Mercedes Boss Toto Wolff Says Formula One's Smaller Teams Can Be Saved
Mercedes motorsport Exec Dir Toto Wolff believes F1's smaller teams "can be saved if they accept a range of proposals due to be aired at a forthcoming crisis meeting," according to Ian Parkes of the PA. Earlier this year, F1's Strategy Group -- comprising Ferrari, McLaren, Mercedes, Red Bull, Williams and Lotus -- "agreed to implement a cost cap, only to perform a U-turn to the fury of the smaller teams."
Wolff, "who was initially in favor of a cost cap only to revise his opinion, feels there are other solutions."
Wolff: "It doesn't make sense to go against two or three of the big teams, so going through the sporting and technical regulations is the way." Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner, "who has long been against a cost cap, insists the bigger teams will do all they can to look after the smaller marques." Horner: "At the end of the day we have to have somebody to race against." PA
Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama highlights motorsports coverage on NBCSN this week NBCSN's coverage of the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series continues this week with the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama on Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET, highlighting more than 15 hours of motorsports coverage this week, which includes Mecum Auctions coverage from Kansas City.
NBC Sports Live Extra – NBC Sports Group's live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, and tablets – will stream coverage of the Indy Grand Prix of Alabama and Mecum Auctions via "TV Everywhere."
NBCSN's presentation of the Indy Grand Prix of Alabama begins Sunday at 1 a.m. ET with qualifying. Live race coverage begins Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET, followed by Race 2 of the Legacy Indy Lights 100 at 5 p.m. ET.
True to his word, Luca di Montezemolo is beginning to clean house at Ferrari
Luca di Montezemolo has ordered Ferrari to "step up a gear" after completing an overhaul of some of the processes within the team.
Since team principal Stefano Domenicali resigned last Monday, Montezemolo has taken a more hands-on approach to help Marco Mattiacci, Domenicali's replacement, get up to speed. According to a story on Ferrari's official website Montezemolo "has been very clear in his words to Mattiacci and his staff, recognizing the need to 'step up a gear in the work of the Gestione Sportiva'."
In order to allow the team to react more quickly, he has ordered a streamlining of the decision making processes that impact on performance.
ACO Voices Concern Over Tudor Series Balance of Power manipulations [Editor's Note: Too funny. The France Family owns the Tudor Series. Anyone who thinks the France Family's Daytona Prototypes would not have an advantage over the P2 cars that came over from ALMS, well we have a bridge we would like to sell you.] With a P2 team having yet to claim victory in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, the ACO has voiced concern over the current Balance of Performance struggles in the Prototype class.
The organizers of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, along with the FIA, control the worldwide technical regulations for the LMP2 platform, which has been integrated into the TUDOR Championship with the former GRAND-AM Daytona Prototypes.
“I cannot say now that I’m happy because only DPs have won races. That means we’re maybe not in the perfect world,” ACO Sports Manager Vincent Beaumesnil told Sportscar365 last weekend at Silverstone.
(DALLAS) April 22, 2014 – The newly-formed SH Racing Rallycross team is proud to announce it will contest the 2014 Red Bull Global Rallycross season with Formula 1 and NASCAR superstar Nelson Piquet Jr. behind the wheel. The team will campaign the No. 07 Ford Fiesta ST, a factory Ford car constructed by OMSE. The car will showcase the BSN® N.O.-XPLODE livery at six of ten Red Bull GRC races this year, including the 2014 X Games Austin.
SH Racing Rallycross will be led by team owner James “Sulli” Sullivan, partner in the 2013 Indianapolis 500 winning car of KVSH Racing, currently competing in the Verizon IndyCar Series with driver Sebastien Bourdais.
Sulli founded SH Racing in 2010 with roots in motocross, shifted to the Verizon IndyCar Series in 2011, and will return to action sports in 2014 with Red Bull GRC. After competing in the 2013 X Games Los Angeles, SH Racing began preparations for a full-season Red Bull GRC effort in 2014.
“From our OMSE built Ford Fiesta, to Nelson Piquet Jr. as driver, to BSN® N.O.-XPLODE as our primary partner, we have strategically built this team to win, “ stated SH Rallycross owner James “Sulli” Sullivan. “We are up against some steep competition, some of which we compete against in IndyCar, but we’re in it to win it bar none.”
Did you have Franck Montagny to Andretti for the GP of Indy? We certainly didn't.
4.23.14 – French-native Franck Montagny will return to the Verizon IndyCar Series in May to pilot the No. 26 Honda at the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis. With a diverse and extensive racing resume, Montagny will become the fifth driver in Michael Andretti’s stable for the road-course event.
"I am very happy to be back with Andretti Autosport; I have already felt 'at home' during my visits," Montagny commented. "Participating in the Grand Prix of Indianapolis in the temple of motorsport that is the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is a true moment of happiness."
The relationship between Andretti and Montagny dates back to 2008 when Montagny competed in the ALMS series with Andretti Autosport, he then returned to the team in 2009 for his IndyCar Series debut at Sonoma Raceway.
Dollar General signs on with Villeneuve and SPM for Indy 500.
INDIANAPOLIS (April 23, 2014) - Dollar General, the largest small-box discount retailer in the United States, will serve as primary sponsor for the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports entry driven by 1995 Indianapolis 500 winner Jacques Villeneuve in the 98th running of "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" on Sunday, May 25.
This will mark Villeneuve's third start in the prestigious race. He's returning to the Indy 500 after a 19-year absence. His record at the world's largest single-day sporting event includes a second-place finish and Rookie of the Year honors in 1994 and victory in 1995 before moving to Formula One, where he won the 1997 World Championship.
Safety-Kleen Renews NASCAR Sponsorship In Multiyear Deal Safety-Kleen has renewed its sponsorship with NASCAR. The oil collecting and re-refining company will continue to be the sport’s official environmental services supplier, a position it has held since '04. Financial terms of the multiyear agreement were not available, but sources valued the deal in the mid-six figures annually. Under the agreement, Safety-Kleen will continue to capture cleaning solvents, oil fluids and lubricants at NASCAR races for use in other products.
In this April 23, 2014 IndyCar News and Notes, AR1 Columnist Brian Carroccio discusses the decision by IndyCar to place driver Helio Castroneves on probation.
I was genuinely shocked yesterday by the reaction of many regarding IndyCar's decision to place Team Penske driver Helio Castroneves on probation. Of course, a Tweet from Castroneves' account came out during the Long Beach race, and I quote
"IndyCar officials continuing not punishing some drivers and giving green flag during an accident."
And I suppose the text of the Tweet, which apparently Castroneves' sister composed, was relatively harmless, simply questioning the allocation of penalties by the series. However, the message was accompanied by a "thumbs down" covering the INDYCAR logo, which on the surface may also seem harmless, and I suppose, a little humorous.
Now, I believe Castroneves' claim that his sister composed the Tweet. Such a scenario is more than plausible, as drivers regularly have others update their social network accounts, particularly during races. However, I do not think that absolves Helio Castroneves from the responsibility of what is posted from his account, and am befuddled how anyone could claim otherwise.
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner says Daniel Ricciardo has been “outstanding” so far this season after “a massive performance” in China.
Ricciardo beat Sebastian Vettel for the second consecutive race, outpacing Vettel on the same strategy and eventually finishing 20 seconds clear of his Red Bull teammate. While Horner has said Vettel's struggles are a result of issues getting the car set-up right to make the Pirelli tires last, he was full of praise for the Ricciardo after his opening four races for the team.
“A massive performance by Dan; [he was] hugely impressive all weekend,” Horner said. “He's really been outstanding this season. In all four grands prix so far this year I think he's done a tremendous job.
Busch, Villeneuve, three more to undergo Indy500 rookie orientation Kurt Busch and four other drivers will take part in the rookie orientation or veteran driver refresher course to be eligible to compete in the May 25th Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the track announced Tuesday.
Busch will join four other drivers – Mikhail Aleshin, Martin Plowman, Jack Hawksworth and 1995 Indy 500 winner and former CART and F1 champion Jacques Villeneuve – for the three-pronged orientation and driving program on Tuesday, April 29th and Monday, May 5th.
Villeneuve will only have to complete the final two phases of the three-phase program to be recertified to race in the 500 because of his prior experience there.
Conway hoping to continue street race success on other tracks
The stunning victory two weeks ago at Long Beach is still fresh in Mike Conway’s mind as he approaches this Sunday’s Grand Prix of Alabama at the picturesque Barber Motorsports Park.
The come-from-behind win in one of the world’s biggest street races put Conway in rare company as a two-time winner of the “Roar by the Shore” and proved that the 30-year-old Brit will be a factor throughout the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series road and street races. Now, a three-time series race winner, Conway has set his sights on the 90-lap main event at the 2.38-mile, 17-turn natural terrain course east of Birmingham.
"I like the Barber circuit a lot,” said Conway, who also won at Belle Isle in Detroit last year. “It’s a cool track, very fast flowing. It is hard to pass there, but it’s still possible. I qualified on the front row in the first IndyCar Series race at Barber. I’d really like to do that again. I feel we can transfer the Long Beach win into a good showing this weekend at Barber."
Bourdais showing speed, now needs results KVSH Racing driver Sebastien Bourdais will be looking to turn the speed he has shown in the first two events of the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series season into solid results beginning this weekend at the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama, April 25-27, at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama.
Bourdais, who will pilot the No. 11 Team Hydroxycut - KVSH Racing Chevrolet/Dallara/Firestone on the 2.38-mile, 17-turn permanent road course, is coming off consecutive races in which he has had fast cars and gotten strong support from his KVSH Racing crew, only to be denied a top-finish due to some unusual incidents. He currently sits 16th in the championship standings with 33 points, but is just nine points out of tenth and 21 out of fifth.
"This race is very important for KVSH Racing," Bourdais said. "We had a fast car the first two races of the season, but for various reasons have not been able to get the results we were hoping for. The guys have done a great job setting up and preparing the car. We just need to put everything together and finish off a race weekend with the kind of performance we know we are capable of having."
Will Power is not thinking about the Verizon IndyCar Series championship after two rounds, but everyone else - including any competitor who holds title aspirations - already is.
Chiefly, it's how to score consistently high results in what has started as a rough and tumble season to curb Power's gravitational pull on points. The driver of the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske car has finished first and second in the opening street course races to secure a sizable lead in the standings.
The 27-point gap is punctuated by second-place Mike Conway, who won at Long Beach on April 13, won't be competing in the six oval events through August.
Castroneves penalized for social media violation (Update)UPDATE Three-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves is in hot water with IndyCar over a critical tweet mistakenly posted by his sister. Last Sunday, after Castroneves finished 11th in the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, this tweet appeared on his official account. In case you missed Helio's tweet (see right). Castroneves quickly apologized and blamed the tweet on his sister, Kati. I apologize for the earlier tweet degrading IndyCar series which I did not write or agree with, unfortunately my sister used my twitter ..
Kati Castroneves took responsibility for the post, but IndyCar still placed Helio Castroneves on probation until June 30th for a violation of social media policy.
04/22/14 INDYCAR has placed Verizon IndyCar Series driver Helio Castroneves on probation through June 30, 2014, for an action following the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 13.
Castroneves was found to have violated Rule 9.3.8 (Social Media Policy violation).
The member may contest the imposition of the penalty pursuant to the procedures and timelines detailed in the review and appeal procedures of the Verizon IndyCar Series rulebook.
MotoGP's "shift toward pay-TV broadcasts has resulted in drastically decreased viewership numbers for the first several races of the season," according to Gerald Dirnbeck of MOTORSPORT-TOTAL.
MotoGP promoter Dorna "signed several new broadcast deals for the '14 season." MotoGP races "are now broadcast in 83 countries." However, in addition to free-TV broadcasts, there are now "several countries where the races only air on pay-TV."
In Germany, sports network Sport1 "has the broadcast rights." Sport1, whose rights deal "is set to expire at the end of the season, shows the races on its free-to-air TV channel as well as on its pay-TV channel Sport1+."
In Austria, the rights holder "is public broadcaster ORF." However, ORF "shows the races on its special-interest channel ORF Sport plus."
Formula One Profits Fell Last Year F1 profits fell by $137M to $286M on an underlying basis last year, "driven by accelerating payments under a new deal with the sport’s 11 teams," according to Christian Sylt for the London TELEGRAPH. The teams’ prize money increased 6.1% in '13 to a record $798M, "making it the single biggest cost for F1’s Luxembourg-based parent Delta 2."
Further pressure was put on F1’s bottom line by a new agreement with motorsports governing body FIA "that upped the annual fee it receives four-fold" to an estimated $40M. There "was also less money coming in to pay it as the cancellation of a Grand Prix in Spain led to the drop in Delta 2’s revenue."
F1 paid $459M of non-cash inter-company loans, giving it a pre-tax loss of $282M on turnover which fell 4.3% to $1.3B. Telegraph
Eddie Cheever III to Make Sportscar Debut at Monterey Eddie Cheever III will make his TUDOR United SportsCar Championship debut next month at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, having been confirmed in Sprit of Race’s Ferrari 458 Italia GT3 for the Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix on May 3-4.
The 20-year-old second-generation driver will join Jack Gerber at the wheel of the AF Corse-run Ferrari GTD entry, which is contesting the Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup as well as other select rounds.
“The opportunity to drive a Spirit of Race/AF Corse-prepared Ferrari on a world-class circuit like Laguna Seca is a dream come true,” said Cheever III.
Danica Patrick Stars In Can-Am Spyder Motorcycle Spot, But Is Her Popularity Fading?
Danica Patrick promoting Can-Am bikes.
NASCAR driver Danica Patrick has "signed on with the three-wheeled Can-Am Spyder motorcycle, and debuts this week in a tongue-in-cheek online campaign that features her as the go-to gal whom celebrities call when seeking instant-escape from paparazzi," according to Bruce Horovitz of USA TODAY. Patrick in the spot "shows up on the three-wheeled roadster dubbed 'The Paparazzi Escape Vehicle,'" and Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler "calls and gets whisked away outside a restaurant."
Video: A to Z of Formula One: Part 5 (R to U) This is the fifth part in our new six part mini-series: The A to Z of Formula One.
Featuring Sebastian Vettel, Daniel Ricciardo, Sebastien Buemi, Christian Horner and Adrian Newey, the series offers a unique insider view to the key aspects of Formula One, connected to each letter of the alphabet.
Video: A to Z of Formula One: Part 6 (V to Z) This is the final part in our six part mini-series: The A to Z of Formula One.
Featuring Sebastian Vettel, Daniel Ricciardo, Sebastien Buemi, Christian Horner and Adrian Newey, the series offers a unique insider view to the key aspects of Formula One, connected to each letter of the alphabet.
Kimi Raikkonen believes his driving style was the main reason for his poor performance at last week's Chinese Grand Prix.
After qualifying in 11th place in Shanghai, the Finn finished in eighth place in Shanghai, more than a minute behind team-mate Fernando Alonso, who claimed the Maranello outfit's first podium of the season.
"It's probably more to do with my driving style plus these cold conditions and not getting the tires to work properly," Raikkonen told Autosport.
"If there was an issue with the car it would not be fast on new tires.
Marussia's Graeme Lowdon insists they will still race in F1 despite car company folding Marussia sporting director Graeme Lowdon has eased fans' fears by insisting it is business as usual despite the collapse of the car company behind their name.
Marussia Motors, a manufacturer of sports cars, recently folded, but its demise has had no effect on the Banbury-based Formula One team.
'We don't really know an awful lot about the car company, other than - as we understand it - they have cut costs and let staff go,' Lowdon told Press Association Sport.
Barber Motorsports Park is the fastest road course that the IndyCar series will race in 2014.
With the highest average corner speed on the calendar, Barber challenges the driver’s confidence level every lap. Because of the speed at this particular circuit, braking power and ability is more for outright car balance rather than stopping ability. Going into Turn 1 the drivers will reach 160 mph before a minor lift of the throttle. This is just a minor lift because the apex speed at T1 is upwards of 140 mph. Exiting T1 there is a very short run up to Turns 2, 3 and 4. This is a delicate area with the brake pedal because of the speed involved, but the drivers will apply a quick 1000 psi of pressure to slow the car to 75 mph before blasting back up the T4 hill.
After crashing out early in the 2013 Indy 500, Hildebrand out to prove he has what it takes
J.R. Hildebrand really can’t hold back his excitement for the month of May.
The 2011 Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year returns to the famed Brickyard for the 98th running of the world’s biggest auto race set for Sunday, May 25. And the California native, who nearly won the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” in his first try, is more than pleased with his newest 500-Mile Race entry.
Last month, Ed Carpenter Racing announced that Hildebrand will pilot the No. 21 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet as a teammate of owner/driver Carpenter, the 2013 Indy 500 pole winner in his popular No. 20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Chevy.
Chinese GP ended 2 laps too soon An "embarrassing blunder forced the Chinese Grand Prix to be shortened by two laps on Sunday" after a steward "mistakenly showed" the checkered flag early to race winner Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes, according to Daniel Hicks of the AFP. Race sources said that the "experienced" steward was "distraught after unfurling the flag and showing it momentarily to Hamilton, before realizing he was a lap too early." Under motorsports governing body FIA rules, if the flag is shown early, the race is "deemed to have finished when the leading car last crossed the line, in this case after lap 54" AFP
In London, Daniel Johnson wrote although it "did not have an impact on the points in the end, Daniel Ricciardo was chasing Fernando Alonso for the final podium place and was almost within striking distance." It "seems it was a simple case of an official mistakenly waving the flag a lap too soon, but the FIA closed ranks to protect the individual concerned" The Telegraph
Will Dale Jr. Repeat History With a Talladega Superspeedway Triumph? Many NASCAR fans are hoping history repeats itself this season for Dale Earnhardt Jr. In 2004 when Dale Jr. claimed the Daytona 500, he went on to win at NASCAR’s Most Competitive Track – Talladega Superspeedway – that same year. Dale Jr. won the season-opening Daytona 500 this year, and fans hoping to see a repeat performance at Talladega live and in person have some incredible ticket offers to choose from for the Aaron’s Dream Weekend, May 2-4.
These amazing ticket packages include: • 2-day Grandstand tickets starting at $50.00 (Saturday-Sunday, May 3-4) • 2-day Tower tickets starting at $100.00 (Saturday-Sunday, May 3-4) • $50 off regular pricing for Kids 12 and Under in Grandstands & Towers on Sunday, including FREE tickets in the Gadsden & Talladega Grandstands (2-day ticket package sections) • Kids 12 and Under FREE in all sections on Saturday, May 3
NASCAR Adds To Marketing Staff NASCAR announced two new hires today as part of the company’s commitment to implementing strategic growth plans for several critical segments, including youth, millennial and multicultural.
Peter Jung joins NASCAR as Senior Director of Growth Segment Marketing, reporting into Managing Director of Brand and Consumer Marketing Kenny Mitchell. Jung, most recently from MasterCard International, served as vice president of global consumer marketing, responsible for youth segment strategies and programs designed to drive a greater preference for the MasterCard brand. In this role, he oversaw the delivery of global consumer insights, innovation and marketing plans that supported youth segment priorities in the U.S. and several international markets.
Mercedes to get new nose, be even more dominant in F1 (Update)UPDATE Mercedes AMG may have the upper hand at the moment but the team engineers are fully aware that their rival will catch up, so they keep developing the mighty W05.
A new nose introduced in Shanghai is shorter than the previous version.
It is actually the nose design (see photos below) around which the car was originally conceived, but the team struggled to get it through the FIA frontal impact test, so had to delay its introduction until now.
Next Up on Ask A Pro: Third-Generation Racer Graham Rahal Verizon IndyCar Series star Graham Rahal will serve as the next Online Driving Instructor for the Road Racing Driver’s Club’s highly acclaimed SAFEisFAST website, which is now presented by Honda and features recently announced Worldwide Ambassador Dario Franchitti.
From today until next Sunday, April 27, questions for Rahal can be posed by logging onto SAFEisFAST.com and following the link to “Ask The Pros.” His answers will be posted for the following two weeks.
Beneteau to support Townsend's Bell's Indy 500 effort Townsend Bell announced today that Beneteau will be a personal sponsor of his No. 6 Robert Graham - KV Racing Technology Chevrolet/Dallara/Firestone in the 2014 Indianapolis 500, May 25, at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana.
Commenting on Beneteau's participation, Bell, who is a Brand Ambassador for the sailing and power yachts manufacturer said, "It's a perfect match when you can promote your passion. I have always had a love for the open water...the adventures above and below. With Beneteau's partnership I look forward to promoting their industry-best line of powerboats and yachts. The beautiful simplicity of their European design and cutting edge performance, with innovations like their 'Airstep' hull (similar to the F-Duct concept in Formula 1), make their boats a thrill to enjoy on the water."
