Like 'presents under the tree': IMS opens for testing Wednesday

Indianapolis Motor Speedway Logo (IMS)
IMS open test
Looking forward to the Month of May
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SPEEDWAY, Ind. (WTHR) — The calendar may read April, but Wednesday is an important day when it comes to the iconic Month of May in Indianapolis.

Wednesday is open test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Think of it as opening day in baseball. Drivers — including veterans and rookies — get on the track and get a refresher on the famous 2.5-mile oval.

As you can imagine, drivers are excited.

Graham Rahal tweeted, "the greatest month in racing is almost here, folks."


Feel free to tell your boss you're going to miss work Wednesday, said James Hinchcliffe. "They're cool with you skipping work so you can come watch the test."

Perhaps the best part about the test is that it is free to the public to attend. It runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and the Turn 2 viewing mounds will be open. Veterans get on the track from 11 to 1, followed by rookies from 1 to 3 and then all drivers from 3 to 6.

Here is the full list of drivers:

  • AJ Foyt Racing - Tony Kanaan, Matheus Leist
  • Andretti Autosport - Conor Daly, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Alexander Rossi, Zach Veach
  • Andretti Herta Autosport with Marco Andretti & Curb-Agajanian - Marco Andretti
  • Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports - Marcus Ericsson, James Hinchcliffe
  • Carlin - Max Chilton, Charlie Kimball
  • Chip Ganassi Racing - Scott Dixon, Felix Rosenqvist
  • Dale Coyne Racing - Santino Ferrucci
  • Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan - Sebastien Bourdais
  • Dreyer & Reinbold Racing - Sage Karam
  • Ed Carpenter Racing - Ed Carpenter, Ed Jones, Spencer Pigot
  • Harding Steinbrenner Racing - Colton Herta
  • Meyer Shank Racing with Arrow SPM - Jack Harvey
  • McLaren Racing - Fernando Alonso
  • Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing - Graham Rahal, Takuma Sato
  • Team Penske - Helio Castroneves, Josef Newgarden, Simon Pagenaud, Will Power

"Going to sleep tonight is a lot like knowing you're going to wake up with presents under the tree tomorrow. See you in the morning," tweeted race car driver Zach Veach.


The timing of the test is also important: Wednesday marks exactly one week away until May 1, and that's a crucial point when it comes to saving money. Ticket prices for most events at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway increases May 1, from the Grand Prix, to the Indianapolis 500, to the concerts held in the Snake Pit.

General admission for the race will go from $35 to $40; Carb Day jumps from $30 to $35 with the Concert Pit Upgrade option increasing from $25 to $40.

A number of seating options are sold out, including Paddock Penthouse and South Vista Deck Seats.

Visit indianpaolismotorspeedway.com for a full list of ticket prices and to buy tickets.

There will be more than the familiar sounds of revving engines and squealing tires at the track during May. A number of high-profile bands will be performing.

Here's a rundown of events at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during the Month of May:

  • May 10-11: Indy Grand Prix
  • May 14-17, May 20: Indianapolis 500 practices
  • May 18-19: Indy 500 qualifying
  • May 24: Carb Day
  • May 25: Legends Day
  • May 26: 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500

Outside of the track, the One America 500 Festival Mini Marathon is Saturday, May 4 and the IPL 500 Festival is May 25. Both events will be broadcast live exclusively on WTHR. For the first time, the Indianapolis 500 will be broadcast on NBC and WTHR.