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DATE News (chronologically)
04/04/07
irl
Reader Feedback
Readers slams IRL for negligence  UPDATE The same reader writes again over three years later, Dear AutoRacing1.com, I'll be damned if Brian Barnhart and/or the IRL is looking to take credit for this thought. Three and one-half years gentlemen you have sat on your hands since the following posting was publicly displayed. You, are the source for all this physical anguish, who have brought so much division and shame to our American racing heritage, are just now finding it within your realm of interest and reason to pursue this goal.

Your surgeons and orthopedic specialists are tired of trying to piece together our drivers; and they have obviously finally may have brought you to your senses.

Commendable it may be for you to employ your resources to exact this superior level of safety for competitors and fans but, sir, the thought is not yours.

I look forward to the finding of a successful application of my original idea. Let's hope that when that day arrives, the track owners do not put up the resistance they did to the safer barrier (we miss your Jerry Nadeau). Gary Bouchard- Los Angeles, Ca.

10/24/03 A reader writes, The excitement of open wheel racing has always included the dreaded 'touching of wheels' that launches a car. In light of the recent incidents (My condolences to Tony Renna's fiancée, family and friends and God-speed to you Tony. Also best wishes on a healthy recovery to Kenny Brack) there has been every type of lashing out at the open wheel series (some of it is quite justly due) at needing to make adjustments.  I believe that the upper limits of reasonable speed have been found and I think everyone- Car owners, drivers, series officials, designers and engineers, and the fans- is accepting and cognizant of this point. More ...
04/04/07
cc
A true testament of speed and technology  LOVELAND, Colorado – RSPORTS and its driver Justin Wilson are proud to honor CDW’s new Western Distribution Center’s true testament to speed and technology this weekend at the Las Vegas Grand Prix by placing a little part of their pride on the #9 CDW Champ Car.

As part of a team building exercise, the coworkers at CDW’s new Western Distribution Center decided they wanted a logo – a personality for the distribution center as the building itself was plain and lacked character. They went to work and soon came up with an alligator…thinking he was tough and sustainable, just like them, working hard to meet their goals and overcoming challenges. The guys back at corporate said, “Well, we like your creativity; however, you are in the middle of the desert and alligators are known to be rather sluggish and slow.” More ...

04/04/07
cc
17 confirmed drivers for Vegas so far  
Drivers and teams in the 2007 Champ Car World Series season opener:

1. Sebastien Bourdais, No. 1, Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing
Born: Feb. 28, 1979
Hometown: Le Mans, France
2. Graham Rahal, No. 2, Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing
Born: Jan. 4, 1989
Hometown: New Albany, Ohio 
3. Paul Tracy, No. 3, Forsythe Championship Racing
Born: Dec. 17, 1968
Hometown: Scarborough, Ontario, Canada
4. Robert Doornbos, No. 4, Minardi Team USA
Born: Sept. 23, 1981
Hometown: Rotterdam, Holland
5. Will Power, No. 5, Team Australia
Born: March 1, 1981
Hometown: Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia
6. Mario Dominguez, No. 7, Forsythe Championship Racing
Born: Dec. 1, 1975
Hometown: Mexico City, Mexico More ...

04/04/07
nascar
Busch fastest, Fords struggle  Kurt Busch was the only driver to top 123 mph in the final test session Wednesday at Richmond International Raceway.  Busch posted a lap of 123.141 mph in his Penske Racing Dodge.
 
Juan Pablo Montoya was second quickest in the afternoon session with a speed of 122.393 mph in his Chip Ganassi Racing Dodge.

Richard Childress Racing's Jeff Burton (122.344), Bill Davis Racing's Dave Blaney (122.084) and Ganassi's Reed Sorenson (122.067) rounded out the top five.

The top five had representatives of three of the manufacturers - the top Ford was Matt Kenseth in 19th (120.827). Scenedaily.com

04/04/07
cc
Las Vegas: Neel Jani preview  Las Vegas will be one of the important races in my career" (Deutscher Text weiter unten)  By next Sunday, Swiss race driver Neel Jani will participate in his first Champ Car World Series event in Las Vegas. This Series is the American equivalent to Formula 1, racing only on street and road racetracks. The 23 years Rookie has already impressed by placing himself consistently in the top three of pre-seasons tests. Regular podiums as well as a championship top three standing are the clear targets for the Swiss driver.

Neel Jani will compete this season for Indianapolis based Team Red Bull PKV Racing, has strongly impressed during pre-season testing by always keeping up or even beating Series most experienced drivers, establishing himself as one of the best Rookie for 2007 already. "Test results give me lots of confidence, but the race is something different, like a new story" explains the Champ Car newbie. All racetracks will be new to the young Swiss driver and the race strategy which in America is characterized by numerous "full course yellow" Safety Car phases, regulated pit opening times as well as obligation to use two different types of tires per race will require some adaptation. Compared to Formula 1, the car has similar power (750 to 800 HP) but does not offer power steering or traction control and has less aerodynamic down force, making it much more physical to drive. More ...

04/04/07
f1
Massa: "We have a much better understanding of the car"  The Maldives - Today is my last day of a short break I have had following last week's test in Malaysia. I chose to come to the Maldives. It's the first time I have visited this part of the world and I am really happy with the choice I made to come here after testing. It's a great place, really beautiful. The atmosphere is very calm and relaxing, the hotel is fine and the beach and the sea are beautiful.

I've doing plenty of sport and training in preparation for Malaysia and that has also been a good choice, because it feels even hotter here than in Sepang. I am not blasé about being here and realize this is one of the best aspects of being a Formula 1 driver, apart from the racing of course, that means I can come to a nice place like this when there is some time off between races. More ...

04/04/07
f1
Tombazis unveils the F2007 project philosophy  Greece has never hosted a grand prix, nor has it produced any F1 drivers, but aerodynamics seems to be something of a forte for Greeks, including Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro's Chief Designer, Nikolas Tombazis. Passionate about motor racing, a seven year old Nik watched his first grand prix on television. "From then on, I was hooked!" he says. "In 1978, when I was about ten years old, I was fascinated by the aerodynamic aspect as this was the era of the ground-effect cars. I used to read all the racing magazines and as I was quite good at Physics and Maths at school, I decided it would be worth going for an engineering degree in the hope of getting a job in motor racing. So I went to England to study and then found my first job with Benetton in 1993, moving to Ferrari in 1997. Then I took a short "sabbatical" from Ferrari for a couple of years but I am back now!" More ...
04/04/07
Industry News
Daimler CEO Vows Action as Investors Rage  DaimlerChrysler (DCX) Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche confirmed on Apr. 4 that discussions are under way with potential buyers of the money-losing Chrysler division. "I can confirm that we are talking with some of the potential partners who have shown a clear interest," Zetsche said, adding that he would not disclose any details of the talks in order to maintain maximum scope for maneuver.

