Ticket demands for IndyCar’s return to Portland International Raceway have skyrocketed during their first week of sales.
According to event promotor Green Savoree Racing Promotions – and numerous fans who’ve reported large blocks of prime seating have been sold while trying to secure their tickets – reception to the Aug. 31-Sept. 2 Grand Prix of Portland has surpassed internal projections.
“The Grand Prix of Portland launched advance three-day tickets and passes, plus the RV Club, on Monday, and so far sales have exceeded our team’s expectations,” Jerry Jensen, general manager of Grand Prix of Portland, told RACER. “RV spaces sold out within hours of going on sale, and we’re looking at adding additional spaces to accommodate fans who are on the waiting list.”
More than a decade has passed since Indy cars visited the Pacific Northwest. Once a staple on the sporting calendar, the CART IndyCar Series and its successor, the Champ Car World Series, made annual stops at Portland dating back to the 1980s and on most occasions, a large fan base turned out to watch the open-wheel cars and stars.
With a long gap since the last Champ Car race was held in Portland back in 2007 (pictured), concerns were held as to whether new and former fans would show an interest in the Verizon IndyCar Series and its Labor Day weekend event. Based on a busy opening week of ticket sales, it would appear those fears were unfounded.
“Our due diligence told us clearly that the Portland market had strong demand for the return of Indy car racing,” said Kevin Savoree, whose company also promoted the St. Petersburg, Toronto, and Mid-Ohio races. “This first week on sale, it seems that we’re off to a great start in Portland setting a single-day record for our company for advance sales across our family of events!
“The Verizon IndyCar Series has a strong field of teams and drivers. The new 2018 [bodywork] has produced three different winners in the first three races, and the 102nd Indy 500 is just weeks away. The Grand Prix of Portland is going to be an important race in the championship sitting as the next to last round on the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series calendar.”