DETROIT – The Detroit Grand Prix’s proposal to move the race to the streets of Downtown Detroit was approved by Detroit City Council on Nov. 3.
So now it’s real. Cars will be racing through Downtown Detroit beginning in 2023.
As the renderings show, the circuit is 1.7 miles and has 10 turns. Racers will use Jefferson Avenue, but the circuit will not go north of it. That means, downtown will remain open during the race which was a big selling point to the city council.
“Just to see the tour of the site that’s proposed, it’s something brilliant,” council President Brenda Jones said. “Having the streets still be open and traffic and still flow, it will help the small businesses.”
Tuesday plans were unveiled on how it will all work. Bud Denker, Chairman of the Detroit Grand Prix, said there is a benefit to bring the race downtown.
“To think we will have half of our circuit open to the public for free is unprecedented,” Denker said. “Nowhere else does that happen, but it will happen here in Detroit in 2023.”
I got a sneak peak of the circuit with IndyCar Driver Josef Newgarden.
“I’m so excited the track coming downtown, it just makes sense,” Newgarden said. “As much as I love Belle Isle, it’s great to have it back in the city.”
We weaved through traffic during our ride, but come race day, it will be a different story.
“My favorite part is Jefferson,” Newgarden said. “It leads into a very wide hair-pin corner. We’ll be coming in at 185 miles per hour to a dead stop. It will provide a good opportunity for passing. "
For the full ride-along with Newgarden and more on the downtown race circuit, tune into Sports Final Edition on Sunday.