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DATE News (chronologically)
01/27/11
nassprint
Dale Jr. & Rick Hendrick join in the call for shorter races & shorter season  While the topic has always been there, the idea of shorter races is building momentum this week. It started with Fox Sports Chairman David Hill saying earlier this week he thought the races were too long. Wednesday, both Dale Earnhardt Jr. and car owner Rick Hendrick said the races needed to be shorter and both said the season should be shorter also.

So, in the last few days that is one of the most influential sports television figures, NASCAR's most popular driver and one of NASCAR's most successful car owners calling for similar change. Now, understand, that California's race this year has been shortened from 500 miles to 400. Also the spring Phoenix race has been shortened. Last year it was a 600K race. This year, it will be a 500K race.

Yet, momentum is building for more changes. Consider what Dale Jr. and Hendrick said. More ...

01/27/11
motogp
Rossi tests Ducati at Misano  
Valentino Rossi
Misano Circuit
: Seventy-three days after an operation to his right shoulder, Valentino Rossi returned to the track at Misano Adriatico aboard a Ducati 1198 Superbike. On November 14 at Cattolica’s Cervesi hospital, the Italian had undergone surgery on the supraspinatus tendon and the long head of biceps tendon, as well as cartilage in the Glenoid Labrum.

The day was sunny but chilly, with a maximum air temperature of 10§ Centigrade (50§ Fahrenheit) and a maximum track temperature of 15§ C (59§ F). Valentino arrived at the circuit at around 1:20 and met a team of Ducati technicians that included his own crew’s two engineers, Matteo Flamigni and Gabriele Conti, as well as Ducati MotoGP Team Manager Vittoriano Guareschi. A half-hour later, he turned the first laps aboard the 1198 to test the status of his shoulder which, though recovering nicely, is still quite painful, just a few days ahead of the first test in Malaysia with the Desmosedici GP11. More ...

01/27/11
irl
IndyCar and iRacing.com announce Premier Virtual Racing Series  IZOD IndyCar Series fans and driving game enthusiasts will now be able to take their passion for the sport to a new level by getting behind the wheel in the iRacing.com IZOD IndyCar Premier Series. 

The 18-race, 36-week series begins February 19 and will utilize iRacing.com's virtual version of the Dallara IC 09 IndyCar.  Races will be hosted on many of the same tracks as the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series, including the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"Our current fans are passionate about the sport and looking for ways to get closer to it," INDYCAR CEO Randy Bernard said. "The iRacing.com IZOD IndyCar Premier Series is an opportunity for our dedicated fans to have an extremely active and relevant involvement with the sport, as well as a unique way to appreciate the skills of our athletes." More ...

01/27/11
ga
Bergmeister Captures Pole for Rolex 24 At Daytona  Jorg Bergmeister surprised even himself Thursday at Daytona International Speedway.

Asked by his team to attempt one more lap in the 15-minute session, Bergmeister laid down a Daytona Prototype track qualifying record lap of 1:40.099 (128.033 mph) to capture the pole for Saturday's 49th Rolex 24 At Daytona.

The race takes the green flag at 3:30 p.m. (ET). SPEED will provide seven hours of live coverage on Saturday beginning at 3 p.m., and resuming with seven hours on Sunday beginning at 9 a.m. More ...

01/27/11
f1
Ecclestone 'happy' to discuss Melbourne GP axe  (GMM)  Bernie Ecclestone has angrily hit back at calls for the Australian grand prix to be moved away from Melbourne.

The city's Lord Mayor Robert Doyle said recently that the annual Albert Park event is no longer value for money for the Victorian state taxpayer.

He speculated that one possible outcome was that the sport's "cranky" chief executive will replace the race by taking "the dollars of either an Asian or oil-rich Middle Eastern state".

Ecclestone hit back by warning that even though there is a contract in place to 2015, he would be "happy" to scrap the race. More ...

01/27/11
alms
Baltimore wants to be most sustainable race  The Baltimore Grand Prix today announced at the Washington Auto Show a strategy that would result in it becoming the most sustainable racing event in the U.S. Scott Atherton, President and CEO of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n, introduced BGP President Jay Davidson who made the announcement at the U.S. Department of Energy display at the show.

The ALMS, which races in the inaugural Baltimore Grand Prix on Sept. 2-3, is recognized as the Global Leader in Green Racing. All race cars compete using alternative fuels and energy sources as manufacturers develop innovative, fuel-efficient technologies that ultimately transfer to consumer vehicles. 

Dyson Racing, which competes in the ALMS, had its Mazda-powered Lola prototype on display and was lauded as of the type of car that fans would see race at the American Le Mans Series’ event along Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The Dyson LMP1 class race car uses isobutanol as its fuel and G-Oil, a non-petroleum animal-fat based lubricant, for its oil. Dyson announced G-Oil as a new corporate partner earlier this week. More ...
01/27/11
alms
Guy Smith re-signs with Dyson Racing  Yorkshireman Guy Smith will compete for Dyson Racing in the American Le Mans Series for a seventh consecutive year.

The 36-year-old from Beverley drives a Lola Coupe for a third year eager to claim his first ALMS title in this year's nine-race series which begins with the Sebring 12 Hours in mid-March.

"I'm delighted to be staying with Dyson Racing for a seventh season," confirmed the 2003 Le Mans 24 Hour race winner. More ...

01/27/11
irl
Coors Light to be official beer sponsor for Milwaukee IndyCar race  Promoters of the IZOD IndyCar Series race weekend at The Milwaukee Mile announced that MillerCoors and Beer Capitol Distributing will join together to be a prominent sponsor of the Milwaukee 225.

The deal makes Coors Light the official beer sponsor of the June 19 race as the IZOD IndyCar Series returns to The Mile after a one-year absence. In addition to signage and hospitality, the sponsorship also establishes Coors Light as the title sponsor of the race's pole qualifying day.

"We have a long history of supporting great racing at The Milwaukee Mile and look forward to an exciting race this summer," said Jim Wright, MillerCoors general manager-sales for Wisconsin. "Coors Light, The World's Most Refreshing Beer, is the perfect complement to an afternoon spent enjoying hot racing action on the track. And thanks to our outstanding partners at Beer Capitol Distributing, we'll be able to ensure race fans have that ideal experience at the track." More ...

01/27/11
automotive
GM: Volts to be in dealerships nationwide by end of 2011  
Chevy Volt
General Motors plans to have Chevrolet Volts in all participating dealerships nationwide by the end of this year, accelerating the launch of its Detroit-built extended-range electric car.

Nationwide ordering will begin in the second quarter, GM said today in a statement.

The Volt has already launched in California, New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Texas and Washington, D.C. Deliveries in Michigan will start in February and March, spokesman Rob Peterson said. GM had previously said it planned to sell Volts in all 50 states by mid-2012.

GM is hoping the Volt will bring new customers to Chevrolet, which accounts for about 70% of its U.S. sales volume. Chevrolet marketing chief Rick Scheidt said the brand is accelerating the Volt rollout partially because of increased showroom traffic in launch markets to see the vehicle. GM's statement cited Criswell Chevrolet, a metropolitan Washington, D.C., dealership, which has 10 to 15 customers visit weekly who are considering the Volt. Many of those customers own non-GM brands. More ...

01/27/11
automotive
GM dropping request for $14.4B from Energy Department  General Motors Co. is announcing today it will end its request for as much as $14.4 billion in loans from the Energy Department's $25 billion retooling program.

GM had applied for $14.4 billion in loans to retool plants and build more fuel-efficient vehicles, including about $4.4 billion in applications by operations that were reacquired from Delphi, its former auto supplier.

"This decision is based on our confidence in GM's overall progress and strong, global business performance," said GM chief financial officer Chris Liddell. "Withdrawing our DOE loan application is consistent with our goal to carry minimal debt on our balance sheet." More ...

01/27/11
USF2000
Karam grappling for success on, off track  Sage Karam is one of the top young racing drivers in the United States, but that doesn't matter to the Liberty Hurricanes wrestler the other side of the mat.

