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DATE News (chronologically)
01/23/11
nassprint
Managed Racing: NASCAR still changing 2011 rules  NASCAR's biggest race, the Daytona 500, takes the green flag four weeks from today and yet the rules package for 2011 is still in flux.

Only in NASCAR.

Step back for a moment and visualize the NFL, the nation's premier professional sports league, changing the rules a month before its Super Bowl.

It wouldn't happen. But then again, NASCAR is NASCAR and if it wants to tweak the rules a month before its Super Bowl then dang it, it will. In fact, if it wanted to turn the sport on its head and decree that's how things will be done this season, it could. More ...

01/23/11
fil
Hinchcliffe Wins ‘Canadian Racer of the Year’ Award  Hot on the heels of another encouraging two-day IndyCar test with Newman/Haas Racing, Toronto’s James Hinchcliffe was yesterday named as the ‘Canadian Racer of the Year’ – as voted for by the readers of Inside Track Motorsport News, Canada’s leading monthly motorsport magazine.

The 2010 edition of their ‘Readers’ Choice Awards’ once again highlighted the best of Canadian talent, across all disciplines, but it was 24-year-old open-wheel stand-out, Hinchcliffe, who triumphed in the overall category to be crowned ‘Canadian Racer of the Year’ following a stellar season in the Firestone Indy Lights Series.

Many of the award winners were in Toronto on Saturday night to collected their awards at the annual Canadian Motorsports Expo but unfortunately James wasn’t able to be present having just completed his second two-day IndyCar test session with Newman/Haas Racing. More ...
01/23/11
f1
Designer appointed for new HRT 'image'  (GMM) HRT will have a new look in 2011 after inking a deal with Hollywood illustrator Daniel Simon.

The vehicle concept designer and German has been appointed to "create a dynamic new corporate image" for the Spanish team's second season in F1.

He has worked with Bugatti and Honda as a concept designer and in Hollywood working on the TRON: Legacy film.

"It's going to be an exciting journey as Hispania Racing evolves and grows and I'm looking forward to the challenge of creating a strong visual statement for the team," said Simon.

01/23/11
nassprint
NASCAR wants lane stripes at Daytona  NASCAR will ask Daytona International Speedway to add broken, white lane stripes between Turns 1 and 2 and Turns 3 and 4 before returning in February.

"It will be nice to have judgment marks and reference points through there will help for sure," driver Joey Logano said after an intense two-car draft session with Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch. Both drive Toyotas.

Sprint Cup director John Darby said before NASCAR returns for Speed Weeks, the track will add lane markers in all the 31-degree banked areas. More ...

01/23/11
track news
New Daytona surface good, not flawless  During a Thursday press conference, Tony Stewart turned some heads when he mentioned a small bump between Turns 3 and 4 at Daytona International Speedway. With everyone led to believe the newly paved track was "flawless," talk of a bump was an attention getter.

Bill Braniff, lead engineer for the repaving project, was at DIS on Saturday and explained that the paver -- the 40-ton Titan 525 -- slipped a couple of times in the east banking.

The resulting blemish was smoothed by hand (and shovel), and while it appeared level upon completion, there was a very small bump that can be felt if driving near the middle of the racing groove.

There's another small blip closer to Turn 3, said Braniff, who said both bumps fit well within the engineering tolerance level. And compared to the wrinkles and dips in the old layout, it's now like 2.5 miles of billiard slate.

01/23/11
irl
Video: State of IndyCar and Centennial Tour Highlights  See our home page for the latest IndyCar videos from the State of IndyCar presentation to the 10-day Centennial Troop Tour, which included Indianapolis 500 winners Mario Andretti, Johnny Rutherford and Al Unser Jr. plus Indy 500 veterans Sarah Fisher, Davey Hamilton, Larry Foyt and Firestone Indy Lights race winner Martin Plowman.
01/23/11
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Wallace gains valuable experience in Daytona testing  
Steve Wallace at Daytona
NASCAR preseason testing at Daytona International Speedway concluded this afternoon and for Steve Wallace (No. 77 5-Hour Energy Toyota), the three-day test session provided valuable experience in advance of his Sprint Cup Series debut in next month's Daytona 500.

Said Wallace, "We definitely still have a lot of speed left to find, but one of the biggest things that came out of the test was the experience that I gained drafting in a Cup car.  It's definitely a lot different than drafting in the old Nationwide Series car.

"We spent a lot of time drafting with guys like Tony Stewart, AJ Allmendinger and Brian Vickers; I want to thank all of those guys for their help.  I really learned a lot about how to push guys and how to get pushed in a two-car draft like they've had with the Cup cars lately.  There's definitely a technique to it that most people don't realize. More ...

01/23/11
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Chevrolet working hard on its car of the future  The 2011 Daytona 500 is less than five weeks away, but 2013 is very much on the minds of designers and managers at Chevrolet. Work already is under way on a complete bodywork and chassis redesign that should be ready two years from now.

For Chevrolet, that means more closely aligning what fans will see on the track to what they manufacture for the street.

"I think what we all learned with the 2011 Nationwide car is that you can balance looks and performance," said Mark Kent, director of racing for General Motors. "The cars are distinctively different. So each of us was able to get more manufacturer identity. And I think what we saw on the track showed that it could be done. More ...

01/22/11
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NASCAR defers fuel injection to 2012 season  NASCAR's competition update held Friday at Daytona International Speedway as part of Preseason Thunder testing touched on a lot of topics but produced only one hard news item -- no fuel injection in a 2011 Sprint Cup points race.

In several news briefings since late last season, NASCAR officials had talked about moving toward a possible mid-season 2011 introduction of the system, which would replace the carburetors that have been used in Cup racing since its 1949 inception, despite having virtually no application in modern production vehicles. More ...

