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Brian C.'s Saturday Long Beach Notebook  
Good day for Josef Newgarden in Long Beach.
I had an opportunity to speak with a few Verizon IndyCar Series drivers after today’s qualifying session.  One of the topics I was looking for input on was their opinion on standing starts for tomorrow’s 40th running of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. But more on that shortly…


We’ll start with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing Josef Newgarden, who qualified fourth earlier today, a career-best. Now, you might remember Newgarden started second at Long Beach two years ago during his rookie season. However, keep in mind Newgarden actually qualified seventh, as that weekend numerous Chevrolet teams changed engines, resulting in a shuffled grid. So while the 2012 Long Beach race was a career best start today was a career-best qualifying effort.

You might also remember that Newgarden struggled with his qualifying last season, and two weeks ago started 22nd in the season-opener at St. Petersburg.

I asked the Hendersonville, TN native if there was anything specific that could explain the impressive leap forward. Very confidently, Newgarden said it was simply a function of both he and the team having a “cleaner weekend,” than in St. Pete. More ...

Townsend Bell to drive for KV Racing at Indy  
Townsend Bell
Townsend Bell recorded his best Indianapolis 500 finish of fourth in 2009 with KV Racing Technology. The veteran driver will rejoin the team co-owned by Jimmy Vasser and Kevin Kalkhoven for the 98th running of the 500-Mile Race on May 25 in the Chevrolet-powered No. 6 car with American-based clothier Robert Graham as the primary sponsor.

It will be the eighth start in "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" for Bell, a California native who will join Paul Tracy as analysts on NBCSN's telecast April 13 of the 40th Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. He's earned three top-10 finishes, with a best starting spot of fourth in 2011. More ...

Jack Hawksworth is the real deal  
Jack Hawksworth
Jack Hawksworth is following up his solid St. Pete season opener with an impressive weekend on the streets of Long Beach, starting fifth for Sunday's Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

The Verizon IndyCar Series rookie started the weekend with three solid practices, finishing all three sessions in the top ten. Hawksworth really started turning heads when he earned a P3 in the second practice session.

On Saturday afternoon, the 23-year-old British driver was placed in group two for IndyCar qualifying. He was sixth in the session with a best lap time 1:08.0968, and advanced to round two. More ...
Veach wins Indy Lights pole  
Zach Veach will start from pole tomorrow as he tries to score his second victory of 2014.
Ohio native Zach Veach has won the pole for tomorrow's Long Beach 100. Veach, who won the season opening Indy Lights Series Presented By Cooper Tires race in St. Petersburg, Florida recorded a lap time of 1:15.0074, a mere 0.0275 seconds ahead of second place Gabby Chaves. 2013 Pro Mazda Champion Matthew Brabham was third.

Full results below...

1. Zach Veach
2. Gabby Chaves
3. Matthew Brabham
4. Alex Baron
5. Luiz Razia
6. Jack Harvey
7. Scott Anderson
8. Juan Piedrahita
9. Juan Pablo Garcia
10. Vittorio Ghirelli
11. Zack Meyer
12. Lloyd Read

Long Beach Qualifying Groups, Power tops final practice  
Will Power tops the time sheets for P3.
Morning practice has just wrapped here in Long Beach for the Verizon IndyCar Series. Will Power led the session with Josef Newgarden 2nd and Simon Pagenaud 3rd.

Qualifying will begin at 1:15 p.m. local time. Below are the qualifying groups:

Group 1

#10 Tony Kanaan
#11 Sebastian Bourdais
#14 Takuma Sato
#16 Oriol Servia
#18 Carlos Huertas
#19 Justin Wilson
#20 Mike Conway
#27 James Hinchcliffe
#28 Ryan Hunter-Reay
#67 Josef Newgarden
#83 Charlie Kimball More ...

Chaves tops final Indy Lights practice in LB  
Pos Car Driver C/E/T Time Speed Diff Gap Best Lap Laps
1 5 Chaves, Gabby D/ /C 01:15.0709 94.375 --.---- --.---- 17 19
2 83 Brabham, Matthew (R) D/ /C 01:15.5012 93.837 0.4303 0.4303 17 18
3 4 Baron, Alex (R) D/ /C 01:15.7255 93.559 0.6546 0.2243 14 15
4 26 Veach, Zach D/ /C 01:15.8853 93.362 0.8144 0.1598 14 18
5 7 Razia, Luiz (R) D/ /C 01:16.6433 92.439 1.5724 0.7580 17 17
6 2 Meyer, Zack (R) D/ /C 01:16.8783 92.156 1.8074 0.2350 19 19
7 22 Ghirelli, Vittorio (R) D/ /C 01:16.9474 92.073 1.8765 0.0691 16 16
8 77 Piedrahita, Juan (R) D/ /C 01:17.0801 91.915 2.0092 0.1327 19 19
9 10 Garcia, Juan Pablo D/ /C 01:17.2550 91.707 2.1841 0.1749 17 19
10 42 Harvey, Jack (R) D/ /C 01:17.2655 91.694 2.1946 0.0105 16 16
11 24 Anderson, Scott (R) D/ /C 01:17.3582 91.584 2.2873 0.0927 17 18
12 28 Read, Lloyd (R) D/ /C 01:17.4128 91.520 2.3419 0.0546 17 17
Andretti tribute video  A video tribute of Mario Andretti done by Sam Posey at Thursday night's RRDC event honoring Andretti.  See also our report on the event.

