Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix news 2008-09-30

DETROIT BELLE ISLE GRAND PRIX 2009 INDYCAR SERIES RACE TO BE BROADCAST ON VERSUS SPORTS NETWORK DETROIT, Mich. (September 30, 2008) -- Racing fans across the country will be able to see more of the intense on-track action from the Motor...

DETROIT BELLE ISLE GRAND PRIX 2009 INDYCAR SERIES RACE TO BE BROADCAST ON VERSUS SPORTS NETWORK

DETROIT, Mich. (September 30, 2008) -- Racing fans across the country will be able to see more of the intense on-track action from the Motor City and more of the in-depth stories of the IndyCar Series with today's announcement that the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix, September 4-6, 2009, will be broadcast on the VERSUS cable sports network next Labor Day weekend.

VERSUS, one of the largest, yet fastest-growing sports cable networks in the country, will televise the Detroit Indy Grand Prix presented by Firestone live from the Raceway at Belle Isle Park street circuit from 3-6 p.m. ET on Sunday, September 6. The race -- Round 16 of the 18-race 2009 IndyCar Series -- will also be re-broadcast on VERSUS following the event. In addition to its race coverage, VERSUS will also air a one-hour race preview and qualifying show from Belle Isle on Saturday, September 5 (specific broadcast window to be announced).

Currently available in more than 74 million homes, VERSUS joins the IndyCar Series in DIRECTV HD broadcast family in 2009, carrying 13 series events. As part of its new partnership, VERSUS will provide more broadcast coverage than ever before for North America's premier open-wheel racing series. This includes three-hour television windows for each race telecast, featuring pre- and post-race shows, a one-hour race preview and support programming designed to showcase the personalities and storylines in the IndyCar Series. ABC will also televise five IndyCar Series events in 2009.

"We're looking forward to bringing the beauty of Belle Isle Park and world-class auto racing in the Detroit and Windsor region to the VERSUS network in 2009," said Bud Denker, Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix Event Chairman. "The increased exposure that the network will provide for the IndyCar Series and its racing venues will certainly be positive."

Formerly known as the Outdoor Life Network, VERSUS has dramatically raised its sports programming profile since its creation in 2006. The channel is now owned by Comcast Corporation, the nation's leading provider of cable, entertainment and communications products and services. VERSUS is the exclusive cable television home of the National Hockey League (NHL), the Tour de France and Professional Bull Riding (PBR) and the network also broadcasts many high-profile college football games from conferences such as the Pac-10 and the Big 12. All of these sports have seen a dramatic increase in viewership on VERSUS in the past year.

All 2009 IndyCar Series races will be broadcast in high-definition (HD) television.

The American Le Mans Series race at the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix -- the Detroit Sports Car Challenge presented by Bosch -- will also be broadcast live and details on the September 5 telecast will be announced in the coming days.

The international television audience for the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix will also continue to be impressive in 2009. The picturesque 2.1-mile street circuit along the Detroit River provides a beautiful backdrop for racing in the Motor City as the broadcasts for both the IndyCar Series and the American Le Mans Series races will be available in a remarkable 550 million homes worldwide combined through international syndication and distribution.

About the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix

The Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix is organized and promoted by a subsidiary of the Downtown Detroit Partnership, whose chairman is Roger Penske. A special charitable organization has been established that enables all net proceeds raised by the Grand Prix to fund measures for the improvement and preservation of Belle Isle. Once again featuring the IndyCar Series and the American Le Mans Series, the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix will be held Labor Day weekend, September 4-6, 2009. To learn more about the Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix, please visit www.detroitgp.com.

-credit: dgp

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