CHAMPCAR/CART: Milwaukee, Cleveland to conduct light tests

INDIANAPOLIS (April 16, 2003) -- An ancient Chinese proverb advises that it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness, but in order to race 750hp Champ Cars at night, a single candle simply will not do. To that end, and to ensure...

INDIANAPOLIS (April 16, 2003) -- An ancient Chinese proverb advises that it is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness, but in order to race 750hp Champ Cars at night, a single candle simply will not do.

To that end, and to ensure that the new night races in Cleveland and Milwaukee will proceed as planned, the historic Milwaukee Mile and Musco Lighting are set to conduct the first lighting test Thursday, April 17 in preparation for Round 6 of the Champ Car World Series Saturday, May 31st, the Milwaukee Mile 250. The 1.032-mile oval celebrates its 100th anniversary this season with a Champ Car race under the lights and will give fans their first look at what the venerable oval will look like under the glare of the Musco lights. Champ Car will have its Fast Lap pace car program on hand to provide a glimpse of what cars will look like at speed when the series returns in May for its annual sojourn to Milwaukee.

Champ Car Chief Steward Chris Kniefel and Barber Dodge Pro Series driver Albert Unser, who will be making his first-ever oval track start when the BDPS joins the May card, will be on hand to observe the lighting provided by the towers, and will also be giving pace-car rides around the mile oval to attending media. Representatives from Musco Lighting and from the track will be on hand to answer any questions.

The towers have already been tested for the 22nd running of the U.S. Bank Presents The Cleveland Grand Prix -- Round 9 of the Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford July 3-5. In addition to the Grand Prix and Musco Lighting personnel, Champ Car President and CEO Chris Pook was on hand to evaluate the lighting test at Cleveland's Burke Lakefront Airport.

"The Musco lighting is magnificent. We were able to conduct this initial test thanks to the cooperation of the City of Cleveland and Burke Lakefront Airport," said Pook. "With the bright lights and the Cleveland downtown skyline in the background, Champ Car racing is going to be showcased in a manner like it's never been seen before. This is truly going to re-energize what is already a terrific event."

Illuminating the 2.106-mile temporary circuit is the world's largest temporary lighting project ever undertaken. It will also mark the first time a road racing circuit has been lit. The project will require 21 Musco Mobile lighting trucks producing the equivalent of nearly a half million standard car headlights. The magnitude of the Cleveland race will be comparable to lighting 23 football fields at once.

The excitement surrounding the night racing has spread to race fans. Milwaukee will celebrate its 100th anniversary with the a number of activities for fans including the Centennial Fan Jam which will provide fans with a festival-style atmosphere where they can enjoy the race atmosphere after Friday qualifying. There will also be a VIP dinner and concert featuring the classic rock band America, famous for hits such as Horse With No Name and Ventura Highway. Cleveland ticket renewals are up by nine percent over last year's numbers. In addition to racing under the lights, the official City of Cleveland fireworks will add to the nighttime excitement on Friday, July 4.

Milwaukee tickets can be ordered by calling 1-414-453-8277 while tickets for the U.S. Bank presents the Cleveland Grand Prix can be ordered by calling 1-800-498-RACE (7223) or through Ticketmaster. Admission prices to this 22nd annual event remain the same for the third straight year.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Albert Unser , Chris Pook