CART cancels California event

CART has decided to cancel the final round of the Champ Car World Series at California Speedway, which was originally postponed because of major forest fires in the US state

CART cancels California event

The event at the two-mile superspeedway in Fontana was originally postponed on Tuesday because of the continuing spread of fires in the Southern California area, several of which are within miles of the track. However, CART boss Chris Pook has taken the decision to cancel the race after investigating a range of options, including running at another circuit.

"Our thoughts are with those families dealing with the disaster in Southern California and we hope for a speedy end to the situation," said Pook. "Our diligence in pursuing the continuation of the race was only to ensure that we had exhausted every option available to us.

"CART Champ Car regrets that the event has been cancelled and we offered to explore every possible avenue, including running the event on Monday or Tuesday at Phoenix International Raceway - which is owned by California Speedway's parent company International Speedway Corporation - or running at the California Speedway track sometime next week, allowing us to run this race in a safe manner and have a proper end to the 2003 season."

Assuming that the cancellation stands, it will put an end to the 2003 Champ Car World Series season at 18 races. Although this will have no bearing on the identity of the champion, Paul Tracy having wrapped up the title at Surfers Paradise, it does ensure that Bruno Junqueira will finish as runner-up ahead of Michel Jourdain Jr. The two were split by just four points following the last race.

The champion will be officially crowned next Tuesday at the CART Champ Car Awards Celebration in Palm Springs, California.

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