To Liberty's wrestler, Karam is the guy wrestling in the 125-pound weight class for the Nazareth Area High School Blue Eagles JV team. He doesn't care that Karam was the USF2000 National Champion for a team owned by local racing hero Michael Andretti.

He doesn't even care that Karam's dad, Jody, is the coach for his school. He's the opposition, and he wants to beat him.

Such is the life in the offseason for Karam, high school wrestler during the fall/winter and professional racing driver for Andretti Autosport during the spring and summer. More ...

01/27/11
usac
USAC National Drivers Champion Clauson to test Firestone Indy Lights car  Bryan Clauson has enjoyed about 10 days at home in Noblesville, Ind., since securing the inaugural USAC National Drivers Championship on Thanksgiving night. He's been on the road, competing in New Zealand for three weeks and in the annual Chili Bowl (fifth place in the main event) in Tulsa, Okla., most recently.

Now the 21-year-old will get behind the wheel of a Firestone Indy Lights car for the first time Jan. 28 at Phoenix International Raceway with Sam Schmidt Motorsports. Winning the USAC title includes a scholarship to compete in the six oval races on the 2011 Firestone Indy Lights schedule beginning with the Firestone Freedom 100 on May 27 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. More ...

01/27/11
ga
Chevrolet Signs On As Official Partner With GRAND-AM  Chevrolet will be more visible both on and off the track this year, as an official promotional partner of GRAND-AM Road Racing for the first time.

Chevrolet will supply the official pace vehicle and have a major at-track presence for the races at Elkhart Lake (Wisc.) in June and Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International in August.

"Being a partner with GRAND-AM is an exciting opportunity for Chevrolet," said Jeff Chew, marketing manager, Chevy Racing. "In addition to being the pace vehicle later this summer, Chevrolet also will bring its Team Chevy Racing Display trackside for the fans to enjoy. Chevy's display showcases its full lineup of award-winning cars and trucks."  More ...

01/27/11
f2
Thiemo Storz to make Formula Two bow in 2011  
Thiemo Storz
Germany's Thiemo Storz will contest his maiden season in international single seater racing after becoming the latest name to be confirmed for the 2011 FIA Formula Two Championship.

Storz has enjoyed success in a wide variety of series since making his single seater debut in 2008 - including a dominant campaign in the 2009 Formula 2000 Light Italy series, where he claimed nine wins, ten podiums and 11 poles from the 11 races.

Still only 19, Storz elected to sit out much of the 2010 season in order to prepare for his final exams. He did however test in a multitude of championships in order to assess his options for 2011, including a successful spell in Formula Palmer Audi where he finished second behind champion Nigel Moore in his maiden race at Rockingham. He gained his first experience of the Williams JPH1B F2 car when he joined all four days of winter testing at Portimão and Barcelona at the end of 2010. More ...

01/27/11
irl
fil
Indy Lights champ finally gets an IndyCar test  
Conquest Racing is keeping up its tradition of helping young up and coming drivers by giving current Firestone Indy Lights champion JK Vernay his first test in the IZOD IndyCar Series.

The Frenchman will be getting behind the wheel of an Indy car for the first time January 31 at Sebring International Raceway.

Vernay won the Indy Lights championship in his rookie season on the strength of eight podium finishes, including five wins, three of which came from pole position. He totaled 10 top-fives in 13 races and led a season high 172 laps while taking the title with a 23-point advantage over second place.

“I’m very happy to be taking part in my first IndyCar test and want to thank Eric Bachelart and Conquest Racing for giving me this opportunity,” shared the pilot whose JK initials stand for Jean-Karl. “I’m also glad it is taking place at Sebring International Raceway. I tested there last year with my Indy Lights team so I will be able to concentrate on driving the car and not have to worry about learning the track. More ...

01/27/11
f1
Technical realignment at McLaren  Paddy Lowe has been named as the technical director of McLaren Racing, moving up from his previous position as the team’s engineering director. Tim Goss, the chief engineer on the McLaren MP4-25 moves up to fill Lowe’s previous job.  Neil Oatley will remain in his role as director of design and development programs.

“It’s great for Neil and me to be joined by Tim as another director on the technical side,” explains Paddy. “With the three of us, we’ll not only be able to more efficiently spread our workload, but, through Tim and me, we’ll also share race attendance. It’s very important to have senior technical management at the racetrack, because that’s where you score the points, but, equally, if you spend all your time away then you risk overlooking some of the hard work that happens back at the factory.”

The trio have between them a total of 62 years at McLaren. Joe Saward

01/27/11
nassprint
Ned Jarrett recovering from heart procedure  Retired NASCAR champion and 2011 NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Ned Jarrett is on the rebound after undergoing a heart procedure last month. Jarrett, scheduled to be inducted as part of the hall's second class in May, experienced chest pains and had a pair of stents inserted to open blockages in a procedure Dec. 28, Jarrett said Wednesday. He underwent a similar procedure and had four stents inserted several years ago. Jarrett said Wednesday he is on the way to returning to normal after several weeks of recovering from the procedure and adjusting to medications. SPEED
01/27/11
nassprint
Johnson, Earnhardt to have 3 pit crews available  Jimmie Johnson will have a primarily new pit crew as part of a plan by crew chief Chad Knaus to shore up depth on the teams of Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Knaus and Steve Letarte, the crew chief for Earnhardt Jr., will take three pit crews to the track each weekend. That will give them a talent pool of 18 crewmen to draw on if they encounter injuries of performance problems. The lack of pit crew depth at HMS came under the spotlight during the Chase at Texas when Knaus swapped pit crews with Jeff Gordon's team in the middle of the race after the four-time champion crashed out. Knaus said four of the members of the #48 team before the swap remain in the mix for his crew, adding he has not finalized anything and probably won't have a set six for the entire season. The others have moved on to other organizations. The team of Gordon and Mark Martin will work under a slightly different system, with six full-time crewmen for each car and another four to share between them for depth. ESPN.com
01/27/11
nassprint
Mark Martin not finished after this year  Mark Martin may be in the final year of his NASCAR Sprint Cup contract with Hendrick Motorsports, but don't count him out of racing. Wednesday at the Hendrick Motorsports shop, Martin erased any doubt that he could be racing in 2012. "I'm absolutely, without a doubt, going to be driving race cars next year, just not going to be in any hurry to worry about that," he said. "I'm focused on 2011 and really enjoying being a part of Hendrick Motorsports." Asked further about the issue later, he said that it was too early to be even thinking in that direction and that it would be better to approach him about what he'll be racing, and for whom, late in the season. Fox Sports
01/27/11
nassprint
Evernham concerned with owners' ability to walk away  
Ray Evernham
Former Evernham Motorsports owner Ray Evernham told Sirius NASCAR Radio's Sirius Speedway with Dave Moody Tuesday that he is troubled by the ability of owners to pull up stakes and leave the sport without paying their bills. While never identifying former partner George Gillett by name, Evernham said, "When a company goes out of business or leaves without paying people, it's not just drivers and crew chiefs (who are affected). There are tons of other people who get hurt. People are allowed to fly back to their lives on private jets, drink champagne and (go) skiing, while other people are left trying to figure out how to put food on the table. That kind of pisses me off. It's a shame that there are a lot of really good people who are owed a heck of a lot of money," said Evernham.

"The press releases go out talking about how great everyone is doing now, and that's not totally true. There are a lot of people who have been left holding the bag, and a lot of people out of work. All you can do is hope that what goes around, comes around, and that the legal system -- or karma -- take care of it at some point." Sirius Speedway
01/27/11
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Thursday  
  • Vettel
    2012 'option' to keep Vettel at Red Bull
  • Vettel and Hamilton had 'easier' route to F1 - di Resta
  • Sutil admits to 'listening' to rival offers
  • Manager Weber eyes 2012 return for Hulkenberg
  • Italian police seize 1.5m alleging Briatore tax fraud

2012 'option' to keep Vettel at Red Bull
(GMM)  A results clause in Sebastian Vettel's contract means the reigning world champion is unlikely to leave Red Bull at the end of this year.

