Miami Formula E race still not approved In Miami, Douglas Hanks reported Formula E is "pursuing Miami for an updated version of the Grand Prix races that used to roar through downtown." FEH is "rolling out a series of races for the Formula E’s debut season, and Miami has been tentatively slated for March 14, 2015." However, FEH first "must win city approval for the event." Miami Herald
Formula E Commits To FIA Payments Formula E "has committed to paying" at least $24.3M to motorsports governing body FIA over the next 10 years, according to Christian Sylt of AUTOWEEK. The series' launch this September "comes at just the right time for the FIA," as its latest accounts show that it made a net loss of $3.4M on total revenue of $81.5M in '12.
Formula E's payment includes a $4.2M share of the proceeds from an estimated $21M investment in December "in Formula E's Hong Kong-based parent company Formula E Holdings (FEH)." The investment "was made by Causeway Media Partners," an investment fund founded by venture capitalist Bob Higgins along with NBA Celtics Managing Partner & CEO Wyc Grousbeck and Celtics investor Mark Wan. The group joins Spanish businessman Enrique Banuelos and Formula E CEO Alejandro Agag, the "majority shareholders of FEH."
A summary of a '12 agreement between the FIA and Formula E also "reveals that the FIA will receive fees of $67,000 from each of the 10 teams and $135,000 per race which 'should generate an additional revenue of $2 million for the FIA in 2014.'" AutoWeek
Infiniti's Relationship With Red Bull Representative Of Carmakers' Key Role In F1 Carmakers have "regained a significant role in F1 with new technologies like energy recovery systems being incorporated into cars," according to Rubio & García of EL CONFIDENCIAL. Infiniti, the title sponsor for Red Bull, "is enjoying a singular experience as much from a marketing point of view as from a technology standpoint thanks to its association with Red Bull."
Infiniti F1 Activities Global Dir Andreas Sigl said of Infiniti's entry into F1, "Being here in the paddock seems fun, but it is a business program. We have been around globally for 25 years and we launched our U.S. brand in '99, but we did not take off in Spain and Europe until recently. The objective is to become more global and position ourselves as a premium brand. We wanted to be in this segment together with Audi, Mercedes and BMW.
Doctors ‘begin process to bring Schumacher out of induced coma (Update)UPDATE On Tuesday, the Irish news website Independent.ie reported that a medical expert in Hamburg, Germany, has shared concerns about the dangers of bringing a patient out of a medically induced coma.
Professor Heinzpeter Moecke of the Institute for Emergency Medicine at the Asklepios Clinic went so far as to say that waking Schumacher could leave him in a “permanent vegetative state.”
“There is unfortunately the risk that in sneaking out of a deep artificial sleep the patient is then in a waking coma,” he said in a published report on the website. “This would mean a permanent vegetative state where Schumacher would effectively be paralyzed. Waking up from an artificial sleep can leave the patient initially confused, not sure of who he is or where he is.”
IndyCar Series plans day-long Fontana test session free to public IndyCar Series drivers are scheduled to hold a day-long test session next Monday at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana that's free to the public, the track said Tuesday.
The testing session, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., is to prepare the teams for the MAVTV 500 at the two-mile oval speedway on Aug. 30, the season finale for the series.
Drivers tentatively scheduled to take part include reigning IndyCar champion Scott Dixon, three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves, former Indy 500 winner Juan Pablo Montoya and last year's Indy 500 winner, Tony Kanaan.
Spectators will be allowed to watch the session from the Terrace Suite rooftops above pit road.
NASCAR to make announcement today on penalty and appeal process (Update)UPDATE As part of its wide-ranging initiatives to transform its competition model, NASCAR today announced enhancements to its penalty structure and appeals process beginning this season. In addition to these changes, NASCAR also announced the appointment of a Final Appeals Officer for the sport.
"NASCAR's Deterrence System is designed to help maintain the integrity and competitive balance of our sport while sending a clear message that rules violations will not be tolerated," said Steve O'Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president of racing operations. "This is a more transparent and effective model that specifically spells out that 'X' infraction equals 'X' penalty for technical infractions. At the same time, we believe the Appeals process allows a fair opportunity for our NASCAR Members to be heard, and have penalty disputes resolved by an impartial, relevant group of people with the ability to handle the complexities inherent in any appeal. This system has been tailored specifically to fit the needs of our sport."
IndyCar teams try to make every preseason test day count Mike Conway selects a spot out of the sun on Sebring International Raceway's pit lane for a conversation with Ed Carpenter Racing and Chevrolet engineers.
The dialogue during an extended break during a team test day includes performance characteristics of the twin turbocharged 2.2-liter V-6 engine, handling on the abrasive 1.67-mile surface, shocks, balance, braking. Conway recalls details of every alteration, almost every lap of the program checklist that includes new components from brake supplier Brembo and tweaks to the engine since it last ran.
Krisiloff Named Indiana Business Journal Under 40 Honoree Indianapolis Motor Speedway Senior Director of Marketing Jarrod Krisiloff has been named one of the 2014 Indianapolis Business Journal's Forty Under 40 business and professional leaders for central Indiana. The Forty Under 40 program recognizes talented individuals that have achieved an extraordinary level of business success at a young age.
The son of 11-time Indianapolis 500 driver Steve Krisiloff and the grandson of Hulman & Co. Chairman Mari Hulman-George, Krisiloff is the eldest of the "next generation" of Hulman family leadership at IMS.
