Charlie Kimball (pictured), Dario Franchitti, Josef Newgarden and Graham Rahal will be forced to suffer 10-spot grid penalties for the first race of the next IZOD IndyCar Series event — the Chevrolet Dual in Detroit doubleheader on June 1 — due to unapproved engine changes this weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Chip Ganassi Racing pilots Kimball and Franchitti swapped Hondas before yesterday’s Pole Day qualifying, while Newgarden (Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing) and Rahal (Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing) switched their own Hondas before this morning’s Bump Day activities. Newgarden and Rahal are currently the two fastest second-day qualifiers, with Newgarden at 225.731 miles per hour and Rahal at 225.007 miles per hour.
Per IndyCar rules, full-time entrants can only use five fresh engines from the mid-March Open Test at Barber Motorsports Park to the season finale in mid-October at Auto Club Speedway. Entrants are only allowed to change powerplants once they meet a mileage threshold of 2,000 miles or receive IndyCar’s approval.
Newgarden and Rahal are each now on their third engines of the season, while Kimball and Franchitti are both on their second engines.
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.