PETA asks for space on Earnhardt, Jr.'s #88 It's been wildly reported that Dale Earnhardt Jr. is still looking for some sponsors. In fact, Hendrick Motorsports, Earnhardt's team, has yet to find sponsorship for 13 Sprint Cup races (although with an owner that just spent a million on a Corvette, it's unlikely Earnhardt Jr. is going to miss any races). Anyway, apparently the folks over at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals heard about the open space on Earnhardt Jr.'s car. And they want some of it...for free.
SANY America sponsoring Blaney for 14 races Tommy Baldwin has been gradually building his race team since 2009. He's endured a fledgling economy and has managed to maintain a presence in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Now, he's seeing his patience and hard work pay off. Tommy Baldwin Racing announced that the building continues, as they introduce SANY America to NASCAR as a major sponsorship partner for 2013. With Dave Blaney at the wheel, SANY America will serve as the primary sponsor on the #7 Chevy for 14 Sprint Cup Series events and associate partner for 22 races, starting with the Subway Fresh Fit 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on March 3rd.
Audi may someday compete in DP class Audi could enter the Daytona Prototype class or its successor once Grand-Am and the American Le Mans Series merge for 2014.
Head of Audi Sport Wolfgang Ullrich explained to Autosport that racing with the R8 GRAND-AM, which is now in its second-year in Grand-Am's GT category, would likely be only one arm of the manufacturer's U.S. racing program in the future.
Former NFL player becomes minority owner of Swan Racing Bill Romanowski, who played 16 seasons in the NFL, has signed on as a minority-owner of Swan Racing, a fulltime competitor in the Sprint Cup Series. The retired NFL star joins forces with upstart team owner Brandon Davis, who is leading Swan into its first full racing season. Romanowski's health supplement company, Nutrition53, also signed on as a team sponsor and will be the primary sponsor for ten races on the #30 Toyota driven by David Stremme. Nutrition53 will have an associate sponsor position on the car for the other 26 races.
Jimmie Johnson To Compete In Nationwide Series Race at Phoenix Five-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson will compete in the March 2 Nationwide Series race at Phoenix International Raceway for JR Motorsports, general manager Kelley Earnhardt Miller announced today.
Johnson will drive the No. 5 Great Clips Chevrolet in the Bashas’ Supermarkets 200 (4:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2). This will mark Johnson’s first Nationwide Series race since finishing second in a JR Motorsports car at Watkins Glen International on Aug. 13, 2011. Johnson is a four-time winner at Phoenix in the Sprint Cup Series, where he drives the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports.
“I appreciate Junior letting me run one of his cars,” said Johnson of his Hendrick Motorsports teammate and JR Motorsports owner Dale Earnhardt Jr. “My goal is to make my team owner so proud that, perhaps, he’ll invite me back more often than once every two years.
Daytona Int'l Speedway Could See Florida Tax Break For Proposed Renovations Florida legislators this spring will consider bills that “may include a request for a tax break for proposed renovations" at Daytona Int'l Speedway, according to Dinah Voyles Pulver of the Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL. Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford yesterday said that he “expects tax break bills" for DIS, EverBank Field and a proposed MLS arena in Orlando. Legislators “already have filed a bill to give a tax break” for Sun Life Stadium. DIS earlier this month unveiled conceptual renderings for renovations at the 54-year-old facility that "could include replacing the grandstand seating, upgrading concession areas and adding five new entrances.”
ISC is “expected to vote on the proposed multiyear redevelopment later this year.” DIS President Joie Chitwood said DIS plans to sit down with legislators to explain "in more detail what we think the redevelopment is going to entail and tell them how important we think it will be to Central Florida and our community.” Chitwood added, “We definitely want to make sure all the right people know what we’re doing.” State Rep. Dwayne Taylor said that it “only makes sense the Speedway and Jaguars stadium would be included with the Dolphins in petitioning legislators for money.” Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL
Risi Competizione announce Beretta and Malucelli for 2013 ALMS Shortly after the announcement that North America’s most successful Ferrari GT team would be returning to competition in the 2013 American Le Mans Series, Houston-based Risi Competizione is pleased to announce its driver line up.
Ferrari Corse Clienti’s five-time ALMS GTS/GT1 champion Olivier Beretta, a name which needs no introduction to ALMS fans and audiences, will be joined for the season by former Italian GT Champion and 2008 FIA GT vice-champion, Matteo Malucelli. The 28-year-old Italian will be making his debut in the series but has considerable expertise behind the wheel of many different GT marques including Ferrari.
MR02 to be seen for the first time in Jerez The Marussia F1 Team MR02 will be unveiled at the opening pre-season test at the Circuito de Jerez in Spain.
The new car will be revealed to accredited media in the pit lane at 08.15hrs CET on Tuesday 5 February.
2013 F1 launch dates:
Lotus - Monday 28 January McLaren - Thursday 31 January Force India - Friday 1 February Ferrari - Friday 1 February Sauber - Saturday 2 February Red Bull - Sunday 3 February Mercedes - Monday 4 February Toro Rosso - Monday 4 February Caterham - Tuesday 5 February Marussia - Tuesday 5 February Williams - Tuesday 19 February
Auto GP unveils upgraded 2013 car The start of the 2013 Auto GP season brought some fresh news for the open-wheel series managed by Enzo Coloni. After the recently-announced deals for Kimiya Sato, Riccardo Agostini and Andrea Roda, the championship is poised to deliver the latest photos of its 2013 racecar, an evolution of the design tested on-track last December at Barcelona. While the first test model lowered the 2012 version's lap times by 1.2 seconds per lap (with an estimated 1.5-second improvement) the latest evolution will push that gap to 2 seconds per lap, bringing Auto GP to the same performance level of the World Series Renault 3.5 and the GP2 Series.
Inductees to 2013 NASCAR Hall of Fame Whether for their contributions as NASCAR pioneers or their feisty, fan-captivating prowess and personality behind the wheel, each member of the 2013 NASCAR Hall of Fame class is unique in his own right.
SPEED shines a spotlight on Hall of Fame inductees Buck Baker, Herb Thomas, Cotton Owens, Rusty Wallace and Leonard Wood in a one-hour biography special premiering Feb. 2 at 9 p.m. ET in a lead-up to the network’s live coverage of the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony Feb. 8 at 7:30 p.m. ET.
