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DATE News (chronologically)
01/29/17
automotive

Paris Bans All Diesel Cars Made Before 2000
The city of Paris has announced it is banning most cars built before the year 2000, in an effort to curb air pollution. The law, which affects diesel vehicles built between 1997 and 2000, went into effect on Monday.

Paris has long struggled with the air pollution caused by its vehicles. Previously it had attempted to ban odd and even numbered cars from the road on alternate days based on license plate numbers, but that system was discontinued after it was proven ineffective. The new system sorts all vehicles into one of five categories, and requires drivers to display a sticker indicating their category on their vehicle.

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex Hour 23: #5 Cadillac leads but needs to stop
With 1 hour to go caution has again hit the Daytona Speedway giving all the teams the opportunity to stop under yellow and prepare for the race to the finish. However, as the clock struck 23-hours the #5 Cadillac driven by Felipe Albuquerque was in front by 41-seconds because they did not stop when the #10 Cadillac stopped. It will be interesting to see what their strategy is as the track goes green soon.

Dirk Mueller had the #66 Ford GT in front in GTLM but lost the lead in the final pitstop as the #3 Corvette came out in front. However, the front-engine Corvette does not have the speed to hold off the rear-engine Risi Ferrari and Ford GTs.

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01/29/17
automotive

California cannot get its act together with autonomous cars
Buried in its own red-tape it cannot get out of its own way, the democrat controlled state of California would be better becoming a separate country like so many of its liberals want.
This doesn't look good, Jerry Hill remembers thinking, writes Russ Mitchell of the LA Times.

He saw the photos online: Uber cars being loaded onto trucks in San Francisco, bound for Arizona. They were new Volvos, test cars bristling with driverless technology. 

The robot cars required state permits to operate in California, but Uber refused to apply. Officials ordered them off public roadways in late December. So Uber shipped the cars to a state where such permits aren't required.

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex Hour 22: Cadillacs Set for Battle to Finish
The #10 Cadillac drivers, from left, Jeff Gordon, Ricky and Jordan Taylor and Max Angelelli
The #10 Cadillac drivers, from left, Jeff Gordon, Max Angelelli, and Ricky and Jordan Taylor 
LAT Photo for IMSA

The yellow flew again as the clock struck 20 hours to go when the #93 Ferrari GTD came to a halt on the track with terminal drive-train problems. Jordan Taylor continued to lead in the #10 Cadillac by almost 20 seconds over the #5 Cadillac driven by Filipe Albuquerque. Rene Mast was almost a lap behind in the Riley, but was saved by the yellow as he was about to go a lap down.

It appears it is going to be a battle down to the wire between the Wayne Taylor Racing Cadillac and the Action Express Cadillac.  The Jordan Brothers and Max Angelelli have done the heavy lifting with this team. Jeff Gordon has not been behind the wheel much because he is too slow.  Will they put him in for the final stint in the dry to take all the glory at the finish?

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex 24 Hour 21: Cadillacs 1-2
Your leading Cadllac at the Rolex 24
Your leading Cadillac at the Rolex 24

After hours of persistent overnight and morning rain, a dry line has formed on the 3.56-mile Daytona International Speedway road course. With just over three hours remaining in the 55th Rolex 24 at Daytona, Jordan Taylor currently leads in the No. 10 Konica Minolta Cadillac. Christian Fittipaldi sits second in the No. 5 Mustang Sample Cadillac with Rene Rast holding a steady third in the No. 90 Visit Florida Racing Multimatic/Riley.

Joey Hand sits an impressive 5th overall, leading the GTLM category in the No. 66 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing machine. However, Hand's lead is far from secure as the top-6 GTLM cars are currently within six seconds of one another.

It's been a rough race for the Prototype Challenge class, marred by numerous spins. Currently, James French in the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports entry holds a comfortable 22-lap class lead.

Finally, Mario Farnbacher leads the GTD class in the No. 33 Mercedes.

Brian Carroccio reporting for AutoRacing1.

