Video: Jon Beekhuis explains new IndyCar wheel nutsUPDATE A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, Dallara ripped off that wheel nut design from Metalore. They changed the thread pitch just enough to obsolete all the teams spares. I hear a rumor that the team owners are about to revolt over Dallara parts prices. Lawyers are involved...... I hear after Dario's suspension failed, the useful mileage life has been cut in half. Oh to have a Lola or Reynard again! John Miller
06/20/12 Professor B aka. Jon Beekhuis talks to us about the wheel nuts on the IZOD INDYCAR Series car.
NASCAR side skirt and sway bar rules change NASCAR has increased the ground clearance of the side skirts on Sprint Cup cars again in hopes of improving the aerodynamics of the cars.
The minimum clearance between the ground and the bottom of the body of the side panels (called the side skirts because they are extensions of the side panels) will be 4.5 inches on the right side and 5 inches on the left side, according to a NASCAR technical bulletin issued Wednesday.
At the start of the year, the clearance was 3 inches on each side. Last month, NASCAR increased the clearance by an inch on the right side of the car and 1.5 inches on the left.
NASCAR Michigan Sprint Cup TV RatingUPDATE The final rating was a 3.0/7 share Sunday afternoon for the Michigan 400. That’s up +11% over last year’s 2.7/7 share for the same race.
06/18/12 Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race from Michigan drew a 3.1 overnight rating on TNT Sunday afternoon, up 15% from last year (2.7). The race marked the first time in four years that Dale Earnhardt Jr. won a Sprint Cup race. Despite the increase, the 3.1 is the lowest of the season for any NASCAR Sprint Cup race, and marks a slight drop from a 3.2 for the previous week’s Pocono 400.
It's one of the most unique relationships in sports. The relationship between a driver and race engineer has to be one of complete trust, a back-and-forth of sharing theories that are put to test in real situations every race weekend.
Firestone Indy Lights competitor Gustavo Yacaman referred to it as an investor-investee relationship. His race engineer, Mike Colliver, said maybe student-teacher or doctor-patient.
Colliver and Yacaman started working together last season at the twin Firestone Indy Lights races in Edmonton, Alberta, after Yacaman's engineer left the team. He worked for a while with Team Moore Racing principal Mark Moore, but depended on Colliver for advice throughout the transition.
F1 hires marketing whiz Michael Payne away from IOC Formula One has hired Michael Payne, one of the world's most accomplished sports marketers, away from the International Olympic Committee.
The move is part of a restructuring at the top, as F1 continues to make new executive appointments in preparation for the eventual departure of Bernie Ecclestone, its 82-year-old CEO.
Last month, ahead of a scheduled partial flotation of its stock, F1 appointed a new chairman, Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, and three new directors. Now, the London-based group has recruited both a marketing director and a chief marketing consultant, both from other top-tier sports organizations.
IMS IndyCar road race seen as threat to Indy 500 Minus a miraculous change of heart, the IndyCar Series is not going to be racing on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course this season.
It would seem that the road course would be an easy solution after the open-wheel series’ race in China was cancelled earlier this month. That cancellation leaves the series one race short of meeting some sponsor commitments—most notably with title sponsor Izod—to have 16 races on its calendar.
It would seem the series has a 2.6-mile road track in Indianapolis ready to go, a work force in place to host a race and a solid fan base to fill if not all the seats, then at least 75,000 or so. That’s a good-size paying crowd these days for an IndyCar race. And there would be a high curiosity factor for an IndyCar road race at Indy, which would likely generate highly sought national publicity for the series and Speedway. I’m quite certain officials at series broadcast partners ABC or NBC would salivate over the opportunity to televise the first IndyCar road race at the Brickyard.
Patrick Racing and the ALMS to develop Natural Gas Power for 2013 Season
Embracing natural gas as a safe and abundant transportation fuel, the legendary Patrick Racing Team has entered into an agreement with the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA), sanctioning body for the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron (ALMS), to identify development and testing opportunities for the fuel system to power the Series' Prototype Challenge class beginning in the 2013 season.
"We are excited to become a part of the world's premier sports car racing series and eager to help spread this technology to a vibrant, visible and growing element of the racing world," said U.E. "Pat" Patrick, whose teams have three times visited the winner's circle of the Indianapolis 500 and have claimed multiple IndyCar series championships.
