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Latest IRL News and Commentary

Indy 500 TV schedule
Month of May
May 6,  2005

ABC Sports, ESPN and ESPN2 will provide extensive live, Opening Day-to-Race Day coverage of the 89th Indianapolis 500.

ABC has broadcast the "500" since 1965, when it became part of ABC's "Wide World of Sports" series, and has covered the event live since 1986. It's the second-longest broadcast partnership in sports.

Television coverage of the Indianapolis 500 will include on-track action and a view of the many behind-the-scenes efforts from the famed Gasoline Alley garage area, as teams and drivers work to find the speed to first qualify and then challenge for a coveted Indy victory.

Live, nightly updates will air on "SportsCenter at the Indianapolis 500," from 6:30-7 p.m. (EDT) on ESPN2 with popular motorsports commentator Dr. Jerry Punch serving as host. Former Indy Racing League® IndyCar® Series driver Scott Goodyear will offer analysis, and Marlo Klain will report on the latest news from the garage area and pit lane. The "SportsCenter at the Indianapolis 500" shows start Monday, May 9.

ABC, ESPN and ESPN2 will team up to provide six hours of MBNA Pole Qualifying coverage Saturday, May 14, and ABC and ESPN2 will broadcast the drama of Bump Day qualifying for four hours on Sunday, May 22. ESPN2 will broadcast live from RubberQueen Second Day Qualifying on Sunday, May 15, and ESPN and ESPN2 will team up for two hours of coverage of Third Day Qualifying on Saturday, May 21.

Punch will serve as host for ESPN and ESPN2's coverage of qualifications. 2000 MBNA Pole winner and 1999 IndyCar Series champion Greg Ray, who started on the "500" front row for four consecutive years, will work alongside Punch as driver analyst, and Jamie Little and Vince Welch will serve as pit reporters. Todd Harris will play host to ABC's qualifying coverage, Goodyear will serve as analyst, and Jack Arute and Little will report from the pits.

The Futaba Freedom 100 Menards Infiniti Pro SeriesT race is now part of an exciting lineup of activities on Miller Lite Carb Day on Friday, May 27, and highlights of that race and final practice for the Indianapolis 500 starting field will be included with live ESPN2 coverage of the Checkers/Rally's Pit Stop Challenge from 2-4:30 p.m. that day.

ABC's live broadcast of the 89th Indianapolis 500 will begin with pre-race coverage at noon (EDT) May 29, followed by flag-to-flag coverage of the race at 1 p.m. The broadcast television talent for the 89th Indianapolis 500 includes: Brent Musburger, race broadcast host; Harris, play-by-play announcer; Goodyear, analyst; Arute, Little, Punch and Welch, pit reporters, and Penn Holderness, feature commentary.

ESPN Classic will contribute to the Indianapolis 500 fever with seven "500"-related programs from May 23-27. "SportsCentury" will profile six Indy veterans with 15 victories among them: A.J. Foyt, Al Unser, Rick Mears, Bill Vukovich, Mario Andretti and Tony Stewart.

ESPN Classic will also celebrate the 20th anniversary of Danny Sullivan's improbable "Spin and Win" victory with a feature on the 1985 Indianapolis 500.

Fans also will have the chance to get primed for the 2005 Indianapolis 500 with pre-race special, "Ready to Race: the 89th Indianapolis 500," on ESPN2 from 7:30-8 p.m. Saturday, May 28.

Following the 89th running of the "Greatest Spectacle in Racing," ESPN will broadcast a behind-the-scenes look at Danica Patrick's quest for success in her first Indianapolis 500 entitled "The Season: Danica Patrick's Race for the Indy 500" from 7:30-8:30 p.m. (EDT) on June 11.

89th INDIANAPOLIS 500 TELEVISION SCHEDULE
(All times EDT except where noted - Indianapolis local time is one hour behind)
(Schedule subject to change.)

Date
Program
Air Time
Network


May 9-13
SportsCenter at the Indianapolis 500
6:30-7 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

May 14
MBNA Pole Qualifying
1-4 p.m.
ESPN (live)

4-6 p.m.
ABC (live)

6-7 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

May 15
RubberQueen Second Day Qualifying
1-4 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

6-7 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

May 16-20
SportsCenter at the Indianapolis 500
6:30-7 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

May 21
Third Day Qualifying
5-6 p.m.
ESPN (live)

6-7 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

May 22
Bump Day Qualifying
1-3 p.m.
ABC (live)

5-7 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

May 23
SportsCentury: A.J. Foyt
4 p.m.
ESPN Classic

May 23-27
SportsCenter at the Indianapolis 500
6:30-7 p.m.
ESPN2 (live)

May 24
SportsCentury: Al Unser
4 p.m.
ESPN Classic

May 25
SportsCentury: Bill Vukovich
4 p.m.
ESPN Classic

May 26
1985 Indianapolis 500
1 p.m.
ESPN Classic

SportsCentury: Mario Andretti
4 p.m.
ESPN Classic

May 27
Miller Lite Carb Day Practice; Futaba
Freedom 100; Pit Stop Challenge
2-4:30 p.m.
ESPN2 (tape)

SportsCentury: Rick Mears
4 p.m.
ESPN Classic

SportsCentury: Tony Stewart
8 p.m.
ESPN Classic

May 28
500 Festival Parade
6-8 p.m.
ESPN2 (tape)

"Ready to Race: the 89th Indy 500"
7:30-8 p.m.
ESPN2 (tape)

May 29
Indianapolis 500 Pre-race
Noon-1 p.m.
ABC (live)

89th Indianapolis 500
1-4:30 p.m.
ABC (live)

May 31
Indianapolis 500 Celebration Banquet
8-10 p.m. (local time)
WISH-TV (Ch 8), Indianapolis

June 11
"The Season: Danica Patrick's Race for
the Indy 500"
7:30-8:30 p.m.
ESPN (tape)

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