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DATE

News (chronologically)

5/29/02

Nadeau to sub for injured Benson at Dover  Jerry Nadeau (No. 10 Valvoline Pontiac) is set to substitute again for injured Johnny Benson in the MBNA Platinum 400. Nadeau subbed for Benson at Charlotte, where he finished 28th. He returns to Dover, where he finished second in the September event last season. "I'm just helping out Johnny and the team," Nadeau said. "My job is just to come in here and wheel this thing as hard as I can and try to get these guys a win. That's all I think about. This is Johnny's ride and I'm not here to impress anybody else. I just want to do a good job for them." Benson, who has been performing therapy including water aerobics, is expected back at next week's Pocono 500 after sustaining a broken rib and two cracked ribs from a May 3 accident in the NASCAR Busch Series race at Richmond. "This watching isn't a whole lot of fun," Benson said. "I think I could run Dover but that is a pretty tough track on your body plus at the speeds we run there you just don't crash easy. The last thing I want to do is get caught up in a wreck there and make this injury worse and miss even more time. Pocono is a bit easier on the body and I think that's where the doctors feel my return would be best."

5/29/02

New Cosworth CART engine hits dyno  UPDATE We have added a picture of the first 'mule' Cosworth XG engine courtesy of Cosworth  5/23/02 - Cosworth Racing has secured its future involvement in American Racing with the announcement of a new engine program for 2003 and beyond. The Cosworth XG - a derivative of the 2000 CART Manufacturer's Championship winning Cosworth XF - will make its debut in CART at the beginning of the 2003 season and development work on the new powerplant is currently running ahead of schedule. The XG program will sit alongside Cosworth's other major activities, which include; F1, WRC, Motorbike racing and the Commercial Engineering Group.   More

5/29/02

CART reduces Chicago and Rockingham to two day events   As reported previously here on AR1 - In a continuing effort to support teams competing in the CART FedEx Championship Series, Championship Auto Racing Teams, Inc. will shorten race weekend formats for Round 7 in Chicago and Round 15 in England from three-day to two-day events. "The decision on Chicago and Rockingham was made not only to assist our teams with cost cutting issues, but to increase the excitement surrounding our events with two days of non-stop Champ Car action," said CART Vice President of Racing Operations John Lopes. "Implementing this new format further supports our commitment to our teams and focus on growing the CART FedEx Championship Series." The CART Grand Prix of Chicago at Chicago Motor Speedway will be contested the weekend of June 29-30, with practice and qualifying on Saturday and warm-up and the race on Sunday in the new two-day format, rather than the traditional three-day event. The CART Grand Prix of Chicago airs live on CBS Sunday, June 30 at 3:30 p.m. ET. The weekend schedule for the Rockingham 500 CART FedEx Championship Series race at Rockingham Motor Speedway in Corby, England September 13-14 will be a two-day event as well, only with practice and qualifying on Friday and warm-up and the race on Saturday. The Rockingham 500 airs live on SPEED Channel Saturday, September 14 at 8:30 am ET.  CART

5/29/02

Dixon confirmed at Team Target   Target Chip Ganassi Racing announced today that the team has signed second-year CART FedEx Championship Series driver Scott Dixon for the remainder of the 2002 season. Dixon will team with Kenny Brack and Bruno Junqueira and drive the No. 44 Target Toyota/Lola/Bridgestone car this weekend at the Milwaukee Mile in West Allis, WI. Team owner Chip Ganassi is excited to have Dixon join his stable of drivers. "There's no question that Scott is one of the most talented drivers in open-wheel racing today," Ganassi said. "One look at his resume and his performance on the track speaks for itself. He has proven that he can win races and championships, which is the reason why we signed him. Our goal this year is to win the CART championship and Scott gives us another legitimate shot of reaching that goal." Dixon brings an impressive resume to the team. From 1994 to 2000, the 21-year old from New Zealand won a championship in every racing series that he competed in. Last year, Dixon captured the Jim Trueman Rookie-of-the-Year award in the CART FedEx Championship series. He became the youngest winner (20 years, 9 months) in major open-wheel racing history when he won his third career start at Nazareth last year. He also captured the 2000 Dayton Indy Lights Championship. Dixon is eager to get started with his new team. "It's great to be a part of Team Target," Dixon said. "This team has shown over the past decade that they know how to win races and that's what I'm all about…winning races. It's unfortunate that things didn't work out with PWR, but it's exciting to stay with the Toyota family. They have committed a lot of resources to building a world-class engine and I can't wait to get up to Milwaukee and begin this exciting new chapter in my career."

5/29/02
Industry News

Ford appoints Volvo Exec to head Premier  Ford Motor Co. on Tuesday named Peter Horbury executive director of design for the Premier Automotive Group. He will be responsible for overseeing future product design strategy and design processes for the London-based collection of premium brands Aston Martin, Jaguar, Land Rover and Volvo, the automaker said. His appointment is effective immediately. Horbury has been design director of Volvo Car Corp. since 1991, overseeing studios in Sweden, Spain and California. "The creation of this new position reflects the importance of design within the Premier Automotive Group," J Mays, Ford's vice president of design, said in a statement. Horbury, 52, is expected to oversee the PAG's design portfolio and focus on how the brands separate design philosophies are reflected in their public images. The world's No. 2 automaker announced the departure of the head of PAG last month. Wolfgang Reitzle left as head of the group to become chief executive of the German engineering company Linde AG. Mark Fields, president and chief executive of Mazda Motor Corp., will take over on July 1.  AP

5/29/02

Mario Andretti Grand Marshall for Winston Cup race at Sears Point  Mario Andretti, one of the first professional drivers ever to compete at Sears Point Raceway, will return to Sonoma Valley to help christen the newly modernized facility as Grand Marshal of the Dodge/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Winston Cup weekend, June 20-23. Andretti, the only driver in history to win races in five different decades, drove in the first - and only - Indy Car race at Sears Point Raceway in 1970, just two years after the facility opened in 1968. It was Andretti's only competitive appearance at Sears Point, but he will return during the NASCAR Winston Cup weekend as the facility takes the wraps off its two-year $50 million modernization project. "Mario's name is legendary and his achievements are unmatched in our sport," said Steve Page, president and general manager at Sears Point Raceway. "In a year when we celebrate so many new things at this facility, it is an honor to be joined by a competitor who represents Sears Point's rich racing tradition."

5/29/02

Shakeup at RCR  After a phenomenal rookie season in which he finished 9th in the Winston Cup points, you can finally say the honeymoon is over for Kevin Harvick. Richard Childress Racing (RCR) crew chief Kevin Hamlin and many current members of the No. 29 Goodwrench Service NASCAR Winston Cup team will swap places with fellow RCR crew chief Gil Martin and many current members of the No. 31 Cingular Wireless team starting at the Pocono 500 at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway. In essence, Hamlin and his group will become the Cingular Wireless crew for driver Robby Gordon while Martin and his group will become the GM Goodwrench Service crew for driver Kevin Harvick. "We're making this move to help the GM Goodwrench Service and Cingular Wireless teams and all of RCR," said Richard Childress, President and CEO of Richard Childress Racing Enterprises, Inc. "The results of our performances this season have not been up to expectations. Jeff Green and the America Online team have had the best results so far and are showing a lot of promise for the second half of the year so we're not going to change what they have been building on. But the 29 and 31 teams are down enough in the points right now that it makes the most sense to make some changes between the two. Kevin (Hamlin), Gil and all of the guys in the shop haven't forgotten how to build and prepare race cars and Kevin (Harvick) and Robby still know how to win races so it's just a matter of getting the right people in the right places. We've made changes like this before and it's worked out and we're confident that it will again." Harvick is currently 33rd in the Winston Cup points chase.

5/29/02

China GP by 2006   Bernie Ecclestone believes that the first Chinese Grand Prix will definitely happen in 2006 at the latest. "I am sure that by 2006 we will have a Grand Prix at Shanghai," he told UK weekly Motorsport News.  We have said all along that Shanghai is the best place to have a F1 or CART race.  Apparently Bernie Ecclestone thinks so too, though we think a street race would be better than the remote F1 track being proposed..

5/29/02
Industry News

Fiat to be split up?  According to this Financial Times article, Fiat was on Monday locked in talks with its creditor banks over reducing its heavy debt load - but in the longer term Italy's largest industrial group faces the prospect of seeing its conglomerate structure broken up.

5/29/02

New Chevy on the way  Richard Childress [owner of the #'s 29,30,31] says he expects NASCAR to approve a significantly modified Chevrolet Monte Carlo body style for 2003. Pontiacs also are due for a change (has submitted a 2003 Grand Prix body to NASCAR for approval, Chevy has not). Childress hopes the new Monte Carlo will narrow a perceived aerodynamic disadvantage to rival Ford and Dodge teams. NASCAR cars' bodies are only loosely based on street cars', and NASCAR officials regularly tinker with the aerodynamic characteristics of different car makes' bodies to keep competition equal. That causes teams to argue over which make has an advantage and lobby for changes. Winston Cup series director John Darby hopes to reduce the bickering next year by making all four car makes almost identical, primarily different in the nose and tail. USA Today

5/29/02
Industry News

Vodafone posts big loss  Ferrari sponsor Vodafone reported one of the world's biggest net losses. Vodafone reported pre-tax losses after goodwill amortization and exceptional items of £13.5 billion (over $20 billion, cough cough) for the year to March. The write-down was significantly less than market expectations, boosting the company's share price 7 per cent and lifting it off four-year lows.