Gribkowsky admits accepting Ecclestone bribes (GMM) Former F1 banker Gerhard Gribkowsky on Wednesday finally admitted he received millions in bribes from the sport's chief executive Bernie Ecclestone.
The news from Germany follows recent speculation Gribkowsky, who now faces years in jail, would make the admission as part of a deal with prosecutors to minimize his sentence.
Ecclestone, 81, has claimed he paid Gribkowsky the millions amid F1's sale some years ago because the former BayernLB risk officer 'shook him down' by threatening to cause trouble with UK tax authorities.
But DAPD news agency on Wednesday quoted Gribkowsky as telling the Munich state court that the bribery charges were "essentially true".
JGR working on engine issues Joe Gibbs Racing experienced some highs and lows at Pocono Raceway a week ago with #20-Joey Logano winning the race but teammate Kyle Busch suffering engine failure. On Sunday at Michigan International Speedway, it was all lows. Busch suffered another engine failure. Denny Hamlin was involved in a wreck and then had to escape a fire when his car went up in flames. And Logano also crashed. On the day, Busch was 32nd, Hamlin 34th and Logano 35th.
"I keep thinking to myself, I'm looking for something easy (to do) and I'm running out of time," said team owner Joe Gibbs, a retired NFL coach. "This certainly isn't it. It was a tough day for us."
For Busch, it was his third engine issue in as many weeks. JGR merged its engine department with Toyota Racing Development after last season. All the engines are built at TRD in California and then shipped to JGR, which handles the final tuning and race weekend management. Busch's problems haven't been the same issue each week, but that can be even more exasperating for the team as it tries to fix multiple issues. Gibbs said the team knew what happened to the engines at Dover and Pocono. Sporting News
Sato Returns to the Site of His First IndyCar Series Pole ONE PODIUM IN TWO EVENTS AT IOWA SPEEDWAY FOR RLL RACING
The Iowa Corn Indy 250 will mark the third event for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) at Iowa Speedway. The best finish for the team is third in 2007 by Scott Sharp who also earned the top start for the team of fourth the same year. Prior to the 2012 event, the team prepared a total of three entries for drivers Scott Sharp (2007), Jeff Simmons (2007) and Ryan Hunter-Reay (2008). The team has earned ONE podium (3rd, Sharp 2007) and two, top-10 finishes at the track. The No. 15 entry for Takuma Sato will bring that total to four entries in 2012.
SATO ON WINNING IOWA POLE AFTER HIS LOSING HIS FATHER
Takuma Sato competed at Iowa Speedway in 2010 and 2011 and won his first IndyCar Series pole there last year with a 2-lap average speed of 180.375. “It was a special moment,’ recalled Sato. “Not only because it was my very first pole in IndyCar but also because it was right after my father passed away. I wished I could have achieved it before but nevertheless, I would like to think he was still seeing it somewhere and I was very proud and most grateful to my father for his support to make it happen and to be standing where I was that day.”
Lime Rock: Chase for ALMS Championships Resume BRASELTON, Ga. - As is normally tradition – except for one season since 2004 – the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n starts its summer swing at Lime Rock Park. This year’s American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix will see 32 entries on the grid: 15 prototypes and 17 GT cars.
It’ll be close quarters for the fourth round of the ALMS championship. The 1.5-mile, seven-turn circuit at Lime Rock provides no room for error in a race featuring multiple classes with differing speeds and performance capabilities.
Last year's winner was Marco Andretti after a fierce battle with Tony Kanaan. Both are Chevy drivers this year.
One-half of the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series season is in the record books, and it has been successful for the Chevrolet IndyCar V-6 engine with five victories and 13 podium finishes in eight races. Chevrolet continues to lead the Series’ Manufacturers’ standings, and a Gold Bowtie driver has led the driver’s point standings since the checkered flag flew at race one.
Now up is Iowa Speedway, a 0.875-mile banked oval. This will be the third consecutive race on an oval, although none of the three (Texas Motor Speedway, Milwaukee Mile and Iowa Speedway) are similar in configuration or length. Coming off a strong performance for Chevrolet at the Milwaukee Mile with a sweep of the top-six finishing positions and eight of the top-10, the Chevy IndyCar V-6 teams are looking to continue to show their strength at the Newton, Iowa track.