The statement was a small but psychologically important concession to mounting market pressure for assurance that a sale is moving forward. Since Zetsche said on Feb. 14 that Daimler was considering "all options," including the sale of Chrysler, the group's share price has risen nearly 30%. It traded around $82 at midday on Apr. 4, down about 1%.

Despite relief that a deal is under discussion, investors pelted Zetsche and supervisory board members at the annual shareholders meeting in Berlin Apr. 4 with stinging criticism and sharp-edged questions about the company's failed merger strategy.

Sale Now Inevitable?
"Chrysler has been sick for many years and is dragging down the company" said Hans-Richard Schmitz, a lawyer and representative speaking on behalf of the Düsseldorf-based Association for the Protection of Minority Shareholders. "What's missing is a very clear and swift decision. I don't understand, Mr. Zetsche, why you are so hesitant?" More at BusinessWeek

04/04/07
alms
Salo, Ferrari entertain at Long Beach  Risi Competizione driver Mika Salo was featured Tuesday along with some of the top names in Hollywood at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Press Day. The event focused on the celebrities who will compete in the Pro/Celebrity Race on April 13 as well as Salo, who provided rides for the media in a Ferrari 430 GT Challenge car. It was provided by Giacomo Mattioli, who owns the No. 61 Ferrari of Risi’s American Le Mans Series operation. Mattioli also owns and operates Beverly Hills Ferrari.

Celebrities included producer/director George Lucas; actresses Kelly Hu (“Growing Pains”), Kathryn Morris (“Cold Case”), Emily Procter (“CSI: Miami”) Aisha Tyler (“Talk Soup”) and Kendra Wilkinson (“The Girls Next Door”); actor Joshua Morrow (“Young and the Restless”); former NBA star and talk show host John Salley; former tennis superstar Martina Navratilova; X-Games champion Dave Mirra; and Robin Quivers (“Howard Stern Show”).

“It was a fun day,” said Salo. “Not only did we get a chance to show off the Ferrari 430 GT, but we were able to introduce the American Le Mans Series and its great style of racing to a new market and some influential members of the entertainment industry.”

Salo and teammate Jaime Melo lead the GT2 class of the American Le Mans Series, having captured wins in the first two races of the season at Sebring and St. Petersburg. They will go for their third straight victory of the year at Long Beach on April 14, a race that will be televised by SPEED from 8:00-10:30 p.m. ET (same day tape delay). MotorsTV in Europe, SPEED Latin America and 7TV in Russia will carry the race live. American Le Mans Radio and IMSA’s Live Timing & Scoring will be available at americanlemans.com.

04/04/07
cc
Sponsors for Doornbos  AutoRacing1.com can now reveal that OzJet Airlines will be the primary sponsor on the Robert Doornbos Champ Car with associate sponsorship from the Meurmans Group, Jumbo Supermarkets and Media Mall. More later...
04/04/07
irl
Motorola to co-sponsor Michael Andretti  Motorola, Inc. and Andretti Green Racing (AGR) today announced the company's co-major sponsorship of Michael Andretti's IndyCar for the 2007 Indianapolis 500. In 2006, Andretti stepped out of retirement to race alongside son Marco at the Indianapolis 500, finishing third, in one of the most exciting races in recent history.  Motorola, already lead sponsor of Danica Patrick's #7 AGR IndyCar, will join Jim Beam as lead sponsor of Andretti's #39 car, while continuing to provide critical two-way communication solutions for all AGR teams. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.  "We have shared a long and successful relationship with Motorola and I am looking forward to strapping myself into the Motorola/Jim Beam IndyCar and racing alongside Marco once again at Indy," said Andretti.  "Co-sponsoring Michael's car involves the Motorola brand in two of the most exciting plotlines at this year's Indianapolis 500," said Kathleen Finato, senior director of North America marketing, Mobile Devices, Motorola, Inc. "As co-sponsor of Michael's car and title sponsor of Danica Patrick's IndyCar, we hope to be part of a historic win on the sport's grandest stage."
04/04/07
cc
Maybe Champ Car should talk to ESPN  Because Champ Car is still showing its China race on May 20th on its website, and because Champ Car must not be talking to its TV partner that the race is moving to October, ESPN had a promotion that aired five times two days ago that said they would be airing the China race in five weeks.  Won't someone be surprised!
04/04/07
irl
Indy 500 entries to-date  UPDATE Penske Racing and A.J. Foyt Enterprises, which have combined to win five of the last eight Indianapolis 500's, each filed three entries April 4 for the 91st running of "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing."  Sam Schmidt Motorsports also filed an entry.

04/03/07 91st Indianapolis 500 entry list (updated as of April 3, 2007)

Driver Entrant Car C/E/T Entry Date

  1. Buddy Rice (W) Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 15, 15T Dreyer & Reinbold Racing D/H/F March 7
  2. Sarah Fisher Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 5, 5T Dreyer & Reinbold Racing D/H/F March 7
  3. Marty Roth Roth Racing 25 Roth Racing D/H/F March 12
  4. Tomas Scheckter Vision Racing 2, 2T Vision Racing D/H/F March 15
  5. Ed Carpenter Vision Racing 20, 20T Vision Racing D/H/F March 15
  6. Anthony Foyt IV Vision Racing 22, 22T Vision Racing D/H/F March 15
  7. Scott Sharp Rahal Letterman Racing 8, 8T Patron Sharp Rahal Letterman  Racing D/H/F March 27
  8. Jeff Simmons Rahal Letterman Racing 17, 17T Rahal Letterman Racing Team  Ethanol D/H/F March 27
  9. Jon Herb Racing Professionals 19, 19T TBA D/H/F March 29
  10. Milka Duno (R) SAMAX Motorsport 23, 23T CITGO Racing D/H/F March 29
  11. Vitor Meira Panther Racing 4, 4T Delphi Panther Dallara D/H/F April 3
  12. Kosuke Matsuura Panther Racing 55, 55T Panasonic Dallara D/H/F April 3
  13. Danica Patrick Andretti Green Racing 7, 7T Motorola D/H/F April 3
  14. Tony Kanaan Andretti Green Racing 11, 11T Team 7-Eleven D/H/F April 3
  15. Marco Andretti Andretti Green Racing 26, 26T NYSE Group D/H/F April 3
  16. Dario Franchitti Andretti Green Racing 27, 27T Canadian Club D/H/F April 3
  17. Michael Andretti Andretti Green Racing 39, 39T Motorola/Jim Beam D/H/F April 3
  18. TBA Vision Racing TBA, TBA (T) D/H/F April 3
  19. TBA Beck Motorsports 43 TBA D/H/F April 3
  20. TBA Beck Motorsports 98 CURB Records D/H/F April 3 More ...
04/04/07
cc
Monte Carlo Resort and Casino Joins RSPORTS  In preparation for the approaching 2007 Champ Car season, RSPORTS is pleased to announce a partnership with Monte Carlo Resort & Casino for the Vegas Grand Prix, a three-day festival of speed and entertainment.   