5/29/02

Overnight Indy 500 TV Ratings  2nd UPDATE This NY Times article gives their assessment of the ABC broadcast. At the end of the article, it states that the ABC broadcast generated a 4.7 overnight Nielsen rating (vs. 5.3 for just the race), down 11 percent from a year ago. Each rating point equals 717,310 television households.    5/29/02 - This overnight rating represents a 9% drop from last years 5.8 overnight rating, and is the lowest rating ever for a Sunday live broadcast that was not interrupted by rain, despite the controversial finish and the CART vs. IRL battle.  Like we have said all along, open wheel racing on oval tracks is not clicking with the fans.  NASCAR has won the oval track war.  The IRL pretty much rides on the back of the Indy 500, and most agree, without that, the IRL would not survive.  Therefore, one can bet that if the final overnight rating does not rebound, there won't be much celebrating in the back offices of the IRL.  The conspiracy theorists would have you believe that NASCAR has used Tony George like a pawn, backing him to form the IRL and split Indy Car racing in two, knowing all too well, that it could not survive the split, and once dead, they would be there to pick up all their sponsors to feed their Cup, Busch and Truck series.  While we certainly hope this is not true, the split had better get resolved soon, or NASCAR will be waiting at the door to count their money.  The real losers in all this will be the open-wheel fans, what is left of them.  5/27/02 - The ABC Sports race telecast earned an overnight rating of 5.3 with a 14 share (last years final rating was a 5.2, compared to NASCAR's 10+ rating for the Coca-Cola 600). Final rating numbers are expected later this week and usually go down when the smaller markets are included. Overnight ratings for the pre-race show were 4.7, according to Nielsen. “The overnight markets show strong numbers in a number of key markets,” said Buddy McAtee, assistant vice president of broadcast communications and business development for IMS. “Dayton had a 13.4, and Louisville had a 9.1. Other interesting numbers were Atlanta, 6.9; Chicago, 7.0; Columbus, 7.2; Nashville, 6.6; Orlando, 7.2; and Seattle, 6.4.” McAtee noted that many of these are current or former Indy Racing League markets. “There is no question that good weather throughout the U.S. hampered us some on Sunday,” McAtee said. “In addition, our 8 a.m. West Coast start is a limiting factor. “In today’s changing broadcast market, these are good numbers, and when combined with the continued strong performance of our Internet sites, the Indy 500 and Indy Racing League are strongly positioned for the future.”

5/29/02

Team Green still pondering further protest  In talking to the Indy Star news - "We don't want to keep this whole thing up if there's nothing there," Team Green's Carol Wilkins said, "but we still believe evidence shows we won the race." Wilkins said the team is satisfied with the way Barnhart has conducted the proceedings and series politics is not a factor. Team Green competes on the Championship Auto Racing Teams circuit. "Everybody at the IRL has been very professional in working with us," she said. "We don't want to go forward unless there's something there."

5/29/02

F1 Hot News
Eddie Jordan Reveals Horror
Williams 'Pleased Or Angered'?
A Third World Championship
Taku's £1m Repair Bill
Courtney Set For F1 Debut?
Pre-Canada Testing Update
Brands Host 'Ferrari Dream'

5/28/02

ALMS swings into Midwest  The American Le Mans Series will bring the excitement of international sports car racing to the Heartland of America with a pair of upcoming events at racing circuits in the Midwest. The swing through the American Midwest will begin with American Le Mans at Mid-Ohio, an event on the weekend of June 28-30 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. The swing will then move north to America’s Dairyland as the series makes its first-ever appearance at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis., for the Road America 500 presented by the Chicago Tribune July 4-7.   ALMS

5/28/02

Trulli keeps 4th place  The FIA today released a statement confirming that Jarno Trulli's fourth place in the Monaco Grand Prix will stand. "Further analysis of an electronic unit on car 14 was completed today (28 May) by members of the FIA’s Technical Department," read the statement. "The unit, which forms part of the car’s launch control system, was found to be in conformity with the requirements of the 2002 FIA Formula One Technical Regulations. Car 14 will therefore retain its position (4th) in the final results of the 2002 Monaco Grand Prix. "Certain components are routinely checked at the beginning of the season to ensure that they have no illegitimate function (*). A seal is then placed on the unit to confirm it has been checked. There is no regulation requiring the seal to be in place (as was the case formerly with programmable electronic units forming part of the engine management system), but its absence means that the unit has to be re-checked. In the case of this particular component, the checks could only be carried out away from the circuit, rather like checking an engine. "(*)For example, an electronic component in the launch control system might have the means to receive a signal from the pits when the lights go out, thus enabling the car to start more quickly than it could if started by the driver himself in accordance with the regulations."

5/28/02

Atlantics - Former Champion Buddy Rice to replace Hand  Dede Rogers, owner of DSTP Motorsports, today announced that Buddy Rice will return to the driver's seat for the 2000 CART Toyota Atlantic Championship-winning team, beginning with the series’ fourth round at Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey, California. Rice will step in for Joey Hand, who is recuperating from injuries sustained from a testing accident at the Milwaukee Mile on Friday, May 17. The team will not compete in this weekend's race at Milwaukee. "We're delighted to have Buddy back in the car," said Rogers, whose team won the 2000 CART Toyota Atlantic title in its rookie Atlantic season with Rice. "He's one of the best drivers in the country and an integral part of the DSTP family. We felt that this was the best decision for the team, and for Joey. He and Joey work very well together, and we feel that Buddy's expertise will be invaluable to continuing with the development of the new Swift. We're hopeful to get Joey back in the car as soon as possible but, until then, we know that Buddy will give his all to keep DSTP up front." "I'm pleasantly surprised that the team turned to me to fill-in for Joey," said Rice, who won the 2000 Atlantic title with five wins, ten podiums and six fastest race laps out of 12 races while driving for DSTP. "I've always said that I would do whatever was in the best interests of Dede and the team, so when they asked, I felt it was the right decision. Joey's put a lot of work into developing this car, so it's important to keep this information in-house and to keep working closely with him over the next several races until he's ready to jump back in. In the meantime, it's going to be great to be back in the cockpit of an Atlantic car, and I can't thank Dede and the team enough for what should be some pretty exciting races ahead." DSTP

5/28/02
Industry News

Bridgestone/Firestone may move from Nashville  According to this article, Bridgestone/Firestone is planning another move, and the search for new office space could take the tire maker out Nashville or to another state altogether. Bridgestone/Firestone Americas Holding Inc. wants to house its 750-800 corporate employees in one place rather than throughout the four buildings they now occupy, spokeswoman Christine Karbowiak said Friday. "The problem is finding a space that fits our needs and is also a good financial deal," she said. "We're looking at a number of options. We really want to stay in Nashville, but we have an obligation to look at all the options and what's best for our employees." Nashville officials are scheduled to meet with Bridgestone/Firestone officials next week. "We're talking with them and we plan to do everything we can to keep them in Nashville," said Ava Philson, a spokeswoman for Mayor Bill Purcell. "We value what they bring to this community. They're a big employer and a good business."

5/28/02

NASCAR penalizes Mark Martin crew chief, but keeps win  Mark Martin keeps the Win, but NASCAR fines crew chief for rules infraction NASCAR Officials announced that Ben Leslie, crew chief of the No. 6 Ford Taurus, received a $50,000 fine for a rule violation found during post-race inspection following Sunday's Coca-Cola Racing Family 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C. Leslie was penalized under Section 12-4-T in the 2002 NASCAR Winston Cup Series rule book, "Any car that is found to be under the specified height requirement after the completion... of the race." The minimum height requirement is 51 inches - the No. 6 car was approximately 1/8 of an inch too low. Neither Ben Leslie nor Roush Racing plans to appeal the fine, but they did have these comments. "NASCAR set the height rule and it doesn't matter whether it is one inch or 1/8 of an inch," said Leslie. "With 600 miles of racing there is a great deal of wear and tear and adjustments that have to be made on the car. "If you think of it that way, with the race being so long and all of the adjustments that are required in that type of the race, 1/8 of an inch is not a lot. On top of that, we had some cooling problems to work on throughout the race and between that and the normal adjustments, it's hard not to lose some height. It didn't have any impact on the outcome of the race at all. "Still, NASCAR has to draw the line somewhere and we didn't measure up to that line. It's a steep fine, but those are the rules of the game."

5/28/02

Jeff Gordon & Sesame Street  Jeff Gordon, the four-time NASCAR Winston Cup champion, and Sesame Street, created by the global educational organization Sesame Workshop, are teaming up to raise money for The Jeff Gordon Foundation dedicated to awarding grants to needy and worthy causes. The "2002 Jeff Gordon Foundation-Sesame Street" car is designed by renowned motorsports artist Sam Bass and will feature Sesame Street's Elmo. The initial 2001 diecast program was a great success for The Jeff Gordon Foundation generating over $200,000 for charity. Once again, this specially designed collector's car will not be raced. Action Performance Companies will create the diecast replicas of the "2002 Jeff Gordon Foundation-Sesame Street" car, which will be released for sale in August of this year. "This is an exciting opportunity for the Foundation to form a partnership with Sesame Street, one of the most beloved children's television programs for over 30 years. This relationship continues the work of the Foundation to focus our attention on children," said Jeff Gordon. "Sharing a similar mission, we are proud to support The Jeff Gordon Foundation in helping meet the physical, social and intellectual needs of children and their families," said Liz Kalodner, Sesame Workshop's Senior Vice President and General Manager, Global Consumer Products and International TV Distribution. The Jeff Gordon Foundation established in December of 1999, supports children and families in need. The Foundation is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) organization that benefits The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, The Make-A-Wish Foundation, The Marrow Foundation and Riley Hospital for Children.

5/28/02

F1 Hot News
Yet Another Proposal
Alan Jones' Novel Solution
2003 Racing Seat For Wurz?
'Painful Canada' For McLaren
Dennis Will Decide On Hakkinen Return
Renault Confident Of Legality
No Privacy For Formula One
Ferrari Worried After Monaco?
Magny-Cours Modifications
DC Heads TAG Heuer Campaign

Ickx honored

5/28/02

Chassis safety changes for 2003  ·

  • The distance between the pedal bulkhead and front bulkhead will be increased by a minimum of 3 inches, moving the driver back.

  • Sidepods must maintain a minimum width of 60 inches along a greater distance.

  • Energy-absorbent materials will be introduced for driver leg protection.

  • Front suspension mounting points must have a bulkhead directly behind them. ·Aluminum honeycomb core used in chassis construction must conform to a minimum core density.

  • Car weight will be reduced to lessen impact mass.

  • A minimum chassis length will be established.

