Photo: Tony DiZinno

US F4’s first race date announced, with PWC at Lime Rock next May

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From the “this makes sense based on what we’ve been told” file, the new US Formula 4 Championship, announced back at Circuit of The Americas last month, will have its first race weekend May 27-28 at Lime Rock Park alongside Pirelli World Challenge.

It goes along exactly with what SCCA Pro Racing president Robert Clarke told me at Austin about the planned schedule and series partnerships for races it would attend.

“Greg Gill (interim CEO, WC Vision) and I shook hands on a deal with PWC this next year,” Clarke told me last month. “Considering our late introduction, we’re looking at late-April to mid-May timing for first event.”

And so late May fits that timing almost to a T.

The not-so-subtle undertone of running on the May 27-28 date, if you’re paying attention to calendars, is it runs on the same weekend as all three rungs of the Mazda Road to Indy ladder in Indianapolis.

The Indy Lights’ Freedom 100 runs Friday, May 27, with Pro Mazda and USF2000 running a day later at Lucas Oil Raceway just outside Indianapolis.

For a series that’s just getting off the ground and hasn’t directly said it’s competing with the Mazda Road to Indy for potential customers, it’s a pretty clear sign that it wants to attract any customers of young drivers and/or their key stakeholders to enter into this championship and is using its low costs of entry as a major selling point.

Or, it’s one hell of an intriguing coincidence.

More information on the new series is linked here.

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.