NASCAR Daytona Friday AM test speeds Friday’s morning test results:
1. Martin Truex Jr., Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota (204.722 mph) 2. Clint Bowyer, Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota (204.722) 3. Marcos Ambrose, Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 4. Aric Almirola Richard Petty Motorsports Ford 5. Mark Martin, Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota 6. Jamie McMurray, Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 7. Juan Pablo Montoya, Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 8. Jeff Gordon, Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 9. Kurt Busch, Phoenix Racing Chevrolet 10. AJ Allmendinger, Penske Racing Dodge
Kurt Busch got to Daytona International Speedway Thursday morning, and his team was still thrashing on his Phoenix Racing car a bit.
It reminded him of his NASCAR Southwest tour days, when the car would be rushed onto the team hauler and the team would have to install brake ducts and other odds and ends once it arrived at the track.
His new team couldn’t get the seat he wanted installed for Daytona because it ran out of time to make the brackets.
A year ago at Penske Racing, that would have been unacceptable.
Castroneves visits North American International Auto Show Helio Castroneves tweeted photos of exotic and concept cars Jan. 12 as he toured the North American International Auto Show at Cobo Center in Detroit with an NBC Sports camera crew in tow.
"I always like coming to the auto show here in Detroit," said Castroneves, who toured the Chevrolet display with Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President for Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. "The cars and the technology are really cool and I was happy to get a chance to see all of the great products GM and Chevrolet have this year and the concept cars for the future."
Wheldon Memorial Auction raises more than $600,000 An online auction of memorabilia dedicated to the late Dan Wheldon raised more than $600,000 for a memorial trust established for his family after the two-time Indianapolis 500 winner died from injuries sustained in an accident in October.
The organizers of the Dan Wheldon Memorial Auction released a final total of $627,203 on Jan. 13 after all items had been officially sold and the funds collected.
All seats are now taken for BMW’s return to the DTM: Dirk Werner has been confirmed as the sixth BMW Motorsport driver…
The 30-year-old is switching from GT racing to the DTM project. Last season, Werner successfully raced in the colors of BMW Team RLL in the American Le Mans Series, finishing third in the GT Drivers’ Championship.
"As the sixth driver, Dirk Werner is the ideal way to complete our driving line-up," said BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt. "Dirk convinced us he was the right man during the tests. The result of our efforts over the past few months is a line-up that we believe will achieve great things in the DTM. It boasts speed, experience and a host of international titles. I am pleased that our line-up has such an international feel to it. Two drivers from North America, a South American, a Brit, and two German drivers: our team also offers fans a lot of variety."
Dunlop 24H Dubai after 2 hours In the presence of His Highness Sheikh Juma Bin Maktoum Al Maktoum, the seventh running of the Dunlop 24H DUBAI got underway at Dubai Autodrome at 14.00 h local time. In bright sunshine and with temperatures of well over 30 degrees, a total of 69 cars, from the most powerful machines in the A6 class up to the hot hatchbacks from the A2 class, took the flying start. They will be racing twice around the clock at the 5.390 kilometers long circuit, the first international endurance race of the new year for touring cars, GTs and 24H Specials.
Veach to Compete for 2012 Star Mazda Championship with Andretti Autosport Andretti Autosport announced today it has signed Zach Veach to compete in the 2012 Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear. Veach will drive the #77 Team Zakosi Data Backup car.
Though this will be his first full season in the series, Veach is no stranger to the Star Mazda Championship car. Veach recently drove to victory in the first two rounds of the Formula Car Challenge presented by Goodyear Winter Series, held at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif. in November. He earned two pole positions and led every lap during the race weekend in the No. 77 Team Zakosi Data Backup Star Mazda car. During the 2011 season, Veach also competed during the final two rounds of the Star Mazda Championship. He secured a third place podium finish at the final race of the season at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.Read more & Comment...
