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DATE News (chronologically)
06/29/07
irl

Meira crashes
Vitor Meira's left front suspension collapsed on his Dallara Friday while practicing at Richmond causing him to crash hard and wipe out the right side of his car for Saturday night's Indy Car race.

Comment
06/29/07
nascar

Toyota team disqualified
Brian Vickers' No. 83 Team Red Bull Toyota failed post-qualifying inspection Friday afternoon at New Hampshire International Speedway, knocking the team out of the Lenox Industrial Tools 300 field and giving the spot to BAM Racing's Chad Chaffin.

The car for Vickers was ruled to be an eighth of an inch too low on its left front, and Vickers' qualifying time was disallowed.

The team was looking at shocks and springs to see why the car was too low.

"We go through inspection [before qualifying], the car is presented and it is correct," said an exasperated Doug Richert, crew chief for Vickers. "We never raise the hood. We didn't turn the screws. But now we go back through, we get thrown out and have to send our team home.

"I really don't have a good answer why. ... Did something go wrong? Did the spring go out? We don't see anything."

Comment
06/29/07
irl
nascar

IRL star wants out
Dan Wheldon loves to race, and a visit to NASCAR country with the IndyCar Series only highlights that passion – and makes him think more about moving over to stock cars and getting to do just about all the driving he can handle.

In the former capitol of the Confederacy and most locales where NASCAR’s top series races, race day looks much like Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Indy 500 day.

“For a driver, when you walk out the morning of the race and the place is packed, it creates such an atmosphere, a real energy,” Wheldon said at Richmond International Raceway, where the Indycar Series will run for the seventh time on Saturday night. “It’s certainly more enjoyable to drive amongst a crowd that’s very energetic.”

And to drive often, he said.

The IndyCar Series will race 17 times this season, while NASCAR’s Nextel Cup Series will race 36 times, the Busch Series 35 times and the Craftsman Truck Series 25 times. Many of the Busch and Craftsman races are run in tandem with Cup events.

“I don’t have family,” Wheldon said. “I have nothing here. As cheesy as it sounds, I just enjoy being in the race car. In my opinion, a race car’s a race car. If you’re racing to get ‘round the track quicker than anyone else, it doesn’t matter if you’re in a tank. It’s competition and I enjoy that, and that is very, very attractive to me.”

He also stays in touch with former open-wheel competitors Juan Pablo Montoya and A.J. Allmendinger, both of whom already have made the move to stock-car racing.

“I think Juan said he was going to do 63 races this year, and I would love to do that,” Wheldon said, before adding: “I really, really do enjoy driving IndyCar.” ThatsRacin.com

Comment
06/29/07
cc

San Jose Grand Prix back on right track
Now that the San Jose Grand Prix has stopped being a political football, Don Listwin wants to get back to his No. 1 goal: Raising money to fund research for the early detection of cancer.

When the Champ Car race received a $4 million city subsidy more than a year ago, it became campaign fodder in San Jose's mayoral race and overshadowed everything written about Listwin's Canary Foundation, the July 27-29 race's main sponsor.

"That message got lost last year through a series of events that were unfortunate from our perspective," the former Cisco executive told supporters Tuesday at A.P. Stump's in San Jose.

The foundation is picking up steam, though. Listwin said $1 million was raised in 2005, and that increased to more than $3 million in 2006. The foundation is on track, he said, to raise more than $6 million this year.

Read more & Comment...
06/29/07
irl

Rain washes out Indy Car qualifying
Starting lineup for the SunTrust Indy Challenge presented by XM IndyCar Series event on the 0.75-mile Richmond International Raceway, with starting position, car number in parentheses, driver and chassis-engine. Lineup set by entrant points after qualifying was rained out.

1. (27) Dario Franchitti, Dallara-Honda
2. (11) Tony Kanaan, Dallara-Honda
3. (9) Scott Dixon, Dallara-Honda 
4. (10) Dan Wheldon, Dallara-Honda 
5. (6) Sam Hornish Jr., Dallara-Honda 
6. (3) Helio Castroneves, Dallara-Honda 
7. (8) Scott Sharp, Dallara-Honda
8. (7) Danica Patrick, Dallara-Honda 
9. (4) Vitor Meira, Dallara-Honda 
10. (2) Tomas Scheckter, Dallara-Honda 

Read more & Comment...
06/29/07
industry news

UAG to get Penske nametag
United Auto Group Inc. said it will change its corporate name to Penske Automotive Group Inc. effective July 2.

The Bloomfield Hills-based owner and operator of 311 car dealerships said it will also change its ticker symbol to PAG on the New York Stock Exchange on Monday.

Officials said voting and all other rights related to the company’s common stock will not be affected by the name change. In addition, the change in name will have no impact on the validity or transferability of currently outstanding stock certificates.

“Mr. (Roger) Penske is our chairman, and our company is at a point where we thought it was an appropriate time to change the name and leverage the Penske name as we try and grow our business,” said Tony Pordon, senior vice president with United Auto Group.

Comment
06/29/07
irl

Richmond: Wheldon fastest in opening practice
Dan Wheldon topped Marco Andretti to lead opening practice for Saturday night's Indy Car race in Richmond, VA.  Meanwhile Milka The moving Chicane Duno was a full 13 mph off the pace and should be parked before she hurts someone.

Pos Driver Diff Best Time Best Speed
1 Dan Wheldon (10) ... 15.6902 172.082
2 Marco Andretti (26) 0.0146 15.7048 171.922
3 Sam Hornish Jr (6) 0.0153 15.7055 171.914
4 Tony Kanaan (11) 0.0156 15.7058 171.911
5 Dario Franchitti (27) 0.0641 15.7543 171.382
6 Scott Sharp (8) 0.1111 15.8013 170.872
7 Danica Patrick (7) 0.1723 15.8625 170.213
8 Ed Carpenter (20) 0.2308 15.9210 169.587
9 Scott Dixon (9) 0.2326 15.9228 169.568
10 Vitor Meira (4) 0.2505 15.9407 169.378
11 Tomas Scheckter (2) 0.2513 15.9415 169.369
12 Helio Castroneves (3) 0.2538 15.9440 169.343
13 Buddy Rice (15) 0.2639 15.9541 169.235
14 AJ Foyt IV (22) 0.3903 16.0805 167.905
15 Jeff Simmons (17) 0.4076 16.0978 167.725
16 Kosuke Matsuura (55) 0.4602 16.1504 167.179
17 Sarah Fisher (5) 0.5006 16.1908 166.761
18 Darren Manning (14) 0.5649 16.2551 166.102
19 Milka Duno (23) 1.2102 16.9004 159.760

Comment
06/29/07
cca

Mont-Tremblant: Matos on Atlantic provisional pole
For the third consecutive Cooper Tires Presents The Champ Car Atlantic Championship Powered by Mazda qualifying session, points leader Raphael Matos (#6 ProWorks) added to his championship lead and is guaranteed a front row starting spot for Sunday’s race as part of the Champ Car Mont-Tremblant festivities (ESPN360.com, Live, 11:30 a.m. ET).

Matos turned a best lap at 1:27.718 (107.567 mph) in the Sierra Sierra Enterprises machine to score the point for claiming the provisional pole and extend his lead in the championship. The Brazilian is now 31 points ahead of teammate James Hinchcliffe (#9 NOCO/ProWorks), 174-143. Matos will be looking to hang on for his fourth pole of the season in Saturday’s final qualifying session and will start from the front row for the fourth time in seven races.

Just two-hundredths of a second behind Matos in an extremely competitive qualifying session was Jonathan Bomarito (#23 Miracle Sealants/Konica Minolta/Dynacor), who wound up second on the day. Bomarito’s best lap was 1:27.746 (107.533 mph) and the Californian is looking to top his previous best starting spots of the season which were third-place grid positions in the Las Vegas season-opener and Round 2 at Long Beach. The PR1 Motorsports driver opened the year with three straight top-four results but has finished outside the top-20 spots in two of his last three appearances and is looking to get his season back on track this weekend.

Read more & Comment...
06/29/07
alms

Energy Independence message delivered
Energy Independence was the message at Tavern on the Green Thursday as the American Le Mans Series showcased its relevancy with automotive technology and consumers - one of the Series' cornerstones since its inception.

More than 100 VIPs and media attended the luncheon program at the New York City Central Park landmark, highlighted by remarks from legendary driver/team owner Bobby Rahal, EPIC Executive Director Tom Slunecka and American Le Mans Series President and CEO Scott Atherton. Atherton was introduced by Tom Harrison, CEO of Omnicom Group Diversified Services, the world's largest advertising agency conglomerate.

Atherton led off emphasizing that the reason the American Le Mans Series has become the fastest growing racing series in the world is because of its relevance - the ability of the auto manufacturers participating in the series to transfer technologies from their racing programs directly to the production cars in their showrooms.

"We have been fortunate to have risen so quickly within the ranks of motorsports," said Atherton. "When one considers that 10 years ago, sports car racing in North America was truly in the doldrums, it is a real testament to Dr. Don Panoz and his vision that today we stand here as one of the fastest growing series in the world."

Read more & Comment...
06/29/07
irl
cc

IRL and Champ Car TV Ratings UPDATE #3 The final TV rating for the Cleveland Champ Car race on CBS was a 0.6/2 share.  This is the first time Champ Car has gone head-to-head with the IRL on network TV and with almost double the viewers watching (1.1/3 share), round one goes to the IRL by a landslide as a result of its focus on the drivers being the most important thing to showcase and promote.

If you could put the ratings they both got together, they'd have a decent start at a 1.7 or so, and the opportunity to build it into the 2's in a fairly short amount of time.  All those sponsor-less entries they subsidize need to go by the wayside, they need sponsors who can build the series. 

06/28/07 The final IRL TV rating on ABC for Iowa was a 1.1. 

06/25/07 The overnight TV rating for the Cleveland Champ Car race on CBS was a 0.7/2 share.  In Columbus, Ohio both races had a local 1.7 overnight rating.  Both races were live in the same time slot.

