Champ Car drivers ready for Belgian challenge

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Today, all the Champ Car drivers were present during the official press conference of the Belgian Grand Prix at Zolder. The drivers and media gathered in the buildings of Autoworld at the 'Parc du Cinquantenaire' in the heart of Brussels. Of course, F1Technical was present as well.

At 11:00AM, the presentation of the Belgian Champ Car Grand Prix started in the buildings of Autoworld, in the heart of Brussels. Immediately you notice the difference between the world of Formula One, that is very reserved, and the relaxing, open atmosphere that dominates Champ Car.

The drivers were brought to Brussels in a VIP bus and from the moment they stepped out of the bus until the moment they got back in, you notice that this group of men really is a group of friends. The atmosphere between all of the drivers is really relaxing and it appeared that they were on a daytrip among friends.

Of course, most of the attention from the presswent to the two biggest stars of Champ Car, Sebastien Bourdais and Robert Doornbos. Jan Heylen, the Belgian who drives for Conquest Racing, was also wanted by the press as this is his home GP.

Robert Doornbos is for the moment second in the standings. For the Dutchman the Belgian GP also feels like a home race as he expects to see a lot of his fans. Doornbos said: "It's amazing that this weekend the Belgian Grand Prix will finally be driven. We have made a lot of publicity for the event. Last weekend I was in Rotterdam at RaceSalon and I had a streetdemo with my Champ Car in front of 500.000 fans during the Bavaria City Racing. Everybody was extremely enthusiastic so I hope to welcome a lot of fans this weekend.

It would be amazing for me to win one of the two events, here in Zolder or next week at Assen, in front of all my fans. I'm really looking forward to it."

Sebastien Bourdais is battling for his fourth title in Champ Car before he'll leave the series to race for Toro Rosso in F1 during the 2008 season. He said: "Of course it would be amazing to finish this season with a fourth title, but the road is still long. We still have 5 races to go and there are still a lot of points to win.

I'm really pleased to be here in Europe and I hope that the fans will enjoy a spectacular weekend. I hope to collect a lot of points here and than the weekend will be a success. I hope to have a great time."

Jan Heylen will be racing his home GP this weekend. He said: "I can't wait for the weekend to start. I have been here since Wednesday and it has been incredibly busy, lots of interviews and media work.

They are expecting really nice weather for the weekend so I hope that this will bring the fans out. Everybody knows Formula One in Belgium, but I think we're bringing a great show over from America so everybody just has to come and check it out.

Of course it's really special for me to come here and race at Zolder. The last time I was racing at Zolder was with the 24hours and we won that race, so I hope everything will go just as well for me on Sunday."

Meindert van Buuren the organiser of the Belgian Champ Car Grand Prix said: "When I'm here, surrounded by all these talented drivers from America and from Europe, I feel very happy because it's a lot of hard work to put everything together, to get everyone enthusiastic in Belgium for Champ Car.

Among the 'die hard' motorsport fans everybody knows Champ Car, but among the big public it's difficult to let people understand that Champ Car is much more exciting than F1. So we hope that everybody has a nice weekend and that we have good sales."

After the presentation of the drivers, with the exception of Katherine Legge who stayed in the hotel as she was feeling a bit sick, the drivers made time for the press and of course for the fans.

Tickets for the Belgian Champ Car Grand Prix are still available!

Pictures of the press conference will be online as soon as possible