'Just too slow': Drivers' damning verdict on new F1 car [Editor's Note: This article dovetails with the one we published earlier called Recipe for disaster; new F1 cars ugly, slow and they sound boring.] The first experience of the turbo V6 machines at Jerez last week showed that although the new engines are still delivering plenty of horsepower, they are lacking in cornering speed.
The best lap time of the test - set by Kevin Magnussen - was eight seconds off the best ever lap time set in testing at the Spanish track by Michael Schumacher back in 2004.
F1's new engine rules were described as "completely unnecessary nonsense" by Bernie Ecclestone last week, and the dissenting voices have now grown louder as drivers complain about a speed deficit which they feel will rob F1 of its sparkle.
Rally America Coming To NBC Sports The NBC Sports Network and Rally America, Inc. have reached an agreement to bring eight episodes of the 2014 Rally America National Championship to NBC viewers.
Each one-hour show will be jointly produced by Rally America and Rage Productions and will showcase each of the National Championship events. In addition to top quality action sports coverage, episodes will feature personal stories of national and regional competitors as they battle to overcome obstacles in their race to the podium. This is rally racing action as you’ve never seen it before.
Kyle Larson asks Chip Ganassi for chance to race the Indianapolis 500
Open Wheel ace turned taxicab driver Kyle Larson
Kyle Larson wants to race the 'May Double,' competing in both the Indianapolis 500 and Coca-Cola 600 but hasn't set a timetable with Chip Ganassi Racing or process in order to accomplish it.
Ganassi, who fields an entry for Larson and Jamie McMurray in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series as well as a four-car IndyCar program has entertained the notion from his 21-year-old prodigy but hasn't put the wheels into motion.
"There's not really a timetable," Larson told SB Nation last Tuesday at the NASCAR Media Tour. "I'd really love to run that race but there are a lot of commitments I'm going to have to do just on the NASCAR side."
Pat Garlits, the wife of 'Big Daddy' Don Garlits, dies Pat Garlits, the wife of drag racing legend “Big Daddy” Don Garlits, died of Alzheimer’s disease on February 2. Through over sixty years of marriage, Pat travelled with her famed husband, one of the greatest drag racers in history. She died at home accompanied by her two daughters, holding Mr. Garlits’ hand, according to a letter he wrote, with her favorite big band music in the background.
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) announced today that OnX Enterprise Solutions, a leading enterprise data center IT solutions provider, has become the official information technology provider and an associate sponsor of the IndyCar Series program.
“We are excited and honored to partner with RLL Racing to bring the thrill of IndyCar racing to our clients,” said Mike Cox, CEO of OnX Enterprise Solutions. “RLL and OnX are natural partners because we have speed, agility and winning in common and, because of our leadership positions in our respective industries. We look forward to a long and rewarding partnership with RLL Racing.”
Tommy Baldwin Racing Hires Parrott as Crew Chief Tommy Baldwin Racing announces the hiring of Todd Parrott as the Crew Chief for the #36 Chevy for the 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Season. Parrott, a well known name in the garage, has been with multiple teams within the industry for over 20 years, making his debut as a Crew Chief in 1995 with Robert Yates Racing. Following in his father Buddy's footstep, who was inducted into the North Carolina Auto Racing Hall of Fame, Parrott has achieved several accomplishments in NASCAR. Winning a Championship in 1999 with NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Jarrett, Todd has gone on to become the third most winning active Crew Chief in the NASCAR Sprint Cup garage, with 31 wins, including two Daytona 500's and two Brickyard 400's.
"I'm glad to get back to the sport I love, and I've missed," said Parrott. "I'm looking forward to working with Tommy, Bono, Michael, and the driver of the #36. I'm hoping to try and build this team into something bigger and better. I'm humbled. I'm going to continue to do what I know how to do and just try to make racecars go fast. I'm tickled to be here."
ISC Reports Financial Results and it's bad International Speedway Corporation reported financial results for its fiscal fourth quarter and full-year ended November 30, 2013. "2013 was a banner year for our sport with TV ratings up, the launch of the Gen 6 car, fan enthusiasm surrounding Danica Patrick's full season debut in the Sprint Cup series, and increasing diversity in the NASCAR fan base.
All are signs that the Industry Action Plan is working," stated Lesa France Kennedy, ISC Chief Executive Officer. "The exciting 2013 NASCAR season was capped off at our Homestead-Miami Speedway with a sixth Sprint Cup championship for Jimmy Johnson, the eleventh for Hendrick Motorsports. We are pleased to report solid results for our fourth quarter and full year 2013. Despite softness in certain markets and inclement weather impacting fourth quarter admissions, we are seeing encouraging signs of stabilization in our core business, driven by slowly improving economic conditions and solid consumer and corporate marketing strategies. "
That's all nice fluff, but see the ISC site to see that 2013 was another down year.
IndyCar’s February testing schedule set to resume Four IndyCar teams were projected to test on Monday at Sebring International Raceway, to kick off February’s testing schedule [but no test times were made available like is done in all other racing series except IndyCar. IndyCar likes to keep their fans in the dark so they forget about the series during the long winter break]. The rest of the month will see teams largely head west to California.
Per the official IndyCar testing schedule, Dale Coyne Racing (Justin Wilson and a second driver TBD), Schmidt Peterson’s Simon Pagenaud and Mikhail Aleshin, Panther Racing’s Carlos Huertas and an unnamed driver for Bryan Herta Autosport (likely Luca Filippi, but not confirmed) are listed for a single-day test today. Thus far, only SPM has tweeted its presence on site, via team manager Rob Edwards.