06/25/07 The overnight TV rating for the Iowa IRL Ethanol Indy 250 race on ABC Sunday was a 1.2/3 share, which is fairly good compared to recent ratings, but will it hold when the finals come in. The CBS overnight rating for the Champ Car race in Cleveland is not yet available.

Comment
06/29/07
gp2

Glock wins GP2 pole at Magny Cours
Timo Glock has claimed pole position for tomorrow's first race by just one tenth of a second from teammate Andi Zuber and Bruno Senna in a frantic qualifying session at the Circuit Magny Cours.

The German's late charge to set a lap of 1:21.895 stole the top spot from Zuber, who had been fast throughout the session and had looked comfortable at the top of the table, and helped claim iSport's second 1-2 in qualifying this year, following on from their equal effort in Barcelona.

The session started with a bang, literally, when Vitaly Petrov and Luca Filippi came together at the Adelaide hairpin on their outlap. Both drivers limped back to the pits, but while Petrov was soon back on track after the misunderstanding the Italian was less lucky, having suffered serious suspension problems on his right front. While he managed to get back out in the latter stages of the session, he was unable to push hard and finished 16th, which will almost guarantee that he loses his current second position in the championship standings.

Read more & Comment...
06/29/07
irl

Another IRL driver arrested for DUI UPDATE #3 Foyt has been cleared of a driving-under-the-influence charge stemming from a Dec. 10 traffic violation in Mecklenburg County, N.C. But how do you get cleared if you failed the Breathalyzer test?

03/13/07 Interestingly AJ Foyt IV has been removed from the list of drivers on the IRL's own website.  Not sure if it's a mistake or whether there is still more to this story to be told.  The Vision Racing website still lists Foyt IV as one of their drivers.

03/07/07 A.J. Foyt IV will keep his Indy-car ride with Vision Racing while a charge of driving under the influence is being settled, his employer said.  "Based on what I know at this time, his status as a driver of the team is not affected pending disposition of the matter," Vision co-owner Tony George said Tuesday in an e-mail to The Star

03/05/07 Like he doesn't crash enough already, it seems IRL driver AJ Foyt IV was recently arrested in Mechlenburg County, North Carolina for driving while intoxicated.  In most states you lose your drivers license if caught driving drunk, so without a valid drivers license does that make him eligible to be a race car driver?  He apparently paid a $1,000 bond to get out of jail.  We wonder if grandfather AJ Foyt slapped him silly when he found out.

Comment
06/29/07
cc

Mont-Tremblant: French sweep of opening practice
It's a French sweep in Mont-Tremblant, Quebec as Bourdais, Pagenaud and Gommendy claim the top three spots in the first Champ Car practice. Although unofficial until qualifying, the track record has been smashed by all the drivers. Qualifying gets underway at 2:15pm local/ET.

Pos Driver # Lap Time Mph Behind Leader
1 S. Bourdais 1 1:17.339 122.003 
2 S. Pagenaud 15 1:17.545 121.679 0.206
3 T. Gommendy 22 1:17.747 121.363 0.408
4 J. Wilson 9 1:17.809 121.266 0.470
5 R. Doornbos 14 1:17.840 121.218 0.501
6 N. Jani 21 1:17.938 121.065 0.599
7 G. Rahal 2 1:18.006 120.960 0.667
8 W. Power 5 1:18.034 120.917 0.695
9 D. Clarke 4 1:18.060 120.876 0.721
10 P. Tracy 3 1:18.110 120.799 0.771
11 A. Tagliani 8 1:18.128 120.771 0.789
12 J. Heylen 34 1:18.946 119.520 1.607
13 O. Servia 7 1:19.099 119.288 1.760
14 B. Junqueira 19 1:19.215 119.114 1.876
15 R. Dalziel 28 1:19.638 118.481 2.299
16 K. Legge 11 1:20.223 117.617 2.884
17 A. Figge 29 1:20.232 117.604 2.893

Comment
06/29/07
motogp

Vermeulen takes MotoGP pole in wet
Rizla Suzuki’s wet specialist Chris Vermeulen took his first pole position of the current season in a rain-soaked Friday afternoon MotoGP qualifying session at the A-Style TT Assen today, lapping less than one tenth of a second quicker than compatriot Casey Stoner who will start second on the grid.

Vermeulen took two pole positions in his first full MotoGP season last year, but this is his first appearance on the front row in 2007 and the 25 year-old Australian is likely to be hoping for more rain tomorrow having recently demonstrated his wet riding skills at Le Mans and Donington.

The Suzuki rider clocked a time of 1’48.555s on the 19th of his 25 laps and topped the timesheet by just 0.017s ahead of Ducati Marlboro’s World Championship leader Stoner.

Starting down in 11th on the grid tomorrow is seven-time former World Champion Valentino Rossi who was unable to produce a competitive lap time and may be concerned that Stoner – who qualified nearly two seconds ahead of him and has shown good pace in practice – could build up an early advantage over him in tomorrow’s ninth race of the season.

Read more & Comment...
06/29/07
f1

French GP Practice 2: Massa over Raikkonen
Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen again topped the session speed charts in second practice Friday for the French Grand Prix at Magny Cours.

Massa's time of 1:15.453 was only 0.035 seconds quicker than Raikkonen, who had topped the times in the morning. The Ferrari squad appears to be back on form but the real surprises of the day were Scott Speed and Antonito Liuzzi who were and uncharacteristically 3rd and 5th fastest as both fight to save their jobs.

American Scott Speed was a surprise third quickest for the Toro Rosso team, with his teammate Tonio Liuzzi posting the fifth fastest time of the day as the Italian squad completed their strongest performance of the year.

Pos  Driver        Team               Time        Gap    Laps
 1.  Massa         Ferrari            1:15.453            38
 2.  Raikkonen     Ferrari            1:15.488  + 0.035   28
 3.  Speed         Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:15.773  + 0.320   21
 4.  Hamilton      McLaren-Mercedes   1:15.780  + 0.327   36
 5.  Liuzzi        Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:15.952  + 0.499   40
 6.  Coulthard     Red Bull-Renault   1:15.958  + 0.505   36
 7.  Rosberg       Williams-Toyota    1:16.003  + 0.550   39
 8.  Alonso        McLaren-Mercedes   1:16.049  + 0.596   32
 9.  Davidson      Super Aguri-Honda  1:16.162  + 0.709   25
10.  R.Schumacher  Toyota             1:16.184  + 0.731   41
11.  Fisichella    Renault            1:16.205  + 0.752   43
12.  Kubica        BMW Sauber         1:16.236  + 0.783   42
13.  Wurz          Williams-Toyota    1:16.260  + 0.807   38
14.  Trulli        Toyota             1:16.285  + 0.832   46
15.  Button        Honda              1:16.395  + 0.942   43
16.  Webber        Red Bull-Renault   1:16.562  + 1.109   17
17.  Kovalainen    Renault            1:16.735  + 1.282   40
18.  Barrichello   Honda              1:16.950  + 1.497   47
19.  Heidfeld      BMW Sauber         1:16.968  + 1.515   18
20.  Sato          Super Aguri-Honda  1:17.165  + 1.712   49
21.  Sutil         Spyker-Ferrari     1:18.213  + 2.760   32
22.  Albers        Spyker-Ferrari     1:18.708  + 3.255    9

Comment
06/29/07
f1

Haug plays down bad day for McLaren
(GMM)  Norbert Haug on Friday played down suggestions that Ferrari will necessarily return to dominance at the French grand prix.

F1's Maranello-built cars red-washed the opening day of practice at Magny Cours, while championship leader Lewis Hamilton and his teammate Fernando Alonso dealt with technical faults and off-track moments in their silver McLarens.

"You cannot say that it is all over if we are third or fourth on a single Friday," Mercedes-Benz's competition chief told the German broadcaster Premiere.

Haug added: "We are not totally where we want to be but if I look at our ideal lap times then we are not missing much."

Alonso, however, finished the afternoon session with just the eighth quickest time, notably behind a gaggle of Adrian Newey-penned Toro Rosso and Red Bull cars.

The Spaniard also had two or three spins, but Haug observed: "There were only a few who did not go off the track.

"It is obvious that we have had better Fridays, but to conclude now that it is all going bad for us is completely wrong."

Comment
06/29/07
cca

Matos leads opening practice in Mont-Tremblant
Raphael Matos continued his domination of the Champ Car Atlantic series season by topping opening practice this morning in Beautiful Mont-Tremblant, Canada.  JR Hildebrand continued his strong performance from Cleveland by slotting in 2nd ahead of Matos' Sierra Sierra teammate James Hinchcliffe.

Pos Driver Car# Lap Time Mph Behind Leader
1 Raphael Matos 6 1:28.325 106.828 0.000
2 J.R. Hildebrand 36 1:28.354 106.793 0.029
3 James Hinchcliffe 9 1:28.432 106.699 0.107
4 Franck Perera 11 1:28.546 106.562 0.221
5 Jonathan Bomarito 23 1:28.567 106.536 0.242
6 Giacomo Ricci 18 1:28.758 106.307 0.433
7 Robert Wickens 3 1:28.781 106.279 0.456
8 Matt Lee 44 1:28.842 106.207 0.517
9 Carl Skerlong 24 1:29.174 105.811 0.849
10 Kevin Lacroix 10 1:29.224 105.752 0.899
11 Adrian Carrio 17 1:29.262 105.707 0.937
12 Junior Strous 16 1:29.348 105.605 1.023
13 Alan Sciuto 20 1:29.356 105.596 1.031
14 David Garza 4 1:29.419 105.521 1.094
15 John Edwards 7 1:29.531 105.389 1.206
16 Simona De Silvestro 5 1:29.601 105.307 1.276
17 Tom Sutherland 2 1:29.993 104.848 1.668
18 Richard Heistand 37 1:30.007 104.832 1.682
19 Ryan Lewis 15 1:30.164 104.649 1.839
20 Mike Forest 32 1:30.375 104.405 2.050
21 Justin Sofio 26 1:30.586 104.162 2.261
22 Adrien Herberts 45 1:30.898 103.804 2.573
23 Brian Thienes 19 1:31.184 103.479 2.859
24 Frankie Muniz 13 1:31.658 102.944 3.333

Comment
06/29/07
irl

Silly 100% throttle racing led to Iowa crashes
Any way you measure it, last week's Indy Car race in Iowa was a crash fest. That's what happens when you have 100% throttle racing in identical cars where no one can pass and drivers get desperate. As some drivers said, they didn't pass anyone all weekend, nor were they passed. How silly. This weekend it's Richmond, another 100% throttle endeavor, and added to the problem will be that Milka Moving Chicane Duno will be trying to get out of the way as the real race car drivers lap her repeatedly. Any predictions on what lap Barnhart will black flag her, unless of course she crashes out beforehand?

