ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (WFLA) — Construction begins Monday on the racetrack that will wind through downtown St. Petersburg for the Firestone Grand Prix.
The 17th Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg will return April 23 to April 25.
Hundreds of crew members will spend the next 25 days building the track, which has 18,000 feet of steel-reinforced concrete block. Around 22,000 feet of chain-link spectator fencing will line the track, and more than 12,000 tires are used to build the track’s tire wall safety system and seven grandstands. It will take about two weeks for those devices to be dismantled and removed from teh area.
City council members voted 7-0, to allow 20,000 spectators to attend each day.
The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg traditionally kicks off the INDYCAR season. This year it will be the second race on the NTT INDYCAR SERIES after it was pushed back from the first weekend in March due to COVID-19.
The later date will allow more fans to attend.
Grandstand seating will be at limited capacity to allow for social distancing. Competitors, spectators and everyone else associated with the event will be subject to a health screening and temperature check before entering. All attendees will be required to wear masks or facial coverings at all times unless when eating or drinking. Those who don’t have one will be issued a mask at the entry gates. Hand sanitizer and handwashing stations will also be found across the venue.
“You can feel the vibe of the city all coming together and brewing, and it is always fun,” said IndyCar series champion Sébastien Bourdais, whose won 37 races. “There is a bit of anticipation but you kind of really get into it the week of for me.”
For more information, visit the Grand Prix’s website.