CHAMPCAR/CART: Rocketsports/Tagliani renew contract

Rocketsports Racing signs Alex Tagliani for the 2004 Champ Car World Series. LANSING, Mich. (December 19, 2003) -- Rocketsports Racing team owner Paul Gentilozzi today announced the return of Champ Car driver Alex Tagliani to the Rocketsports...

Rocketsports Racing signs Alex Tagliani for the 2004 Champ Car World Series.

LANSING, Mich. (December 19, 2003) -- Rocketsports Racing team owner Paul Gentilozzi today announced the return of Champ Car driver Alex Tagliani to the Rocketsports team for the 2004 Champ Car World Series. Tagliani joined Rocketsports in January, 2003 for its Champ Car debut season, and led the team to three podium finishes and two pole starts. With 77 career starts, Tagliani will return to Rocketsports for his fifth year racing Champ Cars.

"I have a huge amount of respect for Alex's desire and talent," stated Gentilozzi. "I am happy to welcome him back to the Rocketsports team for next season. He was with us in the beginning, when we first entered the Champ Car World Series and he has helped build this team," said the three-time Trans-Am champion turned Champ Car team owner.

"We've learned a lot in the past year and plan to use this experience to our advantage to become more competitive. I have confidence in Alex and I'm excited about stepping up the challenge in 2004," concluded Gentilozzi, revealing his competitive edge.

Tagliani, who was recently in Lansing for a seat fitting, matched Gentilozzi's enthusiasm. "I am thrilled to be returning to Rocketsports for the 2004 Champ Car season. I'm proud to drive for Paul and appreciate the confidence he has in me," said Tagliani.

"We knew this first season was going to be a tough year of learning for everyone," explained Tagliani. "As a team, we brought our experiences together for the first time and built something new. We have collected important data in our first season and are becoming more consistent. Our strength was not always reflected in our results, but this too will improve as we become more confident. We plan to go racing and win!" declared Tagliani.

Tagliani finished the 2003 Champ Car World Series in tenth place with 97 points. In 2002, Tagliani earned a career-best eighth in the championship with 111 points.

The 2004 Champ Car World Series promises to be an action-packed season, which kicks off with the Long Beach Grand Prix in April, 2004.

-rsr-

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