Playmate rides in F1 car with Mario Andretti  Playboy Playmate Pilar Lastra taking a ride around Circuit of the Americas in an F1 car with Mario Andretti driving last year!

Chase Elliott wins 2nd straight  
Chase Elliott
Getty Images for NASCAR
There's a new sheriff in town, and he's barely legal.

With a banzai run in a two-lap dash to the finish of Friday night's NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Darlington Raceway, 18-year-old Chase Elliott muscled his way past Elliott Sadler on the final lap to score his second straight win in his seventh start in the series.

Elliott, who restarted sixth on Lap 146, charged to the front and claimed victory in the VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 in his first event at the fabled 1.366-mile track. The victory was Elliott's second in as many weeks and the second of his career. More ...

Richard Petty adjusting to life alone  Richard Petty is spending his weekends at home mourning the death of his wife instead of his familiar spot at the racetrack. Lynda Petty died last month after battling cancer for several years. She was 72.

"He's doing pretty good, he's used to going to the racetracks and being at the racetracks alone, but he's not used to being at home and being alone," said his son, NASCAR announcer Kyle Petty. "So I've stayed with him some, and my sisters have stayed some. It's just going to take time. They were together 57 years and even though he spent 50 of those 57 years on the road, according to him, at race tracks, it's been a lot harder and a lot tougher (than he thought)." More ...

Larson & Dillon discuss practice incidents  #3-Austin Dillon & #42-Kyle Larson hit the Darlington Raceway wall and gained a Darlington Stripe. Larson's car was damage so bad that the team pulled out the backup car. Comments from both drivers:
Dillon: "Well, Kyle (Larson) came over and asked, 'where did you hit'? I said off Turn 2. He said, me too. I said did you try you try to come off the wall and make it turn? He said exact same thing. So we are just learning, I guess. You get really tight. I felt good into (Turn) 1, and then through the middle, I get tight late around the corner, it just carries speed. Just hit the wall, but I learned a lot right there. Hopefully it doesn't happen again." More ...
Childress Testifies for Biofuels  The Senate Agriculture Committee held a hearing this week on advanced biofuels. Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow of Michigan says advanced biofuels are here now, and they are an important part of the energy title in the recently passed farm bill. One of the witnesses at the hearing was NASCAR team owner Richard Childress who talked about the many benefits of corn-based biofuels, such as the higher fuel performance he has seen in more than five million miles of racing since the E15 ethanol blend was introduced in the 2011 racing season.

"When they decided to go with an ethanol-blend of fuel, in 2010, NASCAR started looking at what was the correct blend to use. After many tests, they came up with E15," Childress said, pointing out that his own racing team tested up to E30 blends, which he believes would be even better. "Nothing but positive results came out of our tests. Engines ran cooler, ethanol makes more octane so it makes more horsepower, less carbon buildup, better emissions, and our parts when we tore the engines down looked much better." Domestic Fuel

FIA confirms Formula E updates, LA date  The FIA has approved a series of updates to the Formula E Championship following today’s World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) in Marrakech, Morocco.

The 10 Formula E teams have now been fully approved by the council meaning Drayson Racing, China Racing, Andretti Autosport, Dragon Racing, e.dams, Super Aguri, Audi Sport Abt, Mahindra Racing, Virgin Racing and Venturi Grand Prix will all line-up on the start grid for the opening race in Beijing in September.

Amendments to the inaugural 2014/2015 season were also confirmed. The most significant of which being the postponement of the Rio de Janeiro ePrix, previously scheduled to host round three of the championship on November 15. This race will now be replaced with a brand new host city - to be announced shortly - taking place on February 14 2015. More ...

Giedo van der Garde to replace Sutil for FP1 in China  
Giedo van der Garde
Sauber test driver Giedo van der Garde is set to get his second practice run-out of the season at next weekend’s Chinese Grand Prix when he replaces Adrian Sutil during the first Friday session.

