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Joseph Newgarden leads the NTT IndyCar Series field under the green flag to start the 2021 Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix at Belle Isle. (IndyCar Photo)

Detroit Grand Prix Organizers Share 2023 Vision

DETROIT, Mich. – The Detroit Grand Prix’s return to the streets of downtown Detroit in 2023 is expected to get the community more involved, while showcasing the area to a broader scale of race fans.

That is one of the primary goals for organizers of the Detroit Grand Prix as they shared more of their vision Tuesday.

The annual racing event that features the NTT IndyCar Series and IMSA has one more year at Belle Isle in 2022 before it returns to its roots on the streets of downtown Detroit the year after.

Organizers confirmed Tuesday a new era of the Detroit Grand Prix will begin June 2-4, 2023, when the event will bring a festival-like atmosphere to the Motor City.

The new home of the Grand Prix will feature three full days of activities on some of Detroit’s most popular and active downtown areas, including a new 1.7-mile,10-turn street circuit along Jefferson Avenue, Bates Street, Atwater Street, St. Antoine, Franklin Street and Rivard.

“We are very excited to bring the Grand Prix back to Downtown Detroit beginning in 2023,” said Bud Denker, chairman of the Detroit Grand Prix. “Bringing this annual international event back to the streets of Detroit will help our businesses downtown, will shine a light on our beautiful Riverfront with an inclusive summertime festival and it will open up new opportunities to engage and connect with our local neighborhoods and communities.”

The Grand Prix will provide unprecedented access to attendees with more than half of the event’s footprint along Jefferson Avenue and the Detroit Riverfront free of charge.

Visitors will have complimentary access to main fan activation areas at the event, including Spirit Plaza, Hart Plaza as well as the Riverwalk.

These fans will be welcomed in these key areas that feature live music, food, games and displays all weekend long without the purchase of a Grand Prix ticket.

The event will have minimal impact on regular traffic patterns and is expected to drive business instead.

A recent study conducted by the University of Michigan’s Sports Management department with the Center for Sports Venues and Real Estate Development revealed transitioning to downtown Detroit is expected to generate roughly $77 million, a 20 percent increase from a 2017 study.

The Grand Prix’s proposal to return to its original home was unanimously approved by Detroit City Council on Nov. 3.

Since September, Grand Prix organizers have met with more than 1,000 people throughout the city, gathering feedback and ideas from Detroit residents, business leaders, neighborhood groups, city officials, among other important figures.

Furthermore, the Grand Prix aims to engage with Detroit neighborhoods through outreach events.

Grand Prix will continue its local charity efforts as well. With the help of its partners, the Grand Prix has helped make more than $13.5 million in improvements to its current home on Belle Isle since 2007.

More than $5 million in additional funds have been raised for the Belle Isle Conservancy over the last six years through the annual Grand Prixmiere Gala hosted on race weekend. 

Denker announced Tuesday the first organization the event will contribute to annually is the Detroit Public Safety Foundation.

The foundation supports Detroit’s first responders and provides programs that make Detroit a safer place to inhabit.

“We appreciate all that Detroit’s first responders do every day to help keep our city safe,” said Denker. “We would not be able to bring the Grand Prix back downtown and host a world-class event in the Motor City without the help of the Detroit Police Department and the Detroit Fire Department and we feel it’s so important to support everything they do year-round through the important work of the Detroit Public Safety Foundation.”

NOTES

The Detroit Grand Prix began as a Formula 1 race on the streets of Motor City in 1982. 

Formula One raced annually in Detroit from 1982-88.

In 1989, the Detroit Grand Prix welcomed Championship Auto Racing Teams as its primary series and the first IndyCar races were hosted on the Detroit street circuit from 1989-91.

In 1992, the Grand Prix transitioned to Belle Isle with IndyCar races on the island annually through 2001.

After a six-year hiatus, the Grand Prix returned to Belle Isle thanks to the vision of Roger Penske and through the Downtown Detroit Partnership.

Following successful events in 2007 and ‘08, the Grand Prix went into a hiatus because of the national recession.

The event then returned in 2012 with support from General Motors and Chevrolet serving as the title sponsor. It lasted at Belle Isle through 2020, when COVID-19 pandemic conditions cancelled the event.

For more information on the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear visit www.DetroitGP.com.

Previous Grand Prix ticket-holders can currently renew their seats for next summer’s event while all tickets for the 2022 Grand Prix will go on sale in January.

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