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DATE News (chronologically)
03/06/12
tv news
F1 opener and Sebring 12 Hour USA TV coverage  
Australian F1 Grand Prix through the streets of Melbourne
- Live Australia qualifying is on SPEED late Friday night (i.e., Saturday early morning, March 17) at 3:00 a.m.
- Live Australia race coverage is on SPEED late Saturday night (i.e., Sunday early morning, March 18) at 2:30 a.m.
- Replay of the Australia race is on SPEED Sunday, March 18, at 3:00 p.m.

The 60th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring (a good ESPN video of Sebring history is here)
- Live Sebring qualifying is on ESPN3.com at 3:15 p.m., Friday, March 16
- Live Sebring race coverage is on ESPN3.com at 10:15 a.m., Saturday, March 17
- Tape-delayed Sebring race coverage is on ABC at 12 noon on Sunday, March 18

03/06/12
f1
Marussia F1 Team’s MR01 passes final crash test  Hot on the heels of a successful track debut with its new 2012 contender at Silverstone yesterday, the Marussia F1 Team is pleased to confirm that the MR01 has now passed the final FIA-observed crash test.

Pat Symonds, Technical Consultant to the Marussia F1 Team, commented:
“After a challenging few weeks for the team, we are pleased to have overcome the last hurdle of the final FIA-observed crash test, which we passed today. The component in question actually passed an ‘unobserved’ crash test but has been performing inconsistently in the observed tests. The previous fail was only marginal so we needed to have a slightly more robust solution in place. A few minor adjustments to the original concept of the component was all that was required. We were all thrilled to see the new car out on track over the past two days and whilst we have a lot of catching up to do, we take heart from the fact that everything is back on a more positive trajectory. We now look forward to the challenge of the season-opener in Melbourne next weekend.”

03/06/12
karting
Lehigh Valley Grand Prix to Host 12-Hour Indoor Karting Endurance Race  Lehigh Valley Grand Prix, one of the premier indoor karting venues in the country, is holding a Jameson 12-Hour “Sine Metu (Without Fear)” Race on Sunday, March 18, during St. Patrick’s Day Weekend. The physically and mentally demanding gas-powered kart race will take place from 7:00am to 7:00pm and teams from all over America will converge to Allentown to take part.

“You will need more than the luck of the Irish to compete in the Jameson Sine Metu Endurance Race,” said Mike McCreary, partner of Lehigh Valley Grand Prix. “It takes driving skill and some serious mental fortitude to race for an hour or more at a time over 12 hours.” More ...

03/06/12
irl
alms
Tecate Returns for 11th Straight Year to Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach  
Tecate Light, the cerveza for those who want more, invites adults 21 and older in Southern California to enrich their experience at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 13-15, 2012, with live performances by award-winning Mexican band Belanova and legendary rock visionaries Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, the Miss Tecate Light Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach competition, ticket discounts at retail and much more.

To continue the tradition of ending the racing day with a live rock concert, the cerveza brand is proud to present Belanova as the headliner of Tecate Light Fiesta Friday. A fan favorite and critically acclaimed synthpop group from Guadalajara, Mexico, Belanova is known for tunes like “Tus Ojos” (“Your Eyes”), “Me Pregunto” (“I Wonder”), “Por Ti” (“For You”), and the more recent albums Sueño Electro I (Electro Dream I) and Sueño Electro II (Electro Dream II).  Band members Denisse Guerrero (lead vocals), ---Edgar Huerta (keyboards, programming) and Ricardo “Richie” Arreola (bass, guitar), will perform on the Convention Center outdoor stage on April 13 following racing activities.  More ...

03/06/12
starnazda
MAZDASPEED Races on ESPN International  
ESPN Logo
The Star Mazda Championship Presented by Goodyear and the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda includes racers from around the world. Both series are a part of the Mazda Road to Indy and have attracted the best young racers from not just from North America, but Europe, South America, and all parts of the globe.

Mazda has teamed up with ESPN International to allow their home fans to follow them better with a total of 13 hours of racing scheduled to be broadcast in 2012. ESPN's International Networks reach more than 62.1 million homes in over 178 countries and territories, including Africa, Australia, Caribbean, Europe, Latin America, Middle East and New Zealand. More ...

03/06/12
irl
nassprint
Penske Racing Renews Partnership With KIMBERLY-CLARK  KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL will once again partner with the Penske Racing teams competing in NASCAR and the IZOD IndyCar Series in 2012. The partnership, which began in 2011, will assist in the promotion and marketing of some of the top products within KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL including WYPALL Wipers as well as a host of personal protective equipment (PPE) under the JACKSON SAFETY and KLEENGUARD Brands.

KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL, which includes such global brands as WYPALL, KLEENEX, SCOTT, JACKSON SAFETY and KIMTECH, is an associate sponsor of Penske Racing's NASCAR and INDYCAR teams. Penske Racing crew chiefs in the Sprint Cup Series (Todd Gordon for the No. 22 team and driver AJ Allmendinger; Paul Wolfe for the No. 2 team and driver Brad Keselowski) and the Nationwide Series (Jeremy Bullins for the No. 22 team with drivers Keselowski and Parker Kligerman and Chad Walter for the No. 12 team and Sam Hornish Jr. behind the wheel) will wear the WYPALL logo on their uniforms in 2012. The chiefs will not only promote WYPALL Wipers, one of the toughest and most absorbent disposable wipers in the marketplace, but they will also promote a range of products aimed at helping manufacturing workers create exceptional workplaces. More ...

