One of the Champ Car World Series most popular and iconic events is set to remain a fixture for the next five years, following a new agreement between race officials and the city council.

For 26 years, the shores of Lake Erie have come alive each summer to the sounds of the Grand Prix of Cleveland at Burke Lakefront Airport, and Cleveland mayor Frank Jackson and Grand Prix officials confirmed this week that the tradition will continue thanks to a new five-year agreement taking the event through to the 2012 season. The 2008 event, the first under the new agreement, will take place over the weekend of 20-22 June according to the recently-released CCWS calendar.

"The Grand Prix is a significant annual event for the City of Cleveland, a popular attraction that puts Cleveland on the world stage and delivers an annual economic impact of some $30 million," the mayor revealed.

The Grand Prix entered an exciting new era prior to the 2006 event, when Mi-Jack Promotions and chairman Michael T Lanigan were announced as the its new promoters and, with financial security and a fresh approach under new ownership, experienced a revitalisation, with renewed fan support, increased corporate sponsorships and a number of new 'fan-friendly' attractions. In 2007, attendance increased 31 per cent - to 151,426 - signalling a return to glory for the Grand Prix. Grand Prix officials, however, are optimistic that the future looks even brighter.

"We are very proud to be carrying on the great traditions of the Grand Prix of Cleveland," Lanigan admitted, "Our primary focus has been the great fans of north-east Ohio, and we believe that we have accomplished our goal of providing them with a tremendous weekend experience that the entire family could enjoy. We are also appreciative of the tremendous support from the north-east Ohio community, including our corporate sponsors, the fans, Cuyahoga County, mayor Jackson and the city of Cleveland."

"The Grand Prix of Cleveland is one of the cornerstone events of the Champ Car World Series, and we are very pleased to be returning to Burke Lakefront Airport for the 27th consecutive year," concluded Champ Car CEO and president Steve Johnson, "We thank mayor Jackson for his leadership and vision, and look forward to working closely with Mike Lanigan and his team in conducting another crowd-pleasing event in Cleveland next year."

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