Chevy Cars dominated last weekend in Milwaukee but Honda aims to change that in Iowa
Saturday night's race at Iowa Speedway will be the fifth consecutive week of IZOD IndyCar Series racing, and Honda-powered drivers have claimed the top two finishing positions at three of the four races contested during that run. Iowa is the second and final short oval on the 2012 schedule, and the first to feature three, 30-lap heat races, which will be run on Friday night to set the field for Saturday night's 250-lap feature event.
The Honda winning streak started May 27 at the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500, won by Dario Franchitti ahead of his Target Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Scott Dixon in a thrilling race.
Allgaier looks for different ending to Road America finish at Sargento 200
Even though he has made only two starts at the legendary four-mile road course, it was last season's race at Road America that will forever be ingrained upon the memory of Justin Allgaier. After the 2011 event was extended past its original distance of 50 laps, Allgaier found himself in the lead during the final green-white-checkered finish attempt, hoping he had enough fuel to get him to the checkered flag. Unfortunately, the caution flag was waved half way to the white flag, thus ending the race. All Allgaier had to do was make it back to the flag stand under pit road speed, but he was unable to do so as the car ran out of fuel.
Star Mazda's Team GDT, Tveter get TV time Star Mazda driver Ryan Tveter and Team GDT will be featured in a documentary filmed during the Honda Indy Toronto June 6-8 race weekend and produced by Rogers TV.
As part of its involvement, Rogers TV is launching a contest on www.RogersTV.com to win a behind-the-scenes experience at the races at Exhibition Place for Ontario residents at least 18-years-old.
NBC Sports Network expands coverage of Iowa event NBC Sports Network will expand its coverage of this weekend's Iowa Corn Indy 250 with more than six hours of coverage of the June 23 IZOD IndyCar Series event.
Coverage begins at 7:30 p.m. (ET) with the latest episode of the all-access series INDYCAR 36.
The NBC Sports Network original series is produced by IMS Productions and gives viewers an all-access pass into the life of an IZOD IndyCar Series driver in the middle of race season. The cameras will follow a driver for 36 hours during a race weekend providing a behind-the-scenes look at the on- and off-track activities of the stars of the IZOD IndyCar Series. This week the spotlight shines on Charlie Kimball, who races for Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing.
IndyCar technical penalty update There were no technical penalties issued following the IZOD IndyCar Series race at the Milwaukee Mile. KV Racing Technology has opted to change the engines in the No. 5 car of E.J. Viso and No. 11 car of Tony Kanaan for this weekend's race at Iowa Speedway and will be subject to a 10 grid-spot penalty.
NASCAR Michigan Nationwide Series TV RatingUPDATE ABC’s live telecast of the NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Michigan International Speedway on Saturday, June 16, earned a 1.6 final rating, averaging 2,241,541 viewers, according to the Nielsen Company. The rating was up from the 1.5 earned for last year’s event.
06/18/12 The overnight TV rating for the NASCAR Nationwide race from Michigan International Speedway Saturday on ABC was a 1.6.
Kurt Busch has yet another altercation with a member of the media In his first interaction with the media following his one-race suspension for a verbal altercation with a member of the media, Kurt Busch had … another brief altercation. This time it came with ESPN's Marty Smith following Busch's third-place run in Saturday's Nationwide race. Per NASCAR rules, any driver who finishes in the top three is mandated to first talk with MRN Radio on pit road, then visit the infield media center. Busch skipped his pit-road obligation. When told in the media center that MRN had reported he'd left without fulfilling his obligations, Busch reportedly replied, "That's what everybody says, don't they?"
F1 still looking to protect drivers head Following Conor Daly’s GP3 accident in Monaco, Charlie Whiting, Formula 1′s Race Director provided a fascinating insight into the current levels of safety and accepted driving standards in the sport.
With regard to canopies on cars: Q. Debris very luckily missed the cars coming through it. How are things going at the FIA with your investigations into cockpit safety?
