The IZOD IndyCar Series will not be returning to Alberta in 2013 and, possibly, not again in the near future after the promoter pulls the plug on the race.
The city of Edmonton announced that the promoter of the race informed IndyCar and the city that it would not stage the event in 2013. The event promoter cited poor attendance for the race in 2012 and lack of support from local businesses as the reasons for pulling the plug on the race. Octane Motorsports Events had put on the race the past two years.
“This year’s attendance was good, but we are also convinced that the event, especially with the quality of the spectacle offered, should have attracted many more spectators over its three days,” reads the released statement from Octane Motorsports.
The Montreal-based promoter also produces the Canadian Grand Prix Formula 1 race and a NASCAR Nationwide Series race at the Circuit Gille Villeneuve.
Edmonton mayor Stephen Mandel commented on the cancellation of the event in the released statement.
“This is disappointing for the city and race fans,” said the mayor in the statement posted on the city’s website. “We appreciate the contribution of all our partners in making the event a positive experience for both residents and visitors.”
The Edmonton race, first staged in 2005 when the series was known as Champ Car, was held at Edmonton City Centre Airport. In 2010, the event was cancelled when the city and the promoter could not reach an agreement regarding work needed to improve the temporary circuit.
A statement from IndyCar indicated the series had not placed the Edmonton race on its 2013 schedule. The 2013 calendar is scheduled to be released in early October.
“When we finalized our schedule for the upcoming 2013 season, it unfortunately did not include Edmonton,” said series CEO Randy Bernard, adding that the plan remains to have a minimum of 19 races next season. “We remain optimistic that we will return to having two races in Canada as early as 2014.
The IZOD IndyCar Series ran 15 races in 2012. The series had originally scheduled 16 races, but shortened the calendar when a race planned for August in China was cancelled in June.