Honda and Acura integrate iPhone Siri American Honda today announced it will integrate support for Siri, the intelligent assistant that helps you get things done just by asking, into its 2013 Honda Accord and Acura RDX and ILX models as a dealer installed option. Later this year, owners with a compatible iPhone1 running iOS 6can direct Siri to perform a number of specific tasks while they safely keep their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel. Using Eyes Free mode, Siri takes hands-free functionality even further and minimizes distractions even more by keeping your iOS device's screen from lighting up.
Sky Deutschland Extends F1 Media Rights Deal Until '15 German pay-TV network Sky Deutschland "will continue to broadcast F1 racing until '15," according to Manuel Weis of QUOTEN METER. Sky has extended its TV rights deal with Formula One Management for another three years. Sky Deutschland Chief Officer Sports, Advertising Sales & Internet Carsten Schmidt said, "Following Sebastian Vettel's world championship hat trick, Sky delivers another three pack to the joy of F1 fans. With the extension of our long-standing partnership until 2015, fans will be able to continue to watch the complete grand prix weekend live and in HD on Sky." The fact that Sky extended its F1 media rights for three years is a positive sign -- previously the pay-TV network always signed one-year deals. Sky will once again show all practice sessions, qualifying sessions and races live and in HD. Quoten Meter
Nurburgring Will Host '13 German F1 Grand Prix; Ecclestone, Track Operators Reach DealUPDATE The PA's Ian Parkes reported Ecclestone had to overcome "political in-fighting" to get the deal done. On two occasions this month, Ecclestone has said that the race "will not be held at the Nürburgring because of financial issues." The fall-back position was for Hockenheim to play host this year, but according to Ecclestone, "therein lies further difficulty." The two circuits come under the auspices of different automobile associations in Germany, which "pride themselves on staging a race known as the German Grand Prix."
Ecclestone said, "It's all a little bit political, with different political groups fighting each other." He added: "We've said to them we don't have to call it the German Grand Prix this year, we can call it the Grand Prix of Europe. It's all a bit messy. At the moment the race is on-off, on-off, but we're doing our best to get it sorted." PA
Winning titles nothing new for Panther Racing's NFL connection Jim Harbaugh may be in search of his first NFL championship, but the San Francisco 49ers coach has already won three INDYCAR championships as co-owner of Panther Racing.
Panther Racing won the IZOD IndyCar Series titles with Sam Hornish Jr. in 2001 and 2002 and the Firestone Indy Lights title in 2003 with Mark Taylor. All three title-winning cars carried the No. 4, the same number Harbaugh wore when he was quarterback of the Indianapolis Colts.
"Jim has always been a tremendous leader and I've said several times he's the ultimate warrior," Panther Racing team managing partner John Barnes said. "I can't think of another family that deserves this honor as much as the Harbaughs - Jim, John and (father) Jack have all been big mentors of mine for a long time.
Roush Fenway Racing and Valvoline, a brand of Ashland Inc. (NYSE: ASH), have announced the extension of their long-running and equally successful NASCAR partnership. The relationship, which spans over a decade and a half, pairs two elite organizations with long histories of automotive performance excellence. RFR will continue to use Valvoline’s revolutionary NextGen recycled, re-refined motor oil, which last season helped the team to a win in the famed Daytona 500 and its second consecutive NASCAR Nationwide Series Championship.
Alliance Truck Parts Extends Penske Racing Relationship After a strong second season as a primary sponsor of the No. 12 car in NASCAR Nationwide Series (NNS) competition, Alliance Truck Parts announced today that it is extending its partnership with Penske Racing.
As part of the multi-year extension agreement, Alliance Truck Parts will serve as a primary sponsor of the No. 12 Ford Mustang driven once again this season by Sam Hornish Jr. in the Nationwide Series. Alliance Truck Parts will be a primary sponsor of the No. 12 entry for 17 races in 2013 and will be an associate sponsor on the car for the balance of the NNS races this season.
Rondeau Named Director of Competition at Furniture Row Racing
Pete Rondeau, who has been affiliated with Furniture Row Racing since the 2010 season, has been elevated to the competition director position for the NASCAR Sprint Cup team.
Rondeau initially joined the Denver-based Furniture Row Racing as the team’s car chief. He assumed the crew chief role in May 2010 and served in that capacity until July 2012.
In his new position as competition director, Rondeau will be the point person at the Denver race shop with the building and preparation of the team’s No. 78 Chevrolets which will be driven by former NASCAR champion Kurt Busch.
Former NASCAR team employee pleads guilty to embezzlement A 62-year-old Summerfield woman accused of embezzling more than $300,000 from Bill Davis Racing entered a plea deal in Guilford County Superior Court today. Anne Winner, who had worked as a business manager at a division of the company for two years, pleaded guilty to six counts of embezzlement and one count of obtaining property under false pretenses. Judge John O. Craig III gave her a sentence of four to five months in prison for one of the embezzlement counts and six consecutive suspended sentences of six to eight months each for the other charges. She was also ordered to pay $100,000 to her former employer, $75,000 of which she has already paid. Based in High Point, Bill Davis Racing fielded cars in NASCAR's top three series until 2009. News Record
Lamborghini announces commitment to GT3 program with Reiter Engineering
Lamborghini Gallardo GT3
Automobili Lamborghini has announced a new GT3 motorsport program. The long-term agreement will commence with a new car for the 2013 and 2014 seasons: the Lamborghini Gallardo GT3 FL2, developed by Reiter Engineering in cooperation with Lamborghini's R&D motorsport department.
Based on the new Gallardo MY13, a focus of the new GT3 FL2's development is on long-distance performance and includes '24-hour' brakes, improved engine cooling and reduced fuel consumption. The car features a highly efficient aero kit, a new front splitter, a rear carbon diffuser based on that developed for the Super Trofeo and an overall improved power to weight performance, with the GT3 FL2's weight reduced by 25kg over the previous Gallardo GT3.
Pedro de la Rosa’s first appearance as a Ferrari man
Pedro de la Rosa
Tuesday was Pedro de la Rosa’s first appearance as a Ferrari man, when, along with the head of the FDA, Luca Baldisserri, he attended the fourth edition of the “Beca Santander Jovenes Promesas” ceremony, organized by one of Scuderia Ferrari’s most important sponsors. With a broad smile on his face and a Ferrari fleece on his back, the Spaniard dealt with questions from the press at the event, who were very interested in his first impressions of his new role.
