Organizer and promoter Indiana Sports Corp. helped USA Gymnastics break the attendance mark for its national championships event over the weekend, which concluded Sunday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
The P&G Gymnastics Championships—which crowned men’s and women’s national champions in the sport—drew 33,457 over four days. That’s a 16-percent increase over the record set last year in Pittsburgh and more than 30-percent increase over the 2013 event in Hartford, Connecticut.
This year’s event also represents a 35-percent increase over the 24,757 that attended the last time the event was in Indianapolis in 2005.
Visit Indy estimates the championships had a $7.6 million economic impact on the city.
The biggest day of this year’s event—by far—was Saturday women’s final, which drew 15,370 to the 18,165-seat arena.
With the strong attendance and more than 10 sponsorships, officials for the Indiana Sports Corp. and USA Gymnastics are confident they’ve brought in enough money to cover the event’s $1 million budget.
Prior to the event, ISC President Ryan Vaughn said his organization’s goal was to hit attendance of at least 30,000.
“There’s a strong affinity here for the Olympic movement,” said USA Gymnastics President Steve Penny. “USA Gymnastics is No. 1 in the world and has some of the biggest names in the Olympic movement. We’ve also had a great cooperative effort with the Indiana Sports Corp. and other groups to put this event on here.”
This year’s P&G Gymnastics Championship is a qualifier for the 2015 world championships for the men’s and women’s teams. It’s also a critical first step in making the 2016 Olympic team, Penny said.