The RSPORTS team will be hosted by this AAA Four Diamond Las Vegas resort, offering an escape from the busy schedule of the inaugural Vegas race weekend. Meanwhile, Monte Carlo executives and guests will be joining RSPORTS at the downtown street circuit to enjoy the excitement of the Vegas Grand Prix. The Monte Carlo Resort & Casino brand will be exhibited on Justin Wilson’s No. 9 CDW/RSPORTS car as he races for the 2007 Vanderbilt Cup. Hotel guests and fans alike will be able to see this car up close at the Monte Carlo Resort & Casino, as the No. 9 CDW show car will be on display this week, Wednesday through Sunday.  

“I am very pleased to welcome Monte Carlo as a partner for the Vegas Grand Prix,” said Dan Pettit, RSPORTS team co-owner. “They have a winning reputation of high quality service and style which is an ideal complement to the Champ Car World Series. We enjoy working with local partners to bring them closer to the racing action and we are looking forward to bringing Monte Carlo guests to the RSPORTS hospitality tent and team paddock.” More ...

04/04/07
industry news
Kia to introduce Soul in late 2008  Kia Motors America (KMA) will add another vehicle to its line-up in 2008, the Soul crossover utility vehicle (CUV). Announced at this year's North American International Auto Show in Detroit that it will become a production vehicle, the Soul was originally unveiled as a concept car during the 2006 Detroit show. A collaborative effort between Kia's design studio in California and design studio in Korea, it will go on sale at the end of 2008.

"The Soul's aggressive and youthful styling is raising the bar for vehicles in its segment, and we are excited that it will be joining the ever-expanding Kia line-up in 2008," said Len Hunt, executive vice president and COO of KMA. "The flexibility, function and utility this vehicle provides, as well as its dynamic appearance, further demonstrate Kia's commitment to producing vehicles that create passion with consumers."

Exterior Design with Attitude
The architecture of the Soul's stance is reflective of its sporting and confident character. A wrap-around windshield, muscular wheel flares, stylish front headlamps and a sloped roofline help convey Soul's athletic appearance, which is geared toward satisfying customers with an active lifestyle. The Soul's exterior exudes an athletic presence, while several design cues lend a svelte, edgy look indicative of urban attitude.

Atop the sloped roofline is an automatic panoramic sun/moon roof. The front section of the panoramic roof slides backward and fits over of the rear section allowing for open-air driving with unobstructed views for both front and rear passengers. Also up top are roof racks integrated into the Soul's design with rails for sliding objects forward and backward. More ...

04/04/07
cca
Atlantic Series set to kick off in Las Vegas  INDIANAPOLIS – It’s certainly fitting that what’s expected to be one of the most thrilling seasons in the storied history of the Atlantic Championship will begin this weekend in the entertainment capital of the world.

The downtown streets of Las Vegas, Nevada will host Round 1 of the 12-race 2007 Cooper Tires Presents The Champ Car Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda, April 6-8 at the Vegas Grand Prix (tape-delayed broadcast on ESPN2 at 5 p.m. ET on Friday, April 13). And while it will be tough to match the glitter and the neon lights that is Vegas, the star-studded field of the Atlantic Championship will certainly do its best to add to the wattage in an action-packed weekend of racing and entertainment.

Equaling its largest field from last season with some of the top developing racers and series champions from across the globe, the 34th season of Atlantic racing will kick off the season in style. A total of 28 entries are expected to take the first green flag of the year from a standing start on Sunday afternoon at the new 2.440-mile street circuit, making it the largest Atlantic field since last year's season opener at Long Beach when 28 cars roared to the starting line. The international appeal of the Atlantic series will also be evident as 11 countries will be represented this weekend, yet the domestic talent is definitely on solid footing as  half of the racers in action at Vegas call the United States home. More ...

04/04/07
cca
Alan Sciuto Racing formed for full Atlantic season  (Orange, Calif.) – Sometimes, the race off the track is as fascinating as what happens when the green flag is dropped on 30 Champ Car Atlantic racers.

Over the last weekend, while he was competing in a shifter kart race at the CalSpeed Karting Center in Fontana, Calif., Alan Sciuto learned his signed deal to contest his second season in Champ Car Atlantic had fallen apart – one week before the season kicked off at the inaugural Vegas Grand Prix Fueled by VISA.

Most people would have immediately begun working the phones, and Alan and his team did, but this wasn’t to call other teams and see if another ride could be secured. By Tuesday evening, Alan Sciuto Racing had been formed, a car purchased, sponsorship arranged, personnel hired, and the team was ready to compete in Las Vegas. In addition, the team secured the services of renowned engineer Gerald Tyler for the season.

Sponsorship will come from the RoomStore, Arizona’s leading furniture retailer, as well as Sparco USA, and W.S. Deans, makers of the Deans Ultra Plug. More ...

04/04/07
cc
Champ Car's history in Las Vegas  Major league auto racing made its debut in Las Vegas in 1954 when a hundred-mile National Championship Race (the series which evolved into what Champ Car is now) was run. The one mile dirt track it was held on was a former horse racing track found behind the old Thunderbird hotel. The race victor was Jimmy Bryan, who won the last four races that season and the 1954 championship. After that initial appearance Champ Cars did not return to Vegas for several years, but racing did not disappear. In 1966, the Stardust Raceway opened for business. The 3-mile road course hosted major auto races from 1966-68 with Bobby Unser winning the one and only Champ Car race there in 1968. Champ Car staged two races in 1983 and 1984, with Caesars Parking lot configured into a modified oval consisting of five turns. The unique design produced some exciting racing, with Mario Andretti winning in 1983 and Tom Sneva out dueling Al Unser Sr. in the 1984 season finale, in which Andretti clinched the season championship by surviving a spectacular late-race spin with John Paul Jr. It's still possible to take a lap around the old racing circuit, but you had better have your wallet out as the Forum Shops at Caesars were erected on what used to be the front straightaway. In 1996 Las Vegas Motor Speedway opened and hosted a wide variety of racing series, holding Champ Car races in both 2004 and 2005. The 2007 Vegas Grand Prix will mark the first time Champ Cars have graced the streets of the Las Vegas in the historic downtown area.
04/04/07
f1
Ferrari to race unchanged car at Sepang - Massa  (GMM)  Felipe Massa has offered Ferrari's rivals a glimmer of hope ahead of the Malaysian grand prix by revealing that the Italian squad will race an unmodified car at Sepang.

