Championship Battle Heats Up in USF2000 Competition The Cooper Tires Presents the USF2000 National Championship Powered by Mazda heads to the famed Milwaukee Mile this week for Round 6 of what is proving to be a hotly contested title chase. The full Mazda Road to Indy contingent will be on hand to do battle on the 1.0-mile oval in support of the IZOD IndyCar Series’ Milwaukee 225 with USF2000, Star Mazda and Firestone Indy Lights all holding races on Sunday as a precursor to the headline event.
USF2000 is coming off its first oval event of the season – the traditional “Night Before the 500” at Lucas Oil Raceway on May 28 – which saw the year’s first repeat winner as 18-year-old Finnish driver Petri Suvanto garnered top honors in his oval debut aboard the #3 Viseko entry for Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing. Suvanto, whose worst finish this season was third in Round 2 at Sebring, now holds a 16-point advantage in the championship standings.
F1/NASCAR car swap was cool, but...... A reader writes, Dear Ar1.com, As cool as the car swap (between Stewart and Hamilton) was to see and watch, and trust me, as a fan I enjoyed this car swap immensely, can you imagine how cool it would be to have someone like Dario or Dixon or...or...(insert just about any of the good IndyCar drivers) doing something similar at somewhere like Indy or Road America.
Indy would probably make more sense as the F-1 guys have a "book" on set ups and such and it is a place where the drivers could try one another's cars on a road course....
Dreaming of course but just image how cool that could be.... Fred Larimer
Dear Fred, Recall that the first car swap was between Jeff Gordon (NASCAR) and Juan Pablo Montoya (F1 Williams) at Indy years ago just as you suggest. At least it was dry that day so the drivers could get it on. Mark C.
ALMS offering on of a kind $500K giveaway to Petit LeMans Series offers once-in-a-lifetime Petit Le Mans experience for $500K
For those who think their dad has everything or is difficult to shop for, the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n has created the Ultimate Father’s Day package. The extravagant package not only features world-class travel, accommodations and dining, but offers exclusive experiences only available through this unique offering. With a price tag set at $500,000, the ALMS Ultimate Father’s Day getaway is most certainly for those with discerning taste.
Is IndyCar Racing in Las Vegas? A reader writes, Dear AR1, Indy Car is coming to Las Vegas for the season finale correct? Therefore you would expect to see some hype, awareness, marketing, etc. I can tell you that I was in Vegas Saturday and Sunday in a restaurant/bar and casino, both well name venues.
On Saturday night at the first stop, restaurant and brewery, there were several TV’s on in the bar area with everything from baseball to soccer. No Indy car in sight. I asked our waitress if they would change one TV to the Indy Car race on Versus. She was bewildered but asked the bar tender. After channel surfing, they finally found the race.
We watched the first race to conclusion with no one else in the bar paying the slightest attention to the race. Soccer and NCAA baseball captured the crowd. We then left for one of the major casino properties hoping to catch race # 2 on TV before our concert.
NASCAR Drivers Complete Test Session at Infineon Raceway NASCAR Sprint Cup Series drivers David Reutimann, David Ragan, Andy Lally and Michael McDowell, as well as West Series driver and Hayward native Jessica Brunelli, completed a one-day test session at Infineon Raceway on Tuesday in preparation for the Toyota/Save Mart 350, June 24-26.
Reutimann (No. 00 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota) completed approximately 50 laps around the 10-turn, 1.99-mile road course. Reutimann will compete in his fourth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event at Infineon Raceway next weekend. He posted a best finish of 20th in 2010.
“I’m not all that good at the road courses, so I’m trying to refine my skills here,” said Reutimann. “A lot of guys have been racing out here for years and have this place memorized, so this gives me a better idea of where I’m going on this tough track.”
The wait and debate are over. Three-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Darrell Waltrip, now an analyst for NASCAR on FOX and SPEED, was voted into the third class of the NASCAR Hall of Fame today.