The Dutchman joined Sauber at the beginning of the season after being dropped by Caterham, and has set his sights on a full-time drive with the team in 2015. He first got behind the wheel of the Sauber C33 during practice at the last race in Bahrain, where he replaced Esteban Gutierrez for FP1 and finished just three-tenths of a second behind Adrian Sutil. More ...

Langdon, Capps, McGaha, Ray Lead zMax Qualifying  
Ron Capps
Mike Mercurio/AR1.com
Shawn Langdon (Top Fuel), Ron Capps (Funny Car), Chris McGaha (Pro Stock) and Michael Ray (Pro Stock Motorcycle) lead the second round of qualifying for Sunday's NHRA Four-Wide Nationals at zMax Dragway.

Langdon topped the second round with a pass of 3.753 at 323.35 mph to knock J.R. Todd off the top spot after Todd led Friday's opening round with a 3.781 at 325.06 mph.

Capps went from 16th to first on the Funny Car ladder going 4.059 at 314.24 mph in the second round, while McGaha led both rounds in Pro Stock with a run of 6.523 at 213.10 mph. Ray was quickest in the bikes, going 6.816 at 197.02 mph. 

Qualifying continues with the final two rounds on Saturday before eliminations begin on Sunday.
Pete McCole
Ford, IMSA join forces on official automotive partnership (2nd Update)  UPDATE #2 A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, I told you that Ford would win the pole and race in Long Beach as reward for this sponsorship.  In Long Beach pole qualifying today Scott Pruett won the pole in the Ganassi Ford and Oswald Negri in the other Shank Ford was 2nd. It is amazing what can happen with computer generated grids.  Mordichai Rosen, Los Angeles

04/08/14 A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, Based on this announcement I expect a Ford powered car to sit on pole or win the race in Long Beach as a reward for their sponsorship.  Mordichai Rosen, Los Angeles, CA

04/07/14 The International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) and Ford Motor Company today announced a three-year agreement making Ford an “Official Automotive Partner” of IMSA, the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge.

As part of the partnership, an EcoBoost-powered Ford Taurus SHO (ABOVE) will be the “Official Safety Car” for Saturday’s Tequila Patr¢n Sports Car Showcase at Long Beach (FOX Sports 1, Live, 6 p.m. ET). More ...
Wayne Taylor Racing lands Konica Minolta sponsorship  Wayne Taylor Racing has inked a multi-year sponsorship deal with Konica Minolta Business Solutions U.S.A., Inc. to sponsor the team’s No. 10 Corvette DP in the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.         

The deal was announced at the Tequila Patron Sports Car Showcase at the Grand Prix of Long Beach. Team owner Wayne Taylor indicated the team’s primary focus is on the No. 10 car but did not shy away from the possibility of adding a second car in the future. More ...

Rocker Roger Daltery to attend Long Beach  Roger Daltrey, founding member and lead singer of The Who, will mix racing with philanthropy at the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Daltrey will attend the Verizon IndyCar Series race to raise awareness of Teen Cancer America.

Daltrey, inducted in 1990 into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of The Who, co-founded Teen Cancer America with The Who bandmate Pete Townsend. The organization seeks to ensure that cancer patients throughout the United States have access to special units and treatments. Daltrey's charity in the United Kingdom, Teenage Cancer Trust, has built 27 such units in major hospitals. More ...

Harvick wins pole in Darlington  
Kevin Harvick
Kevin Harvick won the Coors Light Pole Award at Darlington Raceway for Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles' Southern 500.

Harvick won his seventh career pole and his first of the 2014 season by posting a fast lap of 183.479 mph in the final round of knockout-style qualifying.

Harvick also topped Friday's first session of practice for the Sprint Cup Series. In 17 Cup races at Darlington, he has yet to win. More ...

Sao Paulo says it will keep F1 at least until 2020  Sao Paulo officials say the city has signed a deal to continue hosting Formula One's Brazilian Grand Prix until at least 2020.

The city said the contract was signed Friday with representatives of auto racing's world governing body FIA and race promoters. It said the deal can be extended for another five years.

Sao Paulo's contract with F1 was set to end this year. More ...

Sauber confirms new chassis for Gutierrez  Sauber has confirmed that Esteban Gutiérrez will use a new chassis at next weekend's Chinese Grand Prix as a result of his collision with Pastor Maldonado in Bahrain.

Gutiérrez was tipped into a roll during last weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix and the Mexican, who was taken to hospital for precautionary checks, will receive a new chassis while the monocoque from the accident is being repaired.

Gutiérrez is hopeful that the minor upgrades to the Sauber C33 will enable the team to make progress in China. More ...