The Brazilian's teammate Kimi Raikkonen won the Australian grand prix in dominant style.

But unlike its determined rivals including McLaren, Massa said on Wednesday that the F2007 to be used this weekend features no new parts compared with the season opener in Melbourne last month.

"So from this aspect, with the same package, our performance level cannot improve," he said. More ...

04/04/07
f1
Malaysia not worried about Singapore threat - minister  (GMM)  The Malaysian government has stepped up its rhetoric about the prospect of a grand prix in nearby Singapore.

Despite insisting that the Sepang race is not nervous about Singapore's intensifying negotiations with F1 chiefs about a city night race to be held as soon as next year, Malaysian sports minister Datuk Azalina Othman Said sounded defiant at a press conference in the capital Kuala Lumpur on Wednesday.

She said Singapore posed no threat because Malaysia has the "best" circuit in the region.

"I have no concern and I pity Singapore," the minister added.

04/04/07
f1
STR sent 'signal' to laid back Speed - Berger  (GMM) Toro Rosso chiefs deliberately made Scott Speed wait for his 2007 contract in order to instill in him a more "professional attitude", according to team co-owner Gerhard Berger.

The Austrian, who was a ten time winner in formula one, confirmed speculation to the 'APA' news agency that the long delay was a ploy in reaction to Californian Speed's laid back approach to his rookie season at the pinnacle of motor sport.

"We wanted to send a signal that we do not necessarily roll out the red carpet for drivers," Berger said.

Another 'signal' for Speed may have been the winter tests of Sebastien Bourdais, despite the French driver's contractual ties for 2007 in the American Champ Car series.

04/04/07
f1
Q and A with Pascal Vasselon  
Q. Looking ahead to Malaysia, what are the main considerations?

Pascal Vasselon, Toyota - Senior General Manager Chassis: Sepang is an interesting track because it's hard for every single component of the car. It's hard on the tires because of the temperatures and the surface, which is quite rough. It's hard on the cooling package and the brakes and it's demanding in terms of set-up because you have slow corners and high-speed corners.

What is especially interesting at the start of the season is that Malaysia helps us understand the nature of the main performance issues. What I mean by that is that normally you have two main factors in terms of performance - aerodynamics and tires.

At the start of the season there are always question marks about the warming up of tires and their temperature range. That's because in winter testing we run in lower temperatures than the tires are designed for.

Melbourne is also a place where, historically, the tire warm-up is difficult because it's never that hot and the surface is quite smooth. Sepang is therefore the first race that really tells you how the car behaves without warming up issues. When you go there you know that the tires will work so you get a better idea of the total performance package. More ...

04/04/07
f1
Q and A with Adrian Sutil  
Q. Another race track you've never visited. How do you prepare for this?

Adrian Sutil: As I have only been to a handful of tracks on the calendar, I prepare for most races in the same way at the moment. Before the race week, I try and learn the circuit layout by playing F1 simulation computer games and look at previous years' data to fine-tune the approach.

When I get to the track, I also walk the circuit with my engineer, looking at the corners and the track surface, looking for the lines and any bumps that you'd need to avoid. But at the end of the day, you just have to get on with it and after a few laps you have to be OK.

Q. Last year you completed three Friday practice sessions as a test driver, now you're a fully-fledged race driver, how important are the Friday sessions for you now? More ...

04/04/07
nascar
Biffle/Wallace leads COT testing at Richmond  UPDATE Kenny Wallace put his Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet atop the leaderboard in the night practice session Tuesday at Richmond International Raceway.  Wallace turned a lap of 122.416 mph around the three-quarter mile oval.  Rounding out the top five in practice were Richard Childress Racing's Clint Bowyer (122.399), Hendrick Motorsports' Jeff Gordon (122.360), Bill Davis Racing's Dave Blaney (122.095) and Roush Fenway Racing's Matt Kenseth (121.836).

04/03/07 Greg Biffle led the first test session Tuesday afternoon at Richmond International Raceway as teams tested NASCAR's out of date 1950's technology Car of Tomorrow (sic) on the 0.75-mile race track. Biffle posted a speed of 121.545 mph in his Roush Fenway Racing Ford, followed by Richard Childress Racing's Clint Bowyer (121.256), Chip Ganassi Racing's Reed Sorenson (121.245), Hendrick Motorsports' Jeff Gordon (121.174) and Valvoline Evernham Racing's Scott Riggs (121.147).
04/04/07
gp2
Tung lands GP2 seat  BCN Competicion was so impressed with German F3 champion king Ho-Pin Tung, who has already exceeded expectations, that it signed him to fill its vacant second seat.

The 24-year old Dutch-Chinese driver will slot in alongside F1 refugee Sakon Yamamoto in an all-rookie line-up, filling the void created by Ricardo Risatti's withdrawal last week. Tung, who has tested an F1 car with Williams and produced Team China's best results in A1 Grand Prix, becomes the first driver of Chinese origin to race in the GP2 Series.

I am very happy to have the opportunity to compete with BCN," he said, "I am grateful to my private sponsors, who supported this huge step forward in my career. To get to F1, as every young driver knows, GP2 is the best launching series. And it is my ambition as long as I am a racing driver to become the first ever Chinese F1 driver. “

“The first half of the season will be hard for me, as there is no more pre-season testing, and this means I might have a disadvantage compared to all the other drivers," he confirmed, "I will have to learn quickly, but I am confident that, in the second part of the season, I will meet expectations and come up with good results." More ...

