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Ecclestone Would Rather Die Than Give Up Job As F1 CEO, Banker Says  
Bernie Ecclestone is F1.  If he goes to jail the sport will go down the tubes fast given the high cost, hideous noses, boring races and hideous engine sound.  What series will be there to take its place?
F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone "would rather die in a pool of gasoline" than give up his position, a jailed former banker told a German court during the fifth day of Ecclestone's bribery trial, according to Lois Hoyal of the LONDON TIMES.

Gerhard Gribkowsky, who is serving an eight-and-a-half-year sentence on corruption charges, "received millions of dollars" from Ecclestone for "steering the sale of a stake in the motor sport to a buyer who promised to let Mr. Ecclestone keep his position." Gribkowsky: "Bernie Ecclestone would rather die in a pool of gasoline than give up his job as CEO of Formula One. It was clear that Ecclestone would stay on as CEO, exert his control and continue his life's work. Without him, the whole deal would not have flown." LONDON TIMES

In London, Rose Jacobs reported Gribkowsky "gave details of a conversation he said took place in 2004 in Singapore." He told the court that in addition to proposing the $80M sum, Ecclestone described the city “as the last safe harbor” for hiding money. While Gribkowsky said that he "did not take the offer seriously at the time," a year later “I grabbed the carrot.” Ecclestone, who denies the allegations, "listened intently to the proceedings, which are being translated for him in real time." Financial Times More ...
Parker Kligerman To Serve as Backup Driver for Kurt Busch  Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) has tabbed Parker Kligerman to serve as the backup driver for Kurt Busch in the #41 Haas AutomationChevrolet SS during the May 16-17 NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race and the May 22-25 Coca-Cola 600 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Kligerman has made 10 Sprint Cup starts, 51 NASCAR Nationwide Series starts, 50 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts and 23 ARCA Racing Series starts. The 23-year-old from Westport, Connecticut, earned a Camping World Truck Series victory in 2012 at Talladega and has nine ARCA wins, all of which came in 2009 when he finished second in the championship standings. SHR selected Kligerman in the event that Busch, who is attempting to compete in the Indianapolis 500 and Coca-Cola 600 on the same day, is unable to practice, qualify or potentially start his #41 Haas Automation Chevy due to a schedule conflict or logistical issue.

"I'm grateful for the opportunity and want to thank everyone at Stewart-Haas Racing for entrusting me with the Haas Automation Chevy," said Kligerman, who has competed in eight Sprint Cup races in 2014. "For these next two weeks, my sole focus is to help the #41 team compete at a high level, no matter how big or small my role might be." More ...

Pagenaud leads Wednesday practice, turns fastest lap of month  
EJ Viso and Simon Pagenaud
With a lap speed of 226.122 miles per hour, Grand Prix of Indianapolis winner Simon Pagenaud led Wednesday's practice session in preparation for the 98th running of The Indianapolis 500. The driver of the #77 Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda's time was fastest of the week thus far. 2011 Indianapolis 500 Rookie-of-the-Year J.R. Hildebrand was second quick in the #21 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet a mere 0.0472 seconds behind Pagenaud. 2008 Indy 500 winner and reigning Verizon IndyCar Series Champion Scott Dixon was third in the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet.

The session came to an end with about an hour remaining when Jack Hawksworth, driver of the #98 Integrity Energee Drink Honda, spun into the turn 3 SAFER Barrier. Damage to the barrier, and rain resulted in a cessation of running for the day. Hawksworth was checked at the infield medical center, and released.

Three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves was fourth quick, while rookie Mikhail Aleshin was fifth. Ryan Briscoe, Juan Pablo Montoya, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Justin Wilson and Josef Newgarden rounded out the top-10. More ...

IndyCar catches Chevy cheating  INDYCAR announced today post-event infractions from the Grand Prix of Indianapolis, which was held May 10 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

·  INDYCAR officials have fined engine manufacturer Chevrolet $20,000 and penalized it 10 engine manufacturer's points for violations of the engine regulations. Chevrolet was found to have violated Rule 11.2 (Torque Control) and 12.1 (Traction Control) of the Verizon IndyCar Series Engine Regulations.

·  INDYCAR officials have fined Schmidt Peterson Motorsports $1,000 for a technical violation on its No. 77 Verizon IndyCar Series entry driven by Simon Pagenaud. The entrant was found to have violated Rule (Underwing splitter) of the Verizon IndyCar Series rulebook. More ...