03/06/12
irl
Power puts out fire in his Chevy IndyCar  NASCAR had its big fire moment at Daytona 500, when a jet fuel fire raged across the track. IndyCar’s first fire of the season wasn't quite the same inferno, but had its own twist.
A fire inside Will Power's race car ended his first day of testing at Sebring International Raceway, and the Australian grabbed an extinguisher to battle the blaze himself.

Take that, Brad Keselowski.

Keselowski and Power both drive for Penske Racing, but the NASCAR driver drew worldwide attention for pulling his phone out of a pocket during a red-flag in the Daytona 500 to tweet pictures of the jet dryer fire that stopped the race. More ...

03/06/12
irl
Open Test day 2 session report  Ryan Hunter-Reay and Helio Castroneves -- 1-2 on the time sheet the first day of the IZOD IndyCar Series Open Test at Sebring International Raceway -- swapped spots during the morning session of day 2.

Castroneves, driving the No. 3 Team Penske car, had a quick lap of 52.3901 seconds on the 1.67-mile, 11-turn circuit as drivers prepare for the season-opening Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on the temporary 1.8-mile street course.

Hunter-Reay had a best lap of 52.5733 seconds in the No. 28 DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda car for Andretti Autosport.

Click it: Combined session results

The session continues until 5 p.m. A second group of drivers will test at Sebring on March 8-9. The Open Test is open to the public each day (9 a.m.-5 p.m.). There is a $10 admission charge. Firestone Indy Lights will conduct an Open Test at the facility Feb. 7. More ...

03/06/12
irl
track news
Barber Park announces upgrade to track amenities for IndyCar race  Less than four weeks away, the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama presented by Legacy has several exciting changes in store for fans attending the IZOD IndyCar Series and Grand-Am Rolex Series races March 30 to April 1 at Barber Motorsports Park. Convenient public parking and a new location for Billy's Sports Grill Club are just a few of the upgrades fans will enjoy.

New this year, spectators will enjoy free on-site parking Friday and Saturday. Premium on-site parking and preferred off-site parking for Sunday is available for purchase. Complimentary spectator parking for Sunday will be conveniently located right outside of Barber Motorsports Park at the Outlet Shops of Grand River, with a shuttle transporting fans directly to the gate. Sunday on-site parking is $25 while preferred off-site parking is $10. More ...

03/06/12
irl
IndyCar Drivers Deny Discussing TMS Boycott  Several IndyCar drivers “dismissed any notion of boycotting Texas Motor Speedway, and said the entire issue has been blown out of proportion,” according to Jenna Fryer of the AP. Driver Helio Castroneves yesterday said, "I want to stop all this nonsense discussion about boycotting. It's absurd, it's ridiculous and we are professionals and will race there."

TMS President Eddie Gossage “reacted angrily last week to rumors that IndyCar's drivers had discussed skipping the June 9 race at Texas over concerns with how the fence is constructed.” Justin Wilson, who serves along with Dario Franchitti and Tony Kanaan as a driver representative for the series, said yesterday that a boycott “was never even discussed.” He said that Texas “was discussed briefly during a Feb. 13 driver meeting in Indianapolis, but the issues covered centered on both pack racing and the fencing at Texas.” More ...

03/06/12
irl
alms
Long Beach GP tickets sales up  Grand Prix Association of Long Beach Corporate Sales Manager Martin Bannon said that ticket sales for the Izod IndyCar Series Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach "have been brisk this season in spite of a down economy," according to Barbara Venezia of the ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER. Bannon added that sales for next month's event “are actually up from last year.”

Track-side suites “range anywhere from $44,500 for Pit Row suites, to Seaside suites at $15,000 and Seaside Corner suites at $17,000.” The Vista Club, “located on the roof of the 17-story Hyatt Regency Hotel, has views of the front straightway and turns 1 through 6,” and three-day passes are $450 per person. Officials said that “only Friday and Saturday passes are still available.” Grand Prix Association President & CEO Jim Michaelian said that his organization “has looked at what competing sporting venues like Staples Center in L.A. and Honda Center in Anaheim offer in the way of luxury suite amenities to fans.”

He also said that over the last four years the Grand Prix Association “has taken major steps forward in their suites and club concepts.” Michaelian: “We want to provide them with an opportunity to entertain clients at the highest possible level.” He noted that the “addition of French doors opening to track seating in the Pit Row suites make the racing experience more attractive to non-hardcore fans -- those who want to socialize in a quieter, air-conditioned environment” OCREGISTER.com

03/06/12
gp2
Crestani sets the pace in Barcelona  GP2 Series 2012 pre-season testing resumed this week at Circuit de Catalunya. Four new faces joined the field: Giancarlo Serenelli at Venezuela GP Lazarus, Ricardo Teixeira and Sergio Canamasas at Rapax, and Jon Lancaster at Ocean Racing Technology.

