More open wheel action than ever at the Edmonton Indy

Future stars of open-wheel racing will have a unique opportunity to display their talent in front of the 2011 Edmonton Indy crowd, as the July 22-24 event at City Centre Airport will feature two rounds of the Firestone Indy Lights Series (FIL). Octane Motorsports Events, promoter of Western Canada's major auto racing weekend, has also announced the return this year of the NASCC Eurasia GT Invitational and of the Canadian Drift Mania Championship programs.

"We are glad to host two rounds of the Firestone Indy Lights Series at this year's Edmonton Indy," said François Dumontier, President of Octane Motorsports Events. "Our spectators will get a real open-wheel racing treat, no less than 12 hours of track time with IndyCar and Indy Lights racing. It also guarantees the fans a maximum number of entries on the Indy Lights grid. With this doubleheader, coming to Edmonton is now very attractive for teams and drivers. There is going to be good money and lot of points to collect as they will get to challenge our new exciting course twice in one weekend," also said Dumontier. "Last year, only 13 cars made the field and adding more cars on the track for 2011 means more action for the fans!"

Hosting two rounds of a major open-wheel support series will not be a first for the Edmonton event. For two consecutive years, the Atlantic Championship ran a doubleheader over the weekend. Current AFS Racing car # 17 driver in the IZOD IndyCar Series, Brazilian Raphael Matos collected the two wins in 2007. Canadian James Hinchcliffe, who graduated this season to the IZOD IndyCar Series Newman-Haas Racing team, won last year's FIL race in Edmonton.

The 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series race will have three Canadian drivers on the grid – Hinchcliffe, Tagliani and Tracy. There has already been two young national hopefuls announced for the Firestone Indy Lights doubleheader including Mikael Grenier in the O2 Racing Technology car #63 (Québec City, Québec) and David Ostella in the Jensen MotorSport car #16 (Maple, Ontario). At 19, both drivers are in their rookie season in FIL and are respectively 7th and 8th in the standings. So far this year, Grenier earned one Top 5 and four Top 10 positions, while Ostella took one Top 5 and three Top 10 positions.

The NASCC Eurasia GT Invitational has been scheduled for Sunday morning again so Northern Alberta's sports car drivers will have the opportunity to race in front of the Edmonton Indy crowd. More than 50 cars and drivers in five categories will be on track for this popular race. Drift Mania Canadian Championship will also have the opportunity to try out the new design when these skilled drifters hit the track Friday and Saturday morning.

Tickets are available through the Edmonton Indy box office seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. at 1-855-350-INDY (4639), or online at First-class corporate packages and trackside suites are also available for both small and large companies and other groups who wish to attend the event. To make a reservation or to obtain further information on corporate packages, please contact Julie Rioux-Paquette at 1-855-350-4731.

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