IndyCar drivers lobby for Elkhart Lake WEST ALLIS, Wis. — If IndyCar drivers had a vote when it came to finding a track to replace the series’ recently canceled race in China, plenty of them would be happy to head back to Wisconsin later this year.
Several drivers in town for Saturday’s race at the Milwaukee Mile mentioned Road America in Elkhart Lake as a potential replacement venue for the China race, which was canceled earlier this week.
“Elkhart,” Marco Andretti said. “Elkhart Lake, for sure.”
Track records shattered in NASCAR practice at MISUPDATE If today’s NASCAR Sprint Cup practice session was any indication of things to come, don’t blink or you will certainly miss the fastest weekend in Michigan International Speedway history.
MIS repaved its race track in the fall of 2011 and the results have been met with approval from the drivers. And they can go really fast on the surface.
All 43 drivers who practiced on Thursday posted speeds faster than the track record of 194.232 mph set by Ryan Newman in 2005.
No NASCAR Sprint Cup driver has exceeded 200 mph in qualifying since 1987 when Bill Elliott established the record of 212.809 in April of ’87.
What drivers are saying ahead of Milwaukee weekend
DARIO FRANCHITTI: “With all the problems, it looked like we weren’t going to be coming back to Milwaukee. But we’re back here because of what the IndyCar Series and Michael Andretti and his team did to put this together. It’s great to be back at Milwaukee and this track is one we all love. There’s so much history. In order to get Indy car racing back to where it needs to be, we need to be at these places. There are so many things going on for the fans and I think Michael and his team have done a good job and it should be a good event.” (About missing the test here in May): “I would have loved to test here. At first, when they said it was because of the (Indy 500 winner’s) media stuff, I said, “Let’s postpone it.” But then the team explained it properly and said if you want to celebrate with the guys at the banquet in Indy, then you can’t test at Milwaukee. It was such a big thing to win Indy and we wanted celebrate together. It’s a bit of a disadvantage but luckily, Scott, Graham and Charlie were here and logged laps. So we can steal their information.”
DHL Helps Bring Back IndyCar Racing to Milwaukee Mile Even DHL has partnered with Andretti Sports Marketing and signed on to "deliver" a great race experience to IndyCar fans this Father's Day weekend at the historic Milwaukee Mile as the Official Express and Logistics Provider of the 2012 Milwaukee IndyFest. Complementing its partnership with Andretti Autosport, DHL is a major sponsor of the historic Milwaukee Mile event, a festival that features two days of exciting race action from the IZOD IndyCar Series and Firestone Indy Lights as well as concerts, family activities and more.
As the Official Express and Logistics Provider of the Milwaukee IndyFest, DHL has the prestigious honor of delivering the race trophies to the "DHL Victory Circle" on Saturday and presenting the trophy to the race winner. In addition to delivering the trophies, DHL will also deliver unique opportunities to two of its customers attending the race – giving one the opportunity to experience a two-seater ride in an IndyCar and the other the opportunity to ride in the Pace Car at the start of the race.
Inside Audi's R18 e-tron quattro & Toyota's TS030 Hybrid Go behind the scenes with Audi Sport drivers Allen McNish and Tom Kristensen, plus Toyota Motorsport GmbH driver Alexander Wurz before the 24 Hours of Le Mans for an inside look at the super-fast hybrid race cars they are piloting. Can a hybrid really win at Le Mans? Find out why all indications point to yes as the engineers and technical directors also weigh in.
Laine quickest on day one of Valencia test Following the first two rounds of the 2012 GP3 Series, the cars returned to action, this time for a two day mid-season test at Valencia. It was Finland’s Matias Laine who was quickest in the morning session with a time of 1:26.610 squeezing out Daniel Abt’s Lotus GP with Nico Muller quickest in the afternoon.
There was a new face to the driving line-up with Samin Gomez from Venezuela testing for Jenzer Motorsport and making her debut in a GP3 car, and thus making it four female drivers competing in the test! Former GP3 driver Muller was welcomed back as he got behind the wheel of the Trident Racing car for testing purposes. Alex Brundle misses this the two day session in Valencia due to Le Mans duty.
