Meyer Shank Racing Heads West for $1 Million Challenge at The Thermal Club

SPY+ Optic Rejoins Mike Marsal Racing for 2024 Season
March 16, 2024
Mixed results for Racing to End Alzheimer’s at Sebring
March 18, 2024
Show all

Meyer Shank Racing Heads West for $1 Million Challenge at The Thermal Club

#60: Felix Rosenqvist, Meyer Shank Racing Honda

Pataskala, Ohio (18 March 2024) – Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) got the start that it needed in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES season-opener in St. Petersburg, coming out the weekend with results that were some of the best finishes for the team in nearly two years.

Now, the team enters a special INDYCAR race weekend at The Thermal Club which has $1 million on the line for the unique made-for-TV event (March 24, 12:30pm ET, NBC, SiriusXM Ch. 218).

Felix Rosenqvist (No. 60 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda) announced his presence with authority in St. Petersburg, storming to a front-row starting spot and taking the Bon Jovi-themed car to a seventh-place finish on the St. Pete street course.

Rosenqvist’s MSR stablemate Tom Blomqvist (No. 66 AutoNation / Arctic Wolf Honda) had an equally promising start to his season, finishing on the lead lap in just his fourth INDYCAR start and setting a career high with a 17th-place result.

While the Ohio-based squad will continue its quest to climb to the sharp end of the grid this week, the stakes will change a bit. Instead of chasing championship points, this weekend’s The Thermal Club $1 Million Challenge features a battle for fortune and glory, with over $1 million on the line and $500,000 going to the All-start race winner. The purse is the largest in INDYCAR SERIES history outside of the Indianapolis 500.

In what will be the first non-points event for the full field of INDYCAR drivers since 2008, this weekend’s event at the 17-turn, 3.067-mile Twin Palms layout at the Thermal Club features an exciting format that culminates in a 12-car, 20-lap shootout.

Rosenqvist – who will again be carrying the Bon Jovi Radio (SiriusXM Ch. 312) colors on his MSR machine – and Blomqvist will have four practice sessions on the new circuit leading into Saturday’s qualifying, which will set the field for a pair of heat races to take place on Sunday. These heat races will be contested over 10 laps, or 20 minutes, with the first six finishers from each heat moving on to the All-Star feature race. This will be the first time that the series will use heat races since 2013’s Iowa Corn Indy 250.

Sunday’s finale will consist of two 10-lap segments, with teams allowed to refuel and make any changes they would like to their cars during the break between segments. The winner of the second segment will take home $500,000 with $350,000 going to the runner-up and $250,000 to the third-place driver.

The Thermal Club $1 Million Challenge will air on NBC on Sunday starting at 12:30 p.m. ET. Saturday’s qualifying will be shown live on Peacock beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET. SiriusXM will also host live IndyCar Radio coverage of both sessions on XM Ch. 218.


Meyer Shank Racing Driver Quotes:
Felix Rosenqvist: “It will be really interesting to race at Thermal for the first time. We of course had the opportunity to test at Thermal last year, so it’s nice going into the weekend with some sort of familiarity, but racing at the track will be interesting. This will be a bit of an experimental weekend where there is less on the line in terms of points, but a million dollars on the line, which is crazy! The weekend format is also new, so it will mean that the one who figures out everything the quickest will probably walk away with the cash! Lets bring it on.”

Tom Blomqvist: “I’m pumped for this event. It’s so unique and when you’re racing for cash, it makes it all the more exhilarating. The facility looks fantastic and I’m super excited to check it out for the first time. The track looks super cool, and super technical. Unfortunately I haven’t been there before, so I’ll be leaning on Felix and Helio with their experience testing at Thermal last year. Kudos to INDYCAR for making his event come to life.”