CART officials today announced the cancellation of the Champ Car series' traditional mid-summer stop at Road America. The Wisconsin track, long a favorite for drivers and fans alike, is one of the oldest races on the CART calendar. The beautiful...
CART officials today announced the cancellation of the Champ Car series' traditional mid-summer stop at Road America. The Wisconsin track, long a favorite for drivers and fans alike, is one of the oldest races on the CART calendar. The beautiful road circuit, also known by the name of nearby resort town, Elkhart Lake, has hosted Champ Car races each year since 1982.
Recent moves by CART have hinted at the possibility of cancellation. Last November, the 2003 Road America event was moved from the traditional date in late August to the first weekend of the month, ostensibly to get better television coverage for the event, a move that required Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course to move their traditional date back one week to August 17th. Then, in February, Mid-Ohio canceled their move and announced a return to their original August 10th date.
Most telling was CART's February filing of a suit against the track to recover the final payment of the sanctioning fee for the 2002 event and for payment of the first installment of the 2003 fee. In a statement today, CART said that the organizers had rejected a proposal to restructure the sanctioning agreement and had not paid the disputed fees. As a result, CART "regretfully" removed the race from their schedule.
While CART did promise to consider reinstatement of the date, their words were not encouraging. "In the future Champ Car would consider returning to the storied Wisconsin race circuit providing a satisfactory and professionally responsible business arrangement can be reached with an appropriate race promoter," read today's statement.
Road America officials have yet to comment on CART's action.