01/22/11
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Penske Dodges top Daytona testing  Drivers cracked 198 mph in two-car drafts Saturday in the final day of a three-day test session at Daytona International Speedway, but NASCAR doesn't plan to change the size of the restrictor plate when Sprint Cup Series teams return in February for Speedweeks. NASCAR officials seemed content with the speeds, similar to those posted a month ago during a Goodyear tire test on the newly paved 2.5-mile trioval. Teams used a restrictor plate with holes 29/32nds of an inch in diameter  1/32nd of an inch smaller than what was used in the December test. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Director John Darby said he expects speeds in February to be higher than during the test. More ...
01/22/11
nassprint
NASCAR Day 3 test results from Daytona  
Pos No Name Make Best Time Best Speed Session
1 2 Brad Keselowski Dge 45.316 198.605 Day 3 PM
2 22 Kurt Busch Dge 45.322 198.579 Day 3 PM
3 18 Kyle Busch Tyt 45.515 197.737 Day 3 PM
4 11 Denny Hamlin Tyt 45.515 197.737 Day 3 PM
5 20 Joey Logano Tyt 45.517 197.728 Day 3 PM
6 83 Brian Vickers Tyt 45.533 197.659 Day 3 PM
7 4 Kasey Kahne TYt 45.533 197.659 Day 3 PM
8 43 AJ Allmendinger Frd 45.549 197.589 Day 3 PM
9 24 Jeff Gordon Chv 45.550 197.585 Day 3 PM
1 20 Joey Logano Tyt 45.566 197.516 Day 3 AM
2 11 Denny Hamlin Tyt 45.567 197.511 Day 3 AM
3 14 Tony Stewart Chv 45.582 197.446 Day 3 AM
44 39 Ryan Newman Chv 45.583 197 442 Day 3 AM
10 99 Carl Edwards Frd 45.592 197.403 Day 3 PM
5 43 AJ Allmendinger Frd 45.828 196.386 Day 3 AM
6 77 Steve Wallace Tyt 46.089 195.274 Day 3 AM
11 77 Steve Wallace Tyt 46.239 194.641 Day 3 PM
16 16 Greg Biffle Frd 48.627 185.082 Day 3 PM
7 1 Jamie McMurray Chv 48.688 184.850 Day 3 AM
8 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Chv 48.694 184.828 Day 3 AM
13 29 Kevin Harvick Chv 48.791 184.460 Day 3 PM 
9 24 Jeff Gordon Chv 48.802 184.419 Day 3 AM
10 5 Mark Martin Chv 48.876 184.139 Day 3 AM
14 09 Bill Elliott Chv 48.889 184.090 Day 3 PM
15 5 Mark Martin Chv 48.927 183.948 Day 3 PM
16 88 Josh Wise Chv 48.943 183.887 Day 3 PM
17 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Chv 49.009 183.640 Day 3 PM
11 27 Paul Menard Chv 49.019 183.602 Day 3 AM
18 21 Trevor Bayne Frd 49.020 183.599 Day 3 PM 
19 1 Jamie McMurray Chv 49.022 183.591 Day 3 PM
20 27 Paul Menard Chv 49.038 183.531 Day 3 PM
12 16 Greg Biffle Frd 49.054 183.471 Day 3 AM
21 6 Todd Bodine Tyt 49.123 183.214 Day 3 PM
22 09 Marcos Ambrose Frd 49.135 183.169 Day 3 PM
23 6 David Ragan Frd 49.157 183.087 Day 3 PM
13 2 Brad Keselowski Dge 49.162 183.068 Day 3 AM
14 22 Kurt Busch Dge 49.196 182.942 Day 3 AM
24 13 Casey Mears Tyt 49.215 182.871 Day 3 PM
15 29 Kevin Harvick Chv 49.240 182.778 Day 3 AM
16 09 Bill Elliott Chv 49.267 182.678 Day 3 AM
25 36 Dave Blaney Chv 49.272 182.660 Day 3 PM
17 21 Trevor Bayne Frd 49.301 182.552 Day 3 AM
18 9 Marcos Ambrose Frd 49.308 182.526 Day 3 AM
19 18 Kyle Busch Tyt 49.314 182.504 Day 3 AM
20 88 Josh Wise Chv 49.342 182.400 Day 3 AM
26 17 Matt Kenseth Frd 49.379 182.264 Day 3 PM
21 99 Carl Edwards Frd 49.382 182.253 Day 3 AM
22 83 Brian Vickers Tyt 49.396 182.201 Day 3 AM
23 6 David Ragan Frd 49.437 182.050 Day 3 AM
24 36 Dave Blaney Chv 49.474 181.914 Day 3 AM
25 17 Matt Kenseth Frd 49.483 181.881 Day 3 AM
26 4 Kasey Kahne Tyt 49.506 181.796 Day 3 AM
27 60 Todd Bodine Tyt 49.515 181.763 Day 3 AM
28 13 Casey Mears Tyt 49.801 180.719 Day 3 AM
27 66 Michael McDowell Tyt 50.310 178.891 Day 3 PM
29 66 Michael McDowell Tyt 50.958 176.616 Day 3 AM
01/22/11
nassprint
Phoenix moves Sprint Cup qualifying to Saturday  Four days of NASCAR action will return to Phoenix International Raceway next month, Feb. 24-27, headlined by the Subway Fresh Fit 500 Sprint Cup Series race on Feb. 27. The event schedule, which occurs one week after the Daytona 500, showcases a different NASCAR series race each day: Sprint Cup Series, Nationwide Series, Camping World Truck Series and the K&N Pro Series West. PIR also announced that NASCAR Sprint Cup qualifying will move from its previous spot on Friday to 1:40 pm on Saturday, Feb. 26 - prior to the Bashas' Supermarkets 200 NASCAR Nationwide Race at 3:30 pm. The move will allow more fans to enjoy Sprint Cup time trials. The Subway Fresh Fit 500 is scheduled to start at 1:00 pm/local time [3pm/et] on Sunday, Feb. 27. Spectator gates open at 8:00 am for Sunday's Subway Fresh Fit 500. More info and tickets to the Feb. 24-27 Subway Fresh Fit 500 NASCAR event weekend are available with prices starting at just $25. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.phoenixraceway.com/tickets or call 866-408-RACE (7223).
01/22/11
irl
National Guard Panther Team Tests One Day  Panther Racing completed a successful test at Sebring International Raceway with IZOD IndyCar Series rookie JR Hildebrand on Thursday before a rain storm Friday morning forced the team to cut the test short by a day. The team completed a total of 75 laps on Sebring's 1.65-mile course in the No. 4 National Guard car, and will utilize its test mileage allotted for Friday during another test session scheduled in February.

This was Hildebrand's first test as a member of Panther Racing, after an impressive audition at Phoenix International Raceway in December helped earn the 23-year-old Californian the seat in the National Guard entry. The 2009 Firestone Indy Lights champion made his IndyCar Series debut with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing last season when he made two starts filling in for an injured Mike Conway. He had tested at Sebring on two previous occasions; with Andretti Autosport in 2009 -- his first time driving an IndyCar Series machine -- and again in 2010 with Dale Coyne Racing. More ...

01/22/11
nassprint
NASCAR's rule loophole panned  Last year Sam Hornish Jr., driving the No. 77 for Roger Penske, finished 30th in owner’s points. NASCAR locks the top 35 in points into the first five races of the next season and then the top 35 from the current year after that. The intention of the rule was a way to franchise the teams. To give the teams some value.

Unlike all the other major league sports, if you want to play the New York Yankees you are forced to buy an existing MLB team. I can’t just get 20 players together and show up at Yankee Stadium and challenge them to a game. I can form a race team and build or buy a Cup-legal race car and try to qualify for the Daytona 500.

I’m not a big fan of the top 35 provisional rule, but I understand it. Allowing Rusty Wallace, or anyone else, to “acquire” points from a team that doesn’t plan on competing in 2011 is just wrong and shouldn’t be allowed. More ...