Peter Sauber: “Performance fell short of our capability.” Last Sunday in Canada, Sergio Perez captured the second podium place of the season for the Sauber F1 Team. Team Principal Peter Sauber talks about this extraordinary race, an exciting season and the targets for the forthcoming grands prix.
When did you realize on Sunday that a podium place was within grasp?
Peter Sauber: “Not until late on in the race. Sergio had started from 15th on the grid, so you wouldn’t normally be contemplating a podium place – you’d be happy just to get into the points. But once the front-runners began to develop problems with their tires towards the end of the race, it became clear that something very special could be unfolding. Unlike the other drivers, Sergio was not affected by these tire problems and was able to continue his all-out offensive right to the end. He drove an extraordinary race.”
ACO announces 2014 LMP1 Regulations Today, Thursday 14th June 2012, the Automobile Club de l’Ouest held its annual press conference before the 80th Le Mans 24 Hours, which will take place on 16-17 June. The highlight of this conference was the presentation of the revolutionary 2014 regulations (PDF) to meet the challenges represented by the transition to other forms of energy and sustainable development.
In his introduction, Pierre Fillon, the eighth President of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest elected on 31st May 2012 to take up the reins from Jean-Claude Plassart, insisted on the fact that his presidency would continue the work of his predecessors, and that the club and its actions were resolutely turned towards the 21st century.
Firestone tire specs for Milwaukee Race Distance: 228.375 miles/367.425 kilometers (225 laps on the 1.015-mile/1.633-kilometer oval).
Firestone Firehawk Race Tires Supplied: - 1,016 total tires are available. This is an all-new specification that is based on the tire used at Milwaukee in 2011. The 2012 spec has new compounds on both the left and right side, which are slightly "softer" than the 2011 compounds in anticipation of the needs of the Dallara DW12. The 2012 spec was previously used by teams for a test here on Tuesday, May 29.
NASCAR splitting its Media Group after merging it Sports Business Journal reports that five years after bringing all its media operations under one roof, NASCAR is recasting the NASCAR Medi Group into four independent departments - NASCAR Broadcast, NASCAR Productions, NASCAR Digital and NASCAR Entertainment.
VW may pay $750 million more for Porsche Volkswagen Group may pay 600 million euros ($750 million) more than originally planned for the remaining 50.1 of Porsche's automotive business that it currently does not own, the Financial Times Deutschland reported, citing finance and company sources.
VW will likely pay 4.5 billion euros for the stake, instead of the 3.9 billion euros that was agreed on earlier between the two companies, the German daily newspaper reported.
The higher price is due to the achievement of cost reductions between the two companies earlier than planned, the FTD said.
Branson's Virgin Group Joins TrueCar Racing TrueCar Racing has announced today that Virgin Group, a leading global brand synonymous with innovation, entertainment, lifestyle and adventure and one of the world's most recognized brands, is joining as an affiliate sponsor of TrueCar Racing, the world's first all-female racing team and "Women Empowered" initiative, for the rest of the IndyCar season and 2012 Women Empowered racing calendar. IndyCar is one of the premier motor sports leagues watched worldwide. Financial terms of the deal are undisclosed.
"We are thrilled to have the Virgin Group team with TrueCar Racing to help empower women in racing and to help strengthen and broaden the message that women racers can statistically win in a sport dominated by men with the right resources and support," said Scott Painter, Founder and CEO of TrueCar, Inc. "We are committed to providing our team with the tools they need to win now and in the future."
Nissan DeltaWing shows Le Mans pace The Nissan DeltaWing showed impressive pace in qualifying for the 80th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans in France tonight however its assault on the timesheet was unfortunately “extinguished” early.
With German Michael Krumm at the wheel, the Nissan DeltaWing had already improved on its earlier practice session time to stop the clocks at 3 minutes, 42.612 seconds. Krumm was confident of breaking into the “30s” until the car’s on-board fire extinguisher went off after striking a curb at Tertre Rouge – simultaneously shutting down the car’s electrical system.
