CHAMPCAR/CART: CEO Of Surfers Paradise Champ Car event resigns

INDIANAPOLIS (February 28, 2003) -- After four years of sparking the Champ Car World Series event in picturesque Surfers Paradise to new heights, Geoff Jones stepped aside today as the CEO of what is now known as the Lexmark Indy 300. "The...

INDIANAPOLIS (February 28, 2003) -- After four years of sparking the Champ Car World Series event in picturesque Surfers Paradise to new heights, Geoff Jones stepped aside today as the CEO of what is now known as the Lexmark Indy 300.

"The Lexmark Indy 300 has been a tremendous achievement for Queensland and it has the potential to grow for many years to come," Jones said. "The Lexmark Indy 300 is a great event and one that all Queenslanders can be proud to own. I have certainly enjoyed every moment and have been fortunate to lead a great team in putting together a truly magnificent event."

Jones took over as the event CEO in November of 1998 and raised awareness of the race in the Queensland and Gold Coast area, raising attendance numbers to nearly 300,000 for the four-day event. He will move on to become the General Manager, Queensland, for Carlton and United Breweries -- a company that is a major sponsor of the Champ Car World Series weekend, which is scheduled to take place on October 26th of this year.

"This was a difficult decision, but I will continue to stay involved with the event. Perhaps now I can sit down over the four days and actually watch the racing and entertainment," Jones said. "Indy has grown every year particularly in the diversity of entertainment it provides. This remains an area of growth that will see spectator numbers, corporate support and general interest continue to go up."

The search is now underway for a replacement for Jones while preparations continue for the 2003 event, which will again include not only the 750hp Champ Cars but also the popular V8 Supercars. Lexmark Indy 300 Chairman John Cowley said the new CEO has "big shoes to fill" but will benefit from the policies, strategies and procedures that Jones has established.

"The Board has been delighted with Geoff's performance and he will be a difficult person to replace," said Cowley. "He has great corporate potential and will be a tremendous asset to CUB. I wish him extremely well, and look forward to doing future business with him."

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Series IndyCar