Having become F1's youngest ever title winner in 2010, the 23-year-old German has been linked with a high profile move to Ferrari.

Vettel remains under contract for 2011, but it was believed that the 'option' relating to 2012 was exercisable by either the driver or the Austrian team.

But in an article published by the Red Bull-owned Speed Week magazine, it is revealed that if Vettel wins a prescribed number of races this year, and finishes the championship in the top three, he will be locked in for 2012.

The editorial said that all the speculation about Vettel's future beyond 2011 was "written without knowledge of his contractual situation" regarding the 2012 option.

"There is an option based on the results," Red Bull's Helmut Marko confirmed.  "We will not just let a top driver go." More ...

01/26/11
automotive
Feds open probe into 2010 Fusions  Federal safety regulators have opened a preliminary investigation into 280,000 2010 Ford Fusion vehicles over wheel stability concerns.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said it is reviewing four complaints on 2010 Ford Fusion vehicles that allege wheel stud fractures.

Three complaints belong to the same 22-vehicle fleet but were assigned to different drivers who said they experienced the problem on three separate occasions. All four vehicles had low-mileage -- between 5,000 and 11,000 miles -- and the wheels had never been serviced prior to the incidents. More ...

01/26/11
automotive
Lobbyists grease pockets of politicians and voids car warranties for millions of Americans  Not everyone is happy with the latest E15 ruling from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Last Friday, the EPA ruled to allow consumers who drive conventional vehicles or light duty trucks manufactured between 2001-2006 to use E15, a blend of 15 percent ethanol, 85 percent gasoline. In October of 2010, the EPA allowed the use of E15 in the model year 2007 or newer.

One group who is disappointed with the decision is the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC). “It’s very disappointing that the administration made this decision given the rising price of corn and the lower estimate for this year’s corn harvest that recently was announced,” said Randy Spronk, a hog and crop farmer from Edgerton, Minn., who serves on NPPC’s board of directors and is chairman of the organization’s Environment Committee. More ...

01/26/11
automotive
American Honda hooks up with UTI  Universal Technical Institute, Inc. (UTI) and American Honda Motor Co., Inc. have announced plans to offer Honda's Professional Automotive Career Training (P.A.C.T.) program at a UTI campus beginning this summer.

The program will be offered at UTI's Glendale Heights, Ill. campus, and will be the only P.A.C.T. training location in the Metropolitan Chicago area. 

Prior to participating in Honda P.A.C.T., students must complete UTI's core automotive program. During P.A.C.T. coursework, students will have the opportunity to complete factory maintenance and repair section certifications in several areas, including Express Service, General Maintenance, Electrical Repair, Engine Repair, Transmission Repair, Fuel System Repair, Air Conditioning Repair, Steering & Suspension Repair, and Brake Repair. Upon completion of the program, a student will have completed a minimum of 63 weeks of training and be eligible for entry-level employment with participating Honda and Acura dealers. More ...

01/26/11
ga
Bennett Racing Announces Lineup for 24 Hours of Daytona  Bennett Racing is proud to formally announce the driving lineup for the 2011 Rolex 24 hours of Daytona in their #56 yellow and black liveried Ferrari F430 GT class effort. The drivers include Mike Skeen, Glynn Geddie, Jean-Francois Dumoulin, Michael Davidson, and Jonathan Allen. This will mark a departure from the driver seat for Team Principal Skip Bennett who raced in the 2010 season for the first time at the Virginia International Raceway. The 2011 Rolex 24 hours of Daytona is being held on January 29-30, 2011 at the Daytona International Speedway. It is the official start of the 2011 GRAND-AM season.
01/26/11
racing news
Ford Racing High Performance Driving School Announces 2011 Schedule  The Ford Racing High Performance Driving School, based at Miller Motorsports Park, is pleased to announce their complete schedule of schools for 2011.

The Ford Racing High Performance Driving School, the only official Ford Racing school, offers something for everyone including the world’s only two-hour Mustang Driving Experience, plus one-, two- and three-day high performance driving schools and a full-blown race licensing program.

“We’re really excited about the New Year,” said Dan McKeever, Director of Miller Performance Schools, “and our 2011 schedule provides a variety of opportunities for drivers to sharpen their skills. Whether you’re going racing or just driving on the highway, let us make you a better driver.” More ...

01/26/11
nassprint
NASCAR Chase will go to top 10, plus 2 biggest winners  Twelve NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers will make the Chase for the Sprint Cup in 2011 -- the top 10 in points and the two drivers not in the top 10 who have the most race victories in NASCAR's 26-race regular season. NASCAR Chairman and CEO Brian France goes is expected to confirm that arrangement, along with a points system that gives 43 points to race winners and then one-point increments down to just one point for the last-place finisher. Each driver who leads a lap will get one bonus point, and regular-season race winners are expected to get two or three Chase bonus points for each victory. There will be no knockout rounds in the Chase, as NASCAR had hinted at earlier. SPEED
01/26/11
automotive
Toyota recalls 1.7M vehicles for fuel leaks  Toyota Motor Corp. said it is recalling nearly 1.7 million cars worldwide today for fuel leaks - the latest in a series of damaging recalls for the world's largest automaker.

Most of the vehicles, nearly 1.3 million, are being recalled in Japan.

But it covers 245,000 2006-07 Lexus GS300/350, 2006-09 Lexus IS250 and 2006-08 Lexus IS350 vehicles sold in the United States to inspect the fuel pressure sensor installation. Most of the vehicles being recalled - 177,000 - are IS models.  More ...

01/26/11
f1
F1 concept car of 2020 revealed  
2020 F1 concept car
Formula 1 car design will undergo more radical change in the next 10 years than in the last decade, according to the new F1 Racing magazine.

The magazine, revamped at the end of last year, has teamed up with Renault F1 chief designer Pat Symonds to give motorsport fans a glimpse of what the F1 car of 2020 will look like and how it will perform.

Low-profile tires on bigger wheels, the return of ground effects aerodynamics, Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems (KERS) that produce 250bhp and a standard, non-downforce rear wing will all be components, according to Symonds.

The article, featured in Issue 179 of F1 Racing, on sale from January 27, theorizes on how future regulation changes could lead to radically-different F1 designs. More ...

01/26/11
f1
SPEED Presents 2010 Mario Andretti Trophy to F1 Champ Vettel  Fresh off a 10-day goodwill tour of Europe and the Middle East to visit U.S. service members with a contingent of IndyCar drivers, racing legend Mario Andretti traveled to Red Bull Racing’s Formula One headquarters in Milton Keynes, Great Britain to present 2010 FIA Formula One World Champion Sebastian Vettel with the Mario Andretti Trophy as the 2010 SPEED Performer of the Year.

“I follow F1 very closely and knew of Sebastian's plight last season,” said Andretti, recently named one of the “25 Coolest Athletes of All Time” by GQ Magazine. “At one point, he was almost out of the championship running and few people would have bet on him.  But Sebastian didn't give up.  He fought until the end and he got it done.  I watched him with respect and admiration -- greatly appreciating what he was doing.  He was at the top of his game.  It took concentration that was all-consuming.  It took fierce determination and tenacity. More ...

01/26/11
f1
Force India F1 Team confirms Sutil, di Resta and Hülkenberg for 2011 season  The Force India F1 Team is delighted to confirm it has finalized its driver line-up for the 2011 FIA Formula One World Championship season. Following weeks of speculation, Adrian Sutil will continue with the Silverstone-based team for a fifth consecutive season and will be joined by Paul di Resta, who will make his Formula One race debut. Nico Hülkenberg will join Force India as the test and reserve driver as part of a long-term partnership with the team.

Twenty-seven year old Adrian, from south Germany, enjoyed his most successful season in F1 last year, securing 47 points to help the team to seventh position in the constructors' championship. En route to his highest-ever drivers' championship classification he notched up nine points scoring positions, including fifth in the Malaysian Grand Prix. He is now hungry to achieve both his, and the team's, ultimate goal of becoming a regular podium challenger. More ...

