CHAMPCAR/CART: 2005 schedule announced

Champ Car Announces 14 Dates for Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford 2005 Schedule INDIANAPOLIS (October 28, 2004) -- The end of the 2004 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season is ...

Champ Car Announces 14 Dates for Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford 2005 Schedule

INDIANAPOLIS (October 28, 2004) -- The end of the 2004 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season is rapidly approaching with just one week left before the season finale in Mexico City.

But in auto racing, the end of one season simply signals the beginning of a new one, and the Champ Car World Series today marked the start of the 2005 season with the announcement of 14 race dates for next year.

The current schedule features events on three continents and five countries as the worldwide appeal of the premier open-wheel racing series in North America continues to grow. The calendar features seven races in the United States, three in Canada, two in Mexico and one each in Australia and Korea. It gets underway on April 10 at Long Beach, where the 2004 season opener drew 170,000 fans for the three-day event, and closes with a November 6 event in Mexico City.

"This is a schedule that really shows the international flavor of our series, and is one that we think will make our teams, sponsors and fans very happy," said Champ Car President and CEO Dick Eidswick. "In our last race, drivers from seven nations were among the top eight finishers and it is diversity like that which helps broaden our appeal and makes our series attractive throughout the world. We believe that this year's schedule will develop awareness of Champ Car even further."

The 2005 schedule welcomes three new events to the Champ Car World Series. Edmonton, Alberta, Canada will host its first Champ Car race on July 17, running on a temporary airport course similar to the one used for the Champ Car Grand Prix of Cleveland. The series will also travel to Ansan, Korea for a race on October 17. In addition, a race will be held in California's Silicon Valley on July 31.

"We're very pleased with the interest we have gotten from venues around the world and the fact that we have added three new venues speaks to the strength and attractiveness of the Champ Car product and we believe that the ones that are currently on the schedule provided Champ Car with the highest potential for long-term growth," said Champ Car Vice-President of Development, Governmental Affairs and Planning Joe Chrnelich. "We are in discussions with other potential new venues for the future as well as we strive to build the best series possible for our teams, sponsors and fans."

Consequently, this schedule may see some other additions before the beginning of the 2005 season. The outcome of these negotiations will determine the final number of races on the 2005 schedule.

The new venues are liberally mixed with a number of long-running events on the Champ Car calendar. Long Beach returns for its 22nd year on the Champ Car schedule, while Cleveland will host the turbocharged Champ Cars for the 24th time, moving up a week from the Fourth-of-July weekend where it had run the last two seasons.

The venerable Milwaukee Mile will again see the Champ Cars in early June as it has for 56 of the last 57 years, while teams will battle through the Festival Curves of Portland International Raceway for the 22nd consecutive season. Toronto will celebrate its 20th anniversary of Champ Cars this year and Surfers Paradise, Australia will look to keep the longest streak of different race winners in the series alive for the 15th straight year.

Successful recent additions to the Champ Car calendar such as Denver, Montreal, Monterrey, Mexico and Mexico City will also return to the schedule as will Las Vegas, which hosted the Champ Cars in front of 80,000 fans in September.

-ccws-

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Series IndyCar