Champ Car announces Triple Crown
Champ Car drivers and teammates Will Power and Simon Pagenaud announced today in the “Great White North” that the open-wheel racing series’ nine teams will compete in a first-ever team showdown during the upcoming Champ Car World Series three-event July swing through Canada.
Officially dubbed the “Champ Car Canadian Triple Crown,” the team competition will pit teams against each other over the three successive Canadian races, beginning this week in Mont-Tremblant (July 1), continuing next week in Toronto (July 8) and concluding on July 22 in Edmonton. The standings for the Triple Crown will be based on the combined average finish for each team.
“A Champ Car Triple Crown competition in Canada will be a fun way to draw extra attention to this country’s three great events, and of course as drivers we’re all for anything that involves more competition against each other,” said Power, who joined Team Australia teammate Pagenaud this morning in both Montreal and Mont-Tremblant to announce the competition to the media. “I don’t know about the other drivers, but I know that I will be quite happy if Simon finishes exactly one spot behind me in all three races, and we share the podium each and every time.”
Added Frenchman Pagenaud: “I like our chances. Team Australia has a great team manager in Rob Edwards, a great crew and Will’s not a bad driver to pair up with. Those two Newman/Haas/Lanigan boys will be a tough duo to beat, and so will Tag and Justin, and Oriol and Paul Tracy, who of course will be a big favorite here in Canada.”
Power and Pagenaud currently are third and eighth, respectively, in the Champ Car World Series points standings, while Newman/Haas/Lanigan teammates Sebastian Bourdais and Graham Rahal are first and seventh. Other teams to watch are Alex Tagliani and Justin Wilson, driving for RSPORTS and currently fourth and fifth, respectively, in the standings, and Oriol Servia (sixth) and recent Cleveland champion Paul Tracy (tenth).
“Our three events in Canada are very important to us and we wanted to make them even more special this year,” said Champ Car President and CEO Steve Johnson. “We have a strong base of very loyal Champ Car fans throughout the entire country and over the next three races the Canadian Triple Crown will add another interesting element to the media coverage and fan interest.”
The team averaging the best finishing position during the Champ Car Canadian Triple Crown events will receive an Inuit Stone Carving representing their status as winners of the inaugural team competition. This type of stone carving is rooted in the ancient past of the native Canadian Inuit tribe. In addition to the traditional stone carving, the winning team will be treated to an array of Canadian-themed rewards.
The Canadian Triple Crown also features a diverse selection of race courses, thereby showcasing the drivers with a range of driving skills. Beginning on Canada Day with the Champ Car Mont-Tremblant, the first leg will feature a new circuit for the competitors in the Champ Car World Series. The 2.65-mile permanent road course in picturesque Quebec last played host to a Champ Car event in 1968. The second round of the team showcase will be contested just one week later at the Steelback Grand Prix of Toronto held at Exhibition Place in the shadows of the Princes’ Gate. This year marks the 22nd event held on the 1.755-mile temporary street circuit which has seen a litany of Champ Car greats on the top step of the podium. The third and final leg will be held at City Centre Airport in Edmonton, Alberta, a temporary circuit that uses runways and taxiways normally reserved for jet aircraft. The Champ Car Grand Prix of Edmonton averages more than 200,000 fans in attendance each year.
All three events of the Canadian Triple Crown will be broadcast live on Global in Canada and ESPN in the United States. The Champ Car Canadian Triple Crown events begin Sunday, July 1 at 2:00 p.m. ET and will continue on Sunday, July 8 at 1:00 pm ET with the final leg airing at 3:00 pm ET on Sunday, July 22.