Whiting: That’s a big project and we’ve tried fighter jet canopies. They work but there are quite a few problems with those. They need to be 30 millimeters thick which presents sufficient optical difficulties. We need to try and get something that you can see through when you’re sat down there and that’s very hard. We tried a roll structure. It’s an ugly thing but it did the job. So next we’re trying to find something that’ll be a deflector. In the end we may have to end up with something that will help a lot but won’t eradicate the likelihood of something hitting a driver. It may not prove to be impossible to completely eradicate that. Even if you put a driver in a closed car, there’s no guarantee a wheel won’t fly through the windscreen for example. We are doing our best, the guys at the Institute are doing a lot of work on this, but it is not the work of a moment and it is fraught with difficulty.
Editor's Note: Well it is clear the F1 safety institute have not spoken to the correct people. AR1.com contacted a jet fighter canopy manufacturer that makes canopies for fighter jets traveling at over 2,000 mph and not only do their canopies have optical clarity for the pilots, they are protected with a special see-through coating that reflects the sun light out.
How Roger Penske revived a 7-story downtown SF jewel
The Penske dealerships in San Francisco
Roger Penske's opening of a seven-story auto dealership in downtown San Francisco last month was a daring step for the global industry magnate.
San Francisco leans left and buys green. And for 40 years, its consumers have shopped for cars and trucks in the suburbs.
But Penske, seeing opportunity downtown, put a combined Nissan and Infiniti dealership into an abandoned building that was arguably the jewel of the city's one-time auto row.
But the 75-year-old auto retailing, racing and truck leasing mogul was not the only powerful mover and shaker behind the new store. Before he could think of doing it, he first had to win the favor and approval of Mrs. Brooks.
Luxury discounts rise as Lexus, Mercedes, BMW fight for sales crown U.S. consumers are getting better deals on luxury cars and SUVs this year as the top brands clear out old models and race to be No. 1 in sales.
Toyota Motor Corp.'s Lexus has led the rise in customer incentives. Lexus boosted discounts on its cars by 54 percent this year and its SUVs by 60 percent, according to researcher Autodata Corp.
Mercedes-Benz increased incentives 11 percent and BMW AG by 6.9 percent, compared with a 2.2 percent gain in industry-wide promotions.
Valencia reduced to single DRS zone The FIA has confirmed to organizers of the European Grand Prix that the sole DRS zone for this weekend's race will be located on the back stretch, beginning after the iconic swing bridge. This means that the second zone towards the Turn 17 hairpin has been removed.
Should a car be close enough to that in front when coming off the bridge, DRS will be available – from Lap 3 after the start or a restart – through the left-handed Turn 11. This allows drivers the possibility of increased speed along the back stretch of the port and an ideal passing opportunity under braking for Turn 12, where Fernando Alonso and Mark Webber battled last year.
More action should be expected at Turn 12 this season, as in theory overtaking opportunities have been reduced. Furthermore, F1 tire supplier Pirelli is not expecting huge surprises in the race, placing extra emphasis on qualifying performances.
FOX Looking to Extend NASCAR Deal Fox has started serious negotiations with NASCAR about an early extension of its TV rights package, jump-starting a process that wasn't expected to begin until early next year, according to several sources. The early negotiations will allow FOX to avoid bidding for NASCAR rights in the open market, where potential suitor NBC is expected to drive up prices. According to the report, fellow incumbents ESPN and Turner Sports have not yet begun negotiating with NASCAR. FOX acquired NASCAR rights in 1999 and began airing races in 2001. Sports Media Watch / Sports Business Journal
Halfway through season, title competition fierce Tony Kanaan opened the post-race news conference with his own question: "Can we race here again, that race that is missing?"
The runner-up to Ryan Hunter-Reay in the Milwaukee IndyFest Presented by XYQ would be among 25 IZOD IndyCar Series proponents to fill the gap in the August schedule created by the cancellation of the China race with a follow-up visit to the Milwaukee Mile.
That's not under consideration, but it was announced just before the green flag that the historic venue will again play host to the series in June 2013. At least that's something for Kanaan, who has finished no worse than fourth in six of his eight starts at the Mile. It was the best finish of the season for the 2004 IZOD IndyCar Series champion, who moved to eighth in the championship standings.
