When Verizon IndyCar Series fans tune in tonight to the Indianapolis Colts-Pittsburgh Steelers game on NBC, they will see a familiar sight but with new branding.
An INDYCAR Experience two-seat Indy car, wrapped in a “Sunday Night Football” design, will be a part of the historic Thanksgiving Night broadcast from Indianapolis, with an expected audience of up to 20 million viewers. Making the two-seater and the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speedway part of the broadcast was a must, according to Josh Veltrie, electronic newsgathering producer for NBC Sports, which is also a partner for Verizon IndyCar Series telecasts.
“It’s a staple of Indianapolis,” said Veltrie. “It’s what everyone thinks of. When you think of Indy, you obviously think of the Indy 500 and it also helps a lot that the ‘Sunday Night Football’ branding is on one of the Indy cars and it looks awesome.”
An NBC video crew captured the two-seater turning laps around the IMS oval Wednesday and parked on its start-finish line, the famous yard of bricks. The crew also recorded the car moving slowly – in traffic around downtown’s Monument Circle and driving into Lucas Oil Stadium, where tonight’s game is being played.
The Indy car is part of a historic night in Colts history: It is the first NFL Thanksgiving game in Indianapolis, with the Colts taking on the Steelers at 8:30 p.m. ET. The game will be broadcast nationally on NBC. At halftime, the Colts will host a Hall of Fame ring ceremony honoring former coach Tony Dungy and retired player Marvin Harrison, who were both enshrined in the hall this year.
When in Indianapolis, there’s only one way to arrive at the stadium. Thanks @IndyCar! #PITvsIND pic.twitter.com/4MRCVDVP7q