SBD/April 4, 2014/Leagues and Governing Bodies

IndyCar, IMS Project 20-25% Increases In Ticket And Sponsorship Sales In '14

IndyCar's deal with Verizon added another significant bump to Hulman revenue
Verizon IndyCar Series and Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials are projecting 20-25% "increases in ticket and sponsorship sales this year over last," according to Anthony Schoettle of the INDIANAPOLIS BUSINESS JOURNAL. Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles said that "expanded activities during May at the IMS will be a major driver for much of the growth." For the "first time, May at the Brickyard will start with an IndyCar road race," and that Indianapolis 500 will have a "new qualifying format." Country singer Jason Aldean also will give a concert the night before the 500. Meanwhile, IndyCar's new title sponsorship deal with Verizon "added another significant bump to Hulman revenue." IndyCar officials said that another "major sponsorship is being finalized this month and should further bolster the fortunes of the series, which hasn’t made a profit since its formation" in '96. Sources said that Miles and his staff are in "serious discussions about a title sponsorship deal for the inaugural road race, Grand Prix of Indianapolis" (IBJ.com, 4/2).

GOING INTO THE GARAGE: Thursday's edition of CBS' "Late Show" featured show intern Todd appearing on-stage to discuss his appearance at the Verizon IndyCar Series Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg last weekend. Host David Letterman said to Todd, "You represent the best of what our internship offers and what we attract as young men and women. How long have you been with the 'Late Show' as an intern?" Todd replied, "I've been interning since 2009." Letterman asked Todd, "Do you know anything about automobile racing?” Todd: “I do now.” The broadcast aired a taped report from Todd who asked Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing driver Graham Rahal about the team's new sponsor, the National Guard, of which Todd said he was "thinking about joining." Rahal: “I think you have to beef up a little.” Todd asked team co-owner Bobby Rahal, “Do you think that I can ever be an IndyCar driver?” Bobby Rahal replied, “Are you old enough to drive?” (“Late Show,” CBS, 4/3).
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