The driver must be able to undo the safety belts, remove the steering wheel and exit the car in less than five seconds.  Chassis designs built for the 2003 season also will undergo rigorous impact and load tests that will meet or exceed FIA standards. The Indy Racing League has specified the following changes in those mandatory tests:

  • Increase side load on nose push-off test.

  • Increase energy on first nose impact test.

  • Increase energy on second nose impact test.

  • Chassis must not incur damage during nose impact tests.

  • Increase applied load during roll hoop test.

  • Increase side intrusion absorbsion levels.

Mounting points for the cables that are part of the Suspension and Wheel Energy Management System (SWEMS) will be integrated into the car design, and minimum sizes for the mountings have been established.  IRL

5/27/02

Olympic champion takes Skip Barber school  Marc Gagnon, winner of two gold medals in the last Olympic Games in Salt Lake City completed today his first training session at the Skip Barber Racing School at Mont-Tremblant. Gagnon was under the tutelage of Richard Spénard, Director of Canadian Operations for Skip Barber.

5/27/02

Boris Said wins 2nd in row  Boris Said of ACS Express Racing extended his lead in the Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires Cup championship Monday by capturing the Trans-Am portion of the Mohegan Sun Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park. Said (#33 Applied Computer Solutions Panoz Esperante) who took the championship lead with a victory at Mosport (Ont.) International Raceway last weekend, extended it by driving to 4.566-second triumph over Tony Ave in the third of 12 rounds in the 2002 Trans-Am championship. Rookie Butch Leitzinger rounded out the podium with a third-place performance. After becoming the first Trans-Am driver to win back-to-back events since Justin Bell, the 2001 AmeriSuites Rookie of the Year, Said, who also owns a podium finish of second at Long Beach, has 94 championship points, 20 more than Johnny Miller, who stands second with 74.  “I think pit stops are great because they add a different element of strategy to the races,” Said continued. “Our strategy just played out today. It was a great day for the ACS team.” The victory was especially significant to Said because it came at Lime Rock, his home track during his formative years as a racer. “It feels good to win one here,” Said allowed. “I grew up here; this is the first track I ever went to, and I worked here as an instructor for [track president] Skip Barber when I was first starting out. “I’ve won a couple of Firestone Firehawk races here, but this is my biggest win at Lime Rock,” Said summed up.

5/27/02

Castroneves collects record purse  Helio Castroneves earned a record $1,606,215 of the first $10-million purse in Indianapolis Motor Speedway history for winning the 86th Indianapolis 500-Mile Race on May 26, according to unofficial prize figures announced May 27 at the Indianapolis 500 Victory Celebration. Castroneves’ award was larger than the $1,568,150 that Arie Luyendyk earned for his second career Indianapolis 500 victory in 1997. The total 2002 purse of $10,028,580 is an event record and marks the first time the Indianapolis 500 purse has surpassed the $10-million mark. The previous event record was $9,615,325, set last year in the Memorial Day classic. The purse is comprised of Indianapolis Motor Speedway and Indy Racing League awards, and other designated awards. Castroneves, a native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, became the first repeat winner of the Indianapolis 500 since Al Unser won consecutive races in 1970-71. For this feat, Castroneves, driver of the No. 3 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone, won $290,000 from BorgWarner Inc., including $160,000 for winning back-to-back races. It is the first time that prize has been awarded, as the award did not exist when Unser won consecutive races. Paul Tracy won $489,315 for his runner-up performance in the No. 26 Team Green 7-Eleven Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone, while third-place finisher Felipe Giaffone, driver of the No. 21 Hollywood Mo Nunn Racing G Force/Chevrolet/Firestone, took home $475,315. MBNA Pole winner Bruno Junqueira earned $282,715 for his 31st-place finish. Junqueira, driver of the No. 33 Target Chip Ganassi Racing G Force/Chevrolet/Firestone, exited the race on Lap 87 with gearbox problems. His total winnings included $100,000 for winning the MBNA Pole Award. For only the fifth time in history, two drivers earned the Bank One Rookie of the Year award. Alex Barron and Tomas Scheckter shared the honor that was first awarded to Art Cross in 1952, and became the first drivers to split the award since Bernard Jourdain and Scott Pruett in 1989. Both earned $12,500 each of the $25,000 check from Bank One. The 87th Indianapolis 500 is scheduled to start at 11 a.m. (EST) May 25, 2003. IRL

5/27/02

Alonso to test Jaguar  Jaguar will put Renault test driver Fernando Alonso in one of its cars at Silverstone this week in a three-way comparison test. The Spaniard will drive on Thursday, while the team's test drivers Andre Lotterer and James Courtney will get their first taste of the 2002 car on the previous two days of the test. "Our objective here is to conduct a true assessment of James and Andre by comparing them to what I regard as one of the best new talents in Formula 1," said Jaguar team principal, Niki Lauda.

5/27/02

Hospitalized IRL driver released  There have been so many IRL drivers hospitalized this year, we lost count.  Count Laurent Redon among the walking wounded.  Laurent Redon, whose crash with Buddy Lazier with two laps to go led to the disputed finish of the Indianapolis 500, was released from Methodist Hospital on Monday. The Frenchman sustained a concussion when he and Lazier collided on lap 199, bringing out the yellow light just as Paul Tracy appeared to pass Helio Castroneves for the lead.  Speedway officials said he would be examined later in the week before he is cleared to drive. Lazier, a former winner who finished 15th, bruised his knee in the crash but was not hospitalized. ``I drove right in alongside of him in the short chute,'' Lazier said of Sunday's crash. ``I had the pass going into turn two. I looked over to my right, and he was coming down on me. ``I was all the way down below the white line trying to avoid him, but we just came together,'' Lazier said. ``We shot up into the outside retaining wall and we hit a ton.''   Why were these two racing so hard against one another when they were laps apart?

5/27/02

Ladder Series: Allmendinger leads flag-to-flag at Lime Rock  Barber Dodge Pro Series championship leader A.J. Allmendinger converted his pole position into a win at the Lime Rock Park Grand Prix presented by Mohegan Sun. Marc Breuers in the Sunoco Special and Rafael Sperafico driving the Barber-CART Rookie of the Year Scholarship Dodge-liveried Reynard joined Allmendinger on the podium, with Nilton Rossoni and Julio Campos rounding out the top five in Monday's race. Starting from the pole, A.J. Allmendinger 's biggest concern before the race was that the start of the race would give his competition a good opportunity to pass him. He knew that if he could get the jump on second-place starter Breuers, that he would be able to control the pace of the race and let him build up a gap over the field. He was right, making an excellent start and quickly building up a lead early in the race over Breuers. What Allmendinger did not know was that he would have to do it again as a yellow flag late in the race bunched the field up erasing the 5.2 second lead he had built up over the field and giving Breuers one last chance to pass.
Pos/Car/Driver/Hometown/Points/Purse/Laps/Status
1/29/A.J. Allmendinger/Hollister, Calif./22/$13,000/40/Running
2/94/Marc Breuers/Philadelphia, PA/16/$8,750/40/Running
3/11/Rafael Sperafico/Toledo Paraná, Brazil/14/$6,500/40/Running
4/36/Nilton Rossoni/Curitiba, Brazil/12/$4,500/40/Running
5/21/Julio Campos/Curitiba, Brazil/11/$2,500/40/Running
6/19/Dan Di Leo/Markham,Ontario,Canada/10/$1,500/40/Running
7/15/Memo Rojas/Mexico City, Mexico/9/$1,250/40/Running
8/27/Josh Beaulieu/Langley, B.C., Canada/8/$1,250/40/Running
9/14/Carlos Lievano/Neiva, Colombia/7/$1,250/40/Running
10/42/Josh Rehm/Plymouth, Mass./6/$1,250/40/Running
11/55/Piero Rodarte/Mexico City, Mexico/5/$1,000/40/Running
12/51/Aurelio Lopez, Jr./Guadalajara, Mexico/4/$1,000/40/Running
13/66/Tom Fogarty/Portola Valley, Calif./3/$1,000/40/Running
14/67/Jon Vannini/Hillsborough, Calif./2/$1,000/40/Running
15/31/Leonardo Maia/Oakland, Calif./2/$1,000/39/Running
16/33/German Quiroga/Mexico City, Mexico/$750/39/Running
17/32/Morgan Davies/Tucson, Arizona/$750/39/Running
18/97/Atticus Missner/Chicago, Illinois/$750/39/Running
19/34/Christian Szymczak/Oakland, Calif./$750/39/Running
20/16/Davy Cook/Tallahassee, Fla./$750/37/Off Course
21/37/Mike Richardson/Kelowna, B.C., Canada/$500/30/Contact
22/69/Chris Baker/Houston, Texas/$500/30/Contact
LENGTH OF RACE: 40 Laps of 1.54 Mile Circuit for 61.600 miles
TIME OF RACE: 40 Minutes, 51.607 seconds
AVERAGE SPEED: 90.455
MARGIN OF VICTORY: 0 Minutes 1.561 Seconds
LAP LEADERS: A. J. Allmendinger - All Laps
FASTEST RACE LAP: Leonardo Maia 00:54.718 (101.319 mph) Lap 18
FASTEST QUALIFIER: A. J. Allmendinger 00:54.597 (101.544 mph)
TOTAL PAYOUT: $51,500

5/27/02

What does Honda think?  Dear AutoRacing1.com, I sit here watching the frame-by-frame replays on RPM2Night that clearly shows Paul Tracy in front of Helio Castroneves when the caution light first displayed for the Lazier/Redon accident, yet IRL officials handed the race to IRL driver Castroneves, rather than the real winner, CART driver Tracy.  After reading that Honda was upset with CART over the pop-off valve incident last year, I wonder what they think about the officiating in the IRL, the league they just signed up with, with regard to this and the other questionable calls made during the running of the Indy 500?  You hear about 'The Call' all the time in NASCAR.  I wonder what Honda will think the first time the IRL (which is modeled after and run just like NASCAR) gives 'The Call' to their archrival Toyota, who just so happens to be signed up with The Captain.  Eddie LaFontaine, Atlanta, Georgia [Editor's Note:  The video is not very clear and conclusive, so it is premature to judge whether Tracy was past when the yellow flashed]

5/27/02

F1 Hot News
Orange To Abandon Arrows?

