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DATE News (chronologically)
6/23/00
Tony Kanaan medical update - Tony Kanaan is resting comfortably at his home in Miami after injuries sustained in a qualifying session accident last Saturday at Detroit.  He was released Tuesday from Detroit Receiving Hospital, where he underwent surgery Saturday night to repair a broken left forearm. His injuries also included four fractured ribs on his left side and a mild concussion. Kanaan was transported from Detroit to Miami via private aircraft provided courtesy of Team Penske.  On Monday, Kanaan will travel to Indianapolis to begin his rehabilitation under the care of Dr. Terry Trammel. Kanaan also plans to attend next weekend's CART FedEx Championship Series event in Cleveland. His recovery is expected to last four to six weeks.  "I want to say a very special thank you to Roger Penske for flying me home from Detroit in one of his aircraft. I can't say how much that means to me, especially under the circumstances. I also want to thank everyone for all the cards and letters and gifts that they have been sending my way since the accident. It always amazes me how close the racing community really is, and how everyone always seems to come together in times like these. I am very much looking forward to getting back in the race car, but I want to make sure everything heals properly. Only time will tell. Hopefully it won't take too much time. Next week, I am looking forward to seeing everybody at Cleveland. It will be strange to be at a CART race and not be driving. But that will happen soon enough. Thank you to everybody." 
6/23/00
Andy Granatelli proposes CART/IRL solution - Andy Granatelli has been going around telling folks the solution for the CART/IRL situation is simple, the IRL should run strictly ovals and CART strictly road and street courses.  In addition they should agree to not schedule any races on the same weekend.  Other than that they can remain distinctly separate entities.
6/23/00
Tony George nixes any quick reconciliation with CART - According to Autoweek, Tony George has stated "I don't think the replacement of Andrew Craig helps or hurts the reconciliation process".
6/23/00
Yosemite Motor Speedway in works - According to Autoweek, a private investor group is very close to building a 1.25 mile tri-oval speedway near Madera, California, about 100 miles southwest of Yosemite National Park.  The track might be ready as early as September 2001, with an initial seating capacity of 50,000, and room to expand to 100,000.  The track will be built on a 390 acre site on state highway 99 not too far from Fresno.
6/22/00
New exhaust system for Arrows - Arrows has tested a new exhaust system that is designed to keep heat away from the back of the car and enable the team to run a lighter gearbox.  The exhaust is said to be pointed upward like towers from the sidepods.
6/22/00
Provisional 2001 Formula 1 schedule published - 
Australian GP  March 4 
Malaysian GP  March 18 
Brazilian GP  April 1 
San Marino GP  April 15 
Spanish GP  April 29 
British GP  May 13 
Monaco GP  May 27 
Canadian GP  June 10 
European GP  June 24 
French GP  July 8 
Austrian GP  July 22 
German GP  August 5 
Hungarian GP  August 19 
Belgian GP  September 2 
Italian GP  September 16 
American GP  September 30 
Japanese GP  October 14 
6/21/00
CART to reduce HP 150 to 200 - Bobby Rahal stated on his teleconference today that CART is looking at ways to take 150 to 200hp out of the current engines for next year.  Mark Handford told us that the cars have way too much power now and using the Handford brake to slow them down is just a band-aide solution.   We assume CART will either set an rpm limit, or devise some sort of air intake 'restrictor-plate' to reduce HP next year until a new engine formula is announced.
6/21/00
Petty/STP Parade - Richard Petty and John Andretti will be in San Francisco on June 21 as the STP #43 Celebration Tour makes a stop there. Starting at the north end of the Golden Gate Bridge at Vista Point, Petty, Andretti and the STP #43 car will drive across the bridge, travel along the Embarcadero and pull into Willie Mays Plaza. The parade is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. with the caravan pulling into the plaza at 10:30am. At Willie Mays Plaza, Petty and Andretti will meet and greet guests, answer questions and sign some autographs. The Winston Cup race at Sears Point will be the last race run with STP as the primary sponsor of the #43. Cheerios takes over at Daytona in the Pepsi 400
6/20/00
Spain's Jerez circuit to be upgraded The Jerez circuit, site of the Spanish GP each year, will get a $20 million upgrade for 2001.  The entire track will be resurfaced and the pits moved to what is now the backstraight. 
6/20/00
President Rahal to be guest at White House Interim CART President and Chief Executive Officer Bobby Rahal and his wife, Debi, will be the guests of President and Mrs. Bill Clinton at The White House this evening, at a state dinner in honor of His Majesty Mohammed VI, King of Morocco.  The Rahals will be among the guests at the black tie dinner honoring the Moroccan monarch, who arrived in Washington, D.C. this morning. It will mark the Rahals' first visit to The White House as guests. 
6/20/00
