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IndyCar sues Grand Prix of Boston over canceled race

The national IndyCar organization is suing the Grand Prix of Boston for breach of contract.STEPHEN CARR/DAILY BREEZE VIA AP/File

The national IndyCar organization is suing the Grand Prix of Boston for breach of contract after local organizers canceled the race scheduled for Labor Day weekend in the Seaport District.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Indiana on Monday, lists the Grand Prix of Boston and two of its chief executive officers, John Casey and Mark Perrone, as defendants.

Stephen Starks, IndyCar’s vice president of promoter relations, said the organization filed the suit “to enforce its rights under the agreement with Boston Grand Prix” and make sure the Grand Prix refunds ticket revenue to fans.

After almost two years of planning, the anticipated IndyCar race for the South Boston waterfront was canceled in late April amid tense clashes between Grand Prix promoters and city officials. At the time, Casey accused Boston of making unreasonable demands, while Patrick Brophy, chief of operations for Boston, fired back that the organizers were “unwilling or unable” to meet the requirements of holding such an event.

In a brief telephone interview on Wednesday, Perrone said that he was surprised to be listed as a defendant, saying that he stepped down as CEO at the end of 2015.


“I’m not real concerned about it because I know it’s probably more procedural than anything,” he said.

“There’s just no way I was involved in any of this,” Perrone added.

Casey did not return a call requesting comment Wednesday night.

Grand Prix officials said last week that it could take up to two months to refund all ticket holders for the race.

“In fairness to IndyCar, I think they’re just trying to protect the ticket buyers,” Perrone said of the lawsuit, “and make sure they get their refunds, which the promoter is responsible for.”

Steve Annear and Mark Arsenault of the Globe Staff contributed to this story. Olivia Arnold can be reached at Follow her on Twitter @olivia_arnold12.