Motorsports This Week on ESPN NASCAR Nationwide Series in Prime Time from Richmond The NASCAR Nationwide Series will race under the lights in prime time in the Toyotacare 250 at Richmond International Raceway on Friday night, April 25, and ESPNEWS will have a live telecast. NASCAR Countdown airs at 6:30 p.m. ET and the green flag will fly at 7:14 p.m. Also from Richmond, ESPN2 will air qualifying for the race at 3:30 p.m. All NASCAR programming on ESPN networks is available on computers, smartphones, tablets, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV via WatchESPN, accessible to fans who receive ESPN’s linear networks as part of their video subscription from an affiliate provider. The race telecast also will air live in Canada on TSN2 and will air in Spanish on ESPN Deportes on April 26 at 4:30 a.m.
McLaren taking Red Bull dispute to high court - Dennis (Update)UPDATE
Was that smoke we saw coming out of Ron Dennis' ears?
Speaking on Sunday, shortly before the Chinese Grand Prix, it was clear that the situation is likely to get a lot messier as Dennis and Horner took aim.
"There's always a way that you do things," Dennis told Sky Sports F1. "In our sport we have lots of technical regulations that we have to adhere to, and in life there are regulations, it's called the law. You have to adhere to it.
"We are obviously not too happy to be contracting people in a correct and professional way only to find that those contracts are disregarded and ignored."
Al Unser Jr. Enters Indy Vintage Race Al Unser Jr., a two-time winner of the Indianapolis 500, is the latest driver to confirm participation in the Sportscar Vintage Racing Ass’n Indy Legends Pro-Am at Indianapolis Motor Speedway June 6-8.
The SVRA, America’s premier vintage racing organization, is creating a return to competition for veterans of the Indianapolis 500 with a 40 minute race of American muscle cars on the Speedway’s 2.43-mile Grand Prix road course on June 8. Unser joins Lyn St. James, Willy T. Ribbs and Mark Dismore as confirmed participants.
“I can’t tell you how much I am looking forward to really racing again at Indy,” said Unser, a two-time IndyCar champion and the winner of 34 IndyCar races including the 1992 and 1994 Indianapolis 500s. “Vintage racing is emerging on a whole new level as a wonderful sport and it’s the real deal when you are going up against the likes of Lyn, Willy T. and Diz. I can’t wait to see the fans – they’re the greatest in the world.”
NASCAR and IndyCar: New Study says ethanol worse that gasoline Biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are worse than gasoline for global warming in the short term, a study shows, challenging the Obama administration's conclusions that they are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help combat climate change.
A $500,000 study paid for by the federal government and released Sunday in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Climate Change concludes that biofuels made with corn residue release 7 percent more greenhouse gases in the early years compared with conventional gasoline.
Darlington TV Ratings (Update)UPDATE In an interesting quirk, last week's NASCAR race from Darlington both matched a record-low and hit a three-year high. Last Saturday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Southern 500 from Darlington earned a 3.6 final rating and 6.0 million viewers on FOX, down 5% in ratings and up 2% in viewership from last year (3.8, 5.9M), and down 5% and up 6%, respectively, from 2012 (3.8, 5.7M). The 3.6 rating is the lowest for NASCAR from Darlington since 2000 (3.5) and tied as the lowest ever for a NASCAR Sprint Cup race on FOX. Despite the 14-year low in ratings, viewership was the highest for the Darlington race since 2011 (7.0M). The 2% increase in viewership also marked NASCAR's first increase in either ratings or viewership this season. Of note, Saturday's NASCAR coverage earned more viewers than the third round of The Masters on CBS earlier in the day (5.9M).
04/14/14 Primetime coverage of "NASCAR Sprint Cup Racing From Darlington " drew 5.921 million viewers on Saturday. In 2013 FOX was the top draw on Saturday (4-13-2013) with its coverage of "NASCAR: Sprint Cup Racing from Texas" (5.908 million viewers, #2; adults 18-49: 1.5, #1).
