COVID blows off course NTT IndyCar Series

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With the United States still caught in the vicious vortex of COVID-19, the sporting events calendar has gone for a toss.

‘SportBusiness’ has informed that the NTT IndyCar Series has pushed back the start of its 2021 season by five weeks, with the original season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg (Florida, US) put off until April 25th, 2021.

The IndyCar Series, currently known as the NTT IndyCar Series under sponsorship, is the premier level of open-wheel racing in North America.

Fingers are crossed that the street course race in St. Petersburg, Florida, which had been scheduled for March 7th, will stand a greater chance of allowing spectators though COVID-19 continues to clobber the United States.

‘SportBusiness’ further informed that IndyCar’s season opener is now scheduled to be held at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama (US), on April 11th.

‘SportBusiness’ quoted Mark Miles, Penske Entertainment Corp. President and Chief Executive as stating, “It’s not surprising that an event of this magnitude, scheduled for the first week of March, is still subject to the implications of the pandemic. We’re delighted we were able to work with St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman’s administration and Green Savoree Racing Promotions to find a more suitable date, which helps consolidate the beginning of our schedule and allows us to stay on NBC network television.”

In December 2020, IndyCar announced the Long Beach Grand Prix would be moved from April 18th to September 26th as its new final race of the year. The NTT IndyCar Series will feature a record nine races on the NBC broadcast network in 2021.

‘SportBusiness’ informed that in 2020, the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg closed out the IndyCar season in October, having been rescheduled from March due to the coronavirus curse.

The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg is an IndyCar Series race held in St. Petersburg. The race takes place on a temporary course, utilizing downtown streets, and one runway of Albert Whitted Airport. The event dates back to 1985, with IndyCars first competing in 2003.

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