Fabrizio Crestani proved today that new team Venezuela GP Lazarus is already on the pace in comparison with the rest of the field after he set the quickest laptime of the day in the morning session whilst Max Chilton at Carlin was fastest this afternoon. More ...
03/06/12
fil
Juan Pablo Garcia to Drive for Jeffrey Mark Motorsport  The Firestone Indy Lights grid continues to grow stronger with the addition of Juan Pablo Garcia, who will drive for newcomer Jeffrey Mark Motorsport for the 2012 season.

Garcia, who hails from Mexico, is not new to the Firestone Indy Lights circuit. He made his debut in 2009 and ran three consecutive partial seasons. He began his professional racing career in 2006 and has competed in several other series, including Formula Renault 2000, A1 Grand Prix and British Formula Three.

Freightliner Trucks will be the primary sponsor of the #76 entry. As one of the most recognizable and respected names in the trucking industry, Freightliner is the largest division of Daimler Trucks North America. More ...

03/06/12
racing news
Christian Fittipaldi joins International Superstars Series  
Christian Fittipaldi
A new superstar in world auto racing has joined the SUPERSTARS SERIES for 2012, as Christian Fittipaldi provided a sensational addition to the championship's line-up. Fittipaldi, nephew of 2-time F1 World Champion and Indianapolis 500 winner Emerson and son of former F.1 racer Wilson, decided to sign-in for a part-time SUPERSTARS program before joining full-time in 2013.

Fittipaldi's outstanding presence will be an important asset to the series. The Brazilian racer entered 40 Formula 1 events at really young age before crossing the Atlantic and completing an 8-season stint in the IndyCar Series. He also raced in NASCAR, Grand-Am and ALMS. His international career had started back in his home country, where he cruised to win the Brazilian Formula 3 championship. In 1991, he emerged as one of the best prospects in motorsports by taking a rookie title in the International F.3000 championship. More ...
03/06/12
fil
AFS and Andretti team to run Saavedra in Indy Lights  AFS Racing has become the co-entrant and primary sponsor of Andretti Autosport's No. 27 Firestone Indy Lights entry, which will be driven by series veteran Sebastian Saavedra. The 21-year-old will also pilot the Andretti Autosport/AFS Racing No. 25 Automatic Fire Sprinklers Chevrolet in the 2012 Indianapolis 500 and potentially two to three other IZOD IndyCar events.

The Columbian native will be the official test and reserve driver for Andretti Autosport's three full-time IZOD IndyCar Series entries. The opportunity will offer valuable IndyCar seat time for Saavedra, aiding in strengthening his career. More ...

03/06/12
irl
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Signs Luca Filippi to Drive Second Entry  Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing announced today that they have signed 2011 GP2 runner-up Luca Filippi to drive their No. 30 Honda-Dallara-Firestone entry in the IZOD IndyCar Series for the remainder of the 2012 season beginning with the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 27.  Filippi will team with Takuma Sato, whom he met while the two were testing Honda-powered Formula One cars.

“It's a great feeling to be part of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing,” said Luca Filippi. “Being a racing driver and a big motorsport fan too, it's amazing to have such a legend as Bobby Rahal as team owner. I'm sure he will help me a lot with my Indy car experience and help me learn all the different dynamics that I will find in my very first American open wheel racing season quickly.” More ...

03/06/12
f1
Marko admits Red Bull 'slightly ahead'  
Dr. Helmut Marko
(GMM)  With the 2012 season now looming, Dr Helmut Marko has admitted Red Bull is "slightly ahead" of its rivals.

February's official testing season is over, leaving competitors and pundits to predict the likely pecking order less than two weeks before the Melbourne grid forms.

"I see it like this," Red Bull consultant and driver manager Marko told Austrian television Servus TV.

"We are slightly ahead, then there are McLaren and Mercedes -- I don't know exactly, but not far away," he said.

On the other hand, Marko said Ferrari does not appear an immediate challenger.

"At Jerez, their car was very bad.  It has improved since then, but as we speak, Ferrari, I believe, are not in a position to go onto the podium," said the Austrian.

03/06/12
alms
The Delta Wing makes its track debut  A distant YouTube video of the car running at Buttonwillow has been posted (below) but everyone connected with the project is sworn to secrecy until the Delta Wing’s engine partner is announced. The announcement is expected to come in a couple of weeks.

The Delta Wing was driven at Buttonwillow by Alex Gurney and Marino Franchitti and more testing will take place over the next few weeks. Hopes are for the car to make its first demonstration laps prior to the Sebring 12 Hours on March 17. The Delta Wing will make its race debut at the Le Mans 24 Hours in June.

Calls to Delta Wing designer Ben Bowlby, the drivers or Dan Gurney were rebuffed with apologies and a refusal to comment. But a source, who was present at the test, said that the car could not have performed better. More ...

03/06/12
irl
IndyCar drivers count on new chassis to watch their backs  
Will Power in the new IndyCar
“We know how much energy we need to absorb in the foam, and how much travel there has to be in it to do that. But we haven't been able to come up with the foam that will do that [for every driver] and not be too thick.”

The foam used is the same stuff that goes inside crash helmets.

The pressing problem is hard front-end hits, when back injuries can be caused by motion in the middle of the spine due to the way the drivers are strapped in the car. High-G front hits are the kinds of accident that often cause severe, career-threatening injuries. More ...

03/06/12
nascar
Sportvision extends partnership with NASCAR  Sportvision, Inc., partner of NASCAR since 2000 and the leading innovator of digital sports content, broadcast enhancements and tracking data, announced that it has extended its partnership with Emmy Award-winning NASCAR Media Group as the exclusive tracking partner for NASCAR-sanctioned events through the 2018 racing season.