The Indy Star reports - Last weekend's six-car IndyCar Series crash at Iowa Speedway was caused by A.J. Foyt IV being too aggressive on a restart and Danica Patrick being too passive, the race's chief steward said Thursday.
 
Brian Barnhart gave his assessment of the accident as the series heads to similarly configured Richmond (Va.) International Raceway for Saturday's race (7:30 p.m., ESPN). Practice and qualifying are today.

Barnhart said Foyt restarted too quickly, which would have led to a penalty had the crash not occurred. Barnhart said Patrick's hesitation given the cold-tire concerns contributed to the incident.

Ed Carpenter went to Patrick's inside off the fourth turn and eventual race winner Dario Franchitti went to Foyt's outside to make it four-wide. That's when Patrick's car bobbled and bumped Carpenter's, starting a chain reaction that collected Sam Hornish Jr., Helio Castroneves and Kosuke Matsuura.

"She had been conservative like that on the previous restart," Barnhart said of Patrick. "Anthony certainly jumped the restart, but you could see it didn't take long for Ed and Dario to make it four-wide."

Barnhart said Foyt's penalty would have moved him back a few positions, just as Hornish was on an earlier restart.
Foyt believes he was innocent.

"I wasn't by her (car)," he said Thursday. "I jumped to the outside, but I didn't do anything that anybody else didn't do. It was so hard to pass that if you had the opportunity on a restart, you had to go for it."

Comment
06/29/07
irl

Duno to be given extra practice
Possibly the worse driver to ever strap on a helmet, IRL rookie Milka Duno will be given an extra practice session today at Richmond due to her inexperience.  At her last race she was a moving chicane and parked the car due to handling. 

Comment
06/29/07
f1

Hamilton's McLaren breaks down in France
(GMM)  Ferrari set an ominous pace on Friday as championship leader Lewis Hamilton struck technical trouble during opening practice for the French grand prix.

Under overcast skies, Hamilton's stricken McLaren was hauled onto a flat-bed truck and returned to the pits shortly into the 90-minute session at Magny Cours.

The Briton got back into action later and set only the sixth quickest time, behind the dominant Ferraris, teammate Fernando Alonso, and even Nico Rosberg (Williams) and Red Bull's David Coulthard.

A spokesman for Mercedes-Benz said of Hamilton's problem: "The engine protection system kicked in because the engine was too cool.  We have changed the level of temperature and everything is okay."

Comment
06/29/07
TV News

Weekend USA TV reminders UPDATE The full Sunday TV listing has been added below..

06/28/07
Courtesy of TVRacer.com
Friday
NASCAR Nextel Cup Replay - High Definition Toyota/Save Mart 350
12:00am-2:30am (R) HDNet
Formula 1 Practice France
8:00am-9:30am (L) SPEED
NASCAR Live! New Hampshire
11:00am-12:00pm (L) SPEED
NASCAR Nextel Cup Practice New Hampshire
12:00pm-1:30pm (L) SPEED
NASCAR Busch Final Practice New Hampshire
1:30pm-3:00pm (L) SPEED
NASCAR Nextel Cup Qualifying New Hampshire
3:00pm-4:30pm (L) SPEED
NASCAR Live! New Hampshire
4:30pm-5:00pm (L) SPEED
NASCAR Now
6:30pm-7:00pm ESPN2
Trackside New Hampshire
7:00pm-8:00pm SPEED
Saturday
NASCAR Now
12:00am-12:30am ESPN2
Formula 1 Debrief -United States Grand Prix Indianapolis
12:30am-1:30am SPEED
Inside Grand Prix -French Grand Prix France
7:30am-8:00am SPEED
Formula 1 Qualifying France
8:00am-9:30am (L) SPEED
NASCAR Live! New Hampshire
9:30am-10:00am (L) SPEED
NASCAR Busch Qualifying New Hampshire
10:00am-11:30am (L) SPEED
Champ Car Mont-Tremblant, Quebec - Practice 3
10:15am-11:15am (L) WEBCAST Race Director
NASCAR Nextel Cup Final Practice New Hampshire
11:30am-1:00pm (L) SPEED
NASCAR Live! New Hampshire
1:00pm-1:30pm (L) SPEED
MotoGP World Championship  Dutch TT Grand Prix Assen
2:00pm-3:00pm (SDD) CBS
Champ Car Mont-Tremblant, Quebec - Practice 4
2:00pm-2:20pm (L) WEBCAST Race Director
Champ Car Mont-Tremblant, Quebec - Final Qualifying
2:20pm-3:30pm (L) WEBCAST Race Director
NASCAR Busch Series Camping World 200 presented by RVs.com NH
2:30pm-6:00pm (L) Incl Pre & Post shows ABC
NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series Qualifying Memphis
6:00pm-7:00pm (L) SPEED
NASCAR Performance
7:30pm-8:00pm SPEED
IRL SunTrust Indy Challenge Richmond, VA
7:30pm-9:30pm (L) ESPN
Tradin' Paint New Hampshire
8:00pm-8:30pm SPEED
NASCAR Craftsman Truck  O'Reilly 200 Memphis
8:30pm-11:30pm (L) Incl Preshow SPEED
NHRA Qualifying Norwalk, OH
10:00pm-12:00am ESPN2
Sunday
NASCAR Now
10:00am-11:00am ESPN2
Tradin' Paint New Hampshire
10:30am-11:00am (R) SPEED
NHRA Race Day Norwalk, OH
11:00am-11:30am ESPN2
American Dragster
11:30am-12:00pm ESPN2
Champ Car Atlantic Mont-Tremblant, Quebec
11:30am-12:30pm (L) WEBCAST - ESPN360.com ESPN360
11:30am-12:30pm (L) WEBCAST - Race Director
NASCAR RaceDay New Hampshire
11:30am-1:30pm (L) SPEED
Hot Rod TV
12:00pm-12:30pm ESPN2
Formula 1 French Grand Prix France
1:00pm-3:00pm (SDD) FOX
NASCAR Nextel Cup Lenox Industrial Tools 300 New Hampshire
1:00pm-6:15pm (L) Incl Preshows TNT
Star Mazda Portland
2:00pm-3:00pm (6/9/07) SPEED
Champ Car World Series Mont-Tremblant Quebec
2:00pm-4:00pm (L) ESPN
2:00pm-4:00pm (L) WEBCAST - Race Director
Hot Rod TV
2:30pm-3:00pm ESPN2
GP2 Championship Series France
3:30pm-5:00pm (SDD) SPEED
AMA Motocross Red Bud Track & Trail Buchanan, MI
6:00pm-7:00pm (SDD) SPEED
The SPEED Report
7:00pm-8:00pm SPEED
NASCAR Victory Lane New Hampshire
8:00pm-9:00pm (SDD) SPEED
NHRA Summit Racing Equipment NHRA Nationals Norwalk, OH
8:00pm-11:00pm (SDD) ESPN2
Wind Tunnel with Dave Despain
Featured Interview: Paul Stoddart
9:00pm-10:00pm (L) SPEED

All times listed are ET. For a complete listing of TV Programs, see TVRacer.com.



Comment
06/29/07
f1

New Honda F1 Racing website
The Honda Racing F1 Team has unveiled a bold new look to the HondaRacingF1.com website.

The new site offers fans a truly engaging online experience. Central to it is Honda Racing TV - Formula One's first online TV channel - which will take viewers into the heart of the team with a series of features created specifically for the site, and fronted by journalist and TV presenter Alistair Weaver.

By using a magazine style layout, the site aims to present information in the most visually appealing manner possible. The inclusive nature of the Honda brand is reflected not only in the behind-the-scenes access to the team offered by Honda Racing TV, but also by the ability for fans to download over 2,000 photos from an extensive library of images, as well as the chance to submit their own 'user-generated' movies and photographs for publication on the site. The site will also continue to provide all the news on the team's activities both on and off the track.

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06/29/07
f1

Coulthard tries to justify his worth
David Coulthard believes he would be challenging Lewis Hamilton at the top of the Formula One championship if he had a better car at his disposal. The 36-year-old Scot has picked up four points for Red Bull Racing this season but says he is driving as well as ever.

"It will end at some point, but in the meantime I'm driving every bit as well as Lewis Hamilton - I just don't have the car to show it," said Coulthard.

"I know I can do something remarkable, although it may not be obvious."

Coulthard has raced in 218 Grands Prix in a 14-year career and describes his victory in a McLaren in France in 2000 as a remarkable moment.

That was the last time McLaren won at Magny-Cours, although with Hamilton and Fernando Alonso flying high in the championship that record looks in danger of being eclipsed at the weekend.

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06/29/07
f1

French GP Practice 1: Kimi top as Ferrari dominates
Ferrari ace Kimi Raikkonen relieved some of the pressure on him to revive his form as he lead a dominant Ferrari 1-2 in the first free practice for the French Grand Prix.

Having arrived in France confident of improvements to the F2007 following a promising test at Silverstone, the Finn proved uncatchable at Magny-Cours on Friday morning despite the very best efforts of his team-mate Felipe Massa.

