The Andretti Green Promotions letter of intent for purchasing the rights to promote the Toronto Grand Prix expires today, and as you may have noticed this sale has not yet occurred. Reports indicate the race has been too much of a money loser and the prospective buyers want the city to lend a fiscal hand. Just how much of a loss and how much assistance vary depending on your source.
According to Sun Media, Andretti Green Promotions has discovered that the event has been running a $2-million deficit and before they sign off on the deal, they want someone to step in and cover that shortfall. – TSN
With the Toronto race losing in excess of $4-million a year, according to sources, a key issue is how much of the shortfall would be covered by Andretti Green and how much by the provincial government and Tourism Toronto, both with a financial stake in a three-day event that generates $50-million for the local economy. – Globe and Mail
However, the group is said to be concerned about a $2 million loss the event is said to have suffered in each of the past three or four years.
He (Toronto Councillor Joe Pantalone) wouldn't provide any figures on the value of cash and services the city has offered. However, an informed source said the city had been asked to contribute $500,000. – Toronto Star
This may be a stupid question, but if a longstanding race such as this is losing that much money then does it really need to happen? I mean, I feel for the Canadians out there who already feel smitten that without Paul Tracy their lone representative is Marty Roth (who by the way has a big fan in Jack Arute). It's just that racing is a business with the intent to make money, and if the tickets aren't selling then maybe it isn't meant to be.
UPDATE: The Globe & Mail reports the deadline "has been extended for a brief period, a source confirmed yesterday." I guess deadlines aren't as dead as they used to be.
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