Newman/Haas/Lanigan, PKV, Forsythe, Walker and Conquest are all expected to take advantage of Indy chief Tony George's offer for free cars and a $1.2m stipend to join the series, while several other teams, including Minardi Team USA, have reportedly yet to decide. The addition of the Champ Car teams to the 16 cars already in the IRL would make it the biggest field in years.
The conflict between the Champ Car race at Long Beach and the IRL event at Motegi, Japan, is reportedly being resolved, with Motegi possibly moving dates. Tony George, the prefect of IRL, is said to be considering adding several other Champ Car events – including Edmonton, Canada, and Surfer's Paradise, Australia – to bring the combined 2008 schedule up to 19 races, with other Champ Car venues such as Toronto and Mexico City under consideration for 2009. An official announcement could come as early as tomorrow when Champ Car chief Kevin Kalkhoven returns from England, and if confirmed, the move could stand to bring open-wheel racing in America back to the pinnacle.