IPS: IRL: Indy Racing statement on Infiniti changes

INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, June 14, 2002 -- The Infiniti Division of Nissan North America, Inc. announced June 14 that it will concentrate its 2003 Indy Racing League program in the new Infiniti Pro Series, which begins competition next...

INDIANAPOLIS, Friday, June 14, 2002 -- The Infiniti Division of Nissan North America, Inc. announced June 14 that it will concentrate its 2003 Indy Racing League program in the new Infiniti Pro Series, which begins competition next month.

Infiniti will discontinue providing engines to the Indy Racing League at the end of the 2002 season. Infiniti will continue to support the IRL program for the rest of this season.

"We appreciate the many significant contributions that Infiniti has made to the Indy Racing League and appreciate its continued support of the exciting, new Infiniti Pro Series, which will be an outstanding showcase for its products and some of the top young talent in racing," said Tony George, Indy Racing League president and CEO. "With Chevrolet, Honda and Toyota supplying engines to the Indy Racing League and Infiniti providing strong support to the Infiniti Pro Series, the league is set for continued growth in 2003."

Infiniti began providing engines to the series in 1997, the first year of the normally aspirated formula. Eddie Cheever Jr. has recorded two victories for the engine, one each in 2000 and 2001, and Cheever and rookie teammate Tomas Scheckter each have earned one MBNA Pole with Infiniti power this season.

The decision to focus on the Infiniti Pro Series was made after a careful review of Nissan's motorsports program and the corporation's goals. Nissan decided to continue to support motorsports activities that feature Nissan products, like the Infiniti Pro Series program.

Nissan supplies stock engines used in its Q45 luxury sedan to TWR, which makes racing modifications for use in the Infiniti Pro Series. Those engines then are sold to teams competing in the series.

The Infiniti V8 engines will produce approximately 450 horsepower for the single-seat winged Dallara chassis using Firestone tires, providing an ideal training ground for the 650-horsepower, single-seat winged cars of the Indy Racing League.

The inaugural season of the Infiniti Pro Series will begin July 7 at Kansas Speedway and culminate with the Sept. 14 season finale at Texas Motor Speedway.

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About this article
Series IndyCar , Indy Lights
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Eddie Cheever , Tony George