CHAMP CAR ANNOUNCES SENIOR MANAGEMENT SUCCESSION PLAN
STEVE JOHNSON NAMED CHAMP CAR PRESIDENT
INDIANAPOLIS (August 16, 2005) -- As part of Champ Car's senior management succession plan, Steve Johnson will become the new President of Champ Car while Dick Eidswick will remain with the company as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman.
Johnson will take over as Champ Car President effective September 19, after most recently serving as President and CEO of the Sports Car Club of America (SCCA). Johnson was the first individual to serve as President and CEO of both the Club and Professional SCCA organizations. He brings more than 15 years of experience in all facets of sales management, marketing and cross-functional officer's duties with several Fortune 500 companies and a major professional sports organization. Prior to his SCCA appointment in June, 2000, Johnson served as National Hot Rod Association Vice President of Sales.
"I am extremely excited to join the Champ Car team as President," said Johnson."I have been amazed at the progress the series has made over the last twelve months and look forward to continuing the momentum and successes long into the future. Champ Car has a great vision as well as committed teams, owners, sponsors and promoters. Open wheel racing has work to do and Champ Car is getting it done."
Current Champ Car President Dick Eidswick will take on the new role of CEO and Chairman beginning in September. Eidswick will work together with Johnson during the transition period and will continue to contribute to the growth of Champ Car.
"I have been involved in the process of selecting Steve and I am excited he is joining Champ Car," said Eidswick. "Steve will be a strong addition to the company and we welcome him to the Champ Car family. I am going to continue to be involved in Champ Car but in a more limited role."
Eidswick has been a key to Champ Car's resurgence after Kevin Kalkhoven, Gerry Forsythe and Paul Gentilozzi acquired the company in bankruptcy court in January 28, 2003. During his tenure as President Champ Car has shown tremendous growth in event attendance; the Champ Car World Series returned to network television and the growth of the Atlantic Championship following the announcement of the series 2006 car and engine specifications.
"I want to thank Dick for everything he has done for Champ Car," said Champ Car co-owner Kevin Kalkhoven. "He has been one of the most important factors in rebuilding Champ Car and I know he will continue to contribute to our success. A planned succession such as this will enable Champ Car to continue to build upon the very significant momentum it has developed. I believe Steve will step right in and continue to grow Champ Car. He has a proven track record and I'm very excited that he is coming on board."
The Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford is in the middle of one of its most successful and exciting years as nearly 1.2 million fans have attended its first nine events in the 2005 season. The series features some of the greatest race car drivers in the world competing in the most diverse and exciting series in the world. Champions Sebastien Bourdais, Jimmy Vasser and Canadian Paul Tracy along with 2004 Roshfrans Rookie of the Year A. J. Allmendinger and Alex Tagliani are among the drivers battling for the Vanderbilt Cup, which is awarded to the winner of the Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford. The title is contested during three-day festivals of speed on oval circuits, temporary street circuits and permanent road courses.