Downforce reduction for Iowa puts racing in drivers' hands Pursuant to input from IZOD IndyCar Series drivers and team engineers, INDYCAR has directed a maximum rear flap angle of 37 degrees with no wicker allowed for the Iowa Corn Indy 250 on June 23 at Iowa Speedway.
The technical bulletin sent to teams June 18 follows two days of testing by 21 cars total at the .875-mile oval last week. The rule will reduce downforce available by about 8-9 percent.
"Like Texas, we want to make sure the challenge is in the drivers' hands and make them work each lap," said Will Phillips, vice president of technology, INDYCAR. "It will be more of a challenge for drivers once their tires start to go off (during the 250-lap race)."
Iowa heat race fields to be determined by one practice INDYCAR has amended the procedure to determine qualification groups for the three heat races to be held June 22 at Iowa Speedway to set the starting grid for the Iowa Corn Indy 250 the next night.
Qualification groups will be determined by lap times recorded by entries on the .875-mile oval in the second (45-minute) practice session (3:30 p.m. ET). Qualifications are scheduled for 7:15 p.m. (ET).
Race 1 will consist of the even-numbered positions, starting with the 10th-quickest practice time, and determine the even-numbered positions in the starting field from 10th down.
At the Hertz British Grand Prix at Silverstone it was Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo who recorded a hard fought victory in an exciting MotoGP™ race ahead of Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa. The predicted rain stayed away for the MotoGP grid as Yamaha’s Ben Spies took the holeshot ahead of Repsol Honda Team’s Stoner and San Carlo Honda Gresini’s pole-sitter Álvaro Bautista. Spies made a tremendous start leading the early stages from Stoner, Bautista and Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden. Lorenzo lost a place in the first bends, and was soon leading a separated group for fifth place.
With 17 laps remaining Lorenzo started to find his rhythm as he looked to close the gap to the front four, followed by Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Andrea Dovizioso and Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa. A lap later Hayden tried to dart past Bautista into third, but ran too wide, allowing the Spaniard back in. Soon after Stoner made his move past Spies, as the Texan made a mistake, also going too hot into a turn.
The lowdown on QingdaoUPDATE A reader writes, Dear AutoRacing1.com: I don’t know why Indy Car wouldn’t schedule a race on the road course at the Brickyard as a replacement race for China. They could also run the ladder series’ that weekend. Plus I am sure that the SCCA Pirelli World Challenge teams would be up for a spot as a support race and it would be a huge deal for them to run at Indy. They are going to use the road course during the Brickyard Super Weekend so set up should not be a problem. Paul Mahon
Dear Paul, As we wrote, the Hulman George family would prefer to dilute the IndyCar brand at the Brickyard by running many different series, even the lowly Grand-Am series (Swamp Buggy Racing will be next) instead of solidifying the IndyCar brand by running a 2nd IndyCar race at the Brickyard - the 'home' of Indy Cars and the IndyCar brand. Regardless, it's too late for this year anyway. It would be better for IndyCar to race at Road America with ALMS in place of China if they can do a deal. Mark C.
06/16/12 It's common knowledge now that IndyCar was forced to cancel its upcoming Qingdao, China race. What's not known is why it was really cancelled and how very important it is for IndyCar to not give up on China. In this article we give you the 'Paul Harvey Now that's the rest of the story' inside facts into what went into cancelling what was to be IndyCar's most important new race since its inception. See Home page feature article for all the details of what really happened.
Tony Stewart not fawning over Dale Jr. win like rest of NASCAR sheep
It took him four years to win a race despite having the best car on the grid, so Tony Stewart wasn't very impressed with Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s victory on Sunday.
Don’t count Tony Stewart among the hundreds of people in NASCAR who were thrilled to see Dale Earnhardt Jr. end his long winless streak Sunday.
While other rival drivers were happy to see Earnhardt finally win, Stewart, who finished second at Michigan International Speedway, didn’t want to celebrate the milestone victory.
“(It’s) no different to anybody else that does it,” Stewart said. “It's not a national holiday, guys.”
Stewart then added sarcastically: “This morning, they were celebrating his fourth anniversary of his last win, so I guess we are all in a state of mourning now because he's broke that streak now, so I don't know what we are all supposed to think.”
