Former karting star Oliver Askew has risen from obscurity -- at least so far as car racing is concerned -- to one of the hottest properties around in the course of just a few months. In his first blog of the year he looks forward to contesting the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda, which kicks off next week in St. Petersburg, Fla.
JUPITER, Fla. – I think it’s safe to say that the past couple of months have been flat-out insane. Just to put that in perspective, it was just six months ago that I was thinking about having to stop racing and look for something else to do. Now I realize more than ever before that I belong in motorsport and I can’t see myself doing anything else for the rest of my life.
Eric Boullier knows the sophisticated F1 power units drive up costs, bring no new fans to the sports, and create a larger gap between the haves and the have-nots.
Despite a troubled start with their Honda power unit, McLaren's Eric Boullier says McLaren undoubtedly knows how to win, but the introduction in 2015 of Formula 1's hybrid engine rules has clearly put the onus on the power unit, according to Boullier.
"The power unit is driving the performance much more than ever before. In the past when you had a difference of 30, 40 or 50 horsepower you could compensate for that with a good chassis.
"But with these power units we don’t speak only about power: we speak about deployment quality, recovery quality, strategy deployment - something we didn’t know in the beginning and only discovered last year.
"And it is there where Mercedes is still ahead, because they are discovering things before everybody else. And that is why you have a much bigger performance differentiation than you had in the past."
Mercedes pushed for these current power units. They were years ahead of everyone else in development and they have dominated since. Mercedes is happy, everyone else look losers.
Shark fin on F1 cars making them a handful in the wind
Bottas testing the shark fin. When a gust of wind from the side hits that hideous sail it will cause the car to snap sideways. Why do the cars have an airscoop and fin at all behind the drivers head? They are turbocharged now, hence not needed
Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas believes the 2017 cars will become even more challenging to drive if conditions are gusty out on track.
The Finn enjoyed a solid start to life with his new team in the first winter test, but he did suffer one spin on day two after being caught out by the wind.
"They are quite snappy if you have oversteer, it's very sudden.
"I think, as we had on day two, very windy conditions, the cars in general felt quite snappy then.
"I think the wind does make a bigger effect now because the overall downforce, aero-wise, produced is bigger. And, if you get a gust of wind, you lose a bigger amount of downforce than you would normally. So that makes it a bit more tricky."
Add to that the sailboat effect the shark fin has on the car and any strong side gust as the car is rotating into a corner will cause the car to snap sideways and possibly send the driver into the barriers.
Van Gisbergen claims thrilling 2017 Clipsal 500 crown
Sunday's start with van Gisbergen on the pole in the #97 Red Bull Holden and Coulthard alongside
Defending Virgin Australia Supercars Champion Shane Van Gisbergen has capped off a dominant weekend in Adelaide, claiming his second Clipsal 500 crown with a win in dramatic circumstances this afternoon.
It was another memorable Clipsal 500, with rising star Scott McLaughlin holding the lead until the 75th lap of 78. With Van Gisbergen closing in over the final laps, McLaughlin locked his brakes, allowing Van Gisbergen to pass and claim his second Clipsal 500 title.
2003 London Champ Car Trophy at Brands Hatch AutoRacing1 was there. Do you remember this race? Listen to the announcing staff led by Bob Varsha. Some of the best in the business. Fantastic cars that put today's IndyCars to shame. The good days before Tony George destroyed it all. IndyCar remains today a small fraction of what CART Champ Car had built.
Ernie Francis, Jr., and Dillon Machavern Capture Trans Am Poles at Sebring
Ernie Francis, Jr.
Ernie Francis, Jr., and Dillon Machavern captured their respective class poles in today's qualifying sessions at Sebring International Raceway as the Trans Am Series presented by Pirelli continues its opening weekend of the 2017 Trans Am Championship. These qualifying sessions also stood as the first Trans Am sessions on the Series' new Pirelli P Zero tires now featured across all classes.
A new car. A new class. The same Ernie Francis, Jr. That was the refrain throughout the TA class qualifying session as the three-time TA4 class champion participated in his first-ever TA qualifying session, a session that resulted in a resounding 2.00.981 lap time around the 3.74-mile Sebring circuit. As a result, Francis will start on pole for tomorrow's 100.98-mile multi-class TA, TA3 and TA4 race-all this with barely 20 laps under his belt prior to the session in the brand new No. 98 Breathless Pro Racing/ Beta Tools Ford Mustang.
