2006 Champ Car Schedule

We hear that the 2006 Champ Car schedule should be released on Monday August 1st, at least that is the plan right now. Champ Car is busy putting the finishing touches on the details and marrying the schedule with available TV inventory on CBS and SPEED Channel. The good news for the teams is that an early release of the schedule will help them to immediately begin soliciting potential sponsors for 2006 before Fiscal Year 2006 budgets are finalized. Many sponsors want to know what markets they will get exposure in and what the domestic and international TV package looks like. We hear the international TV package won't be finalized until later, but that it should include TV coverage in China, something that never happened for 2005. What the series is seriously lacking right now for the two Asian races (China and South Korea) are drivers who the local fans can identify with, as well as a series name (Champ Car) that is unknown to 99.99999% of the population. If they hope to have any success in those two markets they are going to have to find drivers from those two countries. Marchy Lee is one driver that can probably handle a Champ Car, but he is from Hong Kong. Although Hong Kong is now part of China, the Beijing government still prefers a driver from mainland China. From our perspective, if Marchy Lee is ready, he should get a ride in 2006 while Champ Car grooms a driver from mainland China for 2007 and beyond. As for a South Korean driver, we have not heard any names rise to the surface yet, and that can be a problem. There are some in Formula BMW (Asia) and Formula 3.

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