Sportvision's RACEf/x technology, the most advanced tracking technology created for televised sports, is now utilized in all three NASCAR national series after expanding to the Truck Series in 2012. Like Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series cars, the trucks are equipped with Vector II tracking devices. These devices are the latest generation of Sportvision RACEf/x technology and the first to utilize both Global Positioning Satellites (GPS) and Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS) satellite navigation systems.

The technology debuted in the Sprint Cup Series at the 2001 Daytona 500 and was introduced to the Nationwide Series in 2007. This patented, state-of-the-art technology tracks the cars at speeds reaching 200 MPH to create a complete "digital record" of a NASCAR race in real-time. With the addition, SPEED will now highlight a full slate of broadcast graphics during Truck Series broadcasts and the technology will continue to be an integral component utilized by other NASCAR broadcast partners through 2018. NASCAR PR

03/06/12
nassprint
Second person charged in Jeremy Mayfield theft ring  
Former NASCAR star Mayfield's continued trouble with the law and association with NASCAR is giving the series a bad name
A second person has been formally charged in a theft ring involving former NASCAR Driver Jeremy Mayfield.

The Hudson Police Department served an indictment on Rusty Alex Canipe of Catawba County on four counts of felony larceny, according to a news release from the Hudson Police Department.

The charges are a result of an investigation into the theft of several trailers and pieces of furniture that were stolen on February 26, 2011 from the former Anderson Truck Lines.

Canipe surrendered himself at the Caldwell County Magistrate's Office. His bond was set at $100,000. More ...

03/06/12
nassprint
Sadler to drive 5 races for MWR - No  UPDATE #2
Elliott Sadler
NASCAR Nationwide Series points leader Elliott Sadler will not drive five Sprint Cup races in the No. 55 at Michael Waltrip Racing as the organization announced last week.

Sadler said on Monday he met with Nationwide Series owner Richard Childress and other Richard Childress Racing executives after Saturday's win at Phoenix and decided it was "in our best interest for me to focus on Nationwide."

Sadler said nothing in the meeting was discussed about RCR being a Chevrolet team and MWR being a Toyota team.

"It was more about focus on what we are doing (in Nationwide)," said Sadler, who has a 10-point lead in the series after two races. More ...

03/06/12
irl
Broadcast Sports, Inc. incorporates four cameras into new IndyCar  Broadcast Sports, Inc. (BSI) has incorporated three new HD on-board cameras, for a total of four systems, in the next-generation chassis for the 2012 INDYCAR season. Based in Hanover, Maryland, BSI worked with chassis manufacturer Dallara to seamlessly integrate the existing roll hoop camera and three new cameras into the body design and electrical system. The new cars will debut at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 25.

The four cameras will provide new perspectives and never-before-seen action for viewers. In addition to the 360-degree roll hoop camera used in previous seasons, BSI has included a camera in the rear wing, for a panoramic forward-facing shot. A camera placed in the right side radiator duct, facing the front tire and suspension, will offer side views of the racing action, while a camera on the rear view mirror will provide a detailed view of the driver steering and shifting. Most INDYCAR races will have six cars equipped with the new four-camera system with plans for 12 cars with on-boards at the Indy 500. More ...

03/06/12
tv news
Motorsports This Week on ESPN  
NHRA Gatornationals Action on ESPN2, ESPN3
The NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series will hold one of its biggest events of the season this weekend with the Tire Kingdom NHRA Gatornationals in Gainesville, Fla., and drag racing fans can watch action on both ESPN2 and ESPN3. All NHRA programming on ESPN2 and ESPN3 is also available on computers, smartphones and tablets through WatchESPN and the WatchESPN app. The schedule:

Friday, March 9

2 p.m. Qualifying (live) ESPN3, WatchESPN
Sunday, March 11 4 a.m. Qualifying ESPN2, WatchESPN
Sunday, March 11 11 a.m. Eliminations (live) ESPN3, WatchESPN
Sunday, March 11 5 p.m. Qualifying (re-air) ESPN2, WatchESPN
Sunday, March 11 6 p.m. Eliminations ESPN2, WatchESPN

The traditional East Coast opener and the season’s first of 16 events for Pro Stock Motorcycle riders and first of 10 for Pro Mod racers, this event is one of the sport’s most revered with a rich tradition of history-making performances. This hallowed dragstrip has entertained spring-break-loving fans for four decades with such notable occasions as the first 260-mph Top Fuel and Funny Car runs in 1984 and the first 270-mph and 300-mph Top Fuel passes, in 1986 and 1992, respectively. Its 675-foot concrete launchpad is one of the longest on the tour. More ...

03/06/12
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Tuesday  
  • Button thinks Ferrari will recover.  Stefano Domenicali better hope so or 2012 could be his last hurrah.
    Button tips struggling Ferrari to recover
  • Ecclestone successor talk 'unnecessary' - Lauda
  • Mercedes ready to push top teams in 2012 - Lauda
  • HRT completes 2012 grid with Barcelona debut
  • Valencia hints at F1 share deal in 'coming weeks'
  • De la Rosa replaces GPDA president Barrichello
  • Alguersuari to stay in paddock with radio role
  • Salo intrigued ahead of secret Ferrari test More ...
03/05/12
irl
Unser Jr. arrested on DUI charge again  UPDATE #3 Bernalillo County Metropolitan Court Judge Sharon Walton reset the DWI trial for Al Unser Jr. on Monday morning after a discussion with prosecutors and Unser’s defense attorney.

