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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

ABC, ESPN ramp up for coverage of 2008 series schedule

By indycar.com staff
ESPN continues its longstanding relationship with the sanctioning Indy Racing League by providing television coverage of every IndyCar Series and Indy Pro Series race during the 2008 season.

The 16-race IndyCar Series season, including the 92nd Indianapolis 500, will be broadcast on ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC. The 2008 schedule, ESPN's 13th as the IndyCar Series television partner, includes seven events each on ABC and ESPN2 and two on ESPN. The networks also will cover Indianapolis 500 qualifying May 10-11 and 17-18. The Indy Pro Series broadcast schedule will be announced early in 2008.

"ABC and ESPN have played a significant role in the advancement of the IndyCar Series," said Terry Angstadt, president of the commercial division of the Indy Racing League. "With innovations, such as side-by-side and Sportvision, our broadcasts offer viewers a unique motorsports experience."

Click it: Printable schedule | Schedule wallpaper

The IndyCar Series season begins March 29 at Homestead-Miami Speedway with a prime-time telecast on ESPN2 at 8 p.m. (ET). The series concludes Sept. 7 at Chicagoland Speedway at 3:30 p.m. on ABC. The 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 airs May 25 at noon on ABC.

The ESPN alliance dates to the IndyCar Series' inaugural 1996 event. ABC's first telecast of the Indianapolis 500 was in 1965, a relationship that is the second-longest in sports between a network and sports property. Only CBS and The Masters have been together longer.

"We look forward to another exciting season of IndyCar Series racing on our networks," said John Wildhack, ESPN executive vice president, programming and acquisitions. "The series showed ratings growth in 2007 and we feel that the personalities of the drivers and the close, competitive racing are resonating with our viewers."

The 2008 IndyCar Series schedule (all times Eastern and reflect broadcast start time)

Date Venue Network Time
March 29 Homestead-Miami Speedway ESPN2 8 p.m.
April 6 Streets of St. Petersburg ESPN 2:30 p.m.
April 19 Twin Ring Motegi, Japan ESPN Noon
April 27 Kansas Speedway ESPN2 5 p.m.
May 25 Indianapolis Motor Speedway ABC Noon
June 1 The Milwaukee Mile ABC 4 p.m.
June 7 Texas Motor Speedway ESPN2 10 p.m.
June 22 Iowa Speedway          ABC 3 p.m.
June 28 Richmond International Raceway ESPN2 8 p.m.
July 6 Watkins Glen International ABC 3:30 p.m.
July 12 Nashville Superspeedway ESPN2 8 p.m.
July 20 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course ABC 1:30 p.m.
Aug. 9 Kentucky Speedway ESPN2 6:30 p.m.
Aug. 24 Infineon Raceway ESPN2 5:30 p.m.
Aug. 31 The Raceway at Belle Isle Park ABC 3:30 p.m.
Sep. 7 Chicagoland Speedway ABC 3:30 p.m.


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