NASCAR has clarified its policy for teams that miss qualifying [on Friday] at Atlanta Motor Speedway because of inspection problems.
After initially telling teams they would be required to start on scuffed tires, NASCAR now will allow teams that miss qualifying to start Sunday's 500-mile race on new tires (commonly referred to as "stickers" because the Goodyear sticker hasn't been scuffed off yet).
Kyle Busch’s victory in Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series Rinnai 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway didn’t come without a few bumps in the road.
That included a big bump afterwards.
Matt Humphrey, NASCAR Senior Manager Racing Communications, announced early Saturday evening that Busch’s No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota failed post-race inspection. The car was said to be too low in the right front and in the left rear.
NASCAR Atlanta Xfinity post race Q&A NXS - Race winner Kyle Busch (No. 18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota), crew chief Scott Graves (No. 18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota), runner up Brad Keselowski (No. 22 Discount Tire Ford) and top Sunoco Rookie finisher William Byron (No. 9 Liberty Chevrolet). Comment
The Glen companion races to IndyCars announced The IndyCar Grand Prix at Watkins Glen Int’l will feature four other IndyCar-sanctioned series in addition to the Verizon IndyCar Series.
The event, scheduled for Labor Day weekend on Aug. 31-Sept. 3, will feature the season finales for the Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires, the Pro Mazda Championship presented by Cooper Tires and the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship powered by Mazda.
Christopher Bell Wins First-Career Truck Series Pole Christopher Bell scored his first-career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series pole on Saturday, topping the speed charts for the Active Pest Control 200 to be run Saturday afternoon at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Bell bested his boss, Kyle Busch, with a lap of 180.922 mph for his first pole in 32 truck series starts. It's his second-straight top-five start of the season after locking down a fourth-place starting spot at the season-opening race at Daytona last week.
Kyle Busch, who will be running in both the truck series race as well as the Xfinity Series event on Saturday, will start on the outside pole with a lap of 180.105 mph. Rookies Austin Cindric (197.901) and Chase Briscoe (179.702) will start third and fourth, respectively, followed by Alex Bowman (179.557).
The storied history of then-named Laguna Seca Raceway officially began November 9, 1957 with the inaugural race called the Eighth Annual Pebble Beach Road Races. This was a continuation of the racing through the forest at nearby Pebble Beach that began in 1950 and ended six years later.
But the story of how the track was designed and built in record time is an oft-forgotten story. Over the coming months to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the iconic Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, stories will delve into some of the more memorable moments of the past six decades.
Kyle Busch on Atlanta Xfinity Series Pole Kyle Busch won his second-straight Atlanta Xfinity Series pole on Saturday, beating out rookie William in the early-morning qualifying session.
Busch, the defending race winner, turned a lap of 183.862 mph in the no. 18 Toyota, notching 58th-career Xfinity Series pole and his sixth all-time at Atlanta. Busch – along with Austin Dillon - is pulling triple duty in this weekend's truck, Xfinity and Cup Series races at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Brad Keselowski will roll off third, followed by Denny Hamlin and Daniel Hemric.
Colton Herta, the Indy Lights rookie for Andretti-Steinbrenner Racing, tested the push-to-pass system recently at the Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida.
Tony Cotman, race director for Indy Lights, discussed the differences compared to last year’s boost option and the inspiration behind the concept. This year’s system puts the decision more in the driver’s hands.
“The biggest fundamental difference is last year we would program before the race, both how many times you can use it and the duration it would be on once you used it,” said Cotman. “So let’s say we would be a pre-programmed amount of 10 times per race and we’re going to go for 15 seconds each time. That was all pre-programmed and done through the ECU (electronics control unit in the car).
“What we’ve done this year is we worked on last year’s [push-to-pass package], figuring out if we can use it through the timing lines [in the tracks]and the transponder [in the car]. We’ve kind of adopted a little bit of the DRS [drag reduction system]from Formula One – where if you are within one second of the car in front, the DRS automatically opens up the rear wing. For us, it’s similar. You have to be within one second of the car in front to activate it and then it’s up to the driver to hit the button and decide if he wants to use it,” he said.
A dozen states target clean cars with fees to offset loss in tax revenue
When all cars on the road are electric and no one is buying gas, the revenue from gas tax to repairs roads will have to come from an alternate source
Drivers of clean cars could be asked to pay special fees across almost half the country following a flurry of new state bills aimed at funding road improvements.