Lotus Indy engine turns first lapsUPDATE Related article on IndyCar.com. Shows another photo of the Lotus Black and Gold livery.
Famous Black and Gold John Player Lotus livery
At the Palm Beach International Raceway complex, the Lotus IndyCar engine turned its first laps on Thursday.
With the first design work beginning last year in mid-February by John Judd’s Engine Developments Limited on behalf of Lotus, the 2.2-liter, twin-turbo V6 engine completed almost a dozen laps in the hands of HVM Racing’s Simona de Silvestro.
With members of Lotus and the EDL team looking on, the Lotus-powered Dallara DW12 met all of its objectives during the shakedown.
“I’d say, overall, things have gone very well,” Judd told SPEED.com. “The car fires up, goes round and round, changes gear…it brakes. In terms of all the major boxes we had to tick, we accomplished it today. For our first shakedown day, it has all gone very well, so far.”
Bryan Herta Autosport Names Barracuda Networks as Primary Sponsor Bryan Herta Autosport, last year’s Indianapolis 500-winning team, is proud to announce that it has partnered with Barracuda Networks Inc. as the primary sponsor for Alex Tagliani’s 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series entry.
Herta, Tagliani and the Barracuda Group
Barracuda Networks is an enterprise technology company that works with businesses to simplify their information technology (IT) processes and protect their networks, data and end–users. As the worldwide leader in content security appliances, Barracuda Networks offers products that protect organizations from threats over both email and Web. With a strong security heritage, Barracuda Networks offers networking products that improve application delivery and network access. Finally, Barracuda Networks offers world-class solutions for backup and data protection.Read more & Comment...
Stewart still looking at locking Patrick into Daytona 500 field Worried she may not be fast enough to do it on her own, defending Sprint Cup champion #14-Tony Stewart has not yet decided whether to assign his points from last season to teammate Danica Patrick to assure her entry in the Daytona 500. The top 35 drivers by points from the previous year are guaranteed entry into the first five races of the season. Patrick, who will attempt 10 Cup races in conjunction with her full Nationwide schedule, would otherwise need to earn a spot in the race by qualifying time or in qualifying races.
"I think we're still trying to figure that equation out, but the good thing is looking on the sheet today, the car seems to have good speed," Stewart said. "I've got the utmost confidence that even in the worst case scenario that we've got the right driver that can get this car in the race, no problem. But we're working through that and trying to get that finalized and trying to figure out our options to make sure we give her the best opportunity to get in the Daytona 500 and get her all the experience that we can get her." Sports Illustrated
Petty team gets Smithfield backing Smithfield Foods, Inc. and Richard Petty Motorsports (RPM) announced today that the consumer packaged foods company headquartered in Smithfield, Virginia has entered into a multiyear, integrated partnership with the legendary Richard Petty Motorsports NASCAR team starting in 2012.
As part of its agreement with Richard Petty Motorsports, Smithfield will be utilizing a number of its core brands as well as unique and engaging promotional initiatives throughout this racing season to communicate with existing customers and introduce others to the company’s many fine products. In addition, NASCAR fans will see a variety of Smithfield brands adorning the legendary No. 43 Ford Fusion as primary sponsor in fifteen NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events in 2012, including the first event of the season, February’s Daytona 500. Smithfield brands include Farmland, Eckrich and Curly’s, among others, as well as Helping Hungry Homes™, one of Smithfield’s premier community-outreach brands.
Ferrari teams lock out front row for seventh Dunlop 24H DUBAI
Pole sitting Ferrari
Ferrari teams locked out the front row of the starting grid for the seventh running of the Dunlop 24H DUBAI that gets underway at the Dubai Autodrome tomorrow at 14.00 h local time. In the dying minutes of qualifying on Thursday afternoon, British driver Rob Barff posted a fastest lap time of 2:02.092 minutes, which was enough to put the Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 car of the UAE-based AUH Motorsport/FF Corse team with starting number 12 in pole position for this year’s race. Barff is sharing the car with UAE-based South-Africans Leon Price and Jordan Grogor and Brit Charlie Hollings. Second place on the grid was taken by the number 2-Ferrari of the Italian AF Corse team, driven by Jack Gerber, Matt Griffin, Marco Cioci and Niki Cadei.
Status GP announce Lola LMP2 program Status Grand Prix will this year develop an LMP2 sports car program following its decision to acquire a new 2012 specification Lola B12/80 Coupe. The Silverstone based team will take delivery of the car in the coming weeks and is currently finalizing its 2012 test and race program with the ultimate goal of competing in the full FIA World Endurance Championship in 2013.
This ambitious sports car project will be developed alongside Status GP’s existing GP3 Series activity, the team having been a championship contender and regular race winner in both the 2010 and 2011 seasons. The sports car project will not affect the team’s commitment to its GP3 single-seater program, being operated from expanded premises by a dedicated crew of experienced sports car engineers and technicians.Read more & Comment...
Drivers prohibited from communicating with each other over radio NASCAR has mandated that drivers and spotters will not be allowed to communicate with other drivers over their in-car radios in an ongoing effort to eliminate tandem racing at restrictor plate tracks. The decision was confirmed Thursday as teams prepared for the first of a three-day test at Daytona International Speedway, a tune-up for the Feb. 26 Daytona 500.
Over the past few years, as teams have refined their ability to team up with other cars to create more speed, drivers and spotters have had the ability to talk to multiple teams over their radios. They used it to coordinate which cars would pair up and to help drivers switch from pusher to pushee. By eliminating such communication, NASCAR hopes teams will have a more difficult time making deals and remaining in pairs. The driver pushing especially needs this communication because he has little to no visibility.
It was so refined that one spotter would communicate for both drivers even if one of the drivers wasn't with his organization. This is racing's latest rule change to address the two-car tandem that surveys indicate fans would like to see eliminated. ESPN
Wheldon's wife accepts Borg Warner trophy The late Dan Wheldon was remembered for his stirring, unforgettable victory in the 2011 Indianapolis 500 when his wife, Susie, was presented the BorgWarner Championship Drivers’ Trophy on Jan. 11 in Detroit.
BorgWarner Chairman and CEO Tim Manganello presented the award – known as the “Baby Borg” – to Susie Wheldon during the annual Automotive News World Congress dinner. Bryan Herta Autosport owners Bryan Herta and Steve Newey also received the BorgWarner Championship Owners’ Trophy from Manganello at the event.
“Anyone who knew Dan or heard him speak about the Indy 500 knew how passionate he was about this race,” Susie Wheldon said. “He loved everything about it.
Go Daddy, the world’s largest provider of Web hosting, domain name registrations and net-new SSL Certificates, has signed IndyCar Rookie-of-the-Year, 25 year old James Hinchcliffe as its 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series driver. Last season Hinchcliffe finished ranked 12th out of 48 drivers.
Go Daddy is going to pay Hinchcliffe, or ‘Hinch,’ as he is known, $5 million to sponsor the GoDaddy.com No. 27 Chevrolet for the Andretti Autosport team next season. The payout by Go Daddy is a sign of confidence that the sport can rebound from last season’s tragedy in Las Vegas when Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon was killed in a multi-car accident as he was trying to work his way through a closely-packed field to win a $5 million prize offered to him by IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard.
NASCAR Preseason Thunder Day 1: Kyle Busch leads Toyota 1-2 There was no shortage of conversation – or anything off-limits – during Day 1 of Media Availability during Preseason Thunder Testing Thursday in Daytona.
From spoilers to drafting to beards – all were topics du jour.
A full field of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers tackled Daytona International Speedway for the first of a three-day test as teams make their final preparations for the 54th running of the Daytona 500, February 26.
Boris Said Joins Michael Marsal in Grand-AM Michael Marsal will return for his third consecutive season with Turner Motorsport in a run for the 2012 GRAND-AM Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge championship with the No. 97 BMW M3 GS Class machine.
Marsal, who made his first year of pro competition look like an easy step up when he finished a close second in the 2010 GRAND-AM Driver Championship for Turner, will be joined by veteran Boris Said in the BMW M3 as the duo targets a run at the 2012 championship, which will kick off at Daytona International Speedway on January 27.
In two seasons with Turner Motorsport, Marsal has shown both performance and consistency, netting two victories (VIR and Lime Rock Park, 2010) and eight top-fives while his No. 97 BMW M3 has also completed 97.5% of all race laps. Combined with Said’s impressive record, which has seen him earn 10 wins and 17 podiums in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, the pair are well prepared to take on the highly-competitive 2012 championship.
New Dallara F312 wows Autosport show-goers Dallara’s all-new F312, the chassis which will form the backbone of the 2012 Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series grid, broke cover today (Thursday) at the Autosport International Show in Birmingham.
New Dallara F3 car
Centerpiece of a display of classic Formula 3 machinery on the Historic Sports Car Club stand, the Dallara took its first public bow to great acclaim from the public, teams and competitors, including championship newcomer Alex Lynn, who appreciated his first glimpse of the Mercedes-Benz-powered Fortec Motorsport machine which he will campaign this season.Read more & Comment...
Bourdais and Legge confirmed by Dragon Racing Sebastien Bourdais and Katherine Legge will both make full-time returns to IndyCar racing this year after being announced as the drivers for Dragon Racing.
The Jay Penske-owned team, which ran selected races last year with Paul Tracy and Ho-Pin Tung, will use Lotus engines in this year's IZOD IndyCar Series. It will be the first time the team has run a full-time program with two cars. Dragon joins the HVM, Bryan Herta and Dreyer & Reinbold teams in running Lotus engines.
Claudio Berro, Group Lotus director of motorsport, said: "We are very pleased to be able to announce this new and exciting partnership with Dragon Racing today, a team which has demonstrated its potential and which we believe will achieve great success thanks to the Lotus IndyCar engine and the security of a major backer."
Daytona To Begin Sprint Cup Testing today It was like watching three kids at play, only these kids were tickling the 130-mph mark in Daytona 500 pace cars over Daytona International Speedway's 2.5-mile tri-oval.
Michael Waltrip, Clint Bowyer and Joey Logano -- all NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers from the Toyota camp -- offered the media high-speed laps on the high banks.
It was exhilarating for media members, as the three ran their Toyota pace cars together at close range on a wet track.
Logano, the 21-year-old driver of the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, had a wide smile after exiting his pace car for the day. But when he gets behind the wheel today for Day 1 of Preseason Thunder at DIS, it will be all business.
Formula Two chooses Yokohama tires for new two-second-faster car The FIA Formula Two Championship today (Thursday 12 January) unveiled its new two-seconds-a-lap quicker F2 car at the Autosport International Show in Birmingham, which features tires from leading motorsport manufacturer YOKOHAMA for the first time.
Following extensive testing throughout last year, assisted by current champion Mirko Bortolotti, F2’s engineers have developed a performance upgrade package for the Williams designed car, which centers around a switch from Avon to YOKOHAMA tires and new carbon composite brakes.
Sauber to launch on February 6th The Sauber F1 Team will pull the covers off its new car for the 2012 FIA Formula One World Championship on 6th February in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain.
Drivers Kamui Kobayashi and Sergio Perez will unveil the Sauber C31-Ferrari. Both of them, as well as Team Principal Peter Sauber, CEO Monisha Kaltenborn, Technical Director James Key and reserve driver Esteban Gutiérrez, will be available.
Former Formula 1 driver and Indy car race winner, Mark Blundell (UK) joins the Anglo-American United Autosports team to spearhead the Pro/Am crew in the six-round 2012 Blancpain Endurance Series in his first full-time racing commitment since finishing his Indy car career.