Edwards has no news on his contract situation  Carl Edwards (contract up at end of 2014 season), driver of the #99 Ford Ecoboost Fusion, took time to meet with media members outside his hauler following the final Sprint Cup practice session Friday afternoon. Edwards spoke about a few things, including a final question about his contract:


Edwards: "No. I would rather not even talk about it. I have no news and when there is nothing to say all I could do is stir it up. I promise you, no drama. No drama." Ford Racing

Latest on Biffle's contract status (Update)  UPDATE Greg Biffle, driver of the #16 3M Ford Fusion, met with media members Friday morning at Darlington Raceway in advance of Saturday night's Southern 500. One of the questions asked was about his contract situation:


Biffle: "I think so. I think we are getting closer. There are a lot of moving parts to a contract and a lot of new people at 3M but I know the folks are going up there next week to visit some more. I have a feeling it is getting closer. I know there has been a lot of activity. The program works really well for them and we have the America Red Cross on the car this weekend so it is a good program for 3M and I think they are happy and it looks like we are closing in on an announcement. Hopefully here soon we will have something." Ford Racing More ...

Haas statement on F1 team (Update)  UPDATE Check out Gene Haas' 180-mph Windshear wind tunnel.

04/11/14 Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation and co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, has been granted a Formula One license by the FIA. The following is his statement.

“Obviously, we’re extremely pleased to have been granted a Formula One license by the FIA. It’s an exciting time for me, Haas Automation and anyone who wanted to see an American team return to Formula One.

“Now, the really hard work begins. It’s a challenge we embrace as we work to put cars on the grid. More ...
Racing News
Petty and Davern win poles in Long Beach  Brett Davern was awarded the celebrity pole position after turning the quickest lap during qualifying for the 38th annual Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Pro/Celebrity Race. Davern, who stars as ‘Jake Rosati’ in MTV’s hit-series “Awkward,” drove his 210-horsepower Scion FR-S around the 1.97-mile street course in downtown Long Beach with a lap time of 1:45.638.

“Brett proved he’s a racer at heart,” said Toyota’s National Motorsports Manager Les Unger. “He returned to the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Pro/Celebrity Race this year to improve his performance -- and he succeeded. All the drivers did a great job today, and will be ready to put on an impressive show in Saturday’s race.” More ...
racing news
Honda Forms Partnership with SAFEisFAST.com, Dario added  Leading automotive and racing organization Honda has become the Presenting Partner of the Road Racing Drivers Club’s SAFEisFAST.com initiative.

Honda will play a vital role in SAFEisFAST’s goal of being the free resource to racers worldwide, making drivers safer by making them more competent. The partnership will see Honda’s racing arm – Honda Performance Development (HPD) – featured extensively on SAFEisFAST.com through expanded content, interactive instruction, visitor contests and the material benefits of Honda support. HPD will work closely with new SAFEisFAST.com ambassador Dario Franchitti to help promote the program worldwide. More ...

Visor Cam: Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach  Take a lap with Simon Pagenaud around the 1.968 mile street course in Long Beach, California.

Marquez remains fastest on first day in Austin  World Champion, Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez, has finished the first day in Texas a second faster than his next competitor, with teammate Dani Pedrosa in third.

With air temperatures 7§C warmer than this morning, and the track temperature 20§C hotter, all the riders were able to improve on this morning’s FP1 time.

Marc Marquez "This first day of practice in Austin went really well. Obviously I’m happy with the time I set, and also with the gap of a second between myself and the next quickest rider. However, the most important thing for me is that my leg feels ok – much better than it did in Qatar. The injury was bothering me a little, but I was able to participate in both Free Practice sessions without taking any painkillers. Now I just have to wait for tomorrow and see if things go better or worse for us then; we know that we have a small advantage and we will try to manage it well, but I am aware that the rest of the riders will also make improvements" More ...

Frenchmen top 2nd IndyCar practice in Long Beach  
Simon Pagenaud
The Frogs ruled Long Beach Friday afternoon.  Frenchmen Simon Pagenaud and Sebastien Bourdais were 1-2 on the time sheet in the afternoon practice session for the 40th Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Pagenaud, of Montmorillon, France, was quickest on the 1.968-mile, 11-turn circuit with a lap of 1 minute, 9.1488 seconds in the 45-minute session. Bourdais, a three-time winner of the race from Le Mans, France, was just 0.0120 of a second back in the No. 11 Mistic KVSH Racing car.

Verizon IndyCar Series rookie Jack Hawksworth was an impressive third quick (1:09.4409) in the No. 98 Charter/Castrol Edge entry for BHA/BBM with Curb Agajanian, while 2013 race winner Takuma Sato was fourth (1:09.4524) in the No. 14 ABC Supply car for A.J. Foyt Racing. Will Power, a two-time winner and three-time pole sitter here, was fifth (1:09.4980) in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske car. More ...