Lewis Hamilton's Magny-Cours weekend on the other hand got off to the worst possible start when the engine protection system on his McLaren-Mercedes switched itself off, stranding him out on the track on only his third lap.

It took the team more than half an hour to get the car back to the pits and the world championship leader back out on track.

Fernando Alonso was third fastest, but some 0.772s slower than Raikkonen's Ferrari.

Results

Pos  Driver        Team                Time     Behind    Laps
 1.  Raikkonen     Ferrari             1:15.382            22
 2.  Massa         Ferrari             1:15.447  + 0.065   22
 3.  Alonso        McLaren-Mercedes    1:16.154  + 0.772   19
 4.  Rosberg       Williams-Toyota     1:16.214  + 0.832   24
 5.  Coulthard     Red Bull-Renault    1:16.268  + 0.886   24
 6.  Hamilton      McLaren-Mercedes    1:16.277  + 0.895   20
 7.  Heidfeld      BMW Sauber          1:16.338  + 0.956   25
 8.  Wurz          Williams-Toyota     1:16.407  + 1.025   23
 9.  Kubica        BMW Sauber          1:16.441  + 1.059   19
10.  Trulli        Toyota              1:16.603  + 1.221   26
11.  Liuzzi        Toro Rosso-Ferrari  1:16.895  + 1.513   32
12.  Sato          Super Aguri-Honda   1:16.967  + 1.585   22
13.  Barrichello   Honda               1:16.990  + 1.608   25
14.  Button        Honda               1:17.047  + 1.665   24
15.  Speed         Toro Rosso-Ferrari  1:17.103  + 1.721   33
16.  Davidson      Super Aguri-Honda   1:17.166  + 1.784   26
17.  R.Schumacher  Toyota              1:17.168  + 1.786   26
18.  Fisichella    Renault             1:17.226  + 1.844   20
19.  Kovalainen    Renault             1:17.348  + 1.966   21
20.  Webber        Red Bull-Renault    1:17.435  + 2.053   26
21.  Albers        Spyker-Ferrari      1:18.178  + 2.796   28
22.  Sutil         Spyker-Ferrari      1:18.419  + 3.037   15

Comment
06/29/07
f1

F1 quiz
1. Which driver set the fastest race lap for five straight years at the French Grand Prix at Magny-Cours?

a. David Coulthard
b. Mika Hakkinen
c. Damon Hill
d. Michael Schumacher
e. Jacques Villeneuve

2. Stirling Moss took pole position for four straight years at the British Grand Prix. Which driver later repeated this feat?

a. Jim Clark
b. Alain Prost
c. Ayrton Senna
d. Michael Schumacher
e. Jackie Stewart

3. All of these circuits have hosted the French Grand Prix. Which one ran on country roads?

a. Bugatti Le Mans
b. Clermont-Ferrand-Charade
c. Dijon-Prenois
d. Le Castellet
e. Rouen Les Essarts

4. Which of the following corner names belongs not to Silverstone, but rather to Brands Hatch, where the British Grand Prix has also been held?

a. Beckets
b. Copse
c. Druids
d. Maggots
e. Stowe

5. Fernando Alonso, René Arnoux and Alain Prost have given Renault four of its five wins at the French Grand Prix. Who gave the French constructor its other victory?

a. Jean-Pierre Beltoise
b. Giancarlo Fisichella
c. Jean-Pierre Jabouille
d. Patrick Tambay
e. Jarno Trulli

6. Which of the following British drivers never won the British Grand Prix?

a. Jim Clark
b. Graham Hill
c. Nigel Mansell
d. Sterling Moss
e. Jackie Stewart

 

Answers: 1) a; 2) a; 3) e; 4) c; 5) c; 6) b

Comment
06/29/07
f1

Latest F1 News in brief
  • Hamilton feats not special - Piquet Jr
  • Montagny rues Ralf's Toyota struggle
  • Alonso turns heat onto McLaren chiefs
  • News briefs from Magny Cours
  • Press slams DC for Hamilton comparison
  • Red Bull build McLaren-like F1 simulator

Hamilton feats not special - Piquet Jr
(GMM) F1's rookie championship leader Lewis Hamilton is doing nothing that any good graduate from the GP2 series could not also achieve.

That is the belief of Renault test driver Nelson Piquet Jr, who was McLaren driver Hamilton's closest rival for the GP2 crown last year.

Also 22, Piquet Jr thinks his Renault colleague Heikki Kovalainen would also be shining at the wheel of Hamilton's race-winning MP4-22 -- and vice versa.

"What Hamilton is doing is good for the drivers who are coming up from GP2," Brazilian Piquet is quoted as admitting by the newspaper Globo Esporte.

He added: "But if Lewis was in the place of Kovalainen he would be doing the same job (as the Finn) -- an error here, another one there.

"He would be trying his best with a car that is not the quickest and pushing it over the limit to get better results.

"It is much, much simpler to drive a single-seater that is the fastest in the field and capable of being always first or second.

"(Nico) Rosberg is another good driver who hasn't yet had a good enough car."

Piquet insists that there is no "secret" to Hamilton's success, which has so far featured two rookie wins from pole this month.

"He is fast and the car is a lot faster than any other car," Nelsinho explained. "It also does not break down.

"If this continues to be the case, of course he can finish every race in the podium. There is no secret to it."

Montagny rues Ralf's Toyota struggle
(GMM) Test driver Franck Montagny says Toyota colleague Ralf Schumacher's problems this year have also hurt him.

The Frenchman explained at Magny Cours that because racer Schumacher is struggling with the TF107, most of the private testing miles have been assigned to Ralf.

"We only have one car, so unfortunately for me all of my planned days have been taken away," Montagny said on Thursday.

"That's the deal; when you sign the contract you know it can be like this. You hope it's not, but there is the possibility," Montagny, who spent all week at Silverstone last week despite not actually driving the F1 car, added.

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06/28/07
industry news

Video: Convertible car crash test
Some convertibles are safer than regular vehicles, according to a crash test conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Among the ten mid-sized convertible models tested, the agency ranked the Saab 9-3 and Volvo C70 as the safest. Automakers from Saab say they created a safer vehicle by reinforcing the windshield header rail, A-pillars and making the door sills wider and larger than in a regular sedan. This is the first convertible safety test of its kind.

Comment
06/28/07
industry news

Bondurant named the Official High Performance Driving School of GM
In an exclusive agreement, General Motors named the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving the "Official High Performance Driving School of GM."

The announcement comes as part of a three-year renewal contract between GM and Bondurant.  GM will provide a fleet of new GM vehicles for use by students and instructors.  Vehicles include 2007 and 2008 Corvettes, Corvette Z-06's, Cadillac CTS's, CTS-V's and Pontiac Solstices.  GM will continue to update the fleet and supply new year models in 2009.  As part of the agreement Bondurant will provide branding exposure, cross marketing, and class discounts for GM and GM employees.

"GM is proud to continue its partnership as the exclusive automobile sponsor of the 'Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving' and is looking forward to continued strengthening of this relationship," said Sean Finegan, Corporate Event Vehicle Manager, Marketing Services, GM. 

"Our long term relationship with General Motors continues to bring new and exciting opportunities for Bondurant and GM.  We are thrilled to have the opportunity to showcase these remarkable cars through our high performance driving classes," said Bob Bondurant, CEO and Owner of Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving.

The agreement between GM and Bondurant creates a new awareness and experience for consumers, sponsors, and partners.  This designation showcases the strengths of each brand and quality of each product.  Students experience the excitement of training in these quality vehicles backed by the confidence of GM engineering and support.

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06/28/07
cc

Little room for mistakes at Mont-Tremblant
A new mountain course on the Champ Car circuit will leave little room for mistakes.

"It's a track where taking chances is really rewarded, but that's a tough game because there aren't many spare chassis around," three-time series champion Sebastien Bourdais said Thursday. "It is a place where if you make a small mistake it can have disastrous consequences on the car, and maybe on you."

The Champ Cars were bumped off Gilles Villeneuve circuit, the Formula One track in Montreal, by the arrival of a NASCAR Busch Series race this summer, but found a new home in the Laurentian mountains a 90-minute drive north.

Qualifying at the picturesque, 2.65-mile track ringed by tree-covered hills begins Friday, with a second qualifying on Saturday and the race on Sunday.

It is the first of three consecutive events in Canada, with the Toronto race a week later and Edmonton on July 22.

The Mont-Tremblant Circuit couldn't be more different than Montreal, where hard braking and quick accelerations are key to negotiating long straightaways leading into abrupt turns and chicanes on a completely flat surface.

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06/28/07
industry news

GM sells Allison Transmission for $5.6B
Shares of General Motors Corp. hit a two-year high Thursday after the automaker said it had agreed to sell its Allison Transmission commercial and military business to an investment conglomerate and a private equity firm.

The deal adds funds to GM's coffers as it gears up for crucial contract negotiations with unionized workers, although it also means losing a profitable division.

GM shares rose 74 cents, or 2 percent, to $38.15 Thursday after climbing as high as $38.66.

The sale to Onex Corp. and The Carlyle Group includes seven manufacturing plants in Indianapolis and its global distribution network and sales offices. A production facility in Baltimore, which makes conventional and hybrid transmissions for pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles, will remain with GM.

The Detroit automaker said the deal, expected to close as early as the third quarter of 2007 pending union and regulatory approval, is part of an effort to raise money and focus on its core business. It said in January it was considering a sale of Allison.

"This is another important step to strengthen our liquidity and provide resources to support our heavy investments in new products and technology," GM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Rick Wagoner said in Thursday's statement. "At the same time, this sale will position Allison for growth with strong partners in Carlyle and Onex, which have well-established track records of working effectively with their management teams, unions and employees."

