Michelin North America Inc. (MNA) and Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) have established a plan to distribute refunds to people who attended the U.S. Grand Prix Formula 1 race June 19 at IMS.
Because of safety concerns, Group Michelin advised all seven two-car teams running on its tires to withdraw, leading to vocal disappointment from fans. Michelin said later that it would refund the ticket cost to all race attendees as well as provide 20,000 tickets to the Grand Prix event in 2006, if one is held.
Michelin said the refund will cover the face value of each ticket and will be administered by IMS. Race attendees who are IMS account holders will receive a refund automatically while non-account holders must mail their original ticket stub and a ticket claim form beginning Aug. 8. Those stubs must be postmarked no later than Aug. 29 to receive a refund.
Refund checks are expected to be issued and mailed between Sept. 19 and Sept. 26.
Attendance at the event was estimated by various media sources at about 100,000. The average ticket price for that day was about $100, bringing the tab to an estimated $10 million, if all ticket holders apply. IMS does not disclose actual attendance figures.
Michelin also said it will buy 20,000 tickets to the 2006 U.S. Grand Prix at Indianapolis, if such an event is held. Those tickets would be made available to fans who bought tickets to the 2005 race. More details for the distribution of these tickets will be available after the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile releases its 2006 F1 calendar, Michelin said.
``We hope through these gestures to encourage the further development of F1 in the U.S.,'' said MNA Chairman and President Jim Micali.
For more information, vist www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com.