Webber rules out future Indy 500 run for shot at Triple Crown

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SPA – Mark Webber has ruled out a future entry to the Indianapolis 500 for a shot at becoming just the second driver in history to complete the Triple Crown of Motorsport.

The Triple Crown is made up of the Indy 500, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Monaco Grand Prix, three of racing’s most prestigious and challenging events.

Graham Hill is the only driver to have won all three legs, claiming five wins at Monaco alongside victory at the Brickyard in 1966 and Le Mans in 1972.

Webber won the Monaco Grand Prix in 2010 and 2012, and will battle for his first Le Mans victory with Porsche next month after finishing second in last year’s race.

With one leg ticked off and one well within reach, might Webber enter the 500 in the future for a shot at completing the Triple Crown?

“No,” Webber said ahead of Saturday’s FIA World Endurance Championship race at Spa.

“You need to be specialized, you need to grow up on that stuff I think.

“On the ovals, I think I would enjoy the high-speed nature when I was younger, but not at 40.

“I’m too sensible now.”

The only active driver who has two legs completed is Juan Pablo Montoya, having won the Monaco Grand Prix in 2003 and the Indy 500 on two occasions.

Montoya enjoyed a successful test with Porsche in an LMP1 car at the end of last year and was receptive to a possible run at Le Mans.

However, it seems unlikely in the short-term after the German marque’s decision to stop entering a third car to the race in the wake of the Volkswagen emissions scandal.

IndyCar disappointed by delay of video game but aiming to launch at start of 2024

IndyCar video game 2024

An IndyCar executive said there is “absolutely” disappointment that its long-awaited video game recently was delayed beyond its target date, but the series remains optimistic about the new title.

“Well, I don’t know how quick it will be, but the whole situation is important to us,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said during a news conference Monday morning to announce IndyCar’s NTT title sponsorship. “Motorsport Games has spent a lot of money, a lot of effort to create an IndyCar title. What we’ve seen of that effort, which is not completely obvious, is very reassuring.

“I think it’s going to be outstanding. That’s our shared objective, that when it is released, it’s just widely accepted. A great credit both to IndyCar racing, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, something that our fans love.”

In June 2021, IndyCar announced a new partnership with Motorsport Games to create and distribute an IndyCar video game for the PC and Xbox and PlayStation consoles in 2023.

But during an earnings call last week, Motorsport Games said the IndyCar game had been delayed to 2024 to ensure high quality.

Somewhat compounding the delay is that IndyCar’s license for iRacing expired after the end of the 2022 season because of its exclusive agreement with Motorsport Games.

That’s resulted in significant changes for IndyCar on iRacing, which had provided a high-profile way for the series to stay visible during its 2020 shutdown from the pandemic. (Players still can race an unbranded car but don’t race on current IndyCar tracks, nor can they stream).

That’s helped ratchet up the attention on having a video game outlet for IndyCar.

“I wish we had an IndyCar title 10 years ago,” said Miles, who has been working with the organization since 2013. “We’ve been close, but we’ve had these I think speed bumps.”

IndyCar is hopeful the Motorsports Game edition will be ready at the start of 2024. Miles hinted that beta versions could be unveiled to reporters ahead of the time “to begin to show the progress in a narrow way to make sure we’ve got it right, to test the progress so that we’re ready when they’re ready.”

It’s been nearly 18 years since the release of the most recent IndyCar video game for console or PC.

“(We) better get it right,” Miles said. “It’s something we’re very close to and continue to think about what it is to make sure we get it over the line in due course.”