Total of four races equals busy weekend at IMS



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Paul Menard was the surprise winner at the Brickyard last year. It was Menard's first career Sprint Cup win. A total of four races will take place at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend. (Scott Richardson/Daily Reporter file photo).


Paul Menard was the surprise winner at the Brickyard last year. It was Menard's first career Sprint Cup win. A total of four races will take place at Indianapolis Motor Speedway this weekend. (Scott Richardson/Daily Reporter file photo).


The Brickyard 400 remains one of the crown jewel races on the NASCAR schedule. But the race — this year, termed the Curtiss Shaver 400 by its title sponsor — has undergone a significant facelift for its 19th running.

Having been the lone standalone event on the NASCAR schedule — other than a brief run when it was paired with an event in the now-defunct International Race of Champions — the one-race weekend will multiply, with four races utilizing both the oval and road course during the four-day event.

Whether it pumps life into an event that has seen its attendance decline over the years is to be seen, but it certainly will be the busiest weekend in IMS history.

Thursday will feature an afternoon of Nationwide Series practice, followed by two Grand Am races on Friday — an event highlighting its Continental Tire series in the afternoon, then the Daytona Prototype and Grand Touring cars take the stage for a twilight endurance race late Friday afternoon. The green flag is scheduled to fall at 4:10 p.m.

Saturday will see Sprint Cup practice and qualifying, Nationwide Series qualifying and then a 100-lap, 250-mile Nationwide Series race on the 2.5-mile oval in the span of an afternoon.

The Super Weekend concept takes the events that had happened across two tracks — Lucas Oil Raceway (formerly Indianapolis Raceway Park) previously handled the support races — and consolidates them at one big oval. It also creates, for the first time, an event where the road course and oval will be used as part of the same weekend.

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