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Aaron Nesmith treated to two-seater ride at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Nesmith suited up in an Arrow McLaren race suit, then rode in an IndyCar around the Grand Prix track at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Aaron Nesmith found himself in the arena of another sport Saturday morning. It is the offseason for the Pacers wing, but he suited up and strapped in to ride around the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway in a two-seater car.
The green flag will drop on the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix at 3:45 p.m. ET Saturday (airing NBC), but before then, IndyCar teams provided memorable rides around to sponsors and VIP guests.
Around 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, before the track was open to drivers for a practice session, Nesmith was welcomed to the track by driver Pato O’Ward and the Arrow McLaren team, which is based in Indianapolis.
The two got connected through the premium hydration beverage Electrolit.
Nesmith met up with O’Ward at Big Woods in Speedway, then got in a McLaren GT and rode around the surrounding area before entering track.
Once out of the car and on the asphalt, Nesmith was instructed about the experience, put on a black helmet and then buckled in behind the driver.
The 107th running of the Indianapolis 500 is two weeks away — scheduled for Sunday, May 28 — and those IndyCars will turn laps at over 230 mph. These special two-seater cars will go up to about 180 mph around the oval, but this two-seater ride was around the 14-turn, 2.439-mile track used for the Grand Prix.
Then after the ride, Nesmith took off his race suit, walked around the garages, got a tour from O’Ward and exchanged jerseys.
Nesmith got the full IMS experience.
Nesmith, 23, just completed his third season in the NBA and his first with the Pacers. He was acquired via trade with the Boston Celtics last July in a multi-player deal centered around the Celtics acquiring Malcolm Brogdon. He’s a native of Charleston and enjoys golfing in the offseason.
Nesmith started in 60 of 73 game played and averaged 10.1 points, 3.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game.
“I think Aaron took a big step,” veteran Buddy Hield said last month. “Being in Boston and not being able to play as much and then coming here into a starting role, just working his way up and proving himself. It’s hard being ahead of Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum in Boston. They’re elite guys and he had to wait his turn.”
Watch highlights from Nesmith’s experience below: