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DATE News (chronologically)
05/16/15
nassprint

Denny Hamlin Wins Pole for Sprint All Star Race
Denny Hamlin won the pole position for tonight's 31st running of the NASCAR Sprint All Star race at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Hamlin completed two laps around the 1.5-mile oval and a four-tire pit stop with a time of 111.227 (145.648 mph) to secure his first-career pole in the annual all-star event. Hamlin's previous best start was third in 2012. He has never won the event in nine starts.

Greg Biffle, who raced his way into the All Star field with a victory in one of the two segments in Friday night's Sprint Showdown, qualified second with a lap of 112.000 (144.643 mph). Brad Keselowski was third, followed by Showdown winner Clint Bowyer and Kasey Kahne.

Sprint Fan Vote winner Danica Patrick qualified sixth for her second all star appearance.

Pete McCole reporting from Charlotte Motor Speedway

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05/16/15
nhra

Brown, Pedregon, Line, Stoffer maintain Atlanta qualifying dominance
Cruz Pedregon secured the No. 1 qualifier in Funny Car on Saturday at the Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.

Antron Brown (Top Fuel), Jason Line (Pro Stock), and Karen Stoffer (Pro Stock Motorcycle) also were No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at Atlanta Dragway. The race is the seventh of 24 events during the 2015 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season.

Pedregon’s 4.010-second pass at 313.95 mph in his Snap-on Tools Toyota Camry on Friday went unmatched through Saturday’s final two sessions, earning him the top starting spot.

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05/16/15
irl

Indy 500 Qualifying rainout quotes

A wet day at Indy
A wet day at Indy
Rob Chinn/AR1.com
WILL POWER (No. 1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): "It's raining, and I think INDYCAR has got a pretty good plan to run tomorrow and get everyone through the line and have a Fast Nine. If anything, it'll be even more exciting, having it all really compressed. Looking forward to it. It's really difficult to see where everyone stacks up, but I felt very comfortable and I wasn't so much yesterday. Yeah, we'll see what happens."

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): "It's a little bit of a disappointment that we didn't get to qualify today because the Team Penske cars were very strong in the practice sessions. Hopefully tomorrow the forecast will break up a bit and we can see if the Verizon Chevy has the speed to win the pole position. I've been happy with the car even though we continue to struggle a bit with the balance. We are confident that we know what direction we need to go with the weather. It's going to be a fast, exciting qualifying session, I know that."

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05/16/15
irl

Late afternoon update from IMS
Ryan Hunter-Reay
I caught up with Ryan Hunter-Reay and asked him about the decision to withdraw his time. Hunter-Reay, of course, qualified along with Carlos Huertas before the session was postponed due to rain. The defending race winner was okay with ruling noting,  "Those are the rules. It would have been a different story had more cars qualified. Tomorrow's conditions will not be the same as today's were. And I should be able to get the same speed."

"The rules," Hunter-Reay referenced was specifically rule 8.4.8.1 pertaining to Saturday Indianapolis 500 qualifying:

If the time allotted for qualifications has expired on Saturday without every Car having been given its Guaranteed Attempt, INDYCAR shall determine the revised qualifications procedure. This may include without limitation all Cars qualifying on the next available day.

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05/16/15
irl

IMS to honor Saturday tickets tomorrow
After initially saying that ticket stubs from today's weather-postponed qualifying session would not be honored tomorrow, Indianapolis Motor Speedway has changed their position. Saturday tickets will be honored for Sunday qualifying at IMS. For more information see here.

AR1 Staff Report

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05/16/15
irl

IMS cancels track activity for the day (Update - Sunday sched) UPDATE Below is a Memo from INDYCAR regarding Qualification Procedures for today and tomorrow.
  • All of today's activities, procedures and times have been cancelled and deleted
  • Schedule for tomorrow Sunday May 17th:

8:00-8:20 Practice Group 1
8:20-8:40 Practice Group 2
*No Guaranteed Green Flag Time
10:-1:00 Qualifications 0 All Cars 1 Time Thru
1:45-2:30 Fast 9
3:00-3:45 Group 2 Qualifying (Last 4 from Qualifications)



05/16/15 We have just received word that track activity at IMS has been cancelled for the day. We will pass along more information as we receive it.

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05/16/15
IRL

Saturday Qualification -- Cancelled
All activities for IMS have been cancelled for the day. Qualification will happen tomorrow, with runs will start at 10:00, followed by a Bump Day for cars 31-34, followed by a Fast Nine contest. All cars get 1 chance at qualification unless they fall into either the Fast Nine or Bump Day groups.

