Indy Lights preps for Freedom 100 with Open Test at Indianapolis


While the Verizon IndyCar Series will stage two events at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this month, its top developmental league is going even further.

Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires is running a doubleheader (Race 1 – Friday, Race 2 – Saturday) on the IMS road course as part of the Grand Prix of Indianapolis before taking on the famous Brickyard oval in the Freedom 100 on Carb Day, May 23.

Today, 13 drivers prepared for the Freedom 100 by holding a Open Test that was led by Andretti Autosport’s Matthew Brabham in the first session and Belardi Auto Racing’s Gabby Chaves in the second session.

IMS president J. Douglas Boles was in attendance for the test, and grabbed this quick clip.


In the first session, Brabham topped the time sheets with a lap of 186.845 miles per hour that was just a touch better than the best from his teammate and Indy Lights championship leader Zach Veach, who topped out at 186.610 mph.

Schmidt Peterson Motorsports’ Luiz Razia and Jack Harvey were third and fourth in the session, each of them breaking 186 mph with their best laps. Chaves, who split the recent Indy Lights doubleheader at Barber Motorsports Park with Veach, was fifth at 185.592 mph.

The second session saw speeds go up and Chaves followed suit, rising to the top with a lap of 187.819 mph for the Belardi camp. Harvey also broke Brabham’s top time from the first session, logging a lap of 187.006 mph.

Razia was third again in the afternoon at 186.373 mph, followed by Veach in fourth and Brabham in fifth.



NTT re-signs as IndyCar title sponsor in multiyear deal starting with the 2024 season

James Black/Penske Entertainment

The IndyCar Series has re-signed NTT as its title sponsor in a multiyear agreement starting in 2024.

NTT, a global information technology and communications company based in Japan, became the series’ title sponsor before the 2019 season after starting as a sponsor of the No. 10 Dallara-Honda for Chip Ganassi Racing.

NTT Data (a subsidiary of parent company Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp.) will remain the official technology partner of IndyCar, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Indy 500 and the NASCAR Brickyard weekend.

With the extension, an IndyCar spokesman said NTT would become the second-longest title sponsor in series history. The longest title sponsor was PPG from 1980-97 (under the CART sanction of the Champ Car Series).

NTT replaced Verizon, which was IndyCar’s title sponsor from 2014-18 after IZOD from 2010-13.

“NTT is an excellent partner across our enterprise with strong expertise and a deep commitment to our sport,” Penske Corp. chairman and IndyCar owner Roger Penske said in a release. “From Smart Venue technology at the Racing Capital of the World to the reimagined Series mobile application, NTT is transforming the fan experience in new and innovative ways. We look forward to a bright future together.”

NTT has used artificial intelligence-enabled optical detection technology at IMS to provide information to the track’s operations and security teams, helping improve fan traffic flow and safety, the track said.

“IndyCar is a great partner for NTT Data because of our shared commitment to driving innovation, increasing sustainability and delivering amazing experiences,” NTT Data CEO Kaz Nishihata said in a release. “We also appreciate how IndyCar is so diverse, with drivers from 15 different countries, and races that range from short ovals and superspeedways to road and street courses. It’s both an incredible sport and a wonderful example for our world.”

NTT also has been instrumental in helping redesign the IndyCar app and providing more race and driver data for use in NBC Sports’ broadcasts by utilizing 140 data points from every car in the field.

“NTT is fully invested in the development and growth of our sport and has already established a terrific track record in our industry with problem-solving capabilities and access to top talent and tools,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said.

Said NTT Data Services CEO Bob Pryor: “We’re thrilled to continue our collaborations that enhance and expand the fan experience for motorsports and serve as proof points for data analytics, AI, and other innovative digital technologies. For more than a century, this racing series has pioneered innovations making driving safer for everyone, and by continuing this relationship, we will accelerate the pace of innovations and new technologies, particularly related to sustainability that ultimately can benefit organizations, communities and individuals around the world.”

Starting as a Japanese telephone company, NTT grew into a $100 billion-plus tech services giant with U.S. operations based in Plano, Texas.