Indycar Hits the Track at Last

It is finally time for Indycar Racing.

Today’s schedule. All Times Central

7:30am: Gates Open

8:00am – 5:00pm: Surgere Fan Zone / Hagerty Car Corral

8:00am – 8:40am: USF2000 Race #1

8:55am – 9:35am: Porsche Sprint Challenge Race #1

10:00am – 10:45am: NTT INDYCAR SERIES Practice. All Times Central

11:10am – 12:00pm: Indy Pro 2000 Race #1

12:15pm – 1:15pm: Indy Lights Race #1

1:40pm – 2:25pm: NTT INDYCAR SERIES Practice

2:50pm – 3:35pm: Radical Cup Race #3

3:50pm – 4:30pm: USF2000 Race #2

4:55pm – 6:10pm: NTT INDYCAR SERIES Qualifying / Firestone Fast 6

Good morning from Barber Motorsports Park, Irondale AirBnB media center annex. Yesterday was a fun day, but today Indycar takes to the track for the first time in 2021 with two practices and qualifying. The Fast Six format was used rarely last season because most road courses hosted double headers. It will be nice to see it return. Some notes on Friday at Barber Motorsports Park.The crowd was the smallest I have ever seen here. It was a Friday and there are COVID concerns. It was eerie seeing so few people at this track which usually draws a decent number of fans on Friday. I wonder if the absence of Indycar on track kept people away.

Signs of the Pandemic Times

The trams are still running, to my surprise. There is one less stop, however. The stop at the entrance to the paddock is closed. There is a pull off for the tram which was blocked. Fans are encouraged to sit with their own party and distance, but no seats are off limits.

The signs reminding fans of the mask wearing requirement were ignored by many fans and sadly also by many of the track staff. There is a sign that says masks must be worn on the trams but staff allowed people on with no reminders.

The fan zone had fewer vendors than usual. We will see if more are present today. It was oddly quiet in an area that is normally filled with lots of activity.

On the Track

I liked having a day to watch the Road to Indy run their qualifying sessions. I normally pay mild attention to Indy Lights and not much attention at all to the IndyPro 2000 and USF2000, so I enjoyed learning more about who is in each series. The 30 minute qualifying sessions were intense. Some series track records fell and several teams locked out the front rows for their races.

I really enjoyed the Radical Cup. The cars look like mini prototypes and have three classes. They put on a great show with two good races. I hope to see them again at another Indycar event.

Photo from Radical Cup North America website

Spotter’s Guide Update

There is an interactive version of the Spotter’s Guide on the Indycar app.

Copy the link for the Interactive version:

Rain chances for today appear to be diminishing greatly. Qualifying will be dry. I will provide updates at The Pit Window on Facebook and on Twitter @PitWindowToo. There will be a qualifying/practice wrap up later tonight and a race preview story tomorrow morning.