The qualification runs today for Carlos Huertos and Ryan Hunter-Reay are wiped away, gone, so sorry, didn't happen. The Jigger Award lurks.....

-- Lucille Dust and Tim Wohlford, reporting from IMS

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05/16/15
IRL

Saturday Qualification -- Hulman Co. Invests in Ark....
Rain, rain doesn't seem to be going away.
God does make little green apples, and it DOES rain in Indiana in the summertime. At 1:30 pm, the speedway is in the middle of a downpour, and at the beginning end of a long blob of rain heading this way. Indy in May is a place and time where everyone turns into a meteorologist, and the consensus is that we're pretty much hosed for the next few hours, if not all day.

Before the rains came, we did have 2 1/2 qualifying runs. Carlos Huertas managed 4 laps at 228.235 mph, which should be enough to get him into the show. Ryan Hunter-Reay then went out and posted a 229.485 in what he termed a "banker's lap." Scott Dixon then went out and started what should've been a provisional pole run, but rains came halfway into his run. This set him up for a Jigger Awards.

Jigger Award?

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05/16/15
motogp

Marquez on pole at LeMans
Marquez waves to the crowd
Marquez waves to the crowd
Today in qualifying for the GP of France, Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez stormed to an impressive pole position - half a second faster than second place Andrea Dovizioso at LeMans.

Brief rain showers created mixed conditions in FP4 but gave the riders an opportunity to test the wet weather settings on their bikes. However, by the time Q2 began the track was almost completely dry. Marc took provisional pole on his first exit and then on his final lap he was able to improve by over 0.7s – with his time of 1’32.246 – to secure his front spot start, at the circuit where he achieved his first ever pole in GP racing in 2009 (125cc).

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05/16/15
irl

Day 1 qualifying order and confusing procedures for Indy 500 (Update)
UPDATE 
Indianapolis 500 DAY 1 Qualifying PROCEDURE

First-day qualifying determines the 33 provisional positions in the field based on the fastest four-lap aggregate times. All cars are guaranteed one four-lap opportunity to qualify, provided the car is properly presented in the initial qualifying line. Proper presentation for the guaranteed opportunity consists of four steps: 1) having the car in the qualifying line at the designated time; 2) passing technical inspection; 3) remaining in the qualifying line from tech inspection to pit lane (no changes can be made to the car following tech inspection other than tire pressure and/or front/rear wing adjustments); 4) leaving pit lane to begin the qualifying attempt when instructed by Race Control.

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05/16/15
IRL

Saturday Qualification -- Delayed, and maybe not even then?
Castroneves over 233 MPH this morning
Castroneves over 233 MPH this morning
Qualification is now set to start at 12:30, weather permitting. And weather is a huge issue -- a massive rain cell is moving in from the west towards Indy.

Morning practice saw speeds around 45/100ths faster than yesterday, translating to about 3 mph. Early practice was on a cool, clean track, but the practices were both altered by light rain. Helio Castroneves topped the charts at 38.5482 / 233.474 mph, but JR Hildebrand electrified the crowd earlier with a tow-aided 232.985. In all 11 cars topped the 39 second mark: Castroneves, Hildebrand, Pagenaud, Power, Montoya, Hinchcliffe, Dixon, Chaves, Kimball, Munoz and Sato.

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05/16/15
IRL

Morning update from Indy
Due to the wet track practice did not happen at 8:30 am. We hear unofficially a 2 hour delay due to a wet track. Some of the teams went out to pit lane, only to return to their garage. Lucille Dust reporting from Indy

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05/16/15
irl

Crews drying track at Indy
The trucks are out early at Indianapolis today drying the track after an overnight shower. 

The forecast for Day 1 of Indy 500 qualifying calls for cloudy skies and a 50% chance of showers and thunderstorms this afternoon with temperatures in the mid-70s.

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05/16/15
nassprint

France defends NASCAR decision about waiver for Kyle Busch
NASCAR CEO and Chairman Brian France defended NASCAR's decision to waive the 26-race rule on Wednesday and allow Kyle Busch to be eligible for the Chase. Although the sanctioning body granted the waiver, it doesn't mean the Joe Gibbs racer will automatically qualify for the playoff. That's where France says the challenge lies. "The real beauty in the way the championship is now decided, you have a little bit of flexibility to crown your champion," France said. "As opposed to the old days, when it was an accumulation of all the points. Now, you're resetting it any way. You still have to get into the Chase with a win. Once you get there, that's when the real work begins - those final 10 races and to survive that. I think the flexibility the format adds we're still rewarding the best driver in a given year is helpful for us and allows us when things like Kyle Busch happens or something else that are out of a driver's control we at least have a tool left in our tool kit so we can put them back in."