Bernie Balks Breakaway

Coughlan Close To McLaren Move?

Trulli's Fourth Provisional

Mika Crashed On Purpose

Driver-By-Driver Analysis From Monaco

5/26/02

Lawsuit against NASCAR picking up steam  According to this Newsday article, A federal lawsuit is gaining momentum in New York, Washington, D.C., and Texas, threatening NASCAR's financial fiefdom and accusing the stock-car racing body of operating as an illegal monopoly. Bill France Jr., the son of late NASCAR founder "Big" Bill France, is up against some of America's most feared lawyers in a suit that could force unprecedented disclosure of NASCAR's closely guarded balance sheets. Johnnie Cochran is the high-profile front man. Another name, well known only in American's legal and corporate circles, signifies that Cochran is hoping for a long, fierce fight. Washington lawyer Michael Hausfeld took on Microsoft, sued Swiss banks on behalf of Holocaust victims and was recently named the most feared attorney in D.C. Now he is challenging NASCAR in a case that has sports antitrust experts watching closely. "The essence of it is the stranglehold that [NASCAR has] on NASCAR-type racing," Sam Cherry, the lead plaintiff's attorney, said in an interview at the Cochran Firm's office in lower Manhattan. "You cannot have a NASCAR-formatted race without the blessing of NASCAR."

5/26/02

More controversy from Indy  Not only is the finish of the 86th Indy 500 under dispute (preventing a CART driver from winning a 3rd straight 500), complaints are pouring in about the running of the entire event.  IRL officials are being blamed for Tony Kanaan's crash in the oil of Bruno Junqueira because it took them one full lap to throw the caution.  The start was so strung out fans are asking how and why the green flag was thrown.  When Sam Hornish hit the wall, the caution was not thrown for several laps in the hope that Andretti might go a lap down.  Finally it was thrown for debris. When Robby Gordon's pit tank blew up, he was out of fuel.  Mysteriously he was given more fuel and allowed to continue.  Some wonder where that is allowed in the rule book.  And finally, with Castroneves's tank running dry, the next to last caution was supposed to go green one or two laps sooner, but IRL officials cancelled the go-green command saving Castroneves valuable fuel.  If not for that, some say Castroneves would have run dry sooner.  With the protest being heard by Brian Barnhart, and the final appeal being heard by Tony George (should Team Green choose to take it to the next level), few doubt the finishing order will be changed in spite of the evidence we have seen so far, because of Team Penske's favored status as an IRL team.  However, Barnhart has been very fair in previous dealings, so we're hopeful he will do the right thing after all the evidence is heard.

5/26/02

Brian Barnhart addresses controversial finish  I just wanted to come in and spend some time with you guys and let you know that we have posted the official results for the Indianapolis running, the 86th running of which took place this afternoon, and they are unchanged from the unofficial results at the time the decision was made at that point in time, with the No. 3 car of Helio Castroneves being the winner of the race, Paul Tracy running second and Felipe Giaffone running third.  Transcript

5/26/02

IRL rulebook on cautions  With regard to the controversial Indy 500 finish, here is what section 7.14 of the Indy Racing League Official Rule Book that pertains to yellow lights and passing says: -- 7.14. Yellow Flag (Caution): The yellow caution period starts with the display of the yellow flag and/or yellow lights and ends with the display of the green flag and/or green lights. Racing ceases immediately upon display of the yellow flag and/or yellow lights. The Officials may call a yellow caution period at any time for any reason. Their decision to call, not to call, or to end a yellow caution period may not be protested or appealed. Yellow caution period laps will be scored unless stated otherwise by the Officials. -- 7.14.D. During the yellow caution period, no Driver may pass another Car unless: (1) The other Car is stopped on the track or the other Car has waved the passing Car by on the front straightaway and promptly confirms such action by radio communication to the Officials; (2) The other Car is on the apron or is on the inside of the track and is not maintaining the pace lap speed; or (3) Either Car is in the pit lanes.

5/26/02

Tracy will go to NASCAR before the IRL  While talking about the rift between CART and the IRL, and where Barry Green might race in 2003, in this Toronto newspaper article, Paul Tracy says - "I'm a CART guy and I want to road race. (Team Green owner Barry Green) has not indicated to me whether he's going to stay in CART next year or switch to the IRL. But if he goes the IRL route and I'm forced to race only on ovals, I will have to rethink what I'm going to do. "Maybe I should take a look at NASCAR or whatever. I just hope Barry makes his mind up sooner rather than later so that I can decide what to do."

5/26/02

Discover Card enters NASCAR Discover Card has announced today they will be making their first venture into motorsports sponsorship beginning next week at the Winston Cup race at Dover, becoming the primary sponsor of the #26 Ford of Haas-Carter Motorsports for the next six races. Discover Card has also purchased large blocks of television advertising being broadcast on the FOX television network over the next six races, as well as becoming the title sponsor of the FOX pre-race show for the balance of the 2002 season. Driver Todd Bodine will return to the Haas-Carter Motorsports team to drive the car..  Pete McCole

5/26/02

Was there monkey business going on?  Dear AutoRacing1.com, Why was the next-to-last caution flag extended one additional lap?  Was it to help Helio Castroneves save fuel so that he might win the race?  If not for that, he would have run out a lap earlier.  Not only was it bad enough that two IRL wankers crashed, stealing a sure victory from CART driver Paul Tracy, I see that current or past foreign CART road racers dominated once again.  Team Penske, you know, the team every true blue IRL'er hated when they dominated in their CART days, won again (even though out of pure luck), and with Paul Tracy 2nd, Giaffone 3rd, followed by Alex Barron, Eddie Cheever, Richie Hearn, etc, it looked like just another CART race today.  Where were all those great sprint car and midget oval drivers that the IRL was created for?  Oh, and before I forget, I see the same big teams (current or past CART teams) took home all the money once again.  Tell me again why the IRL was created?  Billy Reed, Billings, Montana

5/26/02

Sato has 4th crash in two weeks  Jordan driver Takuma Sato slammed into the wall in the tunnel at Monaco and slid down the track to hit the barriers at the entry to the following chicane. Sato appears OK - he got out the car unaided. That is his fourth crash in two weeks - one in the Austrian GP, one in the Historic Monaco GP, one in practice at Monaco and then this one.

5/26/02

Junqueira called as good as Montoya  In this Indy Star article, Bill Pappas, Bruno Junqueira's engineer at Target Chip Ganassi says that he's every bit as good as Juan Montoya was when he was with the team.

5/26/02

F1 Hot News
Schumacher 'Useless' At PR?

Michelin Conquer Monaco

Mika Gone Forever?

FIA Will Not Punish Ferrari

Scarlet-Centurion At Monaco

Massa In The Bad Books

BAR Stuck With Villeneuve

5/25/02

CART's new TV ad hits the airwaves  In case you didn't catch it, CART's new TV ad was shown during F1 qualifying and the Coca Cola 600 qualifying shows on SPEED Channel, and on CBS today.  It's about time CART started to run TV ads to promote its product.  Showing it during F1 and NASCAR broadcasts is very wise.

5/25/02

Pook - we knew Honda was gone  Chris Pook, speaking about Honda's announcement that they were going to the IRL in 2003, said it came at no surprise to CART.  "We knew they were gone from CART, and although we tried to do damage control, in the end it was too late."  As we now understand it, CART will have some announcements of their own in the coming weeks, and we expect their engine manufacturers for 2003 will soon be set.  With both the IRL and CART placing price restrictions on chassis and engines, neither series can afford to have too many manufacturers, because each would have too few customers to make up on volume, what they are losing in price.

5/25/02

Hayner wins first pole  Stuart Hayner, the final car on the race track, put together a spectacular lap just moments before the checkered flag to capture his first career Trans-Am Series pole position for Monday's Mohegan Sun Presents the Lime Rock Park Grand Prix (3 p.m. ET, live, SPEED Channel). Hayner (#02 Trenton Forging/Tom Bell Chevrolet/Rockland STD Gear Chevrolet Corvette) took advantage of clear asphalt to post a lap of 52.271 seconds (105.374 miles per hour) on the 1.53-mile permanent road course and take the pole position for Monday's 66-lap, 100.98-mile, third round of the 2002 Trans-Am Series for the BFGoodrich Tires championship. Hayner had lost the provisional pole just moments earlier to Butch Leitzinger, whose lap of 52.576 seconds (104.576 mph) had apparently captured the primary starting spot. Leitzinger (#88 Tommy Bahama Chevrolet Corvette) had gradually improved his speed throughout the 20-minute qualifying session before recording his best lap with under a minute to go. That's when Hayner responded to the challenge. "I can honestly say I don't think I've ever been as depressed as I was when I left the race track [Friday] night," said Hayner, who earned two championship points and the Jaguar Pole Award for his performance. "We had struggled all day, and you start to question yourself. But the crew made wholesale changes, and the car just got better and better."

5/25/02

CART Ladder News: Allmendinger on Lime Rock pole  A.J. Allmendinger put an exclamation mark on his Friday provisional pole by returning to Lime Rock Park and going even faster in Saturday's qualifying session, outpacing the rest of the field and securing the pole position for the Barber Dodge Pro Series race on Monday.  Story & Grid

5/25/02

Renna named test driver for Kelly racing  Kelley Racing announced today that former CART Indy Lights driver Tony Renna will be the Test Driver for their Indy Racing League and newly formed Indy Racing Infiniti Pro Series teams. In addition to his testing duties, Renna will also serve as driver coach for Jason Priestley in the Infiniti Pro Series "Needless to say, I am very excited about my new relationship with of one of the finest organizations in all of motorsports,” said Renna. “Kelley Racing is a program that every driver would like to be associated with and I am very thankful to Tom Kelley and Jim Freudenberg for believing in my abilities. I am looking forward to working with everyone on the team and to a long term, successful relationship with Kelley Racing." Renna has been racing since 1982. His open-wheel experience includes driving in the CART PPG-Dayton Indy Lights Championship with PacWest Racing Group while also acting as their official Champ Car testing and development driver. During his Indy Lights career on oval tracks, Renna scored one win, two poles, six podium finishes and 8 top fives. Other racing accomplishments included the 1996 Barber Dodge Pro Series “Rookie of the Year” as well as being selected as the “Valvoline Team USA” award winner. “We’re pleased that someone with Tony’s experience has agreed to help out our program,” said Tom Kelley, owner of Kelley Racing. “With this being the inaugural season for the Infiniti Pro Series, we need to accumulate as much information as possible. And with Tony’s experience in open-wheel racing, I’m sure that he’ll provide us with great feedback and valuable insight towards a successful season for Jason and the entire Kelley Racing team.”