IndyCar Long Beach TV Rating NBCSN earned a 0.3 U.S. rating and 368,000 viewers for last Sunday’s IndyCar Series race from Long Beach, flat in ratings and down 2% in viewership from last year (0.3, 375K), and flat and down 21%, respectively, from 2012 (0.3, 468K). The audience was the lowest for the race since 2011 (323K) as the NBC Sports Network noose continues to tighten around IndyCar's neck.
It was a great race. Too bad hardly anyone saw it. Check out the top ratings on NBCSN this past week. They're all horrible. No one watches the channel.
Nico Rosberg admitted second was a remarkable return after nearly seeing his race jeopardized by a lack of telemetry between his car and the pit wall.
Rosberg got off the line poorly and had to fight through the field, battling back to 5th at the end of the first lap. Rosberg revealed his poor start was down to the communication problem, and admitted his championship lead is also great consolation having seen Lewis Hamilton take his third win in a row.
The F1 season is effectively over and Hamilton the 2014 champion, such is the Mercedes advantage
Lewis Hamilton is struggling to believe just how big Mercedes' advantage is over the rest of the field after winning his third race in a row at the Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday.
Hamilton led from start to finish and won by over 18 seconds from his team-mate Nico Rosberg at the checkered flag. He is now four points behind Rosberg in the drivers' championship, while Mercedes leads the constructors' by 97 points after just four races.
"I can't believe how amazing the car is," Hamilton said. "The results we're getting are a result of all the hard work we are doing. This team is on a roll, that's for sure. We are going to keep pushing and moving forward, that's what Mercedes want to do by developing and improving the engine and the car. We are going to work hard because obviously the others are pushing to catch us up."
Hamilton was not happy with the car after Friday practice and had to make some changes ahead of Saturday in the hope it would pay off in Sunday's race.
From left, Max Verstappen, Antonio Fuoco, Esteban Ocon
The 5.891 kilometers long Formula 1 circuit at Silverstone in the UK seems to suit the rookie drivers in this year’s FIA Formula 3 European Championship in particular. 17-year-old Esteban Ocon (Prema Powerteam) already having won the second race of the season, his team-mate of the same age, Antonio Fuoco (Prema Powerteam) clinched the winner’s trophy after the third race. The Italian, a protege of the Ferrari Driver Academy, finished ahead of 16-year-old Max Verstappen (Van Amersfoort Racing). Lotus F1 junior driver Esteban Ocon also stepped onto the podium after finishing third. He is leading the FIA Formula 3 European Championship drivers’ standings.
TOYOTA Racing made the perfect start to the 2014 FIA World Endurance Championship season with a one-two finish from pole position in the Six Hours of Silverstone.
The 1000PS, four-wheel-drive TS040 HYBRID won its very first race in convincing fashion thanks to the #8 of Anthony Davidson, Nicolas Lapierre and Sebastien Buemi who take an early lead in the eight-race World Championship.
The #7 of Alex Wurz, Stephane Sarrazin and Kazuki Nakajima completed TOYOTA Racing’s first-ever one-two finish, with a fine second place despite changing weather.
Jack Roush discusses possible engine changes With NASCAR officials focusing on engine changes in the Sprint Cup Series for 2015 that will result in a reduction of horsepower, such a move should involve "a restriction on the intake side," according to Sprint Cup Series team co-owner Jack Roush. Roush, an owner in the series since 1988, isn't suggesting the use of restrictor plates similar to those used at Daytona and Talladega. Instead, he said, a reduction of the throttle bore size "without a plate underneath" would accomplish the objective.
"(It is) straightforward and it is easily reversible if you decided that the quality of the racing was hurt by it," Roush said. "If they want to take 100 horsepower off ... reduce horsepower significantly, the least expensive and most palatable way to do that is with a restriction on the intake side."
Lotus bullied over budget cap axe - Lopez (GMM) Lotus team owner Gerard Lopez on Sunday indicated he was unhappy to have joined the opposition against the introduction of budget caps.
The powerful 'Strategy Group' teams - comprising the 'big four' Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes and McLaren but also Williams and Lotus - recently wrote to Jean Todt indicating they would not approve the FIA president's cap proposal.
Williams is included in the group due to the team's past success and history, while Lotus is also a member after finishing the 2013 season in fourth place.
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