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.

Source: Indy Star; Photo: © 2012 Jules Cisek / Popmonkey – All Rights Reserved

  • Starmag

    Indy is rightfully proud of it’s auto racing history. Too bad that doesn’t really transfer to motorcycles. Most of the riders don’t like the track. I wouldn’t lose sleep if they opted out. A better choice for motorcycle racing ( and scenery) would be Miller, Barber, or Road America.

  • Of the circuits you listed, only one is FIM homologated, and it’s too close to Laguna Seca geographically.

  • G.Irish

    Dorna may find itself in for a rude awakening if they get rid of Indy in favor of COTA. I suspect COTA is going to see a rather precipitous decline in attendance for next season after some of their reputed shortcomings this year. I could be wrong, but they [COTA] don’t seem like the type of crew that will quickly correct what didn’t go well this year. That could mean low crowds in 2014 and 2015. Then the next question will be how long will they continue with an event at COTA with low attendance. COTA is not like Qatar where they don’t care if no one shows up.

    We may well end up right back to only having one GP in the US. I suppose that’s better than nothing.

  • Bruce Scholten

    COTA might assure more MotoGP spectators if Kevin Schwantz appeared as honorary marshall.

  • Starmag

    Well, if Miller is too close to Laguna Seca, that’s a shame. The scenery is spectacular. Since I’m guessing Road America doesn’t meet FIM spec, that leaves Barber. Mr. Barber built it specifically to FIM spec. I did a search and couldn’t find anything other than that. Do you know anything about why it isn’t homologated by the FIM yet?

  • Damo

    I love that we have three events here in the US, but I imagine Dorna may chop it to two.

    I wouldn’t blame them, Indy hasn’t been creating very good these past few seasons and has produced some scary moments for many of the riders.

  • JoeD

    Indy is four wheel territory. Many other venues around with better surroundings and flowing layouts. American racing seems to be about 10 years behind the world. Blasphemy alert-I do not care for Daytona, either.

  • John D’Orazio

    I’ve attended every GP at Indy and three at Laguna. Without a doubt, the folks at Indy know how to stage an event. Parking and track access are unsurpassed. But, even though Laguna is a smaller track, it just feels more like a special event. Vendor support is amazing and there is a total party atmosphere. That feeling, at least for me, just is not present at Indy. Every year, the event seems to get a little skinnier.

  • John D’Orazio

    P.S. Barber is beautiful, but simply too small.

  • Chaz Michael Michaels

    Just don’t lose Laguna Seca. Laguna Seca does everything right.

    Indy…open wheel oval track with a course frankensteined into it in a ham-fisted fashion. I think it works about as well as Daytona.

    COTA can be great. I had a fun time despite the boneheads who run that venue. I don’t know who “the deciders” are at COTA but clearly they “misremembered” a lot of the things that go into putting on a great GP.

  • The event @ Indy is fine track views are so so (ovals aren’t the best spectator tracks) but outside of the track Indy is pretty lame. Making a trip just to see the race really isn’t worth it to some one like me I want a destination . Felt the same way about WSBK @ Miller great track but absolutely nothin to do once the race is over.

  • Gonzo

    Well, Indy is not seeing any of my money. Why. Simple, I don’t enjoy being harassed by the cops just for being on a bike. Then I read about the journalist at the IndyGP two years ago who had guns pulled on him because he made an illegal left turn on his bike(the signal wasn’t tripping for him) and all the youtube videos of Indy police ramming bikes with squadcars at some gathering last year, even hitting people who had nothing to do with the gathering, so…Indy can rot away in economic hell for all I care. And COTA? Well, that has a few strikes against it also. One, it’s in that Sh**hole state, Texas. Two, after the way they AND Dorna screwed Schwantz, they don’t deserve ANYONE’S money.

  • Variable


    The entire state of Texas is a “Sh**hole”? The whole place? Yeah, your argument is reasonable.


    Texas is that “Sh**hole” state? What paradise do you live in, Gonzo? For everyone else: Indy is simply not a good track for spectators. They should never have had MotoGP there to begin with. I have been to the races at Laguna Seca and it just works. Let’s give COTA another year or two before we pass judgment on them.