5/25/02

Cheever parts ways  Eddie Cheever Jr. and Clyde Perlee have agreed to end their four and a half year partnership in Red Bull Cheever Racing. Cheever will acquire Perlee's interest in the team giving him sole ownership. "I first met Clyde through a letter he wrote to me," Cheever said. "That letter turned out to be a great gift, as Clyde has become a dear friend. He has been instrumental in the growth of Red Bull Cheever Racing these past four years. "I will always be grateful for Clyde's financial backing," Cheever continued, "but above all else he instilled solid business principles and procedures in our team that are now a part of our culture. His influence will remain with this company far into the future." Cheever and Perlee joined forces at the end of the 1997 Indy Racing League season and enjoyed substantial success in subsequent years including winning the 1998 Indianapolis 500.

5/25/02

IRL announces 3 chassis makers  Three chassis manufacturers will produce race cars that will meet the 2003-2005 Indy Racing League specifications, league officials announced May 25.  Concord, N.C.-based MK Racing will join Dallara and G Force in the production of the next era of the Indy Racing League formula. Dallara designs and builds its chassis in Italy, while G Force cars are built in Braselton, Ga.  More...

5/25/02

Toyota signs Comptech  Toyota Racing Development, U.S.A., Inc., has reached an agreement with Comptech Machine to become one of Toyota's two designated engine rebuilders for the 2003 Indy Racing League season, it was announced today. A Comptech-prepared engine powered Bruno Junqueira to the pole-position for this weekend's Indianapolis 500. Its engines have now won either the pole or the race in three of the last four years with Juan Montoya's victory in 2000 and Arie Luyendyk's pole position in 1999. "We are thrilled to enter the Indy Racing League with one of the pre-eminent engine rebuilders for the Indianapolis 500," said Lee White, Toyota Racing Development group vice president. "Comptech's record in the Indianapolis 500 speaks for itself, and they also have a great tradition in a variety of aspects in motorsports." In addition to its IRL engines, Comptech also provides engines for Lynx Racing in the Toyota Atlantic Championship. Prior to focusing on engine development, Comptech also was a successful race team. The team won nine International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) titles from 1986-1993 and has been a past competitor in CART as well, where the team earned Honda's first Champ Car pole in 1995. "I've been a long-time admirer of Toyota's race program dating back to our time in IMSA," said Doug Peterson, owner and president of Comptech. "I'm looking forward to working closely, and winning, with Toyota in the future." Comptech will join Penske Racing as one of two Toyota engine rebuilders currently signed for the 2003 season. The new Toyota Indy powerplant has been undergoing dynamometer testing since February at TRD in Costa Mesa, Calif. On-track testing is scheduled to begin this summer. TRD, U.S.A. commenced its operation in 1979 as the North American technical arm for design, development and assembly of Toyota's racing engines. Championship-caliber powerplants have been produced for various series including CART; IMSA; SCORE, MTEG and CORR off-road racing; Toyota Atlantic; NASCAR Goody's Dash; SCCA; and Pikes Peak. TRD also distributes a premium quality line of high-performance aftermarket parts for Toyota products.  Toyota

5/25/02

Michelin advantage at Monaco  Michelin tires had the advantage in qualifying as all but two of the top 10 qualifiers were on Michelins. The two exceptions were the Bridgestone-shod Ferraris in third and fifth spots. “You see a lot of Michelin drivers at the top whereas normally there are a few Bridgestones there,” Michael Schumacher said. “It’s the nature of the situation. We’ve said many times it will not continue like it has been in previous races. It will turn around, and it has happened, and that’s what we have to face. But we’re not too worried. We’re not miles off, we still have an opportunity in third position. It’s a long race in front of us.”

5/25/02
F3000

Second win for Bourdais  Sebastien Bourdais led all 45 laps to win his second FIA International Formula 3000 Championship race of the season. Patrick Friesacher, Tomas Enge, Antonio Pizzonia and Ricardo Sperafico rounded out the top five.

5/25/02

Screens banned  Effective immediately, the FIA has banned the screens and barriers that teams put in front of their pit garages to prevent people seeing into the garage. The teams used the screens to protect their latest secrets and car modifications. But the FIA cited that “for reasons of safety (escape routes and access for emergency services) and in order to allow the clerk of the course, the scrutineers and pit observers to properly carry out their duties, no screen, cover or any other obstruction which in any way obscures any part of the car will be allowed at any time in the pit lane or garages, save with the express permission in each case of the FIA Safety Delegate.” The FIA is permitted to make instant rule changes on safety grounds.

5/25/02

Montoya picks Junqueira, Emerson picks Papis, to win Indy 500  Monaco Grand Prix pole winner Juan Pablo Montoya hopes that Indianapolis 500 pole winner Bruno Junqueira will win this year’s “500” in the Target Chip Ganassi Racing G Force/Chevrolet/Firestone. Montoya won the 2000 Indianapolis 500 driving for Target Chip Ganassi Racing. “I hope Bruno (Junqueira) could do a good job,” Montoya said. “He has been working really hard through last year and this year, so it would be nice if he could do a good job. I think he has got the team, and he has got the car to do it, so hopefully he can win.”  Emerson Fittipaldi, two-time World Champion and winner of the Indianapolis 500 in 1989 and 1993, said Max Papis may win the 86th Indianapolis 500. “Who is going to win Indianapolis tomorrow?” Fittipaldi said. “Max Papis is going to win. He always starts from the back and wins.”

5/25/02

Ned Jarrett undergoes heart procedure Former two-time NASCAR Winston Cup champion Ned Jarrett was released from Frye Regional Medical Center on Friday afternoon after undergoing a procedure. After experiencing shortness of breath on Wednesday night, Jarrett was examined by Dr. Derek Luney, who immediately sent Jarrett to the hospital to undergo a heart catheterization procedure. Dr. Norman McDonald performed the procedure, and found an artery with 95% blockage. Angioplasty was performed and a stent was inserted. The father of 1999 Winston Cup champion Dale Jarrett is now resting at home.  Pete McCole

5/25/02

Infiniti Pro Series purses to be $100,000  Drivers and teams participating in the new Indy Racing Infiniti Pro Series will compete for a total of $100,000 in prize money per event, series officials announced May 25. The winner of each Infiniti Pro Series race will receive $25,000, with second- and third-place finishers awarded $14,500 and $10,000, respectively. Fourth through 20th-place finishers will also receive a share of the prize fund. “I’m very encouraged that we are able to offer this kind of generous prize fund for the first season of the new series,” said Roger Bailey, executive director of the Infiniti Pro Series. “Moreover, when 20 teams have the opportunity to share the prize money, the entire series benefits.”   IRL

5/25/02

Foyt's grandson to run Pro Series  A.J. Foyt gave his grandson and namesake a special birthday surprise May 25. The first four-time winner of the Indianapolis 500 announced he would field a car in the Indy Racing Infiniti Pro Series this season for A.J. Foyt IV, who turned 18 on May 25. “I’m really happy to be running a whole series where I run for the points,” said young Foyt, who competed in selected USAC Silver Crown events last year. “I like the idea of running the bigger cars, and I’m glad we tested the Indy car at Phoenix because that got my confidence up. I was able to run that car consistently, so I know I’ll be able to handle the Infiniti Pro Series car.” Said A.J. Foyt: “A.J. IV has run in karts, F2000 cars and even a couple Silver Crown races, and I just felt like this was a good opportunity for him. The Infiniti Pro Series runs on the same tracks as the Indy Racing League so I can be there while he’s learning. Also, he’ll be running cars made by Dallara, which also builds the Indy cars I run. I was very impressed with the way he ran my Indy car at a test earlier this year. I think it will be good preparation for the Indy Racing League, which is where he wants to run.” Young Foyt will drive a No. 14 Infiniti-powered Dallara in the series’ inaugural season, which starts July 7 at Kansas Speedway. Foyt will race the full schedule. “There may be a little more pressure on me because I’m his grandson,” A.J. Foyt IV said of his family racing heritage. “But I don’t think he’ll be all that hard on me. He’ll just tell me all the things I do wrong, pretty much like he treats his other drivers, which is both good and bad. But I know it’s all to help me become a better driver.”   IRL

5/25/02

Pennzoil & Panther extend through 2005  Pennzoil and Panther Racing announced today that they would continue their Indy Racing League association through 2005. “Racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and in open-wheel competition is an integral part of Pennzoil’s heritage, and we are excited to continue our association with Panther Racing,” said Jim Postl, president of Pennzoil Quaker State. “As we complete 2003, our fifth year as the primary sponsor of Panther Racing, we are excited to announce that we will continue the association through 2005.” The Pennzoil and Panther Racing association was announced in fall 1997, and the familiar yellow No. 4 Indy Racing League car first competed in January 1998 at the Walt Disney World Speedway with Scott Goodyear behind the wheel. Since the start of the 2001 season, Sam Hornish Jr. has driven the Pennzoil Panther Racing car.  In addition to the extended partnership with Pennzoil, Panther Racing also announced that it would continue a technical relationship with GM Racing and Chevrolet at least through the 2005 IRL season. “General Motors has supplied Panther Racing and Speedway Engines with tremendous support since 1998, and we are looking forward to continuing our winning relationship with Chevrolet,” said Panther Racing co-owner and Indianapolis Chevrolet dealer Gary Pedigo. “It is special for me to have the products I sell everyday – Pennzoil and Chevrolet automobiles – represented on the track by Panther Racing.”  IRL

5/25/02

Indy 500 has lost its luster  According to this Pocono Record article, there are those of us who are old enough to remember when the Indy 500 was the only race you talked about, especially during the month of May. Those days are long gone and the Indy 500 is a mere shell of what it used to be. Its drivers no longer have familiar names, let alone any substantial following. While there are those who would argue, the numbers speak for themselves. Years ago, the average American could name the last winner of the Indy 500. Nowadays, most Americans don't know it or at least can't pronounce it.When compared to what NASCAR has going on, Indy is lucky it has a ton of history and tradition to fall back on. I'm not saying that the Indy 500 is all washed up and no longer worth watching, but when The Winston held a week before manages to generate more excitement than the Indy 500 does, something is very wrong.

