IndyCar Agrees to Pay $925,000 for Ticket Refunds

Attorney General Maura Healey is also suing Boston Grand Prix and its CEO John Casey.
Waving the checkered flag.

Photo via iStock/stevedangers

Boston’s IndyCar saga just took another sharp turn on Thursday, as Attorney General Maura Healey announced her office is suing race organizers, and has struck a deal to help refund those who bought tickets for the ill-fated spectacle.

IndyCar, the national organization, has agreed to pay $925,000 of the $1.67 million owed to ticket-buyers, Healey has announced.

The suits filed Thursday against Boston Grand Prix and John Casey, the firm’s CEO, seek to secure the rest of the money that nearly 4,000 people paid in advance to watch the ambitious race through Boston’s Seaport, before Casey abruptly pulled the plug on the event.

The local firm is accused of spending ticket and sponsorship money to cover the costs of putting on the race while the permitting process was still underway, “despite knowing that their business venture was insolvent.” So when the bid for the race fell apart in April, BGP could only repay consumers $400,000, Healey’s office says.

“Boston Grand Prix and its CEO knew full well when they marketed and sold this event that they didn’t have the resources or permits to make it happen,” Healey says in a sharply worded statement. “They failed to protect consumers, and we will do all we can to hold them accountable.”

The news comes just after Boston Grand Prix announced it was declaring bankruptcy and revealed it has just $10,900 in cash assets and $9 million in liabilities.

Also in the statement, Healey praises the national IndyCar for its cooperation.

“I appreciate IndyCar’s willingness to step up for their fans and help resolve this problem,” Healey says. “They’ve gone above and beyond to be a productive part of this solution, and their fans will reap the benefits.”

She instructed those who still haven’t gotten their money back—tickets cost as much as $205 a pop—to file a complaint through her office, although she said doing so wasn’t mandatory to receive a refund. When exactly consumers will see that money again, though, remains unclear.

“We enjoy some of the most loyal and devoted fans in all of sports, and so we are pleased to work with the Attorney General and contribute in her efforts to protect ticket buyers,” Mark Miles, CEO of Hulman & Co., IndyCar’s parent company, says in a statement released Thursday afternoon. “We want our fans to know that we share their disappointment that the race won’t take place. And we also want to join them in expressing our appreciation for Attorney General Healey’s work on their behalf.”

Update, July 7, 4 p.m.: Added statement from IndyCar.

Update, July 7, 4:30 p.m.: Updated photo at top of post, which previously showed an F1 car.


Spencer Buell Staff Writer at Boston Magazine sbuell@bostonmagazine.com