Despite there being a month-long gap between the first and second rounds of the 2018 IndyCar schedule, Mark Miles, the CEO of Hulman & Company, owner of IndyCar, suggests a race in Mexico City is more likely to be a summer event.
Today’s release of the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series calendar did not mention the provision for a race in Mexico. However, teams have been warned to keep certain dates blank in their diaries and Miles confirmed in a media teleconference today that an 18th race may still be held at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez.
“I think there is still a possibility of adding Mexico City for next year,” he said. “We felt like with Portland being nailed down, most of the schedule – a schedule we're happy to have as our final schedule for next year – is set and ought to be public.
“But there is ongoing work in Mexico City to get to the track there. I think it's quite close. We're optimistic about the possibility [of it being added] added to the 2018 schedule.”
Rather than added in March as the second race of the season, which Motorsport.com sources believe would be favored by the Corporación Interamericana de Entretenimiento (CIE), Miles suggested it would slot into a three-week gap in August. That more effectively replaces the World Endurance Championship which ran there last year and this year, but which is not on the 2018 WEC calendar.
Said Miles: “If it happens, it will be in there probably just after Mid-Ohio where we have a little longer break in the middle of our summer than we'd like.
“Everything we know about the opportunity there is exciting – great track, great facility, obviously a huge market, a lot of open-wheel fans and IndyCar fans. We hope that can come together, but this schedule still works for us if it doesn't.
“We have not presented a final deadline for that. It would be a combination of what they would need time-wise to be successful in promoting an event in early August. But from our perspective, it could be added down the road.”