INDIANAPOLIS – The purse for the 105th Indianapolis 500 was up $1.3 million compared to last year, but it remains half of what the 2019 purse was pre-COVID-19 pandemic.
The total purse for this year’s race was $8,854,565, up from $7,502,500 in 2020. Before COVID-19 dramatically impacted last year’s schedule and forced the 104th Indianapolis 500 to be held without spectators, Indianapolis Motor Speedway owner Roger Penske had announced a purse in excess of $15 million.
This year, a crowd of at least 135,000 were allowed to attend, but practically all of those tickets had been purchased last year. The only new revenue came from concession, souvenir and sponsorship sales as well as television revenue.
It’s the second-straight year the purse was close to half of what it would have been normally.
If the pandemic subsides and the Indianapolis 500 is allowed to return to full capacity in 2022, that purse will likely increase. Penske said on Friday that more than 60,000 tickets had been purchased for next year’s Indianapolis 500.
Helio Castroneves, who scored his fourth Indianapolis 500 victory in thrilling fashion on Sunday, collected $1,828,305 for Meyer Shank Racing. Second-place driver Alex Palou of Chip Ganassi Racing earned $649,305.
Every driver in the field earned at least $100,305 for participating in this year’s Indianapolis 500.