The Nissan DeltaWing was brought back to parc ferme near the pits but race officials did not permit the car to be returned to the pit lane where the crew could have cleaned the car and returned it to track action.
LeMans: Lotterer puts No. 1 Audi on provisional pole
The first day’s practice and qualifying sessions are now complete and there has been a feast of racing, tension and excitement for all to enjoy. There has been close and competitive action across all four classes of racing, and 54 of the 56 cars have taken to the track.
Audi continue to hold the upper hand at the moment, but the inter-team competition has been intense. 2011 race winner Andre Lotterer, in the No.1 Audi R18 e-tron quattro secured provisional pole position in the final minute of the two-hour qualifying session, displacing the marque’s most successful driver at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, eight-time winner Tom Kristensen, in the No. 2 car. The Dane had been earlier closely challenged by both his team mates and the No.7 Toyota TS 030 Hybrid but it was Romain Dumas in the No.3 Audi R18 ultra which finally claimed third place. There is a scant two tenths of a second separating the top three.
Six IndyCar drivers, including top two in points, face grid penalties There's additional intrigue lined up for the Milwaukee IndyFest Presented by XYQ this weekend as Will Power and Scott Dixon -- 1-2 in the IZOD IndyCar Series championship standings -- will incur 10-grid spot penalties for unapproved engine changes.
Four others in the 25-car field will face the same penalty, including Firestone 550 winner Justin Wilson.
Power, who has won three races this season, takes a 36-point lead over Dixon into the 225-lap race June 16 (1 p.m. ET on ABC) at the Milwaukee Mile. James Hinchcliffe of Andretti Autosport is third (48 points out) and Helio Castroneves is 53 points arrears of his Team Penske teammate.
MotoGP not definite for Austin yet Motorcycling legend Kevin Schwantz said he would still like to have a MotoGP race run at Circuit of the Americas, and that negotiations no longer would have to go through promoter Tavo Hellmund.
But Schwantz also said he's still waiting to hear from officials with the circuit, which is still under construction and slated to host its inaugural Formula One grand prix in November.
In response to a query, Schwantz emailed the American-Statesman: "Several weeks ago, Tavo was nice enough to step aside and asked COTA to talk directly with me about a MotoGP contract for them. To date, COTA has not had any meaningful discussions with me regarding MotoGP at COTA.
IndyCar promoter cancels China race The IndyCar race in China on Aug. 19 was officially cancelled Wednesday, and series CEO Randy Bernard must find another event for the second-half of the season.
Bernard had been working with promoters in Qingdao the last several months to salvage the race, which was announced last November to run at the same time as the International Beer Festival. The inaugural race would have been held on a temporary 3.87-mile street circuit in the city that hosted the 2008 Summer Olympics sailing competition.
IndyCar teams look for electronic edge When IndyCar vehicles motor around the track this year, microcontrollers are monitoring virtually every component, from the engine to the gearbox to the shock absorbers, but the conditions under which they can provide a competitive edge are being carefully controlled.
To contain costs and maintain relative parity among the cars, IndyCar declared this year that competitors are not allowed to tamper with the software code in the engine control unit (ECU) or the gearbox control unit (GCU). For the most part, the cars will run with the same electronic hardware and software.
"The rules now prevent us from getting into the ECU," Mark Johnson, general manager of KV Racing Technology, told us. "In years past, we had the latitude to work with the code, but we're not allowed to do that anymore."
IndyCar future at TMS remains unsettled High atop the broadcast center, behind Victory Lane at Texas Motor Speedway, was a banner that sent several strong messages to INDYCAR CEO Randy Bernard. "This is the 23rd IndyCar race at Texas Motor Speedway. More than any track in IndyCar. Texas loves IndyCar!"
"Texas Motor Speedway hosts the largest IndyCar crowd for any race outside the Indy 500!"
There was a tremendous amount of uncertainty heading into last Saturday's Firestone 550 at Texas Motor Speedway, and with good reason. It was the first time the series had competed at a 1.5-mile oval since Dan Wheldon was killed in a 15-car crash on a similar-shaped track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in October 2011. Efforts were made to eliminate "pack racing" with the new Dallara DW12 chassis, putting more control into the driver's hands rather than a race car. And those efforts worked well in a highly competitive race with 10 lead changes and Justin Wilson winning on an oval for the first time in his IndyCar career.
