Open-Wheels Motorsports Sanctioning (OWMS) is the official sanctioning body of the Open-Wheels 500 Mile Race. OWMS oversees all aspects of the 500 Mile Race, including competition, fundraising, marketing and media, and even photography.

Open-Wheels Motorsports Sanctioning was founded by Tanner Watkins in 2019 as an extension of the Watkins Motorsports Group to promote the Open-Wheels 500 and further develop the product of sim racing as a viable form of competition and entertainment.


Arjuna is the President of Open-Wheels Motorsports Sanctioning, taking on the responsibility from Tanner Watkins in 2022. An experienced software developer, Kankipati also brings in broadcasting experience with his role as Broadcast Director at RaceSpot TV – winning the 2021 VCO SIMMY Award for Best Commentary.

Founder & Advisor

Tanner is Founder of Open-Wheels Motorsports Sanctioning, which first ran the Open-Wheels 500 in 2019. After stepping down as President in 2022, he remains as an advisor to Open-Wheels Motorsports Sanctioning. A graduate of Eastern Illinois University and the University of Southern Indiana, Watkins is a veteran in the sim racing community and serves as the Marketing and Media Manager at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis.

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