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06/28/07
nascar

NASCAR TV ratings continue to plummet UPDATE The NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Infineon Raceway was the highest-rated televised sporting event last weekend nationwide, but still dropped from last year.   The event earned a 4.0 rating on TNT, down 12% from last year on FOX (5.1) and down 30% from two years ago (5.7 rating).

06/26/07 The overnight USA TV rating for Sunday's Toyota/Save Mart 300 on TNT was a 3.7 down 27% from last year's race on FOX.

Comment
06/28/07
nascar

Letarte and Knaus on their replacements
STEVE LETARTE, CREW CHIEF OF THE NO. 24 HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS CHEVROLET: (ON THE PENALTIES IMPOSED BY NASCAR.) "It's been a great season so far and we have a really strong, championship-caliber team in place. The penalties are unfortunate and severe, but we'll put the situation behind us and focus on winning a fifth championship for the No. 24 team."

LETARTE: (ON INTERIM CREW CHIEF JEFF MEENDERING.) "Jeff is my go-to guy. We have similar backgrounds and we've both been here (with Hendrick Motorsports) a long time. This is a tough pill to swallow for me, but he'll do a great job leading the team and keeping things moving in a positive direction. We'll rally and Jeff will get more support from the organization than you can imagine."

CHAD KNAUS, CREW CHIEF OF THE NO. 48 HENDRICK MOTORSPORTS CHEVROLET: (ON THE PENALTIES IMPOSED BY NASCAR.) "It's definitely disappointing, but we have a very capable and committed team. For whatever reason, we seem to thrive on adversity. We've overcome challenges in the past and I know we'll get through this as well. I didn't feel like we were outside the box in Sonoma, but that's NASCAR's call and they made it."

KNAUS: (ON INTERIM CREW CHIEF RON MALEC.) "Ron is the only car chief I've ever had on the No. 48 team. He knows the guys better than anyone and they all have a ton of respect for him and what he's accomplished. Ron has been our backbone from the beginning and he'll do a terrific job. It's not the way I wanted to see him get an opportunity, but he's ready and more than capable of getting it done. I'm grateful to have talented guys like Ron and Lance (McGrew) available. It just goes to show how deep this organization is."

Comment
06/28/07
f1

French GP: Thursday Press Conference

Fernando Alonso
(McLaren)
Giancarlo Fisichella (Renault)
Nick Heidfeld (BMW Sauber)
Franck Montagny (Toyota)
Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari)

Q: Giancarlo, do you feel encouraged after the test at Silverstone last week?

Giancarlo Fisichella: First of all, I wasn't there. But it was a good test for us. I think we made another step forward. We've got a new floor and new rear suspension. You know, it's a small step which is quite encouraging for this weekend.

Q: You've only had two sixth places here which suggests it is not one of your favourite or best circuits.

Giancarlo Fisichella: Yeah, unfortunately over the last couple of years I was a little bit unlucky, especially two years ago when I stalled the engine in the pit stop. There was a possibility to get on the podium there. But yes, in the past it hasn't been good for me, but usually in the qualifying session I was close to my team-mate or in the first few rows. It's going to be alright.

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06/28/07
cc
irl

Andretti again calls for merger
John Korobanik, CanWest News Service

EDMONTON - A burying of the sword and a reunion between the Champ Car World Series and the Indy Racing League would be a win-win situation for everyone involved, says legendary race car driver Mario Andretti.

The former four-time Championship Auto Racing Teams champion, who will act as the Grand Marshal for the Edmonton Champ Car race on July 22, said the two sides have got to get back together for the good of the sport.

"There's no other way," Andretti said. "Neither side can really prosper to the level they deserve by themselves. They need all the assets together, to go back to the way it used to be with open wheel racing in North America. There would be no losers, it would be all winners. This has to happen and it should be sooner than later.

"Edmonton would be a bigger event if you had everyone participating."

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06/28/07
nascar

Hendrick Motorsports will not appeal penalties
Car owner Rick Hendrick confirmed today that the sanctions levied by NASCAR on Tuesday against the #24 and #48 Nextel Cup Series teams will not be appealed by Hendrick Motorsports. "The penalties are excessive," Hendrick reiterated. "But we're not going to put time and resources into issuing an appeal. Instead, we will direct that energy into our internal processes to make sure we have full confidence that our cars will meet standards when presented for inspection each week. We've said from the beginning that this would be a learning process (with the Car of Tomorrow) and there would be a lot of give and take between NASCAR and the teams to figure it out. That doesn't seem to be the case now, and I don't think it's the right direction to go."

#24 car chief Jeff Meendering and #48 car chief Ron Malec have been named interim crew chiefs for their respective teams beginning with Sunday's Nextel Cup event at New Hampshire International Speedway. "In Jeff and Ron, we have two guys who know their teams inside and out," Hendrick said. "They both have been here a long time, they both know the pressures involved and they both have the full support of our entire organization. We don't expect to miss a beat." Crew chiefs Steve Letarte and Chad Knaus will resume at-track duties for their respective teams at the Aug. 19 Nextel Cup Series event at Michigan International Speedway. Hendrick Motorsports PR

Comment
06/28/07
irl

Watkins Glen gets sponsor for IndyCar race
Camping World Inc., a marketer and retailer of recreational vehicles and outdoor camping equipment, has signed a four-year contract with Watkins Glen International to be the title sponsor of the track's annual IndyCar Series race, WGI announced Wednesday.

The Camping World Watkins Glen Grand Prix will start at 3:30 p.m. July 8. The partnership extends through the 2010 racing season.

"We are honored to add Watkins Glen to our outstanding list of racetrack sponsors," Marcus Lemonis, president and chief operating officer of Camping World, said in a press release.

"WGI has a very large and loyal RVing fan base, not only during our IndyCar Series and NASCAR race weekends but throughout the entire season," WGI President Craig Rust said in the release.

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06/28/07
f1

Coulthard slams Ralf over Indy incident
(GMM) David Coulthard has slammed fellow F1 veteran Ralf Schumacher following their first-corner clash at the US grand prix two weeks ago.

Red Bull's Scottish driver said he was "irritated" after the German refused to publicly accept the blame for punting him out of the race at Indy.

"He apologized (to me) and said he wasn't sure but he maybe hadn't got his tires or brakes up to temperature and he'd locked up," Coulthard wrote in his column for ITV.

But Coulthard claims that Toyota's Schumacher then told the media that he wasn't sure who was to blame.

He said: "It hacks me off when people aren't man enough to say the same thing to your face as they say when you're not there."

Comment
06/28/07
f1

Kubica gets thumbs-up to race
(GMM)  BMW's Robert Kubica on Thursday was passed fit to return to the wheel of his formula one car for the French grand prix.

The Pole sat out the Indianapolis round two weeks ago following his 72-G shunt in Montreal a few days earlier.

"I'm looking forward to this race and happy that I missed only Indianapolis," he said at the Magny Cours circuit after emerging from the medical centre where he underwent a fitness check and giving reporters the thumbs-up.

BMW-Sauber team principal Mario Theissen added: "We are all happy that Robert can sit in the car again."

Comment
06/28/07
motogp

Assen Thursday: Stoner fastest again
Casey Stoner remained on top in the second Thursday practice session at Assen ahead of Randy de Puniet by 0.212 seconds.  American Nicky Hayden again had the third fastest time, just under three-tenths of a second slower than Stoner.   Assen is a track the American likes very much, and with good reason – the 4.555km (2.830-mile) circuit being the scene of Hayden’s dramatic last-gasp win in 2006.

Afternoon Results

Pos  Rider             Bike      Time      Behind
 1.  Casey Stoner      Ducati    1:37.828
 2.  Randy de Puniet   Kawasaki  1:38.040  + 0.212
 3.  Nicky Hayden      Honda     1:38.114  + 0.286
 4.  Valentino Rossi   Yamaha    1:38.148  + 0.320
 5.  Dani Pedrosa      Honda     1:38.221  + 0.393
 6.  Makoto Tamada     Yamaha    1:38.256  + 0.428
 7.  Colin Edwards     Yamaha    1:38.341  + 0.513
 8.  John Hopkins      Suzuki    1:38.436  + 0.608
 9.  Shinya Nakano     Honda     1:38.444  + 0.616
10.  Alex Barros       Ducati    1:38.485  + 0.657
11.  Loris Capirossi   Ducati    1:38.600  + 0.772
12.  Sylvain Guintoli  Yamaha    1:38.650  + 0.822
13.  Carlos Checa      Honda     1:38.733  + 0.905
14.  Alex Hofmann      Ducati    1:38.846  + 1.018
15.  Chris Vermeulen   Suzuki    1:39.152  + 1.324
16.  Marco Melandri    Honda     1:39.259  + 1.431
17.  Anthony West      Kawasaki  1:39.751  + 1.923
18.  Kurtis Roberts    KR        1:40.835  + 3.007

Comment
06/28/07
formula bmw

Formula BMW Europe to launch in 2008
Munich/Bracknell - BMW is taking its junior talent promotion scheme to a new level. As from season 2008, the Formula BMW Germany and Formula BMW UK championships will merge to create Formula BMW Europe. The new championship will mainly be staged on the undercard of the FIA Formula One World Championship.

"I am delighted to see Formula BMW substantially staking out its presence within the framework of the FIA Formula One World Championship and establishing itself as a strong and permanent feature of numerous Formula One race weekends. For talented young drivers, Formula BMW represents the first step towards a professional motor sport career that can take them via GP2 all the way up to Formula One. A current tally of six team and test drivers in the 2007 Formula One season bears impressive testimony of that", says Bernie Ecclestone.

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06/28/07
motogp

Assen Thursday: Stoner fastest, Elias breaks leg
Ducati Marlboro’s Casey Stoner gained an early psychological advantage this morning in the first MotoGP practice session of the A-Style TT Assen, as he topped the timesheet by 0.046s ahead of title rival Valentino Rossi.