Lawmakers from a dozen states have introduced bills in the past few weeks to slap additional fees on drivers of electric or hybrid vehicles. The idea has come up before, and 10 states already have some version of the fees. But the interest this year is greater than ever before.
The state debates feed into a national conversation about how to pay for much-needed repairs to the country's roads. President Trump vowed during his address to Congress on Tuesday to spend $1 trillion in public and private funding to rebuild the nation's "crumbling" infrastructure.
Van Gisbergen claims first race win at Clipsal 500 Adelaide
Shane Van Gisbergen grabs lead at start
Defending Virgin Australia Supercars Champion Shane Van Gisbergen has claimed the first victory of the 2017 Virgin Australia Supercars Championship, winning the first race of the Clipsal 500 Adelaide.
Shell V-Power Racing Team ace Fabian Coulthard has taken a hard-fought second place in today’s 250km, 78-lap first leg of the Clipsal 500 Adelaide.
The #12 Shell V-Power Ford driver started off second on the grid after a great run in the Top 10 Shootout earlier in the day, and led for a solid portion of race until pit-stop strategies were fully realized. He held off a determined James Courtney, and ended up being bested only by Shane van Gisbergen.
As much as he wants to, don’t expect Kurt Busch to follow up his Daytona 500 triumph with a second try at Indianapolis 500 glory -- at least not this season.
The 38-year-old received several congratulatory texts from members of the IndyCar paddock, including Mario Andretti. Busch drove for Andretti Autosport in the 2014 Indianapolis 500 but says he hasn’t reached out to team owner Michael Andretti yet.
Several NASCAR teams missed out on a chance to take part in Cup qualifying at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Friday after failing to make it through technical inspection.
Sunday’s race is the first event of the season to utilize the new low downforce aero package, and teams have been experiencing issues all afternoon trying to get their cars to conform to the new specifications.
With just minutes before the start of qualifying, the cars of Kevin Harvick, Martin Truex, Jr., Daytona 500 winner Kurt Busch and hometown favorite Chase Elliott were still being pushed through the inspection line.
NASCAR Vice President of Officiating and Technical Inspection Elton Sawyer said that clearing the templates is where the majority of the teams were having issues.
"The teams asked for this," said Sawyer in the rigorous inspection process. "In the offseason we worked with them, we told them what we were going to do, they've asked us to stay consistent and that's exactly what we've done. At 5:00 p.m. today we had every car through the inspection process one time so we feel good about that."
Video: Jimmie Johnson Q&A from Atlanta NASCAR/Lilly Diabetes Partnership Announcement: Lou Garate (NASCAR), Mike Mason (Eli Lilly), Ryan Reed (No. 16 Lilly Diabetes Ford) and media availability with Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Lowe???s Chevrolet) Comment
Ryan Newman Leads Cup Practice at Atlanta Ryan Newman led Friday's lone practice session for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series cars for Sunday's Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Newman's lap of 29.509 seconds (187.875 mph) was quickest among the 39 entries for this Sunday's race. Newman's Chevrolet was joined on the scoring pylon by fellow Chevy driver Jamie McMurray, who posted a lap of 29.531 seconds (187.735 mph). Kyle Busch (29.553/187.595) and Matt Kenseth (29.569/187.484) were third and fourth quickest to lead the Toyota camp, while Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. (29.570/187.487) was the only Ford in the top five.
Video: NASCAR Atlanta Spring Pre Race Q&A MENCS - Chase Elliott (No. 24 NAPA Chevrolet), Daniel Suarez (No. 19 ARRIS Toyota), Kurt Busch (No. 41 Monster Energy / HAAS Automation Ford); NXS - William Byron (No. 9 Liberty University Chevrolet), Brandon Jones (No. 33 Anderson’s Maple Syrup Chevrolet) Comment
Mercedes will recall 1 million newer vehicles globally, 307,629 in U.S., after 51 fires Daimler AG said it will recall 1 million newer-model Mercedes-Benz vehicles worldwide due to the risk of fire, after 51 fires were reported.
The German automaker said that no injuries or deaths have been reported to them regarding the vehicles. It will begin the U.S. recall in July when parts are available.
Trans Am Announces 12-race broadcast package on CBS Sports Network The Trans Am Race Company today announced a 12-race broadcast platform for the 2017 Trans Am Championship, presented by Pirelli, bringing six Trans Am events throughout the 2017 schedule to a national audience on CBS Sports Network.
