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Former Racer & Baltimore Grand Prix Organizer Michael Andretti Says Event Will Be A Success

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BALTIMORE (WJZ)– After a few false starts, a new group assumes control of the Baltimore Grand Prix. It includes one of the biggest names in racing.

Adam May talks to Micheal Andretti about the future of the race.

The new organizers just got the deal on Wednesday. They’re very confident this year’s race will be a huge success.

After many twists and turns with business agreements, the Baltimore Grand Prix is officially back on.

The city Board of Estimates approves a new deal with two groups: Race-On and Andretti Sports Marketing.

“We believe in the city for a long time. This is a world-class city that deserves a world-class event,” J.P. Grant, organizer of the Baltimore Grand Prix, said.

The new organizers are well aware last year’s race mangers went broke, failing to pay the city and numerous local contractors.

“We’re going to make sure we get everyone behind this thing. Instead of making it a hinderance to business, we’re making it help business,” Andretti, the organizer of the Baltimore Grand Prix, said.

The new five-year contract requires an upfront payment for city services, and guarantees admission and amusement tax payments.

May: “You said you believe Baltimore could be the second best Indy race after Indianapolis. Why?”
Andretti: “If you look at how huge it was last year, it was an amazing event and it was the first year.”

Last year’s inaugural race brought 160,000 spectators to downtown Baltimore and economic impact of almost $50 million, filling city and state coffers with almost $2 million each.

“Race fans and race drivers all thought it was the best circuit last year and we look forward to it being a success again this year,” Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said.

Andretti tells WJZ that although the deal is for five years, he thinks the race will be here at least 20 years.

The race will be held Labor Day weekend.

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