Meanwhile, Toni Elias suffered a crash which broke his left femur, as he slid off track on his 14th lap, with his Honda RC212V landing on his leg as he fell. The Catalan Honda Gresini rider was transferred to hospital for examination and treatment after the incident, which mirrors the first session accident at Assen last year that also saw him miss the 2006 Dutch TT. Looking to maintain or extend his surprise 26 point World Championship lead at the ninth round of the season this weekend Stoner made a good start as he recorded the session’s quickest time of 1’38.323s on the 15th of his 23 laps.

Second fastest participant Rossi aims to bounce back from his Donington disappointment and prevent Stoner from taking a sixth victory of the year - and the Italian was in a determined mood as he set his own best lap on the last of his 29 attempts this morning.

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06/28/07
f1

Latest F1 news in brief
  • Bernie biography out soon
  • Money not my motivation - Ralf S.
  • Hamilton plays down French prospects
  • McLaren has not chosen champion - Haug
  • Webber would rather see Alonso win title
  • F1 stars face drug tests in France
  • 'I'm no ostrich' says Albers

Bernie biography out soon
(GMM) The inside story on Bernie Ecclestone will be released later this year, publishers Ebury Press have announced.

'Bernie' is written by Susan Watkins, the wife of the 76-year-old's personal friend and former long-time traveling doctor Prof. Sid Watkins.

It will reveal "the true struggle behind his fortune, the background to his relationships with politics and what reality, if any, there is to his detractor's accusations", the publishers said.

On the authorized biography's cover, meanwhile, the diminutive billionaire is quoted as recalling his request to the author that: "It must be open and it must be honest."

Money not my motivation - Ralf S.
(GMM) Ralf Schumacher has hinted that he may be prepared to take a pay-cut in 2008.

The end of the German's $20m a-year contract with Toyota this season has coincided with a conspicuous drop in form, but 31-year-old Schumacher insists to the magazine Sport Auto that "money is not my motivation".

"Fortunately I don't have to worry about that so much any more," Ralf said, adding that he is "100 per cent sure" that he will still be on the grid in 2008.

"My motivation is that I still believe I have something to offer. And I would not be content with my career if it were to end now."

He denied former boss Sir Frank Williams' recent claim that he has lost his passion for racing by saying: "It is not my style to just cruise to the end of the season and collect my pension."

Schumacher said hiring more "experienced people" would help Toyota's plight but played down suggestions that the Japanese giant's now six-year struggle means that its formula one foray has failed.

He said: "Even teams like Ferrari, McLaren and Renault have gone through their difficult times. Look at Renault -- they are the world champion and doing it tough this season.

"Those teams have been there forever and we are in our sixth year against them," Ralf added.

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06/27/07
nascar

Harvick announces primary sponsorship for '08
Kevin Harvick Inc. (KHI) announced today that they have extended their partnership with Camping World. The Bowling Green, Ky. based company will be the primary sponsor on the No. 33 NASCAR Truck Series entry, driven by two-time Truck Series champion Ron Hornaday, for the 2008 season.

“It is always important to have sponsors that are behind your programs, and Camping World has supported KHI this season in both the Truck and Busch Series,” said Kevin Harvick, co-owner of KHI. “They share the same passion and dedication for this sport that we do and I can't think of a better partner for Ron Hornaday and the No. 33 Truck Series team. DeLana and I are thrilled they have decided to continue their partnership with KHI in 2008.”

So far this season Ron Hornaday has amassed two wins (Charlotte and Dover) in the Truck Series, extending his career total, along with the all-time series record for victories to 31. Not only was Dover (Del.) his second win of the season, but it also represented a second milestone win in his career as the Truck Series celebrated its 300th race on June 1, 2007. Hornaday scored his first milestone win at the 100th Truck Series race at Evergreen Speedway in Monroe, Washington on April 3, 1999.

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06/27/07
cc

Champ Car announces Triple Crown
Champ Car drivers and teammates Will Power and Simon Pagenaud announced today in the “Great White North” that the open-wheel racing series’ nine teams will compete in a first-ever team showdown during the upcoming Champ Car World Series three-event July swing through Canada.

Officially dubbed the “Champ Car Canadian Triple Crown,” the team competition will pit teams against each other over the three successive Canadian races, beginning this week in Mont-Tremblant (July 1), continuing next week in Toronto (July 8) and concluding on July 22 in Edmonton. The standings for the Triple Crown will be based on the combined average finish for each team.

“A Champ Car Triple Crown competition in Canada will be a fun way to draw extra attention to this country’s three great events, and of course as drivers we’re all for anything that involves more competition against each other,” said Power, who joined Team Australia teammate Pagenaud this morning in both Montreal and Mont-Tremblant to announce the competition to the media. “I don’t know about the other drivers, but I know that I will be quite happy if Simon finishes exactly one spot behind me in all three races, and we share the podium each and every time.”

Read more & Comment...
06/27/07
racing news

Quotes of the Week UPDATE #2
MARCO ANDRETTI, IRL IndyCar driver
"All weekend, I haven't truly been passed and I haven't passed anybody," Andretti said after the Iowa race. "It's tough. If it was up to me, I would want less downforce, and that would make it not just easy flat out." (Marco Andretti talking about IRL's 100% throttle no talent required race at Iowa. In fact most IndyCar races are 100% throttle no talent required endeavors.)

06/25/07
JUAN MONTOYA, NASCAR driver
"This is as big as any victory," Montoya said after winning his first Nextel Cup race Sunday. "You could say it's as big as winning the Indy 500 or winning Long Beach. For me winning Long Beach (CART) was probably cooler than winning the Indy 500 because it was my first-ever big race.  Winning here is my first-ever big race in stock cars. They're all right up there. I kinda think this is my favorite. It's amazing. We worked hard for it and not only me, but the whole team deserves this."

06/24/07
MARCO ANDRETTI, IRL driver
I've got to thank Dario Franchitti for the setup today. The guy is unbelievable at setting up the car. His cars finished 1-2 (In Iowa).

WILL POWER, Champ Car driver
"He (Paul Tracy) hit everything . . . then he hit the lottery," said Will Power, who seemed to have the fastest car in the field but blew a front tire late in the 89-lap race and had to pit.  We had it," Power said of his potential first win of the season after leading a race-high 32 laps. "Unfortunately, a flat tire - I think a valve stem came out - did us in. We had the fuel, we were quicker than the guys up front. We could have taken the points lead."

PAUL TRACY, Champ Car driver
I'm still kind of in shock with how the race went. I got off to a really bad start, got into the mix with Robert and Graham fighting. They both kind of ran wide in turn three. Graham was kind of way out in the dusty part of the track. When he turned to change directions, go the other way, he had to come to a stop in the middle of a corner without kind of half spinning out. I was coming pretty hard. I knew he was going to have to slow down at the apex, but I thought I could kind of cross under him. He basically parked the car right in front of me to avoid spinning out. I ended up running into him. We both went out in the grass.

LARRY McREYNOLDS on Jeff Gordon’s No. 24 car failing qualifying inspection prior to the Friday practice:
As crew chiefs, we always tended to push the envelope a little harder at a road course.  We felt like NASCAR maybe wouldn’t go over things quite as closely at a road course.  But I look at (Jeff Gordon’s crew chief) Steve Letarte, Jeff Gordon could come out here in a covered wagon and run good, so why does he want to push the envelope on something that he knows that’s going to be marginal, especially as closely as they’re monitoring the Car of Tomorrow?

WALLY DALLENBACH on Juan Pablo Montoya:  
Juan Pablo Montoya’s got the ability, he’s got a good race car and if he uses his head, I think he’ll be a top-three race car driver.  But that’s the key, he’s got to use his head.

JIMMIE JOHNSON on how the penalty of starting at the back due to cheating has affected the Hendricks Motorsports team: 
It’s had a big affect on our team.  On the No. 24 (and No.) 48 and I think all the way through the garage area.  We all have a much better understanding now of how serious NASCAR is with these cars and the bodies.  It doesn’t matter if the templates fit or not, there’s areas that they don’t want you to touch and now that message is crystal clear to us.

GRAHAM RAHAL, Rookie Champ Car driver
I can honestly say our finishing position wasn’t for a lack of effort,” said Rahal.  “The Medi | Zone car was one of the quickest cars out there.  I feel I drove a really good race.  We were solid and if we hadn’t had the problem at the beginning of the race we would have been in really good shape.  It was disappointing at the start because this guy Doornbos was blocking everybody.  I went down the inside of Doornbos into Turn 1 and I got an okay launch out of the corner – not great but enough to hold him off.  I came through Turn 3 and he came out and tried to put me in the grass.  I guess when he did that I had to check up and (Paul) Tracy just punted me.  I haven’t seen a reply so I don’t know exactly.  All I know is that I got thrown up in the air, and it’s a good thing this car is strong because otherwise we would have been done for the day.  I’m happy that we were competitive after that.  We were fast and we had a good car.

Comment
06/27/07
nascar

NASCAR suspends Musgrave
NASCAR has suspended Craftsman Truck Series driver Ted Musgrave for one race for driving his battered truck into the truck driven by Kelly Bires while on the track under caution during the June 22 event at the Milwaukee Mile.

Musgrave was angry at Bires for the accident that heavily damaged their two trucks.
 
The 2005 series champion also was penalized 50 points, fined $10,000 and placed on probation through the end of the year. The team was also penalized 50 points.

Mike Hillman Sr., general manager of Germain Racing, says the team understands and supports NASCAR's decision. The team will not appeal, and Musgrave will miss the race this weekend at Memphis Motorsports Park, where he will be replaced by Brad Keselowski.

"We regret that the incident happened," Hillman said. "The Team ASE crew has had some excellent races this season, and we know Ted Musgrave still has the fire it takes to win races for us. We look forward to having him back in the Team ASE Tundra in Kentucky."

Comment
06/27/07
f1

Bernie's Biography out this year
Bernie Ecclestone's authorized biography will be published in the autumn of 2007, it was announced today.