5/25/02

Americas Most Wanted Officials from Big Fan Racing Team and Body Dynamics announced a partnership with Fox television show "America's Most Wanted". The new team will attempt five Busch Grand National Events beginning with the Saturday, June 1 race at Dover, DE with Lance Hooper as driver. At each race, the car will feature pictures of missing children in hope of finding these children and returning them home. The host of the show, John Walsh, himself a father of an abducted child, spoke to the media on Friday during the unveiling of the car. "A lot of America's Most Wanted viewers are also NASCAR fans." Walsh said, "We have to thank everyone for putting this together." Pete McCole

5/25/02

IRL to reduce revs, add drag  In order to control runaway speeds, and with no turbo boost to lower, the IRL is faced with lowering engine revs next year to 10,300, adding drag and lowering downforce, according to this Star News article, and in line with what we have reported for some time now.  If CART were wise, and went to an all-road course series (seems most are jumping on the AR1 bandwagon these days regarding making CART the premier road racing series in the USA), it would not have to concern itself so much with 'too much HP' and could allow its engine to slowly increase back up to the mid-800 HP range.

5/25/02

Michael Andretti ponders owning CART team  In this Star News article, Michael Andretti talks about someday owning a race car team, most likely a CART team.  If Barry Green is forced to go to the IRL due to sponsor demands, Andretti might want to purchase part of the team and keep it in CART.  We have been told by both Mario and Michael Andretti that they hope to own a team someday, probably after Michael retires, maybe sooner.  If Michael's son Marco turns out to have the talent to race Champ Cars, you can bet he'll someday drive for Andretti Racing.

5/25/02

Trulli leads final practice in Monaco  The final free practice before this afternoon's qualifying session for the Monaco Grand Prix was action-packed. Renault's Jarno Trulli was fastest, Michael Schumacher hit mechanical trouble and four drivers smash into the barriers. Trulli turned a lap at 1m17.429s, to nip McLaren's David Coulthard, who was second fastest with a 1m17.506s lap. Juan Pablo Montoya was third and his Williams-BMW teammate Ralf Schumacher 4th.
Position/Driver Team Fastest Lap
1 Jarno Trulli Renault 1m17.429
2 David Coulthard McLaren 1m17.506
3 Juan Pablo Montoya Williams 1m17.665
4 Ralf Schumacher Williams 1m17.713
5 Rubens Barrichello Ferrari 1m18.309
6 Michael Schumacher Ferrari 1m18.471
7 Jenson Button Renault 1m18.693
8 Giancarlo Fisichella Jordan 1m18.895
9 Heinz-Harald Frentzen Arrows 1m19.133
10 Felipe Massa Sauber 1m19.146
11 Nick Heidfeld Sauber 1m19.185
12 Olivier Panis BAR 1m19.384
13 Mika Salo Toyota 1m19.430
14 Enrique Bernoldi Arrows 1m19.627
15 Kimi Raikkonen McLaren 1m19.988
16 Pedro de la Rosa Jaguar 1m20.306
17 Allan McNish Toyota 1m20.374
18 Jacques Villeneuve BAR 1m20.577
19 Takuma Sato Jordan 1m20.853
20 Mark Webber Minardi 1m20.983
21 Alex Yoong Minardi 1m21.603
22 Eddie Irvine Jaguar 1m21.739

5/25/02

F1 Hot News
Did Verstappen Win Or Lose?

Speeding F1 Car Opens Road

Two Teams Set To Crumble

Minardi Confirm Staff Cuts

Bourdais On Monaco Pole

Schumachers Not Liked In Britain

New Regs To Save F1?

Minardi Drag Phoenix To Court

Alonso's Bright Future

Todt: We Stand By Our Decision

Jordan Changes Tune

Phoenix Lose Court Battle

5/24/02

Mexico City moves to November  As we rumored long ago......Championship Auto Racing Teams, Inc. (CART) announced today the rescheduling of the Mexico Gran Premio 2002 in Mexico City, Mexico. The race, originally set as Round 17 in the CART FedEx Championship Series scheduled for October 13, has been moved to the weekend of November 15-17 and the event now becomes the final round of competition in 2002. Although the new date shifts the Mexico City event to the end of the season, the same race weekend schedule remains intact and will be contested just as any other date on the CART FedEx Championship Series schedule. More...

5/24/02

Split has allowed NASCAR to leave Indy Car Racing in dust  The Indianapolis 500 was once the premier event in U.S. auto racing. But as the race is run for the 86th time this weekend, it has become merely the second-most popular race held on that track. The Brickyard 400, a Nascar race run at the venerable track in August, had higher ratings than the Indy 500 last year, a 6.2 for the Brickyard compared with a 5.8 for the 500. It's possible that this Sunday's race will see about half the viewers of Nascar's Daytona 500 held in February, which captured a record 10.9 rating.  More

5/24/02

Longest race tough on engines This weekend's Coca-Cola 600 will be the longest race of the season and the first 600-mile race that NASCAR has run since instituting the one-engine rule back in February. Cars were allowed to change engines at this year's Daytona 500, but NASCAR decided that the one-engine rule would apply for this weekend's Coca-Cola 600 at the Lowe's Motor Speedway. Despite the long nature of the race, Roush Racing's head motor builder Tom Ghent says that the rule shouldn't have a huge effect in the way teams go about preparing for Sunday night's race. "The basic assembly of the engine did not change," said Ghent. "We stuck with what we've been running. At California we had run upwards of 700 miles on the engine (during the race and practice sessions). The engines came back through an inspection process and we are comfortable with the wear that the test showed." Ghent says the engine package that will be used in the Roush cars this weekend is very similar to the one used at California. "We did not see a need to change from that package that we ran at California," added Ghent. However he did say that a few extra precautions would be in order for the 600-mile race. "The one thing to watch is that we will probably be a little more conservative with the tune-up," said Ghent. "We'll probably want to use a little more fuel and keep the pistons a little cooler for that extra 100 miles that we are going to put on them for Sunday night. Ghent went on to add that like any race problems were possible, but that it most likely would not be due to the length of the race. "We don't expect problems, and that is based on the wear and tear characteristics of the components that we have. If there is a problem, it probably is due to a weak part that might have broken in a 500-mile race as well as a 600 mile race."

5/24/02

Kurt Busch's Official Statement On NASCAR's Ruling NASCAR handed down a $10,000 fine to Roush Racing driver Kurt Busch for his post-race comments after last Saturday's all-star Winston event. "This is an expensive lesson," said Busch, just before qualifying on Thursday afternoon at Lowe's Motor Speedway. "I hope I never get another lesson like this." Busch and the No. 97 Rubbermaid team are busy preparing for this Sunday's Coca-Cola 600. Busch, who is currently third in the Winston Cup point standings said that he is looking forward to putting the incident behind him and moving on to this Sunday's race. Neither Kurt Busch nor Roush Racing plan to appeal the ruling.

5/24/02

Scenes from Carb Day at Indy  by Earl Ma/BRG
collins-andre.jpg dismore3.jpg boesel3.jpg redon4.jpg boesel4.jpg
ts-ec.jpg fisher4.jpg maserati.jpg epperly.jpg kurtis.jpg

5/24/02

The best don't always win  This Jim Litke article pretty much sums up the situation in Indy Car racing.  Guys with deep pockets are around at the end because they can afford to lose every battle and still win most wars of attrition.

5/24/02

Manning eyes CART ride  Darren Manning is hoping an impressive performance in the current ASCAR season could secure him a Champ Car drive. The BAR test driver has been told he must acquire more oval experience to break through into the CART series. Manning therefore joined Jason Plato at the Bintcliffe Sport team in the ASCAR series, which takes place on the oval circuits - Rockingham and European Motor Speedway. Manning told Ananova ahead of this weekend's round in Germany: "I am seriously looking at a way into Champ Car. That could be through NASCAR, ASCAR or the new ERL (European Racing League).  "I've been chatting to a few teams in America and they've all been saying, 'you're street racing is fine but you would need more experience of oval racing'.

5/24/02

Indy 500, REAL numbers please  Dear AutoRacing1.com, The IRL and ESPN announced (Quote) "the estimated total distribution for the 86th Indianapolis 500 will reach more than 200 countries and 325 million households worldwide". There is something very wrong with these numbers: How can you reach more than 200 countries in the world, where there are not even 200 countries. According to the United Nations website the UN-membership count stands at 189. Non-members of the UN are Switzerland and the Holy See (Vatican City) and of course the youngest country in the world, East Timor. That brings the total count of countries in the world to 192. Don't be fooled by the "CIA World Factbook 2001" which lists (Quote) "267 nations, dependant areas, other and miscellaneous entries". Among many others, the CIA lists the Palmyra Atoll (part of the USA), the Isle of Man (Great Britain), the uninhabited Bouvet Island (Norway), the Arctic and Atlantic Ocean as countries. Nevertheless, under "Heads of State" the CIA lists 195 countries. That said, let's take a look at the real possible numbers of countries where the Indy 500 may be seen: There are roughly 50 Countries in Africa, most of them with only 1 or 2 channels and local programming. They don't care about the Indy 500 in Timbuktu or Mombasa (and not many people own a tv set). That reduces the number of countries to roughly 150 (with the concession that 5 or so African stations might carry it). States of former Soviet Union: Total of 14 countries where I have never seen an autorace being broadcast live or time delayed in full length (and I worked there for 10 months). Count is down to 136. Same with the states of the former Eastern Bloc (like Bulgaria, Romania, Mongolia etc). Down to 130. Look at the world map and count the remote islands (Tonga for example), which have no tv station or 1 or 2 at best. Also: No interest, because many of the few people living there don't know that something like the Indy 500 exists. There's a whole bunch of those remote islands. Count is down to 100 countries. What about the Saudia Arabian states, or Nepal or..... The real figure where the Indy 500 can possibly be seen is closer to something like 70 at best. Now do your own math: How many TV stations in those countries can afford to pay the license fee for a live broadcast? In how many countries is the Indy 500 exclusively on Pay-TV (like Germany, where Premiere has only about 2,4 to 2,5 million subscribers compared to roughly 40 million households)? I only ask ESPN to give us the real numbers, please.  Arnold G., Germany

5/24/02

Not everything going IRL's way  The IRL might be on a roll right now with the addition of Honda to its series, and there's no disputing they hit a homerun with that announcement.  However, what's being played down are the two loses they had during the same time.  Ford backed out of a deal to also be in the IRL, and today we learn that Lola has told the IRL no as well.  It remains to be seen how this all plays out, and whether CART will bounce back from this recent turn of events, but we hear Chris Pook still has a few tricks up his sleeve.  Let the games begin.....