01/22/11
irl
alms
Baltimore race organizers give up on finding title sponsor  UPDATE A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, Why would the organizers give up on landing a million dollar plus title sponsor for the race? Joe Carlucci

Dear Joe, Because the race will be broadcast on Versus, the albatross around IndyCar's neck, where not enough viewers will be tuned in to make it worth that much money to a title sponsor.  Mark C.

01/22/11 Organizers of the Baltimore Grand Prix say that they are no longer focused on landing a title sponsor for the three-day racing festival and would be content with a number of smaller backers.

"We have a bucket we need to fill, and it doesn't matter how we fill that bucket," Jay Davidson, president of Baltimore Racing Development, said Friday.

Race organizers had said last summer that they were looking for a title sponsor to pledge $1 million to $2 million. Davidson said the group has declined "low-ball offers" but remains in talks with businesses about the possibility of a title sponsorship. More ...

01/22/11
nnw
Hornish Situation A Serious Head-Scratcher.  Not really  UPDATE #2 A reader asks, Dear AR1.com, How could Sam Hornish Jr. go from being such a successful IndyCar driver to a complete backmarker in NASCAR?  Karen Lamb

Dear Karen, That's simple.  His success in IndyCar came on 100% throttle no talent required oval tracks where the high downforce IndyCar was firmly planted under him.  On road courses he was a backmarker.  NASCAR's Car of Tomorrow requires that you drive it with the tail out to be fast on the ovals.  The best drivers, like Johnson can do it well, but others like Hornish and Dale Earnhardt Jr. struggle and fail.  Mark C.

01/22/11 Sam Hornish Jr. said it’s “just business,” that his eight-year career with Penske Racing – in which he won an IndyCar title and the 2006 Indianapolis 500 – has been reduced to 10 Nationwide Series races as he looks for a full-time Sprint Cup ride.

Hornish Jr., who had eight top-10 finishes in 108 Cup races, lost his primary sponsor when Mobil1 discontinued its relationship with Penske and was replaced by Shell-Pennzoil in a deal that funded Kurt Busch’s Cup car and provided associate sponsorships to all three of Penske’s Indy cars.

“It’s a perfect storm of imperfect events for me,” Hornish Jr. said on Friday. “No one is expanding and everyone is trying to hold on for what they can right now. More ...

01/22/11
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ABC Announces IndyCar broadcast team for 2011  The team working ABC's five IndyCar races in 2011 will remain largely intact, with a few tweaks, according to ESPN PR.

The main lineup will be Marty Reid and Scott Goodyear in the booth with Rick DeBruhl, Jamie Little and Vince Welch in the pits.

Vince Welch will move into the lap-by-lap announcer role for the race at New Hampshire as Marty Reid will be calling the ESPN telecast of the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Watkins Glen that day. Gary Gerould, a pit reporter on ESPN's NHRA coverage and a veteran of many IndyCar/CART telecasts, will sub for Vince in the pits for that race. More ...

01/22/11
irl
IndyCar, other circuits show signs of a financial recovery for motorsports  In the last year, the IndyCar Series has signed 14 new sponsors as the league starts to improve its financial fortunes under CEO Randy Bernard, who took office last March.

The IndyCar Series is not alone in its successes. There have been a string of major racing sponsorship announcements that have some motorsports insiders wondering if the sport is making a comeback after four years of dwindling sponsorships and financial hardship.

Chip Ganassi, who owns IndyCar and NASCAR teams, thinks growth in the open-wheel series is driving growth in the sport.

“All of us in the industry feel the momentum of what’s going on in IndyCar racing,” Ganassi said. “We’ve got American drivers and new sponsors coming into the sport. That’s a breath of fresh air for us.” More ...
01/21/11
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MRN Returns As GRAND-AM Radio Broadcast Partner  The Motor Racing Network (MRN) is returning as GRAND-AM's radio broadcast partner for the 2011 season, starting with a multi-faceted coverage package for next weekend's season-opening event, the Rolex 24 At Daytona.

Veteran broadcaster Eli Gold leads MRN's coverage team for the second-straight season. Gold is the longtime host of NASCAR Live on MRN in addition to being the "Voice of the Crimson Tide" for University of Alabama football radio broadcasts since 1988. Gold will be joined in the booth by Preston Root. More ...

01/21/11
irl
$6.5M bond proposed for Dallara building  The town of Speedway's Economic Development Commission is meeting today to consider a request for a $6.5 million bond to pay for the new Dallara building.

The bond issue would be guaranteed by the Speedway Redevelopment Commission and will be paid for from future tax revenues from the Dallara project, said Scott Harris, SRC executive director.

The Redevelopment Commission is expected to meet Monday at 5:30 p.m. for a public hearing regarding an amendment to the redevelopment plan for the Dallara building, Harris said. The Town Council will also meet at 7 p.m. that night, when it will consider the issuance of the Economic Development Commission bond. More ...

01/21/11
irl
$6.5M bond proposed for Dallara building  The town of Speedway's Economic Development Commission is meeting today to consider a request for a $6.5 million bond to pay for the new Dallara building.

The bond issue would be guaranteed by the Speedway Redevelopment Commission and will be paid for from future tax revenues from the Dallara project, said Scott Harris, SRC executive director.

The Redevelopment Commission is expected to meet Monday at 5:30 p.m. for a public hearing regarding an amendment to the redevelopment plan for the Dallara building, Harris said. The Town Council will also meet at 7 p.m. that night, when it will consider the issuance of the Economic Development Commission bond. More ...

01/21/11
nassprint
Daytona Testing Times - Day 2  Testing at Daytona International Speedway on Friday, January 21st, Day 2, Session 3, the final speeds of the session. The morning session was canceled due to rain/drizzle/fog:

1) #11-Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 45.716 196.868
2) #14-Tony Stewart, Chevy, 45.719 196.855
3) #20-Joey Logano, Toyota, 45.757 196.691
4) #2-Brad Keselowski, Dodge, 45.873 196.194
5) #31-Jeff Burton, Chevy, 45.954 195.848
6) #83-Brian Vickers, Toyota, 45.955 195.844
7) #88-Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevy, 46.037 195.495
8) #48-Jimmie Johnson, Chevy, 46.037 195.495
9) #18-Kyle Busch, Toyota, 46.054 195.423
10) #4-Kasey Kahne, Toyota, 46.170 194.932 More ...
01/21/11
irl
NHR Completes Second Test at Sebring with Hinchcliffe  Newman/Haas Racing (NHR) completed a two-day test at the 1.65-mile Sebring International Raceway road course today with Canadian rookie James Hinchcliffe.  Rain prevented the team from running until approx. 2 p.m. ET today but they were able to complete the remaining number of miles they allocated for the test once the track dried.   

