PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Plenty of racing action this weekend for all of the gear heads out there. Here’s a look at what is happening both locally and nationally:
Fab 4 Friday At Lernerville:
- All four divisions will be in action tonight at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver. Carl Bowser leads the People’s Natural Gas Sprint Car standings with Brandon Spithaler only 2-points behind. In the Precise Racing Products DIRTcar Late Models Russ King holds a 3-point lead over Matt Lux with Michael Lake 5-points behind. Garrett Krummert leads the Diehl Automotive Big Block Modified standings by 3-points over Dave Murdick. Rex King Jr and Brian Swartzlander are 7-points out of the top spot. In the Millerstown Pic-A-Part DIRTcar/RUSH Pro Stocks Tyler Dietz leads Jason Fosnaught by 4-points. Mike Miller is one point behind Fosnaught and Corey McPherson is 7-points out of the lead.
INDYCAR Doubleheader at Iowa Speedway:
- The NTT INDYCAR SERIES begins a doubleheader at Iowa Speedway Friday night. Chip Ganassi Racing is looking to make it 5-in-a-row after Scott Dixon won the first three races and his teammate Felix Rosenqvist won race 2 at Road America. Andretti Autosport has won six of the last 10 races at Iowa and seven of the 13-races run at the 7/8ths mile oval. Dixon leads the Championship standings by 54-points over Colton Herta. The green flag drops at 9:15 p.m. ET on Friday and at 8:45 p.m. ET on Saturday.
Herb Scott Memorial Saturday at PPMS:
- The 8th Annual Herb Scott Memorial for the Diehl Automotive RUSH Late Model Dirt Series and the RUSH Late Model Touring Series takes place Saturday night at Pittsburgh’s Pennsylvania Motor Speedway. Scott was a 10-time track Champion at Heidelberg Raceway and had over 520-feature wins. Also on the schedule are the RUSH Sportsman Modified Dirt Series, the PPMS Pro Stocks, the Keystone Coach Works Hobby Stocks, the Four Cylinders, and the Young Guns. Gates open at 5 p.m., hot laps begin at 6 p.m., and the racing action will begin at 7 p.m.
5 Divisions of Racing at Jennerstown:
- Five divisions of racing are on tap at Jennerstown Speedway on Saturday. Teddy Gibala leads Barry Awtey by 9-points in the Late Model standings. Anthony Aiello holds a 5-point lead or RJ Dallape in the Modifieds. Casey Fleegle and Aaron VanFleet are tied atop the Street Stocks standings with Mel Wilt 16-points back. In the Fast Fours, Jeff Vasos holds a 2-point lead over Michael Strouse with Paul Koffler III 34-points behind. Dale Kimblerly has built a 31-point lead in the Chargers standings based on the strength of 4-wins. Kyle Burkholder sits in 2nd place, 31-points behind the leader. Hot laps start at 4:30 with Opening Ceremonies at 5:55 p.m.
All Stars Begin Keystone State Weekend:
- The Ollies Bargain Outlet All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 begins a three-race Western Pennsylvania swing this weekend. The action begins Friday night at Williams Grove with the annual Tommy Hinnershitz Memorial Classic. Hinnershitz was a 7-time AAA/USAC Eastern Big Car Champion. The All Stars move to Port Royal on Saturday for The Bob Weikert Memorial Weekend. Two separate $10,000 to win, $700 to start main events.
All Three NASCAR Series At Texas Motor Speedway:
- The top three NASCAR Series are racing at Texas Motor Speedway this weekend. The NASCAR Xfinity Series hits the track first on Saturday with the My Bariatric Solutions 300 at 3 p.m. ET. Saturday night the Gander RV & Outdoors NASCAR Truck Series takes center stage with the Vankor 350 at 8 p.m. ET. The NASCAR Cup Series races on Sunday with the O’Reilly Auto Parts 500 at 3 p.m. ET.
INDYCAR Community Reacts To No Fans At Indy 500
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The INDYCAR community is reacting to the news that the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has decided to run the Indy 500 on August 23 without fans in attendance. The decision is a reversal of a plan set forth a few weeks ago where the event would be run in front of 25-percent of the capacity of the Speedway.