01/26/11
f1
Q&As with Adrian Sutil, Paul di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg  

Q&A with Adrian Sutil:

1. You're back with Force India for another season! What are your feelings about this?
I made my F1 debut with the team back in 2007 and we've worked together since then, so to stay for another year here feels very right. I've always said that I feel good in this team, it feels like family and when you feel good, you are confident and can push to your maximum. We've made some good progress together over the past four years and I'm excited to be part of the team when it takes the next step, which is hopefully to become a front running team. We have the same ambitions so it makes a lot of sense to achieve them together.

2. What made you want to stay with the team?
Over the past four years we've made huge progress. When I started we were at the back of the grid and since then we've got stronger and stronger and are now achieving real results. Force India is now genuinely a strong midfield team, but it's got plans to be even better: I've seen the plans for this year and it looks positive. The car will be quite strong, the team work well together and with the new regulations favoring smaller teams we should be in a good position for the future. More ...

01/26/11
f1
'Shame' Hulkenberg only tester in 2011 - Sutil  (GMM)  Force India on Wednesday finally confirmed one of F1's worst-kept secrets. It has been known unofficially for some time that Paul di Resta is stepping up to a race seat this year alongside Adrian Sutil.

The holdup has been the situation surrounding the ousted Vitantonio Liuzzi, who possessed a fully-binding race contract for 2011.

The setting for Wednesday's official announcement was a whiskey sponsor's Glasgow headquarters, close to the birthplace of the debuting di Resta. More ...

01/26/11
f1
Rosberg happy to give Schumacher lower race number  (GMM)  Nico Rosberg has shrugged off his allocation of the higher car number at Mercedes for the second season in succession.

Last year, with Michael Schumacher coming out of retirement, Rosberg agreed to relinquish the lower number 3 because the returning seven time world champion is "a bit superstitious" and prefers to wear odd race numbers.

Schumacher went on to score 70 fewer points than his younger cohort but, for the forthcoming 2011 season, Mercedes has once again agreed to allocate the premier odd number (7) to the 42-year-old.

"We talked about it in the team about a month ago," Rosberg told the Stuttgarter Zeitung newspaper.  "Michael wanted the number 7. More ...

01/26/11
f1
Webber 'standoff' caused by Vettel defects - Marko  (GMM)  There would never have been a single mention of team orders at Red Bull had Sebastian Vettel enjoyed a run of technical reliability in 2010.

That is the claim of Helmut Marko, Red Bull's ever-controversial driver manager and motor racing right-hand man to team owner Dietrich Mateschitz.

Vettel, the new reigning champion, and his teammate butted heads last year when Webber led the championship and pundits pushed the wisdom of a team strategy in the Australian's favor.

There were claims of team favoritism in Vettel's favor but Red Bull clung to its stated policy of equality and the young German ultimately won the battle. More ...

01/26/11
nascar
Live coverage of Brian France's address Wednesday evening  SPEED will carry NASCAR Chairman & CEO Brian France's media address and subsequent Q&A live and without commercial interruption Wednesday around 7 p.m. ET as part of NASCAR Race Hub. France's "state of the sport" address from the NASCAR Hall of Fame, expected to include an announcement regarding a revamped points system, is scheduled as part of NASCAR's stop on the annual Sprint Media Tour hosted by Charlotte Motor Speedway. Bob Dillner will report live from the NASCAR Hall of Fame. In addition to full coverage of France's speech, the Hub on Wednesday also features in-studio analysis with Jeff Hammond and a satellite interview with Darrell Waltrip. SPEED
01/26/11
nassprint
SPEED to Honor Earnhardt with special  To recognize the 10th anniversary of Dale Earnhardt Sr.'s death in the 2001 Daytona 500, SPEED announced it would broadcast a one-hour special titled "The Day: Remembering Dale Earnhardt" on Feb. 11 at 7:30 p.m. EST. The program will reflect on the tragic events of that Sunday from sunrise to sunset and focus on how that moment forever changed NASCAR. The Day: Remembering Dale Earnhardt, will mark the first time Michael Waltrip, who won the 2001 Daytona 500, will give a television interview to discuss the death of his former car owner, friend and mentor. CMS Media Tour Notes

[Editor's Note: What the special won't tell you is that Dale Earnhardt would still be alive today had NASCAR not refused to mandate the HANS Device like other series had already done - CART, IndyCar and F1 for example.  Indirectly NASCAR killed their biggest star.]

01/26/11
nascar
NASCAR announces deal with K&N Filters  NASCAR announced that it has reached an exclusive agreement with K&N Filters for the company's air and oil filters to be designated the "#1 Filter in NASCAR." This multi-year agreement provides K&N with a marketing platform to enhance and differentiate its products and drive sales. K&N will utilize the NASCAR Performance brand marks and intellectual property on its packaging, as well as within literature, on its advertising and promotional programs, and at industry events. In addition to its exclusive NASCAR Performance partnership, K&N will maintain its status as an official developmental series partner of NASCAR by continuing its run as title sponsor of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series and also will remain a NASCAR Prize Money & Decal (Contingency) Program sponsor in the Sprint Cup Series, Nationwide Series, Camping World Truck Series, NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and NASCAR Whelen All-American Series. NASCAR
01/26/11
tv news
SPEED to have 100 Hours of Speedweeks Coverage  SPEED will broadcast more than 100 hours of programming from Daytona Speedweeks this year, highlighted by live coverage of the Gatorade Duel at Daytona on Feb. 17 at 2 pm/et and the Camping World Truck Series season opener Feb. 18 at 7:30 m/et. SPEED will open its Daytona Speedweeks lineup with coverage of NASCAR Media Day on Feb. 10 at 7 pm/et, followed at 8:30 pm/et by the series premiere of The 10, a fast-paced list program highlighting the best of the best from the world of NASCAR, whose premiere counts down "NASCAR's Closest Calls." NASCAR RaceDay Built by The Home Depot returns for its sixth season in 2011 starring John Roberts, Kyle Petty, Kenny Wallace, Hermie Sadler and Wendy Venturini. The cast will deliver a special three-hour edition on Feb. 20 at 9 am/et, leading into NASCAR on FOX coverage of the Daytona 500. CMS Media Tour Notes
01/26/11
nassprint
FOX's David Hill calls for NASCAR races of 3 hours max  It was just a little Monday night reception and hospitality event on the Charlotte Media Tour. The new president of FOX Sports, Eric Shanks, was meeting the NASCAR media. Along with Shanks was Patti Wheeler, who has taken over the programming and production departments at SPEED.

The elephant in the room was the colorful Aussie who is never at a loss for words where his opinions on NASCAR are concerned. FOX Chairman David Hill recently gave up the day-to-day management of FOX Sports to Shanks, but in return took over the SPEED network and immediately installed Wheeler to begin his revamp. More ...
01/26/11
f1
Sutil's wet dream - a Ferrari seat  
Like every other driver in this world, Sutil's wet dream is to drive for Ferrari
Adrian Sutil is expected to be confirmed as a Force India driver for the 2011 season on Wednesday, but he admits to dreams of driving for Ferrari.

The German impressed throughout the 2010 season, leading to rumors that he was on his way to one of the top four teams. While this will not transpire in 2011, Sutil has indicated his love of all things Ferrari.

"I think the road cars are cool. I think the racing team is cool. I think the color is cool. It is something very special," Sutil told Auto Moto und Sport.

Having enjoyed many a battle with Lewis Hamilton during the duo's time in the Formula 3 Euroseries when they were team-mates at the ASM outfit, Sutil is keen to revive the relationship.

"I would love to drive in a team with Lewis Hamilton again," he admitted. More ...

