[Source: INDYCAR press release]
INDYCAR announced today that the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series schedule will remain at 15 races.
INDYCAR was exploring a potential replacement event after it announced June 13 that its inaugural race in China, scheduled for Aug. 19, had been canceled.
“After carefully considering all possible options for an additional race, we felt it was in our best interest to keep our schedule at its current 15-event lineup,” said Randy Bernard, CEO, INDYCAR. “We want to make sure that when we add events to our roster they have long-term potential and are given every opportunity to be successfully promoted. The more we explored, the more we felt like we were rushing what could be good, long-lasting opportunities for the sport.
“I thank all of the promoters who entertained the possibility of hosting the IZOD IndyCar Series this season. It certainly validated what we already knew – there’s a lot of interest from venues across North America in hosting our sport.”
Series entitlement sponsor IZOD, a Heritage Brand in the PVH Corp. portfolio, supports the decision to cap the 2012 schedule at 15 events.
“As the entitlement partner of the series, we agree that it is in the best interest of the series to focus on a long-term strategy for the future schedule instead of a quick fix for this year,” said Mike Kelly, Executive Vice President, The PVH Marketing Group.
The 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season finale will be held Sept. 15 at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, Calif. Officials announced today that the race distance will be extended to 500 miles. Auto Club Speedway last played host to a 500-mile Indy car race in 2002, which was won by Jimmy Vasser.
“We wanted to do something special to enhance the excitement to the season finale and renew the tradition of 500-mile open-wheel races in Southern California,” said Bernard. ”We think it’s something our fans will enjoy and adds another element to what is already shaping up to be an exciting championship battle.”