Below, Waltrip’s colleagues offer their thoughts on the vote and his place in NASCAR history:
“DW's driving resume speaks for itself but his influence included the power of his personality and his understanding of the media, particularly television. He appealed to an audience well beyond the traditional stock car fan and that helped expand the sport.” --Dave Despain, host of Wind Tunnel on SPEED
ALMS race at Lime Rock no walk in park this year The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n returns from its summer vacation at Lime Rock Park with the American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix. This year’s race marks the ALMS’ eighth consecutive season of racing in New England at one of North America’s most well-known and historic venues.
A field of 32 cars is entered for the race, which would be a record grid for an ALMS event at Lime Rock. The field will use the 1.5-mile, eight-turn layout that features the optional chicane at the Uphill (Turn 5) and the classic West Bend – forgoing a chicane and going straight to the Downhill.
Childress Statement on 2012 Inductees to NASCAR Hall of Fame The following is a statement by Richard Childress, president and CEO of Richard Childress Racing, regarding the announcement of the 2012 inductees to the NASCAR Hall of Fame:
"Congratulations to Glen Wood, Cale Yarborough, Dale Inman, Richie Evans and Darrell Waltrip -- the 2012 inductees into the NASCAR Hall of Fame. Each new member played a significant role in establishing the strong and successful foundation that NASCAR enjoys today. It was an honor for me to be nominated with them and I look forward to being at the Hall next January for their induction."
Brian Keselowski switches to Chevy; has sponsor for MIS K-Automotive Motorsports announced that Brian Keselowski will be back on the track in the #92 Chevy, at Michigan International Speedway. Keselowski said in a recent statement: "Making the decision to leave Dodge and go with another manufacturer was a hard decision to make but as an owner I need to think of what is best for the team & the company and it's what I need to do to try and make races to keep racing and pay the bills, so that is why I've made the switch.
While I am not happy about parting ways with Dodge, I am looking forward to our new venture with Chevy. Maybe in the future I'll be able to work with Dodge again but for right now, Chevy is the way we've chosen to go & I'm hopeful this will benefit all involved". K-Automotive Motorsports also announced the return of Melling Engine Parts as a sponsor for Keselowski's #92 Chevy at Michigan. Mark Melling CEO of Melling Engine Parts has agreed to a one race sponsorship of the K-Automotive Chevrolet at MIS."
With probation over, fireworks may fly at MIS this weekend! Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch are off of probation Wednesday just in time for the Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips 400 at Michigan International Speedway, a track that has had its share of driver confrontations.
The probation and fines came as a result of a scrape May 7 in Darlington. On pit road after the race, Harvick stopped his Chevrolet in front of Busch's car, exited and headed towards Busch. After Harvick took a swing at his window, Busch drove off to the pits, knocking Harvick's car aside in the process.
After being warned by NASCAR early in the race at Pocono, Busch and Harvick still don’t seem like they’re ready to get along.
Lotus announces GE as major partner Lotus has announced General Electric as a new sponsor and technology partner.
GE branding will appear on the cars from the British Grand Prix onwards and, according to a press release, the new deal will provide the team "with leading edge technological, R&D and manufacturing resources that will help accelerate the team's progress, on and off track."
Team principal Tony Fernandes explained the deal in more depth.
Robert Kubica photographed for the first time since his accident by FAKT.pl
Polish website FAKT.pl have published the first pictures of Renault F1 driver Robert Kubica, since his horror rally crash, walking with a crutch and his strapped up arm showing a massive scar just below the inner elbow area.
TNT RaceBuddy on NASCAR.com gets 1.1 million streams TNT RaceBuddy on NASCAR.COM debuted its newly-enhanced online companion during last Sunday’s TNT telecast of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Pocono Raceway with single-day record-setting traffic of 1.1 million streams, besting last season’s stream total by 187% (375,000 in 2010) and RaceBuddy’s previous single-day best 712,000 streams (Pocono, June 8, 2008).
Additional TNT RaceBuddy on NASCAR.COM highlights from Sunday include:
RaceBuddy Player Page Views +24%, (238,000 vs. 192,000 in 2010)
Total RaceBuddy Visits +52%, (152,000 vs. 100,000 in 2010)
RaceBuddy Unique Users +45%, (120,000 vs. 82,000 in 2010)
7.2 million total minutes streamed
TNT RaceBuddy on NASCAR.COM was fully-enhanced this season, allowing fans to choose from a total of 10 camera views, twice as many as last year, including two Mosaics and eight individual camera angles with four In-Car Driver Cams, two Battle Cams highlighting head-to-head competition between drivers, a Backstretch Cam and a Pit Road Cam. The two Mosaic Views allow fans to view four streams at once. The unique race companion also continues to offer DVR Functionality, an Enhanced LIVE Leaderboard and RaceView’s position tracker.