“We woke up this morning to a bunch of rain,” said Hinchcliffe, 24, who added 33 laps to the 97 he completed yesterday. “I wanted to take the car out and get it wet for the first time but the powers that be decided it was better to wait for dry conditions to use up the rest of our test miles.  We ran the majority of our allotted test miles yesterday because we knew the weather was going to be better than today.  That meant we had to sit around and wait a lot today to make sure the track was at its best before we went out so as to not waste the miles.  Sitting at a race track and not driving is a lot like sitting in a movie theater and them not turning on the movie; it was a little tough to sit and wait.” 

“Yesterday we did a lot of development work and today was more about race setup and long runs,” added Hinchcliffe, who ran a best lap time of 54.65 today.  “I got my first chance to do my first full-fuel run in an Indy car.  It was another day dedicated to continuing my learning process and another great test with Newman/Haas Racing which makes me that much more anxious and eager to get a deal done.”

01/21/11
nassprint
Some highlights from Friday's NASCAR Press Conference  NASCAR president Mike Helton and vice president of competition Robin Pemberton held a press conference at Daytona International Speedway on Friday. Some notes and highlights:

NASCAR president Mike Helton confirmed Friday that drivers will be allowed to race for only one championship this season. The rule is designed to prevent Sprint Cup drivers from dominating the second-tier Nationwide Series. Full-time Cup drivers have won the last five Nationwide titles. Helton also said NASCAR is leaning toward a simpler points system for all three of its national series. Helton says bonus points would be added to put an emphasis on winning races. ESPN

Helton also indicated that a new points system is coming to the top three series. It likely will be one in which points are awarded one per position from with the winner getting 43 points and the last place driver just one. There likely will be bonus points offered to encourage drivers to race for wins and to keep championships from being decided by consistency alone. And there are expected to be provisions that allow drivers who don't finish the regular season in the elite group but have won races to have a shot at being added to the Chase field. He said the goal is to make the points system easier to understand for casual fans as well as those more familiar with the sport. More ...
01/21/11
f1
F1 TV audience increased in 201  Formula 1's television audience figures increased in the 2010 season to 527 million individuals over the course of the season.

A total of over 16,000 hours of coverage were telecast to 187 countries during the year.

"Whilst 2010 has delivered some great things, with high-def 2011 promises even more as Formula 1 seeks to build upon the foundations laid in our emerging markets and enthrall our audiences across the world," said Bernie Ecclestone.

01/21/11
alms
Corvette announces 2011 driver lineup  Corvette Racing will have two new drivers in its lineup for the 2011 American Le Mans Series and the 24 Hours of Le Mans (pending official invitation). Tommy Milner will join Olivier Beretta in the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R for the full season, with Antonio Garcia continuing as third driver in the Sebring, Le Mans, and Petit Le Mans endurance races. Richard Westbrook will be teamed with Jan Magnussen and Oliver Gavin in the No. 4 Compuware Corvette C6.R in the three long-distance events.

"At the conclusion of every season, we review and evaluate all aspects of the Corvette Racing program," said GM Racing director Mark Kent. "The level of competition in the GT class is extremely high, and our goal is to make the team as competitive as possible. We are pleased to welcome Tommy Milner and Richard Westbrook to Corvette Racing, and we believe that they will help us to reach our objective." More ...

01/21/11
irl
karting
Tagliani Competing in FWT Karting This Weekend  In the weeks leading up to the start of the IZOD IndyCar series 2011 season, the FAZZT Race Team's Alex Tagliani will be participating in the Rotax Max Series as part of the Florida Karting Winter Tour along with some of the top karting racers in North America.

Starting with this weekend's event in Orlando, Fl. (Jan 21-23), Tagliani will take the wheel of the Bowers & Wilkins TorcUp BIREL kart with a Rotax engine to compete in the DD2 Masters class with the SRA Karting International team. Tagliani will also compete in the February 25-27 tour stop at Palm Beach International Raceway.

The Formula Kart Productions Florida Winter Tour is one of the longest running, largest and most geographically diverse kart racing series in the Americas. The 2010 edition of the tour featured 482 unique competitors representing 23 countries, 25 American states, and five Canadian provinces. More ...

01/21/11
AUTOMOTIVE
EPA to approve use of E15 in 2001-06 model vehicles  The EPA has decided to approve the use of the fuel for 2001 to 2006 model years, a person briefed on the matter said late Thursday.

The decision is a victory for the ethanol industry and corn farmers, who have been pushing to increase the percentage of ethanol. The decision may help convince retailers to carry the fuel when the EPA finalizes new labels.

In October, the EPA approved the use of E15, a blend of 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline, for use in vehicles built in the 2007 model year and newer. Most gasoline has 10 percent ethanol, known as E10. More ...

01/21/11
automotive
GM Daewoo to change name, sell under Chevy brand  GM Daewoo Auto & Technology Co., the South Korean unit of General Motors Co., said today it is changing its name to GM Korea and will sell most of its cars under the Chevrolet brand.

GM Daewoo said in a statement that all of its new vehicle introductions and changes to existing vehicles this year will be under the Chevrolet nameplate.

The company name change to GM Korea Co. is expected to be completed by March 31. GM Daewoo's board of directors approved the decision today. More ...

01/21/11
nassprint
Kvapil and Gilliland Return to Front Row in '11  Travis Kvapil and David Gilliland will be back behind the wheels of their Front Row Motorsports Fords for the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season.  The Statesville, N.C.-based team announced Friday that the veteran drivers will return for the organization's third full-time season in the Sprint Cup Series, with Kvapil racing the No. 34 Long John Silver's Ford and David Gilliland in the No. 38 Taco Bell Ford.  The team plans to enter its third car, the No. 37 Ford, in select races during the 2011 season.

"I'm thrilled to have Travis and David back," said Bob Jenkins, owner of Front Row Motorsports.  "We're going into our third season running full-time in Sprint Cup racing and we're really starting to build something here with these guys.  Our drivers are back, (Taco Bell team crew chief) Peter Sospenzo is back, (general manager) Jerry Freeze is into his third season running the team for us.  So, I'm really excited to keep building with this core group." More ...

01/21/11
f2
Alex Brundle rejoins F2 for 2011  
Alex Brundle
Alex Brundle will rejoin the FIA Formula Two Championship in 2011, after taking a break from the series in 2010 to compete in British Formula 3.

The 20-year-old Briton contested F2’s maiden season in 2009 and impressed on several occasions, notably finishing fifth in the second race at Spa-Francorchamps, having run as high as third after qualifying on the second row.

Brundle, son of ex-F1 racer and BBC F1 commentator Martin, also scored points in the opening race of the year at Valencia, while he was unlucky to miss out on a maiden F2 podium at Imola after falling victim to a patch of oil leaked from the back of Mirko Bortolotti’s car. More ...

01/21/11
f1
f2
Williams tester Stoneman diagnosed with cancer  
Dean Stoneman
(GMM)  New F2 champion Dean Stoneman has pulled out of racing for 2011.  The 20-year-old Briton, who tested with the F1 team Williams in Abu Dhabi last November, has been diagnosed with testicular cancer.