Together with experienced racers, Zak Brown (USA) and Mark Patterson (USA), Blundell will pilot the McLaren MP4-12C GT3 for a full-time attack in the #23 car in the prestigious series.
Blundell has raced with the team on several occasions - taking third at the Total 24 Hours of Spa in 2010 and fourth in last year’s Rolex 24 at Daytona. However 2012 will see the former Brabham-Yamaha (1991), Ligier-Renault (1993), Tyrrell-Yamaha (1994), McLaren-Mercedes (1995) Formula 1 driver contest the entire Blancpain Series.
Jorge Lorenzo on Track in New Delhi Yamaha Factory Racing rider Jorge Lorenzo kicked off 2012 yesterday with a visit to New Delhi. The MotoGP star was in India for a personal appearance at the Auto Expo to meet both racing fans and the national Indian media. Lorenzo also took time in the afternoon to visit the impressive Budh International circuit, a potential newcomer to the MotoGP calendar in the not too distant future. After a lap of the circuit aboard a Yamaha R15 in full Yamaha Factory Racing leathers Lorenzo met with a selected few new R15 owners before holding a short press conference at the track.
Renowned British engineering company Lola today announced the foundation of a national competition aimed at encouraging young women to pursue further education and careers in science, design and engineering. The contest will be officially launched at the end of January and will run throughout Spring 2012.
The competition will be open to all women under the age of 25. Entrants will required to produce an original, revolutionary design for a product that is compatible across Lola’s diverse portfolio of technologies in aerospace, defense, communications, renewables, motorsport and automotive industries. A panel of expert judges will assess every entry and narrow the field down to a shortlist of 10.
The competition will culminate with a celebration of young female engineering talent at a prestigious award’s ceremony where shortlisted candidates and the winner will be announced in front of leading British engineers, Government Ministers and media. The top prize will be awarded to an outstanding young woman who demonstrates ability, imagination and passion for engineering. The winner will receive a check, a trophy and the opportunity to further enhance and test their winning design at Lola’s state of the art facilities in Huntingdon.
Waltrips backmarker Toyota team tried to buy Red Bull's backmarker Toyota team to make an even bigger backmarker team
Michael Waltrip Racing tried to purchase Red Bull Racing to acquire more equipment and secure owner points to guarantee that all three of his Sprint Cup teams have guaranteed spots in the Daytona 500, but was not able complete the deal. That means there's more work to do for Waltrip before the season-opening race. Among his priorities is finding points so that all three MWR automatically qualify for the Daytona 500.
"We tried to buy them," Waltrip said of Red Bull Wednesday at Daytona International Speedway. "We felt it would be a way to make our team stronger. We always look at accomplishing just that."
MWR will look to get points through another partnership. The catch is that no owner can have a stake in more than four teams, so with three teams already, it limits the organization's options. There has been no decision on which car would be left without points if MWR can't get a deal done. All three have major sponsors.
Waltrip, a two-time Daytona 500 winner, also would like to race in the Daytona 500 but with his organization already having three cars, he doesn't know if he can field a fourth car out of his shop or would have to drive for another team. He would have to run for his own team or a single-car team as the four-team cap includes all teams owned by a owner/driver, plus all teams if the driver competes for another organization. Scene Daily
NASCAR's Gordon caught cheating, disqualified Spain's Joan Roma won the 10th stage of the Dakar Rally ahead of Mini teammate Stephane Peterhansel, who finished 21 seconds behind to extend his overall lead in the car category. Peterhansel now leads Roma by just over 19 minutes.
American NASCAR driver and team owner Robby Gordon, who was fourth in the 377km stage in Chile, has been disqualified from the Rally due to technical irregularities in his Hummer.
Gordon has appealed the decision and will be allowed to finish the race.
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