IRL's Detroit race shows growth

September 5, 2008
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belle2While the jury is still out on the success of the first unified open-wheel racing season, the organizers of the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix last weekend are calling their event a resounding success.

For the second straight year, the race weekend (Aug. 29-31) drew more than 100,000 spectators, event organizers said. This year’s attendance was a bit of an increase. A total of 69 corporate partners participated in the event as sponsors or chalet clients, up from 59 in 2007. The occupancy of the luxury chalets also was up, with 40 rentals this year compared to 36 in 2007.

The Indy Racing League can’t take all the credit. The Detroit weekend also featured an American LeMans Series race, and new for 2008 was the SCCA Speed World Challenge GT Championship. The number of teams racing rose from 43 last year to 76 this year. 

The Nielsen TV rating for the IRL race in Detroit, which aired on ABC, was .9, meaning 1.3 million viewers nationwide tuned in.

The IRL race at Chicagoland Speedway this Sunday will face a stiff test as the green flag drops the same time many National Football League teams kick-off their season. The IRL telecast on ABC begins at 3:30 p.m.
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  • Woohoo! The tv ratings 'grew' -10%. :lol:

    Should be funny to see how badly the big season-ending farce does on Sunday. Not only is the NFL on, as was mentioned, but Nascar's last race before the chase has been moved to Sunday as well.

    I can't think of a more deserving group of people to get crushed in this fashion than the vile, disgusting vermin that make up FTG's 'league'.

    It's absolutely astonishing that the 'league' went to Belle Isle, of all places, with absolutely no shame about their complete, total hypocrisy.

    Zak Brown will make it all better. Ha.
  • Why can't sportwriters do a little bit of research before repeating the numbers printed on a press release??? There's no way that there was 100K at the Detroit race weekend, which anyone who was at the track, watched the race, or at least looked at photos would easily be able to deduce themselves. Friday was a ghosttown, Saturday saw about 15K and I'll be generous and say 25K. Where did the extra 60K come from?
  • According to a map published by the track, the stands themselves seated just under 25,000 people.
  • Stan,

    Make your points. How about leaving the name calling alone. You are way over the top. You can't hide your bitterness as an ex-Champ Car minion. There are a lot of regrets, but all that name calling does no one any good, and many people that read these posts are sick of it.

    You need to get a new, positive focus in your life. Just a thought....
  • Berwickguy: What is with you? I mean, don't you see the problems eminating from 16th & Jonestown? Had you any real, relevant experience in racing, you would understand the damage done by Tony. Many folks out of jobs, TV ratings in the toilet, complete lack of passion by its participants, and an aging fan base disgruntled with the direction the sport has been heading. Empty seats, lack of sponsorship, foreign born ride buyers, street festivals, and foreign chassis? Is this what Anton promised you back in the early 90s? Japanese spec engines and the alienation of Chevy, Ford and Toyota? Rigged prize money, and pay to play ponzi MLM schemes that bleed the teams dry and make them dependent on the good will of Tonytown!

    How on earth can ANYONE defend what Mumbles has done to this once great sport?

    Good thing his pockets are deep, cause his thought processes are not.

    And before you blast me for not being Fan enough, please point out anything I have said that is not true!
  • crickets.....
  • Crickets...???? I just don't think anyone cares...
  • I don't think it is crickets, and I don't think it is people do not care about the IRL, it is that there are a few c>rt/owrs/ccws faithful who continue to spew their hatred for all thing IRL and TG on these boards. Sad, because this used to be a board for erious discussion, now it is just another site for the disllusioned carters to cry. You guys lost, several times. The c>rt model died repeatedly. Get over it. The IRL is seeing success. It is not just the IRL or the IBJ saying this. But I am sure you guys won't get it.
  • The irl* is seeing success...

    The Reversus TV contract is proof of that...

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