IndyCar announces GP of Indy infractions  
Chevrolet fined and penalized for rules infractions from The Grand Prix of Indy.
INDIANAPOLIS (Wednesday, May 14, 2014) - INDYCAR announced today post-event infractions from the Grand Prix of Indianapolis, which was held May 10 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

·  INDYCAR officials have fined engine manufacturer Chevrolet $20,000 and penalized it 10 engine manufacturer's points for violations of the engine regulations. Chevrolet was found to have violated Rule 11.2 (Torque Control) and 12.1 (Traction Control) of the Verizon IndyCar Series Engine Regulations.

·  INDYCAR officials have fined Schmidt Peterson Motorsports $1,000 for a technical violation on its No. 77 Verizon IndyCar Series entry driven by Simon Pagenaud. The entrant was found to have violated Rule (Underwing splitter) of the Verizon IndyCar Series rulebook.

·  INDYCAR officials have fined Penske Racing $1,000 for a technical violation on its No. 3 Verizon IndyCar Series entry driven by Helio Castroneves. The entrant was found to have violated Rule 14.15.7 (Differential assembly) of the Verizon IndyCar Series rulebook.

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.

Video: F1 megaphone exhaust sound  Here is how the Mercedes sounded this morning at slower speeds using the experimental megaphone exhaust to make the car louder.  It still sounds hideous.  Like we said, fans already bought tickets for this year's F1 races, but will they pay such prices and come back next year, or will they be so disappointed they stay home and save their money and F1 begins a rapid decline into oblivion?

Maldonado quickest on final morning of test  Lotus driver Pastor Maldonado set the standard on the final morning of running at the second in-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. The Venezuelan delivered a series of quick attempts at the Spanish venue to end the session with a best time of 1:26.311, leaving him comfortably clear of the field.

Kimi Raikkonen enjoyed a more productive morning in his Ferrari and ended second fastest.

Mercedes trialed a 'megaphone' exhaust on Rosberg's W05 Hybrid during the first couple of hours of running but this did not have any effect on the noise levels. The German headed into lunch third quickest. More ...

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

  • Look at the size of that exhaust!.  How silly.  A Band-Aid fix for VERY expensive cars, many of which are slower than GP2 cars.
    Ecclestone desperate to cling to F1 power - witness
  • Smedley happy to leave Ferrari wind tunnel
  • Lauda to end up Mercedes driver 'nanny' - Berger
  • Fatigue and frustration explain Vettel struggle - Berger
  • Hamilton wants Mercedes' rivals to catch up
  • F1 gets first look and sound of Merc 'megaphone'
  • McLaren fails to take up Formula One board seat
  • 'Negative' reaction to trumpet exhaust look, sound New
  • Red Bull not interested in Mercedes power New More ...
Formula E Raises $68M From Qualcomm, Amura Capital For First Season (Update)  UPDATE Formula E Holdings, series promoters of the FIA Formula E Championship, today concluded its first round of financing, attracting a new wave of investors totaling 50 million euros.

The main investors in this round are Qualcomm Incorporated, through its venture capital arm Qualcomm Ventures, and Andorran-based private equity fund Amura Capital. Both have committed to the new electric race series, alongside existing investor Causeway Media Partners – owners of the Boston Celtics NBA basketball team. The three join current shareholders Spanish entrepreneur Enrique Banuelos and Alejandro Agag, CEO of Formula E Holdings. More ...

Marquez re-signs with Repsol Honda team  
Marquez and Honda undefeated in 2014
Honda Racing Corporation is pleased to announce the renewal of the contract with 2013 World Champion, Marc Marquez, for a further two years.

The young Spaniard took the MotoGP World by storm winning the Championship in his rookie season last year. It was a priority for HRC to re-sign the young sensation who has won every race so far this season – all from pole position. Since joining the Factory outfit – the Repsol Honda Team – Marc has finished on the podium in all but two of his twenty-two MotoGP races. He’s taken ten victories, six second’s and four third’s. He’s also accumulated thirteen pole positions in the premier class.

He arrives at this weekend’s French GP leading the Rider’s Championship by 28 points after just four rounds. More ...

track news
Puma to sponsor Indian Grand Prix circuit  Sportswear giant Puma has signed a deal to become the official merchandise sponsor of the Buddh International Circuit, the venue for the inaugural Indian Formula One Grand Prix, for all upcoming racing events.

Although it did not release exact details of the deal, Puma also announced it will continue as the official licensing partner for Ferrari branded products and the official supplier of team and race wear for Scuderia Ferrari.

Commenting on the deals, Mr. Rajiv Mehta, managing director of Puma India said: "It is our pleasure to be associated with the Buddh International Circuit this year. We see this association as a pioneering effort in the field of motorsports merchandise in India which suits the needs of the million fans to reflect their spirit and passion for the sport in style. Also, our extended association with Ferrari is a great benefit to the brand as they are an ideal motorsport partner for us in every respect."    Meanwhile, premium British luggage brand Antler has extended its partnership with the Marussia Virgin Racing Formula One team for the upcoming Japanese Grand Prix. More ...

