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DATE News (chronologically)
09/04/11
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Race fans loved Baltimore Grand Prix
The big crowd loved the race
Some fans attending the Baltimore Grand Prix on Sunday were already planning their trips back next year.

Whether they lived inside the city, or came from outside of the state, they were enjoying the event enough to say they'd come again.

"I'll be back next year," said Tom Liberta, of Doylestown, Pa., who came to the event for the entire weekend with his two sons, Thomas and Dominick. "There's some wrinkles they have to work out, but it's one of the few IndyCar races that are near enough."

Liberta said he'll spend close to $1,500 when his trip is done. He and his sons stayed at the Hilton Homewood Suites downtown.

Claudio Ferreiro, 52, and Brun Cerzosimo, 47, drove into the city from Gaithersburg Sunday morning. They spent $263.55 in all on tickets, and plan to spend around $100 together on food and drinks throughout the day.

Ferreiro said he's been to IndyCar races before and he wished there would be a jumbotron in front of every grandstand. But for a first-time race, he said it was worth it.

"I would come back," Ferreiro said. "In today's day and age, [a jumbotron] should be expected. It's kind of boring [without one]. But it's good. For a first year, it's good."

Many locals attending Sunday weren't race fans, but said they came to the event because the atmosphere was intriguing. In total, the event was expected to draw more than 100,000 fans, but race officials were mum on releasing figures as of Sunday.

Laura and Mike Lizbinski came up for the weekend from St. Mary's County. It was Mike's birthday and Laura used to work in the city, so they decided to make a weekend out of it. The Lizbinski's stayed near Arundel Mills at the Hampton Inn, and planned to spend around $500 or more, in all.

"We went shopping at the mall last night and might hit one of the restaurants out near Harbor East tonight," Laura said.

Kevin and Kim Linton, 43 and 42, and their friends Kim, Crystal and Courtney Wilson came down from northeast Baltimore for the day.

"We had a need for speed," said Kim Linton.

They weren't complaining about the traffic the event caused on Thursday or over the weekend.

"A lot of people complained," Kim Linton said. "But we have the light rail, cabs."

Azeem Sheikh, 19, and Calvin Kresse, 18, came out from Montgomery County. Kresse had an extra ticket, and though the two are NASCAR    NASCAR Latest from The Business Journals Kansas Speedway sets dates for 2012 NASCAR events Danica Patrick weighs in on Baltimore Grand Prix Topsy-turvy times for Wilson leaders Follow this company fans first, they couldn't pass up the opportunity.

"Just going to the paddock was really cool," Sheikh said. "The atmosphere, I'd say, is the best."  Baltimore Business Journal

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