Honda F1 website

MARCH 23, 2006

George and Kalkhoven admit merger talks

Indy Racing League founder Tony George and Champ Car's Kevin Kalkhoven are now finally admitting that they are talking about merging the two self-destructive championships to create a single entity to challenge the ever-increasing dominance of NASCAR in the United States market. Their success or failure will also impact on Formula 1 as it could make open-wheeler racing much more popular in the US. The two men told the LA Times that they were looking for a way to make a fresh start with brand new equipment and the best elements of both series. The two men say that this is not going to be easy to achieve and that no settlement is coming in the short term.

There are also implications in the F1 engine supply world as Kalkhoven is owner of Cosworth Racing, which he acquired in order to safeguard the engine supply of Champ Car. A merged series might well make that investment less crucial and so Cosworth could go up for sale.