After a couple month’s worth of back-and-forth in the media and multiple meetings between officials to hammer out a deal, INDYCAR and Texas Motor Speedway announced an extension that will bring open-wheel racing back to the 1.5-mile track through 2022.
While track president Eddie Gossage was adamant in pursuing the weekend following the Indianapolis 500, the 2019 Texas race will be run on Saturday, June 8 with the Detroit Grand Prix remaining in place as the first race following Indy.
“INDYCAR is pleased to continue its long relationship with Texas Motor Speedway, a partnership that stretches to 1997,” said Mark Miles, CEO of Hulman & Company. “This oval track annually produces some of the most exciting racing of the season, contributes to the diversity of the schedule and helps us continue the oval heritage of Indy car racing. It’s good to know that Texas will remain a mainstay of the Verizon IndyCar Series for years to come.”
Also included in the release was confirmation that DXC Technology will return as the race’s title sponsor for the foreseeable future. Texas Motor Speedway has hosted Indy car racing since the track’s birth in 1997, with 30 open wheel races under their belt between now and then.
“Texas Motor Speedway is the second home of Indy car racing, and we are thrilled to extend our partnership with the Verizon IndyCar Series and with DXC Technology,” said Gossage. “We are pleased to have negotiated a sanction agreement that allows Texas Motor Speedway to move forward with INDYCAR. Our company has invested significant dollars into the sport and a tremendous amount of effort growing the sport through the years.”
Only three tracks on the IndyCar Series schedule have held more events than Texas Motor Speedway: the Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval (102 races), the Long Beach, California street course (35 races) and the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (34 races).
Texas’ 30-race history was bolstered by a time period between 1998 and 2004 where the facility hosted two races a year, plus a single-day doubleheader in 2011.
“So many great moments in this sport have occurred at Texas Motor Speedway,” Gossage said. “This is and always will be ‘America’s original nighttime Indy car race.’ Photo finishes and victory lane drama have been the standard over the years.
“No other track has seen as many Verizon IndyCar Series races over the last two-plus decades. Texas Motor Speedway has been good for Indy car racing and Indy car racing has been good for Texas Motor Speedway.”
Also of note: INDYCAR reported this morning that the 2019 series schedule is expected to be released in September.
Image by Chris Owens/INDYCAR.