He had intended to progress to the Renault World Series this year but instead will "concentrate his complete attention on returning to full health", a statement on his website said.

"Specialists have made the diagnosis early and are confident that he will make a full recovery, with treatment scheduled to begin with immediate effect," added the statement.

Cycling legend Lance Armstrong is a famous survivor of testicular cancer.

01/21/11
f1
Rome mayor calls off F1 race bid  (GMM)  Rome mayor Gianni Alemanno on Friday called off the Italian capital's bid for a formula one race. This week, the mayor said Rome was "taking a step back" with its plans for a street race in the EUR district, after Bernie Ecclestone said there was not room on the F1 calendar.

"Now I can formally and definitively renounce the project of the grand prix of Rome," said Alemanno in a press conference, according to Italian press sources.

He said surveys had shown that the idea of a F1 race Rome was unpopular, adding that the historic city should instead focus on securing the 2020 Olympics.

01/21/11
f1
Drug baron Charles Zwolsman found dead in cell  
Charles Zwolsman Sr.
Dutch drug Baron Charles Zwolsman has died.  He was the father of ChampCar driver Charles Zwolsman Jr.  Zwolsman who would have turned 55 on Friday, deceased in prison. This is a reliable source at the ANP reported. Zwolsman's been a long time on suspicion of large-scale drug trafficking.

The cause of death has not yet been announced.

On May 11, 2010 Zwolsman was sentenced to a prison term of three years for possession of 2,000 kilos of hashish and four firearms. The drug dealer was one of the most famous names in the Dutch drug scene. Since late 1980 he came into contact with the law several times and he was also regularly sentenced to long prison sentences.

01/21/11
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Friday  UPDATE Updates shown in red below.

01/21/11
  • Grosjean to be Renault 'third driver' in 2011 - TF1
  • Red Bull confirms February 1st launch for RB7
  • Manager not sure Liuzzi will race in 2011
  • Lauda's famous cap to be blue in 2011
  • Rosberg to drive new Mercedes on first test day
  • Berger 'can't afford' F1 team owner return
  • Ricciardo vows to work for F1 debut in 2012
  • Williams moves towards public floatation New
  • Virgin to launch 2011 car after first test New  More ...
01/21/11
nassprint
Pressure is on Dale Jr. to perform  
(LOOKING AHEAD TO THIS YEAR): "I'm really sick of how we ran over the last several years and ready to see something different, ready to get to the track and see different results. We'll just have to see how it goes.

(WHAT DO YOU NEED TO EXCEL): "I don't know exactly what the perfect match is (with a crew chief). I'm game for trying anything out and moving around and shaking it up a little bit and changing the scope of the team however they want to change it. I'm pretty much up for any of that.'' More ...

01/21/11
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NASCAR president Mike Helton will answer questions Friday  NASCAR president Mike Helton will answer questions Friday about the new racing season and the nature of some of the changes the sanctioning body is considering. Helton and vice president of competition Robin Pemberton are scheduled to attend a noon press conference at Daytona International Speedway as part of NASCAR's three-day preseason testing. No dramatic revelations are expected, but Helton probably will expand on changes officials are considering and some that are definitely in place. For the first time, drivers in NASCAR's three major series have been required to choose the series in which they will pursue the championship, meaning full-time Sprint Cup drivers won't be in the running for the Nationwide Series title. Another change involves pit road, where there will be six over-the-wall crewmen instead of seven. The catch-can position has been eliminated with the arrival of new self-venting fuel cans. Helton is expected to address those topics Friday in addition to questions about possible changes in the Sprint Cup point system and possible modifications to the Chase for the Sprint Cup format, although key information about Chase changes is not expected to be released until next week. SPEED
01/21/11
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Stewart talks about incident in Australia  
Tony Stewart - his temper gets him arrested Down under
Tony Stewart, met with members of the media at Daytona International Speedway during Preseason Thunder at Daytona and discussed a recent reported altercation at a dirt track in Australia. The transcript in part:

Q.) Australian newspapers reported that at the end of your trip down there that there was sort some of altercation or something. Can you give us some facts or shed some light on what happened?
A - Stewart) There was an altercation at the racetrack. It was a dispute between myself and one of the owners of the facility. But as it also reported, we went down to the police station, we gave them a statement. They told us after the statement that we were free to go back to the hotel room and free to get on the plane the next day. But definitely wasn't the way I wanted to end my trip. We had a fun trip over there. Obviously there was a lot of flooding and raining while we were there, but at the same time we still...we had a good race trip over there and didn't end that last night the way we wanted to by any means. But it's not uncommon to see drivers and track owners have disputes over what's going on, but this one went a little bit further than a normal dispute. More ...
01/21/11
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Sprint Cup Race Start Times Still In Limbo  Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway with Dave Moody has learned that standardized start times for NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races could become a thing of the past this season. A year ago, all Sunday afternoon Sprint Cup events took the green flag just after 1:00 pm/et. Not all tracks were happy with the change, however, and the move was blamed by some for a drop in television ratings. Sources tell Sirius Speedway that starting times for the 2011 season have yet to be finalized, as NASCAR decides whether to put the decision back into the hands of individual tracks. It is expected that next month's season-opening Daytona 500 will once again take the green flag just after 1:00pm/et. Sirius Speedway
01/21/11
alms
Highcroft 2011 plans still up in air  
New 2.8-liter HPD turbo V6.  One has to wonder what similarities it will have to Honda's 2.4 liter (now 2.2 liter) turbo V6 for IndyCars
Despite being the official test team for the new 2.8 liter turbo V6 ALMS LMP1 powerplant for Honda Performance Development, the Patron Highcroft team still does not know what is happening for 2011.

Speaking to Autosport, team owner Duncan Dayton said, "We are very excited about the new LMP1 car that HPD have the team at Wirth Research working on," Dayton said. "We're still waiting on final word regarding the program, but it is certainly our desire to defend our championship crown with an LMP1 entry with David Brabham, Simon Pagenaud and Marino Franchitti as part of our driving squad.

"We are also very keen to return to Le Mans. We earned automatic entries with our championship win and class victory at Petit Le Mans and I know HPD would be very eager to take the new ARX-01e to France.

"The ACO are working hard on improving the balance between the diesel-powered machines and gasoline cars like the HPD – that makes the Le Mans opportunity even more appealing."

01/21/11
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Tommy Baldwin Racing, Blaney to compete in 16 Cup races  Tommy Baldwin Racing and driver Dave Blaney will compete in no less than 16 races with its No. 36 Chevrolet during the 2011 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the team said. Owner Tommy Baldwin explained that the team will continue to look for sponsorship but will contest 16 events with or without it.

NASCAR veteran and returning team driver Dave Blaney gets behind the wheel, beginning with the Daytona 500 next month.

“I am very excited to get back into the No. 36 Chevrolet,” Blaney said. “TBR ended the year with great promise and rebuilt their fleet of cars in the off-season. With that and our previous experience together, I think we will hit the ground running.”