Walton said in court that there are motions that need to be addressed and an issue raised with respect to belt tapes. Walton said she was told by attorneys that it might be beneficial for her to listen to the belt tapes prior to trial.

Another unrelated trial also had been scheduled today in Walton’s courtroom. Walton said she could not have two trials on the same day.

Walton said the unrelated trial needed to be brought first because the charges were older. More ...

03/05/12
starmazda
REPLAY XD1080® named the Official Camera of the Star Mazda Race Series  The Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear and action sports camera company Replay XD today announced a technical and Veach Replay XDmarketing partnership that will see each of the 20+ Star Mazda race cars competing in this year's championship equipped with a pair of the company's flagship Replay XD1080 cameras. All cars will have one forward-pointing camera in a 'shark fin' mounted on the top of the roll hoop; the second camera can be placed at each team's discretion - looking back at the driver, mounted to the driver's helmet, suspension, footbox, etc.

For sample video, click here

Recorded high-definition digital footage from each car will be downloaded after the race and made available to Carolinas Production Group, Inc., the TV company producing the "Mazda Motorsports Hour" airing on Discovery's Velocity Channel beginning in April. Footage can also be utilized by teams and drivers as a testing and educational tool; the Replay XD1080 cameras can be synchronized with the data system on each car, allowing video playback with data - engine rpm, throttle position, g-loadings, braking, etc. More ...

03/05/12
irl
Likeness of Dan Wheldon to appear on Indy 500 ticket  The first tribute to Indianapolis 500 winner Dan Wheldon will come Tuesday when this year’s race ticket bearing his likeness will be unveiled at Avon Middle School South.

The Hendricks County school was selected because of guidance counselor Paul Quirke, who submitted the winning Facebook thread describing why he has the best seats for the 500. Quirke’s tickets are in the Northwest Vista overlooking the part of the track where Wheldon passed rookie JR Hildebrand last May. More ...

03/05/12
tv news
Wind Tunnel Sunday (3/11)  Ralph Gilles, who’s in charge of Chrysler’s motorsports programs, will be unveiling the 2013 Dodge CUP car this weekend in Las Vegas. He will then be on Wind Tunnel Sunday night to talk about that and the company’s future in NASCAR. That future is in some doubt now that their flagship team of Penske Racing chose to go elsewhere for 2013 and beyond.

With just a week until the F1 season opener in Australia, Bob Varsha will be give us a preview of what to expect in 2013.

For Dale Earnhardt Jr., 2001 was a defining year in his life as he lost his father in the Daytona 500. In just his second season in the CUP series, Dale Jr. had to figure out how to cope with that loss as well as progress as CUP racer. In a recently released book entitled “In the Red: The 2001 Season with Dale Earnhardt Jr.,” author, Jade Gurss, chronicles this difficult and challenging time in Dale’s life. Jade will be here to tell us how 2001 help model Jr. into the driver we see today. More ...

03/05/12
irl
Dale Coyne Racing Sebring test report  
Justin Wilson in the Sonny's Barbeque car
Spring Training opened for the IZOD Indy Car Series on a sunny Monday in Sebring, Florida, and like their Major League Baseball brethren practicing nearby, Dale Coyne Racing took advantage of a beautiful Central Florida day to get a ton of preseason work done on the 1.67-mile short course at Sebring International Raceway.

The two-car team put both of its Honda-powered Dallaras through a full day of testing for the first time this year, logging 128 laps around the physical layout in preparation for the March 25 Indy Car season opener on the street circuit in nearby St. Petersburg. More ...

03/05/12
nassprint
Greg Biffle Gives Candid Interview on Tonight's NASCAR Race Hub  Coming off consecutive third-place finishes, Roush Racing driver Greg Biffle has quietly started the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series campaign in a very strong position. While very early, he sits second in points and feels his team is stronger than ever heading towards Las Vegas Motor Speedway next weekend.

But Biffle, driver of the No. 16 3MWraps.com Ford, felt his team should have been in a similar spot last year as well. Tonight, he gave a candid and revealing interview to NASCAR Race Hub host Steve Byrnes, who talked about a 2011 season loaded with missed opportunities. Here’s a portion of what Biffle said on tonight’s “All Access” segment; More ...

03/05/12
f1
Karthikeyan: New car a definite step up  Having become the first man to drive HRT F1's 2012 challenger this afternoon, Narain Karthikeyan was instantly left with positive feelings for the upcoming season, hailing the squad's new design as a 'definite step up' over its predecessor.

The 35-year-old Indian, who makes his return to the sport this year after a sporadic campaign with the Spanish outfit in 2011, rolled out the F112 as part of a dedicated promotional filming day at the Circuit de Catalunya in Spain.

"Today was a shakedown of the F112 and I have had the honor to be the first driver to test it," said Karthikeyan, who toured the venue on demo Pirelli tires. "The first impressions are quite good; it’s definitely a step up from last year. We couldn’t do any set-up work or stuff like that but everything seems to be working fine and there are no major problems so we can look forward to the season now. More ...