Marquez tops opening day of MotoGP test World Champion Marc Marquez topped the timesheets as this week’s Sepang Official MotoGP Test began on Tuesday. The Repsol Honda Team rider led the way from Yamaha Factory Racing’s Valentino Rossi and Honda team-mate Dani Pedrosa, with leading Open rider Aleix Espargaro seventh for NGM Mobile Forward Racing.
Following the usual break for lunch in the middle of the day, the final of the eight hours saw track temperatures drop which allowed riders to push for quicker lap times. This duly saw Marquez post 2’00.286, half a second up on Rossi as both the Italian and Marquez’s team-mate Dani Pedrosa jumped ahead of Jorge Lorenzo's Yamaha in the final minutes of the day. The top six was completed by GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Alvaro Bautista and LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl.
Dunlop Motorsport Manufacturing Plant to Close Dunlop announced Monday that its motorsport tire factory in Birmingham will close in September after serving the motorsports industry for nearly a century. Production of race tires will be moved to existing manufacturing plants in Germany and France.
It comes at a loss of 241 jobs for the U.S.-owned manufacturer, a subsidiary of Goodyear, which has been primarily involved in the FIA World Endurance Championship and European Le Mans Series as of late.
Dunlop’s 11-acre site it leased in the town of Erdington was sold to Jaguar Land Rover, which has plans to expand its neighboring facility. No suitable site was able to be found locally.
Ferrari chief slams critics for making snap judgments
Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali believes it would be unwise for critics to make snap judgments with regard to the new-look Formula One.
The sport embarked on a new era at the first pre-season test in Jerez last week as a different sound was heard with the arrival of the 1.6-litre turbo-charged powertrains, while the cars were also markedly altered visually given the shape of the noses and rear wings.
Understandably there were a number of unkind comments, not just from observers, but also those within the sport such as supremo Bernie Ecclestone who described the events at Jerez where several cars broke down as “a total farce”.
But suggesting a degree of caution was required, Domenicali said: “We are definitely on the eve of a new era in this sport.
Struggling Caterham F1 Team Under Pressure Despite Help From Kobayashi, Sponsors
Along with Toro Rosso, the new Caterham is the ugliest of the bunch
Caterham F1 Team "is one of the F1 teams with the fewest economic resources," according to Javier Estepa of MARCA. One of the team's drivers, Kamui Kobayashi, will "race for no salary."
Caterham said in a statement, "This is incredible. It surprised us and we appreciate it. Imagine if Cristiano Ronaldo did this and told the club to invest the money from his salary in a youth program. He would be a god to all the fans. For us, it means the same. In the modern era, for an F1 driver not to charge a salary is incredible."
Caterham has "just 350 employees." All the club's limits "have a clear explanation: money." For Caterham, "the help of sponsors is very important -- sponsors like mobile operator Truphone cover the club's communications needs, and thanks to this, the employees can travel the world without worrying about a subject as important in F1 as communication."
Plenty Of Markets Interested In Hosting MotoGP Motorcycle Races
Lorenzo chases Marquez
MotoGP, the pinnacle of int’l motorcycle racing, is expanding its global reach into new markets. The series will return to Argentina this season after more than a decade. In addition, countries like Thailand and Russia have signaled interest in hosting a MotoGP event.
"We have plenty of markets and plenty of new countries that are willing to host MotoGP. It’s a global competition," said Ignacio Sagnier, communications manager for Dorna Sports, which is the commercial rights holder of MotoGP. Representatives and promoters from both countries have already held talks with MotoGP execs. In the case of Russia, which will host its first F1 race this fall, Sagnier told SBD Global, "The interest is there.
They said, 'Okay, we would like to host a grand prix.' But I think it will be another two, maybe three years. They will have to build the circuit." The series also received interest from Wales, with work on the proposed new Circuit of Wales racetrack set to start this year.
Simoncelli Entering MotoGP Hall Of Fame Italian rider Marco Simoncelli will be inducted into the MotoGP Hall of Fame as a MotoGP Legend. The popular former 250cc World Champion was a front-runner in the premier class before tragically losing his life to an accident in 2011.
In becoming a MotoGP Legend, Simoncelli’s name will be the 21st on the list as he joins a list of 20 other greats. To the shock of race fans around the world, the Gresini rider lost his life on Oct. 23, 2011 in a crash on the second lap of the Malaysian Grand Prix, just one week after finishing in second place at Phillip Island.
Steve Page - President of Sonoma Raceway on IndyCar race Sonoma Raceway president Steve Page talks about its 2014 IndyCar Series race. The race marks the 10th consecutive year that the track has hosted the series.
National Motorists Association Takes Red-Light Camera Fight to Airwaves The drivers' rights organization National Motorists Association (NMA) launched its 2014 national campaign against red-light cameras with the debut of two television advertisements in the New York City metropolitan market. In front of a television audience exceeding 20 million, the "The Red-Light Camera Rip-Off" and "The Red-Light Camera Rip-Off: Rigged Yellow Lights" spots take aim at the safety claims made by the photo enforcement industry and their supporters, including elected officials. The video advertisements encourage the motoring public to contact their state and local legislators to voice opposition to red-light cameras.
"Privatizing automated traffic enforcement for profit is a recipe for abuse and corruption that leaves motorists paying the price." Gary Biller, President of the NMA said. As examples, he pointed to the bribery scandal that ticket camera vendor Redflex became embroiled in with the City of Chicago's enforcement program, accusations by a former Redflex executive of wider-spread misconduct by the company, and the case of a vice president from American Traffic Solutions who misrepresented himself in order to boost support for ATS's camera programs.
