Laguna Seca to feature an American Le Mans

LAGUNA SECA RACEWAY, Monterey, California (December 4, 1998) Two of sports car racing's most storied venues will join forces October 8-10, 1999 as an American version of the French endurance classic appears for the first time ever at Laguna Seca Raceway. The 1999 Visa Sports Car Championships presented by Honda will host round seven of the new eight race American Le Mans Series which debuted October 10 of this year at the popular and well attended Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, Georgia.

Le Mans, France annually hosts a 24-hour endurance competition that has come to be known as the most coveted trophy in global sports car racing. It's a veritable battle of the titans where manufacturers like Porsche, Ford, Ferrari, Jaguar, Mazda, BMW and Panoz regularly put it all on the line for a 'winner takes all' shootout. Laguna Seca fans will have the special opportunity to witness the spectacle of Le Mans without traveling to France next year as Le Mans prototypes/GT1s, GT2s and GT3s do battle for class and overall honors in the scheduled three hour sprint race on Sunday, October 10. A Women's Global GT Series and Superstars of Auto Racing will also be a part of the American Le Mans Series program. The CNBC television network will carry the Laguna Seca race live.

John Stornetta, General Manager at Laguna Seca Raceway, commented, "When we chose to bring sports car racing back to Monterey during our 40th anniversary season, we made a commitment to our sponsors and our fans to provide the most prestigious and competitive series available anywhere. SCRAMP (the non-profit entity that operates Laguna Seca Raceway) believes the American Le Mans Series is in a unique position to deliver this."

"The addition of Laguna Seca adds one of our Country's most formidable road courses to our inaugural season and solidifies our schedule for 1999," said Bill Donaldson, Executive Director of the American Le Mans Series.

The complete American Le Mans Series schedule is as follows:

Sebring, FL, March 20 Road Atlanta, GA, April 18 Mosport, CAN, June 27 Sears Point, CA, July 25 Portland, OR, August 1 Petit Le Mans, GA, September 18 Laguna Seca Raceway, CA, October 8-10 San Diego, CA, Nov 7

Tickets will go on sale January 4, 1999 at the Laguna Seca Raceway Ticket Office. For information on special ticket packages, weekend camping and group discounts, call 1-800-327-SECA, 8:00am to 5:00pm PST. Tickets and event information are also available on the World Wide Web, at www.laguna-seca.com