The threesome - Indiana Motorsports Association Executive Director Tom Weisenbach, local auto and truck dealer Jeff Stoops and C&R Racing Inc. owner Chris Paulson - hope the new show will fill part of the void created when the sprawling Performance Racing Industry show outgrew the Indiana Convention Center and moved to Orlando in 2005.
Their new Indianapolis-based company, Performance Events Promotions LLC, will host the International Motorsports Industry Show on Dec. 2-3 next year at the convention center. Three convention center halls have been spoken for and Weisenbach hopes enough interest is generated to justify a fourth hall.
Attendance is projected at 7,500 to 10,000, with 450 exhibitors.
That would be a fraction of the nearly 40,000 who attended the final Performance Racing Industry show three years ago.
Still, Weisenbach said his market research shows a high degree of interest in a low-cost convention in the Midwest.
Exhibitors wanted the event to be in the winter so attendees would be more likely to stay in the exhibit hall than roam around the city. "You kind of keep their attention," he said.
Indianapolis is centrally located for a Midwestern show, Weisenbach added. And it's relatively cheap. Attendees can drive to town, stay in a hotel, spend more time at the show the following day and drive home.