04/04/07
nascar
Earnhardt's Team Captures Pit Crew Challenge  Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s over-the-wall crew grabbed the Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge victory in Sunday's Nextel Cup event at Martinsville Speedway. This is the #8 crew's first win of the season in the weekly pit crew competition, which recognizes the team spending the least amount of time on pit road at each Nextel Cup event. Earnhardt's Budweiser Chevrolet spent 281.110 seconds on pit lane during the Goody's Cool Orange 500. "I've got a great bunch of guys and they're as good as they get on pit lane," said Earnhardt. "Everyone at DEI worked really hard to build us some great new cars, and the crew on Sunday was at their best. I lost the lead on the track, and they got it back for me on pit lane." Earnhardt added, "It's a great feeling to have that kind of confidence in your guys. It seemed like that was the easiest way for me to pass people. Come in to pit lane in fourth place, and leave in second." Each week, Checkers/Rally's awards the winning team with a cash prize of $11,000. The #8 pit crew includes: Brian "Hootie" Chase (jackman), Shawn Ward (front-tire carrier), D.J. Copp (front-tire changer), Erik Wakeland (rear-tire carrier), Greg Burkhart (rear-tire changer), Jeff Clark (gasman), Craig Lund (catch can) and Jay Guarneri (windshield). The team's crew chief is Tony Eury Jr. and the pit crew coordinator is Walt Smith.

An additional $111,150 will be presented to the pit crew with the most wins at the completion of the 36-race Nextel Cup schedule. To win the Checkers/Rally's Double Drive-Thru Challenge, teams are required to finish on the lead lap while spending the least amount of time on pit road. Checkers/Rally's is in its third season as title sponsor for the pit crew challenge. Checkers/Rally's is the Official Burger and Drive-Thru Restaurant of NASCAR, more info at checkers.com.

04/04/07
nascar
Seattle 2nd major blow to NASCAR in row  UPDATE TV ratings are down for Nextel Cup races, International Speedway Corp., pulled the plug on its proposed track in Washington state and empty seats have been visible at some race this season. Has NASCAR fallen off? "All sports have growth spurts and reach plateaus at various times," said John Saunders, ISC's executive vice president and chief operating officer. "NASCAR is not unique. What is unique is that this is NASCAR's first time." Saunders spoke on a conference call Tuesday with investor analysts as company officials discussed first-quarter earnings. ISC, run by the France family that also runs NASCAR, operates 12 tracks that host 19 Cup races, including at Daytona, Martinsville, Richmond, California and Phoenix. Monday night, ISC announced it dropped plans to build a $368 million race track near Bremerton, Wash., after legislators planned changes to a financing package. Saunders called the changes, which he did not reveal, "unacceptable to ISC" and that those changes would have "a significant negative impact on the project's financial model." Said ISC President Lesa France Kennedy in a statement: "Any decision to execute on growth opportunities is guided by the fundamental principal of building long-term value for our shareholders." ISC officials say they remain interested in building a track in the Northwest and would still consider Washington. ISC officials also are studying the feasibility of a race track in Denver but that track, if ever developed, wouldn't be ready until 2012. ISC ended its attempts to build a track on Staten Island in December, although it remains interested in that area. With no new track ready to be built soon, ISC officials said on the conference call they had no plans to move a Cup race from one track to another. Saunders also said TV ratings for Cup races are down about 14% from this time last year. He said Busch TV ratings are down about 9% and truck ratings are up about 3%. Saunders said most of the drop in Cup ratings came with the Daytona 500. Last year's Daytona ratings were artificially boosted, Saunders said, by the Winter Olympics, which preceded the race. Ratings also were down for the California and Bristol races. Despite these examples, Saunders said, "we think the industry outlook is bright,'' noting this is the first year of the eight-year TV package that pays NASCAR about $4.5 billion, the return of ESPN to broadcasting races and diversity initiatives to attract new fans, particularly the Hispanic audience. Roanoke Times

04/03/07 The Seattle failure is the second major blow to ISC in the last few months. It also gave up on plans to build a New York City track on Staten Island.  Most people will view this as NASCAR's getting rejected in the biggest city of the East Coast and one of the biggest cities on the West Coast.

Where's the love?

Maybe NASCAR isn't as popular in the blue states as it thought. Or maybe it's a different kind of politics, one to do with begging for public money in major markets when in fact ISC has so much cash and is making so much profit they can afford to build the entire thing themselves.  The Washington State politicians are smart enough to see the greed and have sent NASCAR/ISC packing.....just like NY City did.

Rejection in major markets.  TV Ratings down.  Attendance flat or down.  Seems the shine has come off NASCAR's luster a bit.

04/04/07
f1
Latest F1 news in brief  
Monaco most prized sports destination - poll
Spyker fight about money - STR's Berger
More carmakers unlikely for F1 - Ecclestone
Senna tops Honda fans survey
Former British F1 driver dies at 91
Schumacher swims with whales
Bridgestone aims to keep white groove marking
Heidfeld not worried about expiring BMW deal
McLaren will bounce back in 2007 - Hakkinen
BMW must solve problems - Niki Lauda
Jordan's son a catwalk model
04/03/07
Track News
'07 Long Beach Motorsports Walk of Fame inductees  LONG BEACH, Calif. -- The City of Long Beach will honor racecar legends Brian Redman and the Newman/Haas Racing Team, led by Paul Newman and Carl Haas, and Chris Pook, the co-founder of the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach, at the Second Annual Long Beach Motorsports Walk of Fame induction ceremony. The event will take place on Thursday April 12, during the annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach week.

"Legends. Absolute legends," said Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster, who will be presenting the awards to the honorees. "Brian Redman won the first Grand Prix in Long Beach, and he can still drive better than folks half his age. Paul Newman and Carl Haas have captured more Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach wins than any other team. And Chris Pook made the Grand Prix happen in Long Beach, which was, in many ways, the catalyst for our city's renaissance." More ...

04/03/07
cc
alms
Fernandez named LBGP Runway honorary host  INDIANAPOLIS, IN Adrian Fernandez's first Champ Car race was at Long Beach in 1993. He returns this year in a dual role as team owner/co- driver of one of Acura's new American Le Mans Series entries and as honorary host of CARA Charities' fifth annual Raceway Rendezvous on Friday, April 13.

"Long Beach is a special event there is so much racing history there," noted Adrian. "And CARA's creativity with their annual charity event makes it a special oasis in a busy weekend. It is a friendly and informal night of fun for drivers, team owners and race fans. It is one of the more enjoyable events of the year and I will have fun hosting it."

This year's "Castaways of G-Force Island" will take place on board Hornblower's SS Endless Dreams. The cruise of Long Beach harbor will feature an on-board casino night with live and silent auctions. Some of the items up for bid include a six bottle set of the sold out 2003 Quintessa Rutherford; a framed driver- autographed collage of tickets from the 2006 season; a weekend stay in the Hyatt Regency; brunch for two at Spaghettini; a nights stay at the Long Beach Hilton, and a weekend stay at the Long Beach Hyatt Regency. In addition, CARA partners Champ Car and the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach have donated special VIP access packages that include items unavailable to the public like time in the Champ Car starters stand for race warm-up, overcrew passes, victory circle access, and passes to the exclusive Ocean Club. "We will continue to get auction items from now through the race weekend and expect our final list to surpass last year's in variety and individuality," said Vicki Faivre, president of CARA Charities. More ...

