Providence still on radar for 2014

A proposed street race in Providence, Rhode Island did not make the cut for next season’s IZOD IndyCar Series schedule, but remains one of several potential new venues that the series could visit in 2014.

Based on series CEO Randy Bernard’s comments on Monday regarding the proposed Providence round, re-establishing an event in New England seems to remain a high priority for IndyCar. The series visited New Hampshire Motor Speedway in 2011, but low attendance doomed that race to one-and-done status.

“I think Providence did a fantastic job, a marvelous job, of really trying to come together and putting it together,” said Bernard in regards to Providence’s efforts on Monday. “Putting on a street race is a monumental task, and I think that they want to make sure that they have all their ducks in a row — just like we want to see it.

“They couldn’t meet all of our deadlines. They were working diligently on trying to get it done, but unfortunately, it falls into a crunch period where they just ran out of time.”

Despite the time issues, Bernard still hailed the Providence group for its “passion and energy” about staging an event in Little Rhody’s capital city. But he also issued a warning to Providence and the other potential new markets in 2014 — a group that also includes New Orleans and several markets in Canada.

“If they are going to do [a race], it needs to happen sooner rather than later because we are not going to increase our schedule by a significant amount of events, which means there’s a very limited amount of races that we are going to bring on anew,” said Bernard.

“There’s not room for everybody, but I guess the big key here is which ones get onto our schedule early enough to be on 2014.”