HOUR 21 STANDINGS

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex 24 Hour 20: Cadillacs lead
The #90 led at the 20-hour mark but does not have the speed to beat the Cadillacs unless they falter
The #90 led at the 20-hour mark but does not have the speed to beat the Cadillacs unless they falter

Although the standings below show the #90 Riley in the lead right at the 20-hour mark, the #90 had not stopped yet and the Cadillacs were back in front a few minutes after. Jordan Taylor leads in the #10 Cadillac after Max Angelelli put it on the #5 of Joao Barbosa on a restart and took the lead. Christian Fittipaldi is now in the #5 over 6-seconds back. Scott Sharp has the #2 ESM Nissan in fourth but he is over a lap behind for 4 hours left to run.

There is a great battle in GTLM between the #66 Ford GT with Joey Hand at the wheel and the #62 Risi Ferrari with James Calado at the wheel. Vilander had put the #62 Ferrari in the lead but Calado lost it back a few minutes ago. The #3 Corvette is not far behind and waiting to strike.

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01/29/17
wscc

Video Highlights Rolex 24 thru Hour 19
WeatherTech SportsCar Championship: Check out all the action through the first 19 hours of Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Comment
01/29/17
wscc

Rolex 24 Hour 19: Cadillacs Nose-To-Tail at front
The #5 Cadillac leads, but barely
The #5 Cadillac leads, but barely

With a track that is trying to dry but keeps getting wet by rain showers, the #5 Cadillac driven by Joao Barbosa continues to lead the #10 Cadillac driven by Max 'The Axe' Angelelli by just 0.2 sec.  Both drivers are being careful as they maneuver through slower traffic with 5 hours to go in the Rolex 24.

IndyCar driver has the #66 Ford GT out front in GTLM some 22 seconds ahead of the #62 Ferrari of Toni Vilander.

IndyCar driver Ryan Hunter-Reay continues to lead GTD in his Acura NSX, 30-seconds ahead of the #33 Mercedes.

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex 24: Hour 18: Cadillacs still lead at 3/4 mark
Ricky Taylor leads in the #10 Cadillac
Ricky Taylor leads in the #10 Cadillac

The sun may be up but the story is the same - the pace car leads the Rolex 24 again. Ricky Taylor’s No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R reclaimed the lead from the No. 5 Action Express Cadillac in the 18th hour of the Rolex 24 at Daytona on a still wet track.

Taylor had a 55 second lead over Joao Barbosa with six hours to go, prior to the 14th safety car period of the race, due to debris shed from the No. 26 BAR1 Motorsports Oreca FLM09 of David Cheng.

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01/29/17
motogp

HRC announce new partnership with fashion brand Pull&Bear
Marquez and Pedrosa
Marquez and Pedrosa

Honda Racing Corporation is pleased to announce the signing of an important new sponsorship agreement with Pull&Bear, the young fashion brand of the Inditex Group (Zara, Pull&Bear, Massimo Dutti, Bershka, Stradivarius, Oysho, Zara Home and Uterque).

Through this partnership, the 2017 and 2018 MotoGP World Championship seasons will find Pull&Bear’s logo on the race suits and clothing worn by reigning MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez and teammate Dani Pedrosa, as well as the uniforms of the Repsol Honda Team and HRC staff.

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex 24: Hour 16: Pace Car continues to lead
The asphalt is a wet oily mess
The asphalt is a wet oily mess
LAT/IMSA Photo

The pace car has led the Rolex 24 at Daytona for over 1-hour now as rain and fog continues to slow this race to a crawl.  The safety car was deployed with nine hours and 12 minutes remaining for worsening conditions, with the field still slowed.

Prior to that, the race’s 11th full course caution came out when Cooper MacNeil hit the wall in Turn 5, and limped his No. 50 WeatherTech Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3 back to the pits.

No change at the top since the last 15-Hour report with the same 3 cars on the lead lap Cadillac-Cadillac-Riley.