Chaves tops opening Indy Lights practice in Long Beach  
Rank Car Driver Name C/E/T Time Speed Diff Gap Best Lap Laps
1 5 Chaves, Gabby D/ /C 01:16.9948 92.017 --.---- --.---- 21 21
2 26 Veach, Zach D/ /C 01:17.3220 91.627 0.3272 0.3272 20 22
3 4 Baron, Alex (R) D/ /C 01:17.3520 91.592 0.3572 0.0300 20 24
4 83 Brabham, Matthew (R) D/ /C 01:17.4919 91.426 0.4971 0.1399 19 22
5 2 Meyer, Zack (R) D/ /C 01:17.8787 90.972 0.8839 0.3868 24 24
6 7 Razia, Luiz (R) D/ /C 01:17.9471 90.892 0.9523 0.0684 15 15
7 22 Ghirelli, Vittorio (R) D/ /C 01:18.1299 90.680 1.1351 0.1828 21 22
8 10 Garcia, Juan Pablo D/ /C 01:18.2979 90.485 1.3031 0.1680 24 25
9 42 Harvey, Jack (R) D/ /C 01:18.5215 90.228 1.5267 0.2236 12 12
10 77 Piedrahita, Juan (R) D/ /C 01:18.5814 90.159 1.5866 0.0599 22 24
11 24 Anderson, Scott (R) D/ /C 01:18.8690 89.830 1.8742 0.2876 17 20
12 28 Read, Lloyd (R) D/ /C 01:19.8442 88.733 2.8494 0.9752 20 20
Trans Am Series Coming To Television  The Trans Am Series will make its return to television in 2014 with Carolinas Production Group, spearheaded by long-time race announcer Rick Benjamin.

"The Trans Am Series is ready for this step forward," said John Clagett, president of The Trans Am Race Company. “Rebuilding Trans Am’s television presence will take some time, but we feel that this is a step in the right direction. We’re ecstatic that Rick (Benjamin) and his group have decided to come along for the ride; his talent and experience are essential to what we believe will be a production of the highest quality." More ...

DirecTV Blimp "Lefty" To Debut During NASCAR Race At Darlington  Viewers watching Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bojangles Southern 500 on Fox will be the first to see the newly-named DirecTV blimp since a "Name the Blimp" contest ended last month. "The name 'Lefty' is perfect," said DirecTV Senior VP/Marketing Jon Gieselman. "The blimp is like a Sprint Cup Series car, constantly turning left … just at a slightly reduced speed." The race will be held at Darlington Raceway. By David Broughton/Sportsbusinessdaily.com
Dillon and Larson hit wall in Darlington practice  
“Well, Kyle (Larson) came over and asked, ‘where did you hit’? I said off Turn 2. He said, me too.  I said did you try you try to come off the wall and make it turn? He said exact same thing. So we are just learning, I guess. You get really tight. I felt good into (Turn) 1, and then through the middle, I get tight late around the corner, it just carries speed. Just hit the wall, but I learned a lot right there. Hopefully it doesn't happen again.


“Yeah I mean we (Austin Dillon) were talking and it sounded like the exact same thing that we were describing.  Difference is I have to get a back-up out.  Our back-up they said is just as good as our primary so we had a really good run before we I hit the wall.  Just learning, I’m mostly ever in the wall in (Turns) 3 and 4 and never hit off (Turn) 2.  I killed the wall in (Turn) 2.  We will get back out here soon and I’m sure be fine.”

Pruett/Rojas top opening Tudor USCC practice in Long Beach  
Pos CP No. drivers Time Speed Diff Laps Make
1 1 P 01 Pruett/Rojas 1:16.441 92.683 48 -.--- 49 Ford EcoBoost/Riley
2 2 P 60 Pew/Negri Jr. 1:16.681 92.393 49 0.240 57 Ford EcoBoost/Riley
3 3 P 5 Barbosa/Fittipaldi 1:16.688 92.385 39 0.247 51 Corvette DP
4 4 P 10 Taylor/Taylor 1:17.090 91.903 53 0.649 53 Corvette DP
5 5 P 90 Westbrook/Valiante 1:17.311 91.640 24 0.870 48 Corvette DP
6 6 P 42 Pla/Yacaman 1:17.382 91.556 55 0.941 63 Nissan Morgan
7 7 P 1 Sharp/Dalziel 1:17.413 91.520 28 0.972 53 HPD ARX-03b
8 8 P 2 Brown/van Overbeek 1:18.314 90.467 36 1.873 46 HPD ARX-03b
9 9 P 31 Curran/Said 1:19.664 88.934 14 3.223 31 Corvette DP
10 1 GTLM 4 Gavin/Milner 1:19.797 88.785 34 3.356 53 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R More ...
Marquez leads the way in Austin after FP1  
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez, race winner here last year, has made his intentions clear from the start at Austin’s Circuit of the Americas. Marc finished this morning’s FP1 session at the top of the time sheets with a lap of 2’04.704 on lap 10 of 15, and 0.8s faster than any other rider.