NCWTS Scores Sixth Consecutive Ratings Increase SPEED coverage of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race from Texas scored an average Household Rating of .74, up 9 percent from last year’s race on the corresponding weekend (.68, Michigan) according to Nielsen Media Research. Compared to last year’s Texas race, this year’s event was up 3 percent (.74 vs. 72). Friday night’s race, won by former champion Ron Hornaday Jr., peaked at .82.
It marks the sixth consecutive NCWTS race to score a year-to-year ratings increase (Kansas +28%, Martinsville +4%, Nashville +18%, Dover +26%, and Charlotte +42%). To date, live and exclusive coverage of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series on SPEED is pacing up 7 percent year-to-year.
Next up for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series on SPEED – July 7 from Kentucky Speedway. NCWTS Setup with Krista Voda begins at 7:30 p.m. ET and race coverage begins at 8 p.m. ET.
Kyle Busch Leads in NASCAR TV Exposure Even before his most recent dustup, Kyle Busch had been the center of attention during this year’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series broadcasts. Interviewed longer and mentioned more frequently than any other driver on the circuit during the first 12 event telecasts of 2011, Busch parlayed the spotlight into $28.4 million of exposure value for his sponsors—some $6.5 million more than the next most sponsor-potent driver, Dale Earnhardt Jr.
According to research conducted by Joyce Julius & Associates, Inc. -- which has monitored every NASCAR race telecast over the last 27 seasons -- Busch’s sponsors, with logos appearing on his car, uniform and pit crew, etc., were monitored for eight hours, 30 minutes, 39 seconds (8:30:39) during live and replayed coverage of NASCAR’s Daytona 500 through last month’s Coca-Cola 600. Additionally, Busch and the FOX TV crew verbally mentioned his sponsors on 95 occasions.
Ferrari extends Marlboro deal until 2015 (GMM) Formula one team Ferrari on Tuesday announced it has extended its agreement with title sponsor Philip Morris until the end of 2015.
The rumors about the extension were first heard in January at Marlboro's 'Wrooom' media event in the Italian Dolomites.
Philip Morris has remained in F1 long after the sport's total ban on cigarette advertising.
Ferrari's so-called 'barcode' logo and livery was controversial in 2010, leading to the launch of a new red and white logo for this year, which was incorporated into the design of the 2011 car's livery.
"We see no obstacles to an extension," a Philip Morris International spokesman said in January.
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Signs Pippa Mann to Three-Race Indy Car Program
Continuing efforts to prepare for a full-time Indy Car Series effort in 2012, Rahal Letterman Lanigan today announced that it would partner with promising Indy Lights driver and 2011 Indianapolis 500 rookie Pippa Mann for three Indy Car events later this year.
Mann, who finished 20th in becoming the first British female to ever start in the Indy 500, will drive the RLL #30 Dallara/Honda/Firestone in events at Loudon, Kentucky and Las Vegas. The 27-year-old will have a pair of testing opportunities with the team as part of the program, the first of which will take place at Loudon’s New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 5.
Spygate architect, now Williams Chief Engineer, Mike Coughlan
How do you feel about joining AT&T Williams? I am thrilled to be at AT&T Williams. I have always admired Williams, it is such a renowned name in motorsport so I am excited to work with the team to try and recapture their past glory. This would have been great at any point in my career because Williams is such an iconic team, but it is made even more special because I have been given the chance to return to Formula One.
You come to the team having not worked in Formula One since 2007, what have you been doing since then? I took the opportunity to help develop the Ocelot light protected patrol vehicle, designed to protect British forces in transit. I then moved back into racing with Michael Waltrip Racing in NASCAR. I was expecting to be with Waltrip for the next stage of my career, and they are a super team, but unfortunately it proved impossible to work on one side of the Atlantic with my family living on the other. So, the opportunity at Williams also brings my family together again, which is obviously important.