Joey Logano delivered many answers (or got the call) in muscling past Mark Martin to win Sunday's Pocono 400. But there was one significant question that is unanswered as the Sprint Cup Series heads to Michigan International Speedway. Where will Logano be driving next season? "I haven't been informed on where I stand for next year yet, so it's all up in the air," he said. "Obviously winning a race means a lot, and it helps that out a ton. For sure right now my future is not set with anybody. To get this win means a lot. It's at a perfect time."
Outside groove gone at Bristol Bristol Motor Speedway has witnessed the initial laps on its recently altered surface. On day one of a two-day Goodyear Tire test #14-Tony Stewart, #31-Jeff Burton and #15-Clint Bowyer circled the half-mile concrete oval, and will wrap up the session on Wednesday. While it's impossible to predict how the racing action will be when NASCAR hits Bristol for August race week and the IRWIN Tools Night Race, the trio of drivers offered their comments following a full day of lapping the banks of Bristol. The same drivers will return on Wednesday to complete the Goodyear Tire test. Goodyear has mandated that the test sessions are closed to the public and media.
Will Power, Scott Dixon penalized for Milwaukee IndyCar drivers Will Power and Scott Dixon, who rank first and second in the points chase, will face 10-spot starting grid penalties for this week’s race in Milwaukee after blowing their engines testing at Iowa.
IndyCar director of engine development Trevor Knowles says Dixon blew an engine Tuesday morning testing on Iowa’s 0.875-mile oval, while Power’s went out later in the day. IndyCar drivers Will Power and Scott Dixon, who rank first and second in the points chase, will face 10-spot starting grid penalties for this week’s race in Milwaukee after blowing their engines testing at Iowa.
IndyCar director of engine development Trevor Knowles says Dixon blew an engine Tuesday morning testing on Iowa’s 0.875-mile oval, while Power’s went out later in the day.
By 1901, six years after the first race, the cars had advanced to look like this. The first Indy 500 did not run until 1911, but these pre-F1 cars were already more sophisticated than the cars that ran at Indy in 1911.
On this day (June 13) in 1895, Emile Levassor drives a Panhard et Levassor car with a two-cylinder, 750-rpm, four-horsepower Daimler Phoenix engine over the finish line in the world's first real automobile race. Levassor completed the 732-mile course, from Paris to Bordeaux and back, in just under 49 hours, at a then-impressive speed of about 15 miles per hour.
Levassor and his partner Rene Panhard operated one of the largest machine shops in Paris in 1887, when a Belgian engineer named Edouard Sarazin convinced Levassor to manufacture a new high-speed engine for the German automaker Daimler, for which Sarazin had obtained the French patent rights.
NASCAR Sprint Cup TV ratings down again Fox averaged a 4.8 final Nielsen rating and 7.9 million viewers for its 13 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series telecasts this season, down 4% and 8%, respectively, from a 5.0 rating and 8.6 million viewers last season reports Sports Business Journal. The rating for the telecasts this season is also flat with ’10, while viewership was up slightly from 7.8 million viewers.
Grand-Am happy to race at Indy to further dilute the IndyCar series
The infamous Tony George wearing a hat spouting the dumbest slogan in the history of all sports
[Editor's Note: The day Tony George let the France family (NASCAR) and F1 into the brickyard was the day the Indy 500 attendance began to dwindle. Now they are allowing the Nationwide and Grand-Am series in to further dilute the fan base. Indy fans can only afford to buy so many tickets in one season. Hence why attendance for this year's Indy 500 was down noticeably and why it will continue to dwindle. The Indy 500 used to sellout within weeks of the tickets going on sale. Now they have to beg to give them away. More data points on Tony George's legacy of destroying IndyCar racing. IMS is the holy grail of IndyCar racing. Daytona is the holy grail of stock car racing. It will be a cold day in hell when the France family lets IndyCar race at stock car's holy grail palace. That point was missed with Tony George.]
GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series drivers and teams prepared for the inaugural Kroger Super Weekend at the Brickyard in July by participating in a tire test on the Grand Prix road course Tuesday, June 12 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
GRAND-AM will make its IMS debut Friday, July 27. Separate races for the Rolex Sports Car Series and Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge will take place that day on the 13-turn, 2.534-mile Grand Prix course at IMS, with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and Nationwide Series action also on the oval during the four-day event from July 26-29.
Former Crew Chief Jeff Hammond Provides Insights on Kurt Busch
Kurt Busch told Bob Pockrass where to stick it and got penalized for it
Former crew chief Jeff Hammond, a NASCAR analyst for FOX & SPEED, stopped by the NASCAR Race Hub studio tonight to chat about Phoenix Racing Car Owner James Finch’s retention of driver Kurt Busch.
Hammond, who spent some time as Busch’s crew chief during the 2000 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, spoke with host Steve Byrnes about the decision and how he thinks the future could play out for Phoenix Racing. Busch returned to the team after NASCAR suspended the 2004 series champion after a run-in with writer Bob Pockrass.
Short oval package won't short-change excitement Following a smashing success of the new car-engine package at Texas Motor Speedway, the IZOD IndyCar Series completes the mid-season trio of oval events at the Milwaukee Mile and Iowa Speedway.
Those consecutive Saturday races won't lack for entertainment, but they'll be devoid of the drama associated with how a rear wicker the thickness of Tuesday's USA Today can influence a race car's performance on a 1.5-mile, high-banked speedway.
The short oval aerodynamic package for the 1-mile, flat Milwaukee track and .875-mile, progressively banked Iowa Speedway is closely aligned with the road/street course platform. The lone mandatory element is the addition of front brake duct backing plates, while two-thirds radiator inlet shutters are options. Rear wheel infils and sidepod top decks (drag reductions) are verboten.
Sato talks about Milwaukee race SATO ON GETTING BACK ON THE LEAD LAP TO FINISH EIGHTH IN HIS LONE START HERE Takuma raced at the legendary Milwaukee Mile in 2011 where he started fifth and finished eighth. “It was a tough, long race but I enjoyed it a lot,” recalled Sato. “I was able to run a good pace at the beginning of the race but during the pit stop I got tangled up getting into the pit box so I got a drive through penalty, which put me at the back of the field and down a lap, but over the next two caution yellows I managed to get my lap back and I fought my way back into the top-10. There was a non-stop battle and racing the whole field all the time and that was an exciting weekend.”
SATO ON THE CHALLENGES OF THE MILWAUKEE MILE “It is a very challenging track simply because there is no banking to help the car so the driver has to work very hard to turn and really needs to drive the car. Overtaking is not easy but still it’s doable so it seems always nose to tail racing here. Also you cannot go through the corner flat (on the accelerator) so that makes it naturally very challenging. Qualifying could be just flat or very close to do it.”
Haug: Affordable V6s not impossible Mercedes Motorsport chief Norbert Haug believes that F1 can move to 'greener' V6 turbo engines at a reasonable cost if the plan is phased in.
From 2014, teams will be expected to make use of the V6 engines and there are fears that the V6 will cost almost double what the current engines cost to produce. If this is the case, smaller teams may find it no longer financially viable to take part in the sport.
However, Haug feels that if the plan to use V6s is phased in over a five-year period than the problem will not be so great.
Statement From Phoenix Racing regarding Kurt Busch and the #51 Chevy Below is a statement from James Finch, owner of Phoenix Racing, regarding Kurt Busch and the #51 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet. "We have met with Kurt. At the end of the day, we are racers so we're going racing together with Kurt and the #51 Phoenix Racing Chevrolet. We know adjustments have to be made but how we fix that is between Kurt and myself. We're going to go to the track, work hard, race hard and work on trying to attract a sponsor and we're going to do that together." Phoenix Racing
Charlie Whiting visits Austin circuit Circuit of The Americas today announced that FIA Formula One Race Director Charlie Whiting visited its soon-to-be-completed sports and entertainment complex in southeast Travis County and gave the company high marks for progress made on the purpose-built Grand Prix facility and its 3.4-mile racing circuit.