Rain ends Tuesday practice at Indy with Viso on top (Update)  UPDATE Sebastian Saavedra pulled on his helmet and stepped into the No. 17 KV AFS Racing car May 13 just like he had dozens of times. He logged only seven laps in the red and yellow car before practice for the 98th Running of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race was curtailed by rain, but the practice time was significant.

Saavedra joined 29 other drivers who totaled 1,024 miles without incident. Thirty-one drivers have registered 4,041.

E.J. Viso, filling in for James Hinchcliffe in the No. 27 United Fiber & Data car for the third consecutive day, topped the speed chart at 224.488 mph (40.0912 seconds). Andretti Autosport teammate Kurt Busch, seeking to contest both the Indianapolis 500 and stock car race in Concord, N.C., on May 25, posted his fastest lap of the month (224.159 mph) in the No. 26 Suretone car. More ...

Porsche sued over Walker/Rodas crash  Kristine Rodas, the widow of Roger Rodas -- who in November 2013 was killed along with “Fast and Furious” actor Paul Walker in a Porsche Carrera GT crash -- has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the automaker .

The suit filed against Porsche Cars North America says Rodas was driving at 55 mph, not in excess of 90 mph as the official crash investigators determined. It also says the vehicle lacked a proper crash cage and safety features in the gas tank that could have saved the men. Finally, the suit claims a failure in the Porsche’s suspension forced it to careen out of control in Santa Clarita, Calif., striking a lamppost and several trees before it came to rest and burst into flames. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages from Porsche Cars North America. More ...
National Guard sponsorship resulted in zero new recruits (2nd Update)  UPDATE #2 The following report of last week's hearing and McCaskill's position is posted on the senator's website:

Each year the National Guard spends more than $56 million on sports marketing with NASCAR and IndyCar,, which amounts to 37 percent of its marketing and advertising budget. However in 2012, not a single National Guard soldier was recruited from the NASCAR sponsorship program. In 2013, the program generated fewer than 8,000 leads-far from the roughly 1,000,000 leads the National Guard needs to meet its annual recruiting goal of 50,000 soldiers.

"I really like NASCAR. And I love the National Guard even more than I like NASCAR. This hearing is not about demonizing NASCAR or the National Guard, this hearing is simply about return on investment of federal tax dollars-[it's about] whether or not federal money is being used wisely, for the intended purpose, and getting the result desired as a result of that investment." said McCaskill, a former Missouri State Auditor and Chairman of the Subcommittee on Financial & Contracting Oversight. "As I stated in February when examining the Guard's Recruiting Assistance Program, I understand that aggressive recruiting is key to maintaining the strength of our military, but Congress has a responsibility to ensure that every taxpayer dollar spent produces measurable results. In this environment of dwindling recruiting budgets, I want to understand why the Army National Guard has maintained sports sponsorships that fail to reach target recruiting demographics, and also provide less value per dollar than other forms of marketing." More ...

12 cars selected for Indy pitstop competition  The following 12 Verizon IndyCar Series teams have been selected for the Pit Stop Competition. On Coors Light Carb Day:

Car# Driver /Entrant
2 Juan Pablo Montoya / Penske Motorsports
3 Helio Castroneves / Team Penske
8 Ryan Briscoe / NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing
9 Scott Dixon / Target Chip Ganassi Racing
10 Tony Kanaan / Target Chip Ganassi Racing
12 Will Power / Team Penske
14 Takuma Sato / A.J. Foyt Enterprises
15 Graham Rahal / Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
22 Sage Karam / Dreyer and Reinbold – Kingdom Racing
28 Ryan Hunter-Reay / Andretti Autosport
77 Simon Pagenaud / Schmidt Peterson Hamilton
83 Charlie Kimball / Chip Ganassi Racing Teams

Hinchcliffe out at least two more days  Medical Update on James Hinchcliffe

Verizon IndyCar Series driver James Hinchcliffe was evaluated May 13 by the INDYCAR medical team in conjunction with its neurosurgical consultant. INDYCAR Medical Director Dr. Michael Olinger said that Hinchcliffe is progressing well and has been cleared to begin light training with his athletic trainer.

Hinchcliffe, who was diagnosed with a concussion from an on-track incident during the Grand Prix of Indianapolis on May 10, has not been cleared to resume driving duties. He will be re-evaluated May 15.

