Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has announced details of a proposed five-year agreement with Race On, a company contracted with Andretti Sports Marketing, that will run all commercial and operational aspects of the Grand Prix of Baltimore on Labor Day weekend 2012.
Following a public review period, the final contract will be presented to the Board of Estimates on May 16 for a vote.
As part of Race On's proposal, Andretti Sports Marketing will provide a "turn-key" solution to run the Grand Prix of Baltimore, including sponsorships, public relations, marketing, hospitality, ticket sales, track build, grandstand layout, and logistics.
The new Race On agreement guarantees payment for cost sharing City services, regardless of the number of tickets sold and safeguards admissions and amusement tax revenue in an escrow lock box. The city has terminated its agreement with Downforce Racing, which failed to meet city-imposed benchmarks contained in the previous motorsports agreement.
"The Grand Prix was a great event for Baltimore that boosted our local economy and showcased our city on the international stage," Mayor Rawlings-Blake said. "This has been a difficult process, but Race On and Andretti Sports Marketing have what it takes to move forward and make this world-class sporting event successful for Baltimore."
Race On, a minority-owned Maryland company is led by J.P. Grant of Grant Capital Management and Greg O'Neill of BMW Construction Specialists. Race On and Andretti Sports Marketing have the full support and approval of both IndyCar and American Le Mans Series to promote and execute the Grand Prix of Baltimore.
"We have assembled a great, world-class team that will ensure the Grand Prix of Baltimore is a success," Grant said. "I grew up in Baltimore. This event is great for the city I love and will become a new tradition Baltimoreans can be proud of for years to come."
Andretti Sports Marketing is leading the promotion of the Milwaukee IndyFest in June at the Milwaukee Mile.
"Our company has a history of resurrecting races in cities such as Toronto, Milwaukee and St. Petersburg, Fla., so we are confident we can do the same for the Grand Prix of Baltimore," said Michael Andretti, CEO of Andretti Sports Marketing. "By combining our decades of motorsports expertise with the substantial backing of local investors and community support, we believe the Grand Prix of Baltimore can become one of the most prominent sporting events on the Eastern Seaboard. We're thrilled to be working with Race On, J.P. Grant, Greg O'Neill and the city of Baltimore."
Information regarding tickets, website and other specifics will be released May 16, following approval of final contracts by the Baltimore Board of Estimates.