01/21/11
irl
Winning bidder will drive 2011 Indy 500 Pace Car on parade lap  A thrill of a lifetime awaits the winning bidder of the Barrett-Jackson auction Saturday, Jan. 22 for the special-edition Chevrolet Camaro Convertible that will serve as the Official Pace Car for the 2011 Indianapolis 500.

The top bidder will have the opportunity to drive the car during a parade lap in front of the field of 33 starters shortly before the green flag flies at "The Most Important Race In History" on Sunday, May 29 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

SPEED will televise the Camaro auction between 9-11 p.m. (ET) Jan. 22 during its 11 consecutive hours of live coverage from 2 p.m.-1 a.m., with Indianapolis 500 winners and speed milestone holders Arie Luyendyk and Tom Sneva scheduled to drive the Camaro Convertible Pace Car onto the auction stage in Scottsdale, Ariz. Luyendyk and officials from IMS and Chevrolet unveiled the car Thursday, Jan. 20 at the Barrett-Jackson auction in Scottsdale. More ...

01/20/11
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Daytona Testing - Day 1  Testing at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday, January 20th, Day 1, Session 2, the final speeds of the session, the top four speeds were drafting, the rest were single car runs:

Afternoon
1) #00-David Reutimann, Toyota, 45.970 195.780
2) #56-Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 45.971 195.776
3) #83-Brian Vickers, Toyota, 46.312 194.334
4) #4-Kasey Kahne, Toyota, 46.312 194.334
5) #14-Tony Stewart, Chevy, 48.165 186.858
6) #24-Jeff Gordon, Chevy, 48.744 184.638
7) #33-Clint Bowyer, Chevy, 48.923 183.963
8) #1-Jamie McMurray, Chevy, 48.937 183.910
9) #18-Kyle Busch, Toyota, 49.031 183.557
10) #99-Carl Edwards, Ford, 49.043 183.512 More ...
01/20/11
irl
Chevrolet Camaro SS Convertible to Pace Indianapolis 500  
A special-edition Chevrolet Camaro Convertible will serve as the official pace car of the 2011 Indianapolis 500. Chevrolet and Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials made the announcement at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale classic auto auction, where a bidder will have the opportunity to purchase the first of 50 Indianapolis 500 Festival Committee cars.

The 2011 Camaro Convertible is the 22nd Chevrolet chosen to pace “The Greatest Spectacle In Racing®” and the seventh Camaro. Adding to the rich heritage is the fact that 2011 will mark the 100th anniversary of the first Indianapolis 500, as well as the centennial year of Chevrolet.

Chevrolet will donate full proceeds of the auction to the David Foster Foundation, a charity devoted to supporting families with children in need of life-saving organ transplants. David Foster, the 15-time Grammy-winning music producer and songwriter, founded the organization in his native Canada. More ...

01/20/11
f1
Ferrari backs one GP per nation limit  Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo says a push to ensure that nations do not have more than one grand prix each per season is right for Formula 1 – even if it ends Rome's dreams of holding an F1 race on its streets.

The famous Italian city has been angling for an F1 date in recent years and promising a spectacular and picturesque street course, but it had hoped to be a second Italian event rather than a replacement for the much-loved and historic Monza track.

Last week Italian newspapers reported that Bernie Ecclestone had written to Rome's mayor saying that the only way the city would get an F1 race was if Monza dropped off the calendar or an arrangement was made for the two venues to hold the Italian GP in alternate years – a move that was seen to have killed off the Rome project. More ...

01/20/11
f1
Williams Hybrid Power Continues Winning Streak  Williams Hybrid Power (WHP) received further industry recognition last week when it won the Technology and Innovation Award at the Motorsport Industry Association’s (MIA) Business Excellence Awards at the NEC in Birmingham.

The annual awards dinner was held alongside the MIA’s European Cleaner Racing Conference, one of the most prestigious gatherings of the year for all involved in the British motorsport industry. The conference brings together high-performance engineering and opinion-leaders from across the sport to showcase green motorsport and, in particular, advances in alternative energy sources and sustainable materials. More ...

01/20/11
automotive
McLaren Announces US Base MSRP for the McLaren MP4-12C  McLaren Automotive today announced the US manufacturer suggested retail pricing (MSRP) for the McLaren MP4-12C starting at $229,000*.  With an anticipated on-sale date of late summer 2011, the 12C will arrive on the North American sports car scene as the only carbon-fiber based vehicle in its market-price segment. The 12C will launch as a 2012 model year vehicle.

“The 12C pricing announcement today is another milestone achieved for McLaren,” explained Antony Sheriff, Managing Director, McLaren Automotive Limited.  “When we embarked on the challenge of creating a new sports car company, we knew that coming to market with a vehicle that was ‘as good’ as the competition was not good enough. It was clear we needed a unique concept that offered clear advantages.  More ...

01/20/11
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Trevor Bayne to Drive No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion in 2011  Wood Brothers Racing has announced that 19-year old rookie driver Trevor Bayne will pilot the iconic No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Fusion during the 2011 season. 

Throughout their 61 years of racing in NASCAR the Wood Brothers historically have entrusted their cars to veteran drivers, but they acknowledge that Bayne is not just any rookie.

Bayne made his Sprint Cup debut in the No. 21 last season at Texas; qualifying in on speed and finishing 17th in the race. Those stats don’t tell the whole story. NASCAR’s loop data shows that Bayne passed 140 cars during that race and was passed only 104 times, giving a difference of 36, best among the 43 starters in that race.

With the strong Texas performance behind them, the Woods and Bayne plan to run the first five races on the Sprint Cup schedule, then make selected appearances over the remainder of the season, with an expected total of 17 starts and possibly more. Veteran Donnie Wingo returns to crew chief the team in 2011. More ...

01/20/11
f1
Pirelli conducting first wet weather test  UPDATE Added photo of Pedro de la Rosa doing wet weather testing for Pirelli.

01/17/11 Formula 1's new tire manufacturer, Pirelli, is conducting their first wet weather night test at Abu Dhabi's Yas Marina circuit with Pedro de la Rosa at the wheel.  Pirelli's motorsport director Paul Hembery explained why the firm chose a night test in the Middle East for its pre-season wet running.

"The reason we're here is because it's warmer," he said. "Of course we could find plenty of wet testing in Europe at Valencia, Silverstone or elsewhere, but in Europe when it's wet it's also cold.

"There are wet races in F1 in Asia - Malaysia, Japan, possibly Singapore - and those places are different, the ambient temperature stays very high even when it's raining.

"The compounds are extremely sensitive to temperatures in wet conditions, so this provides different information for us on competitive use.

"And we're testing at night time because we don't want the sun to evaporate the water on the track."

01/20/11
irl
Indianapolis 500 Centennial Tour enters its final stages  For the past week, heroes from past Indianapolis 500 have toured military installations from Germany to Bahrain to Iraq to Turkey and finally Britain to visit troops at military bases and an aircraft carrier at sea.