04/03/07
Industry News
Toyota’s sales jump while GM, Ford fall  The best monthly sales performance ever for Toyota and gains by fellow Japanese automakers Honda and Nissan helped the industry in March top last year's best month for U.S. sales despite declines by GM, Ford and DaimlerChrysler.

Toyota's U.S. sales jumped 11.7 percent in March compared with a year ago, boosted by record hybrid sales and strong overall car sales. Industrywide, light vehicle sales by major automakers rose 0.8 percent to 1.54 million, Autodata Corp. said Tuesday.

The overall rise in U.S. sales came despite GM and DaimlerChrysler's sales falling about 4 percent each, and Ford posting a 9 percent drop. Ford still held off Toyota for the No. 2 U.S. sales spot for the month, and Ford regained from GM the claim to having the nation's top-selling pickup truck, even though F-series sales fell 15.1 percent.

The numbers come as the Detroit Three have seen Asian rivals led by Toyota capture growing shares of the U.S. market. Autodata's figures show GM, the world's largest automaker, had 22.4 percent of the U.S. market in March, with Ford holding 17.1 percent and Toyota with 15.7 percent. Still, GM and Ford said sales of their newer vehicles generally improved.

Jesse Toprak, chief economist for the Edmunds.com auto Web site, said the Japanese automakers will continue to prop up the broader sales picture. At year's end, he estimates GM's share at 24 percent, Toyota's at 17 percent and Ford's at 15 percent.

"The trend for the rest of the year will continue, but the growth for Toyota will slow down somewhat," Toprak said.  More at Newsday

04/03/07
ga
First Pirelli test successful  ROME, Georgia – Pirelli engineers have concluded their opening round of testing for the 2008 Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Special Reserve and have achieved favorable results. Race teams, drivers and series officials already have their eye on next year as evidenced by this week's test sessions of the new Pirelli P Zero tires that all Daytona Prototype and GT cars will use beginning with next year's Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Several teams were on hand for two days of testing at Homestead-Miami Speedway this past week that culminated in an additional 2 days of work a few hundred miles to the north at Daytona International Speedway on the road course layout. The teams combined to run several thousand miles over the four days of testing and came away from the sessions impressed with the performance of the new tires. Many cars did 40- to 50-lap runs, and the Pirellis earned positive reports in their first time on Rolex Series machinery from all involved. More ...

04/03/07
cc
Rahal hopes Spring Break in Vegas is memorable  LAS VEGAS --- Thoughts of senior year Spring Break conjure up great memories of sleeping in, relaxation and beaches for many teenagers but for 18-year old New Albany (Ohio) High School senior Graham Rahal the learning continues – and at a pace approaching 180 mph.  Although he isn’t old enough to gamble or even rent a car, Rahal will be enjoying his Spring Break in Las Vegas where he will pilot his No. 2 Medi | Zone race car in his Champ Car World Series debut in the season-opening Vegas Grand Prix, April 6-8. 

“For me and for the Medi | Zone team to go into the Las Vegas race weekend is going to be very difficult,” said Rahal, who will make his series debut with Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing (NHLR) as a teammate to three-time series champion Sebastien Bourdais.  “It’s the first race of the season, it’s my first race in a Champ Car, it’s a new track and we’ve got a new car.  I certainly believe our team is the best prepared for Las Vegas and I think that, for all of us, it’s going to be a learning experience.  All we need to do is cover all the bases that we know how to cover and we’ve done that.  Not only just in Las Vegas but the first three races are going to be a learning experience to see what we have to do to make it through all three because that’s going to be a huge part of the season.” More ...

04/03/07
cc
Imperial Capital Bank to sponsor Figge  Oxnard, CA  – Pacific Coast Motorsports is pleased to announce their partnership with Imperial Capital Bank as the primary sponsor of Alex Figge’s #29 Imperial Capital Bank/DP01 Champ Car at the first three races of the 2007 Champ Car World Series season.

Imperial Capital Bank provides customers with high performance personal and business banking products and services through its retail branch locations. In addition, Imperial Capital Bank offers real estate loans for multi-family and commercial properties as well as entertainment loans through their specialized lending divisions.

“We are proud to welcome Imperial Capital Bank and honored to represent them in the Champ Car World Series.  Their high performance banking and our high performance racing team go hand in hand and we hope this is the beginning of a long relationship,” commented PCM team director, Tyler Tadevic. “Imperial Capital Bank recognizes Champ Car racing as a formidable advertising venue and we are thrilled to be the vehicle to maximize the exposure of the Imperial Capital Bank brand.” More ...

04/03/07
cc
Tagliani ready for season opener  Unlike the majority of the drivers who will be competing in the Vegas Grand Prix this weekend, RSPORTS driver and Las Vegas resident Alex Tagliani has a unique advantage in preparation for the Champ Car Season Opener by taking his training to the streets.  

Most people do not think of race car drivers as athletes. That by driving a fancy race car around for two hours on a Sunday is more of a joy ride then an actual test to the physical and mental endurance one might have.  

However, that is not true; drivers are taking on unbelievable challenges every time they get behind the wheel. In each corner of a race track, Tagliani’s body is exposed to three-times the force of gravity. A driver’s steering effort is the big thing. Not only do they have to control the 1800 pound race car, but they also have to turn it. Imagine when a driver is turning left that off to the right of the steering wheel is a one-foot bar that has 35 pounds hanging off the end. That is the kind of force they are working against when turning the wheel. To get a feeling of what kind of speed these guys are running, on an average Champ Car street course, a Champ Car driver is negotiating a corner that average people would take at 20-30 mph at 70 mph. More ...
04/03/07
irl
Matsuura penalized for improper comments  IndyCar Series officials have fined Panther Racing's Kosuke Matsuura an undisclosed amount for using inappropriate language during interviews at the April 1 Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

Matsuura was penalized for violating Rule 8-3-A of the IndyCar Series rulebook, improper conduct. He issued an apology through a statement released by Panther Racing.

"I really wanted to apologize for what I said during my ESPN and IMS Radio Network interviews," he said. "I was upset about the crash, but I didn't need to use the language I did. Since the next race is at my home country, I wanted to return to Japan with good result and enjoy the Indy Japan race, so I am very disappointed with what happened in the first two races. I want to apologize to my sponsors, ESPN, IMS Radio Network,  the IndyCar Series an all the race fans who were watching on Sunday. Everybody on my Panther team was frustrated, but I should have expressed my disappointment in a better way. I'm sorry."

