champagne

Veteran racer Scott Dixon (center), who won the NTT IndyCar Series Honda 200 at Mid-Ohio in 2019, sprays champagne with runner-up finisher Felix Rosenqvist (left) and third-place finisher Ryan Hunter-Reay. (Richland Source file photo)

LEXINGTON -- Officials with the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Monday confirmed The Honda Indy 200 will be a double-header weekend, with races set Aug. 8 and 9.

Both NTT IndyCar Series races will be 75 laps on the 2.258-mile, 13-turn permanent road course.

The announcement from Mid-Ohio on Monday came just after NTT IndyCar officials made season schedule changes official.

Three events already scheduled on the series calendar will now become doubleheader weekends, including INDYCAR’s upcoming race weekend at Mid-Ohio.

Both weekend races will be points-paying races in the IndyCar Championship race.

In addition, race weekends at World Wide Technology Raceway near St. Louis in August and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course in October will become doubleheader weekends.

WWTR will feature races Aug. 29-30. IMS will add a road course race Oct. 2 before the already scheduled event Oct. 3.

“Our race fans have loved the exciting doubleheader action of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES this year at Road America and Iowa Speedway,”  said Penske Entertainment Corp. President & CEO Mark Miles.

“We look forward to giving them even more world-class entertainment this season at three of the most exciting racetracks on the NTT INDYCAR SERIES calendar," he said.

INDYCAR’s race at Portland International Raceway and doubleheader weekend at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The cancellation of both event weekends was a mutual decision between the series and promoters following close consultation and monitoring of the local situation. The series looks forward to returning to both venues in 2021.

The NTT IndyCar Series remains on track to run 14 races in the 2020 season. The full, updated schedule can be found at INDYCAR.com/Schedule.

The event at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course will operate under the “Responsible RestartOhio” guidelines for COVID-19 after receiving approval from the local health department for limited spectator attendance.

Tickets will be sold on a first come, first served basis. Customers are encouraged to purchase online in advance at midohio.com. Motorhome and tent camping will also be permitted during the event. The grandstands, paddock and pits will not be open to spectators to adhere to social distancing guidelines.

In accordance with Ohio’s statewide mask mandate in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, spectators are required to wear facial coverings while on property. They will also be subject to a temperature check and health screening when entering the facility.

Fans should visit midohio.com/covid19 for more information on the essential health and safety protocols. All spectators will enter the facility through Gate 1.

Additional answers to common fan questions can be found at midohio.com/covid19faq as well as information for those spectators who had purchased grandstand seats, paddock and pit passes previously.

“Our team greatly appreciates the guidance and leadership of Morrow County Health Commissioner Stephanie Bragg working through the details with us on opening this event to a limited amount of spectators,” said Craig Rust, president of Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

“It was great to have our fans out for the Vintage Grand Prix of Mid-Ohio in late June, which utilized best practices for COVID-19 protocols, and we’re grateful that race weekend went well. The cooperation of following all the COVID-19 protocols by everyone in attendance will be important for a successful Honda Indy 200 event," Rust said.

The NTT INDYCAR SERIES will run its 36th and 37th races in its history at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The green flag will drop at 2:45 p.m. EDT on Aug. 8, and then at 1:45 p.m. EDT on Aug. 9.

The weekend schedule will also feature doubleheader races for the Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires and tripleheader events for the Cooper Tires UF2000 Championship, both part of the Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires development ladder for open-wheel racing’s rising stars. The Global Mazda MX-5 Cup will also hold two races across the weekend.

Children 12 and under always receive free general admission when accompanied by a ticketed adult. Visit midohio.com for more information, and follow its Facebook page @MidOhioSportsCarCourse, Twitter @Mid_Ohio or Instagram @officialmidohio for the latest news.

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