She spun three times and hit the wall once, but kudos to Danica Patrick for trying to race a loose car in order to be fast. She was fast, but she'll need to learn to drive loose without crashing if she wants to contend for race wins on a consistent basis in NASCAR
A slightly loose race car is the fastest way around a track. Everyone will tell you that the great race car drivers can drive a car slightly loose for long periods of time and not crash.
Danica Patrick spun three times, including hitting the wall once, but was able to stay on the lead lap and finish 18th in the Alliance Truck Parts 250 at Michigan on Saturday.
“I would use ‘white knuckle’ to describe how it was for a big chunk of it,” Patrick said. “It was pretty loose for most of the race. … We’re going to need to free the car up if we’re going to run in the top-10, top-five spot the whole day.
“I don’t know if it was too loose for that or if it was just something I need to learn how to drive. It was very difficult to be aggressive with the car.”
Motorsports This Week on ESPN NASCAR Nationwide Series at Road America on ESPN The NASCAR Nationwide Series races this weekend at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis., and the race airs live on ESPN on Saturday, June 23. NASCAR Countdown airs at 3 p.m. ET with the race’s green flag at 3:51 p.m. Also from Road America, ESPN2 airs NASCAR Nationwide Series qualifying on Saturday at 10 a.m.
With Danica Patrick competing in the race, the Road America event telecast is part of ESPN Networks’ full day of women in sports programming on June 23. The offering culminates the company’s three-month multiplatform initiative, The Power of IX, recognizing the 40th anniversary of Title IX, signed June 23, 1972.
Milwaukee no where near what it was A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, I stumbled across this video of the 1996 Milwaukee 200 CART IndyCar race. Look how many people were there. Every grandstand seat was taken and the infield was packed. Tony George had a better idea alright. What was so bad about CART back then? Look at all the big sponsors on the cars I cry when I see stuff like this and compare it to the crowd at Milwaukee Saturday. Every time I think about what Tony George and the other minions that supported him did I nearly lose it. Also note the track was two grooves back then. Not so now with that new patch of asphalt in the lower groove of the turns now. They ruined the track. And Paul Page was a great announcer. Andrea Jacobs
IndyCar needs to take a lesson from NASCAR IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard and competition director Beaux Barfield need to camp out in front of the television today with pen and paper.
Better yet, jump on a plane and travel to Michigan International Speedway and take in firsthand the Quicken Loans 400 Sprint Cup event. Apparently, these two need pointers on how to run a national series.
I’m not a big fan of all the convoluted rules in NASCAR but after witnessing IndyCar’s engine policies and the penalty that follows, maybe the men pulling the stock-car strings in Daytona aren’t all that bad.
Reactions to Dale Jr. breaking 4-year losing streak The lengthy wait and peretual debate are over … Dale Earnhardt Jr. found his way back to Victory Lane Sunday at Michigan to snap a 143-race winless streak that dated back four years to the same weekend at the same track.
Below, SEED on-air personalities discuss the significance of his breakthrough win and the long road that led to it:
“This is a classic example of a team putting itself in position to win over the past year or two. Sure, the long-awaited victory is important, especially to Junior Nation, but the more important measure of the No. 88 team is its improvement in average finish position and points standing during that time. Those yardsticks tell me the wins will keep coming.
24 Hours of Le Mans 240,000 spectators! [Editors Note: The Indy 500 used to be the biggest sporting event in the world. That was until Tony George created the IRL and turned IndyCar racing into a shadow of its former self. Now LeMans dwarfs it] Thank you to all our spectators. They numbered more than 240,000 within the circuit for this 80th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Nevertheless, compared to 2011, this represents a small reduction for the Automobile Club de l’Ouest as there were 249,500 spectators on that occasion.
For the record, the Automobile Club de l’Ouest sold 238,150 entry tickets in 2010 and 230,000 in 2009.
There are likely to be several reasons for this reduction: the economic pressure on households, competing political and sporting events, uncertain weather forecast.
Andretti deserves victory lap for IndyFest West Allis - Just before raindrops began to make the track unplayable for unroofed 650-horsepower machines with slick tires, Hizzoner Barrett reached into his Wizard of Oz sack and presented Michael Andretti with a proclamation that basically declared the guy had the heart, brains and courage (not to mention the money) to save IndyCar racing in our town.