Matsuura visited the Indy Racing League offices to meet with Brian Barnhart when he returned from St. Petersburg to express his regret for the comment immediately.

"Kosuke was frustrated, like all of us were, about what happened on the first lap of the race," Panther co-owner John Barnes said. "He knows he should use better word choice in the future, and a pair of interviews don't reflect Kosuke's character. He has the support of the entire Panther family."

04/03/07
alms
Tomas Enge injury update  UPDATE Tomas Enge (a native of the Czech Republic living in Monaco) will undergo surgery to repair his broken left elbow on Friday, April 6. The Petersen Motorsports/White Lightning Racing driver, who was injured in an accident while leading the GT2 class at the Sports Car Challenge at St. Petersburg American Le Mans Series race, will travel from Bayfront Medical Center in St. Petersburg, Fla. to Indianapolis, Ind. for the surgery. Due to a partially collapsed lung, Enge cannot be transported by air. Therefore, the four-time American Le Mans Series race winner will travel in team owner Michael Petersen's motorhome to Indianapolis. Following the 24 hour drive from Florida to Indiana, Enge is scheduled to arrive in Indianapolis on Thursday, April 5. He will then be admitted to Methodist Hospital and will have his first face-to-face visit with Dr. Terry Trammell. Trammell, the renowned orthopedic surgeon who has helped scores of professional race drivers return to the cockpit after serious injury, has reviewed Enge's X-Rays and is preparing for the surgery. Once the surgical procedures have been completed, Enge will remain in Indianapolis for rehabilitation.

Despite what is, at times, overpowering soreness from the impact, Enge's spirits and attitude remain high. He is excited about moving on to the next level of his rehabilitation and ultimate homecoming with the Dale White-managed team. He will return to the No. 31 MMPIE/PAWS/Petersen Holdings/Michelin Ferrari F430 GT upon the clearance of Dr. Trammell. More ...

04/03/07
cc
CDW Gears Up for New Season with No. 9 car  VERNON HILLS, Ill. – CDW Corporation (NASDAQ:CDWC), a leading provider of technology products to business, government and education, and primary sponsor of the No. 9 CDW/RSPORTS car driven by Justin Wilson, is pleased to kick off the 2007 Champ Car World Series season by announcing its returning and new co-sponsors.

Excited to start the new season April 8 in Las Vegas, CDW brings its reputation for technology expertise and high-speed delivery to the racetrack for the second consecutive year. Last season CDW’s sponsorship involved much more than just a logo on the car. The company was actively involved with the racing team, providing technology equipment and advice to the RSPORTS (formerly RuSPORT) team. In addition to supplying the No. 9 CDW/RSPORTS car with cutting-edge technology products from some of its leading business partners, CDW provided the team with IT expertise and technology solutions to increase the team’s competitive advantage on the race track.

“CDW provides technology products and expertise that enable RSPORTS to perform crucial, in-depth analysis of race data and car performance,” said Mark J. Gambill, vice president, marketing, CDW. “This sponsorship gives us a unique opportunity to demonstrate how we help organizations achieve their goals through the use of information technology. The team performed well last year, and we are looking forward to another exciting race season.” More ...

04/03/07
cc
Champ Car races to be broadcast in China  The Champ Car World Series will kick off a historic 2007 season this weekend in Las Vegas, one that will see America’s top open-wheel racing series become the first U.S. sports organization to contest a regular-season event in China.

Now the Chinese fans can follow every lap of the action leading up to the inaugural Champ Car Grand Prix of China as the series has reached an agreement for Champ Car World Series races to be carried nationwide throughout China.

“This agreement was an integral part of our strategy surrounding the Zhuhai event and it is very important for Champ Car to be able to showcase our series to the fans before we get in the country,” said Champ Car President Steve Johnson. “The potential reach of this growing network is amazing and we expect that the coverage will go a long way toward priming the fans for our inaugural event there.” More ...

04/03/07
cca
Polestar announces 2-car Atlantic lineup  CHARDON, Ohio – A returning series star and a seasoned professional racer highlight the 2007 driver lineup for Polestar Racing Group in the Cooper Tires Presents The Champ Car Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda.

Entering its fifth year as team in Atlantic competition, the Polestar squad will rely on its experience and savvy this season against the tough international series field.

Helping to navigate the waters will be former Atlantic and Champ Car standout driver Ronnie Bremer, who returns to the Polestar stable. Bremer joined the team during the 2004 Atlantic season and led the Chardon, Ohio-based squad to its first win that season in Denver. The 28-year-old native of Copenhagen, Denmark finished fifth in the Atlantic Championship and second in the Rookie of the Year standings with Polestar in ’04 before graduating to Champ Car. Bremer competed for both Dale Coyne Racing and the HVM team in the 2005 Champ Car World Series, scoring seven top-10 finishes in 12 races. After making one Atlantic start last season for Polestar, finishing 14th at Montreal, Bremer is back with the team this season looking to fight for race wins and poles, the coveted series title and the $2 million champion’s Champ Car bonus. More ...

04/03/07
nascar
ISC profits plunge almost 20%  International Speedway Corp. today reported lower revenue and earnings for its first fiscal quarter that ended Feb. 28, with officials citing lower television rights fees.

Total revenues for the first quarter decreased to $185.2 million, compared to $193.9 million in the prior-year period, while operating income was $65.8 million in the period down 16.2%, compared to $78.5 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2006. Net income was $35.8 million down 19%, or 67 cents per diluted share, compared to net income of $44.1 million, or 83 cents per diluted share, in the prior year.

"We are pleased to report solid revenue and earnings for the first quarter, despite the year-over-year decline in broadcast revenue due to the start of NASCAR's new eight-year combined television agreements," ISC President Lesa France Kenned said. "We hosted several successful events during the first quarter and posted a nearly double-digit increase in corporate sponsorship revenue.

