Memorial Day weekend plays host to arguably, three of the biggest races on the motor racing calender. It all kicks off with the Formula One aces taking there shots on the tight and twisting street course in the Principality of Monaco. The men and women of Indianapolis then take center stage with “The Greatest Spectacle In Racing”, The Indianapolis 500 mile race. The night cap brings us to the hub of NASCAR where the season’s marathon race, the Coca Cola 600 goes into the wee hours of the night. In the past, many drivers have attempted to run both the Indy 500 and the Coca Cola 600 on the same day. But recently, no driver has made an attempt at the famous feat.
[media-credit id=22 align=”alignright” width=”225″][/media-credit]With so many current NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers with some form of open wheel experience, many race fans wonder why we haven’t seen the double. Drivers such as; Tony Stewart, Robby Gordon, A.J. Allmendinger, Kasey Kahne, Jeff Gordon, even Dale Earnhardt Jr and Jimmie Johnson are drivers that fans wonder why they haven’t done it. All of these men have said previously that they would love to take a swing at Indianapolis and Charlotte. But why haven’t they done it?
With all the pressure involved today driving in NASCAR, it isn’t likely that we will see a full time NASCAR driver do the double. With all the media and sponsor obligations that are required for a driver to just drive in NASCAR, it would be too much to juggle and be competitive in one, let alone both. The issue of travel also comes into play. Although Indy has moved their start time back to the original one, the driver attempting to get back to Charlotte would have a long night ahead of them as they would miss the drivers meeting and start in the back. And what if they said driver wins the Indy 500!? They would have to do all the photos and the traditional interviews that go with winning the race. It would just be too much to handle now days with how much more media attention and pressure is on each and every one of these drivers in both series.
Tony Stewart has been very add in saying that in order to do both things well, you need to be full time in both racing series. Seeing a driver that would run both the IZOD Indy Car Series and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series would be truly astonishing. But the chances of something like that happening are slimmer than a piece of paper. As much as race car drivers love to race anything they can get their hands on, there is no foreseeable way that one driver can run full time in two of the biggest racing series in the world.
Seeing drivers attempt to run two crown jewel races in the same day is a site that both fans and media members would love to see. It would make for a capitulating story of a man (or Danica) trying to accomplish the unthinkable dream of winning the Indianapolis 500 and then winning the marathon race in North America’s most popular racing series. But unfortunately, the dream of that story may have to wait for a driver with the right opportunity to do it. When that will happen, no one knows.