Speedway President J. Douglas Boles, who has been a guest on The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast, is appreciative of his team and the fans:
Heartbroken for my fellow fans. Proud of the @IMS team that has worked thousands of hours to make the race happen with spectators. Even through end of yesterday we were working on setting up to open the gates. Thankful for Roger’s passion, commitment & leadership in these times. https://t.co/I7TadsP2sd
— J. Douglas Boles (@jdouglas4) August 4, 2020
Rahal Letterman Lanigan’s Graham Rahal took to social media to make some great points:
Today’s news brought lots of mixed emotions, but we’ve got to do what is necessary for our fans & community’s health & safety now in order to keep this sport & race alive for generations to come. It won’t be the same without you all on 8/23, but we’ll be back strong in 2021.(2/2) pic.twitter.com/hL2ITFB27W
— Graham Rahal (@GrahamRahal) August 4, 2020
Spencer Pigot who drives for Steelers minority owner Rob Citrone and Robbie Buhl’s team Citrone Buhl Autosport with RLL also took to Twitter to express his feelings:
It's going to look and feel a lot different this year but it's still the Indy 500 and we will be giving it our all to entertain the fans watching from home! Looking forward to seeing you all back at the track next year. #Indy500 https://t.co/MPy4X1RsSK
— Spencer Pigot (@SpencerPigot) August 4, 2020
Chip Ganassi Racing’s Marcus Ericsson also weighed in:
Regarding the #Indy500 news, it’s a shame we cannot race in front of all you amazing fans! But I trust and believe @IndyCar have made the right call, safety always comes first. We will do everything to make it a great show for you all watching on the TVs back home #INDYCAR #ME8
— Marcus Ericsson (@Ericsson_Marcus) August 4, 2020
Andretti Autosport’s Ryan Hunter-Real and Alexander Rossi, two former 500 winners had this to say:
This is disappointing to say the least. Our sport, especially the Indy 500, is based on our fans. No doubt these are unprecedented times. With that said, Roger Penske & his team @IndyCar are simply doing what is necessary for the well being of our fans. https://t.co/o55xeCvVqy
— Ryan Hunter-Reay (@RyanHunterReay) August 4, 2020
— Alexander Rossi (@AlexanderRossi) August 4, 2020
Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden, who’s boss owns the Speedway has a great idea:
Can’t imagine how tough this decision must have been. It won’t be the same without everyone at @IMS , but it’s still the Greatest Spectacle In Racing. Tell your friends to tune in, post on social & tell the world to tune in. Let’s make this the most watched race ever. #Indy500 pic.twitter.com/a0ZadLYyuP
— Josef Newgarden (@josefnewgarden) August 4, 2020
Not the news we all wanted to hear and can’t imagine how tough it was to make. Gutted for every single fan. Now, let’s all work together and get EVERYONE tuned into this race on August 23rd! #Indy500 pic.twitter.com/kChEZMMO82
— Jack Harvey (@jack_harvey42) August 4, 2020
Super bummed to hear we won’t be seeing all of the amazing fans in these seats this year. Hoping to make you all proud on the big screen on Aug. 23rd at the greatest spectacle in racing. Let’s make this one to remember. #WIXIndy #INDYCAR @DRRIndyCar @WIXFilters @JusticeBrosInc pic.twitter.com/6ywkkz85Ag
— Sage Karam (@SageKaram) August 4, 2020
— Ed Carpenter (@edcarpenter20) August 4, 2020
Stay tuned to Pittsburgh Racing Now for updated comments from the INDYCAR Community
No Fans At Indianapolis 500 in 2020
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The Indianapolis Motor Speedway is cancelling plans to have fans at the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 mile race.
“It is with great regret that we announce the 104th running of the Indianapolis 500 will take place on Aug. 23 without fans. This tough decision was made following careful consideration and extensive consultation with state and city leadership” the Speedway said in a statement.
“As dedicated as we were to running the race this year with 25 percent attendance at our large outdoor facility, even with meaningful and careful precautions implemented by the city and state, the COVID-19 trends in Marion County and Indiana have worsened. Since our June 26 announcement, the number of cases in Marion County has tripled while the positivity rate has doubled. We said from the beginning of the pandemic we would put the health and safety of our community first, and while hosting spectators at a limited capacity with our robust plan in place was appropriate in late June, it is not the right path forward based on the current environment.”
The Speedway is closing all on-track activity to the general public, including practice and qualifications. Ticket holders will be credited for the 2021 Indianapolis 500 and will retain their seniority and their originally assigned seats.
News from #IMS:
It is with great regret that we announce the Indianapolis 500 will take place on August 23 without fans. This tough decision was made following careful consideration and extensive consultation with state and city leadership.
— Indianapolis Motor Speedway (@IMS) August 4, 2020
The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast – Episode 15 – Aaron Reutzel, Matthew Dillner, Chip Ganassi and more!
PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – The latest edition of The Pittsburgh Racing Now Podcast features the 2-time and defending Champion of the Ollie’s Bargain Outlet All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1 Aaron Reutzel. We also talk to Matthew Dillner of Dirty Mo Media about the new show he co-hosts with Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chip Ganassi takes his own trip down memory lane and we hear from Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials about safety protocols in place at this year’s Indy 500.