04/03/07
wsr
Renault series cancels Turkish event  The World Series by Renault has cancelled the proposed round at Istanbul Park. Initially planned for 23-24 June, the fourth round of the year now looks likely to be held elsewhere. A decision is expected within the next few days.
04/03/07
NASCAR
Top Ten TUMS Moments From Martinsville  The sixth stop of the 2007 season at Martinsville Speedway once again had the stars of the Nextel Cup Series experiencing several indigestion-causing incidents, from failing to make the race to late-race crashes. Each weekend, PRN lead anchor Doug Rice picks the Top 10 TUMS Moments from that week's racing activities. For the sixth week of the NEXTEL Cup season, top TUMS honors go to: 10. Bobby Labonte, who had a good day going when he spun and ended up in the wall. 9. Every driver, crew member and media person who ate a Martinsville hot dog this weekend. 8. Richard Childress and Robby Gordon, for their ongoing, indigestion-causing sponsorship battles with NASCAR. 7. Michael Waltrip's season of misery continues as he misses his fifth straight race. 6. Ward Burton crashes his primary car in practice and the native Virginian heads home early. 5. Bill Davis, whose Toyotas both qualified well but suffered problems only to finish 37th and 38th. 4. Jeff Gordon, who was denied a chance to tie Dale Earnhardt's victory total by his own teammate. 3. Casey Mears, who dropped seven spots in the Driver's Standings after his 42nd place finish. 2. Dale Jarrett spins only to have the right rear tire come off and actually travel further down the racetrack than his race car. 1. Kevin Harvick, who saw his day go up in smoke - literally - when a fire in his car filled his cockpit up with smoke and forced him to park the car while they put out the flames.
04/03/07
irl
cc
George's destruction of open wheel racing  Just how much damage has Tony George's decision to create the IRL caused open wheel racing in the USA? Consider this - Through 1995 CART had elevated the sport to new highs. Still riding on that high the IRL's opening race at Disney World in 1996 drew a 2.2 rating on ABC. CART's opening round at Homestead drew a 2.1, also on ABC. The Indy 500 that year got a 6.6 and CART's US 500 at Michigan that same Memorial Day recorded a 2.6 on ESPN. Since then the split caused by the IRL has done its damage and destroyed open wheel racing to the point where today the IRL or Champ Car are happy with a pathetic 1.0 rating. And guys like Tony George, John Barnes and AJ Foyt still don't think a merger is necessary. Imagine that!
04/03/07
Industry News
GM's sales climb 25% in China  General Motors Corp. and its joint venture partners said Tuesday their combined sales in China jumped 25 percent in the first quarter, a boon for the U.S. automaker struggling to revive sales at home.

GM is the No. 1 seller of autos in China, the world's second-biggest -- and fastest-growing -- vehicle market.

The company said its sales in China totaled 291,588 vehicles in the first three months of the year. In March alone, it moved 100,538 units, just the second time single-month sales have topped 100,000, it said in a release.

04/03/07
nascar
Toyota NASCAR mechanic murdered  Team Red Bull started their day with a moment of silence for mechanic Jimmy Sprinkle, 44, who was gunned down outside his farm in Love, N.C. Sprinkle had been with the #83 team for about a year and previously worked for former NCTS Champion Ted Musgrave's team.

Sprinkle had seen someone coming down his driveway Saturday night and went outside to investigate. He was shot once in the chest and died at Iredell Memorial.

Alexander County investigators and State Bureau of Investigation agents will not comment on motive are believed to have found the shooter's vehicle, a white 1980s model Monte Carlo with a dark blue top. More ...

04/03/07
f1
Latest F1 news in brief  
Renault unlikely to win in '07 - Fisichella
Cool Kimi calms optimism before Sepang
De la Rosa - I started too late
Ageing Sepang tough on tires - Alonso
Renault to run tribute for late sponsor
F1 names miss out at Laureus awards
Mansell's sons move up to F3
'Superleague' to unite racing and soccer
Toyota plans 'major update' for Spain
Heidfeld still critical of BMW's Friday policy
Schu plays match for local soccer team
Albers slams Aguri for Honda 'copy'
De la Rosa defends party animal Raikkonen
04/03/07
nascar
ISC strikes out again in Washington  International Speedway Corp. has given up the fight to build a NASCAR track in Kitsap County.

ISC officials said they became aware of proposed modifications to their bill in the Legislature that would render it unacceptable.
 
"We're not going to discuss the specific changes that were proposed to us that made us come to this decision," said Lenny Santiago, spokesman for ISC. "As a public company, we need to be accountable to our shareholders."

Grant Lynch, president of Great Western Sports, a subsidiary of ISC, said the company had already made a number of concessions to the legislation, but various people were proposing several additional modifications before moving the bill forward.

"These additional changes to the legislation were unacceptable and would have had a significant negative impact on our financial model for the speedway development," Lynch said in a prepared statement. "Therefore we have decided to no longer pursue the speedway development at the current location." Kitsapsun.com

04/03/07
nascar
Said confirmed for Sonoma NASCAR race  Road-course specialist Boris Said will compete in the Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Nextel Cup event at Infineon Raceway, June 22-24. This will mark Said’s eighth consecutive NASCAR Cup effort on the Sonoma Valley road course.  Said will pilot the No. 60 SoBe No Fear Energy Drink Ford Fusion over the 10-turn, 1.99-mile road course. The Carlsbad (Calif.) resident has posted three top-10 efforts in NASCAR Cup in Sonoma since 2000, including two sixth-place efforts (2003-2004). He also started on the pole in 2003.
04/03/07
cc
Team Australia begins championship chase  Team Australia drivers Will Power and Simon Pagenaud begin their championship charge in the 2007 Champ Car World Series on the streets of Las Vegas in Nevada, United States this weekend.

Power served his Champ Car apprenticeship with distinction last season, finishing sixth in the championship and winning the Roshfrans Rookie of the Year title in his first full season in Champ Car.

Like Power, Team Australia has come on in leaps and bounds. 2007 is the Aussie Vineyards squad’s third season in the Champ Car World Series and it’s best chance yet for race wins and championship success. Team Australia has set a strong pace in pre-season testing in its pair of new DP01 Champ Cars, the new car bringing a more level playing field to the category for 2007. More ...

04/03/07
cc
Halliday signs with Conquest Racing  [Editor's Note: So much for this report from a European newspaper that said Halliday will also be racing in Porsche Supercup, unless he does both, and hence will be a busy man.  In addition, Matt Halliday will be re-joining Ford's major V8 Supercar team at both 2007 V8 Supercar endurance races.]

New Zealand racing driver Matt Halliday has been confirmed to contest the highly competitive 2007 Champ Car World Series. Halliday has been signed by Conquest Racing with whom he contested the 2001 Indy Lights Championship. Since making a big impression in that 2001 campaign, Matt has pursued a burning ambition to compete in what has developed into one of the world's top international motor racing series.

His signing follows a recent successful test with Conquest Racing, conducted at the Laguna Seca circuit (California) where he set top ten lap times despite not having driven in any of the other pre-season tests. Contesting the Series was made possible after sponsorship was secured from high profile New Zealand Vodka Company 42 BELOW who have been a personal sponsor of Matt's over recent years. More ...

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