Rain shortened Indy 500 practice quotes  
SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet): “Well it ended up being a short day today. We got rained out after about an hour or so of running. We worked again on long runs and race preparation in the Target car. It looked like the weather isn’t going to be much better tomorrow so we’ll just have to sit and wait. Typical May weather for Indianapolis.”

TONY KANAAN (No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet): “Not a lot on track today unfortunately. We learned a little bit but really didn’t have a chance to go through our run plan like we would have liked to because of the rain.”

RYAN BRISCOE (No. 8 NTT DATA Chevrolet): “We didn’t get a lot of on-track time today because of the weather, but I think we still made some really positive strides forward in the laps we did get completed. We were able to make some solid race runs and get the No. 8 NTT DATA Chevrolet into traffic. We’ll take any time we can get out there, but we’re really hoping that the weather can come around and we can get a full day in on the track soon.” More ...
tv news
Motorsports This Week on ESPN and ABC  
Indianapolis 500 Qualifying on ABC, ESPN3
Qualifying for the Indianapolis 500 will have a new format this year and race fans will be able to watch the action live on ABC-TV and on ESPN3, ESPN’s live, multi-screen sports network, on Saturday and Sunday, May 17-18 from Indianapolis Motor Speedway. ESPN3 is accessible online at WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app and streamed on televisions through ESPN on Xbox LIVE to Gold members, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Roku. Verizon IndyCar Series drivers will be deciding the 33-car starting grid for the May 25 running of the Indianapolis 500, which will air live on ABC. The schedule: More ...
Chilton tops Barcelona F1 post-race test  Your eyes are not deceiving you.  A Marussia was fastest today as F1 teams began the second in-season test of 2014 at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.  It is likely the Marussia was in qualifying trim and the other cars on full tanks.

Today was a pretty normal test day. Teams completed a lot of practice starts and tried a few different things with the car during the afternoon once the track dried out a bit. Of course, test days aren't as much fun as a race but it's part of the job. More ...
United Fiber & Data adds sponsorship to Andretti Rallycross team  United Fiber & Data (UFD) announced today that they have joined Andretti Autosport's expanding sponsor portfolio in signing as an associate sponsor with the 7UP Volkswagen Polo driven by Scott Speed. The sponsorship unveils this weekend at the Top Gear Festival in Barbados, round one of the 2014 Global Rallycross season.

"United Fiber & Data is thrilled to announce our entry into Global Rallycross with our sponsorship of the No. 77 7UP Volkswagen," said United Fiber & Data director and founder Bill Hynes. "We saw Global Rallycross as a natural fit for our company and our culture. It's a revolutionary racing platform where challenge, high performance, speed and talent converge to bring you something you haven't seen before." More ...

Roger Penske has the solution to IndyCar’s standing start woes  IndyCar drivers have appeared to struggle with getting away on standing starts, the most notable and recent example being the incident in Saturday’s Grand Prix of Indianapolis in which Sebastian Saavedra stalled from pole and was hit savagely from behind by Carlos Munoz and Mikhail Aleshin.

Roger Penske knows why. And, as tends to be the case, he also has the solution.

“There was a point there where you wanted to run a long first gear (for the Grand Prix of Indianapolis),” Penske said during an event yesterday at the Penske Racing shop in Mooresville, North Carolina. “It would be advantageous during the race. If you’ve ever tried to start your car in third gear, that’s what they were trying to do. More ...

Chevy Signs On As Official Truck Of NHRA In Multiyear Deal  Chevrolet today announced that it has signed on to become the official truck of the NHRA, replacing Ford. Financial terms of the deal were not available. The multiyear agreement means Chevrolet's Silverado and Suburban brands will be featured prominently at the track during NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series events. They will be used by the NHRA Safety Safari, the safety personnel crew that works at dragways during competition.

GM’s Chevrolet brand last year signed on to title sponsor the U.S. Nationals held each Labor Day weekend near Indianapolis. GM Performance Division Manager Craig Shantz said, “This sponsorship increases our involvement. It’s the right fit. Chevrolet and Chevrolet Performance have a very loyal fan base involved with the NHRA and drag racing." Tripp Mickle/Sportsbusinessdaily.com

