IndyCar eyeing Providence Rhode Island race UPDATE #4 This rumor is downgraded to 'false today. IndyCar racing isn't coming to the streets of Providence — at least not next year. The 2013 schedule of races, released Sunday, does not include the capital city.
Mayor Angel Taveras, who visited a race in Baltimore last month, has been pushing for Providence to host the event one day.
IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard praised Providence's enthusiasm for hosting the event but said it's a monumental task and that the city couldn't meet all the deadlines.
Jim Bennett, the city's economic development director and chairman of the state's Convention Center Authority, has said a Providence Grand Prix race would boost the area's economy and help promote Providence as a tourist destination. 09/15/12 This rumor is upgraded to 'strong' today. At Fontana IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard all but confirmed that Pocono (Pa.) Raceway and a street race in Providence, R.I., will be on the 2013 schedule to be announced by Oct. 1.
09/13/12 The proposed race would be held August 9-11 and the Providence date would fall a week after” the race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
09/10/12 The race would take place on a 2.1-mile temporary street circuit that runs by Brown University, past the state capitol and over the canal. There's a reasonable amount of elevation and it's right in the heart of the city. The project has been in the works for the past six months, NZR Consulting President Tony Cotman told Racer.com.
“Initially, a potential site was looked at in Boston but as we progressed it was apparent interest was extremely high just down the road in Providence,” Cotman said. “Governor Lincoln Chafee, Mayor Angel Taveras and Jim Bennett (Director of Economic Development) have been instrumental in leading a fantastic and supportive team which includes involvement from the R.I. Convention Center and the Dunkin Donuts Center.
“The promoter group will be known as the New England Grand Prix LLC,” he added. “It includes some folks who are very familiar with IndyCar and some that are new to it. It's important to us to blend and involve the local market as much as possible. It's also important we have someone experienced when it comes to IndyCar events.
(WPRI) - Federal Hill, start your engines?
|IndyCar back to New England in Providence, Rhode Island?|
City officials led by Providence Mayor Angel Taveras have spent the past few months trying to lure IndyCar to Rhode Island's capital city after learning the organization is considering bringing a Grand Prix race to New England. Taveras attended a race in Baltimore last Saturday as part of the effort.
"I'm hopeful something will come of it," Taveras told WPRI.com on Thursday. He said the race would be an economic boon to the city by bringing more business to local hotels and restaurants, and said the effort is part of a broader push by Providence to bring more tourism into the capital.
Taveras and Jim Bennett, his economic development director and chairman of the R.I. Convention Center Authority, are still tight-lipped about where the effort stands - or where the route would go - but they expressed cautious optimism.
"Ultimately, the decision to bring a race to the region rests with IndyCar," Bennett told WPRI.com. "Providence is putting its best foot forward to bring the race here while protecting residents and taxpayers from bearing any financial risk."
|Cars would race past City Hall|
IndyCar is the trade name of Indianapolis-based Indy Racing League LLC, which administers various open-wheel auto races including the famed Indianapolis 500. Its parent company is privately held Hulman & Co. of Terre Haute, Ind.
"The Grand Prix would have an incredible economic impact and would help market Providence to the world," Bennett said. "My office will continue to work with IndyCar and we are hopeful that they'll make the decision to bring their series to New England." WPVI.com (Click link to see video news report)