The Triple Crown is a popular concept in motorsport: win three certain races, earn bragging rights and occasionally a monetary prize. In the case of the NTT IndyCar Series, such an idea was used during the 1970s and 1980s, followed by 2013 to 2015, for winning major rounds like the Indianapolis 500.
For 2022, IndyCar has revived the triple but in a much different manner; this time, the crown is attained based on versatility. On Thursday, IndyCar announced the formation of the PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge, a partnership between the sanctioning body and industrial staffing company PeopleReady, in which the first driver to win a race on each of the schedule’s three track types—oval, road course, street circuit—can win $1 million for themselves and a charity of their choosing: $500,000 is shared between the driver and their team, while the other half goes to charity.
The 2022 calendar has four ovals—Texas Motor Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Iowa Speedway, and World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway—compared to six road courses and five street circuits. While the latter two categories greatly outweigh the ovals, the likelihood of a driver winning at least once on each of the three is actually higher than one might think. Such a feat has been accomplished every year since 2015 save for 2021, though Josef Newgarden came close with wins on an oval (Gateway) and road course (Mid-Ohio) and three second-place finishes on the streets in St. Petersburg, Detroit, and Long Beach. Had the challenge existed in years past, Newgarden would have achieved this in 2017 and 2020.
Even if nobody completes the sweep, PeopleReady intends to donate $10,000 to each race winner regardless of their progress in the challenge.
“The PeopleReady Force for Good Challenge will help drive home PeopleReady’s mission to connect people and work as a force for good in the communities they serve while highlighting the skill of NTT IndyCar Series teams and drivers and our collective commitment to helping others,” said Penske Entertainment Corporation head Mark Miles. “This programme will keep fans engaged all season and continue to raise vital awareness for a variety of worthy charities.”