Fans appeared to like the 2-race IndyCar format. Expect to see more of it
VERSUS' coverage of the Firestone Twin 275s from Texas Motor Speedway had a 12 percent increase in overnight ratings from a year ago, proving the two race format was popular with fans.
According to data from Nielsen Media Research, the prime-time telecast on June 10 produced an overnight rating 0.38 for the twin 114-lap races won by Dario Franchitti and Will Power. Of course that was a 'cable' TV rating. When compared to a national TV rating the 0.38 is equivalent to a 0.32.
As of September 1, 2010, there are an estimated 115.9 million television households in the United States. A single national ratings point represents one percent of the total number, or 1,159,000 households for the 2010–11 season.
Cable penetration (wired and unwired) currently stands at nearly 85% of TV households, so a 0.38 Rating on cable is equivalent to about a 0.32 national TV rating.
MoveThatBlock.com to Sponsor race at New Hampshire New Hampshire Motor Speedway and MoveThatBlock.com announced today that the innovative, cutting edge website will be the title sponsor for the return of the IZOD IndyCar Series on Sunday, Aug. 14.
Founded in 2010 by Todd Drowlette and Patrick Gray, MoveThatBlock.com offers a one-stop-shop for jobs, dating, commercial real estate, residential real estate, apartments, home rentals and vacation rentals. There custom features are simple to use and allow easy searching and posting in an uncluttered environment.
"We are ecstatic to have such a modern company like MoveThatBlock.com sponsor our IZOD IndyCar Series race," said Jerry Gappens, executive vice president and general manager of the speedway. "INDYCAR continues to be one of the most innovative forms of motorsports. It is fitting that a technologically savvy brand such as MoveThatBlock.com signed on for this exciting opportunity."
Team Lotus Confirms Wind Tunnel Deal with Williams F1
Lotus, Virgin and Williams do battle in Melbourne earlier this year
Team Lotus has confirmed today that it is expanding its wind tunnel operations having confirmed a deal with Williams F1 to use one of the Grove based team’s two wind tunnels from September 2011. Team Lotus will now be running a two tunnel program, with the Aerolab facility in Italy working in conjunction with the Williams F1 site in the UK while work continues on the team’s own wind tunnel at Hingham. When that facility is operational all activity will be transferred to the team’s own site.
Tony Fernandes, Team Lotus Team Principal: “There are a number of reasons why I am delighted that we have signed this deal. From a practical perspective there are the obvious benefits of increasing our wind tunnel activity and using a state of the art facility in the UK, and I am sure that will immediately help Marianne Hinson (Head of Aerodynamics and CFD) and her team to work even more effectively in one of the key areas of the ongoing development of our team. The other side of the agreement is that I owe a great deal of thanks to Frank Williams, Patrick Head and Adam Parr as they were the first people I ever worked with in Formula 1. AirAsia was a proud sponsor of their team and Frank, Patrick and Adam played key roles in introducing me to the Formula 1 world, so I am very pleased that we are able to keep working together as Team Lotus continues to establish itself as a serious force in Formula 1.”
Nielsen leaves in Renault/Genii restructure Renault sporting director Steve Nielsen is to part company with the team after more than 10 years.
Renault/Genii recently employed an outside agent, John Wickham, formerly the technical and operations manager of A1GP, to conduct an efficiency study into the team.
Wickham, who managed the Spirit-Honda F2 team in the eighties and brought the engine manufacturer into F1 in 1983 before Honda did its deal with Williams, was in the Barcelona paddock at the Spanish GP.
Neilsen, who is known to have reservations about the direction the team is headed under Genii management, resigned during the Barcelona weekend but it is believed to be under contract to the team until the end of the year.