03/05/12
irl
Michael Andretti 'drafts' Adam Carolla on 'Celebrity Apprentice'  
Michael Andretti
It was week three on Celebrity Apprentice Sunday night, and former IndyCar racer and current team owner, Michael Andretti, is still on the show competing for his charity, Racing for Cancer. On Sunday's show, the racer from the famed Andretti family was said to be "drafting" a competitor, comedian Adam Carolla. Up until now, Mr. Andretti has managed to stay off the radar in terms of the show's editing of personality interactions on the show, but that started to change in week three. What happened?

The task for week three was to design two living window displays for Ivanka Trump's line of clothing and accessories for Lord & Taylor department store. The winning project manager would receive $20,000 for his or her charity. Michael Andretti remains part of the men's team, Unanimous. Because the task involved two different Lord & Taylor locations, the men's team split in two parts. Project manager this week was George Takei of Star Trek fame. At the other location, comedian Adam Carolla was in charge of building and constructing the displays. Mr. Andretti worked with Mr. Carolla. More ...

03/05/12
irl
Early IndyCar test photos from Sebring  
Marco Andretti Simona de Silvestro James Hinchcliffe
Ryan Hunter-Reay James Jakes Simon Pagenaud
Justin Wilson

Photos courtesy of IndyCar

03/05/12
irl
IndyCar Winter test Day1: Castroneves tops session 1  
Rank Car Driver Name C/E/T Time Speed Diff Gap Total Laps
1 3 Castroneves, Helio D/C/F 00:52.9415 113.559 --.---- --.---- 47
2 28 Hunter-Reay, Ryan D/C/F 00:53.1038 113.212 0.1623 0.1623 25
3 12 Power, Will D/C/F 00:53.1126 113.193 0.1711 0.0088 39
4 2 Briscoe, Ryan D/C/F 00:53.3341 112.723 0.3926 0.2215 36
5 27 Hinchcliffe, James D/C/F 00:53.6465 112.067 0.705 0.3124 29
6 18 Wilson, Justin D/H/F 00:53.7851 111.778 0.8436 0.1386 33
7 26 Andretti, Marco D/C/F 00:53.8815 111.578 0.94 0.0964 29
8 77 Pagenaud, Simon (R) D/H/F 00:54.0134 111.306 1.0719 0.1319 23
9 19 Jakes, James D/H/F 00:54.5190 110.273 1.5775 0.5056 29
10 78 de Silvestro, Simona D/L/F 00:54.6 110.183 1.6225 0.045 31


More ...

03/05/12
alms
wec
New Lola B12/60 LMP1 has arrived!  Lola today announced the launch of its 2012 LMP1 design - the Lola B12/60 that will compete in the inaugural FIA World Endurance Championship as well as the American Le Mans Series and European Le Mans Series this season.

CAD render of Lola B12/60 LMP1 coupe

Lola is building upon the successful foundations of its double title winning 2011 campaign when it took the ALMS and LMS manufacturers’ crowns. The Lola factory has been working solidly at its technical centre in Huntingdon, UK, to further enhance its LMP1 model for the 2012 season. Extensive development work over the winter in both aerodynamic and mechanical studies has produced a significantly different product for the 2012 season. More ...

03/05/12
track news
Phoenix catch fencing built correctly  A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, I cropped the picture of the Ryan Newman turn 4 crash at Phoenix and it sure looks like the mesh catch fencing is on the inside of the posts, were it belongs.  Eddie Gossage is way out of line saying that its fine on the outside of the posts. The only thing it saves is 30 to 40% in labor costs verses hanging the wire mesh under the overhanging posts. And finally I don’t like the new IndyCar. Chuck Nelson  Reader since April 2002

Dear Chuck, Chuck, All ISC tracks have the fence on the inside of the poles (i.e. the proper side) and all the SMI tracks have it on the outside.  The two companies use different engineering firms and they probably used the same fence details over and over from track to track.  As you say, it is easier to install the fencing on the outside.  Gossage is likely speaking the SMI company line in the hopes of avoiding a lawsuit forcing them to change the fencing at all their tracks.  Mark C.

03/05/12
irl
Schmidt and Hamilton teaming up for 2012  The longtime relationship between Sam Schmidt and Davey Hamilton as rivals, teammates and friends will reach a new level in 2012, as they have formed a partnership to strengthen an existing entry in the IZOD IndyCar Series.
       
A major primary sponsor for the No. 77 Schmidt Hamilton Motorsports Honda-powered Dallara driven by Frenchman Simon Pagenaud will be announced soon. Bowers & Wilkins/Magnolia will remain as a major associate sponsor of the team, which won the pole for the 2011 Indianapolis 500.

The 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season starts Sunday, March 25 at St. Petersburg, Fla. More ...

03/05/12
f1
Marussia finally launches their 2012 car  UPDATE
(GMM) Marussia's 2012 car made its track debut on Monday, despite having failed to pass all the mandatory FIA crash tests. But because the action at Silverstone is the team's 'filming and promotional' pre-season running, rather than an official test, it was allowed by the governing body and rival teams.

Designed by former Renault man Pat Symonds, the MR01 - fitted on Monday with demonstration Pirelli tires - does not feature a 'step nose', uniquely in common with technical partner McLaren's 2012 solution.