01/26/11
f1
Mad-Croc and the Sauber F1 Team extend their partnership  The crocodile won’t release its bite: Mad-Croc is to remain a Premium Partner of Sauber Motorsport. The logo of the UK-based producer of energy gum, chews and drinks will now be added to the air deflectors on the sides of the monocoque of the Sauber F1 Team race cars.

“Mad-Croc’s products are a perfect match for Formula One,” says Team Principal Peter Sauber. “We are delighted to be able to renew this partnership.” More ...
01/26/11
irl
John Miller to Create Sports Agency Inside NBC  
NBC-Comcast is getting a little bit closer to creating a sports juggernaut. John Miller, the former CMO of NBC Universal Television Group, will helm “The NBC Sports Agency” as soon as the Comcast merger closes. The group will be similar to “The NBC Agency,” which Miller created and ran from 1999-2010, and serve as the go-to agency for all sports-related advertising at the Peacock.

John Miller, NBC Universal Television Group CMO and one of television’s most decorated marketing and promotion executives, will be shifting his focus to the NBC Sports Group to create and head “The NBC Sports Agency,” as soon as the pending acquisition of NBC Universal by Comcast is complete.

Miller, known for his unprecedented ability to build viewer awareness and interest in new programs, is credited with creating the ubiquitous “Must See TV” campaign and branding such hit shows as Seinfeld, Friends, ER and The Cosby Show, as well as creating campaigns for the Olympics and “Sunday Night Football,” which resulted in record viewership. He is a four-time Entertainment Marketer of the Year, a former Promotion Executive of the Year, a PROMAX Hall of Fame member, and received a Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Commercial that also won the World’s Best Commercial award. More ...

01/26/11
f1
Marko keeps firing in Ferrari war of words  
Helmut Marko
(GMM)  Helmut Marko has kept firing amid the war of words between 2010 championship rivals Red Bull and Ferrari.

Marko recently likened Ferrari's hiring of strategy boss Neil Martin as a move to poach Red Bull's "spirit", prompting Luca di Montezemolo's retort that the Austrian team doesn't "know how to behave as champions".

"This was all blown up by a newspaper," Red Bull consultant and driver program manager Marko insisted, according to Auto Bild Motorsport. More ...

01/26/11
f1
HRT engineer returns to Williams  (GMM)  A prominent race engineer has returned to Williams for the 2011 season.

Spaniard Xevi Pujolar switched from the famous British team to the new Spanish outfit HRT last year.

At Williams, he formerly worked with the likes of Mark Webber, Juan Pablo Montoya and Ralf Schumacher and most recently Kazuki Nakajima, and this year will engineer fellow Spanish speaker Pastor Maldonado, according to virutasf1.com.

Another departed HRT team member is press officer Tabatha Valls, who has moved to Virgin.

01/25/11
alms
irl
State lends $500,000 to Baltimore Grand Prix race organizers  Maryland's economic development agency has given a $500,000 loan to the organizers of an IndyCar race planned for Baltimore over Labor Day weekend.

The loan from the quasi-public Maryland Economic Development Corp. to Baltimore Racing Development was made just as the group was required to make a $500,000 bond payment to the Maryland Stadium Authority.

Jay Davidson, president of Baltimore Racing Development, says the timing of the loan and the bond payment was a coincidence. He says the group has "millions of dollars in ticket revenue" for the inaugural Baltimore Grand Prix and didn't need the money to pay the stadium authority.

01/25/11
automotive
GM's China sales pass U.S. for first time  General Motors sold more cars and trucks in China last year than it did in the U.S., for the first time in the company’s 102-year history.

Despite GM’s growth in China, Toyota Motor held onto the title of world’s largest automaker. The Japanese company reported 8.42 million sales worldwide last year. That’s 30,000 more than GM’s 8.39 million. More ...

01/25/11
f1
New Ferrari F1 to be called F150 to honor Italian Republic  
Luca di Montezemolo
(GMM)  Ferrari's 2011 formula one car will be called F150, the famous Italian team has announced.  The car, to be launched and given its track debut on Friday at Ferrari's headquarters, is named in tribute of the 150th anniversary of Italian unification.

"All the men and women who put so much effort and passion into their work at Maranello share the pride and responsibility of representing our country around the world and it is in this spirit that we chose to dedicate this car to an event that is so important for the whole of Italy," said Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo. More ...

01/25/11
nhra
Pregnancy forces Force Hood out in 2011  Two-time NHRA Nationals champion Ashley Force Hood will not race in the upcoming season after announcing she and husband, Dan, are expecting their first child.

The 28-year-old Force Hood said she is taking the 2011 season off to focus on motherhood and her new responsibilities as president of John Force Entertainment, a subsidiary of her father's racing company. She also plans to work with younger sister Courtney, who will be testing in funny cars in anticipation of a later pro debut.

Force Hood said she and Dan decided they would try to start a family after watching John Force clinch his 15th national championship last year.

01/25/11
tv news
Wallace back with ESPN  Champion NASCAR driver Rusty Wallace, ESPN's lead studio analyst for auto racing, has reached a new contract extension to remain with ESPN through the 2014 season, it was announced by Norby Williamson, ESPN executive vice president, production.

"Rusty Wallace is a NASCAR legend," Williamson said. "We're very happy that he will continue to share his knowledge and experience with our viewers for the remainder of our current relationship with NASCAR. It's a very strong property and we look forward to the next four years." More ...

01/25/11
irl
Fans to vote for greatest 33 Indy 500 drivers of all time  Indianapolis 500 fans worldwide have debated for decades about which drivers are the greatest in the race’s glorious history.

Now those voices will be heard and counted.

“The Greatest 33” fan interaction platform will give fans around the globe the opportunity to pick their dream all-time starting lineup of 33 drivers for the Indianapolis 500 online at thegreatest33.com from mid-March until early May. The top 33 drivers, based on fan input, will be announced in early May as “The Greatest 33.” More ...

01/25/11
f1
Team Lotus to do virtual launch  It has been confirmed that Team Lotus will reveal its 2011 challenger on the morning of Monday January 31, with an online launch taking place at 05:00 GMT. The new TL11 chassis will be unveiled via the 'Team Lotus Notes' service on the outfit’s website, enabling fans to view the car ahead of pre-season testing.

Lotus enjoyed a largely successful 2010 campaign, finishing as the highest placed new team in the championship. Technical Director Mike Gascoyne is confident that Lotus' latest design is a significant step forward from its T127 predecessor, and believes the longer build time will allow the squad to fight in the mid-field this year.

The opening pre-season test takes place at Valencia from February 1-3, with Lotus deciding to miss the first day in order to shakedown its car prior to its public debut. Heikki Kovalainen and Jarno Trulli will commence running on Wednesday 2, with both drivers getting a taste of the new car at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Spain.

01/25/11
racing news
Bobby Rahal Joins 'Pros 4 Vets' Athlete Lineup  
Always active in the community since his retirement as a championship-winning driver, three-time Indy Car and 1986 Indianapolis 500 champion Bobby Rahal is now pledging his support to a more nationwide cause.

Rahal has joined with Pros 4 Vets to lend his support to a national network of professionals that work to raise awareness of the issues faced by veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families. The Oklahoma-based organization brings together professionals from all fields, including athletes, musicians, lawyers and doctors, and has a roster of athletes that includes Super Bowl-winning coach Barry Switzer and NFL stars Roy Williams and Tommie Harris. More ...

01/25/11
f2
gp2
Jolyon Palmer graduates to GP2 with Arden  
2010 FIA Formula Two Championship runner-up Jolyon Palmer will graduate to GP2 for the forthcoming season after signing a deal to contest both the Asia and Main Series championships with Arden International.

Palmer's progression into GP2 follows an outstanding campaign in Formula Two in which he claimed five race wins and ten podiums, and remained in contention for the title until the final round of the year. He also recorded the most successful weekend of any driver, taking a superb two pole positions and two race wins at Monza in May.

Jolyon, who only recently turned 20, has previous experience of GP2 having joined the series' official winter tests at Abu Dhabi in November last year - where he impressed by regularly breaking into the top ten despite being one of the youngest drivers in the field. Arden meanwhile have a proud history in GP2, having won races in every year of the F1-feeder series’ history. More ...