Current NASCAR sponsorship costs Most of today’s racing fans are too young to remember the days when moonshiners souped up their Chevys and Fords to outrun the cops, their hot pursuits on the back roads giving birth to Nascar in 1948. But there is one thing that fans miss about the old days: Those Chevys and Fords actually looked like Chevys and Fords. In a standardization process culminating in 2007’s "Car of Tomorrow," NASCAR’s cars had evolved to all look the same.
Which is why fans stood up and cheered in November when Nascar, popping the clutch in reverse, announced a return to brand-specific body styles. Come the 2013 Sprint Cup Series, the "Gen-6" cars—the Ford Fusion, Toyota Camry and Chevy SS—will look like the models you can buy in showrooms. Says Nascar CMO Steve Phelps: “The idea is to put the ‘stock’ back into stock-car racing.”
Herta's son to Race Pacific Formula F for PR1 Motorsports
Herta will be contesting the #98 PR1 Motorsports/ BHA/Curb Agajanian entry in the 2013 Pacific Formula F Super Series Championship
PR1 Motorsports' proud heritage of developing young promising talent continues this year with the signing of 12-year-old Colton Herta to the team's expanding Pacific Formula F program. Herta will join a long list of accomplished alumni drivers from the PR1 family including notable IndyCar drivers J.R. Hildebrand and Charlie Kimball. As the son of Bryan Herta, the race-winning IndyCar driver and Indianapolis 500 winning team owner, the young open wheel prodigy already has a wealth of on-track experience having been behind the wheel since he was six years old. Current career highlights include multiple wins and championships in karting's brutally competitive SKUSA Pro Tour and the IKF series. Herta also represented the United States last year in the Rok World finals against 68 other drivers from 42 countries, finishing seventh in the final. To prepare for the 2013 season, Herta has already made the jump from karts to cars utilizing the Skip Barber Championship as his stepping stone. Within his first six car races, the Valencia, CA native has already picked up where he left off in karts, scoring two podium finishes and currently fourth in points against drivers nearly twice his age.
One-Day Truck Show At Rockingham When the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series makes its return to Rockingham Speedway for the Carolina 200 presented by Cheerwine in April, the field for the second event at the venerable one-mile track will not be set until morning of the race.
Qualifying for the race will be held at 11 a.m. on Sunday, April 14. The green flag is scheduled to drop at 2 p.m. for the 200-lap race.
“Qualifying and racing on the same day gives fans more value for their race ticket,” said Rockingham Speedway President Andy Hillenburg. “It also builds some excitement among the drivers and fans if everyone wakes up on Sunday morning not knowing where the trucks will start come 2 o’clock.”
TrackScan no longer allowed at ISC owned tracks TrackScan customers received this letter:
We unfortunately must inform you, our loyal customers and friends, that Track Scan has been notified that we will not be granted access to support you at the International Speedway Corporation facilities during the 2013 Season.
Americrown Service Corporation, with the approval of International Speedway Corporation (ISC), has notified us of their decision to enter into an exclusive agreement with another scanner vendor. While they have enjoyed a successful working relationship with Track Scan, Americrown considered factors unique to their business and strategy, and believe this exclusive agreement to be in their best interests.
Rusty Wallace Racing returns Rusty Wallace Racing, which closed its doors because of a lack of sponsorship prior to the 2012 season, hopes to compete in 10-15 Nationwide Series races in 2013 with driver Steve Wallace.
Steve Wallace, son of soon-to-be NASCAR Hall-of-Famer Rusty Wallace, will have sponsorship from the mortgage and real-estate firm Richard Tocado Companies. His first race in the No. 66 Ford will be in May at Charlotte. Wallace has six career top-five finishes in 192 career Nationwide starts.
Engineer Matt Barnes Talks About Ed Carpenter Racing's 2012 Season and 2013 Program
Lead Engineer Barnes Talks About His Ed Carpenter Racing Team’s Off-Season Programs
QUESTION: Matt, what things did you learn as you became a lead engineer at Ed Carpenter Racing?
BARNES: It was a bit of a transition. I was sort of thrown into the lead role right at Indy. And that is the most stressful place you can start with the month of May. The one thing I did learn was how strong the team is and it’s not about one person. The whole team pulled together and everyone rallied behind me. That is something that wouldn’t happen at a lot of places. So we didn’t have immediate success. That is for sure. As the season went on, our team did get stronger. And we did score a win in the last race. But what was lost in the season a little was that we had some really good races that got away from us for one reason or another. We might have had a couple of other wins. We drove to the front at Texas, Milwaukee and Iowa. The situations didn’t work for us. Ed and the car were stronger than our results. Unfortunately, we passed the leader many times to get our lap back. If we would have been on the lead lap, we would have had a shot at the front of the field too.
QUESTION: As the season went on, did you feel more confident in yourself as the lead engineer and was it a big learning curve for you too?
BARNES: Certainly, it was learning curve for me. Whenever you are an assistant coach, assistant manager or assistant engineer, there comes to a point in time when you are ready to take the next step and move to higher position. And I felt that way for a while. So when I received that opportunity, I certainly wasn’t afraid of it. So I felt I had something to prove and approached every weekend like that. I knew it was a ‘season-long job interview’ through the season. So I didn’t worry too much about the things I couldn’t control. Just worried about the things I knew. I put in a maximum effort and, in the end, the results were good. Ed and I built a good relationship and worked well together as the season went on. And it culminated with the Fontana win. I think that proved to myself and some other people that I was capable of doing the job.
QUESTION: Did you feel that Ed was getting confident in your abilities as the season developed?
BARNES: Every driver/engineer relationship has to be developed over time. An established, “rock star” engineer takes time to work with a new driver and develop a relationship. You have to convince the driver you know what you are doing and how to understand his or her needs. Even if you have the history, you have to prove it to each person you work with. You have to have the driver’s confidence and what you are say to them. You have to understand through his words how he is feeling in the car. Likewise, the driver had to understand why the engineer is doing something to improve the car or how the end results are going to play out. We might try three different things and maybe all of them work or none of them work. But he has to be patient and believe in what we are doing.
Matt Barnes talks to his engineering staff
QUESTION: During the season, Ed (Carpenter, team owner and driver) is more of the driver than a team owner. But is there a situation where you need him to think as a team owner too?