Pitstop changes in store for CART The technical committee met Thursday prior to Detroit and discussed ways to make pitstops safer.  Paul Tracy ran over the left foot of his right front wheel changer in Detroit, breaking four of his toes.  Crew members have been getting hit on pitlane at an alarming rate and something must be done.  The committee is looking at:
1.  Single point refueling devices
2.  Air jack valves at back of the car
3.  Leaving the cars up on the jacks until the refueling is complete
4.  Requiring crew members to remain behind the wall until the car comes to a complete stop
6/20/00
CART to run high downforce wings at Road America CART has decided that rather than run the Handford Device at Road America as originally planned, they will use a very high downforce (5,400 lbs) rear wing with a lot of drag to slow the cars on the straights.  This will mean straight speeds will drop but cornering speeds will be up significantly.  Corners that were not taken flat-out previously, may be now.  We expect this wing will make fuel mileage more of a factor than it already was at the 4.0 mile course.
6/20/00
Changes in store for Handford Device Update As reported here first 2-days ago, It was confirmed by Jon Beekhius on RPM2Night that CART will indeed run the superspeedway Handford Device on all remaining ovals this year.  6/18/00 - In an exclusive interview (look for full audio of interview later) with Lola Aerodynamicist Mark Handford (pictured right), AutoRacing1.com had the opportunity to talk to the man who developed the original Handford Device as well as the modified versions used this season on short and medium ovals. We quizzed him on the reported turbulence problems the drivers have experienced running behind the Handford Device on these circuits.  He informed us that the device should have had more track testing before being implemented.  He and CART have been working on the problem.  The recommendation will be to use the original superspeedway low-downforce Handford Device on the remaining oval races on the circuit.  This wing produces less turbulence and, although not completely eliminating turbulence, should improve the racing somewhat.
6/20/00
Andretti and Mears on Inside CART today  This week’s “Inside CART,” airing Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m. EDT on ESPN2, will profile Michael Andretti from his home in Nazareth, Pa. and three-time CART champion, Rick Mears.  Also featured on this week’s show will be highlights and standings from last weekend’s Tenneco Automotive Grand Prix of Detroit, and a discussion on the rewards of the FedEx Championship Series international travel schedule with PacWest pilots Mauricio Gugelmin and Mark Blundell. 
6/20/00
CART to begin negotiations with ESPN  CART's current TV contract with ESPN runs through the 2001 season.  This summer CART and ESPN will begin to renegotiate a new contract.  Their current contracts yields CART about $5 million in TV revenue annually.  The IRL gets over $12 million annually for half as many races.  However, the IRL has the Indy 500.  Given that CART's schedule is increasing even further next year, we would expect CART to want at least as much as the IRL is getting from its parent company, ABC.  If an agreement can't be reached, don't be surprised if CART tries to bid out the contract as NASCAR did.  CART desperately needs a TV partner that is willing to help promote the series, just like ESPN did, and continues to do, with NASCAR.
6/20/00
Safety changes made at Laguna Seca's Corkscrew  As a result of Gonzalo Rodriguez's fatal accident at Laguna Seca last year, the raceway is implementing a number of changes to the Corkscrew turn.  The concrete wall and oak tree on the inside of the turn was moved back about 20 feet to improve driver visibility.  The runoff area at the top of the corkscrew where Gonzalo was killed has been increased 20' to 50' and a FIA-style gravel trap has been added.  FIA-spec stepped curbing was added to the driver's right (at turn 9 too).  The runoff area at Turn 5 was also extended.  If you remember, CART added additional rows of tires after the accident last September.  That was a quick fix for that race weekend.  A cushioned barrier will also be in place behind the gravel trap in front of the concrete wall.
6/20/00
Did you know?  Did you know that the Ford/Cosworth XD used a duplex roller chain drive for the actuation of the twin overhead camshafts, whereas the new XF uses a gear drive.  The reason for the change, and something they learned from their F-1 program, is that when you start to turn an engine in the vicinity of 16,000 rpm, you reach the limit of a chain drive.  Although the chain drives were reliable in the XD engine, last year they were being run way outside the manufacturers design specifications.  Gear drives are not uncommon to race engines, in fact they were used on the original Ford/Cosworth DFV engine.
6/19/00
Drivers still use clutch  We spoke to Memo Gidley today about shifting a Champ Car with the sequential shifter.  We were under the impression than the drivers were not using the clutch very much with the new shift mechanism.  That is not true, on downshifts the drivers are still using the clutch and blipping the throttle to match the engine rev's.  Many don't use the clutch on upshifts. 
6/18/00
Meet the stars of CHAMPS


