The belt tightening for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway continues.
In a much-anticipated move, IMS officials Tuesday morning confirmed that they will consolidate events surrounding the Indianapolis 500 in 2010, removing one week from the schedule. Race qualifications will be held on a single weekend.
Opening day at the famed Brickyard is being pushed back to May 15, qualifications will be held May 22 and 23 and race day will be May 30.
Jeff Belskus, the Speedway’s former chief financial officer, was hired to replace Tony George as Speedway CEO July 1 and has been promising belt tightening measures ever since.
Speedway officials said shortening month of May activities will save not only the track, but all IRL teams money on travel and operational expenses.
Last month, a source told IBJ that the IMS had laid off 40 employees, mostly from its human resources department, in a cost-saving move.
Officials would neither confirm nor deny the layoffs, referring IBJ to a statement issued following the release of Ron Green, who served 11 years as director of public relations for IMS and the Indy Racing League.
“All of our business units have been impacted by the tough global economy,” Fred Nation, IMS executive vice president of communications, said in the statement. “We will continue to address these challenges by improving the operational performance of our companies.”
IMS had about 300 employees prior to the layoffs.