Series statement on Detroit 2009 cancellation

AMERICAN LE MANS SERIES TARGETING RETURN TO BELLE ISLE The American Le Mans Series looks forward to making its return to the Motor City and continuing its participation in the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix, one of North America's premier ...

AMERICAN LE MANS SERIES TARGETING RETURN TO BELLE ISLE

The American Le Mans Series looks forward to making its return to the Motor City and continuing its participation in the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix, one of North America's premier motorsport weekends. The event has been postponed for 2009.

"In just two years, the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix fulfilled its promise of bringing world-class racing back to the Motor City, a key market for our teams, manufacturers and marketing partners," said Scott Atherton, Series President and CEO. "These are exceptionally challenging times, especially for the city of Detroit and the many automotive and related companies that call Detroit home. We salute and support the leadership shown by Roger Penske, Bud Denker and the entire staff of the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix. Of course we are disappointed to lose this event from our 2009 schedule, but we are confident in their abilities to continue promoting and growing this fantastic event and eagerly anticipate our return to Detroit in the near future."

The American Le Mans Series served as a co-feature on the Belle Isle weekend since the inaugural event in 2007. The Series' platform of product relevance and practical, real-world application of on-track technology is a perfect fit for the world's automobile capital. Spectators at the event took to the Series immediately with its mix of exotic and innovative prototypes along with highly sophisticated GT-class entries that were mirror images of the cars many drove to Belle Isle.

"The economic environment that our region, state and country faces, both today and in 2009, is difficult," said Roger Penske, Chairman of the Downtown Detroit Partnership. "It is unfortunate that we must postpone the 2009 Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix as sponsorship opportunities and support has proven to be very challenging for the event in the near term."

The American Le Mans Series will open its 11th season with the 57th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Fresh from Florida on March 21, 2009.

-credit: alms

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