The good guy (L - Kip Padue Motorola suit), Estella Warren, the young female girlfriend Sophia (C), Til Schweiger, the bad-guy (R - Target suit)

Good-guy vs. Bad-guy (L photo).  Sylvester Stallone (Nextel suit) with Renny Harlin, CART's Keith Allo and rest of main cast (R Photo).  As can be seen from these pictures, Nextel, Motorola and Target will be the three primary sponsors featured in the movie.

6/18/00
Tony Kanaan Sunday update  Tony Kanaan, driver of the #55 Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing Mercedes-Benz Reynard, underwent successful surgery Saturday evening to repair two broken bones in his left forearm sustained in a final qualifying session crash earlier in the day. Dr. David Karges of Detroit Receiving Hospital performed the 2-hour, 15-minute procedure that involved the insertion of two metal plates and 14 screws to repair the forearm 
injury. Kanaan also suffered four cracked ribs and a mild concussion in Saturday’s single-car accident. He will remain at Detroit Receiving Hospital through this evening and is expected to be released Monday. Doctors said they expect a recovery period of four to six weeks. 
6/18/00
Champ cars at Texas Motor Speedway  AutoRacing1.com had the opportunity to ask Lola's Mark Handford (center) and Frank Derriere (R) about the suitability of the current Champ Car suspensions on the high-banks (24 degrees) of the Texas Motor Speedway.  We were told that the added suspension loads would have to be evaluated, but there is no reason to believe the loads would not be within allowable levels.  The bumps, however, would have to be evaluated, and some beefing up of the members may be required next year should CART elect to race at Texas Motor Speedway as previously rumored.
6/18/00
The morning warm-up  As can be seen from the photo at right, this mornings warm-up at Belle Isle was run in a light rain.  All the drivers ran on rain tires and all told us that the track was slippery.  All drivers echoed the same sentiment, the mornings practice times were pretty much irrelevant as they expect the track to be dry by race time,  Hence they didn't make any changes to compensate for the wet conditions.
6/18/00
The lowdown on CART's management change  AutoRacing1.com has learned the story behind why the sudden management change at CART.  We are told that Andrew Craig's contract was up in 6 months.  He approached the CART board asking for a clear understanding that his contract would be renewed.  The CART board was not ready to give him a clear 'yes' at this time.  With his future uncertain, Craig chose to resign effective immediately (Thursday we believe).  Hence the reason for the impromptu board meeting that was called Friday to decide who would lead CART.  
6/18/00
Toyota Atlantics - Dan Wheldon places 3rd in Montreal  Englishman Dan Wheldon scored his third ‘podium’ of the season on Saturday when he finished third in the fifth round of the 2000 CART Toyota Atlantic Championship race which was held on the famous Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal in support of today’s Formula One Grand Prix.Formula One team managers had their first opportunity to see 21-year old Wheldon – who began his career by successfully racing karts against Jenson Button – in action in his Jayhard / BG Products Swift Toyota entered by Champ Car team PPI Motorsports.  A troubled qualifying session on Friday meant that Dan Wheldon was not on the front row of the grid for the first time this season. He started his debut race in Montreal from a relatively lowly fifth place on the starting grid, but succeeded in moving up to third by the end of the 27 lap race to be the highest-placed rookie in the event.  Dan Wheldon’s third place earned him 14 valuable points which strengthen his second placing in the 2000 CART Toyota Atlantic Championship. 
6/17/00
Tony Kanaan update - Tony Kanaan, driver of the #55 Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing Mercedes-Benz Reynard, was injured in a single-car crash during final qualifying for Sunday’s Tenneco Automotive Grand Prix of Detroit. Kanaan was scheduled to undergo surgery to repair a compound fracture to his left forearm this evening at Detroit Receiving Hospital and is expected to miss the next six to eight weeks of competition. He also fractured four ribs on his left side and sustained a mild concussion. He is expected to be released late Sunday or early Monday. The Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing team has withdrawn its entry from Sunday’s event and has yet to determine a replacement driver beginning next weekend at Portland, Ore.  MORRIS NUNN  - “First of all, I speak for the entire Hollywood/Mo Nunn Racing organization when I say our thoughts and prayers are with Tony, and we hope for his speedy recovery. He’s a very determined young man and we have every confidence he will be back at 100 percent before too long. The doctors said he was in considerable pain, but that he is in very good hands. “Every indication, from what we have seen of the race car, is that he clipped the inside wall with his right-front wheel – we found pieces of a banner in the wheel and that was the only indication of contact on that side of the car – and it appears he then was thrown across the track into the outside wall. We’ll have to look closely at the data before we can try and determine what might have gone wrong.  “It’s very unfortunate for Tony that he’ll likely be out six to eight weeks, as the doctors have indicated. We obviously have some decisions to make as to who will fill in for him, but we don’t have those answers, yet.” 
6/17/00
Dan Wheldon impresses - England’s Dan Wheldon will start today’s CART Toyota Atlantic Championship race in Montreal from fifth place on the starting grid, having qualified yesterday in a time of 1minute 38.362 seconds (100.466 mph) – just .312 of a second shy of pole position.  The 21-year old Briton – who is currently second in the 2000 Toyota Atlantic series in his rookie season – took to the famous Circuit Gilles Villeneuve for the first time in yesterday morning’s 60-minute unofficial practice session in his PPI Motorsports-entered Jayhard / BG Products Swift Toyota. Dan Wheldon commented afterwards: ‘It’s a superb circuit to be on. It’s very much like the European circuits that I’m used to . . . The track was slippery, but it was OK.’  Today’s 27 lap race is scheduled for 4.20pm, local time – after qualifying for the Grand Prix Air Canada for Formula One cars.  Dan Wheldon will be out to impress the Formula One team managers at the only event of the season where F1 and Toyota Atlantics are on the same program.
6/17/00
Heard at Detroit
Bobby Rahal - "2001 Schedule to be released in several weeks"
Max Papis - "Bobby Rahal is going to take CART to new heights"
Barry Green - "Bobby is a fierce competitor and a great leader"
Kenny Brack - "I'm looking forward to a chance to drive in the rain again"
James Hardymon - "This deal all came together this morning"
Hal Whiteford - "The CART schedule will have between 20 and 25 races"
Bobby Rahal - "Indy certainly is important to all of us, but so is the entire CART series"
6/17/00
Seen at Detroit - II

