Monday, September 18, 2023

Honda Indy Toronto Receives Approval for 2024 Return

William Ashley Co Display with IndyCar at 2023 Honda Indy Toronto
Photo Credit: Chris Nagy/Car FYI Canada/XSL Speed Reporter 

On Friday September 15th, a vital meeting for the 2024 Honda Indy on the street of Toronto concluded in favour for welcoming back the headlining sounds of twin-turbocharged Honda and Chevrolet engines next summer. The Board of Governors of Exhibition Place decided to approve the application submitted by Green Savoree Toronto for a one-year license to extend the popular auto racing event. 

In the agreement, the 2024 event is tentatively slated to be held over four days starting July 18th and extends to July 21st. Billing itself as an event that generates $47 million for the economy of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), according to report from the Chief Executive Officer of Exhibition Place Don Boyle, the Honda Indy Toronto also supports more than 450 full time jobs in the GTA. The race weekend also contributes heavily to the hospitality industry of the city accounting for over 33,000 hotel room nights between the race teams as well as race spectators with 34 percent attending from outside Toronto. During the 2023 edition of the event, more than $100,000 was raised for Make-A-Wish Canada with the total after 12 years of the partnership cresting above $1 million.

A somewhat concerning detail about this recent application is the deal only covers a single year of the Honda Indy Toronto. The previous four times when negotiating with Exhibition Place, Green Savoree Toronto sought three-year extensions for the race event. It’s unclear why the decision was made to not pursue a multi-year agreement for 2024 and beyond. The reason for requesting a one-year agreement is unclear. Financial terms for the 2024 agreement are confidential.

Since its 1986 inception, the street race within Exhibition Place had been missed on only three occasions with two (2020 and 2021) caused as a result of the COVID-19 global pandemic. The 2008 event was not held as the Champ Car open wheel racing series planned to run at the venue entered unification with the Indy Racing League/IndyCar. Along with IndyCar being the headliner, a number of additional racing series support the race weekend in Toronto including the NASCAR Pinty’s Series as well as Sports Car Championship Canada in recent years. 

With the 2024 edition of the Honda Indy Toronto passing by its approval hurtle, the schedule for the upcoming NTT IndyCar Series is slowly taking shape. Though a complete 2024 season tour has not been announced by the open wheel organization there have already been several set. Already teased by IndyCar is a season finale on the streets of Nashville for September 15th as well as $1-million to win non-points event on March 24th at California’s Thermal Club. 

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