Sparse media coverage for the Rolex 24 There wasn’t a single word from Daytona in the New York Times, Boston Globe or other northeastern newspapers on the Rolex 24 and the only coverage of the race in USA Today was all about Gidley’s accident.
Indeed, the media centre at Daytona was very sparsely populated. I believe the Daytona Beach News Journal was the only American newspaper represented, plus the AP’s national racing writer. Most of the reporters at Daytona came from Europe with a total of 10 or so writers from the UK, Germany, Italy, France and Holland.
Toyota Motor Sales named Official Car of NHRA Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. has signed a multiyear agreement to be the Official Car of NHRA, beginning with the 2014 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season.
“Since 2002, Toyota has been an integral part of NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing at the league, title-rights, and team level,” said Gary Darcy, NHRA senior vice president of sales and marketing. “Toyota’s expansion of its sponsorship with NHRA reaffirms the return-on-investment for our sponsors and the accessibility to our fans that only NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series events can deliver.”
Since introducing the Celica-bodied Funny Car in 2002, Toyota has significantly expanded its role with the world’s largest motorsports organization. Currently, Toyota sponsors three Top Fuel teams and four Funny Car teams.
IHRA Inks Television Deal With MAVTV The International Hot Rod Association™ (IHRA) and IRG Sports + Entertainment™ are thrilled to announce the return of IHRA national event drag racing to a national television audience. In an exclusive deal with leading automotive network MAV TV, the entire 2014 IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series will air in a special 13-week series on MAV TV.
MAV TV, with its unparalleled line-up of motorsports events and exclusive automotive reality shows, will air all 12 IHRA Nitro Jam Drag Racing Series events and a special season in review episode in a unique, character-driven show that will focus on equal parts behind the scenes stories, car and driver profiles and on-track racing. The show will air in the fourth-quarter of the 2014 season.
Pirelli World Challenge TV schedule announced WC Vision today announced the television schedule for its 25th anniversary 2014 Pirelli World Challenge Championships season that will air on NBC Sports Network. All races will be broadcast in either 90-minute or two-hour programs aired in prime time on Saturdays or Sundays, with re-airs occurring on mostly Thursdays or Fridays.
"Coming off of a record-setting 2013 season that saw tremendous growth in the series' base of fans, cars and sponsors, we're excited to see more FIA GT3 homologated cars entered to race with us in 2014 as well as an increase in the number of world-class drivers joining the series," said Greg Gill, Vice President Marketing and Communications for WC Vision. "Our growth has allowed us the opportunity to expand our relationship with NBC Sports Network and produce an eighth broadcast for this coming season. The additional broadcast will be used to cover our races at Road America in June. The series' return to one of the most revered and iconic racetracks in the country with all our classes racing will provide for an amazing broadcast for our fans.”
Neil Alberico here, winning this past year's Night Before the 500 U.S. F2000 race.
Problems in qualifying ultimately proved difficult for Team USA Scholarship driver Neil Alberico to overcome when the intensely competitive Toyota Racing Series continued this weekend at Hampton Downs Motorsport Park. He finished the three races in 13th, 14th and 17th, only to be relegated to the back of the field in Race 3 after officials deemed he was at fault for an early incident involving fellow American Ryan Tveter.
“This past weekend has been rough,” said Alberico. “TRS has also been a pretty major learning experience thus far. We have had our fair share of ups and downs the past several weeks. We just have to gather ourselves up as a team and move on to the next round at the New Zealand Grand Prix. Big thanks to Victory Racing for all their hard work this past weekend. We are very much looking forward to redeeming ourselves at the Manfeild Autocourse.”
Alberico's progress during testing and official practice on Thursday and Friday was hindered firstly by a problem with the front mono-shock, then by locking brakes. Unfortunately, despite the best efforts of his Victory Motor Racing crew, the braking issues persisted into qualifying which ensured an unrepresentative 18th on the grid for Race 1 on Saturday and 20th for the feature event on Sunday afternoon.
NHRA Drag Racing Season Kicks Off This Weekend on ESPN Networks With drag racing fans ready for some on-track action after a long winter of inactivity, ESPN will begin its 14th season of NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series coverage this weekend with the 54th annual Circle K NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, Calif.,
Every February since 1961, fans have flocked to Southern California for the Winternationals, one of drag racing’s grandest traditions, for the unveiling of new cars, drivers, teams, and sponsorships at the season opener. The fabled and historic Pomona facility is well-known for its outstanding traction, smooth surface, and record performances.
NASCAR driver Travis Kvapil gets probation, community service for assault
NASCAR driver Travis Kvapil has agreed to a sentence of probation and community service as part of a deferred prosecution agreement stemming from his arrest in a domestic assault case last year, according to a report by SportingNews.com.
Kvapil, 37, will serve two years probation (at least one year supervised) and must perform 72 hours of community service after agreeing to the plea agreement Thursday in Iredell County (N.C.) District Court.
Kvapil was arrested at his home Oct. 8, 2013 by Mooresville, N.C. police and charged with misdemeanor false imprisonment and assault after allegedly pulling wife Jennifer by her hair and striking her in the head during an argument, according to a police report.
Last week you’ll remember I wrote an article pleading with Brian France for no more gimmicks.
Obviously he wasn’t listening.
