Today’s IndyCar iRacing Challenge at COTA: Start time, TV info, more

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The IndyCar iRacing Challenge will return to a road course Saturday as the fifth of six rounds is held at virtual Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas.

The 33-driver field will include newcomers Lando Norris (Formula One) and Chaz Mostert (Australian Supercars), who will be waking up in the predawn hours to race Down Under. Former Indy Lights champion Spencer Pigot also will be making his debut.

The most recent road course event at Barber Motorsports Park was won by Scott McLaughlin, who also will be racing from Australia well before the sun rises. Simon Pagenaud has won the past two races on ovals (Michigan and Twin Ring Motegi), making it three consecutive victories for Team Penske.

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Sage Karam, who won the iRacing Challenge opener at Watkins Glen International, has been strong on road courses in the series, leading 67 of 90 laps.

Here is the information on today’s virtual race:

START: The command to start engines will be given by Texas-born music artist Jack Ingram at 2:43 p.m. ET, followed by the green flag at 2:45 p.m.

TV: Coverage of the race will begin on NBCSN at 2:30 p.m. ET and also via the NBCSN stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports App. The IndyCar on NBC booth of Leigh Diffey, Townsend Bell and Paul Tracy will have the call of the race with reporter Marty Snider.

The race also can be viewed through drivers’ individual Twitch channels.

NATIONAL ANTHEM: Performed by singer-songwriter Cory Morrow and his wife, Sherry Morrow, singing the national anthem and at 2:39 p.m. ET.

TRACK: Circuit of The Americas, a 20-turn, 3.41-mile natural road course in Austin, Texas. Turn width: Varies from 39 to 52 feet. Course direction: Counterclockwise.

COMPETITION CAUTION: Lap 12. Three laps of yellow followed by a single-file restart.

DISTANCE: The AutoNation INDYCAR Challenge is 32 laps/109.1 miles/175.6 km (approximately 70 minutes).

PUSH TO PASS: 10 activations for a 10-second duration

SETUPS: Fixed; no changes allowed for drivers.

PIT STOPS: Two. Fuel window approximately 40 laps.

FAST REPAIRS: Two (drivers have been allowed two fast repairs, the equivalent of hitting a reset button, at the past two races on road courses; on ovals, drivers have been limited to one fast repair).

REAL WORLD AT COTA: There has been one IndyCar race at COTA. On March 24, 2019, Colton Herta became the youngest winner in series history at 18.

IndyCar rookie Oliver Askew swept both Indy Lights races last March at COTA.

UNOFFICIAL POINTS STANDINGS: There is no championship at play, but if points were being kept, Simon Pagenaud (who has won the past two races) would be leading. Click here for the points standings after Twin Ring Motegi.

PAST FOUR ROUNDS: Click here for the full boxscore from Twin Ring Motegi. Click here for the full boxscore from Michigan. Click here for the full boxscore from Barber. Click here for the full box score from Watkins Glen.

NEXT: The AutoNation INDYCAR Challenge at Circuit of The Americas is the fifth of six events to be held each Saturday through May 2. Next week’s finale will take place at a non-IndyCar “Dream” track that will be announced soon.

ENTRY LIST: Click here to view the entry list for the fifth round of the IndyCar iRacing Challenge.

SPOTTER’S GUIDE:Click here to view the paint schemes being used in today’s race at Circuit of The Americas.