JUNE 16, 2006
Indianapolis class action rejected
A legal case arising from last year's United States Grand Prix at Indianapolis has been dismissed by a US court and, although the claimants have 30 days to appeal the decision, there seems little chance of that being successful. There were various different lawsuits after the debacle last year, involving various different defendants but the claims that fans were defrauded have little validity as ticket buyers understand that there are various ways in which a race can lose a number of frontrunners: notably in accidents or with mechanical failures. The 14 cars that pulled into the pits at the end of the parade lap were classified as starters and thus all the parties involved delivered what they promised to deliver - at least in legal terms.
The inteteresting thing in the new couple of weeks will be to see the levels of coverage that Formula 1 attracts on its North American tour - and how many people come through the gates at Indy. While it is true to say that hundreds of diehard Formula 1 fans were turned away from the sport by the controversy, it is argued in some quarters that the publlicity will result in a bigger crowd this year as the curious come to see what the fuss was all about.
The crowd numbers may be important as the contract between Indianapolis and the Formula One group is up for renewal this year and F1 cannot really afford to be cut loose from as solid US venue. At the same time one could argue that the drain of racing organisations from Indianapolis to the Charlotte area is a very good reason why Indianapolis cannot afford to let the F1 go.
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