Marquez said afterward, It's been a positive session and it’s nice to start with a good feeling and to find a base setting I’m happy with right from the beginning. This track has a drastic change of direction which is quite difficult if you’re not 100% fit, so I could feel it - even after just a few laps. Now we will try to improve this afternoon, I think it will be difficult to maintain the gap going into FP2 and the other riders will for sure be closer." More ...

Hinchcliffe tops opening IndyCar practice in Long Beach  
James Hinchcliffe
Practice 1 on the streets of Long Beach saw James Hinchcliffe top the time sheet with a lap of 1 minute, 9.8110 seconds. Last April, the Andretti Autosport driver in the No. 27 entry was quickest in the opening session the 1.968-mile, 11-turn course at 1:08.9187. One notable difference is that the team switched to the twin-turbocharged Honda engine this season.

Eight different teams were represented in the top 10, and the top 17 cars were separated by less than a second.

Helio Castroneves, driving the No. 3 AAA Southern California Team Penske car, was 0.1795 of a second behind Hinchcliffe. Justin Wilson in the No. 19 Dale Coyne Racing car was third (1:10.0080) and Ryan Hunter-Reay was fourth (1:10.0340) in the No. 28 DHL car for Andretti Autosport. More ...
Charlie Kimball Finds Traction in Adversity  
Charlie Kimball talking with Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Tony Kanaan.
The following article from the Orange County Register, talks about Verizon IndyCar Series driver Charlie Kimball's battle with Type 1 Diabetes.

The dashboard in Charlie Kimball’s race car is just a little different than those of his competitors.

“It’s all right there together: speed, lap time, oil, blood sugar, water levels…”

Kimball is more than just a driver. He’s an innovator. He’s a role model.

He’s an anomaly.

Kimball is the first licensed IndyCar racer to suffer from Type 1 diabetes, which he was diagnosed with in 2007. He will compete in his fourth Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday. More ...

Red Bull quit rumors 'nonsense' - Marko  
Helmut Marko dismisses rumors of Red Bull leaving F1.
(GMM)  Dr Helmut Marko on Friday rubbished speculation suggesting Red Bull could quit formula one.

Obviously upset with the sport's revolutionary 2014 rules, team owner Dietrich Mateschitz recently hinted that his commitment to the sport has "a clear limit".

The wilder rumor is that Red Bull could switch to another racing category, perhaps with Cosworth engines.

"This is utter nonsense and unfounded," Marko, who is Mateschitz's motor racing right-hand man, told Germany's Auto Bild. More ...

Long Beach Weekend Schedule  
2013 Long Beach winner Takuma Sato will look to repeat this weekend. 
Good morning, everyone. Brian Carroccio here filling in for AR1 President Mark Cipolloni. Mark C. is currently en route to Long Beach, where I will be joining him tomorrow.

Below, we have the weekend schedule for the 40th running of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. As usual, Long Beach has a jam packed schedule of racing for the weekend. The Verizon IndyCar Series will take to the track for their first practice session at 10 a.m. PT.

Weekend schedule below. 

2014 Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach
Schedule of Events

Friday, April 11

7:00 a.m. Gates open
7:40 a.m. TUDOR United SportsCar Championship practice
8:00 a.m. Lifestyle Expo opens
10:00 a.m. INDYCAR practice
11:30 a.m. Pro/Celebrity Race practice
12:15 p.m. Indy Lights practice
2:00 p.m. INDYCAR practice
3:00 p.m. Pro/Celebrity qualifying
4:00 p.m. INDYCAR All-Driver Autograph Session in INDYCAR Paddock (open to all spectators)
4:00 p.m. Pirelli World Challenge practice
5:00 p.m. TUDOR Championship qualifying
6:00 p.m. Lifestyle Expo closes
6:45 p.m. Tecate Light Fiesta Friday Concert on Concert Stage Starring Kinky
7:00 p.m. Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge practice (Turns 9-10-11)
7:45 p.m. Motegi Racing Super Drift Challenge qualifying
9:00 p.m. End of day's activities More ...

