Nov 26, 2009

Brazil to open 2010 IndyCar season

One of the worst kept secrets is out: The IndyCar Series will start its 2010 season in Sao Paulo, Brazil, that is already home to Formula One's Brazilian Grand Prix.

The IndyCar's first venture into the South American country happens with a street race on Mar. 14. The race will mark the first time the series has begun its season outside the U.S. The 2010 IndyCar schedule has 17 races.

The deal was rumoured for almost two years. No details on the venue have been made public.

It is not the first time a U.S.-based series heads to Brazil after the old Championship Auto Racing Teams ran the Rio 400 a couple of times in the late 1990s.

The move will also cash in on the popularity of the series' high profile Brazilian drivers in the series: three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves, 2004 IndyCar Series champion Tony Kanaan, veteran driver Vitor Meira, the 2009 Rookie of the Year Raphael Matos, and Sao Paulo native Mario Moraes.

The news comes only days after Indy Racing League vice-president of public relations John Griffin submitted his resignation effective Dec. 18. No replacement has been named.

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