"It has been a long and frustrating wait for everyone in the team but we can now get back on track and start working towards the first race of the season in Australia next weekend," said team boss John Booth. More ...
03/05/12
v8
Davison leads Ford a V8 Supercar sweep in Adelaide  
Will Davison with trophy in hand, celebrates with rest of team
Will Davison and Mark Winterbottom gave Ford Performance Racing a one-two finish in race two of the V8 Supercars season-opener in Adelaide.

The team had been on course for the same result on Saturday until its gamble on going the distance on two pitstops failed and three-stopper Jamie Whincup was able to steal victory.

But FPR turned the tables today with a comfortable victory over Garth Tander (Holden Racing Team), while Triple Eight Holden duo Whincup and Craig Lowndes could only manage fourth and fifth. The result was FPR's first one-two since 2008. More ...

03/05/12
nassprint
NASCAR to use extra pace car behind jet dryers  NASCAR officials announced a change to have an extra pace car with flashing lights behind the last jet-dryer truck on the track in all races in all three series -- Sprint Cup, Nationwide and the Camping World Trucks Series. The change, which was explained to the Sprint Cup teams during the drivers' meeting Sunday morning at Phoenix International Raceway, comes after Juan Pablo Montoya's car spun into a jet-dryer truck during a caution period in the Daytona 500 Monday night. The drivers of the jet-dryer trucks also will wear helmets and fire suits during each race, but that is a change agreed upon by officials at race tracks that play host to NASCAR events, not a rule instituted by NASCAR. ESPN
03/05/12
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Monday  
  • Kimi Raikkonen
    'In two weeks we'll know' says fast Raikkonen
  • Kubica still months from F1 recovery
  • Man tipped to succeed Ecclestone leaves F1
  • HRT confirms Monday debut for 2012 car
  • Pic preparation 'sad and frustrating' admits Panis
  • Barcelona to propose race share deal to Valencia
  • Ecclestone offers to end Melbourne contract
  • Sahara Force India teams up with Hackett  More ...
03/05/12
nassprint
Tide Turns NASCAR Clean Up Into Commercial Spot  Last week, NASCAR fans across the country watched Tide laundry detergent come to the rescue after a massive explosion and fuel spill threatened to derail one of the most exciting and highly rated NASCAR races in years. But Tide passed the ultimate torture test and the race was able to go on.

Now, less than a week after the incident, the damage and clean up are the focus of a brand new commercial from Tide which is shown below. The commercial premiered during Sunday's Phoenix race on FOX at 2:30 PM ET.

03/05/12
nassprint
Tony Stewart falls victim to circuit breaker in fuel-injection system  
Stewart gets a push when his car would not restart
Tony Stewart had a circuit breaker in his fuel injection system pop in the Subway Fresh Fit 500 on Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway.

A circuit breaker that is part of the new electronic fuel injection system had flipped at some point during the race, so when Stewart shut off the motor to coast under caution – just as he did last week at Daytona – the car wouldn’t restart.

He lost a lap as he needed a push to pit road and then lost another lap before the team diagnosed the problem.

“It’s not really my department,” said Stewart, who finished two laps down in 22nd. “I just turned the [ignition] switch back on and it never re-fired.

“I don’t know why that was, but it definitely cost us a good day.” More ...

03/04/12
irl
IndyCar looks good from 2 angles  While we have been highly critical of the look of the new IndyCar when it's coming at you, in fact the side view and overhead view as shown on the Andretti Autosports Ryan Hunter-Reay car below, does look nice.

03/04/12
tv news
Wind Tunnel Sunday  In the two NHRA Top Fuel races this season, Antron Brown has been to the final round in both events…winning this past weekend’s round in Phoenix. He currently leads the series points over his two teammates, Tony Schumacher and Spencer Massey. Brown is seeking his first series championship and will join Dave on the show tonight to talk about that quest.

After winning the last two World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series championships, Jason Meyers has decided to take some time off of racing this year. He’ll be here to tell us why. More ...

03/04/12
f1
Barcelona Sunday: Raikkonen ends final day on top  Kimi Raikkonen concluded pre-season testing in the exact same manner in which he begun - with a P1.

Raikkonen proved to be the one to beat during the morning's session, which is when the majority of the field focused on qualifying style runs.

Opting for either one or two flying laps during short runs ahead of lunch, Raikkonen clocked a 1:22.030 to beat Fernando Alonso by 0.220s. More ...

03/04/12
nassprint
This is A.J. Allmendinger's big chance -- and he knows it.  
A.J. Allmendinger hopes to seize the moment that Roger Penske has given him
Allmendinger was owner Roger Penske's surprise choice -- he's never won a NASCAR Sprint Cup race -- to replace Kurt Busch in the No. 22 Shell-Pennzoil Dodge when Busch was released in December. But Allmendinger, 30, has shown potential in five seasons, including a 2010 pole at Phoenix International Raceway. He had 10 top-10 finishes and was 15th in points last season in a Richard Petty-owned Ford.

Allmendinger, a two-time International Karting Federation champion, earned two other open-wheel development series titles before finishing third in Champ Car points in 2006, with five wins. That led to a NASCAR opportunity. He co-drove to victory in the Rolex 24 at Daytona sports car race in January. More ...