BARNES: I never felt that there was a conflict. I always dealt with Ed as the driver. I never held anything back if I felt he needed to do something. I told him what he needed to do and didn’t say, ‘Oh, I better not say that since he is the owner too.’ I know, whether Ed is being the owner or the driver, he wants us to do the best we can. I don’t ever feel I can’t say something to him about the driver or the team. I know if I made a mistake that I was ready to admit to him. Likewise, he took responsibility from his side. The off-season might be a different story. I think conflict is more within himself. As the driver, Ed wants to go as fast as he can. He wants the car as fast as it can be. But we have to make decisions on what our budget allows. So as the owner, Ed understands how we work to make the best plans of the money available. Ed, as the owner, has to draw the line to where the budget is for our team. Ed, the owner, has to deal with the realities of a budget. Every driver wants to go faster and wants an unlimited budget. But limiting that budget for a team is the owner’s responsibility.
QUESTION: Right after the final race of the season, do you formulate a plan for the off-season and a direction you work on in preparation for 2013?
BARNES: As soon as the checkered flag falls at Fontana, we begin thinking about the off-season plans. So we came back to Indy and started work immediately on our off-season program. For the first couple of weeks, I began developing a budget and then went to Ed, Derrick (Walker) and Tim (Broyles) to see what we could do for the 2013 program. We had to negotiate on what the budget would be. Then you go forward with the off-season. We were very fortunate to move right into our development mode. We didn’t have to wait to know if we were going to get a sponsor or the budget. We have all been the waiting mode before to see if the sponsor would on board for the team. The longer you wait you just can’t get everything together. So, with Fuzzy’s Vodka, we have a great sponsor to make things happen for us. We were able to do some seven-post tests in October and November and then go testing in December with the car.
QUESTION: How was it for you as a leader of your engineer department? You had to hire some people too?
BARNES: It was definitely a new responsibility. But it was one that I really enjoyed. It is nice to pick the people that are around you. It is great to have a strong person next to me like Woody (Brent Harvey) in our engineering department. He is our core person in our engineering department. So to add to our staff and bring people in is a great opportunity. And we were able to get a good, young guy in Ben Siegel to come in this winter. He has experience and works well with us. We were able to scout around in the off-season for someone good to come in. It wasn’t a rush where we need someone in a week or so. We needed the right guy and we took our time finding him. We were able to pick up Ben right after the season ended and he has been a very good addition.
QUESTION: Last year was different for ECR as an all-new team with new crew, engineers and new equipment. What has this off-season been like with a solid start?
BARNES: There was a lot of uncertainty last year as we waited for an engine deal and getting the proper crew and equipment. And then when we got the Chevrolet engine deal, we didn’t know what the support would be like. This year we know what Chevy and Pratt & Miller will provide to assist us. It is a much better situation for ECR now. We have a much better view of the whole puzzle and what pieces they contribute. So we feel good about the program we have put together for 2013. It is a good opportunity for us as we know the direction we can go with to move forward.
QUESTION: You have worked with multi-car teams before and ECR has just the one car right now. Do you feel a lot pressure to get things just right with not having another team to bounce things around for extra information?
BARNES: When I came to ECR, there was a brand new IndyCar chassis with the DW-12. So I had to pretty much start from scratch. There wasn’t much to carry over from the previous car. My experiences from the past helped a little in shaping the direction we went in 2012. But it does put a lot more pressure on myself and the engineering staff as well as Ed with the one-car effort. We aren’t able to fall back on a setup that a teammate might be running or has already tried. It is more difficult on Ed because he had to sort the car out and doesn’t have the opportunity to sit down with a teammate or teammates to figure out. So that trust between Ed and myself has to be strong to develop our setups and the programs. There is no other frame of reference to go from, so he must give me his best feedback. We only have Ed for the information. It’s more difficult than a multi-car team where Ed could get others’ input. The other side of it is that we don’t have the data to compare with a teammate. We are doing our own experimenting at times. Say like Texas, we can only accomplishment a certain amount of things in a short time. Where a bigger team can have each driver try selected things and they come back to the trailer and sort them out. We just don’t have that luxury. But also, sometimes the multi-car teams don’t always work as a team too and get crossed up. It is a little idealistic that the big teams always try things that work too. Sometimes they can get lost trying too many things.
QUESTION: What is the toughest part of your job?
BARNES: For me right now, it is maximizing my time and our engineering staff’s time. We are a small group and everyone has to pull their own weight. It’s easy to get behind in your work. We don’t have the engineering staff of a Penske, Ganassi or Andretti. We are trying to develop as much work as those big teams. They have 10, 15 or 20 people in engineering. Whether you are developing the work for a four-car team or one-car team, the work is basically the same. We plan to do the same amount of testing and development work, but we are splitting it up between three people versus ten. We have to send guys off on their own to do projects that other teams would have several people on the one project. But one example last year that went well is that we had an on-track test at Mid-Ohio and a wind tunnel test on the same day at another site. Even with a small group, we were able to split up and do good work.
SPM becomes Two-Car IndyCar effort for 2013 with addition of Tristan Vautier
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (SPM) will expand to a two-car IZOD IndyCar Series operation for the 2013 race season with reigning Firestone Indy Lights champion Tristan Vautier at the wheel of the second entry.
The 23-year-old Frenchman from Corenc, France, will join fellow countryman and 2012 Sunoco Rookie of the Year Simon Pagenaud, driver of the #77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton HP Motorsports IZOD IndyCar Series entry.
With the successes of the 2012 season proving that the Schmidt Peterson and Vautier combination was a winner, it was only natural that the two continue to grow together in 2013.
Gomes claims inaugural INDYCAR Academy shootout Aspiring racers hope to reach the IZOD IndyCar Series and the Indianapolis 500 via the Mazda Road to Indy developmental program, which encompasses the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship, Pro Mazda Championship and Firestone Indy Lights.
Andre Gomes hopes to follow that path.
Gomes, a 25-year-old computer technician from Nashua, N.H., won the inaugural Skip Barber Racing School INDYCAR Academy shootout last weekend at Sebring International Raceway.
He receives a sponsored ride in either the 2013 summer Skip Barber Regional Race Series presented by Mazda or the 2013 winter series. IZOD IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights team owner Bryan Herta also announced that the winner will be given a hospitality and garage pass for the Indianapolis 500, including a chance to be with the No. 98 Barracuda Racing car on the starting grid.
"It Protects My Head" - Kimi Raikkonen Reveals 2013 Helmet Design
Long-time trusted friend Uffe Tagtstrom has been designing Kimi’s helmets since his karting days, so we caught up with him to find out what really goes on inside - or in this case outside - the Iceman’s head...
Although the driver is very much involved in the design process, when it comes to the Iceman things are typically mysterious when it comes to his head gear:
"Usually Kimi gives a hint of what should be on his helmet for the season ahead. I’ll then make five different versions of the idea with the computer and he picks what he likes the most" Uffe explains.