A few hours later, after the track was sufficiently dry to drop the flag, Andretti proved it by in turn presenting Milwaukee with the scorched broomstick of success.
Essentially, the second-generation owner/promoter/retired driver of the noted racing clan hit a grand slam Saturday.
Wind Tunnel Sunday GRAMMY Award winning singer and former motocross racer, Lyle Lovett, will be a guest on Wind Tunnel Sunday to talk about his love of motorcycles and his upcoming documentary on legendary motorcycle racer and builder, John Penton. Lyle grew up riding the revolutionary Penton motorcycles and worked at a Penton dealership as a youngster. In the new film, Lyle narrates the story of one of his idols.
Leigh Diffey will stop by to break-down the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Robin Miller will tell us everything we need to know about Saturday’s IndyCar race in Milwaukee, and Krista Voda will help Dave break down all the other important stories from the racing weekend including the high speeds the Sprint CUP Series is posting in Michigan.
LeMans Hour 21: McNish takes lead then crashes Allan McNish assumed the lead of the 2012 Le Mans 24 Hours with three hours to go and then promptly crashed his Audi #2 as can be seen in the video below this news item.
When he pitted Treluyer had a 15s advantage over the Scot in Audi #1, but spun as he braked down to speed limit speed, costing him precious seconds.
Behind them Oliver Jarvis continued in third for Audi, three laps down on the leader but still ahead of the second R18 ultra driven by Marc Gene.
Video: Le Mans 24 Hours Allan McNish crashes while leading Allan McNish crashes his e-tron quattro in GT traffic while leading with less than 3 hours to go. This incident happened minutes after Gene crashed the #3 Audi. And yes, that’s yet another Ferrari involved.
MIS speeds slower but new tires require changes Speeds from Saturday's practice slowed by five to six miles per hour with the new left-side tires NASCAR mandated for Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway. NASCAR and Goodyear called for the change that left teams scrambling late Friday when tires began blistering because of excessive heat buildup from high speeds created by the newly-repaved track. Greg Biffle posted Saturday's top lap at 195.647 mph, down from the 199.093 mph he posted in race trim on Friday. In qualifying trim before the tire change, Biffle posted a fast lap of 204.708 mph. NASCAR made the move to avoid blowouts and another catastrophe such as the one at Indianapolis in 2008, when a competition caution was called every 12 laps because tires were blistering and blowing. The consensus after Saturday's practice, despite slower speeds and ill-handling cars, was the switch was necessary even though several top drivers had no issues with blistering on Friday.
Milwaukee race returning on Father's Day weekend in 2013 Perhaps the best news for race fans coming out of Saturday's Milwaukee IndyFest 225 is that there will be another.
Michael Andretti, whose management firm stepped in to save the 2012 event, announced just before the race that it will return next June.
"There were still a lot of people who were a little skeptical," Andretti said. "A lot of sponsors told us 'Let's see how you do this year' and I think we proved this was going to be a first-class, world-class event."
No official attendance figures were released, but as many as half the 45,000 grandstand seats were filled, a significant improvement from a poorly-attended 2011 event.
IndyCar left Milwaukee off its original 2012 schedule but the race was restored in February when Andretti's management firm stepped in to run it.
Michael Andretti has turned into the biggest hero in the IndyCar paddock. Rather than wasting his time with NASCAR's teams like Penske and Ganassi, Andretti is putting his heart and soul into bringing IndyCar racing back.
WEST ALLIS, Wis. -- Michael Andretti won five Indy car races at the Milwaukee Mile as a driver, and Ryan Hunter-Reay's triumph Saturday in the IndyFest 225 was Andretti's fourth in Milwaukee as a team owner.
But Andretti may have scored a more important victory by insuring Indy car racing's future in one of its most historic markets.
With Milwaukee left off the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series schedule, Andretti stepped up in March to serve as the event promoter. The grandstands weren't close to full, but the hastily organized event drew well enough to give Andretti the confidence to announce that he will bring Indy cars back to The Mile in 2013.
Andretti Sports Marketing is also coming to IndyCar's rescue by staging the upcoming Baltimore Grand Prix, another race in which promoter difficulties threatened the future of what was an extremely popular event last year in its inaugural running.
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