Ryan Briscoe lands Indy 500 drive with Ganassi

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Ryan Briscoe has become an instant contender to win the 2013 Indianapolis 500 this evening, as both SPEED.com’s Marshall Pruett and the Associated Press’ Jenna Fryer have confirmed that the former Team Penske pilot will drive for Target Chip Ganassi Racing at the Brickyard in May.

Briscoe won the pole position for last year’s “500,” but left Penske following the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season and was unable to land another ride in the series. However, the Australian has bounced back nicely in sports cars, earning a P2 class victory last month in the 12 Hours of Sebring.

He’s had varying degrees of success at the Brickyard in his career. He finished 10th in his first ‘500’ with Ganassi, for whom he drove for in the 2005 campaign (an abbreviated year due to injuries sustained in a horrific crash at Chicagoland Speedway). He would return to Indianapolis in 2007 and finish fifth for Luczo-Dragon Racing, but then could only muster a best finish of 15th (2009) across his next four 500s for Team Penske. However, he snapped his rough streak at Indy last year with another fifth-place finish.

During his five-year run with Roger Penske’s outfit, Briscoe notched seven victories and 26 podium finishes. Now he’ll be running alongside Dario Franchitti, Scott Dixon and Charlie Kimball as part of the team that belongs to The Captain’s greatest rival — and, furthermore, in the biggest race of them all.

IndyCar teams with NASCAR on IMS road course doubleheader in 2021

IndyCar NASCAR doubleheader 2021
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The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.

IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.

This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.

INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists

IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.

“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.

“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”

It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.