"Last year he wanted to have his race number up there. He had the number previously during the McLaren times, but then it was at the back of the helmet. Now the number will change from 9 to 7, but there isn’t that much of change for 2013; just some new partners."
Rolex 24 gets bump in TV rating from younger fans According to Nielsen Media Research, SPEED coverage of the Rolex 24 at Daytona scored a Household Rating increase of 9% (0.37 vs. 0.34) and 82% among M18-49 (0.31 vs. 0.17) compared to last year’s event. It was the highest-rated Rolex Sports Car Series race on SPEED among M18-49 in six years, averaging 388,000 viewers and peaking at nearly 750,000 viewers on Sunday.
Lotus reserve driver Jerome D’Ambrosio says he is ‘very pleased’ to be continuing his role with the Enstone-based team this season, and aims to use the year ahead to improve his chances of returning to a race seat in the future.
After contesting the 2011 campaign for Marussia Virgin Racing, the Belgian joined Lotus as its reserve in 2012, and will continue to form part of the line-up in 2013.
"I’m very pleased to be continuing my relationship with Lotus F1 Team," the 27-year-old explained. "Of course, consistency is a huge plus for any Formula 1 team, so I’m happy that I am in a position to be able to contribute to the team’s progression."
IHRA sold IHRA Entertainment, LLC, a newly formed corporation held by the ownership group of Palm Beach International Raceway™ and Memphis International Raceway™, announced today its acquisition of the International Hot Rod Association (IHRA), which was majority-owned by Feld Motor Sports®, a division of Feld Entertainment, Inc. The new ownership group will immediately take over management of the 43 year old organization and operate as IHRA Motorsports.
The acquisition includes 100 percent of the IHRA assets, including the sanctioning body, the Nitro Jam® series, the Thunder Jam series, the Summit Pro Am series, the Summit® Super Series program and Drag Review Magazine.
Readers disagree with Cox articleUPDATE #2 I'd like to comment on my colleague Stephen Cox's article. To begin, Cox did an excellent job establishing a premise no one can disagree with: Duno, Dr. Jack, Roth, Hattori, Vitolo, et al did in fact qualify. You may not like it, I certainly do not, but they did meet whatever the minimum standard was for the races they participated in. Further, as racers, albeit not terribly skilled ones, you cannot blame them. The reader who wrote in about Vitas Geraulitis made this point. He was by no means up to Vitas' standard, but when given the opportunity to play against one of the world's best, he jumped at it. However, as the reader also pointed out in tennis all that can really happen is a weaker player gets their behind kicked. In racing the stakes are different. That is why sanctioning bodies must do a better job creating minimum standards for those who race. Duno, Roth, Hattori and the bunch are simply people who want to race, and Cox is right: don't hate them. They are doing what many of us would do if given such an opportunity. Rather, blame the sanctioning bodies that allow them to race and look the other way when they clearly endanger others and impugn the quality of the sport. Brian Carroccio
Dodge Signs On To Sponsor Las Vegas Motor Speedway In '13 Chrysler’s Dodge brand left NASCAR this year, but the company signed a sponsorship with Las Vegas Motor Speedway that will make Dodge the track’s official vehicle in '13. Financial terms of the deal were not available. Dodge has been sponsoring the annual NASCAR Sprint Cup race at LVMS since '01. In addition to Dodge’s sponsorship of the Sprint Cup weekend, Chrysler’s Mopar Parts brand will sponsor the speedway’s drag strip, its Ram or Jeep brand will sponsor the dirt track, and its Fiat brand will be featured on a billboard near the highway outside the track.
Roger That! A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, Roger that! Mr. Carroccio's latest article titled There is only one person that can save IndyCar is spot on. Roger Penske is the only person that can return IndyCar to the preeminent form of motorsport it once was. I wish he would do it as a personal challenge before he retires, just to prove what a great leader can do for a dying company. But the Hulman George family and all their minions would have to leave him alone and give him free reign over everything IndyCar. He would have to be the face of IndyCar, and he alone for right now. As for Tony George, the man who destroyed the once great sport built up by CART, he should be banned from the paddock for life. Nancy Stallone
Texas Motor Speedway unveils new rainout policy for fans Texas Motor Speedway will take a different approach this year as it will allow fans that cannot stay for the makeup date to exchange their ticket for another Texas race within the next year.
The policy doesn’t guarantee the fan the same exact seat, but it gives those who cannot stay for the makeup date (typically the next day), the option of a Cup ticket for one of the next two Cup races or the IndyCar race.
Many tracks offer ticket insurance that would cover weather delays but the ticket exchange is apparently unprecedented in NASCAR.
Joe Mattioli III Leaves Pocono Raceway Joseph R. Mattioli, III, the son of Dr. Rose Mattioli and the late Dr. Joseph Mattioli, announced today that he is stepping down as a member of Pocono Raceway’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee.
Mattioli’s tenure at Pocono started in 1974 following his graduation from Lehigh University and spanned over 40 years, with him serving as a member of the Board of Directors, Executive Committee and as its past President and COO.
British Formula 3 slashes 2013 calendar to four events In accordance with the directors, partners and teams, SRO Motorsport Group announces today a restructured calendar for the Cooper Tires British F3 International Series for 2013.
After careful review and taking in to consideration the difficulties faced by teams in attracting budgeted drivers, a new calendar for the series will feature 12 races at four key events in 2013.
The extended FIA European F3 Championship has absorbed the commercial resources for teams heading in to 2013. This leaves the Cooper Tires British F3 International Series facing a difficult and uncertain future.
Planning under way for next year's Rolex 24 At Daytona With another Rolex 24 At Daytona in the history books, Grand-Am officials can turn their full attention to next year's race, the first for the unified Grand-Am and American Le Mans series.
Planning for next year's race — the 52nd annual Rolex 24 — began even before last weekend's race was under way.
“We're already thinking ahead,” said Herb Branham, managing director of communications for Grand-Am Road Racing. “We're not down to minute-by-minute planning for 2014, but there's an element (of planning) every day that is aimed at the 2014 Rolex 24.”
Miller shifts gears, becomes driver coach Joel Miller has won karting and Skip Barber National championships, was runner-up in the Star Mazda championship and competed in Firestone Indy Lights - all since 2005.