The book, written by personal friend Susan Watkins, wife of Dr. Sid Watkins, will be called 'Bernie' and will reveal "the true struggle behind his fortune, the background to his relationships with politics and what reality, if any, there is to his detractor's accusations," according to its publishers, Ebury Press.

Watkins is a writer and historical biographer, and has known Ecclestone for over twenty years because she is married to Professor Sid Watkins, Formula One's former chief doctor and medical advisor.

"It must be the truth, I have nothing to hide," said Ecclestone.

Comment
06/27/07
nascar

Ganassi switches crew chiefs
Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates (CGRFS) announced Wednesday it is making crew changes to its No. 41 Wrigley’s and No. 42 Texaco/Havoline NASCAR Busch Series (NBS) teams. Crew chief Brad Parrott and his crew will move over to work on the No. 41 Dodge with drivers Reed Sorenson, David Stremme, Scott Pruett, Scott Lagasse Jr., and Bryan Clauson, while crew chief Brian Pattie and his team will now work with drivers Juan Pablo Montoya and Kevin Hamlin on the No. 42 Dodge effective this weekend at New Hampshire International Speedway (NHIS). "Since its inception, our Busch Series program has experienced some great accomplishments in a short period of time. We’ve had some highlights this year, as well, but both teams are lacking consistency," said team managing director John Fernandez. "Our Busch program exists to develop our drivers, so we’re hoping this move will get the teams’ performance to where we think it should be right now and to prepare for the up-and-coming racers who will be in those cars later this year and seasons ahead."

Comment
06/27/07
cc

Bridgestone Mont-Tremblant preview
Race Details: Timed event - 1 hour, 45 minutes. Track distance is 2.650 miles (4.264 km).

Television Broadcast: Live - Sunday, July 1, at 2 p.m. EDT on ESPN.

Bridgestone Potenza Tires Supplied:

* 546 primary (black-sidewall) dry-condition slicks; 174 alternate (red-sidewall) dry slicks; and 308 wet-condition (rain) tires.

* Each car receives seven sets of primary tires, two sets of alternates and four sets of rain tires for the race weekend.

* In a normal dry-condition race, each car must use at least one set of primary and one set of alternate Potenzas. The primary and alternate tires' construction is identical, but the alternates possess a tread compound with better grip ("softer"), making them faster but possibly not quite as durable.

* Bridgestone Motorsport engineers elected to bring the same specification of Potenza primary, alternate and wet condition tires that were used at last weekend's race at Burke Lakefront Airport in Cleveland.  The primary tires represent the medium-grip road-course Potenzas available, while the alternate spec is the softer, higher-grip road-course compound.  The wet condition tire is an updated version of the "harder," or more durable of the rain specs.

From Al Speyer, Executive Director, Bridgestone Motorsport: "With temperatures predicted to be quite cool at Mont-Tremblant this weekend, we expect that the Bridgestone Potenzas, both the primary and alternate specs, will offer the combination of durability and grip that drivers will rely on as they learn their way around this new track on the Champ Car World Series schedule.  It is always a bit of an unknown when we go to a track that we haven't raced on in a long time.  But having tested here with several teams this past May, Bridgestone Motorsport is confident that the specs we have chosen will perform very well."

Comment
06/27/07
f1

World Council pushes forward on 2011 F1 changes
The World Motor Sport Council met in Paris on 27 June, 2007. The following decisions were taken:

The WMSC received a report on the status of current discussions* on the FIA Formula One World Championship from 2011. Proposals include:

Engine efficiency
To limit engine power by imposing a maximum energy flow rate. However, there will be few restrictions on the engine cycle, which can include turbo-charging and energy recovery. It is believed that this will lead to a gain of at least 20% in thermal efficiency.

Drag
To allow moving aerodynamic devices, which will reduce drag by over 50% and allow a 40% reduction in the power required to maintain current speeds.

Energy recovery
Energy will be recovered during braking and returned to both front and rear axles when accelerating. The amount of energy returned on each straight will be limited in order to prevent top speeds exceeding the safety criteria for the circuits.

Fuel
The total amount of fuel energy to be consumed during a race will be regulated, encouraging further overall efficiency. The CO2 emitted will be further reduced by the introduction of gasoline which is partly derived from sustainable, non-food bio sources but complies fully with pump fuel legislation.

Overtaking
Formula One cars currently find it very difficult to overtake because of the influence of the car in front. New aerodynamic rules will halve the downforce, and de-sensitize the car to the influence of the wake of the car ahead. It is also proposed to eliminate automatically the downforce deficit of the following car.

Regulations
The best estimates of what these measures will mean in terms of regulations are currently as follows:
• 1.3-1.5 liter, 4-cylinder engine;
• no RPM or boost limit;
• energy flow rate to generate 300kW, including energy recovery from the exhaust;
• 200kW brake energy recovery, front and rear axle;
• 400-600kJ energy return per straight;
• pump-legal bio-fuel;
• FIA specified and supplied undertray and possibly other aerodynamic components;
• 50% 2007 downforce;
• adjustable, regulated wings and cooling;
• automatic downforce adjustment when following another car;
• lap times and top speeds maintained at 2009 levels;
• over 50% reduction in fuel consumed.

Costs
A number of measures to constrain costs are proposed, including:
• standardization of components;
• homologation of components and assemblies;
• material restrictions;
• extended life of assemblies;
• restrictions on personnel and work at races;
• restrictions on the use of certain facilities (eg wind tunnels).
All these measures will be developed into detailed regulations in close collaboration with the teams and manufacturers.

*For full details please refer to http://www.fia.com/sport/Championships/F1/formula_one_2011.html

Comment
06/27/07
nascar

$100M activation around '08 Daytona 500
BRANDWEEK reports Kellogg, Unilever, ConAgra, General Mills, Nabisco and PepsiCo are among the companies that will "activate upward of $100 million in marketing” around the ’08 Daytona 500, the 50th running of the race.  Almost 50 products will appear exclusively at Kroger-owner supermarkets beginning next week with a special 50th anniversary logo.  NASCAR and Kroger both said that this is “the largest single activation in their respective histories.”

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06/27/07
nascar

Sprint to eradicate Nextel name
Sprint is wiping Nextel from its slogan.

After their merger, Sprint Nextel embarked on what analysts said was a disastrous marketing campaign. And problems with Nextel's network prompted an exodus of customers.
 
So now, the Reston company is hoping to reinvent its image around a new tagline -- "Sprint ahead" -- that ignores Nextel. It will also eliminate the Nextel name from the sponsorship of the main NASCAR racing series, one of Nextel's most successful branding campaigns before the merger. Starting next year, the Nextel Cup will be the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

New television commercials, online ads, billboards and movie theater ads will roll out Sunday at a critical time for the company. In addition to trying to improve the reputation of its network, Sprint is attempting to stave off competition from AT&T and Verizon Wireless, which have benefited from Sprint's steady loss of customers.

"This is the most important initiative the company's undertaken since the merger" in 2005, said Michael Nelson, an analyst with the Stanford Group, a New York investment firm. "This is going to be a defining moment in whether they can turn around their business."  More at Washington Post

Comment
06/27/07
cc

Rexall becomes title sponsor of GP of Edmonton
Edmonton, June 27, 2007 -- "This is a great day for Edmonton. Together with Rexall we are going to put on a world-class event for the people of this city and province, as well as millions of racing fans around the world."

With those words, Jim Haskins, President, Grand Prix of Edmonton, announced today that it has signed Rexall/Katz Group, Canada's largest drug store network of companies, as this year's lead sponsor for the premier motorsport competition in the city and the province.

"A Champ Car World Series event like the Grand Prix of Edmonton requires strong support and commitment from the business community, and there isn't a stronger or more committed lead sponsor in Edmonton than Rexall/Katz Group," Haskins said.

Daryl Katz, Chairman of the Edmonton-based Katz Group Inc. said, "When the Grand Prix of Edmonton offered us the lead sponsorship opportunity, we were pleased to accept. It will be a great showcase for our Rexall brand and more importantly, it will be a great showcase for our city."

Steve Johnson, President of Champ Car, said, "The Rexall Grand Prix of Edmonton will continue to grow steadily and strongly in stature and importance with this new alliance. The event has always been one of the strongest in the World Series and an association with a major corporation such as Katz Group is guaranteed to have a significant and highly positive impact on this international autosport series."

Read more & Comment...
06/27/07
gp2

GP2 to continue with Renault and Bridgestone
The GP2 series today announced that it has renewed its agreements with official suppliers Renault (engine) and Bridgestone (tires) to continue for another three years after this season.

The GP2 Series has been powered by Renault engines from the very start, and over the last three years has become an integral part of the "Renault Pyramid" which sees a steady progression from 200bhp Formula Renault, 400bhp World Series, 600bhp GP2 Series, all the way through to the ultimate goal of Formula One.

Just as Renault's involvement in the GP2 Series has been in place from the very beginning, so the work and commitment shown by our partner and tire supplier Bridgestone has been a vital constant in the success of the GP2 Series. As the sole tire supplier not only to the GP2 Series, but also to Formula One, there is no other tire manufacturer better equipped to prepare the finest young drivers in the world for the rigors of life in F1.

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06/27/07
f1

No green light for night Malaysia GP yet
(GMM) Organizers of the Malaysian grand prix are still not ready to commit to staging a night race as early as next year.

Like fellow formula one promoters in Australia, the event in Sepang is negotiating for a new contract beyond 2010, with Bernie Ecclestone lobbying hard to floodlit venues in the southern hemisphere, such as Singapore, to give F1's key European audience a better live timeslot.

The Sepang circuit's Datuk Mokhzani Tun Mahathir, however, told the Malaysian news agency Bernama that officials are "still studying" the night racing concept.

He said: "We have to look at various aspects like the lighting that is suitable for the circuit.

"Safety is paramount in F1 racing (and) more so (for) night racing."

Governing body the FIA conducted its first floodlit tests with the Safety Car at Indianapolis two weeks ago, and more detailed evaluation is expected shortly given that the initial results were positive.