5/24/02

Verstappen loses Arrows case  According to this ITV-F1 article, Jos Verstappen has lost his court case against Arrows over a contract dispute. The Dutch racer was released by Arrows at the start of the year after Heinz-Harald Frentzen was chosen to drive for the team. Arrows have denied the court case was over Vertstappen’s supposed 2002 deal. Instead, the team says the dispute was over money Verstappen feels he should have been paid for last season. A statement from the team read: "Arrows has not had any claim made against it by Verstappen in respect to Arrows’ termination of Verstappen’s driving contract. "Verstappen did bring a claim against Arrows for monies he believed were owed from 2001, which the court rejected. In those proceedings, the court was also satisfied that Arrows had its own valid damages claim against Verstappen for breach of contract." Arrows have reportedly counter-sued Verstappen for comments made about team-mate Enrique Bernoldi which scuppered a major sponsorship deal.

5/24/02

Barnhart warns no-blocking  In this Star news article, Indy Racing League vice president Brian Barnhart, who heads competition, abruptly ended the 90-minute session and stormed out of the room when the drivers wouldn't stop arguing about alleged blocking in past races, particularly last year's 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. A driver is considered blocking when he leaves his normal racing line to prevent a specific opponent from passing. "There's holding on every play in the NFL and a foul on every possession in the NBA," said Barnhart after the Carburetion Day practice ended. "Part of refereeing is to judge what's going on, to see who's gaining the advantage. "But if (the drivers) want to run the risk of blocking, they'll have to pay the price."

5/24/02

Monaco Thursday driver-by-driver analysis

Jarno Trulli (1): "The handling is great, and still more speed to find. I was able to push straight away".
Jenson Button (10): "Pretty good, although the car isn't perfect with some understeer. More time to come".   More....

5/24/02

F1 Hot News
Hakkinen Yet To Decide

Monaco Upgrade For 2006

Renault "No Chance" of Beating Ferrari

Williams Designing New 2002-Chassis

GPT Not Planning F1 Take-Over

Sato's Jordan Seat Secure

Jordan: "You Are Killing Jean Todt!"

F1 Pulling Out Of Crisis?

Minardi Spiral Into Crisis

Ecclestone Issues Stern Warning

5/24/02

Penske's finger's all over Honda IRL move  In this ESPN.com article, Robin Miller paints a scenario that says Penske's fingerprints are all over these deals and it's not surprising considering he's always one step ahead of the posse. Or, as former driver Danny Sullivan once so eloquently put it "When the music stops, Roger always has a chair." And while it's still hard to imagine Penske helping to torpedo the series he helped start and fund, don't lose sight of the fact The Captain always does what's best for The Captain. He's still a huge shareholder in Bill France's International Speedway Corporation and ISC is married to Tony George. CART should have seen it coming. After its sweep at Indy last May, Penske protested against running a full page ad in USA Today. One of his lieutenants said R.P. didn't want to throw it in Tony's face and now that all makes sense.

5/24/02

Honda played CART like a fiddle  It's quite apparent that Honda played CART like a fiddle the past six months.  Let's replay the events:

1.  We won't be racing at all in the USA in 2003

2.  We don't like the low-tech 3.5 L IRL engines

3.  Will will only do a 3.5 L N/A engine if it is IRL ++ meaning higher tech

4.  CART is mending the fences with us, and we like their higher-tech series

5.  If it makes business sense we will be in the IRL and CART, but not before 2003

6.  Today Honda announces they will be in the IRL, not in 204, but in 2003!  Honda announces they will only be in the IRL, not in CART.

7.  Today Honda announces an IRL race at its track in Motegi, Japan, and one has to wonder if CART will be invited back.

So why did Honda play CART like a fiddle, turn around and abandon a series they supported for so long and one they pooh-pooed for so long, even though both Robert Clarke and Tom Elliott made recent statements in the press more favorable to CART?  Perhaps it was the way CART handled last years pop-off valve situation.  Or perhaps it was because CART went the IRL engine route against Honda's wishes, and after the CART imposed deadline.  As they say, paybacks are sometimes a bitch.  While we're sure there is more to their decision than that, on the surface, it certainly appears that way.

5/23/02

Team Penske wins pitstop competition  Marlboro Team Penske and driver Helio Castroneves won the Coors Indy 500 Pit Stop Challenge on May 23 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the record seventh victory for Penske Racing in the annual Indianapolis 500 contest that showcases the work of race pit crews. 2001 Indianapolis 500 winner Castroneves and Marlboro Team Penske defeated Target Chip Ganassi Racing and driver Jeff Ward in the final. Marlboro Team Penske changed four tires and completed a simulated fueling of the No. 3 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone driven by Castroneves in 8.555 seconds. Target Chip Ganassi Racing finished similar service for Ward’s No. 22 Target Chip Ganassi Racing G Force/Chevrolet/Firestone in 10.3433 seconds. The team earned $42,500 for the victory, with $5,000 of that sum donated to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Indiana Chapter. “It’s a team sport, and I tell you, it’s fantastic to have this special win,” Castroneves said. “The Indy 500 is the best race in the world, and for these guys here, winning Indy is good, too. But for these guys to win this, it’s tops. They’re the ones doing everything; I’m just pushing the brakes and leaving the pits.” While this was a record-setting win for Penske Racing, it was the first for the team since 1988. The other victories came in 1981-83 and 1985-86. Bobby Unser and Danny Sullivan went on to win the Indianapolis 500 three days after Penske Racing won this contest in 1981 and 1985, respectively. “It’s a great momentum builder for the race,” Penske Racing President Tim Cindric said. “We thank everyone for the opportunity to do this for the crews because they get their day in the sun, and believe me, they put their effort in to make eight-second stops every time. They don’t just happen; they’ve worked hard all week.” Marlboro Team Penske produced three consecutive eight-second stops to earn the victory. Castroneves edged teammate Gil de Ferran and the other half of the Marlboro Team Penske crew in the semifinals with a time of 8.7355 seconds. de Ferran and his crew were clocked at 9.7465. In the quarterfinals of the 12-car competition, Castroneves defeated 2000 Indy Racing League champion Hemelgarn Racing and 1996 Indianapolis 500 winner Buddy Lazier. Castroneves and crew were clocked at 8.9355; Lazier and crew at 11.9955. Castroneves and Marlboro Team Penske received a first-round bye.. IRL

5/23/02

IRL to race in Japan  The Indy Racing League and Twin Ring Motegi, north of Tokyo, have entered into a three-year agreement for the league to conduct its first races outside of the United States, it was announced today. The first race will be in 2003 at a date to be announced later. “Now that the Indy Racing League has a stable schedule in the United States, we are pleased to take racing based on the heritage of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race to Japan,” said Tony George, president and CEO of the Indy Racing League and Indianapolis Motor Speedway. “It is especially fitting that our first international venue will be at Twin Ring Motegi, one of the finest ovals in the world.” George and a delegation of Indy Racing League executives visited Twin Ring Motegi in April to observe the 1.5-mile track under racing conditions. “We were very impressed by the facility and by the interest of the track’s management team in having a League event at Twin Ring Motegi,” George said. “We expect this to be an excellent partnership.” One of the newest racetracks in Japan, Twin Ring Motegi (Tochigi Prefecture) was established in August 1997. In addition to the American-style oval on which the Indy Racing League will compete, Twin Ring Motegi has a European-style road course of 2.8 miles. Since its opening, Twin Ring Motegi has been a venue for many major motorsports events. Built in picturesque natural surroundings, Twin Ring Motegi offers many exciting motorsports programs for race fans. The facility also hosts a luxury hotel and the Honda Collection Hall, exhibiting many Honda products playing an important role in the automaker’s history. The Indy Racing League is an all-oval, open-wheel series with 15 events in 14 U.S. markets in 2002. Its premier event, the Indianapolis 500-Mile Race, will take place Sunday, May 26, with television coverage starting at 11 a.m. (EDT) on ABC. IRL

5/23/02

Kanaan fastest on Carb Day  CART driver Tony Kanaan was the fastest driver during Coors Carb Day practice for the 86th Indianapolis 500 today with a top lap of 39.8667 seconds, 225.752 mph in the No. 17 Hollywood Mo Nunn Racing G Force/Chevrolet/Firestone. 2001 Indy Racing League champion Sam Hornish Jr. was second at 39.9504, 225.279 in the No. 4 Pennzoil Panther Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone. 1999 IRL champion Greg Ray was third at 40.0045, 224.975 in the No. 11 A.J. Foyt Racing/Harrah's Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone. Quotes

5/23/02

Dallenbach wins $11 million lawsuit NASCAR driver Wally Dallenbach, who claimed Darwin Oordt's failure as a team owner ''ruined my racing career and completely changed my life,'' has won a reported $11.3 million judgment. That is the size of the settlement being reported by media in Charlotte, N.C., where the breach-of-contract suit was heard. Dallenbach yesterday told The Tennessean the figure ''is in that area.'' The judgment, if it stands, is believed to be the largest of its kind in NASCAR history. ''All I can say is that I'm glad it's over and I think that the judgment speaks for itself,'' Dallenbach said. ''I signed a three-year contract to drive for Darwin, and when we got to Daytona [in 2001] he didn't have a car. I had passed up a lot of other driving opportunities, counting on that ride. ''When Darwin's deal fell apart, it ruined my racing career and completely changed my life. I had a family to raise, bills to pay and no income.'' The Tennessean

5/23/02

Sadler to replace Mast  Hermie Sadler will replace ailing driver Rick Mast this weekend in the Donlavey Racing Ford Taurus, according to car owner Junie Donlavey. Mast said he has not felt good physically for several weeks and is undergoing tests to determine the cause. The doctors have recommended he step out of driving at least for this weekend's Coca-Cola Racing Family 600 at Lowe's Motor Speedway. Mast competed in The Winston qualifying races last Saturday night at the Charlotte track.