Now the 24-year-old from Hesperia, Calif., undertakes a new role in racing as driver coach for the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires and Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship powered by Mazda - two rungs of the Mazda Road to Indy development ladder. Miller will work alongside technical and driver consultant Johnny Unser, who will return for his fourth season.
RTL Unveils F1 Commercial Prices; Brazil, Canada, U.S., Monaco Are Most Expensive IP Deutschland, the marketing partner of German private TV channel RTL, has unveiled the commercial prices for the '13 F1 season, which starts in March, according to Alexander Krei of DWDL. The most-expensive races are the season finale in Brazil, the races in Canada and the U.S. as well as the Grand Prix of Monaco with a price of €84,000 ($113,000) for a split-screen spot. A 30-second commercial in one of the earlier race starts at €2,100 ($2,800). IP Deutschland CEO & Head of Sales Matthias Dang said, "We will continue to offer our advertising costumers the best-value in the top class of motorsports. Due to that we have slightly adjusted the prices for the upcoming season." DWDL
Super Bowl matchup creates wager between INDYCAR events Officials from Sonoma Raceway and the Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT have entered into a friendly wager over the outcome of Super Bowl XLVII between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens.
The wager between the two IZOD IndyCar Series race hosts will feature each putting up local fare. Race On, the promoter of the Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT, will offer some delicious crab cakes from Maryland as well as Berger cookies from the famous bakery in East Baltimore, and Sonoma Raceway, in true wine country fashion, will offer some of Sonoma Valley's world-class wine.
"I spent a few of my younger years in a suburb of Baltimore called Washington DC, and I know how tasty those Chesapeake Bay crabs can be," said Steve Page, president and general manager of Sonoma Raceway. "I appreciate the generous offer and look forward to sharing those delicious crab cakes with our staff… Go Niners!"
IZOD IndyCar drivers sweep podium at Rolex 24 Charlie Kimball leaned over the pit lane wall to cheer on Juan Pablo Montoya during his final stint in the No. 01 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates car. There was still an hour remaining in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, but the drama was as thick as the morning fog that brought out a caution for nearly two hours.
Kimball was soon joined on the pit stand by co-drivers Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas for the duration of the 51st event on the 3.56-mile, 12-turn circuit, which featured an event-record 72 lead changes. The last and most important came with 4 minutes, 52 seconds left when Montoya inherited the lead as Max Angelelli in the No. 10 VelocityWW car for Wayne Taylor Racing ducked onto pit lane for a splash of fuel.
Susie Wolff to Continue as Williams Development Driver
Susie Wolff (L) was formerly Susie Stoddart before marrying Toto Wolff (R) in October 2011. Toto has left for the Mercedes F1 team, but Susie has stayed with Williams. At least no one can complain of nepotism now.
Despite her husband Toto Wolff leaving the team to go to Mercedes, the Williams F1 Team announced that Development Driver Susie Wolff will be continuing her role with the team during the 2013 season.
Susie joined the Williams F1 Team in April 2012 and has played a valuable role in helping to develop the Williams-Renault FW34 and FW35. Susie's level of involvement will increase during the 2013 season, with an increased program in the team's simulator combined with a greater level of in-car testing. Susie will be the first to get behind the wheel of the FW35 when she drives the car at Idiada next month, and will do the majority of aerodynamic testing this season. Prior to joining the Williams F1 Team Susie spent seven seasons driving in DTM and was twice nominated for the prestigious BRDC Young Driver of the Year Award.
Mike Conway adds 1st IndyCar race to his schedule since walking awayUPDATE
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing announced today that they will enter a second Honda-Dallara-Firestone race car in the 2013 Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach IZOD IndyCar Series race April 19-21, and that 2011 Long Beach race winner Mike Conway will pilot the No. 30 entry. Sponsorship details will be announced at a later date.
“I am very happy to announce I will be racing with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing in the upcoming event at Long Beach in April,” said Mike Conway, 29. “The team has proven their speed and technical excellence in the past and I can't wait to start working with everybody. I worked with (RLL race engineer) Eddie (Jones) indirectly when he was Marco's (Andretti) engineer at Andretti Autosport so we would debrief as a group. He knows his stuff and has been around a long time so it should be fun working together. I hope to add more races for the upcoming season but in the meantime, I look forward to getting back on a circuit that I previously won on!”
V8 Team Dick Johnson Racing In Doubt For Season Opener
Dick Johnson's V8 Supercars team "faces an uncertain future after plunging into another financial crisis just a month before the start of the season," according to Mark Fogarty of The Age.
Without major sponsorship and having lost a key investor, Dick Johnson Racing -- the longest established and one of the most popular teams in V8 racing -- "is on the brink amid claims that it doesn't have enough funding" to make the first event in Adelaide, Australia from Feb. 28 to March 3. An emergency meeting of the team's board of directors "will be held on Tuesday afternoon to decide how -- and if -- DJR can survive."
The team must attract the minimum A$2M ($2.08M) in sponsorship or investment needed to field two Ford Falcons in the 14-event V8 championship. The Age
Vettel Nips Keselowski for 2012 Mario Andretti Trophy
Mario Andretti with the trophy
Motor sports icon Mario Andretti presented his namesake trophy to 2012 Formula One champion Sebastian Vettel as this year’s SPEED Performer of the Year on the Sunday night edition of SPEED Center.
“You are going up against the best of the best for this award,” said Andretti, the only driver to ever win the Indianapolis 500, the Daytona 500 and the Formula One World Championship. “We’re considering every major discipline in motor sports. That’s what you are up against … that’s the grandeur of this award.”
Vettel, who captured his third consecutive Formula One title in dramatic fashion to become the youngest triple champion in series history, came out atop five SPEED Performer of the Year finalists, including NASCAR champion Brad Keselowski, versatile youngster Kyle Larson, IndyCar champ Ryan Hunter-Reay and WRC legend Sebastien Loeb. Ten of this year’s 16 nominees earned at least one first-place vote in the balloting.
Rolex 24 Hour 22: Pruett Closes In On Record-Tying Triumph One record is down in the 51st Rolex 24 at Daytona. Scott Pruett may be on his way to tying another. Pruett led by 22 seconds in the No. 01 TELMEX/Target Chip Ganassi Racing BMW/Riley in the chase for a record-tying fifth overall victory in the great race. With 22 hours down, this year’s race broke the 2008 event’s record with 64 car lead changes.
Pruett, the pole-winner Thursday, led Marcus Ambrose in the hard-charging No. 60 Michael Shank Racing Ford/Riley. Max Angelelli was third the No. 10 Velocity Worldwide Corvette DP.
