Could NASCAR’s Future In Montreal Be In Jeopardy?

While much of the attention this week has been focused on Lucas Oil Raceway losing its NASCAR race dates, another popular track on the Nationwide Series circuit may be in jeopardy. 

According to multiple reports, Stock-Car Montreal, a subsidiary of International Speedway Corp. which has organized the annual Nationwide Series race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, is facing a $1.6 million deficit and had requested $1 million in support – half from Ottawa and half from Quebec City. 

That request was denied on Wednesday, meaning NASCAR’s Aug. 20 race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve may be the final race at the speedway. 

The facility hosts two racing events each season, one of which is Formula One’s Canadian Grand Prix, with the other being occupied by NASCAR since 2007. 

June 30 marked the end of the exclusive negotiating period in which Stock-Car Montreal was trying to work with Jean Drapeau Park, home of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, to maintain NASCAR as the second date. That means after July 1 any racing series or promoter was able to negotiate with the facility about occupying the second race date. 

Although a number of things pointed toward an extension of the partnership  reports said promoter Francois Dumontier was unable to show the economic impact of the event would garner the investment needed from the local and provincial government. 

According to the Montreal Gazette, a spokesperson for the race organizers said he was “flabbergasted” that the requested investment had been denied. 

The spokesperson also said it was “the role of Montreal hotel and restaurant operators to provide firm statistics of income taxes collected for their goods and services charged to visitors” who attended the race since 2007.

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