Hall Of Famer
|Joined: ||Mon Oct 22nd, 2007|
|Location: || |
|The staging of the Indianapolis 500 requires racers, crew members, support staff, IndyCar officials and staff, and Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials and staff, and media members numbering in the hundreds and probably topping 1,000, all in a relatively confined space on Gasoline Alley, the front stretch with the pits, and the press box over the course of several days, even if qualifying was altered and shortened due to the extraordinary circumstances.
That aside, this race announces attendance in the 300,000 to 350,000 plus range. If the race occurs in front of empty stands, that means there is no ticket revenue, no concession revenue, no camping permit revenue for the infield, no parking revenue. Millions of dollars would be thrown away by IndyCar at a time when many of the other races on the circuit struggle and this is by far and away its biggest money making race.
By moving the race date back to late August, it will be held almost as late as it can go without crashing into NFL and college football season and create the most likely chance to run the race in 2020. The Memorial Day weekend race isn't happening. Going to earlier in the summer could still result in the race being in jeopardy, depending on how this goes. They can't reschedule the race twice and have attendance and other logistics matters absorb the need to change plans on less notice than exists now. If the race must happen in front of empty stands, at least the best effort has been made to ensure it takes place in front of the fans.