The phrase ‘jumping the shark’ is a TV trope referring to the moment a TV series falls into decline with ridiculous storylines and gimmicks. With the announcement on Thursday that only wins will count to qualify for the Chase, elimination formats during the Chase, and a winner-takes-all showdown for Homestead, NASCAR has officially jumped the shark. It is no longer a credible motorsport series.
Fans across the world watched the announcement with jaws on the floor, thinking ‘surely this can’t be happening?’
V8 Supercars Field Includes Only 25 Cars Due To Cost-Cutting With just one seat to be officially confirmed, the V8 Supercars field "will be the smallest yet as even the top teams face a financial squeeze," according to Mark Fogarty of the Brisbane Times.
Two entries "have dropped out and another is doubtful, reducing the car count to 25." This V8 season, which starts with the March 1-2 Adelaide 500, "will be the first in recent years in which there hasn't been a full field of 28."
A Racing Entitlement Contract "is required for each car entered by an owner and REC holders are entitled to a share of V8 racing's end-of-year profits." But because of the V8s' "poor two-year interim TV rights deal, there was no payout last year and this year is also likely to see the teams get little or nothing." Brisbane Times
Five World Champions and Le Mans winners plus a former Formula One driver – this is the high-caliber driver line-up Audi will be competing with in the 2014 FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) and at Le Mans.
For the first time, the title defenders Loic Duval (F) and Tom Kristensen (DK) are sharing an Audi R18 e-tron quattro with Lucas di Grassi (BR). The former Formula One driver, who has been competing for Audi since 2012 and finished at Spa and Le Mans in third place last year, has been promoted to the role of a regular driver and replaces Allan McNish (GB), who has ended his career as a race driver. On the way to the 2013 World Championship title, Duval, Kristensen and McNish won three WEC rounds – including the 24-hour race at Le Mans. For record winner Kristensen, this marked the ninth success and for his team-mate Duval the first.
Recipe for disaster: New F1 cars ugly, slower and sound boring (2nd Update)UPDATE #2 Bernie Ecclestone was "responding to the evidence of this past week's first pre-season test in Jerez, where several teams have struggled with the unfamiliar fuel-efficient engines - which, even when they have run, have proved only a fraction as loud as the old V8s with their banshee scream."
As Ecclestone spoke, Red Bull’s top execs were "skulking away in mid-afternoon, unable to do any more testing after they grappled to fit their Renault-supplied power unit into the chassis." Overheating "was the result." F1 "feeds off the image of speed and glamour." The loudest and fastest cars in the world "are part of the allure." But in Jerez, some of the cars "were 11 seconds off the lap record"
02/02/14 CORRECTION: The official times were five seconds quicker than those listed in the AR1 article below. Sorry for the confusion.
This week’s official aggregate test times from Jerez: 1. Kevin Magnussen, McLaren, 1m 23.276s, 162 laps 2. Felipe Massa, Williams, 1m 23.700s, 133 laps 3. Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 1m 23.952s, 121 laps 4. Jenson Button, McLaren, 1m 24.165s, 83 laps 5. Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari, 1m 24.812s, 78 laps 6. Valtteri Bottas, Williams, 1m 25.344s, 42 laps 7. Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, 1m 25.495s, 173 laps 8. Nico Rosberg, Mercedes, 1m 25.588s, 188 laps 9. Nico Hulkenberg, Force India, 1m 26.096s, 17 laps 10. Sergio Perez, Force India, 1m 28.376s, 48 laps 11. Daniel Juncadella, Force India, 1m 29.457s, 81 laps 12. Jean-Eric Vergne, Toro Rosso, 1m 29.915s, 45 laps 13. Adrian Sutil, Sauber, 1m 30.161s, 103 laps 14. Jules Bianchi, Marussia, 1m 32.222s, 25 laps 15. Esteban Gutierrez, Sauber, 1m 33.270s, 60 laps 16. Marcus Ericsson, Caterham, 1m 37.975s, 12 laps 17. Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, 1m 38.320s, 11 laps 18. Kamui Kobayashi, Caterham, 1m 43.193s, 54 laps 19. Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso, 1m 44.016s, 9 laps 20. Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull, 1m 45.374s, 10 laps 21. Robin Frijns, Caterham, No time, 10 laps 22. Max Chilton, Marussia, No time, 5 laps
Vettel still underpaid Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton are the two highest paid drivers in Formula 1 this year according to a report by The Richest even though Sebastian Vettel is the best driver.
Alonso, starting his fifth year as a Ferrari driver, and Hamilton, in his second year with Mercedes, are reportedly each earning $27.14 million, with McLaren’s Jenson Button and quadruple world champion Sebastian Vettel banking $21.71 million from Red Bull.
Interestingly Kimi Raikkonen, who returns to Ferrari, is driving for $13.57 million this year half what his teammate Alonso is pocketing. The Finn was the last driver to win the world title for Ferrari when he did so back in 2007 during his first stint with the Maranello outfit. He reportedly received a similar amount back in 2009 to make for Alonso in the team.
Acceleration 14, a new, and very different, motorsports / entertainment concept
David Hasselhoff of 'Charlie's Angels' fame, knows that 'sex' sells
This past week was the presentation of Acceleration 14, a new, and very different, motorsports / entertainment concept, which will make its debut in 3 months time at the Portimao circuit in Portugal.
After visiting the following 8 circuits i.e. Navarra (Spain), Nurburgring (Germany), Monza (Italy), Slovakia Ring (Slovakia), Zolder (Belgium), Paul Ricard (France), Hungaroring (Hungary) and Grobnik (Croatia) the final race-meeting will be at Assen (Netherlands).