No. 18 fails inspection at PoconoUPDATE #3 NASCAR officials said the front left was too low on the Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. Crew chief Dave Rogers said the car was 1/16th of an inch outside the tolerances already allowed by the governing body. Because the car passed pre-race inspection Rogers speculated the violation was the result of a broken part. Because NASCAR doesn't typically differentiate whether the violation was intentional or unintentional, Busch faces a potential fine, points deduction or both. He currently is fifth in points, 25 behind leader Carl Edwards who lost his big lead after an engine failure left him 37th at the 2.5-mile track. Rogers said it was a "huge surprise'' when NASCAR informed him the car failed and would be taken to the Research and Development Center in Concord, N.C., for further evaluation. "It's disappointing," Rogers said. "I can't tell you a whole lot right now. We sit on bump stops in these race cars. Your springs often don't damage. We were struggling all weekend and we went back to what we raced last spring when we finished second. We put the same package in -- same front shocks, same front springs. We went through tech just fine last year, but obviously everything has a year on it and everything is mileaged out. I don't have any excuses for you. It's the last thing I expected after the race." Rogers said there was a lot of damage on the left front fender, apparently from bottoming out on the rough Pocono surface. He said Busch also got into the fence on the right side. "There is plenty of body damage, but nothing that I could look at and say, 'Hey, NASCAR, here's a problem,'" Rogers said. "I would just be trying to make excuses if I tried to justify it." ESPN.com
At one of the most thrilling and dramatic 24-hour races in Le Mans history Audi-ultra-lightweight technology has prevailed. At the fascinating thriller which kept 250,000 spectators at the race track and millions in front of their TV sets watching in awe Marcel Fässler (Switzerland), André Lotterer (Germany) and Benoît Treluyer (France) in the innovative Audi R18 TDI clinched the tenth Le Mans victory in total for the brand with the four rings.
The drama at the 79th edition of the world’s most famous endurance could hardly be surpassed. After Audi had lost two of its Audi R18 TDI cars as early as in the first third of the race due to accidents all hopes were pinned on car number "2” that had secured the pole position in qualifying for Audi. For 16 hours Fässler, Lotterer and Treluyer were on their own in the battle against three factory-fielded Peugeot cars that left no stone unturned to keep Audi from taking victory.
Harvick vs. Busch resurfaces Kevin Harvick made it clear Sunday at Pocono Raceway that his feud with #18-Kyle Busch isn't over. The Richard Childress Racing driver forced Busch down the track early in the Sprint Cup race when the two were fighting for position in the last event of their four-race probation, handed down by NASCAR after their pit road incident at Darlington. It was a continuation of the feud between the drivers, as well as the one with Harvick's team owner, Richard Childress, who put Busch in a headlock and punched him in the Truck Series garage after last weekend's truck race at Kansas. The incident came after Busch made contact with RCR driver Joey Coulter on the cool-down lap. "He knows he's got one coming," Harvick said after finishing fifth at Pocono on Sunday, two spots behind Busch. "I just wanted him to think about it." NASCAR warned the two drivers to just race, and the battle seemed to settle down after that. "It seemed like he was trying to make it awfully difficult on me," Busch said. "There were a couple of times I had to back off and wait (before passing)." Busch said what Harvick did simply showed his character. "It's not my fight," Busch said. "He's trying to turn it into one." ESPN.com
Dario Franchitti needed some Huggies on Saturday. Crying because he had to start near the back in Race 2 is no different than having bad luck pitting and then the caution flag falls at the wrong time and you end up near the back.
Reigning IndyCar champion Dario Franchitti is fuming at what he says what as unfair system at the Firestone Twin 275s in Texas.
The controversy over the bizarre qualifying format marred Australian Will Power's maiden IndyCar win on an oval-course, but the Australian displayed exemplary sportsmanship in the post-race interview as he expressed solidarity with his title rival.
While the grid for the first of the two races was determined by a traditional qualifying session, the second was determined by a random pot-luck draw.
That draw saw Will Power start third for the race in which he claimed his maiden oval-course win, while title rival Dario Franchitti started 28th, and fellow rival Scott Dixon started 18th.
Round six of the Pacific F2000 Series Presented by Corsa Car Care at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana began much as the day before with overcast skies and cool temperatures. It soon warmed up as the cars hit the track for qualifying and a fierce battle raged between Ira Fierberg, Barry I. Goldstein, CPA, Sparco, DFR Van Diemen and Conner Ford, Les Schwab Tire Center, Western Nevada Supply, Keniston, JF Excavating & Grading, PR1 Van Diemen, that was finally settled on the last lap of qualifying with Conner taking his fifth pole of the year by a mere 0.083 of a second with a 1m39.612s lap.