Each selected Trans Am event will have both 100-mile races, a multiclass TA, TA3 and TA4 race as well as an independent TA2 race, broadcast independently in a one-hour format.
Va Gisbergen expects stiff competition from Penske team
Penske's Scott McLaughlin hangs out the tail i his Shell V* Power car
Shane van Gisbergen has welcomed the emergence of Shell V-Power Racing as a Supercars force after edging out Scott McLaughlin in qualifying at the Clipsal 500.
The champion’s remarks come despite the high-profile defection of former Triple Eight technical guru Ludo Lacroix to the Ford squad and a subsequent raft of public comments by Roland Dane, Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes.
Andretti Autosport Season Preview A Fresh Start There's just something about starting a new season -- a clean slate, new goals, fresh ideas. You just can't help but feel energized. That's exactly the mind-set of Andretti Autosport as we kick off the 2017 racing season. With the new Verizon IndyCar Series and Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires seasons rapidly approaching, we're here to provide updates on some of the changes we've made, the thoughts our drivers have going into the 2017 season and how to keep up with this years progress. Here is our 2017 Season Preview.
Mercedes experiments with double T-wing. Is it a decoy?
Note the double layer T-Wing now on the Mercedes
Off and on during F1 testing at Barcelona this week, the Mercedes team ran both a single and a double T-Wing and they also ran the gearbox cover with and without a 'shark' fin.
Where does it stop? Might we see a triple or quadruple layer T-Wing make an appearance, or is the T-Wing just a decoy to make the competition waste manhours on something that results in zero performance gain?
There should be little letdown for the Indianapolis 500 following the milestone 100th race last year.
In an exclusive interview with IndyStar, Indianapolis Motor Speedway President Doug Boles revealed that he expects a near-record crowd, significantly exceeding the estimated crowd of 220,000 at the 2015 race.
"We'll be well north of (250,000)," Boles said Thursday at IMS. "That is not a problem."
Williams not blaming Stroll for three crashes in two days
Lance Stroll, has check will drive
Rob Smedley has reiterated that Lance Stroll should not feel he has 'let Williams down' following a damaging Formula 1 test debut at the Circuit de Catalunya.
The Canadian – the only full rookie on the F1 grid this season – made his F1 test debut for Williams on Tuesday but saw his outing end after just 12 laps when a wild spin at turn nine broke a 'little winglet' for which the team had no spare replacement.
Maven Introduces Reserve, a New Monthly Offering for Members
Maven, General Motors' personal mobility brand, has expanded its offerings to include a new monthly service, Maven Reserve. Maven members pay a monthly fee to reserve a new GM vehicle loaded with technology for 28 days. Members can download the Maven app to view pricing by market in real time for Maven Reserve.
Maven is a flexible mobility platform that provides members multiple offerings and pricing structures. Maven Reserve allows members to select from wider range of pricing options including hourly to daily or monthly.
NASCAR seeks dismissal of racial discrimination suit NASCAR has asked a judge to throw out a racial discrimination lawsuit filed by a Georgia man who claims that NASCAR rebuffed his efforts to launch programs and a race team to help with NASCAR's diversity efforts.
The federal lawsuit, with claims of damages of $500 million apiece for a variety of discrimination allegations, was moved from New York to North Carolina since its filing last September. Diversity Motorsports Racing owner Terrance Cox, who filed the lawsuit, has dismissed the race teams from the suit, leaving NASCAR as the sole defendant.
Van Gisbergen edges McLaughlin by 0.0001s for provisional pole at Clipsal 500
Defending Virgin Australia Supercars Champion, Shane Van Gisbergen, will head into the opening Top Ten Shootout of the Virgin Australia Supercars Championship in top spot after qualifying fastest on the Clipsal 500 Adelaide track this afternoon.
Just 0.0001 seconds separated Van Gisbergen and Shell V-Power Racing Team's Scott McLaughlin, who went into qualifying with the fastest time following today's practice sessions.
Video: What's Life Like for a Night Shift F1 Mechanic? Daybreak in Barcelona as Formula One pre-season testing continues. And as Lewis Hamilton hits the track, the night shift finally hit the sack... Comment
Video: Ricciardo's 2017 outlook With Melbourne on the horizon, Australian driver Daniel Ricciardo is set to lead the charge for Red Bull Racing in 2017. Mobil 1 The Grid caught up with the 27 year old to find out more about the regulation changes in place for the new year, and his hopes and expectations for the title challenge ahead. Comment
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