For the first time in a long time our Company has no official affiliation with the Honda Indy Toronto this year – and yet more than ever we want to encourage our readers to check out the race this year. Why?
As many of you know, the Indy has been a staple in Toronto’s summer event scene since 1986. In fact it was on their 10th anniversary that I went to the event – and was instantly transformed into a motorsport fan. Toronto and the region have changed immensely in the past 30 years. Everyone now has a myriad of choices in how they can spend their weekends, and it’s tough for established events to still resonate and capture the imagination of a population that has nearly tripled in size.
To add to this challenge, a scheduling conflict with the upcoming TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games forced the race to be moved to June from its traditional July date. Overall, I believe this is a far superior date for many reasons, but the logistics and marketing challenges it has presented are unimaginable.
However, this is not meant to be a post about why the Indy should be supported because it’s “tough out there.” Events, like magazines, newspapers and any other business should succeed or fail based on how good a product or service they provide.
This year, with the return to the traditional single Sunday race, the on-track IndyCar field, sadly without recovering Canadian driver James Hinchcliffe, will see some of the closest racing and best cars since that first race I saw in 1996. Last weekend’s Detroit races showed that the new aero-kits are finally starting to work for the Honda cars as well as the Chevrolets. While we won’t be able to cheer "the Mayor" on to the checkered flag, we can watch Canadians battle it out in the supporting IndyLights, Star Mazda and USF2000 series. Not to mention all the off-track activities which this year include the return of Molson-Coors and a full site-license so you can enjoy your Sunday watching the race on the lawn of Lakeshore boulevard with your favourite beverage.
It should not be forgotten, that over the years, the event has provided millions of dollars to the local economy, hundreds of local full time and temporary jobs as well as immeasurable exposure for the City of Toronto and the region. Ironically, it’s events like the Indy that showed Toronto is capable of hosting an event the size of TORONTO 2015.
For nearly thirty years, the Indy has signified that summer is finally here. While this year’s edition arrives a week before the official start of the season, it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity for motorsport and automotive fans to experience this great race without having to sacrifice a July weekend at the cottage and (hopefully) without the blistering heat so typical of July.
The Indy is an integral part of the motorsport community in Canada and if you haven’t been in a few years, don’t miss your chance to catch this event. General Admission tickets for the Sunday race are available for the extremely reasonable price of $25 today only (promotion ends today at 9:00pm EST) and there are many great places to view the race without a seat.
The Honda Indy Toronto is only here once a year so don’t be left without a ticket in.