After a delay of almost four months amid the coronavirus pandemic, the NTT IndyCar Series will finally be able to begin its 2020 season tonight. And IndyCar’s modified 2020 schedule will start with a prime-time race on a TV channel that will allow for maximum viewership at a track that tends to produce exciting racing.
It was not intended to be the first race of the season, but the Genesys 300 at Texas Motor Speedway will run Saturday night on its originally scheduled date — albeit without fans in attendance. The start time for Saturday’s race at Texas is 8 p.m. ET, and it will broadcast live on cable network NBC.
This will be the 24th consecutive year in which IndyCar has raced at the 1.5-mile oval in Fort Worth, Texas, but it’s the first time the race has served as the series-opener. As for the TV channel, the race has moved to NBC from its originally scheduled window on NBCSN, marking the first IndyCar race on broadcast TV in prime time since 2013.
“America needs live sports, and they are not going to believe what they see when the Genesys 300 storms into their living rooms on TV from Texas,” said Eddie Gossage, president and general manager of Texas Motor Speedway. “One of the world’s greatest sporting events, the Indy 500, has been postponed until August by coronavirus, so all of that pent-up energy, anticipation, frustrations and anxiety will be pounding through the drivers’ nervous systems. Typically, the Genesys 300 results in a 220-mph photo finish.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, IndyCar will run a condensed schedule at Texas with practice, qualifying and the race all taking place on the same day. To accommodate the schedule, the length for the race at Texas has been adjusted to 200 laps rather than the previously announced 248 laps.
Below is how to watch Saturday’s IndyCar race at Texas, including the TV channel and live stream options.
What channel is the IndyCar race on today?
Though the race itself will broadcast live on cable network NBC starting at 8 p.m. ET, the practice (1 p.m. ET) and qualifying (5 p.m. ET) sessions earlier in the day will be shown on NBC Sports Gold and NBCSN, respectively.
Of the 14 races on IndyCar’s modified schedule for 2020, eight are expected to be shown on NBC, with the others scheduled to broadcast on NBCSN.
Below are the top 40 TV markets in the Unites States and the local NBC affiliate for each.
NBC Sports’ lead IndyCar broadcast team of Leigh Diffey (play-by-play), Townsend Bell (analyst) and Paul Tracy (analyst) will call Saturday night’s race at Texas.
What time does the IndyCar race start today?
While Saturday’s IndyCar race doesn’t start until 8 p.m. ET, there will be two live presentations of on-track action earlier in the day. A two-hour practice session, which can be streamed live on NBC Sports Gold, is scheduled to start at 1 p.m. ET. A couple hours later, a one-hour qualifying session will start at 5 p.m. ET. Qualifying will air live on NBCSN.
In addition, NBCSN will broadcast the pre-race show for tonight’s race starting at 7:30 p.m. ET. The network also will carry the post-race show at the Genesys 300’s conclusion.
Below is the complete TV schedule for Saturday’s IndyCar events at Texas.
IndyCar live stream for Texas race
For those who don’t have a cable or satellite subscription, there are five major OTT TV streaming options that carry NBC — Sling, Hulu, YouTubeTV, fuboTV and AT&T Now. Of the five, Hulu, YouTubeTV and fuboTV offer free trial options.
Below are links to each.
For those who do have a cable or satellite subscription but are not in front of a TV, IndyCar races in 2020 can be streamed live via phones, tablets and other devices on NBCSports.com and on the NBC Sports app with authentication.
All 2020 IndyCar races and practice/qualifying sessions also can be streamed live on NBC Sports Gold’s IndyCar Pass for $54.99 a year.
IndyCar schedule 2020
The updated IndyCar schedule for 2020 was released May 21 with the previously announced season-opener set for June 6 at Texas Motor Speedway.
Below is the complete schedule (TV info via NBC Sports):
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