The reason behind the trip is summed up in a home-made sign in the corner of a window of the ICU at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany "Two small words mean a lot. Thank you."

"This medicine is better than the pharmacy," Air Force Lt. Col. Rich Ciao of San Francisco says about tour participants meeting of the wounded warriors at the facility near Ramstein Air Base in Germany. "This pharmacy doesn't cost anything and isn't dependent on chemicals. It comes from the heart." More ...

01/20/11
irl
Power's family touched by Australian floods  It's been an emotional last week for Will Power. Power's hometown of Toowoomba, Australia, a city located in Northeastern part of the country 80 miles west of Brisbane, and it, has been hit with torrential rains, a rare inland tsunami and destructive floods over the last week, causing wide spread property damage and killing as many as 15 people.

The international headlines surrounding the natural disaster near his family home area has drawn the attention of the IZOD IndyCar Series driver, who now lives near Team Penske's headquarters in North Carolina. Power kept track of his family's status through Facebook and with his Verizon phone. Power's parents own a canvas-making business in Toowoomba that was damaged. Fortunately, no one in the family was injured. More ...

01/20/11
irl
NHR Pleased with Pace at Sebring Test with Hinchcliffe  Newman/Haas Racing (NHR) completed a trouble-free day of testing at the 1.65-mile Sebring International Raceway road course today in warm and sunny conditions.  Canadian James Hinchcliffe spent his third day in an Indy car after testing here with the team in December of 2010.  He set the fastest lap time in the morning and afternoon session of the four cars from four different teams that ran each time according to telemetry from Honda Performance Development.

“It was another good day at Sebring with Newman/Haas Racing,” said Hinchcliffe, 24, who completed 97 laps with a best lap time of 54.08.  “The conditions were much different this time than they were back in December.  While the warmer weather was welcome, the hotter track temperatures made the car a bit of a handful because there had been an ALMS test here earlier this week so there was a lot of different rubber down.  When the sun came out and the track got hot it got a little bit greasy but the engineers did a good job managing the conditions and our program.” More ...

01/20/11
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Clint Bowyer leads first test session at Daytona  The newly paved Daytona International Speedway has gained a little character in the last month but remains extremely smooth, drivers reported Thursday after testing on the new surface.

In the first three hours of Sprint Cup testing Thursday morning, 33 drivers made single-car runs. Drafting practice began with the afternoon session of the three-day test on the 2.5-mile trioval.

It was the first time on the new surface for many drivers. The track, which developed a pothole in Turn 2 that marred last year’s Daytona 500, was repaved for the first time since prior to the 1979 season. A Goodyear tire test in December attracted 17 drivers. More ...

01/20/11
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Rolex 24 At Daytona To Be Showcased On FX, SPEED  Race fans can gear up for the 49th running of the Rolex 24 At Daytona by watching GRAND-AM: Rolex 24 At Daytona, an action-packed show previewing America's premier sports car race, which will debut Saturday at 11 p.m. (ET) on FX.

The one-hour program, produced in association with PGA TOUR Entertainment and NASCAR Media Group, will also air four times on SPEED, including Saturday, Jan. 29, at 2 p.m. (ET), just prior to the network beginning 14 hours of live coverage of the  Rolex 24, the season-opening event for the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16. More ...

01/20/11
f2
Benjamin Lariche secures F2 return for 2011  France’s Benjamin Lariche has today (20 January) been confirmed as the second driver to return to Formula Two for the 2011 season, following the announcement that Britain’s Jack Clarke will also rejoin the series.

Lariche enjoyed an encouraging first season in F2, which was underpinned by striking consistency which saw him collect points in 12 out of 18 races – a record only matched by the championship’s top five drivers.

His best result came in the final round of the year at Valencia, where he qualified second for the opening race before eventually finishing sixth at the chequered flag. He also qualified well at Portimão, Portugal, lining up from fifth for race two, and scored top eight finishers at Monza and Brno. Benjamin then set the outright pace on the second day of winter testing at Portimão in December. More ...

01/20/11
gp3
Status GP signs Alexander Sims for 2011  Status Grand Prix has signed highly-rated Briton Alexander Sims to be one of its three drivers in the GP3 Series in 2011.

Sims is a member of the elite Gravity Sport Management driver development program, and is a former McLaren Autosport BRDC Young Driver Award winner. The 22-year-old arrives in the F1 support-race series after two winning seasons in Euro Series Formula 3, and off the back of his maiden F1 test with the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team in November. More ...

01/20/11
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Daytona testing Jan. 20-22 & NASCAR Preseason Thunder Fan Fest  
  • Next up - Daytona testing Jan. 20-22 & NASCAR Preseason Thunder Fan Fest: Daytona 500 champions Jamie McMurray, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. are among the drivers that will appear at NASCAR Preseason Thunder Fan Fest at historic Daytona International Speedway on Thursday, Jan. 20 and Friday, Jan. 21. The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will take to the new asphalt at Daytona International Speedway in a three-day test session, known as NASCAR Preseason Thunder, Thursday, Jan. 20 through Saturday, Jan. 22.

    Tickets for NASCAR Preseason Thunder Fan Fest are $20 and available by calling 1-800-PITSHOP or online at daytonainternationalspeedway.com. 2011 Daytona 500 ticketholders and children 12 and under will receive free admission. Advanced reservations are available (limited to 250 people) for special autograph sessions to be held with participating 2010 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers and Daytona 500 champions. Additional driver autograph sessions will be held on both days with wristbands available the day of the event. More ...

  • 01/20/11
    f1
    Pirelli says tire price hikes due to raw materials  Pirelli have denied that the recent price increase across the board on all of their tire products is not related to their investment in Formula 1, but rather on the cost of raw materials.
    A spokesperson for the Italian tire manufacturer, when asked if there was a connection told YallaF1.com, “No, this is not connected with the F1 participation – no additional budgets have been allocated for this. Our presence in F1 doesn’t affect our internal costs and we have no need to charge anything to our customers.”

    On Wednesday, 19 January, Pirelli announced an increase of prices in all European, Middle East, African and Asia-Pacific markets for its entire range of tires, as a consequence of the increased prices of key primary materials, in particular natural rubber.

    The price increases, which will take effect on March 1st, will be of 3% for car, SUV and motorcycle tires, and 7% for both heavy and light industrial tires.

    01/20/11
    f1
    Massa finalizes seating position for new Ferrari  Felipe Massa was at Ferrari headquarters in Maranello at the beginning of this week, with the Brazilian engaging in a variety of pre-season activities before completing work for his seating position in 2011’s car.

    Monday saw the 2008 championship runner-up taking to the team’s simulator, also meeting with Technical Director Aldo Costa and Chief Designer Nikolas Tombazis in order to be brought up to date with latest technical developments.

    Massa spent much of Tuesday in the factory’s Assembly Area in order to, as well as working with engineers, confirm his seating position in the cockpit.

