With purse and plan money totalling $2.237million, American Le Mans Series racing teams were rewarded with payout increases of more than half a million dollars over those awarded after the 2002 season.

Purse monies of $1.607m were paid to race teams over the course of nine races - an increase of $561,000 over awards that were paid in 2002. The increase in payouts came even though the ALMS schedule included one less race in 2003.

In addition to race purses, cash awards of $630,000 will be distributed among the 30 eligible cars and 20 race teams that contractually committed to a full season of competition on the series through the IMSA Championship Incentive Programme, bringing the total payout to $2.237m. Thirty-two cars actually committed to a full season, but the two cars from the factory Chevrolet Corvette team were not eligible for purse awards.

"The professional and hard-working race teams in the American Le Mans Series are the best in the business and we are pleased that they were able to receive a substantial increase in purse payouts this season," said series president and CEO Scott Atherton, "To have had full-season commitments from 32 cars, and an average field of more than 37 cars for the season, is a very strong statement about the health of the American Le Mans Series. We very much appreciate the teams that raced with us in 2003 and are looking forward to continuing the momentum in 2004."

The 2004 season will begin with the 52nd annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring on 20 March.



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