Press Release | CHICAGO STREET RACE
CHICAGO (Oct. 4, 2023) – Following the success of the inaugural event, NASCAR today announced that Chicago will welcome the NASCAR Cup Series back to Grant Park on Sunday July 7, 2024 at 4:30 pm ET/3:30 pm CT, with the NASCAR Xfinity Series set to return on Saturday, July 6, 2024 at 2:30 pm ET/1:30 pm CT, with both races broadcast on NBC for the first time.
In addition to the 2024 return announcement, Choose Chicago and the Chicago Sports Commission released the findings of their independent economic impact report, which showed that the inaugural Chicago Street Race Weekend exceeded initial economic forecasts despite historic rains, delivering a total economic impact of $108.9 million for Chicago from corporate spending and non-local attendees who said that the Chicago Street Race was their sole or primary reason for travel. This is in addition to another estimated $6.2 million in economic investment from attendees who said that the event was equally important as other attractions in their decision to travel to Chicago.
“From the very beginning, our objective was to drive global attention and tourism to Chicago while introducing motorsports to an entirely new fan base, and by both measures, 2023 was a resounding success,” said Julie Giese, Chicago Street Race President. “NASCAR is honored to be a part of the Chicago community 365-days a year, and we look forward to building upon the incredible foundation we established this year.”
2024 will mark the second of a minimum three-year commitment between NASCAR and the City of Chicago. As a part of the overall 2024 NASCAR schedule announcement for its three national series (Cup Series, Xfinity Series, and NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series), NASCAR will return to the Second City for the second-ever Street Race in Cup Series history alongside Founding Partners McDonald’s, and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois to help anchor another landmark season for the sport and mark the next installment of a new Chicago Fourth of July tradition.
The 2023 Chicago Street Race Weekend helped drive the highest hotel revenue for Fourth of July Weekend – which traditionally lags behind other summer weekends – since 2015, and brought in more than $8.3 million in state and local taxes while supporting 750 jobs.
“Last year’s event was both a short-term and long-term economic boon for the city, with a tremendous influx of visitors in 2023, and years of continued tourism potential from the millions of NASCAR viewers who watched at home,” said Kara Bachman, Executive Director of the Chicago Sports Commission. “The fact that NASCAR was able to deliver on the economic impact goals they set despite once-in-a-generation flooding speaks not only to the level of demand for NASCAR in Chicago, but also our continued ability as a city to successfully host big events like this.”
According to the economic impact report, 52% of 2023 racegoers travelled to the race from outside of the city, spending money in local restaurants, shops, and hotels as a result. 77% of these visitors, who hailed from all 50 states and 15 countries, said they would recommend Chicago as a travel destination going forward, and 64% of last year’s visitors said that they plan on returning to Chicago for another vacation in the future.
“Thanks to our partners at NASCAR, thousands of tourists from across the globe witnessed first-hand the best of what Chicago has to offer,” said Lynn Osmond, President and CEO of Choose Chicago. “As we look to the future of tourism in this city, what’s equally exciting is the millions of viewers who watched this magnificent two-day television advertisement for our city, and will have the 2024 Chicago Street Race Weekend circled on their calendars.”
In addition to the overall economic impact, the weekend-long national television broadcast delivered another $23.6 million in total media value to Chicago, the equivalent of three 30-second Super Bowl ads for the city. The 2023 NASCAR Chicago Street Race’s Grant Park 220 was the most watched NBC race broadcast since 2017 and was the most-streamed NASCAR race in NBC Sports history (163,500).
Beyond race weekend, NASCAR has remained committed to Chicago on a year-round basis, with a dedicated office of more than a dozen full-time staff who live, work, and volunteer in the community. In Chicago, NASCAR is actively working to ensure that its presence in the community continues to deliver benefits to local residents, particularly Chicago’s youth and local business community through partnerships with organizations like the Boys & Girls Club, Chicago Public Schools, Art Institute, After School Matters, All Kids Bike, and more.