Indianapolis, IN -- PacWest Racing Group has appointed Australian media identity Brett Murray to the newly created position of Communications Manager for the 2000 FedEx Championship Series.

Murray has spent more than 15 years working in areas of motorsport and media and has been the Media Manager for the previous two highly successful Australian Champ Car races in Surfers Paradise.

As Communications Manager, Murray will work with PacWest's media, marketing, sponsorship and business development staff to create opportunities for the team and its partners.

Murray, fondly known as "Crusher" throughout the CART fraternity, recently agreed to the terms of his arrangement with PacWest owner, Bruce McCaw and Vice President Business Operations, Steve Fusek, and has already created a base in Indianapolis.

Discussions with Murray originally took place during the Honda Indy 300 in October, which produced a record four-day crowd in excess of 250,000 fans and blanket media coverage, according to Fusek.

"Brett, or 'Crusher' as everyone knows him, has a unique media, marketing and promotional style which we believe will be a tremendous asset for PacWest," said Fusek.

"He has a valuable knowledge of Champ Car racing and CART and an understanding of media and marketing concepts - the fact that the drivers voted him "promoter" of the championship this year is testimony to that.

"He is an 'ideas man' and will be a valuable addition to our team."

Murray, 31, is delighted to have been approached by PacWest and is looking forward to working with one of the sport's most professional teams.

"It has always been a goal of mine to develop my business into the ranks of CART, but the deal had to be right," said Murray.

"Bruce McCaw has provided me with a fantastic opportunity and I look forward to working with the PacWest Racing Group and playing a role in a team effort aimed at taking the operation to the "next level".

"When Steve Fusek and (Vice President Racing Operations) John Anderson approached me for a meeting on the Gold Coast I immediately felt comfortable and I have been made to feel at home by the entire team in Indy."

Ashleigh Higgins continues her role with PacWest Racing and will work with Murray as Communications Coordinator.

Murray is based in Indianapolis with his wife Trudi and his company, BAM Media, is currently re-negotiating an arrangement to continue as the Media Manager of the Australian race which recently signed a contract with CART until 2003.