Part of the package will be entertainment, which will mainly be managed by David Hasselhoff and his “Celebrate the ‘80s and ‘90s with The Hoff” roadshow. The racecars used in the FA1 series of this concept will be the 'old' A1 GP racecars, albeit extensively revamped.
A lot of people are scratching their heads over the back of the McLaren
Sky Sports F1's Ted Kravitz has explained the bubbling controversy that is surrounding the rear suspension design on McLaren's new car.
The design, which features 'fat' wishbones, was noted almost as soon as the MP4-29 took to the Jerez track for the first time during pre-season testing on Wednesday.
With rear 'beam' wings outlawed by the FIA this season, McLaren's intention seems to be one of using the wishbones to help recover some of the downforce loss at the rear of the car by working its diffuser harder.
During his Notebook on Friday, Ted pointed out a kink in the wishbones - that enables the 'fatter' sections to sit perpendicular to airflow - and questioned whether it might be the crux that any protest would depend on.
"The legality question is: with the primary purpose of suspension to suspend the car, whether its other purpose is for aerodynamic gain? Given that you wouldn't normally have a suspension part - a compressive part - that has a kink in it," he explained.
Helio Castroneves again sets his sights on first IndyCar title Helio Castroneves is a three-time winner of the Indianapolis 500 but there's one prize that's always eluded him: An IndyCar Series championship.
So the 38-year-old Brazilian who drives for Team Penske will try again this season.
"That's the goal, and [winning] the Indy 500 [again]," Castroneves said Friday during a visit to Yorba Linda, where he filmed a safe-driving commercial for auto-club sponsor AAA.
"Unfortunately [the title] escaped from our hands [last year] but what are you going to do?" Castroneves said. "It's over, it's yesterday's news."
Bobby Rahal confident of stealing National Guard sponsorship from the Panther team
Bobby Rahal's IndyCar Series team is still hopeful of landing the National Guard sponsorship for the upcoming season, but the team principal said Friday that nothing's assured.
Rahal noted that, as The Indianapolis Star first reported, the U.S. Government Accountability Office's website shows that Panther Racing's protest was denied Jan. 17. Panther Brands LLC has been trying to keep the funding it has had in primary form since 2008.
The annual value of the sponsorship has been estimated at more than $10 million.
Securing the funding is key to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing having a two-car program, with Graham Rahal likely to field the car carrying the National Guard livery.
Ross Brawn announces retirement from Formula One to end speculation linking him with McLaren Ross Brawn today ended months of speculation over his future by confirming his retirement from Formula One.
Brawn, 59, has been heavily linked with a move to McLaren following the return of Ron Dennis to the team, but in a shock announcement to a fishing event in Aberdeenshire, he said he would not be returning to the sport.
"What they didn't realize when I was invited here was they had a scoop because the world's press was trying to find out if I was retiring or not," Brawn said.
"This is the busiest time of the year for Formula One and I said I would come along and open the River Dee.
"If they had put two and two together they would have realized I was definitely retiring."
Mateschitz blames Renault, not team, for Red Bull crisis
(GMM) Team owner Dietrich Mateschitz is keeping his calm, despite a nightmarish opening test of 2014 for the reigning world champions Red Bull.
While key Mercedes and Ferrari-powered rivals got up to speed at Jerez with their radical new V6, turbo and energy-recovery-powered cars, Red Bull struggled to run the RB10 with Renault issues and chassis cooling problems, ultimately collecting a meager tally of barely 20 laps for the entire four-day test.
Energy drink magnate and Austrian billionaire Mateschitz, however, sounded calm as he spoke to the Salzburger Nachrichten newspaper.
Video: Hennessey C7 Corvette Runs 200 MPH on Texas Toll Road On December 11, 2013, a 700 HP Hennessey C7 became the first 2014 Corvette Stingray to break the 200 mph barrier by reaching a maximum speed of 200.6 mph. This was achieved on a closed section of the Grand Parkway which connects I-10 to Hwy. 290 on the west side of Houston, Texas.
Officials from TxDOT, Texas DPS and TransCore were on hand to witness the testing of the EZ tag toll system. Special thanks to TxDOT Chairman, Ted Houghton. The Hennessey C7 Corvette was equipped with the company's HPE600 upgrade with the addition of a 100 HP Nitrous Express kit. The car otherwise was stock.
Mateschitz denies staff exits have hurt Red Bull team
Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz has denied that the exit of some leading technical personnel to rival Formula 1 teams is a factor in his squad's worrying start to 2014.
The champion team was at the foot of both the timesheets and the lap count at the end of the first week of 2014 testing at Jerez.
An assembly error that delayed Sebastian Vettel's emergence on the opening day, and myriad issues with both the Renault engine, its control systems and its installation in the RB10 meant Red Bull had to stop running early on the other three days, completing just 21 laps over the week.
Red Bull's chief aerodynamicist Peter Prodromou agreed to join McLaren last year, with former head of vehicle dynamics Mark Ellis and chief simulation engineer Giles Wood then leaving for Mercedes.
Wilson leads Dixon, Power and Franchitti at Sonoma in 2013
Tickets for the 2014 racing season at Sonoma Raceway go on sale Feb. 1, and the raceway has retooled its menu of offerings to better meet the needs of fans and continue to deliver great value for Northern California's top motorsports destination. Tickets for all major events will be available beginning Feb. 1, including the Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (June 20-22); NHRA Sonoma Nationals (July 25-27); GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma IndyCar Series (Aug. 22-24); and the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) (Sept. 13-14).
