European races face the axe

Champ Car's European races in Britain and Germany may face the chop as CART looks at slimming down its 2004 calendar, according to this week's AUTOSPORT Magazine. The Milwaukee Mile looks set to be the only oval race to survive the schedule overhaul

European races face the axe

Brands Hatch, EuroSpeedway Lausitz and Fontana look likely to go as the cash-strapped series faces the prospect of slashing its rounds from 20 to 16. CART wants to concentrate its resources on the most profitable events.

Most teams and drivers have responded well to the idea. Owner-driver Adrian Fernandez reckons a shift to running on only road and street courses will give the championship a stronger identity.

"We've only got three oval races this year, so I don't see it as a big deal if we go to all road racing," he said. "It wouldn't bother my sponsors and it wouldn't be confusing: the IRL runs on ovals and we road race. I think it would be better for CART."

Team owner and ex-series boss Bobby Rahal insists the traditional Mid-Ohio and Elkhart Lake races must keep their races next year, no matter how serious CART's financial state.

"Mid-Ohio and Elkhart Lake are the crown jewels of the series and it would be a crime for us not to be in those places," he said.



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