Dan Wheldon’s death comes at a time when the sport is finally being reunified and is secured in its financial health. IndyCar strengthened through its partnership with title sponsor IZOD and deals with more a dozen new sponsors in 2011.
The month of May and the Indy 500 brought in an estimated $336 million into the local economy, according to the Indianapolis Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The total does not take into account year-round spending by teams and other racing related businesses.
One lawsuit estimates the IZOD sponsorship deal will be worth $100 million over a potential eight years.
IZOD said the return on its 2010 sponsorship furnished a 350 percent return, while increasing brand awareness.
Zak Brown of Just Marketing International said that racing sponsors understand accidental death is a component of open-wheel racing.
"Anyone who participates in the sport realizes this could happen and does," said Brown. "Any sponsor in the sport, they know that there's an element of risk. From a business standpoint, them trying to grow TV ratings, I don't see consumers not turning in to IndyCar racing because of this."
More than a dozen new sponsors committed to IndyCar in 2011, and with new engines and chassis coming on board in the next two years, sponsors such as Chevrolet and Lotus will be fixtures again throughout the series.