New for 2014, Sonoma Raceway will offer Buy-Early-and-Save options for all four of its major event weekends. By purchasing in advance of NASCAR, NHRA, INDYCAR and WTCC, fans can save up to 20% on event tickets. It's the perfect way to guarantee the best seats and the best prices. In addition, all Toyota/Save Mart 350 weekend pass holders will receive a complimentary Friday and Saturday Cold Pit Pass.
Chase For The NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship Format Change FAQ
Earnhardt, with zero wins, would have been the 2013 Sprint Cup champion under the new rules, which would have made NASCAR the laughing stock of motorsports.
NASCAR Q&A about the new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup:
Q. Does this new Chase format emphasize winning? A. Absolutely. The easiest way to make the new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup is to win. And winning is also the fastest way to advance in the Chase and become one of the four drivers competing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Q. How will the Chase Grid drivers be selected? A. Positions 1-16 on the Chase Grid will be determined by the drivers with the greatest number of NASCAR Sprint Cup Series wins after the first 26 races. However, the 16th position is reserved for the points leader if he/she does not have a win.
Lewis Hamilton has described Mercedes' week in Jerez as a "really fantastic start" to their year as the Silver Arrows outfit seek to end Red Bull's four-season domination of F1.
While Mercedes, who rescheduled their driver schedule for the final day to include Hamilton after Nico Rosberg completed a race simulation in the morning, laid down another 132 laps on Friday to take their four-day tally to a mammoth best-of-the-field 309, the World Champions packed up their bags and left for home just after lunchtime after managing a paltry total of just 21 laps in their overheating RB10.
While Rosberg was at pains to point out that the Jerez test had been a challenge of reliability and the W05 had not yet been tested for outright pace, Hamilton's delight with Mercedes' successful and largely trouble-free sprint out of the box was abundantly clear.
ACO, IMSA Continue to Work Towards Common Prototype Regs for 2017
While a mix of prototypes from GRAND-AM and the ALMS led the field in last weekend’s Rolex 24 at Daytona, the twice-around-the-clock endurance classic could have an entirely different look to it in just under three years’ time.
The TUDOR United SportsCar Championship season-opener served as the site for additional meetings between the ACO and IMSA, with a host of executives and technical leaders on hand for the historic first round of the North American series.
The two sanctioning bodies announced last September plans to develop a new worldwide prototype platform together for 2017 that would effectively replace the current LMP2 formula.
The Six Hours of Sao Paulo will now be the season finale of this year’s FIA World Endurance Championship, following confirmation of the final 2014 schedule by the FIA Endurance Commission Friday.
The Brazilian round, held at the historic Interlagos circuit, will now take place on Nov. 28-30, instead of the original late August date, which had been subject to confirmation since the calendar’s initial release.
The change, which came at the request of promoter Emerson Fittipaldi, has been made to ensure maximum exposure to the local market, as Brazil hosts the World Cup this summer. The revised F1 schedule also resulted in the facility being unavailable on the original date due to circuit preparations.
NASCAR hates the Indy 500, will stop its drivers from competing
NASCAR is IndyCar's #1 enemy. IndyCar hasn't figured that out yet.
In announcing the new rules for NASCAR’s Chase, you have to give NASCAR Chairman Brian France credit. He did it with a straight face.
The Chase, said by many to be the biggest overblown fraud in racing, had more bells and whistles added to it. But again, without much substance.
I won’t get into all the details because it’s hard enough to stay awake in this cold weather. They will start with 16 drivers. Apparently they will keep adding more contenders until Danica Patrick can make it. So I guess it might rise to 25. Better make that 30. In five years only Joe Nemechek won’t be eligible for the Chase.
Wolff: Position of a Formula 1 team principal is a thing of the past Formula 1 teams no longer need a traditional principal at the helm because the sport has moved on, according to Mercedes motorsport head Toto Wolff.
“That position is a thing of the past,” said the Austrian, who has shared executive responsibilities at the Mercedes team with Paddy Lowe since the departure of former team principal Ross Brawn at the end of last year.
While Wolff takes care of business, Lowe oversees the technical side.
“You don’t have the equivalent of a team principal in any other sport, let alone companies,” Wolff told the official F1 website on Friday, saying the role was a legacy of the past.
Burton Loses Truck Ride Turner Scott Motorsports announced today that Arrowhead, the primary sponsor of the No. 4 entry driven by Jeb Burton in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, has defaulted on payment to the team.
As a result of Arrowhead’s unfortunate and untimely failure to make a critical payment, Turner Scott Motorsports will not be able to field Burton and the No. 4 truck full time for the 2014 season. The loss of the primary sponsor also means that the company must begin making staff reductions. It is anticipated that the reductions will affect up to 20 percent of the current TSM workforce. The company is moving as quickly as possible to give the affected employees the maximum opportunity to seek employment with other teams.
01/30/14 Memo Gidley is currently scheduled to undergo surgery on his left heel on Friday morning. We will provide updates as available on Friday following the surgery.
01/28/14 After suffering multiple injuries in an on-track accident during the Rolex 24 At Daytona this past weekend, Memo Gidley has a long road to recovery ahead. The incident occurred on Saturday when Gidley was behind the wheel of the No. 99 GAINSCO Auto Insurance Corvette Prototype when he struck the disabled No. 62 Ferrari being driven by Italian driver Matteo Malucelli, Malucelli’s car was without power and moving very slowly between turns three and four of the road course when the No. 99 “Red Dragon” hit him.
