The fifth race of the American Power Boat Association Offshore Championship Series, the August 3-7 Great Lakes Grand Prix in Michigan City, Ind., has a new title sponsor this year. Play Tradez, an online investment portal launched in late 2021, has signed on for the roll in the Offshore Powerboat Organization-produced event.
The Super Stock-class Play Tradez team of FB Marine Group managing partner Randy Sweers and Bryan Marquardt aired it out during yesterday’s American Power Boat Association Offshore National Championship Series season-opener in Cocoa Beach, Fla. Photo by Pete Boden copyright Shoot 2 Thrill Pix.
Offshore racing fans will recognized Play Tradez as the primary backer of a Super Stock-class raceboat of the same name throttled by FB Marine Group managing partner Randy Sweers and driven by class-newcomer Bryan Marquardt.
“Bringing Play Tradez on board adds a new level of exposure for the race and certainly gives Play Tradez the ability to extend their brand across the country, as our race continues to lead the circuit in popularity,” said Jack Arnet, the chief executive officer of the LaPorte County (Ind.) Convention and Visitors Bureau, in a press release from the venue organizers. “We are especially happy to announce Play Tradez as our 2022 title sponsor,”
According to a Convention and Visitors Bureau-commissioned report produced by Certec, Inc., a Kentucky-based marketing analysis group, the Great Lakes Grand Prix has been an ongoing economic boon for the area. In 2021, out-of-town visitors to event contributed nearly $17.7 million to LaPorte County’s economy in 2021, compared to $13.6 million for the 2019 event, In addition, local residents spent a total of $675,164 at the event.
“We celebrate the positive impact this event has on our local economy,” said Duane Parry, the mayor of Michigan City, in the release.
Out-of-town visitor-spending generated $46 million in tax revenues, with $915,300 of that going to local government. Jobs generated by the Grand Prix provided more than $3.9 million in wages to LaPorte County workers. Food, beverage, shopping, and transportation accounted for 75 percent of expenditures.
Total attendance during the four-day celebration reached 249,400, easily topping the 2019 attendance of 190,000. Park attendance was 80,000 on Saturday and 90,000 on Sunday. By comparison, the Taste of Michigan City drew a total of 30,000 visitors.
Said Parry, “The Great Lakes Grand Prix is such an important part of our special events calendar. Our community embraces our offshore powerboat friends, and I personally enjoy visiting with all the teams.”
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