How Far To Jefferson Speedway? [Expert Guide!]

It’s been a long time coming, but the day has finally arrived: the 2019 IndyCar season is upon us! Whether you’re a seasoned racing enthusiast or you’ve never been more than 10 miles from home in your life, now is the perfect time to jump onboard the #IndyCarPapaGraham race team and get your fill of speed and excitement.

The Reason For The Season

While the NBA, NHL, and MLS are back in action, the world of motorsport is only just beginning to settle down from its summer break. The IndyCar series in particular has some high-profile races lined up for the upcoming season – including the legendary Indianapolis 500! – and if you’re even remotely interested in motor racing, now is the perfect time to jump onboard.

The Schedule

The 2019 IndyCar season is being contested across North America, with most teams and drivers based in the states of Indiana and Ohio. The season kicks off in St. Petersburg, Florida on March 9 and continues until October 14 with the most glamorous event being the Indianapolis 500 which is being held on May 23.

Along with the iconic Indy 500, other big races this year include the season-opener in St. Petersburg, the Canadian Formula 1 Grand Prix, the Milwaukee IndyFest, and the Detroit Grand Prix! If you’re looking for a full calendar of events, you can find it on the IndyCar website. All of these events are exciting, but none more so than the Indianapolis 500.

The Teams & Drivers

There are 18 teams in the 2019 IndyCar series, each with a driver pairing. In 2018, the Indianapolis 500 had 28 entries – the highest number in over a decade – and there are plenty of reasons to expect more cars this year. IndyCar CEO Mark Miles said that he expects the “vast, vast majority” of teams to be entered in the race, and said that interest in the competition is “at an all-time high”. If you’re curious as to who will be driving for whom, the teams’ website has full race teams and driver bios.

The Scene

Although the summer months are upon us, the Indianapolis 500 is something of a winter event. While the snow might not quite have settled, the temperatures remain harsh and the racing quite competitive. In 2018, the temperature at Indianapolis was 45 degrees Fahrenheit, so if you’re not used to such extremes, it can feel like a big shock to the system. That said, if you’re a racing fan and you’ve been waiting for this day for your entire life, the shock will be more than worth it.

While some will argue that the Indianapolis 500 is purely a “spring” event and does not truly belong in the summer, it’s one of the earliest races of the season and frequently draws huge crowds. As well as being the crown jewel of the IndyCar season, the race is also the starting point for the annual Great Lakes Wine Festival – something that might also appease those who consider it to be a “winter” race.

The Weather

Speaking of temperatures and shocks to the system, the weather is another factor that can play a part in your experience at the Indy 500. As mentioned above, the temperature rarely gets above 45 degrees Fahrenheit at Indianapolis, so if it’s particularly hot where you are, bringing plenty of heavy clothing and sunscreen could be a good idea. However, if you’re coming from a cooler climate, you might find that the heat presents some challenges. Luckily for those who participate in extreme sports, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway has a weather-control system that ensures the inside of the track is always ice cold. Still, in the summertime, one must be prepared for the summer heat – even those who are used to it may experience dehydration and health problems due to excessive exposure to ultra-violet rays (which cause sunburnt skin and cancer). In short, the weather at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is always interesting, but it’s not always easy to play in.

Ultimately, it’s not the weather that’s the problem but your own willingness to put up with it. While some might argue that the Indy 500 is an “amateur” race and does not require much in the way of preparation, it’s a common misconception. First and foremost, this is a professional sport – and like any sport, there is a certain minimum level of professionalism required to participate (namely, having a license and insurance coverage). In addition, teams and drivers must abide by certain restrictions: for example, they are not permitted to have excessive sponsored messages or logos emblazoned on their cars and helmets.

What’s Next?

Now that you’re well-versed on the ins and outs of IndyCar, what’s next? Depending on your level of involvement, you can find a whole host of options to suit your needs. For those who want to get involved but don’t have the time to commit to full-time training, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved in amateur events such as the Indianapolis 500 or other comparable races. For those who want to get more serious about it, there are plenty of options for online degree completion and licensing opportunities for those who want to become a professional driver. Finally, for those who want to get extremely involved, there are also opportunities to get involved in grassroots activism and be part of the movement to create change in the sport.

With the right training and support, anyone can drive – even if it’s just around the block a couple of times a week. If you’ve ever thought about getting involved in motorsport, now is the perfect time to do so. With the right training and support, you’ll be able to jump in the drivers’ seat and hit the road to fame and fortune in no time!

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