Sports listings / Plan Ahead

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The Independent Online
LAST year's IndyCar championship was won at the final race, at Laguna Seca on the picturesque Monterey peninsula in California, where Bobby Rahal pipped Michael Andretti and Al Unser Jnr for the title. A repeat is possible this year, now that Nigel Mansell has been overtaken in the standings by Emerson Fittipaldi.

Mansell, however, will have learned from the calamities of Toronto last weekend and though the Penske-Chevrolets of Fittipaldi and Paul Tracy, the winner in Canada, may be proving more than a match for Mansell's Lola-Ford, he will feel at home at Laguna Seca.

The Raceway, on the outskirts of Monterey, is a road circuit, not unlike those Mansell has driven in Formula One. Built in rolling countryside, the winding track has steep inclines and changes in camber. All the grandstands are at the start, but the cars disappear from view over the hill at the first turn. Standing at the second turn offers the best view of the circuit from its lofty position. The super-admission price, which must be booked in advance, allows spectators into the paddock, where the cars can be scrutinised.

Airtrack Services Ltd, of Uxbridge, offers a seven-night fly / drive tour based in Monterey at pounds 925 per person. The car hire is not essential but a bonus with San Francisco 100 miles to the north. Page & Moy's package includes five nights in San Francisco, with coach transfer to Laguna Seca on race day. The tour price is pounds 659 from the Leicester operator. Motor Racing International, of Sandwich, is likely to add the last race to its list of IndyCar packages.

Admission to the Raceway is extra and admission including Grandstand seats starts at pounds 45, valid for the qualifying on Saturday and Sunday's race.

PPG IndyCar World Series, Round 16, Laguna Seca, 3 October.

SCRAMP, Laguna Seca Raceway, PO Box 2078, Monterey, CA 93942, United States (Tel: 010 1 408 648 5100 ticket office; 5111 general). Advance tickets: three-day admission dollars 65 ( pounds 43); three-day super and paddock dollars 75. Raceday: dollars 45 super (advance only) or dollars 35; Grandstand seat dollars 15.

Page and Moy Ltd, 136-140 London Road, Leicester LE2 1EN (Tel: 0533-524344). Airtrack Services Ltd, 16-17 Windsor Street, Uxbridge UB8 1AB (Tel: 0895-270921). Motor Racing International, 15 Market Street, Sandwich, Kent CT13 9DA (Tel: 0304-612424).