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Detroit GP Set for Downtown Circuit in 2023

Downtown Detroit Grand Prix gets green light from city council for 2023…

Photo: Rick Dole/IMSA

The Detroit Grand Prix will return to the downtown streets following the city council’s approval of the relocation of the event from Belle Isle.

Announced on Wednesday, the event, featuring the NTT IndyCar Series and likely continued participation from the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, will begin in 2023, with next year’s event remaining at Belle Isle.

“Over the last five weeks, Grand Prix representatives have participated in numerous listening sessions and information sharing meetings with Detroit residents, business leaders, community groups and individual district representatives on the idea of returning the race to its roots on the streets of Detroit,” a statement from the event promoters read.

“The positive reaction and the excitement that we have seen from the community about the Grand Prix coming back downtown reinforces our belief that this relocation will provide a significant benefit to the city, its residents and our local businesses for the future.

“We thank Mayor Duggan, the City of Detroit team, Council President Brenda Jones and everyone on the Detroit City Council for their input and their support throughout this process.”

In September, Penske Corporation President Bud Denker made a presentation during a city council meeting, proposing a temporary 1.7-mile, 10-turn circuit that would be near the original track location that hosted both Formula 1 and IndyCar in the 1980s to early ’90s.

The event moved to Belle Isle in 1992 and ran through 2001 until being revived by Roger Penske in 2007-08 and again from 2012.

According to a report from the Detroit Free Press, the contract is set to run through 2025 and that half of the circuit will be open free of charge to spectators.

It’s understood that there are likely to be slight modifications to the originally proposed layout that will wrap around GM’s Renaissance Center and run down Jefferson Ave. 

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and SPEED Channel and has contributed to numerous other motorsports publications worldwide. Contact John

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