Quebec won't give $1M for race

MONTREAL -- Canada's only NASCAR race might be in jeopardy.

The Quebec government on Wednesday rejected developer Francois Dumontier's request for $1 million in government assistance, half each from Quebec and Ottawa, to help offset an anticipated $1.6 million deficit.

"The developer has not satisfactorily proven to the Department of Tourism that it would be profitable for them to invest in the event," Isabelle Lord, spokeswoman for Tourism Minister Nicole Menard, said.

This funding shortfall likely means August's Nationwide Series race will be the end of NASCAR racing at the Gilles Villeneuve track on Montreal's Ile Notre-Dame.

The city of Montreal's contract with International Speedway Corporation and its promoter expired June 30. It is the only such event in the country.

The city reacted strongly several years ago when it lost the Formula One Grand Prix, which brings wealthy international tourists and huge parties to Montreal. The city did get the F1 race back.

Montreal's mayor, however, seemed unfazed by the possible loss of the NASCAR race.

"Efforts were made," Mayor Gerald Tremblay said. "It's unfortunate, but maybe there will be other events in the future."