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INDYCAR releases 2017 testing regulations

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One of the big talking points in the paddock during the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series season has been how much in-season testing there’s been. In 2017, there will be less.

Here’s an outline from INDYCAR of what the 2017 testing regulations will look like:

INDYCAR announced today testing regulations for the 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series season highlighted by four open tests during the season and an overall reduction in the amount of in-season testing.

INDYCAR will conduct the following open tests next year: Feb. 10-11 at Phoenix International Raceway; March 21 at Barber Motorsports Park; May 2 at Gateway Motorsports Park and Sept. 14 at Sonoma Raceway – the same week as the season finale in 2017.

“We collaborated with all of our teams on the 2017 testing regulations with the goal of minimizing the amount of in-season testing,” said Jay Frye, INDYCAR president of competition and operations. “The majority of testing will take place at a series of open tests, which have been strategically routed to coincide with our race schedule. As we finalized our regulations, the focus was on making our test schedule more efficient and minimizing the overall demands on the crews during the year. We’re confident that this is a positive step forward for the Verizon IndyCar Series.”

The in-season testing window runs from April 11-Sept. 17, 2017, with teams permitted one test day – in addition to open tests – within that time frame. The off-season testing window for the 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series season begins Oct. 3, 2016, with teams permitted three test days from the start of the testing window until April 6, 2017 – which allows teams to utilize the break between the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg (March 12) and the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (April 9).

Teams may earn additional test days by running a rookie driver (up to four days) for the season, a current Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires driver (one day) or operating an Indy Lights team under the same ownership as the Verizon IndyCar Series team (one day). New teams entering the Verizon IndyCar Series would be allowed up to four additional test days.

Tire testing comes at the request of Firestone, the official tire supplier to the Verizon IndyCar Series. Any tire test is limited to two days, either in-season or off-season, with no more than two teams participating. All teams are permitted to have one car conduct team testing during an in-season tire test. Engine testing for Chevrolet and Honda is limited to two days for each manufacturer in the off-season window.

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.