For the Texas return, IndyCar does not want to be “locked into only one option”
As the IndyCar Series looks toward its 2025 season, a return to Texas remains a topic of strategic consideration, but with an open-minded approach to potential venues.
A Change of Course
The Texas Motor Speedway (TMS), a mainstay on the IndyCar circuit since 1997, was notably absent from the 2024 schedule. This decision, resulting from unresolved scheduling conflicts, has opened the door for the series to reevaluate its options in Texas for 2025.
Despite the longstanding relationship with TMS, Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles emphasized the importance of not being “locked into only one option” for the series’ return to Texas.
The Importance of Texas
Texas holds a significant place in IndyCar, not just for its historical value but also for its market potential. Home to NTT Data, the title sponsor of the IndyCar Series, Texas’ importance extends beyond just racing tracks to business and fan engagement considerations.
Alternative Venues on the Table
While TMS remains a viable option, IndyCar is exploring other possibilities, including the Circuit of The Americas (COTA) in Austin, known for hosting Spring Training in 2019 and 2020. The idea of creating a street circuit, akin to the series’ approach in Nashville, is also on the horizon.
San Antonio had been a consideration in the past, and the possibility of a race around AT&T Stadium in Arlington has been discussed, though momentum for this idea seems to have waned.
Balancing Tradition and Innovation
The decision to explore new venues reflects IndyCar’s commitment to balancing tradition with innovation. While TMS has been a fixture in the series, shifting dynamics in fan engagement and market strategies necessitate a fresh approach.
A new venue could invigorate the series, tapping into the large Hispanic audience in Texas, crucial for the popularity of drivers like Arrow McLaren’s Pato O’Ward.
IndyCar’s potential return to Texas in 2025 underscores a strategic shift in the series. While respecting its historical ties to TMS, IndyCar is keeping its options open, ensuring the series remains dynamic and responsive to changing market demands and fan interests.
As 2025 approaches, the anticipation for IndyCar’s next move in Texas continues to grow, signaling exciting times ahead for the series and its fans.