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AUGUST 2, 2004

Meanwhile, somewhere else

Although Formula 1 is now on holiday for a few days, a lot of other racing series have been busy around the world with the Indy Racing League in action at Michigan International Speedway, Formula Nippon at Sugo, the Eurocup Formula 3 teams busy at the Nurburgring, and the Renault V6 Eurocup and European Formula Renault championships at Spa.

At Michigan Rahal Letterman Racing's Buddy Rice beat championship leader Tony Kanaan by 0.079s to score his third victory of the year. This equals Kanaan's total of wins this year and means that Rice has closed on Kanaan in the championship. Dan Wheldon, Kanaan's team mate and the other man in the running for the championship was third ahead of Marlboro Team Penske's Sam Hornish Jr and Rice's team mate Vitor Meira. In Japan Formula Nippon champion Satoshi Motoyama strengthened his position in this year's championship with victory at Sugo. The 5Zigen driver finished 20 seconds ahead of Takashi Kogure (PIAA Nakajima) while Juichi Wakisaka (Le Mans Company) held off Richard Lyons (DoCoMo Dandelion) to take the third slot on the grid. Lyons retains his lead in the championship from Andre Lotterer (PIAA Nakajima), who did not score at Sugo, but Motoyama now moves to third in the championship, just six points behind Lyons.

At Spa Neel Jani won one of the two Renault V6 races for the DAMS team but in the second event victory went to Ryan Sharp (Jenzer Motorsport). The result keeps the Scotsman in with a chance of the championship although the series is still led by Andrea Belicchi (AFC Motorsport) with Giorgio Mondini (Eurointernational) in second position. Jani is fourth but his recent run of success means that he is still a challenger for the title. In the supporting Formula Renault Eurocup race American Scott Speed continued his good form with a lights-to-flag victory. Speed increases his lead in the championship and is now close to securing the title.

At the Nurburgring Jamie Green took revenge for Saturday's victory by Nico Rosberg with a dominant display after beating Rosberg and fellow front row man Poland's Robert Kubica (Mucke Motorsport) away at the start. Kubica finished the race in second place with Rosberg third. It was Green's fourth win and his 10th podium in 14 races and he now has an even stronger lead in the championship.