INDYCAR's footprint will expand to the Northeast in 2016 with the addition of a Verizon IndyCar Series race Sept. 4 in Boston -- Labor Day weekend -- in an agreement that extends to 2020.
The Grand Prix of Boston will feature an 11-turn, 2.25-mile temporary street course winding around the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center in the Seaport District. The event will mark the first time an Indy car race has been contested in the area. An Indy car race was held at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon from 1992-98 and in 2011.
“The level of enthusiasm we have received from the Boston community has been phenomenal and we look forward to showcasing the Verizon IndyCar Series on Labor Day weekend in 2016,” said Mark Miles, CEO of Hulman & Company, the parent of INDYCAR and Indianapolis Motor Speedway. “There has been a tremendous amount of work from community leaders and Grand Prix of Boston officials and those efforts led to this key addition to our 2016 calendar. We’re thankful to Boston Mayor Martin Walsh, Grand Prix of Boston CEO Mark Perrone and many other supporters who were instrumental.
"Establishing Indy car racing in the Northeast is an integral part of our strategy for growing our national fan base.”
This season, the Verizon IndyCar Series competes on street courses in St. Petersburg, Fla., Long Beach, Calif., Detroit and Toronto. Races on permanent road courses in New Orleans, Sonoma, Calif., Indianapolis, Birmingham, Ala., and Central Ohio (Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Mansfield) complement oval races at Indianapolis, Fort Worth, Texas, Milwaukee, Long Pond, Pa. (Pocono Raceway), Fontana, Calif., and Des Moines, Iowa, to make the Verizon IndyCar Series the most diverse in motorsports.
“This is an exciting time in Boston and as we explore new ways to grow and attract visitors here, we’re engaging in strong dialogue with organizations like the Grand Prix of Boston,” Mayor Walsh said. “This event has great potential to bring an influx of tourism and support our local businesses during what is traditionally a challenging holiday weekend for hospitality. I’m excited to begin this process and hear from our residents and business owners as we move forward.”
Mayor Walsh's office contacted INDYCAR last June, expressing interest in hosting a race as part of plans to attract high-profile events to the city.
“From the initial concept, and every step of the way, Mayor Walsh and his leadership have shown an incredible enthusiasm and openness in exploring this new concept, and we’re looking forward to continuing this engagement with the community,” Perrone said. "Boston is a destination, we have 23 million visitors a year here to see the history, the sights, visit and we'll be building events around the event.
"We also have quite a few universities and colleges in the area. We'll have 160,000 students moving in the weekend before and looking for something to do here in the city. We're building an event around the event to attract families, to attract students."
INDYCAR president of competition and operations Derrick Walker said there are "at least six passing spots" on the circuit. Two unique features, Walker said, will be parallel pit lanes and a section of the racetrack that runs under a hotel complex.
"I think you'll see a lot of great racing," Walker said.
Added 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series champion Will Power: "I think people are going to love watching these super-fast cars on the circuit. Street courses bring the action to the people. As a driver, I love going to new street courses because I usually win."
Click image below to download high-res course outline