Andersen Promotions takes over license and operating rights from IndyCar for Indy Lights

  • Article by: JENNA FRYER , AP Auto Racing Writer
  • Updated: July 12, 2013 - 4:10 PM

TORONTO — IndyCar has given an outside organization the rights to operate its Indy Lights feeder series beginning in 2014.

The multi-year agreement announced Friday with Andersen Promotions gives the company all three rings in the "Mazda Road to Indy" ladder system. Andersen already owns and operates USF2000 and Star Mazda series.

"This is a positive move for our sport," said IndyCar President of competition Derrick Walker. "A strong and relevant training system is important to develop the next generation of IndyCar drivers."

The ladder system provides training for drivers and teams trying to make it to the IndyCar Series and Walker said tying the final step to the first two through Andersen will position Lights for faster growth and consistency among the three ladder divisions.

Andersen will direct on-track activity while using IndyCar personnel, and will be the primary contact for business, marketing and promotional operations.

Indy Lights is expected to run up to 12 races a year, with 10 as companions to IndyCar.

IndyCar will work with its television partners on broadcast continuity and will continue to support the scholarship for the Lights champion to move up to IndyCar.

One of the biggest challenges will be increasing car counts in the Lights series, which had just eight drivers run the last three events. The May race at Indianapolis had a season-high 11 drivers in the field. It's a far cry from the heyday of the series that produced many of today's current IndyCar drivers.

"I think it's tough seeing it at Pocono when there's eight cars running around a two-and-a-half mile circuit, they were separated by 20 or 15 seconds," said 2000 Lights champion Scott Dixon. "Back a while ago when we raced in that series, it was very competitive. You had full fields of 25-odd cars, sometimes more. It's a great feeder series. Hopefully they run it strong."

Dan Andersen, owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions, admitted there are several challenges facing the series and increasing participation.

"Some people think it's purely a cost challenge, we need to reduce costs," Andersen said. "But I actually don't think that's the major issue. I think the cost is not far off where it should be for a proper development step.

"The most important thing we need to do is regain the interest in the ladder, and we need to do that via changes to the car, changes to the way we produce the whole series — mainly PR and marketing worldwide."

Andersen said manufacturers Mazda and Honda both have interest in supporting the series from a sponsorship aspect — an important development if Lights can secure an engine partner. He's also eyeing a new car for the series by 2015, which could make next season the most challenging for Indy Lights.

"Implementing a new car may take more than a one year to fully do," Andersen said. "As we have ideas in mind that the current car will not be run as is for next year, but it will likely be run in some form with some updates to it. The new car will encourage a lot of participation in 2015. I'd like to see us at 15 cars or more for next year. I'd like to see us at 20 cars or more the year after that.

"I think it's totally doable. If we enlist another four to six team owners, we've solved our problem."

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Mets 3 FINAL
St. Louis 2
Pittsburgh 4 FINAL
Atlanta 2
Miami 7 FINAL
Washington 11
Detroit 4 FINAL
Philadelphia 4
Minnesota 6 FINAL
Baltimore 5
NY Yankees 7 FINAL
Houston 0
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL
Boston 3
Baltimore 4 FINAL
Toronto 2
Cincinnati 8 FINAL
LA Angels 6
Chicago Cubs 7 FINAL
Kansas City 0
Los Angeles 9 FINAL
San Francisco 11
Chicago WSox 4 FINAL
Cleveland 1
Milwaukee 0 FINAL
Oakland 7
Seattle 5 FINAL
San Diego 8
Texas 5 FINAL
Los Angeles 10
Colorado 11 FINAL
Arizona 10
Arizona 1 FINAL
Colorado 2
Houston 99 FINAL
Washington 91
LA Lakers 99 FINAL
Brooklyn 107
Minnesota 88 FINAL
New Orleans 110
Philadelphia 86 FINAL
Cleveland 87
Detroit 102 FINAL
Miami 109
LA Clippers 119 FINAL
Boston 106
Dallas 99 FINAL
Indiana 104
Memphis 89 FINAL
San Antonio 103
Oklahoma City 109 FINAL
Phoenix 97
Washington 5 FINAL
NY Rangers 2
Calgary 5 FINAL
Nashville 2
Boston 2 FINAL(OT)
Carolina 1
Detroit 4 FINAL
NY Islanders 5
Florida 4 FINAL
Ottawa 2
Anaheim 2 FINAL
New Jersey 1
Chicago 4 FINAL
Winnipeg 3
San Jose 2 FINAL(SO)
Pittsburgh 3
Michigan State 76 FINAL
Louisville 70
Gonzaga 52 FINAL
Duke 66
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Chicago 1
Toronto FC 1 FINAL
Real Salt Lake 2
(7) Florida State 74 FINAL
(3) South Carolina 80
Villanova 70 FINAL
West Virginia 75
Michigan 69 FINAL
Southern Miss 60
Temple 69 FINAL
Middle Tennessee 57
Siena 50 FINAL
Louisiana 52
St Marys-CA 66 FINAL
UCLA 82
(5) Baylor 68 FINAL
(2) Notre Dame 77
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close