INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – Open-Wheels Motorsports Sanctioning is proud to announce the third running of the Open-Wheels 500 Mile Race, to be held Saturday, November 19th, 2022.
After a one-year absence, the two-week event returns to celebrate the history Greatest Spectacle in Racing and to bring sim racers from all around the world to compete in the most authentic, dramatic, and immersive “500” experience in sim racing.
“I’m truly excited to reveal the race date for the return of this great race,” said Arjuna Kankipati, president of the Open-Wheels 500. “Since announcing the return of the Open-Wheels 500, I’ve been hearing one question over and over again. “When is the race?”. The recent announcement of an updated Indianapolis Motor Speedway further excited our competitiors! Today, I anticipate many more questions heading in my direction, as we build towards the start of the World’s Greatest Sim Race”.
With the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) launching its IMSA Esports Global Championship, the race date has been brought forward to a Saturday for the very first time. With this change, the “Day before the 500” festivities – which have included the Veterans 100 and Pit Stop Competition in the past – will unfortunatley not be taking place.
Instead, to celebrate the 3rd running of the Open-Wheels 500, Open-Wheels Motorsports Sanctioning is excited to announce the 2022 Open-Wheels GP. The Open-Wheels GP will be held Saturday, November 5th, 2022, exactly two weeks before the 2022 Open-Wheels 500. Entries for the Open-Wheels GP are separate from the Open-Wheels 500, bringing a new audience to the Open-Wheels community!
The Opening Day of Practice will be held on Monday, November 7th followed by a further practice day on Wednesday, November 9th building to “Fast Friday” on Friday, November 11th. Pole Day qualifications will be held on Saturday, November 12th with Bump Day qualifications locking in the field of 33 on Sunday, November 13th. During race week, the 33 qualified competitors will have one final practice on Wednesday, November 16th to work on their cars heading into Race Day just 3 days later.
More details regarding the event schedule will be shared over the coming weeks.
Partnering for the third year as the Open-Wheels 500’s exclusive broadcast partner, RaceSpot TV will feature in-depth coverage of the 2022 race.
Not just the President of Open-Wheels, Arjuna Kankipati is part of commentary and production team for RaceSpot TV. “Even before I took on the responsibility of organizing the event, Open-Wheels was special”, said Kankipati. I only got to commentate on it once, but talking to drivers about the nerves that arise with limited qualifying runs… and that’s to lock yourself into the field for the 500 gruelling miles of racing. The entire team at RaceSpot – not just myself – is enthused about having Open-Wheels back where it belongs, on RaceSpot TV”.
The first two runnings of the event saw a diverse group of drivers from around the world attempt to make the field of 33, leading to what some consider the most talented grid in iRacing “500” history. Showing the diversity of the entry list, the inaugural Open-Wheels champion, Michele Costantini (Apex Racing Team), hails from Italy while his successor in 2021, Hugo Olsson (Powerslide Motorsports), calls Sweden home.
“The way the Open-Wheels 500 replicates the real life counterpart is amazing with the stress of going out there qualifying knowing how few attempts you have. I believe nothing gets close to it in IndyCar sim racing”, said Olsson as he reflected on 2020. “[Powerslide Motorsports] had put down a lot of work and it paid off with our 1-2 finish. I hope to end up being the first two-time winner this November.”
For interested participants, entries will be accepted between September 1 and October 15. Entries from all drivers are welcomed, and the entry form will be accessible on September 1 via Open-Wheels.com, the iRacing forums, the Open-Wheels 500 Discord, and Open-Wheels social media.
Individuals interested in supporting the event via sponsorship should contact Arjuna Kankipati at arjuna@Open-Wheels.com for further information.