01/25/11
f1
Q&A with Colin Kolles, Hispania F1 team  
Q:  As we are now nearing the first test of 2011, Can you give us some details about the car that the Team is using?
CK: The 2010 car will be utilized at the first tests, and as soon as the 2011 car is ready, we will implement it. The plan is to use the 2011 car at the Bahrain test. The 2011 car will be a completely new car, and will be called F111.

Q: The Spanish tests seem to be a very good opportunity for the Hispania Racing drivers to test the new tires. What is your opinion?
CK: Last year we didn´t have the opportunity to do the tests, and this new season we are able to give our drivers the opportunity to do more millage and to get used to the Pirelli tires. So, yes, the Spanish tests are very important for us. More ...

01/25/11
nassprint
Michael Waltrip will run Daytona 500  Michael Waltrip Racing and NAPA AUTO PARTS announced that two-time Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip will drive the #15 NAPA Toyota in his 25th consecutive Daytona 500 on Feb. 20. "This is a very special day," said Waltrip who unveiled the #15 NAPA paint scheme Tuesday morning during the annual Charlotte Motor Speedway media tour. "Ten years ago I won the 500 in my first race with NAPA and we know February 18, 2001 is a day that NASCAR fans will never forget. What looked to be a storybook ending turned to tragedy seconds later. To mark the 10th anniversary of that race and my 25th consecutive 500 will be quite emotional for me and fans alike." Waltrip broke a 0 for 462 streak when he won the 2001 Daytona 500 driving for car owner Dale Earnhardt who died in a turn four accident on the final lap. Waltrip chronicles the events of that weekend as well as his life and the challenges building a Sprint Cup organization in his book "In the Blink of an Eye" that goes on sale Feb. 1.
01/25/11
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Fox Sports chairman would like to see shorter races  Fox Sports chairman David Hill says he thinks NASCAR races are too long and would like to see them cut down to run during a three-hour window. Hill says Monday night that NASCAR recognizes it needs to make changes to stop its current slide in both attendance and television ratings. He says that NASCAR chairman Brian France is "really trying very hard" to find solutions, but nothing will happen overnight. Hill believes there are simply too many entertainment options to hold a fan's interest over the length of an entire race. Fox has three years remaining on its television deal with NASCAR, and Hill says it's too soon to tell if the network will renew. Associated Press/ESPN.com
01/25/11
nhra
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Kurt Busch making NHRA debut at Gainesville  Kurt Busch, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Dodge in the Sprint Cup Series, has announced that he will be making his NHRA Full Throttle Series debut at the 41st annual Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals, March 11-13, at historic Gainesville (Fla.) Raceway. He will be competing for one of the 16 qualifying spots in the ultra-competitive Pro Stock class in the Shell Dodge Avenger for Allen Johnson and J & J Racing. Busch spent a good part of his busy offseason testing with Allen Johnson and he earned his NHRA Pro Stock license with an impressive best-pass of 6.576 seconds at 210.43 mph at Bradenton, Fla. When Busch arrives in Gainesville for the 41st running of the Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals, he will get a total of four qualifying passes - two on Friday and two on Saturday - at which point the 16-car fields will be set for Sunday's race. NHRA
01/25/11
f1
Toro Rosso confident about Ferrari KERS  Toro Rosso will be using a Ferrari-made Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) in 2011, with the Faenza-based squad having not deployed the component when it was first present in Formula 1 two years ago.

‘We are fortunate in that we are using the Ferrari KERS system, which proved effective when they used it in 2009,’ reads an article on the Scuderia Toro Rosso team website. ‘The men from Maranello have a good knowledge of all the practical aspects of running the system.

‘In conjunction with Ferrari we are running a training program prior to testing, so that we do the maximum possible in order to ensure the highest level of safety for the guys and to make sure we deal adequately with the electrical side of the KERS.’ More ...

01/25/11
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usac
Shane Hmiel continues to recover  Shane Hmiel, who was paralyzed in October after being critically injured during qualifying for the U.S. Auto Racing Club's Silver Crown race in Indiana, has regained the use of his limbs and hopes to one day return to a race car. "That's all he wants to think about," said Hmiel's father, Steve, the managing director at Earnhardt Ganassi Racing. "In fact, when they put the eight-inch rod in his back the [doctors] made sure the rod was placed where he could sit in a race car comfortably." Shane Hmiel, who was banned for life from NASCAR in 2006 after failing three drug tests, has been undergoing rehabilitation in Shepherd Center in Atlanta since moving out of intensive care in Indianapolis Medical Hospital. His father said doctors are optimistic Shane will be able to walk with the aid of crutches or a walker within a year of the accident. According to his father, Shane Hmiel was given a 1-in-10 chance of surviving immediately after the accident, in which his No. 17 Silver Crown car slammed into the outside wall between the third and fourth turns at Terre Haute Action Track and then rolled several times. Steve said Shane, who has a six-inch plate in his neck and two eight-inch rods in his back, now has functions of all limbs. He is able to work at his computer, text and use a telephone. ESPN.com
01/25/11
motogp
MotoGP releases full 2011 entry list  MotoGP governing body the FIM has released the full, provisional entry list ahead of this year’s World Championship. At present, 17 riders are confirmed as Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo takes on bike number 1 for his title-defending season.

The (provisional) 2011 MotoGP line-up is as follows:

1 Jorge Lorenzo, Yamaha Factory Racing
4 Andrea Dovizioso, Repsol Honda Team
5 Colin Edwards, Monster Yamaha Tech 3
7 Hiroshi Aoyama, San Carlo Honda Gresini
8 Hector Barberá, Aspar Team
11 Ben Spies, Yamaha Factory Racing
14 Randy de Puniet, Pramac Racing Team
17 Karel Abraham, Cardion AB Motoracing
19 Álvaro Bautista, Rizla Suzuka MotoGP
24 Toni Elías, LCR Honda MotoGP
26 Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda Team
27 Casey Stoner, Repsol Honda Team
35 Cal Crutchlow, Monster Yamaha Tech 3
46 Valentino Rossi, Ducati Team
58 Marco Simoncelli, San Carlo Honda Gresini
65 Loris Capirossi, Pramac Racing Team
69 Nicky Hayden, Ducati Team
01/25/11
automotive
Video: Mercedes Automotive Museum  New start at the Mercedes-Benz Museum:  Fuel cells, electric and hybrid motors, super efficient combustion engines – 125 years after the invention of the motorcar the future is coming to the Mercedes-Benz Museum!

The ‘Legends 6’ room with its all-new exhibition, ‘New Start – the Road to Emission-free Mobility’, offers visitors fascinating answers on the technologies of tomorrow.

Start of Exhibition: January 30, 2011 More ...
01/25/11
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Tuesday  
  • Lotus dispute heading back to court after Bahrain
  • US GP set to receive digging permission
  • Return to top form for Schumacher 'impossible' - Prost
  • Fisichella involved in traffic crash in Italy
  • Pirelli wants newer F1 car for private tire testing
  • China fixing F1 track due to subsidence
  • Force India set for di Resta announcement on Wednesday
  • No new car for HRT until Bahrain - Karthikeyan More ...
01/24/11
automotive
GM to export $900 million in autos, parts to China  General Motors Co. says it plans to export $900 million in vehicles and parts to China under a two-year agreement signed with its flagship joint venture, Shanghai GM.

The company said in a release over the weekend that the agreement is among various trade and investment deals signed in connection with Chinese President Hu Jintao's state visit to the United States.

Vehicle exports will be worth $500 million and components worth $400 million under the agreement. The amount of GM's current exports, excluding the deal, was not immediately available.

