Raceday temperatures at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway have soared towards the 100 degree Fahrenheit mark as the start of the ninth annual Brickyard 400 approaches forcing track officials to urge fans to drink plenty of water throughout the day.

A sell-out 200,000+ crowd is once again expected for the ninth running of the prestigious Brickyard 400 NASCAR Winston Cup race and this year's event is set to be one of the hottest on record.

With clear weather pictures all across Indiana and hardly any cloud cover, temperatures rose into the 90 degree range before midday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The 160-lap Brickyard 400 is scheduled to start shortly after 2:30pm local time.

At 1pm local time the IMS thermometer read 94 degrees and slowly rising and by the time the 43 starting cars hit the 2.5-mile quad oval, the racing asphalt will be well over 100 degrees as the early afternoon hours are traditionally the hardest on fans and drivers alike.

Track officials have been reminding the spectators through the track PA system to drink plenty of water, especially those in the uncovered areas, while memorandums have been sent through the press advising the same.

In the pitlane most of the drivers have been sheltering from the heat until the last possible moment and there has even been talk of one or two relief drivers being considered if the race turns out to be a particularly arduous.