening IMSA race at the Daytona road course.
Both Saturday and Sunday feature two races each. The IndyCar Series kicks things off at Noon ET on NBC at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. That race is followed on NBC by the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at the same track.
It’ll be the first time the Xfinity Series has raced on the IMS road course instead of the oval. The change was made because, well, the Xfinity races at the IMS oval had become really boring. After trying aero tricks to keep the cars closer together on the track, NASCAR and IMS just decided to make the switch to the road course. The simple presence of cars on the road course should make the race better by default.
F1 is in Austria on Sunday morning (9 a.m. ET, ESPN) for the first of two races in two weekends at the Red Bull Ring. The circuit’s schedule is set through the summer at tracks across Europe as the top motorsports series in the world tries to make up for the races it missed through the spring. F1 is racing on eight of 10 weekends through Sept. 6 with more races to come after that.
The Cup Series then caps the weekend off (4 p.m. ET, NBC) at the IMS oval. It’s the first time that the Cup Series has raced at Indianapolis over the July 4 weekend. The traditional Daytona race over the holiday weekend is now the final race of the regular season as NASCAR tries to keep whatever juice is left in the Brickyard 400.
Thanks to the pandemic, it’s also the first time that the IndyCar Series and NASCAR Cup Series are racing at the same facility on the same weekend.
It’s important to note that all of these races will happen without fans in attendance. While IMS says it’s still committed to trying to hold the Indianapolis 500 in August with 50 percent capacity, there won’t be any fans watching the weekend’s race in-person.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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