Will Power passes Alex Tagliani in Turn 1 to take third place at the IZOD IndyCar Series race at the Edmonton Indy, July 22, 2012.
Credits: DAVID BLOOM/EDMONTON SUN/QMI AGENCY
EDMONTON -- After an eight-year run, officials are waving the red flag on the Edmonton Indy.
The popular race will not return to the City of Champions next year, a disappointed Mayor Stephen Mandel said Friday.
“This news is disappointing for the city and race fans,” he sais. “The 2012 Edmonton Indy was a great event both on and off the track.”
The shocking announcement, made late Friday afternoon, seemed to come out of left field for Edmonton race fans, but the city says they weren’t surprised.
“The race this year was good, but the profitability was just not there for Octane,” said Lorna Rosen, the city’s chief financial officer. “Race week fans are real race fans, so of course they’re disappointed to see it go.”
Octane Motorsports Events officially informed the city of their decision Friday and released a statement relinquishing the right to produce Edmonton’s Indy 2013.
“Despite our tight management policies and all our efforts to offer to the fans a world-class spectacle, we were not able to make this event profitable and nothing allows us to hope for a better profitability next year,” the statement says.
The city does not plan to seek another promoter to keep the race going.
“There is not an overabundance of race promoters in Canada,” Rosen said.
The first Edmonton Indy took place in 2005 under the former Champ Car series banner.
Since then, the city has invested $22 million, including the initial $3 million to build the Indy track.
The average Indy event brought around $80 million in economic stimulus for the city, but officials say the return just wasn’t enough to keep the race running.
“We gave it a tremendous effort over an eight-year run,” Rosen said. “I believe we gave it our absolute best effort.”
The city says there will be other big-ticket event options on the horizon for the city -- including a possible contract run with Cavalia, which has been selling out shows under a big top at the City Centre Airport since Sept. 12.