Kyle Kuntze, Oktane Visual, Acceleration Kart Racing, Wiener Racing, DRF Van Diemen continued his fine form taking third on the grid followed by David Cheng, PR1 Van Diemen, Bob Negron, Feng Shui Me Baby.com, Van Diemen, Peter Hastrup, Western Building Materials, DFR Van Diemen, Peter Thomas, Refrigeration Control Co., Hytech Exhaust, Church Automotive Testing, PR1 Van Diemen and Peter West, Frank Monise Motors, DFR Van Diemen.
Hamilton's boneheaded moves does him in againUPDATE #2
Lewis Hamilton - his aggressive moves are becoming a detriment to the sport, and to himself
(GMM) Lewis Hamilton "goes a bit too far", is "clumsy" or "completely mad", depending on who you listened to after the Canadian grand prix.
After several run-ins with the stewards this year, the McLaren driver was involved in more incidents in Montreal, including one that moved his teammate Jenson Button to exclaim on the radio: "What is he doing?"
The pair and boss Martin Whitmarsh later played down the incident and the stewards took no action after an investigation, but Mark Webber hit out at Hamilton's earlier "clumsy" maneuver that tipped him into a spin.
"I think Lewis thought the checkered flag was in turn three," said the Australian dryly.
Corvette reigns at LeMans again Corvette Racing returned to the top step at Le Mans on Sunday following a fantastic battle in GTE Pro for all 24 hours of the world’s greatest race. Olivier Beretta won for the sixth time at the Le Mans 24 Hours, Antonio Garcia won for the third time, and Tommy Milner took his first career victory at Le Mans in their Corvette C6.R.
The trio were a handful of drivers from the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n to take honors in the 79th running of Le Mans.
Button escapes post-race penalty Jenson Button has been confirmed as the victor of this year's Canadian Grand Prix, with stewards opting not the penalize the McLaren driver after he tapped Ferrari's Fernando Alonso out of the race at the Turn 3/4 Chicane. Having looked at various video evidence the panel, including two-time Formula 1 Champion Emerson Fittipaldi, felt that no further action was necessary and allowed Button to keep his win.
Vettel: I was too conservative Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel has admitted that he was ‘too conservative’ after the final Safety Car period at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Sunday, ultimately losing his lead to McLaren rival Jenson Button when he ran wide at the Turn 6/7 chicane on the final lap of the race. Despite the error, Vettel still holds onto a comfortable advantage in the Drivers’ Championship, sitting 60 points ahead of Button who is now in second place.
"Of course I’m disappointed, it was a very difficult race from start to finish and we led every single lap except the last one," Vettel said. "I think I was probably too conservative when I was in the lead after the last Safety Car, and I didn’t open the gap enough.
Karthikeyan hit with post-race penalty Narain Karthikeyan has been demoted from 14th to 17th at the Canadian Grand Prix after he was judged to have gained an advantage by skipping the final chicane towards the end of the race.
Karthikeyan headed a train of cars across the line in Sunday's hectic race and finished 14th on the road. However, after reviewing video evidence, the stewards handed him a 20-second post-race penalty in lieu of a drive-through for skipping the chicane at turns 13 and 14.
Vettel extends point lead despite last-lap loss to Button (GMM) Sebastian Vettel still extended his lead in the 2011 world championship despite losing the marathon Canadian grand prix on the very last lap.
"I led every lap until part of the last one," said the disappointed Red Bull driver, who ran off the dry racing line to let McLaren's Jenson Button past mere corners from the checkered flag.
"It's not the sweetest feeling," admitted the German, despite pulling out his lead - now over Button - from 58 to 60 points.
It was a marathon day at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, following an excruciatingly long red flag delay due to torrential rain.
Rain may throw a wrench in 5-Hour Energy 500 race Pocono Raceway officials said they're prepared if rain dampens today's 5-Hour Energy 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race.
Drivers cannot race in any type of moisture, but if the rain stops before the race, officials have ways of drying out the track, said Pocono Raceway Vice President Bob Pleban. The process involves driving 10 trucks mounted with jet packs around the 2.5 mile track.