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05/16/15
irl

IndyCar allowing different body kit options
As the two overhead photos of Simon Pagenaud's Chevy shows, IndyCar is allowing teams to change their body kits in an effort to get speeds up close to the track record (but not break it until next year for the 100th running of the Indy 500). We guess they are not homologated after all.

And IndyCar is allowing the teams to run asymmetrical bodywork - in other words run the bodywork shown in the upper photo on one side of the car and the one from the lower photo on the other side.

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05/16/15
irl

$30 million IMS makeover
View along what was Georgetown Road
Like any good host, Indianapolis Motor Speedway is redecorating for its biggest party ever, the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 in 2016.

Officials replaced the scoring pylon last year and video boards last month. The next phase is a biggie, more than $30 million worth of improvements, The Indianapolis Star has learned.

The roundabout that recently connected four city streets outside Turn 1 will gain a plaza with a wing-shaped art structure, bricks and accents in Speedway green, commonly known as forest green. The designer called the area IMS' new "Kodak moment" location.

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05/16/15
irl

Video: Graham Rahal on Driving Honda's Low-Drag Qualifying Setup
The RACER Channel speaks with Graham Rahal, who was one of the first Honda drivers to try the low-drag rear wing qualifying setup. The Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing drivers shares his thoughts on the car's stability, and Honda's chances in qualifying.



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05/16/15
nassprint

Kahne on strategy for the NASCAR All-Star Race
KASEY KAHNE AND KEITH RODDEN, NO 5 TIME WARNER CABLE CHEVROLET SS met with media and discussed strategy for the All-Star Race, the new format, having a good start to the season, the recent test at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the possible 2016 package, and more. Full Transcript:

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05/16/15
pwc

O'Connell on Pole at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park Return
Johnny O'Connell
Johnny O'Connell
Richard Prince/GM
Cadillac Racing driver Johnny O'Connell will start his No. 3 Cadillac ATS-V.R from the pole position for the first of two Pirelli World Challenge races this weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (Mosport). Teammate Andy Pilgrim will start eighth.

Cadillac Racing has rebounded from the fire at Barber Motorsport Park three weeks ago to sit on pole for race one which will take the green tomorrow at 1:15 p.m. ET.  Johnny O'Connell (Flowery Branch, Ga.) drove the test car, which was commissioned to become the No. 3 Cadillac ATS-V.R for this weekendto top honors in qualifying posting a time of 1:15.296.  The pole position is the second for the all-new ATS-V.R. The first was teammate Pilgrim in the second race at St. Petersburg.  Pilgrim will start his No. 8 Cadillac ATS-V.R from the fourth row in eighth based upon his time of 1:15.957.

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05/16/15
irl

Indy: Q&A with Sage Karam and Gabby Chaves
MODERATOR:  Welcome to the Economaki Press Conference Room for the 99th running of the Indianapolis 500.  We take a look at these two fine young drivers' work today, sixth and seventh overall, Sage at over 230, and Gabby at over 229.

Gabby, good to have you with us.  Gabby Chaves joins us.  Talk about your day.  We've not had you in a press conference so far that I can remember this month.

GABBY CHAVES:  We made some good changes.  The car was working well.  It's definitely been the hardest day out there for me.  I think here today and tomorrow and Sunday will be the hardest days.  I think once we get back to race trim, downforce configurations, it will be a lot easier again.  But I'm sure you'll hear the same from Sage; it's not easy out there.  Especially I think the track conditions weren't very favorable as well.  Very strong winds.  Track was very greasy as well and definitely made for some tough times out there.

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05/16/15
nassprint

Danica Patrick wins NASCAR Fan Vote
NASCAR Superstar Danica Patrick

Danica Patrick was revealed to be the winner of the Sprint Fan Vote on Friday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway following the Sprint Showdown.

That will put Patrick in the field for Saturday night's NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race (9 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1, MRN, SiriusXM).

The Stewart-Haas Racing driver is the first person to win the Sprint Fan Vote twice, earning the honor in 2013.

Earlier in the week, Miss Sprint Cup revealed that Clint Bowyer (Michael Waltrip Racing), Kyle Larson (Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates), Patrick (Stewart-Haas Racing), Martin Truex Jr. (Furniture Row Racing) and Josh Wise (Phil Parsons Racing) were the top-five vote getters.

