CHAMPCAR/CART: Franchise Board vote gives management new abilities

Franchise Board meeting provides Champ Car Management with ability to effect changes in series doctrine. INDIANAPOLIS (April 16, 2003) -- In an effort to facilitate Champ Car's transition to a new rules package for 2005 and beyond, the series'...

Franchise Board meeting provides Champ Car Management with ability to effect changes in series doctrine.

INDIANAPOLIS (April 16, 2003) -- In an effort to facilitate Champ Car's transition to a new rules package for 2005 and beyond, the series' Franchise Board voted Saturday to yield its authority regarding all engine-related matters to Champ Car management. The meeting was held in conjunction with the 29th annual running of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

The historic concession allows series management to develop an engine formula, draft contracts, write rules and foster relationships that may be attractive to new manufacturers, without having to subject the matters to the votes of the Franchise Board.

"The Franchise Board showed unity in granting management the authority on matters that had long been under their control, and did so for the good of the series," said Champ Car Vice-President of Operations John Lopes. "The owners on the Franchise Board have done a lot of great things for Champ Car racing in the past and this is just another example of how they have put the series first in their thinking."

"While the Franchise Board has voted to streamline the decision-making process and provide management with the necessary tools to move forward sufficiently in certain technical areas, it is important to note that it will not be done without the input of the owners through the Technical Committee," said Champ Car CEO and President Christopher R. Pook. "This is an excellent decision and management is grateful for the faith that the owners have placed in the team."

In other developments, the Franchise Board gave voting rights to each of the new owners in the Champ Car World Series, boosting the number of possible votes to 19. The Board also empowered Champ Car management with the right to compose certain competition-related rules without subjecting them to Franchise Board review.

Championship Auto Racing Teams, Inc. (NYSE: MPH) owns, operates and markets the 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford. Veteran racing teams such as Newman/Haas Racing, Player's/Forsythe Racing, Team Rahal, Patrick Racing and Walker Racing will compete with many new teams this year in pursuit of the Vanderbilt Cup. CART Champ Cars are thoroughbred racing machines that reach speeds in excess of 200 miles per hour, showcasing the technical expertise of manufacturers such as Ford Motor Company, Lola Cars, Reynard Motorsport and Bridgestone/Firestone North American Tire, LLC. The 18-race 2003 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford will be broadcast by television partners CBS, and SPEED Channel. CART also owns and operates its top development series, the Toyota Atlantic Championship. Learn more about CART's open-wheel racing series at www.champcarworldseries.com.

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Series IndyCar