01/24/11
f1
Mansell back on track with Lotus  
Colin Chapman (GBR) Team Owner Lotus chats with Nigel Mansell (GBR) Lotus. 1981 Formula One World Championship.
Mansell with early F1 mentor Colin Chapman
Nigel Mansell will return to the cockpit of a Lotus when he takes to the track in the Type 125 Formula 1 inspired customer race car at Yas Marina Circuit this week.  Lotus Motorsport are delighted to announce a new ambassador in the form of Nigel Mansell. Mansell will also complete the Type 125 test driver line-up as he joins fellow former F1 driver Jean Alesi and Lotus factory driver James Rossiter to put the F1 inspired customer race car through its paces at Yas Marina Circuit™ in Abu Dhabi this week. 

Nigel Mansell is no stranger to Lotus, over 30 years ago Lotus founder Colin Chapman spotted him when he was racing in F3 and signed him up as a development driver giving the future world champion his break into the sport. Mansell rejoins Lotus to take on another development role and, alongside Alesi and Rossiter, he will play a crucial role in ensuring that the Type 125 is the most enjoyable and challenging race car experience on the market. More ...

01/24/11
f1
Q&A with Lotus team manager Graham Watson  

Graham Watson
Q. It's the middle of January, the car's due to fire up soon... What's going on in your world?

GW. My world is very busy. Obviously with the car there are always ongoing things and it's a tight schedule up to the first test, plus there's always lots of production going on in the background.

From an operational side we're heavily into booking everything for the season; flights, hotels, hire cars and all the logistics of moving a Formula One™ team around the world! While we have to manage all of the personnel and car requirements, you have to think about all pieces and aspects of a team. For example, both our race trailers are away having modifications, so that's all going on as well! From a Race Team point of view, we've had a few additions to the crew, which I believe will strengthen the team and the new guys are familiarizing themselves with the current staff and fitting into the team. We have a new Number One Mechanic coming, which is great news. So yes, all in all, it's a pretty busy time, particularly this year. More ...

01/24/11
gp2
Fauzy joins Super Nova in GP2  Lotus Renault F1 test and reserve driver Fairuz Fauzy today confirmed it signed an agreement with GP2 team Super Nova Racing to compete for the team in the 2011 GP2 Asia and GP2 Series championship.

The 28 year old Malaysian racer is no stranger to the team, having driven the Super Nova car in the 2006 GP2 Series and then the 2008 GP2 Asia series, where he won a race on his way to fourth position in the championship. Since then Fairuz has continued to be successful, winning races in A1GP and Formula Renault 3.5 Series where he showed his consistency in 2009 by finishing second in the championship. More ...

01/24/11
racing news
Johnson named driver of the year by National Motorsports Press Association  Five-time defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson has been named the 2010 winner of the Richard Petty Driver of the Year award by the National Motorsports Press Association.

The announcement was made Sunday during the NMPA’s annual convention.

“I just wanted to thank the NMPA for this amazing award,” Johnson, who was not present, said in a segment videotaped and played during the luncheon. “To have won this title five times, and have the namesake of Richard Petty on this award is pretty, pretty amazing.” More ...

01/24/11
ga
Johnson, McMurray Hope to Join Foyt, Andretti In Elite Group  The names are magical. The accomplishment is legendary.

A.J. Foyt and Mario Andretti are the only drivers to win both the Rolex 24 At Daytona AND the Daytona 500.

This weekend, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers Jimmie Johnson and Jamie McMurray are looking to join that elite twosome.

Foyt won the Rolex 24 for the first time in 1983, 11 years after winning the Daytona 500 driving for the Wood Brothers in 1972. Foyt also won the Rolex 24 in 1985, in addition to finishing second in 1984 and 1986. More ...

01/24/11
irl
Winning bid of $225,000 secures drive of lifetime at 2011 Indy 500  Addison Brown, welcome to one of the best seats in the house for the 100th Anniversary Indianapolis 500.

Brown, from Scottsdale, Ariz., was the winning bidder at the Barrett-Jackson auction Saturday, Jan. 22 for the special-edition Chevrolet Camaro SS Convertible that will serve as the Official Pace Car for the 2011 Indianapolis 500. She has 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.

Chevrolet donated Brown's winning bid of $225,000 to the David Foster Foundation (http://www.davidfosterfoundation.org), 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 ...

01/24/11
f1
Team Lotus prevails in Summary Judgment by court  Team Lotus (formerly Lotus F1 Racing) is delighted that we were successful at the Summary Judgment Application hearing today and that the Judge threw out Group Lotus' application even before hearing the arguments of the barristers on either side.

Although this decision was never in doubt, it means that we start the 2011 season under the Team Lotus name. Whilst we expected that the Judge would refuse this application, it is good to have the decision in black and white.

The Judge also felt that it was in everyone's best interests to bring the hearing date for the full trial forward and that is now fixed for 21st March rather than us having to wait until Autumn 2011 or even later. We remain confident that we will succeed at the full trial and we can now focus on the challenges ahead in the 2011 FIA Formula One™ World Championship.

01/24/11
f1
Major repairs to start at Shanghai  
Turn 1 is one of the corners needing repair
Major repairs are set to start at the Shanghai International Circuit after subsidence was found at three of its turns, local officials have admitted.

Although there is no suggestion at this stage the Chinese Grand Prix on April 17 is under threat, the FIA's own website has added a precautionary "subject to the homologation of the circuit" against the race weekend on its website.

Work is expected to be finished by the end of March and the circuit will be examined by officials of the FIA before the race, Yang Yibin, manager of the organizers, told the Shanghai Daily. "There should be no problem. We've communicated well with the FIA, our plan has been approved and the grand prix will be on time." More ...

01/24/11
nnw
Alliance Truck Parts to Sponsor Hornish in Nationwide Series  Penske Racing announced today that Alliance Truck Parts, a leading provider of replacement parts for the commercial transportation industry, will be the primary sponsor of the No. 12 Dodge Challenger driven by Sam Hornish Jr. for the 2011 NASCAR Nationwide Series.
                                                                                     
Hornish raced the Alliance Truck Parts Dodge Charger in the 2010 Nationwide Series finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, and he is ready to compete for the team again this season.

Said Hornish, “It’s exciting to be able to return to the car and get a chance to represent the Alliance Truck Parts brand again this season. I know everyone at Penske Racing will be working hard to get the best results possible this year in the Nationwide Series.” More ...

01/24/11
nassprint
Penske Racing Welcomes Coca-Cola As Sponsor for Busch  Penske Racing’s Kurt Busch will join Coca-Cola’s family of NASCAR drivers this season. Coca-Cola will sponsor the 2004 Sprint Cup Series champion as Busch pursues his second series title while driving the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil machine in 2011.

Busch will carry the iconic Coca-Cola name on both his uniform and his Dodge Charger as he looks to extend his Cup Series victory streak to 10 consecutive seasons.

“I am honored to represent Coca-Cola during 2011 racing season,” said Busch, who scored two wins and two poles in 2010, finishing 11th in the final Cup Series standings. “We’re looking forward to a great season as we transition to the No. 22 car and it’s awesome to have Coca-Cola on board for the ride.” More ...

01/24/11
nassprint
Penske Racing Welcomes Kimberly-Clark and Wypall Brand in 2011  Penske Racing and Kimberly-Clark will begin a new partnership in 2011 as the Penske teams competing in NASCAR will assist in the promotion and marketing of one of the company’s top products, Wypall Wipers.

Kimberly-Clark, which includes such global brands as Kleenex, Scott and Huggies, and the Wypall brand, will become an associate sponsor of Penske Racing’s NASCAR teams beginning this season. All Penske Racing crew chiefs, in both the Cup Series and Nationwide Series, will wear the Wypall Wipers logo on their uniforms in 2011, promoting one of the toughest and most absorbent towels in the marketplace. More ...

01/24/11
irl
Act soon to buy 2011 Indy 500 general admission tickets at 2010 prices  Speed is essential for Indianapolis 500 teams, and it's also important for fans looking for a great value for "The Most Important Race in History" on Sunday, May 29 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Fans should visit www.imstix.com or the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Ticket Office before Feb. 1 to buy general admission tickets for the 2011 Indianapolis 500 race at 2010 prices.

