Vote on Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course race may be near

Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

The parent organization of IndyCar could vote on having a second IndyCar Series race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway -- on the road course -- by the end of the month.

Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles is expecting a vote from the organization's board concerning a potential IndyCar Series race on the road course at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway before the end of the month, according to Michael Marot of the Associated Press.

If approved, the race would most likely open the traditional month of May, leading up to the Indianapolis 500.

The circuit was initially built for the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix of Indianapolis which was contested from 2000-2007 and has since been used for sports cars and motor cycles. IndyCar drivers Graham Rahal and Ryan Briscoe conducted a tire test earlier this month on various configurations and a race could be contested running either direction around the 2.6-mile course.

"Well... The traditionalist in me finds it incredibly odd," driver Ed Carpenter told SB Nation last week. "My trepidation is running it in May. But anytime you can run at that place is special. But it's just so odd having it at the beginning of May. I think it will give us more content over a month...

"There will be more racing and qualifying and that's good from a spectator's point of view."

Miles acknowledged that the Series has leads on a potential title sponsor and that driver feedback was "digested" in order to make potential changes to the layout. A $100 million improvement fund was granted to the speedway by the Indiana state government earlier this year and any upgrades would come from that pool of resources.

To help makes those decisions, the state also formed a motorsports commission appointed by Indiana Governor Mike Pence. Miles said he met with the commission for the first last week and that he expects two or three proposals to be made over the next month.

The report added that Miles would not discuss specific proposals but a previous interview has shown the executive to be a major proponent of improving seating and hospitality around the historic 2.5-mile oval.

The commission members are former IndyCar team owner Tom Kelley; Tim Clauson, an ex-race car driver and mechanic whose son Bryan started the 2012 Indy 500; Earl Goode, former chairman of Indiana Sports Corp. and a former aide to former Gov. Mitch Daniels; Ryan Kitchell, CEO of Indiana University Health and the state's former public finance director; and Chris Atkins, director of Indiana's Office of Management and Budget.

"There's a huge amount of work to be done," Miles said. "I think it will be about 30 days before we go back to them to approve significant investments in the track."

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