For the first time since 2014, the NTT INDYCAR SERIES will conduct doubleheader events at tracks beside the Raceway at Belle Isle Park, and the first two twin bills will happen in consecutive weekends.
Road America and Iowa Speedway will offer the challenge of racing on the largest and smallest tracks on the schedule, but with a total of 200 points on offer over seven days, the stage for the championship race could be set.
“With doubleheaders in Road America and Iowa the next two weekends, the fans should get some really good action,” said five-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion Scott Dixon. “That means lots of racing, and I think that’s what we all want both as drivers and as racing fans.”
The NTT INDYCAR SERIES held doubleheaders in 2013 and 2014 on the Streets of Toronto’s Exhibition Place and Houston’s Reliant Park. Dixon and Graham Rahal are the only drivers to sweep doubleheader races. Dixon took the two Toronto races in 2013, while Rahal swept the Belle Isle doubleheader in 2017.
For teams, the doubleheader is even more challenging as they have to prepare for a day of practice, qualifying and a 55-lap race Saturday, only to return after a night’s sleep for qualifying and a full 55-lap race Sunday.
And it leaves little room for error.
“One little mishap puts you in a tailspin the whole weekend, and it’s really hard to come back from,” Meyer Shank Racing co-owner Michael Shank told IndyStar’s Nathan Brown. “And it can be as simple as a little electrical issue that keeps you out of 20 minutes of a given session. That time in those one-day shows is so precious.”