I think the announcement by the Honda Dealers of Ontario – that admission to the Honda Indy Toronto on Friday, July 16, will be free – is great news for race fans and even better news for Make-A-Wish Canada, the children’s charity that helps make wishes come true for Canadian children faced with life-threatening medical conditions.
The dealers hope that people heading to the CNE to watch the Indy cars without having to pay will donate their spare change to Make-A-Wish. I hope some paper money makes its way into the collection baskets, too.
So, good for them and good luck. I hope the place is packed.
But how to guarantee that?
I have a suggestion: instead of starting the day’s activities at 8 or 9 in the morning, start the program later in the day so that it goes into the early evening. Kids and people on vacation wouldn’t mind and this would make it possible for everybody working downtown to take in some of the action (and perhaps donate more money to the charity).
For years and years, going all the way back to 1986, the promoters and sponsors of the Toronto Indy would say, with straight faces, that Friday attendance was 45,000 (or 52,000 or 41,500 or something huge like that) when, in fact, the place was mostly empty.
Because Friday is a work day and
An 8 a.m. start on Saturday and Sunday is fine, because it’s the weekend. But Friday is problematic when it comes to attracting a crowd. That could be solved by throwing the green flag at noon and going through till 8:30 Friday night. It’s Daylight Savings Time and the sun doesn’t start going down till then.
The key thing would be to get the support classes out of the way early and then have the Indy cars practice from – say – 4:30 till 5:30. You could then have the big NASCAR stock cars out there from 5:45 till 6:45 and then have the Indy cars back from 7 till 8 or 8:30.
would be able to leave their offices downtown at 4:30 and head for the Ex in time to
watch Dario and Danica and
Everybody would have a fine time and they might even dig deeper.