IndyCar’s Bryan Herta remains hopeful through COVID-19 shutdown

INDYCAR Photo
0 Comments

Colton Herta’s father, Bryan, is sometimes asked for advice on a variety of topics by his son. They can range on questions about racing or about life.

As a team co-owner of the No. 98 Honda at Andretti Autosport, Bryan Herta is often consulted on business and performance topics.

Herta usually likes to have the answers.

But he struggles with one question that has hovered over the NTT IndyCar Series since it was shut down on March 13.

“When do we go back to racing? It’s complete conjecture,” Herta told NBCSports.com. “Not knowing is hard.”

In the face of adversity, all Herta can do is hope.

“I’m hopeful,” he said. “I don’t want to say I’m confident because I don’t really know. I don’t think anybody does. I’m hopeful. We have to follow what the government is advising and what other sports are doing as well. I’m hopeful we can go back to racing.

“In my mind, personally, do we go back to racing without fans at first? Are they closed events, but still bring it to a television audience? It seems like it is going to be a longer, slower process to have crowds of people. But I don’t really know.”

Bryan Herta (left), Michael Andretti (center), Marco Andretti (right) — INDYCAR Photo

In addition to his partnership at Andretti Autosport, Herta also owns an IMSA Sports Car team at Bryan Herta Autosport. It’s a Hyundai Motorsport effort that competes in the IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge.

While that team has shut down, Herta’s operation is giving back to the community by creating safety masks for first responders in the state of Indiana.

“On our IMSA team, we’re going to try to do as much as we can,” Herta said. “Some of our guys on the IMSA team are building some safety masks for first responders for the State of Indiana. We’re going to chip in and do as much as we can before they tell us, ‘Let’s go. Load your trucks. Let’s go racing.’”

Herta’s effort is separate from the Andretti Autosport program that is currently building framework for medical face shields.

“We’re assembling masks,” Herta explained. “Andretti has 3D printing technologies and are making parts to assemble safety shields. We are going to do some of the assembly and prepping them to go off to hospitals around the state of Indiana.

“We’ve worked through a number of groups in the state, including the Indiana Economic Development Commission. When we got shut down, we told them we have people, trucks, a facility and if we could help the community, let us know. That was a couple of weeks ago.

“Just this week, we were asked to help assemble masks. We told them we would be more than happy to help.”

Herta said the IMSA team started off with 1,500 masks a week but could increase that to 3,000 to 4,000 a week if needed.

“We’re still working through all of that,” Herta said. “We are working with crews of 6-8 people to keep the numbers small for social distancing.”

Herta is one of the many in racing that are doing their part in the battle against COVID-19. It helps take his mind off the long, seemingly endless days that remained unknown before racing can return to action.

Follow Bruce Martin on Twitter at @BruceMartin_500 

IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
Douglas Stringer/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
0 Comments

The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:


Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change