Miami: Track construction underway

Race Organizers Moving Full Speed Ahead Toward April 5-7 BRASELTON, Ga. (January 29, 2002) -- Organizers of the return of street racing to Miami are moving full speed ahead toward the Grand Prix of the Americas, scheduled for April 5-7. The ...

Race Organizers Moving Full Speed Ahead Toward April 5-7

BRASELTON, Ga. (January 29, 2002) -- Organizers of the return of street racing to Miami are moving full speed ahead toward the Grand Prix of the Americas, scheduled for April 5-7. The American Le Mans Series will be the featured event of the weekend on Sunday, April 7.

Though Miami was the home of some of the world's most successful street races in the 1980s and into the 1990s, the music of race cars has not echoed against Miami's downtown skyscrapers since 1995. Raceworks, LLC, a group of Miami businessmen working with the full cooperation of the city, has brought street racing back to the popular resort city.

Construction recently got underway on what will be a 1.54-mile temporary racing circuit that will include part of Miami's famous Biscayne Boulevard and the city's Bayfront Park. Cars will travel south on Biscayne, make a brief loop to the north, and then turn into Bayfront Park. The circuit will wind through the park and then rejoin Biscayne. Pit road and the paddock area will be on Biscayne Boulevard.

While racing through the park, the cars will have scenic Biscayne Bay in the background, with dozens of yachts and other boats moored in the water. Large cruise ships will be visible in the distance at the Port of Miami. The world-famous Grand Prix of Monaco has similar nautical scenery.

The American Le Mans Series, a series of sports car endurance races that features many of the same world-class drivers and cars that compete in the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans, will join the international and cosmopolitan atmosphere of Miami. Sports cars are extremely popular in Miami, and most of the old street races in the city were sports car events.

"I'm really excited about racing in Miami," said Tom Kristensen of Denmark, a three-time winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and a driver for the powerful Audi factory team. "We presented our new Audi in Miami two years ago and the people were very excited to see it. It's a lively city with lively people, and the event will be very exciting."

"I raced in the last street race in Miami in 1995 and it was great," said California's Bryan Herta, who has joined the Panoz factory team for 2002 after a stellar career in CART racing. "It's an exciting city to be in and a great place to hold a street race."

Construction underway includes roadway surface and drainage improvements along Bayfront Park roadways and service roads. More than half of the barrier walls have been built and will be shipped to the site on February 15.

The Grand Prix of the Americas weekend in Miami will also include a race for the popular Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires Cup, along with a race for historic sports cars, including many that actually competed in previous Miami races. Also part of the weekend will be a celebrity race, with participants to be announced in the coming weeks.

Ticket information for the Grand Prix of the Americas is available online at www.miamirace.com or by calling 1-305-373-3333 (toll-free in Florida 1-888-248-7223).

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Series ALMS , Trans-Am
Drivers Tom Kristensen , Bryan Herta