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

  • Mateschitz still thinks Red Bull can catch Mercedes this year.  Wishful thinking Dietrich.
    Teams' cost saving proposals 'ridiculous' - Todt
  • Red Bull not giving up 2014 battle - Mateschitz
  • Barcelona begins talks for F1 deal through 2026
  • 'No one' ready to succeed Ecclestone - Mateschitz
  • Red Bull to assess 2014 chase in Austria - Marko
  • Rosberg coping with Hamilton's dominance - Wolff
  • Massa 'not worried' about latest criticism
  • Vettel thinks chassis change helped in Spain
  • McLaren may test Honda power in 2014
  • Mattiacci: We have to step up a gear immediately New
  • Smedley calls for Massa investigation New
  • No reason to cancel Russia GP - Todt New
  • Witness backs bribery claims in Ecclestone trial New
  • Mateschitz doubts Red Bull can catch Mercedes New More ...
Trans Am Series heads to Canada, Ron Fellows set for Trans Am return  The Trans Am Series has seen a multitude of legends grace its paddock over its 48-year existence, but next week at Round 4 of the 2014 Trans Am Championship, a part of the Castrol Victoria Day Speedfest Weekend, one of those legends will return to that paddock once again: Ron Fellows. 

In what will be his 100th Trans Am start, Fellows will make his return to America’s Road Racing Series on his home track, as both a Trans Am entrant and part track-owner, racing in the No. 6 Derhaag Motorsports Chevrolet Corvette.

“It would be really special for Ron to win his 100th race, and on his home track,” said Jim Derhaag, Owner of Derhaag Motorsports.  “Ron and I go back to when he started racing in Trans Am and I was driving as well—we’ve been friends a long, long time; I can’t think of anybody I’d rather run.  Ron has driven for us in the past; and he and his wife, Lynda, are two of the nicest people you’ll meet and good friends.” More ...

racing news
Richard Petty Driving Experience coming to SPARC track  Add NASCAR driving legend Richard Petty to the starting lineup at developer Bill Schottenstein’s Sports Pavilion and Automotive Research Center, better known as SPARC near Columbus.

The Richard Petty Driving Experience will offer its motorsports driving academy as a partner and tenant in the transformation of the Cooper Stadium site into an auto-themed complex.

That project has already signed Michael Waltrip Racing as a partner and the Midwestern Auto Group dealership as a tenant. More ...
Will Toyota continue to destroy Audi or will new aerodynamics for Le Mans help?  
The WEC version of the Audi R18 e-tron quattro features a body with higher downforce
Toyota has been destroying Audi on the race track so far this year so it was back to the drawing boards for Audi.  The Audi R18 e-tron quattro uses less fuel than any of its predecessors. In addition to the powertrain, aerodynamics makes a significant contribution to achieving excellent lap times with low fuel consumption. At round two of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) at Spa (Belgium), the second body version of the new Audi R18 e-tron quattro made its debut. It has less aerodynamic drag for the Le Mans high-speed circuit.

Even the timeline shows the close link between the race car’s aerodynamic development and its basic concept. The aerodynamicists of Audi Sport were involved in the determination of the concept for the current race car from the summer of 2012. “We typically begin with a rough initial layout,” explains Jan Monchaux, Head of Aerodynamics at Audi Sport. “The engine concept, the wheelbase and the schematic drawing of the vehicle provide us with the key data. We subsequently design the first basic aerodynamic shape. In the next step, we analyze its performance potential by means of CFD.” Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) calculates phenomena of fluid dynamics using model equations. In the initial development stage, this eliminates the need for considerably more complex wind tunnel tests. “We then continue to elaborate the strengths of the initial design step by step and reduce potential deficits in the process,” adds Jan Monchaux. More ...
NASCAR race fans have more I-85 lanes in Charlotte, but.....  Fans headed to Charlotte Motor Speedway for NASCAR races and other events the next two weekends will have access to more lanes on Interstate 85 than in years past, but authorities aren’t sure if that’s a good thing.

The N.C. Department of Transportation earlier this year finished most of the work on expanding I-85 from Bruton Smith Boulevard north to near N.C. 73 in Cabarrus County. Two lanes have been added in that area.

“But I’m a little concerned about that,” N.C. Highway Patrol Sgt. Glenn Stokes said Monday. “We’re hoping fans follow the same route they took the past few years." More ...

Virgin Racing announces Jaime Alguersuari & Sam Bird  
Virgin boss Branson (C) with his two drivers
Virgin has today announced that Jaime Alguersuari and Sam Bird will join the Virgin Racing Formula E Team to compete in the 2014/2015 all-electric FIA Formula E Championship.

Spaniard Alguersuari became the youngest-ever driver to make a Formula One race appearance in 2009 when he competed for Toro Rosso. After success at junior level, he moved into British Formula 3, once again making records by becoming the youngest-ever driver to take the title during his debut year (2008), securing five wins along the way and earning him a Formula One test with Red Bull. In 2009 he signed for the Toro Rosso F1 Team producing two top-10 finishes in his first full season (2010) and remaining with the team the following year before switching to become the Pirelli tire test driver for F1. More ...

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