Fans can purchase general admission tickets at last year's pricing levels through Jan. 31: Practice days, $5; Qualification days, $10; Miller Lite Carb Day, $10; Race Day, $20. More ...

01/24/11
irl
Entergy Nuclear Unites with HVM Racing for the 2011 season  
HVM paint scheme for Simona De Silvestro
HVM Racing and Entergy Nuclear announced in Baltimore today that they have entered into a three-year partnership to compete in the IZOD INDYCAR Series. This re-confirms the return of the 2010 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year, Simona De Silvestro as HVM Racing and Entergy team up to promote clean, low-cost and reliable nuclear energy.

Keith Wiggins, team owner of HVM Racing and John Herron, President, CEO and Chief Nuclear Officer at Entergy unveiled the new livery of the #78 Nuclear Clean Air Energy/ Entergy Dallara at the beautiful Intercontinental hotel in downtown Baltimore.

header

Also in attendance were INDYCAR CEO, Randy Bernard, and Jay Davidson, President of the Baltimore Grand Prix. Professionals from the nuclear energy industry were side-by-side to witness the announcement while fans were welcome to view a pit stop demonstration performed by De Silvestro and her experienced HVM pit crew at nearby Camden Yards. More ...

01/24/11
f1
Lawyer doubts Lotus name dispute to end soon  (GMM) A specialist lawyer has played down hopes the Lotus naming dispute might be settled this week.

A short time ago on Monday afternoon, the initial hearings kicked off inside London's High Court.

A lawyer for Group Lotus will summarize the Proton-owned marque's application for a summary judgment against Team Lotus' right to use the 'Lotus' name for its team.

"Many (people are) confused about (the) case today," Team Lotus boss Tony Fernandes wrote on Twitter. "It's not about (the) Team Lotus name (and) who owns it, which is in November."

He explained that Monday's events centre only on Group Lotus' argument that it had the power to revoke the Lotus Racing naming license, with Fernandes and his lawyers insisting that termination was "unlawful". More ...

01/24/11
nassprint
DEWALT to sponsor Ambrose at Petty Team  Today, DEWALT announces its agreement with Richard Petty Motorsports to sponsor Marcos Ambrose, driver of the No. 9 Ford Fusion, for the 2011/2012 NASCAR season. The No. 9 car will brandish the DEWALT logo, which will alternate between the hood and quarter-panel during each race of the 2011/2012 Sprint Cup season.

"DEWALT is well-positioned to re-enter the sport and partner with Richard Petty Motorsports to sponsor Marcos Ambrose for the 2011/2012 season," said Jon Howland, director of brand marketing, DEWALT. "We value the opportunity to engage with our end-users through this platform, and we feel that Richard Petty, a NASCAR Hall of Famer and seven-time NASCAR Cup champion, and his race team, will represent our brand well." More ...
01/24/11
nnw
Nationwide Series scoring revealed  According to NASCAR officials, the only drivers who will receive points in Nationwide Series races will be those eligible for the series championship. Full-time Sprint Cup drivers running for that title are de facto ineligible. The top Nationwide driver, however, won't receive first-place points unless he or she wins the race. In other words, if Justin Allgaier runs fourth behind Cup drivers Tony Stewart, Carl Edwards and Kevin Harvick -a s was the case in last year's season-opening Nationwide race at Daytona International Speedway - Allgaier will receive fourth-place points and money. NASCAR announced Friday that drivers had to select the one championship they'll seek before the start of the season, unlike in years past when they were eligible for championships in all series. Sporting News
01/24/11
racing news
Racing Electronics Adds HANS to Product & Service Lineup  Racing Electronics announced the addition of HANS Performance Products to its industry-leading list of products and service. "Becoming a full-line HANS dealer will allow us to truly be a one-stop-shop for the competitor," said Kevin Hughes, Director of Motorsports Services for Racing Electronics. "We pride ourselves in providing industry-leading customer sales and service. We will now be able to provide factory-trained HANS sales and service to all of our customers, regardless of series or style of racing." For more information on Racing Electronics, please call the showroom toll-free at 1-800-272-7111 and visit them on the web at www.racingelectronics.com.(NCMA)
01/24/11
nassprint
Minor Roush re-organization  Chip Bolin, who formerly worked as the race engineer for Matt Kenseth's #17 team -- including a stint as the crew chief -- took over the Roush Fenway Racing engineering leadership role from Chris Andrews during Preseason Thunder. Heading into the 2010 season, the engineering department used a two-headed approach, with veteran RFR man Andrews heading the race engineering and race simulation section and Tommy Wheeler overseeing the chassis development and fabrication section. In the offseason Andrews, who has experience as a Cup crew chief, was named crew chief for newcomer Trevor Bayne's RFR Nationwide Series program NASCAR.com
01/24/11
lmes
alms
Audi confirms driver line-up for new Audi R18  Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich has managed to sign all nine drivers who mounted the podium after last year’s historical one-two-three Audi finish in the 24 Hours of Le Mans for Le Mans in 2011. The drivers who compete for the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup (ILMC) for Audi are also confirmed.

"Over the last few years we’ve had a very strong and harmonious driver line-up at Le Mans," says Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. "Any one of our three cars could have won, which explains why it was our aim to compete with an unchanged driver squad at Le Mans in 2011. I’m delighted that we achieved this. Now we can concentrate solely on the development of the Audi R18 and need not integrate any new drivers into the team, which would have been associated with additional work and risks. The schedule to Le Mans is tight enough as it is." More ...
01/24/11
irl
Air Force video of IndyCar troop tour  There’s a handful of people who live life in the fast lane, Mario Andretti is one of them. Mario and seven other Indy 500 drivers made a pit stop at Ramstein Air Base to say thanks.  See video made by the Air Force on our Home page above photos of the week.
01/24/11
IRC Rally
Bouffier charges to Monaco win  
Bryan Bouffier (right) took a huge win when he claimed victory at the IRC Rally Monte Carlo over some serious competition

Bryan Bouffier had never even scored an Intercontinental Rally Challenge point before the 2011 Rally Monte Carlo, but the Frenchman was consistent, confident and dominant and topped the podium at the end of the event.

It was a great tire choice that gave Bouffier the lead as he took charge on the only two snow-affected stages, after which he drove brilliantly to maintain his position until the end. It had been Jan Kopeckey that was dominating the rally earlier on, but a poor tire choice by him dropped him down the order, leaving it up to Bouffier to win or lose for himself. More ...

01/24/11
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Monday  
  • Will Schumacher make Nico Rosberg (above) eat those words?
    Rosberg does not fear Vettel or Schumacher
  • Kobayashi to debut new Sauber on January 31
  • 'Honest' Sutil is among best in F1 - Szafnauer
  • Webber should have kept injury secret - Briatore
  • Race boss Walker scolds mayor for Aus GP criticism
  • India GP boss quits to work in Abu Dhabi

Rosberg does not fear Vettel or Schumacher
(GMM)  Sporting a new look for 2011, Nico Rosberg has declared he has no fear of F1's world champions.

"Where (Sebastian) Vettel is now?  I'll get there," the Mercedes driver, referring to his German countryman and F1's new reigning champion, told Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

Rosberg was speaking with a new short haircut and a stubble beard. More ...

01/24/11
automotive
GM Delivers 8.39 Million Vehicles Globally in 2010  General Motors reported today that it delivered 8,389,769 vehicles globally in calendar year 2010, a 12.2 percent increase from 2009 deliveries of 7,477,178.

GM achieved double-digit increases in five of its top 10 markets, including a 28.8 percent increase in China, where GM and its partners2 were the first to top the 2 million sales mark in a single year, and an increase of 41.3 percent in Uzbekistan, which is now GM’s tenth-largest market by volume.

Deliveries in the United States, GM’s No. 2 market, rose 6.3 percent despite the phase-out or sale of four brands, while Brazil, GM’s third-largest market, saw deliveries rise by 10.4 percent. More ...
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