Titans stadium work prompts relocation of IndyCar season finale

Featured image credit: Tennessee Titans

Motor-racing series IndyCar is moving its season finale, the Music City Grand Prix, to a new venue in Nashville as work is set to begin on a new stadium for the NFL’s Tennessee Titans.

The race has been held on a street circuit in downtown Nashville since 2021 but it will take place at the Nashville Superspeedway this year. The event will take place on September 15 as originally scheduled.

The street circuit runs alongside Nissan Stadium, the current home of the Titans. The New Nissan Stadium will be built on the east side of the current stadium campus, along Nashville’s east bank of the Cumberland River.

The Music City Grand Prix’s title sponsor is Big Machine Label Group, whose chairman and founder Scott Borchetta is now overseeing operations for the race. Borchetta has spent the last several weeks reviewing organisation and plans for the event, and it was decided that the best path forward for this year’s race is to stage it at the Nashville Superspeedway.

The Nashville Superspeedway hosted the Music City Grand Prix from 2001 to 2008. The track, which is around 40 miles from the street circuit, also hosts NASCAR events.

Borchetta said: “With construction set to begin for the new Titans stadium, the Grand Prix operations team knew they’d be faced with new challenges, knowing that the course used for the first three years would have to change dramatically for 2024’s race.

“With several key locations around the stadium not available as in years past and with the proposed course change to run through the streets of downtown Nashville, (a big loop that utilises the Korean War Veterans Memorial Bridge, First Avenue, Broadway, Fourth Avenue and Korean Veterans Boulevard), we simply don’t have the proper space needed by the race teams nor the proper access for downtown businesses and residences to execute the world-class event that is expected by our amazing fans, IndyCar teams and sponsors.

“With the significant challenges of the proposed new layout and unknowns with the new stadium construction, which has been the centre of operations for the first three years of the Grand Prix, the decision has been made to move the 2024 race to the Nashville Superspeedway.”

Borchetta said the move has no bearing on the race’s “great relationship” with the Titans. Conversations will continue with the team and the City of Nashville to determine the right time to return to the street circuit.

Last month, the Titans detailed the complete Architecture and Engineering (A&E) team for the new $2.1bn (£1.67bn/€1.96bn) stadium, which will have a capacity of 60,000. The project team comprises 24 firms, including nine local businesses and 13 disadvantaged business enterprises.

Earlier in the month, the Titans granted a fresh look at the New Nissan Stadium after updated design details were approved.

Features of the stadium include a circular translucent roof, exterior porches with panoramic views of Nashville, improved sightlines for all spectators through a range of diverse seating experiences, and a 12,000 square foot community space available for use year-round.

The stadium is slated for completion in 2027, with a groundbreaking ceremony scheduled for February 29.