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VIR pre-event news 2005-03-10

AMA Superbikes Return to VIR With New Date, New Promoter, New Title Alton, Va. (Mar. 10) -- VIRginia International Raceway is pleased to announce that the AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited will return to the historic ...

AMA Superbikes Return to VIR With New Date, New Promoter, New Title

Alton, Va. (Mar. 10) -- VIRginia International Raceway is pleased to announce that the AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited will return to the historic Southside Virginia circuit in 2005. While the event will have a new name, a new date and a new promoter, the wheel-to-wheel excitement that has been the hallmark of the AMA Superbikes at VIR will not change at all.

The event, which will now be known as the Suzuki Big Kahuna Nationals, will take place over the weekend of August 26-28. The event schedule will include three days of racing action, including two feature races for the headlining AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited as well as feature races for the supporting classes including the Pro Honda Oils Supersport Championship presented by Shoei, AMA Repsol Lubricants Superstock Series and Lockhart Phillips USA Formula Xtreme Series.

The event will now be promoted by RPM Productions, a company with a long history of promoting successful motorcycle racing events throughout the United States. A long-term agreement between RPM Productions and VIR will ensure the success of the event for the foreseeable future.

Originally, the event was tentatively scheduled on the AMA's 2005 calendar for its traditional mid-September date, and as a two-day event, the format that was employed in 2004 after the event was postponed to October 9-10 as a result of Hurricane Ivan.

"The VIR date has been listed as tentative on our calendar since the schedule was originally released," said John Farris, AMA Vice President, Commercial Development. "In finalizing the championship schedule we felt an earlier date, along with making the event a Superbike doubleheader, was a positive step for the series. Also, the addition of RPM Productions as a promotional partner should help ensure continued growth of the event."

VIR co-owner Connie Lee Nyholm said that the return of the AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited was a welcome development.

"We couldn't be more pleased that we were able to put together an agreement with the AMA and RPM Productions to bring the Superbikes back to VIR," she said. "The Superbikes have delivered some of the best racing ever seen at VIR over the years, and the fans who turn out to support them have been fantastic. We can't wait to welcome them back, and we're looking forward to making the Suzuki Big Kahuna Nationals the best event on the circuit for years to come."

RPM Productions' Cameron Gray said that his company is thrilled with the opportunity to promote the Suzuki Big Kahuna Nationals at VIR, and the prospect of growing the event into the future.

"This is a great joint venture among ourselves, the AMA and VIR," Gray said. "AMA worked very hard to coordinate this effort, and Connie Nyholm and the VIR staff couldn't have been more gracious and flexible in working with us to establish the date we wanted. We're proud to be able to revive the Big Kahuna name, which we previously used when we promoted AMA Superbikes for five years at Road Atlanta, where we first introduced the concept of the Superbike double-header.

"VIR is an awesome facility, and we have big plans to make this the best and most fan-friendly event on the circuit," he added. "We are looking at Jumbotron screens, stunt shows, a 'Fan Night' and other amenities that will take the Suzuki Big Kahuna Nationals to the next level. In the future, we want to build on that and improve the experience for the fans so that it will be a permanent 'can't-miss' fixture on their annual calendars. We're really excited, and can't wait for August."

Tickets for the Suzuki Big Kahuna Nationals will go on sale April 1. VIR is a family-friendly facility, where children 12 and under are admitted free with a paying adult. Spectator camping is available.

VIRginia International Raceway is a multi-purpose road racing facility, located on the Dan River between Danville and South Boston, Va., and just north of historic Milton, N.C. In addition to its 3.27-mile natural-terrain road racing circuit (designed to be operated as two autonomous, full-service courses), VIR is the cornerstone of VIR Club, America's first motorsports country club; the VIR Raceplex Industrial Park; the VIR Gallery, which is a showroom for high-end collector and racing cars; the VIR Safety and Security Institute, which provides specialized training for U.S. Government and military groups; The Lodge at VIR, a 27-room hotel overlooking the track; and the Oak Tree Tavern, a full-service restaurant located within the circa-1840 Plantation Clubhouse.

VIR made history from 1957 to 1974 and is doing so again. The renovated original circuit has 17 challenging turns and 130 feet of elevation change. In addition to spectator events, the track is also available to rent for testing, driving schools and club days.

For more information, visit the track's website at www.virclub.com or contact VIR at 434-822-7700. For more information on the AMA Superbike Championship presented by Parts Unlimited, visit their website at www.ussuperbike.com.

-vir-

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