Whiting heads the Formula 1 Technical Department and manages the logistics of each F1 Grand Prix. His responsibilities include inspecting F1 host sites and race cars to ensure they comply with FIA rules, monitoring and enforcing safety issues important to the sport, and serving as the official starter of each race. Whiting’s visit comes on the heels of the Grand Prix du Canada in Montreal on June 10, the first of two stops the F1 series will make in North America this year, with Austin’s race weekend set for Nov. 16-18.
TV Ratings for NASCAR Pocono The TV Ratings for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pocono 400 at Pocono Raceway on Sunday posted an overnight rating of 3/2/8 for TNT, up from last years Pocono 500 rating of 3.0/7.
IndyCar announces rules for Iowa Qualifying Heat Races Two IZOD IndyCar Series practice sessions June 22 totaling 90 minutes will play integral roles in setting the starting grid for the Iowa Corn Indy 250.
As announced by INDYCAR in mid-February, three heat races of 30 laps each will replace single-car qualifications for the June 23 race under the lights on the .875-mile Iowa Speedway oval.
According to Rule 8.5 of the IZOD IndyCar Series rulebook, groups for the 6:15 p.m. (local) qualifications will be determined by combined practice session times.
Twitter's first TV commercial features NASCAR Twitter Inc aired its first TV ads to tout its advertising potential on Sunday during a NASCAR broadcast on Time Warner Inc's TNT cable network. The ads, produced as part of a partnership between Twitter and NASCAR, come as the six-year old micro-blogging service seeks to establish itself as a serious social media business, despite heightened doubts about the sector in the wake of Facebook Inc's bumpy IPO.
Twitter is hoping to attract major brands to its service by cultivating the widespread use of hashtags - the keywords in a tweet preceded by the symbol (#) that denote a tweet's topic - and promoting hashtag pages as destinations where consumers can find information or supplemental content about products. Using NASCAR to demonstrate how hashtag pages could work, Twitter aired six different 15-second spots during Sunday's Pocono 400 race that introduced the "#NASCAR" hashtag and directed viewers to the URL "twitter.com/#NASCAR."
Goodyear tire test at Bristol Tuesday & Wednesday Three drivers will get the first look at the revamped Bristol Motor Speedway as part of a Goodyear tire test scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday. The grinding of the upper groove was completed on the 0.533-mile concrete oval last week. The changes are designed to diminish the upper lane and create only two racing grooves. #14-Tony Stewart, #31-Jeff Burton and #15-Clint Bowyer are scheduled to test Tuesday and Wednesday but rain is in the forecast for Tuesday. The test is closed to the public and media. Sporting News
F1 champ races through Grand Prix test run in Weehawken, West New York Screeching tires and burning rubber marked the Hudson County waterfront today, when the defending Formula One world champion did doughnuts on local streets that may host the Grand Prix of America next year.
Sebastian Vettel in Weehawken NJ on the edge of the Hudson River overlooking Manhattan
"I think this place is just exceptional," said Sebastian Vettel, auto racing’s 24-year-old German superstar, later during a news conference in Weehawken to promote the race. He favorably compared the Hudson County course to that in Monaco, home of the most famous of all Formula One races.
Leo Hindery Jr., the former endurance racer and YES network head who is organizing the grand prix, said he expected the London-based Formula One organization to officially designate the race as part of its 2013 international calendar sometime "early next month."
"The intention is to follow the Canadian," said Hindery, referring to Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal, which is run every year in June.
Yamaha Confirms Lorenzo for 2013 and 2014 It is with great pleasure that Yamaha Motor Co. Ltd can confirm the extension of Jorge Lorenzo’s contract to ride for the Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP Team for 2013 and 2014.
Jorge Lorenzo joined Yamaha in 2008, achieving fourth place in his first season and claiming the Rookie of the Year title. He was then second in 2009, went on to become MotoGP World Champion in 2010 and was second again in 2011.
Lorenzo currently leads the 2012 MotoGP Championship by 20 points having taken three victories from the first five completed races of the 18 race series.
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