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01/29/17
nasmon

Jeff Gordon says support for NASCAR format grows
Jeff Gordon (L) and his #10 Wayne Taylor Racing co-drivers
Jeff Gordon (L) and his #10 Wayne Taylor Racing co-drivers
Jeff Gordon's presence in this weekend's Rolex 24 gave the international media a chance to get his perspective on NASCAR's recent rule enhancements for its three national series.

Gordon revealed that the new format -- which awards points to drivers after two early race stages in addition to the final finish -- was a work in progress right up until the last minute. And, he said, having the historic season-opening Daytona 500 included in the new look was also a topic of debate initially.

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01/29/17
nasmon

NASCAR Teams testing at Phoenix this week
Stewart-Haas Racing driver Kevin Harvick has won six of the last nine races at Phoenix International Raceway in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Which is why, teammate Clint Bowyer said, it makes sense for the 2014 champion to represent SHR during next week's organizational test at the 1-mile track located in Avondale, Arizona.

The two-day test is scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday, Jan. 31-Feb. 1. Only one team per organization is allowed to participate in NASCAR organizational tests.

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01/29/17
nasmon
irl

Bourdais interested in NASCAR road race
Sebastien Bourdais
Sebastien Bourdais
Heading into [the] Rolex 24 at Daytona International Speedway, Sebastien Bourdais is prepared to drive Ford's famous GT supercar in the twice around the clock event with co-drivers Joey Hand and Dirk Mueller. But after the checkered flag falls, he's open to taking a spin in a stock car on one of NASCAR's road courses, he confided to Kickin' the Tires on Friday.

He had his chance once before, with an opportunity appearing after runs in the now-defunct IROC (International Race of Champions) Series, but he took a pass rather than jump the open-wheel ship. Instead, Bourdais followed his dreams into Formula 1, and although the 37-year-old former CHAMP Car sensation didn't have the championship success he'd hoped for, he knew if he hadn't done so he'd always question himself.

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex 24 Hour 15: Rain continues to slow pace
The pace car has led a lot of laps in this race
The pace car has led a lot of laps in this race

Cold, rainy conditions persisted in the second quarter of the race. It made the racing surface extremely slippery with a number of cars spinning and going off-track. One of the biggest problems for a majority of the field was trying to find proper pressures and getting heat into the tires. We are now up to 13 total full course cautions.

Behind the pace car there are now three Prototypes at the head of the field on the same lap.

The #10 Taylor Racing Cadillac driven by Jordan Taylor is at the front followed by the #90 Multimatic Riley at the hands of Marc Goosens. Now back on the same lap, the #5 Action Express Cadillac of Filipe Albuquerque runs 3rd after earlier bodywork problems put them down a lap. Luis Derani has moved the #2 ESM Nissan into fourth just one lap down.

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex 24 Hour 12: Angelelli Leads at Half Distance
Max Angelelli’s No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing Cadillac DPi-V.R continues to lead the Rolex 24 at Daytona at half distance.

The Italian has 85 seconds in hand over the No. 90 Visit Florida Racing Riley Mk. 30 Gibson of Rene Rast, with Christian Fittipaldi’s No. 5 Action Express Cadillac a further lap behind in third.

After its accident in the tenth hour, the No. 22 Tequila Patron ESM Nissan Onroak DPi returned to the track in 36th position overall and tenth in class, with Johannes van Overbeek at the wheel.

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01/29/17
wscc

Rolex Hour 10: #22 Nissan crashes out
Leading #10 Cadillac
Leading #10 Cadillac

Just before the 10-hour mark of the Rolex 24 Brendon Hartley crashed the #22 ESM Nissan in the turn 4 banking after he had just stopped for new rain tires. With the track wet and the air temp just 55-degrees F there was little heat in the tires, which contributed to the crash.

With the caution flying Ricky Taylor was in the lead in the #10 Cadillac. The Taylor Brothers are doing the majority of driving in the rain because NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon is too slow in the rain after spending his entire career driving in circles on a dry track.

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