Indianapolis Motor Speedway gets OK to have 10,000 fans at Harvest Grand Prix

The Indianapolis Motor Speedway will be permitted to host up to 10,000 spectators at the inaugural Harvest Grand Prix, scheduled for Oct. 1-4.

The track announced Friday its safety plan for the event—which includes a practice day, two road races and two GT races—will allow for two spectator zones holding up the 5,000 people each. The zones will be in Turns 1 and 4. The determination to allow fans at the 300,000-seat venue came from the Marion County Public Health Department.

The decision to allow fans at the outdoor facility comes within days of other sports-related decisions by the health department, including limiting fans at Indy Eleven games to 2,500 fans and increasing the Indianapolis Colts’ capacity for its Sept. 27 game to 7,500 fans. Both teams play at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Fans at the racing events will be required to follow extensive safety precautions, including wearing face coverings, receiving temperature checks and practicing social distancing in their seating. Fans must also remain in their designated zones throughout their time at the facility.

“We can’t wait to see fans come through our gates for the first time in 2020,” IMS President J. Douglas Boles said. “They’ll be greeted by a vastly improved facility, featuring significant upgrades to the spectator experience. We’re also extremely grateful to have a presenting sponsor with the expertise and resources of [Global Medical Response] as we look to implement our detailed and comprehensive health and safety plan.”

The event will include two NTT IndyCar series races, on Oct. 2 and Oct. 3, along with an eight-hour endurance race in the GT World Challenge series.

No fans were permitted to attend the Indianapolis 500 or the Indianapolis Grand Prix over the summer, making the Harvest GP the first time the speedway will be able to show off millions of dollars in facility improvements, including new video boards, updated concession stands and restrooms and 5G wireless throughout the venue.

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6 thoughts on “Indianapolis Motor Speedway gets OK to have 10,000 fans at Harvest Grand Prix

  1. I am at a loss to understand the health department’s rulings on fans in the stands for spectator events. While the road course offers less opportunity for viewing than the oval, 10,000 seats forced into two locations is a head scratcher. you would think they would want more social distance in turns 1 & 4 but of course, they actually have and then some. This begs the question as to seating across from the pits and video boards, seating along the front straightaway particularly at the entry to the road course. even if you take out half of the seats as unavailable, 10,000 seats out of 150,000 seats is hard to understand. Then of course, we have the Colts who were allocated less seats than the Indy Eleven. When the disparity became public, the obvious error in the allowable, was met by the decision to cut the number of seats available for the Indy Eleven. We have all seen disparities with the restaurants, church’s, bars, schools, offices, and other retail business’ and i appreciate everyone trying to do their best and get it right, but this the limits at events defies logic. The venues in particular are the places most likely to organize and logistically control the spectators at the event as they cannot affords not to do so. We can do better with this.

    1. The issue isn’t the seating. It’s the number of people who will be in close quarters for a fairly long period walking in, going through the security check/turnstiles, passing in aisles and concourses, and waiting at concession stands.

  2. IBJ a little upset that they can’t shut it all down. Maybe you can become the story once but not all the time. The Indy Eleven thank you for your support. Keep stirring the pot!

  3. Another power play by the Marion County Public Health Department and the mayor’s office, plain and simple. “We’re the boss of you and you can’t do a damn thing about it. Live with it.” Disgusting.

  4. Damn that was nice of Hogsett & Company. Our local government leaders have got to be the smartest people on the planet to know exactly how many spectators to put in the stands. But then they’re Dems and they know everything.

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