CHAMPCAR/CART: Las Vegas procedure changes

With the Double in the Desert taking over Las Vegas Motor Speedway's 1.5-mile oval this weekend, Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford competitors have to work within a very structured schedule. There ought to be a fair...

With the Double in the Desert taking over Las Vegas Motor Speedway's 1.5-mile oval this weekend, Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford competitors have to work within a very structured schedule. There ought to be a fair bit of "dancing" to accommodate both series.

The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series takes to the track tomorrow night for its Las Vegas 350 at 7PM and the Champ Cars will perform their Bridgestone 400 Presented by Corona immediately following the Craftsman Truck race.

For that reason Champ Car officials must make modifications to participant procedures and have outlined the following rules changes to facilitate an orderly process:

The Bridgestone 400 Presented by Corona takes the green flags at the conclusion of the Las Vegas 350, once the track surface has been cleared and cleaned of as much Goodyear rubber as possible.

The race is scheduled for 166 laps (249 miles) and this will not be a timed race, Champ Car officials stated.

In addition, the series will return to the use of pit stop intervals for this race only, with mandatory gaps of 37 laps during the Bridgestone 400. "Any car that does not pit in the required interval will be flagged," Champ Car declared.

There will be only one way to get around this single race procedure. "Should the pits be closed when a competitor has reached the maximum number of laps allowed before a pit stop must be made, the competitor must enter the pit lane on the first lap when the pit lane is declared open and the competitor is eligible to pit.

"Should the race end on the same lap when a competitor has reached their maximum pit stop lap interval, that competitor will be allowed to remain on the track for the final race lap," the competition bulletin issued today by Lee Dykstra, director of technology stated.

With the preliminary practice session completed, most teams have been working on qualifying setups, even though their attempts will be made under different climactic conditions than those experienced from 12:15-2PM PDT this afternoon. They'll work on their race setups during the evening practice, which takes place from 8-9:30PM tonight.

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Series IndyCar