Bottas frustrated after Massa defies orders  Team orders triggered another Malaysian Grand Prix controversy on Sunday, with Brazilian Felipe Massa defiant after refusing to obey an instruction to let Williams teammate Valtteri Bottas overtake.

Massa, no stranger to unwelcome radio messages at his previous team Ferrari, finished the second race of the Formula One season in seventh place and just ahead of his frustrated Finnish teammate.

McLaren's Jenson Button was sixth, managing to hold off the Williams pair despite struggling for straight line pace. More ...
Drivers say Massa wrong to ignore team order  (GMM) Two former F1 drivers on Tuesday said they thought Felipe Massa was wrong to have ignored Williams' team orders in Malaysia.

Although Brazilian Massa has only just left Ferrari, where in 2010 he was ordered to give up a win to Fernando Alonso, Karl Wendlinger said he should have let Valtteri Bottas past at Sepang.

"As a team boss I would not be pleased with him," former Sauber driver Wendlinger told Austrian television Servus TV. More ...
Stoffel Vandoorne shines in Bahrain  McLaren protege Stoffel Vandoorne made a stellar GP2 debut today at Bahrain International Circuit: he led the majority of his first race from lights to flag in a display of mature and calm driving. He crossed the finish line 1.5s ahead of Julian Leal who disposed of poleman Jolyon Palmer in the closing stages of the race.

When the first feature race of the 2014 season kicked off, Vandoorne made a perfect getaway from P2 to get into the lead going into Turn 1.

Behind the Belgian driver, Stephane Richelmi and Stefano Coletti found a way past Palmer and Daniel Abt who both had a poor start from pole and P3 respectively. Vandoorne was on a mission and tried to build as much of a gap as possible before having to change from Soft to Hard tires. More ...
Horner rates Ricciardo very high  Red Bull team boss Christian Horner believes that Daniel Ricciardo has already demonstrated that he is "up there with the best" drivers in Formula 1 after his impressive start with the World Champion outfit.

Following half a season at the now defunct HRT squad and two campaigns at junior team Toro Rosso, Ricciardo was given the nod by Red Bull chiefs to replace the retiring Mark Webber and partner Sebastian Vettel.

Having been stripped of a second-place finish at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix over a fuel flow rate breach, Ricciardo went on to show further strong pace in Malaysia, before out-racing Vettel at the Bahrain event. More ...
Grand Prix of Long Beach Notebook  There will be a standing start for Sunday’s IndyCarToyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. But do not expect it to be anything like the standing starts of Formula One.

“It’s more unpredictable,” said IndyCar racer and former Formula One racer Justin Wilson. “IndyCar is definitely more unpredictable. Formula One is all computer systems with a little launch control. The computer learns that you need so much power and time and speed. It makes it a lot easier.”

Standing starts are rare in IndyCar; they were used at only Toronto and Houston last year. This will be the first standing start at Long Beach since 2008, the last year of CART, and only the second since Formula One raced at Long Beach. More ...
Latest F1 news in brief - Friday  
  • Simona gets her first taste of F1
    FIA to confirm Haas entry on Friday - Ecclestone
  • Tire-warmer ban for 2015 in doubt
  • First races have shown Williams 'weaknesses' - Bottas
  • Promoter worried about Canada GP future
  • Marko hopes Renault engine 'starts to work'
  • Engine makers to discuss V6 noise in China
  • Title sponsor removed from Force India sidepods
  • Sauber's female driver to make F1 test debut More ...
Dixon to Drive Second BVR Dragster  Three-time NHRA Champion Top Fuel driver Larry Dixon has been selected to drive a second dragster for Bob Vandergriff Racing at the remaining 9 races, in a planned 10 race schedule in 2014. Casedhole Solutions and Total Equipment And Service (T.E.A.S.) will sponsor the car for those nine races this season.

“I’m excited to have Larry on board. He is a great driver and a family man who will fit in with our program perfectly,” said Bob Vandergriff Jr. “Anytime you can add a three-time champion to your program, it enhances the value proposition we are trying to build at BVR.” More ...

Michiel Mol joins Super Aguri Formula E Team  The Super Aguri Formula E Team has announced the appointment of Michiel Mol, a successful Dutch entrepreneur and commercial spaceflight pioneer, to the team’s board with the position effective immediately.

The 44-year-old has a close association with Formula 1 and he is currently a co-founder and owner of the Sahara Force India F1 team. He is also the founding partner and chief executive officer at Space Expedition Corporation (SXC), a private company involved in space tourism.

Executive Chairman Aguri Suzuki said: “It is with great pleasure that I welcome Michiel to Super Aguri Formula E during such an exciting time. At Super Aguri our dreams are electric and we’re now striding toward a future where electric cars will become the norm and are owned by people on every street around the world. More ...

