Talking to the Indy Star, Mark Miles (CEO of Hulman & Co, the parent company to Indianapolis Motor Speedway) has put some doubt into the historic venue’s commitment to host the MotoGP Championship.
Having a contract to run the race through the 2014 season, Miles said that IMS might opt-out of the final year in its agreement with Dorna (IMS apparently has this option for a brief window after the 2013 Indianapolis GP).
“We’re going to make the most of the opportunity,” said Miles talking to the Indy Star. “Our mindset now is that we’re going to go through 2014, but we’re going to look at this year and evaluate it right after.”
However while the news has focused so far on IMS’s ability to opt-out, both Dorna and Indianapolis Motor Speedway have options in their contract to go through with the 2014 round, and with a bevy of variables in the air, we may or may not see three American GP rounds next year.
For Indy’s part, the issue likely comes down to simple dollars and cents (or is it sense?), as the Midwest track needs to have the MotoGP Championship make a profit when it comes into town, and its a poor businessman that runs a race that is going to lose the track money.
With 2013 seeing the first time that Austin has hosted the Grand Prix of the Americas, there too is an x-factor as to how much pull the Texan race will have on the attendance at Indianapolis — though Indy crowd draws mainly from the region.
Other factors include the Argentinian GP, which may or may not come to realization in 2014, and one cannot forget Carmelo Ezpeleta’s interview with Reuters, were he correctly expressed MotoGP’s need to diversify into other markets, but then dropped a bomb that the United States may only have two races going forward.
With each entity now firing some very public shots at each other in the press, it will be interesting to see how the situation resolves itself.
We imagine the largest puzzle piece for the 2014 round will be how the 2013 Indianapolis GP goes off for both parties. After all, both Dorna and IMS are racing to make a buck.