If rain continues to the start of the 1 p.m. race, the event can be postponed up until 5 p.m., or will be moved to the next clear day.
The start of the 2011 24 Hours of LeMans. A crowd the Daytona Rolex 24 can only fantasize about
Phenomenal success for the 2011 running of the 24 hours : 249,500 spectators attended the race on Saturday, June 11th, and Sunday, June 12th, an increase of 5% over 2010 when 238,150 enthusiasts were there. A fantastic success story.
Compare that to Grand-Am's big race, the Rolex 24 at Daytona, where you could shoot a canon into the grandstands and never hit a single soul.
There should be a single sports car series in the USA - ALMS, which has close ties to LeMans. Instead the France family had to fracture the sport and create the Grand-Am series so that sports car racing in the USA can never reach it's full potential. And why, because the France family wants control. Sure, this is America and if they want to run their own series they can, but imagine how strong sports car racing could be if they would give up some of their control and join forces with ALMS.
But instead we have two weakened series, just like CART and the IRL had that almost destroyed the sport. The rumor Mongols will tell you the only reason Grand-Am exists is so the France family can ensure ALMS never gets too big, taking away from the monopoly they are trying to create with NASCAR, their bread and butter.
But that's big business and perfectly legal. It's just too bad for racing in America that it has to be that way.
Video: 2012 Corvette ZR1 Takes on Nurburgring The Chevrolet Corvette returns to the famed German track - the Nurburgring - to test the 2012 ZR1 model. This year's test run eclipses the time set in 2008 by more than six seconds.
With 4 hours to go in the grueling 24 Hours of LeMans Benoit Treluyer still has the pole sitting Audi less than a minute ahead of the Peugeot of Sebastien Bourdais. However, the #2 Audi had what looked like normal pit stop under the safety car but as it pulled there was a burst of smoke, possibly oil smoke from the rear. Then when the car was waiting at the pit lane exit a close up TV shot showed the back of the car smoking even more. To make matters worse sprinkles of rain are reported over the circuit.
Treluyer pulled out a lead of just over a minute before making a routine fuel stop 40 minutes into the hour. Fresh tires were wheeled out but not fitted, and Treluyer emerged from the pit just behind Bourdais - almost a lap ahead. But he could not lap him. Bourdais opened the gap from 1.5s to 5.9s before diving into the pits himself without taking on new tires.
Video: Another big Audi crash at LeMansUPDATE #2 Audi later confirmed that Rockenfeller would be kept in overnight for observation but that he was okay.
06/11/11 After 7.5 hours, the number 1 Audi with the winners of last year, Mike Rockenfeller, Timo Bernhard and Romain Dumas crashed heavily.
On the straight between Mulsanne and Indianapolis Rockefeller came together with the No. 71AF Corse Ferrari, at that time driven by Rob Kauffman. The Ferrari driver, who was on the left side of the track, went off his line and then hit the Audi, which then shot into the left guardrail and ended up some 200 meters further on the right hand side. Because of the gigantic impact the car disintegrated in many pieces.
According to information from Radio Le Mans reporter Paul Thruswell, who spoke to Audi Motorsport Dr.Wolfgang Ullrich, Rockefeller got himself out of the car.
Dawn Breaks in chaos at Le Mans It was a chilly night with temperatures dropping as low as 5.5C but the cold air suits the engines and the leading #2 Audi is doing 3:29.820 sec just 0.149 secs faster than the lead Peugeot. The lead swapping with the pit stops. Even so the pendulum may just be swinging the way of Peugeot.
There have been many retirements during the night and just eight LM P1 cars are still running. It was 06:06hrs that started a dangerous period because suddenly we lost #58 Luxury Racing Ferrari 458 Italia crashed, #59 Luxury Racing Ferrari 458 Italia stopped in the Porsche Curves and then #48 Team Oreca Matmut crashed when running 2nd in LM P2. This brought out the safety car for the fourth time. Finally by 06:32hrs racing began again .
As the green flag was waved the #61 AF Corse Ferrari went off backwards into the wall at Porsche Curves. This is carnage!
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