ALMS: 2001 series to determine champion in North america

BRASELTON, Ga. (October 23, 2000) -- The 2001 American Le Mans Series sports car endurance racing championship will be determined in a series of nine North American races, with two European events as options, series officials have announced. The...

BRASELTON, Ga. (October 23, 2000) -- The 2001 American Le Mans Series sports car endurance racing championship will be determined in a series of nine North American races, with two European events as options, series officials have announced.

The nine-race North American schedule will end Oct. 21 with an event at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Charlotte, N.C. Teams will also have the option of competing in one of two designated events in the European Le Mans Series, with the opportunity of having points earned from that event replacing the lowest point total earned in a North American race.

"It has been our intent to determine the American Le Mans Series championship in North America," said Scott Atherton, President and COO of Panoz Motor Sports Group, which includes the ALMS. "The fan following in North America continues to grow, as does the number of race teams based here. As an American-based series, it is best for everyone involved - fans, drivers, teams and sponsors - to determine the championship in North America."

The ALMS recently announced its schedule for the 2001 season, opening on Mar. 4 at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Tex. The two European races will be held as combination events with the ELMS, including an April 14 date at a site to be determined, and a race in Jarama, Spain, on May 20.

The series awards banquet will follow the Oct. 21 event at Charlotte.

Atherton also announced that the two Asian-Pacific dates on the ALMS schedule for 2001 will be special invitational events featuring large purses and financial incentives for competing teams. Those dates include Nov. 11 at Sepang, Malaysia, and Dec. 2 at Adelaide, Australia.

The Malaysian race will be the inaugural event of what will be the Asian-Pacific Le Mans Series, carrying a special $300,000 purse and other performance incentives. The Adelaide race will be a year-end combined Le Mans Series Championship Event, with the top three teams from each class of the ALMS and ELMS, plus up to six promoter's options, qualifying to compete.

The schedule for both the ALMS and ELMS is open for teams to compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 16-17.

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Series ALMS