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Apron project at Indianapolis delayed for one year

Jun 24, 2014, 5:45 PM EDT

IMS Pagoda Getty Images

Back in December, Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles revealed that the Indianapolis Motor Speedway was likely to re-install the track’s previous “apron” in order to spice up the action for its NASCAR events.

But now comes word that the apron project has been delayed for at least one year, with Curt Cavin of The Indianapolis Star reporting that NASCAR officials wanted more time to study the effects of changes made to the track.

The Nationwide and Sprint Cup Series will race at Indy on July 26 (NNS; Indiana 250) and 27 (Cup; Brickyard 400), respectively.

“They asked if we could postpone [the project] so they could test it,” IMS president Doug Boles told Cavin today. “We said, ‘That makes sense; we understand that.'”

Boles also noted Indianapolis’ rough winter, which delayed multiple other track projects over the off-season; since the area took longer to warm up, officials decided not to run the risk of having the track not be ready for 2015 Indianapolis 500 activities.

Speedway crews had planned to begin re-installing the apron following the conclusion of its vintage racing weekend in early June.

The apron has been targeted as a way to increase passing for the stock cars at Indy, which have not also produced a great show on the 2.5-mile rectangular oval. An apron has not been in place at Indy since the early ’90s, when a series of bad IndyCar crashes compelled the track to remove it.

However, as Cavin reports, the delay on this project should be just that as Boles says that track shareholders have approved the re-installation.

  1. manik56 - Jun 24, 2014 at 7:43 PM

    What will the apron add in theory? Seeme to me it would make for the same kind of race (which I actually enjoy by the way) just lower in the corner. What could be improved on are the Goodyears, but you could say that about any track.

    • indycarseries500 - Jun 24, 2014 at 11:47 PM

      That’s what I thought when I saw Doug Boles quote about the apron being banked 9 degrees, if they made it, say 6 degrees I think you may see something.

  2. chad4208 - Jun 24, 2014 at 10:27 PM

    supposedly more room in the corner to pass because of the rectangular nature of the track, passing in the corner is very hard and the “stock cars” don’t draft and sling shot like the indy cars do down the straights which is why they can pass and NASCAR can’t.

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