    This followed a series of long discussions with Rob Smedley, Race Engineer since the Paulista joined Ferrari at the start of 2006.

    01/20/11
    f1
    Renault says R31 design 'brave'  Renault technical director James Allison has described the team’s approach to the design of its new R31 as being at the “brave end of brave” as it looks to get back to winning ways this year.

    The former world champion team goes into the coming season with a new look following the arrival of Lotus Cars as its title sponsor, with its 2011 cars to be pained in the black and gold livery made famous by the original Lotus Formula 1 team.

    In its first year under the control of the Genii investment group last year, the Enstone-based squad rebounded strongly from its dismal 2009 campaign and re-established itself in the top five of the constructors’ championship. More ...

    01/20/11
    f1
    Latest F1 news in brief - Thursday  
    • Lewis Hamilton
      Pirelli to use different colors on 2011 tires
    • Hamilton to debut new McLaren on February 10
    • Le Mans more likely than F1 for Porsche - boss
    • Rome cools GP bid and eyes 2020 Olympics instead
    • Willi Weber wants to be Vettel's manager More ...
    01/20/11
    f1
    Will Austin GP flop like all the others?  A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, I just watched a piece that Speedvision ran prior to the first running of the USGP at Indy in 2000. During the piece, Bob Varsha talked about the 1984 race in Dallas, Texas, when Keke Rosberg won, what Varsha called a rally race. He mentions the tracks heat (held in July) caused the circuit to break up. How can Tavo Hellmund, Red McCombs, and Texas think that the 2012 race won't be a complete disaster and mirror the 84 Dallas race from a heat standpoint? Yes, the heat of Bahrain, Malaysia, and other venues are fierce (both heat and humidity). But Texas is interested in beer, boating, and football come June, the logical race date since Montreal typically falls during this time frame. You have constantly mentioned the roads leading into the track are no where near acceptable. F1 has been a failure in America. No American drivers or teams for fans to identify with or support. Do you think that Joe the cowboy will be able to understand Jarno Trulli, or be able to pronounce Karthikeyan? Is Bernie staging the race in Texas to appeal to the new Mexican drivers in F1? If so, why not have Carlos Slim underwrite the cost and save Texas and the US the embarrassment, and host the race in Mexico? No one will sit in 100+ degree heat Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, say "Isn't this great?" and come back the following year.

    Speedvision video:

    Part 1: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-mVyOQpZ7Q
    Part 2: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qo0KSPM4jwk&feature=related
    Part 3: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkGWWV_yxjE&feature=related

    Your thoughts?
    Brandon Stevens

    Dear Brandon, No question about it, the Texas heat could be a negative factor for the fans and they will not return.  If the promoter is smart they will cover the grandstands so the fans sit in the shade. We would have moved the race to a cooler month, but when, as the calendar is full.  As for your other reasons, well I think they could all go away if an American driver ever got a competitive ride in F1 and had the talent to win F1 races. Will the race be another financial flop like all the other venues - Dallas, Phoenix, Indy, Sebring, Watkins Glen and Riverside? That depends on whether Austin wants to keep footing much of Bernie's huge sanction fee with taxpayer dollars. And that all depends how much economic benefit the track brings to Austin.  To this day we still maintain that Long Beach was the right setting for F1 in the USA.  Californians love their cars and Long Beach is close to Hollywood and is the perfect fit for the jet-set crowd of F1.  And you cannot beat the weather and the ambiance.  Mark C.

    01/20/11
    f1
    Check out Virgin Racing signs Quantel  Marussia Virgin Racing has announced a new sponsorship deal with content creation systems developer Quantel ahead of the new season, with the company being an award winner for color-correction solutions plus a seller of stereoscopic 3D post systems.

    ‘Quantel aims to use its partnership with Marussia Virgin Racing as a platform to showcase its latest innovative QTube and Stereo3D technologies,’ reads an official statement of the Sheffield-based team.

    ‘QTube allows users to access and edit their assets from anywhere in the world and was recently described by one broadcaster as 'a real game changer'.’

    “I am delighted to welcome Quantel to the Team as an official partner,” comments squad CEO Graeme Lowdon. “Quantel is a company that is passionate about creating solutions for its customers on a worldwide scale and we both have a shared commitment to excellence in technology.”
    01/20/11
    nassprint
    Former NASCAR driver injured in stabbing  The Henry County Sheriff's Office is investigating the malicious wounding of former NASCAR driver and current engine supplier Joey Arrington of Oak Level Road, Bassett, VA. On January 15, 2011, Deputies were summoned to the Oak Level area in reference to Arrington being stabbed. He was treated at the Martinsville Memorial Hospital for two stab wounds to his chest and later transported to Carillion Hospital in Roanoke Va. where he was treated and released. Arrington told police his ex-girlfriend, Katherine Elaine "Kathy" Mullins, came to his residence. An altercation started which ended with Arrington being stabbed and his personal property being damaged. More at Martinsville Daily
    01/20/11
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    The official announcement Elliott to Phoenix Racing  For the first time in his career, Bill Elliott will start the season as a Chevrolet driver. He has teamed up with James Finch's Phoenix Racing to run the #09 Chevrolet in a minimum of 18 races this season. The new combo will start the season at Daytona, where Elliott has four Sprint Cup wins including two in the Daytona 500 and Finch has finishes of third, fourth, ninth, 10th and 12th. Phoenix Racing team also has a Cup victory at Daytona's sister track, Talladega Superspeedway, in 2009 with Brad Keselowski driving. "It's big for us and big for Chevrolet to get Bill Elliott," Finch said. "It's the first time in his career that he's committed to race a Chevrolet." Finch also said he was confident that even at age 55 Elliott, whose previous Cup wins have come in Fords and Dodges, can get the job done in his Chevrolets. "With the right equipment, he's ready," Finch said. "He was just a couple of hundredths of a second off the pole at Homestead last year." Nick Harrison will serve as crew chief on the #09 Impala, and the team will use engines from Hendrick Motorsports. Bill Elliott said he's excited to be moving to Phoenix Racing and to the Chevrolet camp. More ...
    01/20/11
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    Wix teams up with Stewart Haas Racing  WIX Filters has joined Stewart-Haas Racing as the team's official filter. The two-car NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team will use WIX Filters in Tony Stewart's #14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevy and Ryan Newman's #39 U.S. Army/Tornados/Haas Automation Chevy. To kick off the partnership, WIX Filters will be the primary sponsor of Newman and the #39 team in the Feb. 12 Budweiser Shootout at Daytona. WIX Filters will rejoin Newman and the #39 team as primary sponsor for the Aug. 21 Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, where Newman is a two-time Sprint Cup race victor and a one-time pole winner. When not serving as a primary sponsor, WIX Filters will have brand identification beneath the hoods of both Stewart-Haas Racing entries and on the sleeve of Newman's uniform. Stewart-Haas Racing
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