Mario Andretti is a national treasure  
Mario Andretti will be honored tonight in Long Beach by the Road Racing Drivers Club at its annual affair ahead of the Toyota GP of Long Beach
Mario Andretti is a national treasure, and anytime you're lucky enough to speak with the most famous race driver in the world you walk away with true gold.

So it was for media and fans who saw Andretti last week at Virginia Tire and Auto in Ashburn, where Andretti made an appearance for Firestone. Firestone supplies tires to the IndyCar series, and employs Mario to make personal appearances and drive lucky fans in the two-seater on pace laps at IndyCar races.

Born in Italy in 1940, Andretti moved to the United States as a boy and started his racing career in a dirt Modified at Nazareth, Pa. He raced and won in the Modified, and raced in Sprint Cars, Midgets, and dirt Champ Cars. He became a four-time IndyCar series champion, won the Indy 500, won the Daytona 500, won the Sebring 12-hour endurance sports car race and was the 1978 Formula One World Driving Champion. More ...

racing news
Luyendyk Jr. recovering from crash  Arie Luyendyk Jr. thinks he could be back to racing his off-road truck by the end of the month, which seems remarkable given the crash he had last weekend in Primm, Nev.

Luyendyk was battling with Mike Jenkins in The Off-Road Championship (TORC) race when they both hit the first-turn jump at about the same time. Luyendyk's truck flew farther but took contact mid-air. The truck landed on the side of its left-side wheels, which caused a significant barrel roll.

Luyendyk's left arm apparently got wedged against the seat, breaking his collarbone. Fortunately it was a diagonal break, allowing an easier surgery Tuesday. More ...

de Ferran takes on bigger role at HPD  Honda Performance Development today announced that Gil de Ferran, a two-time IndyCar Series champion and winner of the 2003 Indianapolis 500, has expanded his ongoing role as a consultant to HPD into a number of new areas, ranging from improving operations, team and driver relationships to assisting with the company's motorsports strategic and business planning.

Associated with HPD and the Honda Racing program since 1996, de Ferran won his first Championship Auto Racing Teams (CART) Indy car race for Honda at the 1996 Cleveland Grand Prix. He went on to score another six wins and 16 poles with Honda power, and claimed the 2000 and 2001 CART IndyCar World Series drivers' championships. More ...

1996 winner Buddy Lazier to enter 2014 Indianapolis 500  Lazier Partners Racing (LPR) announced today that it will enter the 98th running of the Indianapolis 500-Mile Race with driver Buddy Lazier. It will be the second consecutive year the family-organized team will enter the Greatest Spectacle in Racing. 

Lazier, the 1996 Indianapolis 500 winner and 2000 Verizon IndyCar Series champion, will drive the No. 91 University of Iowa Stephen A. Wynn Institute for Vision Research Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone car. More ...

Mercedes advantage locked in for rest of 2014, others should stay home  
With engines frozen for the rest of 2014, Renault and Ferrari powered cars have no chance to win whatsoever.  Hamilton and Rosberg will win 100% of the races in 2014
Word is beginning to leak out about how Mercedes-Benz has managed to produce such a successful Formula 1 car this year.

It is so successful in fact that Red Bull, Ferrari and even the sport’s commercial chief, Bernie Ecclestone, are complaining that the racing is dull, the drivers don’t have enough input, the noise is no good and so on.

The bad news for them is that thanks to Mercedes allowing its driver to race, which Ferrari never did in the Michael Schumacher Era, we have seen a great race in Bahrain, not just at the front but also right down through the field. More ...

Video: 3D animation of the Power Unit dominating F1  New cars, new technologies, new procedures... Lights out for the new era of Formula 1! For drivers, teams and fans, the start of the season has brought a whole host of exciting innovations.

Find out more about the story behind the innovative technologies of the 2014 Hybrid Power Unit for the Silver Arrows and just how it achieves such a remarkable step forward in efficiency of over 30%. More ...

Latest F1 news in brief - Thursday (Update)  UPDATE Updates shown in red below.

  • Jean Todt
    Todt to 'think about' rule changes - Marko
  • Paid F1 'app' to debut in June - Ecclestone
  • F1 return still 'impossible' for now - Kubica
  • Renault situation 'not acceptable' - Grosjean
  • No 'hara-kiri' between Mercedes teammates - Wolff
  • Fun and games with Red Bull and McLaren
  • Massa has 'freedom of headspace' at Williams - Smedley
  • Raikkonen: Ferrari is not stupid
  • Pirelli confirms 'progress' with F1 2015 prototype tires New
  • Andretti: Fernando Alonso could leave Ferrari New More ...
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