5/23/02

SPEED Channel announces NASCAR plans for 2nd-half  As the first half of the NASCAR Winston Cup Series race season hits the backstretch, SPEED Channel is setting up for two tires and gas at the break, signing Michael Waltrip to fill in for big brother Darrell on SPEED’s live Friday night race preview Trackside with Larry McReynolds and Jeff Hammond. Veteran motor sports broadcaster Mike Joy will step in as host of Trackside, taking the second-half handoff from Steve Byrnes, who is committed to Totally NASCAR for the remainder of the season. The pair will share Trackside hosting duties again in 2003. “Michael will be a great addition to Trackside, keeping the seat warm for Darrell and bringing his own personality to the group,” said SPEED Channel president Jim Liberatore. “Darrell has made the commitment to his family to limit his travel over the second half of the season, but we expect he will be popping his head in with us from time to time as the season moves along. “This also gives fans a unique opportunity to get Michael’s perspective before each race weekend and then hear his post-race analysis on Monday’s Inside Winston Cup. Michael Waltrip will join the team as a “drop-in” guest on this Friday’s edition of Trackside, broadcast live from the middle of Speed Street festivities in uptown Charlotte, N.C.. His will assume his regular seat on the show in July for the NASCAR Winston Cup race at Chicagoland Speedway. Look for live NASCAR programming to continue on SPEED Channel during the second half of the season, with live coverage tentatively scheduled for 11 qualifying rounds and 12 editions of Winston Cup Happy Hour. SPEED Channel, the nation’s fastest growing sports cable network, is the first and only 24-hour cable network devoted exclusively to motor sports and the human fascination for speed. In addition to extensive original NASCAR programming, SPEED Channel is home to much of the world’s marquee racing events including CART, F1, Classic Cars, LeMans, the American LeMans Series, World Rally and car shows from around the globe. Currently seen in more than 51 million homes, SPEED Channel was acquired by Fox Cable Networks Group in July 2001.

5/23/02

Walkinshaw drops rugby  Tom Walkinshaw, who is the head of Formula One team Arrows and owns Gloucester rugby club, has resigned from his post heading up Premier Rugby. He will be replaced by Charles Jillings, of the Harlequins club, for a two-year term.

5/23/02

ABC show ad to appear on FOX  Stanton Barrett will be carrying a unique new sponsor in the NASCAR Busch Grand National race Saturday at Lowe’s Motor Speedway near Charlotte. Barrett, driver of the Bojangles’/OdoBan Ford, has been nominated for a World Stunts Award, a worldwide program that honors the best in movie and television stunt work. The awards show will be televised live worldwide by ABC Saturday night. Because of his work in Jurassic Park III, Barrett was nominated in the Best Water Work category. Other movies nominated are Apocalypse Now Redux, American Outlaws, The Animal and Rush Hour 2. ABC’s telecast of the World Stunt Awards will be on the rear deck lid of Barrett’s car during Saturday’s Busch Grand National race at the 1.5-mile speedway. Most observers feel this is the first time a major network show has been a sponsor on a race car for an event televised by a second major network.

5/23/02

Earnhardt autopsy photo update  Whether records that were once open to public scrutiny can be sealed retroactively was the key issue between attorneys arguing both sides of the Dale Earnhardt autopsy photo debate before an appeals court today. "The right exists when the record is created," insisted Tom Julin, a Miami attorney representing The Independent Florida Alligator, a student-run newspaper in Gainesville. The Alligator wants the 5th District Court of Appeal to reverse a ruling last year by Circuit Judge Joseph Will that sealed the Earnhardt photos. The Florida Legislature then adopted a new law restricting access to such photos. Theresa Earnhardt attended the hour-long hearing, along with an entourage of attorneys and media relations specialists. She declined to talk before or after the hearing, during which only attorneys were allowed to argue their respective points before the three-judge panel. The appeals judges could rule anytime from a week to six months or could pass the issue on to the Florida Supreme Court.  Daytona Beach News Journal

5/23/02

Sadler trying to get out of Wood Brothers contract early Elliott Sadler, who announced several weeks ago that he would like to leave the Wood Brothers team at the end of the season, said Wednesday he made a proposal aimed at settling his contract with the team. Sadler said he had offered to give up his half of the team’s winnings between now and the end of the season. "That way the team would have more money to hire a good driver," said Sadler, who added he hoped co-owners Eddie and Len Wood would accept his proposal by Friday.

5/23/02

DEI employee charged  Joseph George Katula III, of Concord, NC, has been charged with seven counts of felony larceny by employee in the theft of $500 worth of auto parts from the racing enterprise, Iredell Sheriff Phil Redmond said this morning. He was taken to Iredell County Jail on a $10,000 bond and has a June court date. Katula started working at Dale Earnhardt Inc. nine months ago, Redmond said. Katula worked in the shop area rebuilding rear axle gears, the sheriff said. The owner of a local used parts store called DEI when a man sold auto parts to the owner for $1,000. The owner wanted to make sure the man had permission to sell the DEI items, Redmond said. Rex Garrett, a DEI supervisor, found that the parts had been stolen, the sheriff said. Sheriff's Detective Sgts. Allen Sipes and Neil Hayes arrested and charged Katula this week. ThatsRacin.com

5/23/02

Hakkinen still ponders comeback  Former champion Mika Hakkinen has not ruled out a Formula One comeback next season and expects to drive for McLaren if he does return. But the Finn is in no hurry to make his mind up. "I do have quite a few weeks still before making a decision," he told reporters at Monte Carlo. "Let's see how the weekend goes. There's plenty of time, I'm not getting stressed about it," he added.

5/23/02

New Cosworth CART engine hits dyno  Cosworth Racing has secured its future involvement in American Racing with the announcement of a new engine program for 2003 and beyond. The Cosworth XG - a derivative of the 2000 CART Manufacturer's Championship winning Cosworth XF - will make its debut in CART at the beginning of the 2003 season and development work on the new powerplant is currently running ahead of schedule. The XG program will sit alongside Cosworth's other major activities, which include; F1, WRC, Motorbike racing and the Commercial Engineering Group.   More

5/23/02

Motorola predicts rise in cell phone shipments  Motorola, the world's second-largest mobile phone maker, on Tuesday said that it expected 2002 global cellular phone shipments of 420 million for the industry, up from about 400 million sold in 2001. "We haven't seen anything since our last earnings call that would change that at this point in time," Motorola chairman and chief executive Christopher Galvin said at the Lehman Brothers wireless conference here. Mr. Galvin also said that he still expected a second-quarter loss of 4 cents a share, excluding special items, on sales of US$6.3 billion to US$6.4 billion. He reiterated the company's expectation of posting a profit in the third quarter and said that he still expected Motorola to post a profit of 4 cents for the full year even though sales were expected to decline 5 per cent to 10 per cent from last year's US$29.5 billion.  Reuters

5/23/02

CART's failure to announce final engine manufacturers makes Toyota ponders its exit  CART still has not announced it's final engine rules for 2003.  In addition, no CART teams have committed to buying Toyota engines for 2003.  These two issues, and others, have led Toyota to balk at its involvement in CART next year.  White said Toyota has begun a joint study with NASCAR to determine the feasibility of entering the Craftsman Truck Series. No decision on that is imminent. White said the company must decide by mid-summer whether to continue with the CART program it started in 1996. Toyota needs paying customers and marketable on-track competition to stay. "It has to make business sense and it has to make marketing sense," White said. "We're still looking for both of those."  From what AutoRacing1.com understands, CART has to finalize exactly what companies will supply engines in 2003.  We expect that final announcement in June.  Then, per CART's new rules, each manufacturer must announce who it's two 'factory' or preferred teams, are.  This new rule prevents a single manufacturer from signing all the best teams.  Then, after all 'factory' teams are chosen, the rest of the teams go into a hat and divided equally among all manufacturers.  All teams get equal engines, but the factory teams are, in the manufacturers opinion, their best teams in terms of the ability to win races.  MC

5/23/02

F1 News
Schumi Scraps Dream-Home

Toyota Sign New Sponsor

McLaren Write-Off 2002

Renault Set To Challenge Ferrari

No Team Orders At Monaco?

Sato and Heidfeld Cleared To Race

Villeneuve: 'Very Little Has Changed'

Happy 30th Rubens Barrichello!

Montoya Amused By World's Reaction

Villeneuve Slams Schumacher

5/23/02

Montreal wall moved back  According to reports, the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal has had a much-needed facelift to its daunting final corner. The so-called 'Bienvenue a Quebec' corner, scene of many a Grand Prix driver's demise, has had its infamous wall moved a meter back from the original racing line. Damon Hill, Michael Schumacher, Rubens Barrichello and Nick Heidfeld remember their Montreal-headaches well - and Jacques Villeneuve, home-town hero, has buried his mount in the Quebec-concrete more times than any. 'I've hit it enough times, anyway', said a bemused Jacques, 'So I'll stay far away from that one'. Rubens Barrichello, Ferrari driver, says he loves the city and circuit in Montreal. 'I love going to Montreal', he said. 'Since I went there first it was great, I love the city, the atmosphere at the Grand Prix is great and I particularly like the track'. After the Monaco winner sprays his champagne, the Formula One circus will prepare to cross the Atlantic for the annual Canadian Grand Prix.

  Much More...click on 2002 archives button below

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