2003 schedule finalized

American Le Mans Series finalizes 2003 Schedule. BRASELTON, Ga. (December 18, 2002) -- The American Le Mans Series has finalized its 2003 schedule by confirming the length of two races, changing the television network for two events and removing...

American Le Mans Series finalizes 2003 Schedule.

BRASELTON, Ga. (December 18, 2002) -- The American Le Mans Series has finalized its 2003 schedule by confirming the length of two races, changing the television network for two events and removing a tentative round of the series in Europe.

The sports car endurance racing series will hold 10 events in 2003, all in North America, beginning with the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring at Sebring (Fla.) International Raceway Mar. 13-15.

The series will make its first-ever appearance in Mexico and will hold an event Apr. 3-5 at the revitalized Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in Mexico City. The length of the race, which had previously been listed as TBA, has been set for six hours. SPEED Channel will have live, flag-to-flag television coverage of the race.

In addition, the series will return to Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis., for the second consecutive year Aug. 22-24 and will hold a timed event of two hours and 45 minutes. The length of the race had previously been listed as 500 miles. The race will be televised live by SPEED Channel, rather than by NBC Sports as had been previously announced.

The series event that will be held Aug. 15-17 at Canada's Mosport International Raceway will be televised live by NBC Sports rather than SPEED Channel as had been previously indicated.

The series had intended to hold an event at a premier European facility in mid to late May, between the time of the traditional pre-practice for the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the actual running of the Le Mans 24-hour race in mid-June. The European event was listed as a TBA on the series schedule when it was announced in October.

"Although there has been a great deal of interest, unfortunately we have not been able to confirm a sanction agreement with an appropriate venue or event organizer to hold a European round in 2003," said Scott Atherton, President of the American Le Mans Series. "The combination of many European tracks experiencing serious financial challenges, coupled with the general state of European sports car racing has prevented us from confirming an acceptable arrangement for the American Le Mans Series and its participants."

Atherton said that the "TBA" will be removed from the series schedule for 2003 and will not be replaced.

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