Following the incident on Saturday, Gidley was admitted to Halifax Health in Daytona Beach, Fla. Once admitted, doctors discovered multiple fractures, including his lower left leg and left elbow, along with a lower back compression fracture. These injuries have required Gidley to have two surgeries since Saturday.
It has been confirmed that the FIA has concerns over the safety standards of the class of 2014, and they are believed to have written to all F1 teams on Thursday, requesting they submit analytical data confirming the nose tips are structurally sound, including a comparison to last year’s noses to see how they stack up.
The instruction asked for:
"Cross sectional areas of the nose, taken vertically and normal the car centre line, at points 50mm, 150mm and 300mm back from the tip of the nose itself.
"The same cross-sections as above showing the construction of the parts in the relevant sections.”
"In both cases we are only interested in the nose itself, not the front wing or hangers."
Honda quarterly profit more than doubles to $1.56 billion Honda Motor Co. today said its October-December net profit more than doubled to 160.7 billion yen ($1.56 billion), back to pre-Lehman crisis levels, helped by strong sales of the redesigned Fit subcompact that went on sale in Japan in September.
Honda cut its vehicle sales forecasts for this fiscal year as slumping demand in Thailand overshadows what has otherwise been a golden year for Japanese corporate earnings, which have benefited from the weaker yen.
Red Bull team pulls out early for 4th straight day
The RB10 is a complete failure so far
Infiniti Red Bull Racing ended its time in Jerez early today, a mechanical issue on the RB10 leading the team to pull out of the afternoon session and instead focus its attention on the next test in Bahrain.
“It's been a very difficult test,” said Team Principal Christian Horner. “We have had numerous Renault issues as well as chassis cooling issues, which have affected our progress. However, despite the lack of mileage, what we have managed to learn shows that the problems should be solvable for the next test in Bahrain. Part of the purpose of this early test was to learn about any issues ahead of the start of the season and there will now be a lot of focus on the dyno over the next few weeks.”
We were also making fixes to the issues that have arisen from our side and we have made progress there. However, we then discovered a mechanical issue with the car and after investigation it became clear we would not be able to fix this in time to run in the afternoon, so the decision was taken to retire early, take the data we have amassed and work towards the next test in Bahrain. Two weeks is a long time in Formula One and we and I’m sure Renault will work flat out now to solve the problems we’ve been having.”
McReynolds fails to address the fact a wanker with zero wins would have won the title in 2013 under the new system
NASCAR on FOX analyst Larry McReynolds shared his thoughts on the new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup championship format announced Thursday by NASCAR during its annual State of the Sport address in Charlotte, NC. The new structure places a greater emphasis on winning races throughout the season, expands the current Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup field to 16 drivers and implements a new round-by-round advancement format to produce a champion at the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Following are quotes from McReynolds on the new format:
ON THE OVERALL IMPACT THE CHASE CHANGES COULD HAVE ON THE CHAMPIONSHIP RUN: “We’re going to Homestead-Miami Speedway this year with no scenarios. We’ve been to Homestead before when the points leader only had to finish 25th or better to win. This is going to make Homestead nearly as big as the Daytona 500, and we’ve never had that before. Carl Edwards and Tony Stewart battling it out for the title was about as good as it gets, but this tops that. Now we have four drivers and it’s not about who leads a lap or who leads the most laps. It’s about who beats whom. This keeps the excitement level up from the green flag at Daytona until the checkered flag at Homestead.”
Shell supporting Ducati's return to World Superbikes Shell is extending its Technical Partnership with Ducati to support the Italian manufacturer’s return to the World Superbike stage in an official capacity in 2014.
The agreement means Shell now has a clean sweep of all Ducati’s factory racing activities, as it already supplies Shell Advance motorcycle engine oil and Shell V-Power fuels to the Ducati Team and the Pramac Racing Team in MotoGP.
The 2014 season marks the resumption of a partnership that saw Shell partner Ducati to six World Superbike Riders’ Championship crowns and nine World Superbike Manufacturers’ titles, in a relationship that dates back to 1999.
A farce: Under new Chase system, wanker would had won championship in 2013 In announcing major changes to the Chase for the Sprint Cup on Thursday, NASCAR chairman Brian France touted an emphasis on winning as a primary reason behind the format. But it turns out last year's champion, if the new rules were applied, would have been Dale Earnhardt Jr., who didn't win a race [and is still riding on Daddy's coattails].
According to economist Andrew Maness, who runs the nascarnomics.com site, Earnhardt would have made the final race along with Jimmie Johnson, Kevin Harvick and Jeff Gordon. NASCAR's Mike Forde confirmed the lineup. The driver who won the most races last season, Matt Kenseth with seven, would not have been eligible for the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. USA Today
In a perfect world, Michael Waltrip Racing would have Clint Bowyer's contract extension signed prior to the Feb. 13 start of Speedweeks. Bowyer, 34, is one of the top free agents this season. With eight career Cup wins and five Chase appearances in the past seven seasons, the Emporia, Kan., native would bolster any organization's roster.
"It's obviously something we're talking about," MWR team owner Rob Kauffman said. "Clint's been a great asset to the team. We love having him. It's his third season, and I think everyone wants to keep the band together." Bowyer said he's committed to getting a deal completed so the negotiations do not become a distraction once the 2014 season begins.
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