Rolex 24 Hour 21: Pruett Regains Lead With Three Hours Remaining Scott Pruett’s drive to a record-tying fifth overall victory in the 51st Rolex 24 at Daytona continued with three hours left Sunday afternoon. Pruett went from fifth place in the No. 01 TELMEX/Target Chip Ganassi Racing BMW/Riley following a restart back to the race lead in just eight minutes. The overall pole-sitter, who pitted for a brake change during the most recent full-course caution, got under Ryan Hunter-Reay at the entry to NASCAR Turn 1 to return to the point again.
Hunter-Reay, in the No. 10 Velocity Worldwide Corvette DP, held second place by 0.106 seconds over Mike Rockenfeller in Action Express Racing’s No. 9 Corvette DP.
Some NASCAR rules changes in 2013 NASCAR is going back in time with a series of changes related to qualifying and testing. Series officials met with Sprint Cup drivers and crew chiefs Saturday at Talladega Superspeedway to detail next year's changes.
The top 35 rule, in existence since 2005, will be eliminated. This rule was in place to ensure teams in the top 35 in car owner points (and their sponsors) would be in the race in an era when 50 or more cars were attempting to qualify for races.
The top 36 positions will be set by qualifying speed with the remaining spots set by provisionals, including a champion's provisional. Provisionals are based on car owner points rankings.
A random draw will set the qualifying order. The past two seasons, the order was determined by speeds in the first practice session.
Provisionals for the first three races next year will be based on the final car owner points standings this year instead of the first five races as in previous years.
Each organization can test at four tracks of its choosing next season where NASCAR competes, the first time teams can do so since 2008. The series' sanctioning body banned testing in 2009, and since then teams could not test at tracks where NASCAR held races, but they could test on other tracks. USA Today
Rolex 24 Hour 20: Hunter-Reay chasing down Rojas With four hours left in the 51st Rolex 24 At Daytona, Memo Rojas led a group of six Daytona Prototypes on the lead lap in the opening race of the 2013 Rolex Sports Car Series. Rojas and the No. 01 TELMEX/Target Chip Ganassi Racing BMW/Riley led by 5.969 seconds over Ryan Hunter-Reay in Velocity Worldwide's No. 9 Corvette DP.
Michael Shank Racing, looking for a repeat victory, ran third with Justin Wilson trailing by 24.359 seconds in the No. 60 Ford/Riley. The car made up seven laps in the overnight session thanks to timely wave-by periods and pit strategy.
MotoGP full of 'puppets' says Stoner Casey Stoner has revealed in the Australian Sunday Telegraph the real reason he walked out on a MotoGP contract worth more than $15 million a year. However, the 27-year-old wouldn't rule out returning to two wheels as he detailed the mammoth task he has in front of him this year.
Stoner has battle scars all over his body. "I broke my scaphoid, which is probably my worst injury other than my wrist and ankle," Stoner said.
"I have broken my collarbone twice in a year. That is about it for bones. I had a compression hit in my back when a rider missed a gear in front of me. He took me off track and I hit a hay bale and jacked all my back bones together. I have a leaking disc now and that causes some havoc. It locks up sometimes and I can't move an inch for an hour or so when that happens. I just have to lay there, helpless."
'In our day we got paid to drive' - Mansell and Piquet on modern F1 Nelson Piquet and Nigel Mansell had plenty to say about their famous F1 rivalry during their recent interview on Brazilian television.
The pair also discussed the state of the sport today including the challenges facing young drivers trying to get into F1, balancing sport versus entertainment, and motor racing in Brazil.
Piquet on the podium Mansell’s most recent involvement with modern F1 has been as an FIA steward. And Piquet made an appearance at last year’s season finale where he conducted the podium interviews.
Shortly before he stepped out to talk to Jenson Button, Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa, Piquet was surprised to be told he wasn’t allowed to talk about the championship, which had just been won by Sebastian Vettel.
Rolex 24 Hour 19: Rojas In Command, Defending Winners Back On Lead Lap
Rojas now in Ganassi 01
Memo Rojas took over for Scott Pruett and remained in the lead in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, driving the No. 01 TELMEX/Target BMW/Riley.
“Long way to go,” said Pruett, who is seeking his fifth victory in the event.
The car to watch may be the No. 60 now driven by Justin Wilson. The defending race-winning No. 60 Michael Shank Racing Ford/Riley lost seven laps in the early going, but through pit strategy and wave-byes is back on the lead lap.
Rolex 24 Hour 18: Racing Resumes, Pruett Back Out Front Racing resumed at 8:39 a.m. ET following a one-hour, 45-minute caution flag for fog.
Scott Pruett went back into the lead in the No. 01 TELMEX/Target BMW/Riley, 16.999 seconds ahead of Joao Barbosa in the No. 9 Action Express Corvette DP, Jordan Taylor in the No. 10 Velocity Worldwide Corvette DP and Richard Westbrook in the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette DP.
AJ Allmendinger managed to bring the defending race-winning No. 60 Michael Shank Racing Ford/Riley up to fifth place, one lap behind (after falling seven laps back in the early hours), while Alex Popow cut a right-front fire and fell off the lead lap in the No. 2 Starworks with Alex Popow Ford/Riley.
While there is no call for rain in Sunday’s forecast (sunny and 74 degrees expected), Mother Nature threw a curve at Rolex 24 competitors at 6:55 a.m. ET when heavy fog rolled in and enveloped Daytona International Speedway, bringing out an extended caution.
Max Angelelli led five cars on the lead lap in the No. 10 Velocity Worldwide Corvette DP, followed by Ryan Dalziel in the No. 2 Starworks with Alex Popow Ford/Riley, Richard Westbrook in the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette DP, Mike Rockenfeller in the No. 9 Action Express Corvette DP, and Scott Pruett in the No. 01 TELMEX/Target BMW/Riley.
Robert Kubica says a move to the DTM series could be an option in 2013, with the Pole open to a full-time seat in the category. The Krakow-born driver, who has been recovering from a near-fatal rally crash for the past two years, says he felt ‘no big limitations’ in the Mercedes DTM AMG C-Coupé during a test in Valencia this week.
Kubica in Valencia “For sure, DTM could be an option for me," Kubica explained. "It depends on different factors and different things, but the most important one is that the pace and performance of myself is good.
Commercial rights holder Bernie Ecclestone has claimed that F1 could continue without a new Concorde Agreement being signed.
