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Purnell challenges future constructors

Tony PurnellTony Purnell has challenged the world's leading automotive and aerospace firms to use the next generation of the IndyCar Series to prove their skills.

Purnell was one of seven members of the IRL's ICONIC (Innovative, Competitive, Open-Wheel, New, Industry-Relevant, Cost-Effective) advisory panel that today announced open aerodynamic regulations for the series' future, based around a spec Dallara chassis to be introduced in 2012.

Constructors and teams will be allowed to create their own aero kits, including front and rear wings, sidepods and engine covers.

"Come on Ford, GM, Lotus, Ferrari. Come on Lockheed Martin, Boeing, General Electric. Come on you engineers working in your garage or in small shops," Purnell said.

"We've done our best to provide a framework for all of you to showcase your technical prowess without a need for a major raid on your piggy banks. We want you guys involved, all of you."

Indy 500 winner and current team boss Gil de Ferran was another member of the committee and is confident that the rules will help the series to flourish.

"This unique and groundbreaking concept embraces innovation and competition, very much in keeping with IndyCar traditions, while at the same time achieving the impossible - reducing the cost of entry and competition," said de Ferran.

"By the use of standard parts and supply rules, the IndyCar Series ensures the cost is under control and teams have access to the latest and greatest. By encouraging multiple manufacturers to supply bodywork parts and, essentially, brand the cars, IndyCar brings in the innovation and competition many of us were looking for."

Current championship leader Will Power was also supportive of the plan for the future: "I'm very exicted, I don't think you could have asked for anything better," he said

"The car is going to be lighter and faster, and it entinces other manufacturers to come in. I think it's the best direction we could have gone in - the committee did a great job. I'm looking forward to driving it, especially with more horsepower and it being lighter. It's going to be fun."

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