Speedway, IN – The Verizon IndyCar Series officially announced the replacement on the 2016 schedule for the failed Boston event, and as rumored, the event will be held at Watkins Glen International on Labor Day weekend September 1st – 4th.
“There was great interest on our behalf [to return to Watkins Glen], we were thinking more about 2017 but obviously we’re a year ahead,” said Jay Frye, President of Competition and Operations for IndyCar. “We couldn’t be more pleased to be going back, it’s a great facility with great history.”
“I was really excited to hear from Jay,” said Michael Printup, President of Watkins Glen International. “In less than two weeks we put together a major motorsports deal. Both our teams are responsible for putting this together and we couldn’t be more proud. This belongs at Watkins Glen International.”
The last event that IndyCar ran at Watkins Glen International was in 2010. Since then the track has been repaved and received numerous safety improvements. The repaving of the 3.4 mile road course took place and cost “a little less than $11 million” according to Printup. “We took the track down, in some sections, all the way to dirt and started from the bottom up. The track is the same and drivers testing on it said ‘it was all the way back to where it is supposed to be, with a ton of grip’,” explained Printup. “From a safety point of view, we added more curbing, more catch fence and a runoff in every corner, all approved and passed the Formula 1 inspection two months ago.”
Scott Dixon, three time winner at the track, didn’t mask his excitement regarding a return to one of his most favorite tracks. “I’m definitely excited. We had a lot of success, quite a few podiums and three wins. I love these old school road courses that America has and Watkins Glen is at the top of the list.”
The race is a one year agreement. “Our goal is to continue these conversations,” said Printup.
A presenting sponsor has not yet been announced.
The 60 lap race will be broadcast on NBCSN and the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network, XM 209 and Sirius 212.