Major revamp plan for ‘Cathedral of Speed’ on the way


Indianapolis Motor Speedway Image: tpsdave

The sports venue with the highest capacity in the world – Indianapolis Motor Speedway at Indiana (an enclave suburb of Indianapolis) in the United States – will be improvised with an ambitious plan announced.

In January this year, the American diversified transportation services company Penske Corporation completed its purchase of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the IndyCar series, which has now announced that the purse for the showpiece Indianapolis 500 will increase to $15m (£11.5m/€13.8m) for this year’s event.

As announced, fans will also get to savor once-in-a-lifetime experience with upgrades to facilities for spectators. The Brickyard boasts capacity of permanent seating for over 250,000 fans.

However, the Indy 500 which was scheduled to take place on May 24 this year and the Grand Prix which was scheduled for May 9 this year have all been canceled due to the coronavirus havoc. All concerts scheduled for the May race weekend have also been canceled.

The Indy 500 will now be held on August 23, 2020 and the Grand Prix will be held on July 4 this year.

Adding more than 30 large-screen video boards, including 24 along the paddock seating, will form the crux for the plans. The new paddock screens are set to deliver race action and information to an additional 25,000 fans.

All seven large in-field big-screen monitors at the venue will receive a running order addition, while the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Media Wall will also be presented. The Wall will comprise a video board measuring 100 feet wide by 20 feet tall and will be fitted at the base of the Pagoda, facing the Pagoda Plaza as part of plans to modify the gathering area, which will also provide data-driven insights to fans.

American telecommunications company Verizon will also use its 5G Ultra Wideband network to enable the speedway to enjoy technological edge.

IndyCar said the Indianapolis Motor Speedway will be the first motorsport facility with commercial 5G services that will boost both the consumer experience and track operations.

Elsewhere, more than 125 restrooms will be refurbished at the venue, while two new traffic lanes will seek to ease traffic snarls for guests on race days. Other improvements will include night light signage, fresh coat of paint and signage on concession stands, new picnic tables and new pavement at the Parcel B lot near the Indianapolis Motor Speedway main gate.

Stated Roger Penske, owner of Penske Corporation, “This is the racing capital of the world. It is at par with some of the most historic sporting institutions in this nation and across the globe, from Churchill Downs to Augusta National. Today, we’re announcing a meaningful investment in our fan experience that will produce rapid results. It’s part of a long-term plan to ensure the legendary status of the Speedway continues to grow and evolve for generations to come.”

The giant of industry Roger Penske refers to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as the Cathedral of Speed.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway

The sprawling, 110-year-old speedway, features spectacular races every year. First-time visitors are in awe of the venue when they visit it. Worldwide racing legends such as Michael Schumacher, Mika Hakkinen and Jenson Button walked onto the track in solemn reverence.

The revamp plans will also see the seating space improved, video boards will include more detail for the spectators, and new entry points will be created. Parking lots will be paved, restrooms will be renovated with new sinks, toilets and other amenities.

Penske’s team is pulling out all stops to make it even more magnificent – installing 15,000 linear feet — 3 miles — of new fencing around and throughout Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Victory Lane will include a podium that will rise above the ground so more spectators can see the winner’s celebration. Half of Georgetown Road (which runs behind the frontstretch) will become part of Indianapolis Motor Speedway property, allowing for wider and safer entries and concourse areas into the Speedway.

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