Comment
06/27/07
tv news

New ESPN2 program to feature NASCAR team owner
How do NASCAR fans get inside the technical brain trust of their favorite sport? They ask a former three-time NASCAR champion crew chief to tell them everything they want to know.

Beginning in July, NASCAR team owner Ray Evernham will be the featured host of a new and unique racing program on ESPN2.

Part of the ESPN2 Garage group of motorsports and automotive shows, Race Wizard with Ray Evernham will premiere at 11 a.m. ET Saturday, July 7. The innovative new show will provide racing fans an entertaining look at the intriguing technical aspects and little-known inner-workings of motorsports and racing.

Race Wizard is created for and by NASCAR fans, who will go behind the scenes of the racing world through “person on the street” interviews with one of racing’s brightest minds and most successful team owners.

Read more & Comment...
06/27/07
racing news

SPEED Weekly Top 20 Driver Ranking
 
  • Indy 500 winner Dario Franchitti moves up to No. 2 with second win of the season
  • Joe Gibbs, Richard Childress NASCAR teams take five spots in the Top 10
  • Tough luck at Cleveland bumps Bourdais from No. 2 to No. 12

Updated 6-27-07
Pos.  (LW) Driver (Series)                     Pts
1. (1) Lewis Hamilton (F1)                     9.381
2. (15) Dario Franchitti (IRL)                 8.424
3. (3) Fernando Alonso (F1)                    8.159
4. (7) Denny Hamlin (NASCAR)                   7.785
5. (8) Tony Stewart (NASCAR)                   7.477
6. (17) Kevin Harvick (NASCAR)                 7.427
7. (22) Jeff Burton (NASCAR)                   7.149
8. (19) Clint Bowyer (NASCAR)                  7.095
9. (4) Carl Edwards (NASCAR)                   6.992
10. (10) Felipe Massa (F1)                     6.852
11. (18) Kyle Busch (NASCAR)                   6.699
12. (2) Sebastien Bourdais (CCWS)              6.669
13. (6) Martin Truex Jr. (NASCAR)              6.642
14. (14) Dale Earnhardt Jr. (NASCAR)           6.517
15. (NR) Juan Pablo Montoya (NASCAR)           6.400
16. (5) Jeff Gordon (NASCAR)                   6.224
17. (NR) Greg Biffle (NASCAR)                  6.084
18. (NR) Ryan Newman (NASCAR)                  5.882
19. (13) Casey Mears (NASCAR)                  5.864
20. (21) Justin Wilson (CCWS)                  5.856

Dropped out: Sam Hornish Jr. (IRL), Will Power (CCWS), Tony Kanaan (IRL), Jimmie Johnson (NASCAR), Jamie McMurray (NASCAR)
Provided by STATS Inc.
Current year results, last 10 races, last five races and last race are factored in equally, with an adjustment factor to compensate for the series different scoring systems. In addition, a competition difficulty factor has been included to balance the competitive depth of each series.

Comment
06/27/07
irl

Indy 500 drops to No. 33
As their TV provider ABC and ESPN are supposed to be partners with the IRL. According to this ESPN article the Indy 500, under IRL leadership, is now only the 33rd out of 100 must-see sporting events according to the opinion of this article's author. The continued split in open wheel racing is driving it's greatest asset, the Indy 500, lower and lower in the eyes of the world, an opinion now viewed by many.

Comment
06/27/07
f1

Willis slams Honda for 'nightmare' season
(GMM) A year after leaving the team, Honda's ousted technical director has described the Japanese outfit's 2007 campaign as a "nightmare" caused by bad management.

48-year-old Briton Geoff Willis, who walked out of the Brackley factory last July following a demotion, hit out at the tendency to manage "by committee" after the RA107 failed to race to a single point in the opening grands prix of 2007.

"Oh dear! What should have been a development of the competent 2006 car has turned into a nightmare," he wrote in the magazine F1 Racing.

"It looks as though most of the lessons of 2005-2006 have either been forgotten or ignored, and the development momentum of the last races of 2006 lost."

It is often suggested in the paddock that F1's two Japanese teams - including the Cologne based Toyota - are overly steered from a distance by Tokyo chiefs, with Willis also charging: "(Honda) must start to realize that F1 isn't a place for management by committee, however well intentioned."

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06/27/07
gp2

GP2 series unveils new chassis in France
The GP2 / 08, the car which will form the racing foundation of the second generation of the GP2 Series from 2008-2010, has undergone testing for the first time at Circuit Paul Ricard HTTT in France. Powered by a 4l Renault V8 engine and running on slick Bridgestone Potenza tires, the all new Dallara-designed car ran for 60 laps without complication, under the steady hand of 2006 GP2 Series Vice-Champion and Renault F1 Team test driver, Nelson Piquet Jr.

The GP2 / 08 has been designed to ensure that the fantastic racing which has been the hallmark of the GP2 Series in its first tri-annual generation will continue into the future. Great care has also been made to ensure that the operation of the car remains a genuine challenge for the GP2 Series teams. A number of lessons have been learned in the first three years of the GP2 Series and the GP2 / 08 is the culmination of the combined experience of our Technical and Engineering heads, together with the advice and recommendations of Renault, Bridgestone, Dallara and Mecachrome.

Read more & Comment...
06/27/07
track news

Silverstone owners plan to revamp track alone
Silverstone's owners plan to revamp the British Formula One Grand Prix track with their own means and hope to approve a masterplan by the end of July, Damon Hill said on Tuesday.

The president of the British Racing Drivers' Club, owners of the former World War Two airfield with a contract to host the race to 2009, told reporters however that they would not throw cash at the project just to satisfy Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

"Our view is that the BRDC can afford to develop Silverstone using its own means, so that we don't constantly need to badger government," he said.

"We think we can stand on our own two feet and manage the assets."

Ecclestone has made clear that Silverstone must make improvements or risk losing its place on the calendar, despite its history as host of the first championship grand prix in 1950.

Hill said the new plan would cost the BRDC more than 20 million pounds ($39.98 million), with some land sold to finance the improvements, compared with hundreds of millions spent in places like China or Bahrain.  More at Reuters

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06/27/07
nascar

NASCAR CTS sets date for Awards Banquet
The inaugural season of the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series will end with an Oct. 13 awards banquet, honoring the first series champion. The end of the series’ first season will be held at the Hilton Markham Convention Center in Toronto.

Comment
06/27/07
cc

New Champ Car proving to be very reliable
"The Panoz chassis is doing a good job overall," said Tom Brown, longtime Champ Car engineer working for PKV Racing. "There are still a few tiny fuel bugs to be worked out. It's darn good for a brand-new car. Some chassis have taken several seasons to fix. The Panoz has shown more speed than the Lola."

Comment
06/27/07
f1

Rosberg's engine undamaged at Indy
(GMM) Sam Michael has contradicted reports following the recent US grand prix that said Nico Rosberg had retired from the race with a fiery engine failure.

Williams' FW29 single seaters are this year powered by semi-works Toyota engines; and one did not expire on Indianapolis' road course layout nearly two weeks ago, technical director Michael insisted to Auto Motor und Sport magazine.

The Australian explained that an electrical fire set spilled oil ablaze -- but that the 2.4 liter V8 remains in working order.

"Theoretically we could use it again at Magny Cours," he said, "but since we can change it anyway without penalty we might as well give him a fresh engine (for the French GP)."

The team's post-race investigation also showed that the oil fire melted Rosberg's rear suspension, meaning that he was lucky to escape a Ralf Schumacher-type impact against the Speedway walls.

Sam Michael said of the reliability problems encountered in America: "We now have solid solutions in place."

Comment
06/27/07
f1

F1 news bits on Wednesday
(GMM) Nine heavy JCB machines used to move stricken formula one cars at the recent US grand prix will now be deployed to Iraq. The US government has bought the lifters and will shortly transport them to the war-torn Middle East via Kuwait.

-

Strongly resembling a F1 single seater, the new Dallara-built GP2 car for 2008-2010 was this week revealed and tested for the first time by Renault test driver Nelson Piquet Jr at Paul Ricard in the south of France.

-

BRDC president Damon Hill this week warned at a promotional event in London for the upcoming British prix that organizers cannot rely on the 'Lewis Hamilton factor' to safeguard the race at Silverstone beyond 2009. "We should take his (Bernie Ecclestone's) threats seriously," said the 1996 world champion.

-

Michael Schumacher in Stuttgart late next month will play in a re-enactment of football's World Cup final of 1982 between (West) Germany and Italy. The match will feature many of the original players. Italy won the tournament after beating Germany 3:1 in the final.

-

Giancarlo Fisichella's GP2 team has ousted former Jaguar and Williams driver Antonio Pizzonia ahead of this weekend's race at Magny Cours. The Brazilian scored just one point in his five outings in 2007 and is succeeded by Ulsterman Adam Carroll, who has impressed at the wheel of a two-year old Audi this season in the German (DTM) touring car series.

Comment
06/27/07
f1

Sam Michael slams Nico-for-Kimi rumor
(GMM) Williams' Sam Michael has rubbished speculation that the Grove based team might lose Nico Rosberg to a rival team ahead of the 2008 season.

Rosberg, who turns twenty-two on Wednesday, has impressed so much during his second season on the grid in 2007 that rumors have singled him out as a possible replacement for Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen next year.

According to the paddock gossip, Raikkonen could then wind up at Williams as contractual 'compensation' for the team led by Sir Frank Williams.

But in the German specialist magazine Auto Motor und Sport, technical director Michael is quoted as slamming the speculation as "absolute stupidity".

Backing Sam Michael's dismissal of the paddock theory, Auto Motor und Sport insists that German-born Rosberg is already tied to Williams on a binding contract for 2008.

Additionally, Raikkonen is understood to have a team performance clause in his Ferrari deal, meaning that he might possibly be free to leave the Maranello based team anyway at the end of the year and then be able to select the alternate team of his choice.

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