03/04/12
f1
Troubles slow Vettel on final testing day  Sebastian Vettel's final day of pre-season testing has turned troublesome after a number of issues for the German severely limited his running in Barcelona.

Issues with the gearbox and an off-track excursion that damaged the nose on the car mean that Vettel sat bottom of the times heading into the final two hours of running – having completed just 15 laps.

“This morning I went off track and it broke the front wing, and then it took quite a while to get back out on track again,” he said during a media briefing at Catalunya. “Then just before lunch I suffered a problem with the gearbox and we have to fix it and get back out.”

“It wouldn't be fair so far to judge it because I have done so few laps,” he said. “[However] you never really know where you are until you get to Melbourne and everyone puts their cards down and you show what you have got in qualifying.

“In testing, you always have things you hope were better, there are not many years you can give yourselves a ten out of ten. Overall we can be quite happy, happier than five and less than ten. Somewhere in between."

03/04/12
f1
Barcelona Sunday: Raikkonen moves to top  Full lap times as of 3pm local time, on day four of the final four-day F1 group test in Barcelona, Spain.

1. Kimi Raikkonen Finland Lotus-Renault 1m 22.030s
2. Fernando Alonso Spain Ferrari-Ferrari 1m 22.250s
3. Bruno Senna Brazil Williams-Renault 1m 22.296s
4. Nico Hulkenberg Germany Force India-Mercedes 1m 22.312s
5. Kamui Kobayashi Japan Sauber-Ferrari 1m 22.386s
6. Lewis Hamilton Britain McLaren-Mercedes 1m 22.430s
7. Vitaly Petrov Russia Caterham-Renault 1m 24.795s
8. Michael Schumacher Germany Mercedes-Mercedes 1m 22.939s
9. Daniel Ricciardo Australia Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1m 23.393s
10. Pastor Maldonado Venezuela Williams-Renault 1m 23.430s
10. Sebastian Vettel Germany Red Bull-Renault 1m 23.608s

03/04/12
f1
F1 arms-race speeds up even before first race  (GMM)  At the front of the field in 2012, before a single racing lap has even turned, the well-known formula one arms-race has already begun.

As the last days of pre-Melbourne testing are counted down in Barcelona, Red Bull and McLaren unveiled major evolutions to their recently-launched new cars.

On the RB8, the major difference was the Sauber-style exhaust, after designer Adrian Newey was reportedly "impressed" with the 2012 solution devised by the Swiss midfield team.

"It's effectively a completely new (Red Bull) car," said the BBC's technical analyst Gary Anderson, according to the Guardian. More ...

03/04/12
irl
Indy 500's spectacle, challenge entice Barrichello  
Rubens Barrichello
The sights and sounds -- the spectacle of Race Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway -- left an impression on Rubens Barrichello that he vividly recounts almost 19 years later.

Barrichello, who's had the opportunity to compete on the Speedway's road course in Formula One, now is looking forward to competing in the Indianapolis 500 for the first time May 27.

"I'm thrilled," said the veteran driver, who on March 1 was confirmed as joining KV Racing Technology for the full IZOD IndyCar Series season. "(Competing in the U.S. Grand Prix) was not even close to what it is for the Indy 500. I think it's going to be a great experience. I can't wait to get my car to the ovals and see what it is. More ...

03/04/12
irl
f1
Barrichello compares F1 to IndyCar  
Rubens Barrichello
Rubens Barrichello is the only driver to have raced in a 2011 F1 Grand Prix as well as having driven the new-specification 2012 Dallara DW12 IndyCar and the V6 Chevrolet turbo engine, giving him a unique position to compare and contrast the experience in the two series.

"The first surprise was the fact that I didn't have the warmers on the tire. You know, I went out, it's a different technique to drive," he admitted straight away. "When I went out, Jesus, I didn't have the temperature on the tire, and I almost spun. So that's a new thing for me."

"My teammate Tony Kanaan is very, very good at that. He goes out, and he feels like he has new tires all the time," said Barrichello. More ...

03/04/12
alms
wec
Williams Hybrid Power Chosen as Supplier by Audi Sport  
Audi R18 e-tron quattro hybrid
Williams Hybrid Power (WHP) is pleased to announce an association with Audi Sport to become the hybrid system energy storage supplier for the Audi R18 e-tron quattro. WHP’s innovative electric flywheel will be at the heart of the Audi R18 hybrid system for the 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans race and the FIA World Endurance Championship.

For the Audi R18 e-tron quattro, WHP has designed an entirely new, ultra-lightweight electric flywheel and associated power electronics and the company has worked closely with Audi engineers to fully integrate its unique electric flywheel into the car. The system will provide 150kW of power and have a top rotor speed of 45,000 rpm. The Audi R18 e-tron quattro using WHP’s system will make its first competitive outing in the six-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps on 5th May. More ...

03/04/12
f1
Latest F1 news in brief - Sunday  
  • Grosjean in the Lotus
    Lotus: We were hampered by power steering issues
  • HRT won't make Barcelona either
  • Karthikeyan: HRT is not a Mickey Mouse team
  • McLaren: Working hard to understand the Pirelli tires
  • Kovalainen savoring battle with Petrov
  • Ecclestone offers to 'help' for Melbourne night race
  • Injured circuit worker remains hospitalized
  • Austin F1 promoter Tavo Hellmund sues other race investors More ...
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