Watkins Glen chosen as track for IndyCar’s iRacing series opener

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Watkins Glen International has been voted by fans as the opening track for the IndyCar iRacing Challenge.

The six-race series will begin Saturday and run through May 2 as IndyCar’s real-world competition remains sidelined by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Indianapolis Motor Speedway announced Thursday that the Indianapolis 500 would be postponed to Aug. 23, and the 2020 season is scheduled to begin May 30-31 in Detroit.

In fan voting on IndyCar.com to choose the first iRacing track, Watkins Glen International and Michigan International Speedway had emerged from an eight-track bracket that featured separate halves for road courses and ovals.

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Watkins Glen reached the final by defeating Sonoma and Montreal (which had eliminated Sebring).

Michigan eliminated the Milwaukee Mile in the first round and then knocked out Auto Club Speedway (which beat Twin Ring Motegi).

The NTT IndyCar Series raced at Watkins Glen from 2005-10 and 2016-17. Alexander Rossi, who will be competing Saturday in the online race, is the most recent winner.

The IndyCar iRacing Challenge will begin at 4 p.m. ET and will be streamed on IndyCar.com, the YouTube channels of IndyCar and iRacing, Twitch for iRacing and IndyCar’s Facebook Live.

Each race will last about 90 minutes to two hours.