The most recent version of the agreement came to an end at the end of the 2012 campaign, with discussions ongoing surrounding a new deal.
As yet, teams have been unable to reach agreement on a revised deal but – with time running out before the start of the new season in Australia – Ecclestone said he didn't feel it was vital that a new Concorde Agreement was put in place.
BRDC continues to seek Silverstone investment British Racing Drivers Club president Derek Warwick insists that work is ongoing to secure additional investment to help improve facilities at Silverstone.
The home of the British Grand Prix has already undergone a transformation in recent seasons thanks to a new circuit layout and the creation of the new Silverstone Wing complex.
Additional improvements to the circuit infrastructure and facilities are also in the pipeline although the BRDC has made no secret of the need to find additional financial backing to allow those changes to take place.
Rolex 24 Hour 15: Ganassi BMW leads Angelelli Hunter-Reay Corvette Jamie McMurray brushed the wall while speeding exiting pit road following a green flag pit stop, costing the No. 02 Target/TELMEX BMW/Riley seven laps. McMurray was running second behind teammate Juan Pablo Montoya when both cars pitted.
At the end of 15 hours, Montoya held an 11-second lead over Max Angelelli in the No. 10 Velocity Worldwide Corvette DP.
Ryan Dalziel in the No. 2 Starworks with Alex Popow Ford/Riley was third.
One of the most iconic brands in the modern history of V8 Supercar racing will return to the track this year alongside a couple of the biggest names in world motorsport.
Pirtek will be co-sponsor of the Red Bull Pirtek Commodore of two-time world MotoGP champion Casey Stoner.
Stoner, who retired from MotoGP racing at the end of last year, will drive a car entered by Triple Eight Race Engineering in the Dunlop V8 Series – the development category for the V8 Supercar championship.
Ganassi 02 goes behind the wallUPDATE The Ganassi 02 is back on track with now Joey Hand at the wheel after NASCAR driver McMurray lost control of that car trying to keep up with Montoya as the ex-Champ Car ace was giving him a driving lesson.
01/27/13 Jamie McMurray brought the Ganassi 02 behind the wall about 20 minutes past the 14-hour mark with smoke coming out from under the hood. We await to hear word if the car is done or can be repaired.
Rolex 24 Hour 14: Ganassi cars back in front NASCAR Sprint Cup Series rivals Juan Pablo Montoya and Jamie McMurray were running 1-2 at the end of 14 hours in the Rolex 24 At Daytona, with the No. 01 Target/TELMEX BMW/Riley grabbing the lead from sister No. 02 TELMEX/Target entry by 0.733 seconds about 1-minute past the 14-hour mark. Within 10 minutes Montoya opened up a lead of 4.5-seconds as the ex-Champ Car/IndyCar driver gave NASCAR's McMurray a driving lesson.
The Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates duo were chased by a trio of Corvettes, with five DPs on the lead lap. Oliver Gavin ran third in the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette DP, followed by Burt Frisselle in the No. 9 Action Express entry and Ryan Hunter-Reay in the No. 10 VelocityWorldWide Corvette.
Rolex 24 Hour 13: Hunter-Reay, Biela Take Leads Ryan Hunter-Reay took over the overall lead at the 13-hour mark of the Rolex 24 At Daytona in the No. 10 Velocity WorldWide Corvette DP, closely challenged by the No. 02 Target/TELMEX BMW Riley of Jamie McMurray. Six cars were running on the lead lap.
Frank Biela is out front in GT in the No. 13 Rum Bum Racing Audi R8, followed by Mark Wilkins in the No. 60 AIM Autosport Team FXDD Ferrari 458.
Rolex 24 Hour 12: Dario Franchitti Maintains Steady Lead At Daytona Dario Franchitti led at the halfway point of the 51st Rolex 24 at Daytona on Sunday morning as Chip Ganassi Racing continued its steady run. Franchitti in the No. 02 Target/TELMEX BMW/Riley led Ryan Hunter-Reay and Velocity Worldwide’s Corvette DP by 32.952 seconds. The top seven cars were within 92 seconds and on the lead lap in the first race of the Rolex Sports Car Series’ 2013 season.
Allan McNish was chasing Hunter-Reay in third place with Starworks’ No. 2 BMW/Riley. The Starworks entry was the only car to have significant time out front in the first 12 hours.
Rolex 24 Hour 10: Chip Ganassi Racing Still 1-2 Dario Franchitti moved to the front shortly after the fifth restart of the 51st Rolex 24 at Daytona on Sunday morning in the No. 02 Target/TELMEX Chip Ganassi Racing BMW/Riley. Just before the 10-hour mark, Franchitti restarted the race second – after the No. 77 Doran Racing Ford/Dallara stopped on track with no power – but wasted little time getting around teammate Charlie Kimball for the lead.
Kimball, who started his first stint in the race lead during the caution, was two seconds behind in the No. 01 TELMEX/Target Chip Ganassi Racing BMW/Riley. Joao Barbosa was trying to close in Action Express Racing’s No. 9 Corvette DP and sat 3.640 seconds behind Franchitti.
Rolex 24 Hour 9: Chip Ganassi Racing Stays In Front At Daytona
Scott Pruett in the 02 Ganassi BMW now runs ahead of the sister 01 car
Chip Ganassi Racing continued its run at the front of the field after nine hours of the 51stt Rolex 23 at Daytona. Pole-sitter Scott Pruett led in his No. 01 TELMEX/Target BMW/Riley by 2.192 seconds over teammate Scott Dixon in the No. 02 Target/TELMEX entry. The two Ganassi cars were the dominant cars in the opening hours with the No. 01 leading the majority of laps.
The top six Daytona Prototypes remained on the lead lap. Christian Fittipaldi ran third in the No. 5 Action Express Racing Corvette DP.
Rolex 24 Hour 8: Scott Pruett Jumps Ahead At Rolex 24 At Daytona After eight hours of the 51st Rolex at Daytona, Scott Pruett was back where he started: out front. The No. 01 TELMEX/Target Chip Ganassi Racing BMW/Riley led under full-course caution with 16 hours left at Daytona International Raceway. Kevin Estre went off at Turn 5 in the No. 18 Nuehiner Motorsports America Porsche and could not get the car going, necessitating the yellow.
Pruett led from Max Angelelli in the No. 10 Velocity Motorsports Corvette DP and the No. 02 Target/TELMEX Chip Ganassi Racing BMW/Riley of Scott Dixon. The top six Daytona Prototypes were shown on the lead lap.
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