Since the Sprint Fan Vote was instituted in 2004, only one driver -- Kasey Kahne in 2008 -- has won the vote and gone on to win the race. The 11 fan vote winners have averaged a finish of 14.27 in the Sprint All-Star Race.

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05/16/15
nastruck

Kahne Records 200th Win for Chevrolet in NASCAR Trucks (Update)
Kasey Kahne - Did he cheat to win?
UPDATE Kahne's No. 00 Chevrolet, however, failed post-race inspection. NASCAR deemed the front of the truck too low on both sides and too high in the right rear. The sanctioning body will take the truck to its nearby research-and-development center for further evaluation.
 
If penalties are forthcoming, they will be announced next week. (Remember in NASCAR if you cheat to win you still get to keep your win, it costs you money, but you are still the winner. Cheaters do proper in NASCAR). 

Kahne's margin of victory was a mere 0.005 seconds, tied for second closest in series history behind the .002-second margin of Kyle Busch over Aric Almirola at Talladega in October 2010.

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05/15/15
nastruck

Kasey Kahne On Truck Series Pole at Charlotte
In his first Camping World Truck Series start in more than three years, Kasey Kahne shook off the rust and raced to the pole position in Friday's qualifying for the NC Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Kahne rallied in the third round of qualifying to beat out rookie Erik Jones for the top spot with a lap of 29.778 (181.342 mph) for his first-career Truck Series pole.

Jones, who was looking for his second-straight pole, settled for second with a lap of 29.833 (181.008 mph). Matt Tifft qualified third, followed by Brad Keselowski and rookie Daniel Hemric.

Pete McCole reporting from Charlotte Motor Speedway

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05/15/15
IRL

Fast Friday Fizzles at IMS
Simon Pagenaud
Simon Pagenaud pulled a fast lap of 230.698, narrowly -- and we mean, narrowly, as in point-zero-zero-sevenths of a second -- edging out Scott Dixon's fast lap set earlier in the day. However, Dixon's laps were set mostly without the benefit of a tow, and therefore is the favorite for tomorrow's provisional pole award. Tony Kanaan was third fastest, Marco Andretti fourth fastest (and hence the fastest Honda). Will Power and Sage Karam rounded out the top 6, who were the only cars in excess of 230 mph.

Yesterday, Carlos Munoz posted a top speed of 230.121, which means that (all things being equal, which they probably weren't, but let's play this one out, shall we?) the extra boost accounted for a little more than half a mile per hour, roughly 1/10th of a second.

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05/15/15
irl

Pagenaud tops Fast-Friday at Indy
Simon Pagenaud

Six drivers went over 230 MPH Friday at Indianapolis in preparation for Saturday qualifying for the 99th running of the Indy 500 next weekend.  On a day not conducive to really fast speeds, Simon Pagenaud put his No. 22 Chevy at the top of the charts with a speed of 230.698 MPH to lead a Chevy 1-2-3.

Scott Dixon was 2nd in his No. 9 Ganassi Chevy followed by his teammate Tony Kanaan.

The fastest Honda was Marco Andretti in 4th at 230.312 MPH.

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05/15/15
nassprint

Paul Menard Wins Pole For Sprint Showdown
Paul Menard beat out Greg Biffle to take the pole position for tonight's 40-lap Sprint Showdown at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Menard turned in a lap of 28.470 seconds (189.673 mph) in the second round of qualifying to move ahead of Biffle and claim his first career pole in the all-star event.

Biffle, who led the opening round of qualifying, will start on the outside front row with a lap of 28.472 (189.660 mph). David Ragan, Clint Bowyer and Austin Dillon rounded out the top five.

The winner of each of the two 20-lap segments of tonight's race will advance to Saturday night's Sprint All Star Race, along with the winner of the Sprint Fan Vote, to complete the 20-car field.
Pete McCole reporting from Charlotte Motor Speedway

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05/15/15
nassprint

Arctic Cat Joins Bass Pro Shops for All-Star Race
Tony Stewart
Tony Stewart to Drive No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Arctic Cat Chevrolet

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. – Arctic Cat, one of the most widely recognized and respected names in the snowmobile, ATV and side-by-side industry, will join Bass Pro Shops as the co-primary sponsor of Tony Stewart in the 31st annual NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race Saturday night at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway.

Stewart, the three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion, will make his 17th appearance in the All-Star Race in the No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Arctic Cat Chevrolet SS. Stewart won the 2009 All-Star Race, which was the first victory of any kind for Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), the team Stewart co-owns with Haas Automation founder Gene Haas.

