The Indianapolis Motor Speedway says a new IndyCar Series road course race will take place in May 2014 at the IMS.
The event was approved Thursday, Sept. 26 during a meeting of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC board of directors.
Purists who believe the Speedway should only host the Indianapolis 500 should not be surprised that the new race will feature another break from tradition - right turns.
The so-called "Month of May" will really live up to it's name in 2014 with racing next year at the beginning of the month with this new race on a modified IMS road course, and the Indy 500 at the end of the month. All kinds of activities are in the works in between the two races.
Cars practiced on a road course earlier this month that will be tweaked before 2014. IMS promises the new race will have more turns, more passing and will be a true fan-friendly viewing experience.
Drivers love the idea. Graham Rahal is a second generation driver, son of 1986 Indy 500 winner Bobby Rahal. "What the Indy 500 was 50 years ago when my dad was racing was very different than what it is today," Rahal said. "The meaning is still the same but there's no longer the Month of May, and I think that's coming back."
"Anytime we can go racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, it's a good thing," said driver Ed Carpenter. "It's going to be odd starting our month on a road course versus the oval, but it's another race and another race at the greatest track in the world."
The race will be contested on the opening weekend of Month of May activities at IMS leading into the 98th Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 25. It will be the first time the IndyCar Series has competed on the Speedway road course, which will undergo reconfiguration this fall and next spring to create more passing zones and fan-friendly vantage points.
"This event will bring even more energy and action to the Month of May for fans and create another showcase for the diversity and excitement of the Speedway and the IndyCar Series," said Hulman & Company Chief Executive Officer Mark D. Miles. "The new road race will further enhance the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as the premier motorsports destination in the world and direct an even brighter spotlight on the Indianapolis 500."
More details about the new race, reconfigured road course and other plans for the Month of May will be announced at a media event Tuesday, Oct. 1 at IMS.