 
Newman Haas crew measures car geometry (L).  The PPI crews even uses lasers (R)

6/17/00
Seen at Detroit - I


Roberto Moreno gets a nose change (L).  Kurosawa's new orange colors (R)

6/16/00
Paul Tracy in tire barrier
Paul Tracy has just crashed in Turn 7 in the morning warm-up.  Update to follow. Paul is OK
6/16/00
CART weekend TV times
Saturday - CART Qualifying 4:30 pm 1:30 pm ESPN2 (tape) 
Sunday - Pre-Race 10:30 am 7:30 am ESPN2 (live), Race - 1:00 pm 10:00 pm ESPN (live) 
6/16/00
Indy Lights News -  Scott Dixon (Invensys/Powerware/PacWest Lights Lola) will be shooting for his third-consecutive Dayton Indy Lights Championship victory when CART's top-rung development series heads to the Raceway on Belle Isle this weekend at the Tenneco Automotive Grand Prix of Detroit.  Dixon, 19, is just the fourth driver in Indy Lights history and the first since eventual series champion David Empringham in 1996 to sweep the opening two rounds of an Indy Lights season.  Dixon and the PacWest Lights team have clearly demonstrated championship-winning form on the race track. Dixon pressured pole winner and race leader Jonny Kane (KOOL Lola) into over-shooting Turn 1 at Long Beach and slipped by for the win four laps from the finish. The Milwaukee victory was even stronger as Dixon won the pole, led the most race laps and set the fastest lap of race he won by more than eight seconds.  If not for Dixon's fast start, Bright would likely be the talk of the 2000 Dayton Indy Lights season. He wasted little time in emerging as the fastest of the three drivers at Dorricott Racing, the 1999 championship winning team with Champ Car graduate Oriol Servia.  Mears, 22, has moved off to a typically consistent start, finishing fifth in each of the year's opening races for the second straight season. The third member of the Dorricott team is rookie and Barber Dodge graduate Townsend Bell (DirecPC Lola) who earned his first Indy Lights points with a sixth place finish at Milwaukee.

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