IndyCar weekend schedule Iowa
Joe Skibinski/IndyCar

IndyCar doubleheader race weekend schedule for Iowa Speedway

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The NTT IndyCar Series will hold its second consecutive race weekend doubleheader at Iowa Speedway but with a few schedule twists.

After last weekend’s Saturday-Sunday afternoon slate on the Road America road course, IndyCar will race under the lights Friday and Saturday night on Iowa Speedway’s 0.894-mile oval. TV coverage for both nights will begin at 8:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden won IndyCar’s only race at Iowa last year on his way to the 2019 championship. Andretti Autosport has a series-leading seven victories at the Newton, Iowa, track, including three by Ryan Hunter-Reay.

It’s been 10 years (Tony Kanaan, June 20, 2010) since the most recent victory at Iowa for Chip Ganassi Racing, which will be aiming to keep its undefeated streak intact this year.

Scott Dixon won the first three races (Texas Motor Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, Road America No. 1), and Felix Rosenqvist scored his first IndyCar victory Sunday at Road America for Ganassi’s fourth consecutive victory to open the 2020 season.

This also will be the second consecutive weekend that fans will be allowed at an IndyCar race. Iowa will have a maximum crowd of about 5,000 in its grandstands.

Hereโ€™s the IndyCar weekend schedule at Iowa Speedway:

(All times are Eastern)

IndyCar weekend schedule: Thursday, July 16

5 p.m.: Paddock load-in for NTT IndyCar Series teams

IndyCar weekend schedule: Friday, July 17

9:30 a.m.: IndyCar garage opens

10 a.m.: IndyCar tech opens

1 p.m.: Driver, team manager meeting (conference call)

2-2:30 p.m.: IndyCar practice for rookies and first-time Iowa drivers (NBC Sports Gold)

2:30-3:30 p.m.: IndyCar practice (NBC Sports Gold)

5:30 p.m.: IndyCar qualifying for both races (first lap Friday lineup, second lap Saturday lineup) (NBC Sports Gold)

8:30 p.m.: IndyCar prerace on NBCSN

8:40 p.m.: Cars to grid

8:58 p.m.: Invocation and national anthem

9 p.m.: IndyCar Iowa race #1 (NBCSN)

9:10 p.m.: Command to start engines

9:15 p.m.: Green flag (250 laps)

IndyCar weekend schedule: Saturday, July 18

Noon: IndyCar garage, tech open

3:30 p.m.: IndyCar practice (NBC Sports Gold)

8:10 pm.: Cars to grid

8:28 p.m.: Invocation and national anthem

8:30 p.m.: IndyCar Iowa race #2 (NBCSN)

8:40 p.m.: Command to start engines

8:45 p.m.: Green flag (250 laps)

10:30 p.m.: Postrace show (NBCSN, NBC Sports Gold)

Lewis Hamilton receives Daytona 500 invitation from Bubba Wallace

Lewis Hamilton Bubba Wallace
Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images
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Lewis Hamilton is a fan of the new NASCAR Cup Series team formed by Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan to field a car for Bubba Wallace.

Will the six-time Formula One champion also be a fan in person at a NASCAR race in the near future?

Wallace is hoping so.

After Hamilton tweeted his support Tuesday morning about the news of a Hamlin-Jordan-Wallace team making its debut with the 2021 season, Wallace responded with a sly invitation to the Daytona 500.

Much would need to be worked out, starting with how much garage and grandstand access would be afforded for a 2021 season opener that likely would occur during a still ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

But it would seem fitting given that Hamilton and Wallace have been two of the world’s most outspoken Black athletes about the quest for diversity and racial justice. Hamilton recently reaffirmed his commitment to activism after his donning a Breonna Taylor shirt sparked an FIA inquiry.

The idea of Hamilton attending the season opener already had legs, too. The Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 driver has expressed a desire to race the Daytona 500 after he has retired from Formula One.

He was a spectator (with racing legend Mario Andretti) at four-time champion Jeff Gordon’s final Cup race as a full-time in the 2015 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In 2011, Hamilton swapped cars with three-time champion Tony Stewart at Watkins Glen International.

Having rubbed shoulders with other racing greats so often, it only would be fitting if Hamilton — who is one victory from tying Michael Schumacher’s career record and also could tie the F1 record with a seventh championship this season — spent some time with the greatest basketball player of all time.

Jeff Gordon was flanked by Mario Andretti and Lewis Hamilton before the 2015 Cup season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway (Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images).