Long Beach: Noteworthy, schedule

NOTEWORTHY * Officials from the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach announced last week that Argent Mortgage Company has signed-on to be the title sponsor of the second round of the 2003 CART Toyota Atlantic Championship. The event being run...

NOTEWORTHY

* Officials from the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach announced last week that Argent Mortgage Company has signed-on to be the title sponsor of the second round of the 2003 CART Toyota Atlantic Championship. The event being run in conjunction with the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach will be known as the Argent Mortgage Company Toyota Atlantic Race. Argent Mortgage Company also serves as the primary sponsor on the #24 Team Rahal machine being driven by rookie Danica Patrick.

* Pacific Coast Motorsports driver Alex Figge, as well as his team, transporter, and the #69 Pacific Coast Motorsports/Patrick Racing Swift 014.a will visit Meadows Elementary School in Manhattan Beach, Calif. on Tuesday, April 8 at 3:30 p.m. PT. Figge and the team will sign autographs and participate in a question and answer session with the students from grades one to five, and the students will also be provided with various souvenirs from the California-based team as well as the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship. "I'm looking forward to meeting with all the kids," said Figge. "I think it will be a lot of fun, and hopefully a few of them will be cheering for me on Sunday."

* This weekend's Argent Mortgage Company Toyota Atlantic Race marks the 20th time that the CART Toyota Atlantic Championship has raced at the glamorous street circuit. The first race for the series at Long Beach was held in conjunction with the Formula 1 event in 1978 and was won by future Champ Car competitor Howdy Holmes. Other notable winners of Atlantic events at Long Beach include Tom Gloy (1979-80), who went on to become a champion in Trans-Am, future Champ Car driver and IMSA GTP champion Geoff Brabham (1981-82), and future Champ Car competitors Hiro Matsushita (1989), '96 Champ Car champion Jimmy Vasser (1991), Richie Hearn (1994), Alex Tagliani (1997 and '99), and Memo Gidley (1998). Among the drivers who have won pole positions for Atlantic events at Long Beach are three-time Champ Car champion Bobby Rahal (1978), eventual Champ Car race winner Kevin Cogan (1979), future Champ Car competitors and IMSA champions Brabham (1981) and Willy T. Ribbs (1982), two-time Champ Car race winner Scott Goodyear (1989), '96 Champ Car champion Vasser (1991), 1995 Champ Car titlist and '97 Formula One World Champion Jacques Villeneuve (1993), '99 Indy Racing League champion Greg Ray (1994), and eventual Champ Car driver Richie Hearn (1995).

Argent Mortgage Company Toyota Atlantic Race/Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach
Long Beach, Calif.
Friday-Sunday, April 11-13.

CART TOYOTA ATLANTIC CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE (All times local):

FRIDAY, APRIL 11
Practice, 8:45 - 9:15 a.m.
First-round qualifying, 1:45 - 2:15 p.m.

SATURDAY, MARCH 22
Practice, 9:15 - 9:45 a.m.
Final qualifying, 3:00 - 3:30 p.m.

SUNDAY, MARCH 23
Warm-up, 8:00 - 8:15 a.m.
Tecate/Telmex Monterrey Grand Prix, 10:30 - 11:30 a.m.

U.S. TELEVISION SCHEDULE:
SUNDAY, MARCH 23
SPEED Channel, Argent Mortgage Company Toyota Atlantic Race/Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, 1:30 p.m. ET (Live).

-cart/atlantic-

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About this article
Series Atlantic
Drivers Jacques Villeneuve , Greg Ray , Scott Goodyear , Jimmy Vasser , Memo Gidley , Bobby Rahal , Alex Tagliani , Richie Hearn , Willy T. Ribbs , Alex Figge , Tom Gloy , Howdy Holmes , Kevin Cogan , Geoff Brabham , Danica Patrick