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05/15/15
IRL

Fast Friday at IMS - Fast, but Arie is safe
At 3:40 pm, Scott Dixon tops the speed charts with a 39.point.damn.near.even, 230.643 mph. Tony Kanaan, Marco Andretti and Sage Karam are also north of 230. However, the track has heated up, and the winds picked up, so conditions don't favor a strong run right now. For now Arie Luyendyk’s track record is safe.

The big buzz in today's practice has to do with the two Chevy blowover crashes -- one yesterday with Newgarden, and one on Wednesday with Castroneves. First, why did two experienced drivers have their cars snap around at comparatively low speeds? And of course, why did they leave the ground after impact? Rumor has it that Chevy went back to the wind tunnel to investigate both questions. 'Cause rumor has it that, at least in one of the crashes, the team was trying out a qualifying setup where the rear wing would've been laid back to reduce drag. And of course, the Honda people hope that the Chevy teams won't be able to do much of a custom setup for qualification, giving them a better chance at the Pole.

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05/15/15
irl

First All-Women Racing Team Set to Compete in the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 in 2016
Moved to article section.

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05/15/15
track news

Mayor tells those wanting to save Irwindale Speedway it is 'out of our hands'
Irwindale, Calif., Mayor Mark Breceda told a group of motorsports supporters looking to save Irwindale Speedway that the matter is “out of our hands.’’

Breceda made the comments during a city council meeting Wednesday after supporters voiced opposition to a decision to demolish Irwindale Speedway, which has hosted NASCAR-sanctioned races, for a 700,000-square foot outlet mall, according to a report by The Pasadena Star-News.

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05/15/15
nassprint

NASCAR upgrades pit road safety rules following rash of fires
In what appears to be in response to a rash of fuel-related fires on pit road during recent races, NASCAR this week issued an email to all pit crew members outlining new safety requirements, which will take effect the first week of June.

In the email, a copy of which was obtained by The Observer, NASCAR notes that some safety gear, which have been recommended for pit crew members, will soon become mandatory.

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05/15/15
f1

F1 approves 'faster cars' for 2017
(GMM)  F1 on Friday confirmed that things are changing for 2017.

Earlier, media reports suggested that Thursday's meeting of the Strategy Group had resulted only in more dithering and indecision.

In fact, a raft of changes has been agreed, with the intention of pushing them through the F1 Commission and World Motor Sport Council.

In Friday's statement, issued jointly by the FIA and Bernie Ecclestone, it was said the need for change to address "the current challenges that F1 faces" had been recognized.

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05/15/15
irl

Morning update for Fast Friday at Indy
The Butt Bumpers on the Chevy cars (bottom photo) are much bigger than those on the Hondas (Top Photo)
Good morning from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.  Today is Fast Friday and it promises to be very fast. There is a rainbow across the middle of the race track this morning.  Rain just started to fall and is predicted off and on for today. 

It will be interesting to see what unfolds today.  The Chevrolet teams have removed the fin that was part of the aero kit that appeared on the cars for the Indy Grand Prix.  They thought the fin would keep the cars down on the track but after 2 up in the air incidents this week, the piece was removed from the cars, even though this has nothing to do with why the cars are getting airborne.  Seems the cars get airborne when they are going backwards on the track and the air hitting the large Butt Bumpers behind the rear wheels create a huge amount of lift - especially on the Chevys, which have larger Butt Bumpers that create huge lift when the car gets backwards.

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05/15/15
pwc

Record Payouts Set for Pirelli World Challenge Detroit Grand Prix Weekend Races
WC Vision announced today drivers who podium as part of the Sunday CBS Sports Network live broadcasted Pirelli World Challenge Cadillac V Series Challenge race will receive record series payouts. GT and GTA competitors will race Rounds 10 and 11 at the 13-turn, 2.3-mile temporary street circuit on Belle Isle, part of the Detroit Grand Prix weekend, Friday, May 29 to Sunday, May 31.
 
On Sunday, a race win in GT will net $20,000, while a second brings $15,000, and a third $10,000. In GTA, race winners will receive $10,000 while a second place finish nets $7,500, and a third $5,000.

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05/15/15
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Friday
  • Ecclestone orchestrating some major changes in F1
    Ecclestone orchestrating some major changes in F1
    FIA to outline F1 Strategy Group results on Friday
  • Audi foray discussed by Strategy Group
  • Ecclestone 'will be replaced' - Stewart
  • F1 should green-light new 'tire war' - Coulthard
  • 2015 Mexico race already sold out
  • Kvyat calm as pressure builds
  • Ferrari's $164M Payout For '14 Season Leads All Formula 1 Teams

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