SBRS: Barber statement on Pro Series hiatus

Skip Barber to elevate status of the National Series and not run the Pro Series in 2004. LAKEVILLE, Conn. (Feb. 2) - Skip Barber Racing School LLC announced today that it plans to further elevate the profile of its highly successful Formula...

Skip Barber to elevate status of the National Series and not run the Pro Series in 2004.

LAKEVILLE, Conn. (Feb. 2) - Skip Barber Racing School LLC announced today that it plans to further elevate the profile of its highly successful Formula Dodge National Championship Series (FDNC) Presented by RACER in 2004 to provide even more visibility to one of the most important series for aspiring professional race car drivers. As part of its 2004 schedule, the National Series will be supporting the 52nd running of the Mobil 12 Hours of Sebring, Mar. 17-20, and the Champ Car race at Road America Aug. 6-8. In addition to an announcement concerning increases in scholarship funding for FDNC competitors, its complete schedule will also be released shortly.

The company also announced that it will not run the Barber Dodge Pro Series in 2004 in order to update the series for the future and focus on the National Series. The move was precipitated by the widespread uncertainty in U.S. open-wheel racing resulting from the ownership status of Champ Car.

"The delay settling the ownership status of Champ Car, our sanctioning body, prevented us, like many others, from adequately preparing for the 2004 season," said Aaron Hollander, President and CEO of Skip Barber Racing School. "We were unable to negotiate a mutually beneficial sanctioning relationship that would allow us to operate a viable series for our drivers and sponsors. Having said that, we look forward to the possibility of continuing to work with and support Champ Car in numerous ways this year and in the future. We wish them nothing but success."

Hollander went on to say, "We are exploring all alternatives for 2005 that meet the requirements of a changing marketplace. Skip Barber Racing participates in nearly every facet of motorsports and we are afforded a large number of opportunities for continued growth. We are very optimistic about the future of racing in North America."

"Skip Barber Racing School has a 28-year history of providing unique and innovative programs to help up and coming racers achieve success," commented Divina Galica, Senior Vice President of Racing. "We will spend this year focusing on the Formula Dodge National Championship Presented by RACER and evaluating all of our options for 2005. Those include the possibilities of a new car, and/or race team ownership, and/or race team sponsorship and management. The fact is, Skip Barber Racing has trained more of the world's racecar drivers than any other organization. With all other Skip Barber businesses in a strong growth mode, it allows the company to offer positions to those currently associated with Barber Dodge."

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Series BARBER-PRO , OPENWHEEL