July 22 (UPI) -- The Indianapolis Motor Speedway has announced the Aug. 23 Indianapolis 500 will be held with 25% fan capacity, with mandatory face coverings and ticket sales halted after Friday.
Track officials said June 26 the race would be held with a maximum of 50% capacity -- or 175,000 people. About 170,000 tickets had been sold at that time.
"In June, we announced the race was on and that attendance would be limited to no more than 50% of capacity," Penske Entertainment Corp. President & CEO Mark Miles said Tuesday. "We also made clear we intended to do things differently this year.
"By offering credits to fans who had previously purchased tickets, encouraging those over 65 to stay at home, limiting attendance in the infield, reducing tickets in our suites and promising fans their decision to not attend would not impact their seniority or right to renew tickets for 2021, we now anticipate attendance at approximately 25% of capacity.
"We will welcome fans back, and we have an aggressive plan in place, which has been developed through collaboration with national, state and local health experts."
The world's largest outdoor sports facility has 230,000 seats, but the infield raises the total capacity to about 400,000. Indianapolis Motor Speedway also has prepared a detailed plan of nearly 100 pages to provided additional guidelines and protocols for the Indianapolis 500. The plan will be released to the public on Wednesday.
Seat reassignments for greater social distancing, masks requirements and issuance, hand sanitizer distribution and temperature checks are among the precautions detailed in the plan.
"We look forward to welcoming fans back to the 500 in person," Miles said. "Our outdoor facility is mammoth, and with attendance of about 25%, it will certainly look different this year.
"We want to demonstrate that even under current circumstances, people can gather with carefully planned procedures in place so we don't have to go back to shutting down our country and our community."
The 2020 Indianapolis 500 had been scheduled for May 24 before it was postponed until August due to the coronavirus pandemic.