When the checkered flag dropped at the end of the Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips 400 on June 19, the green flag was waved for Phase 1 of the Michigan International Speedway Track Repaving Project.
After just 30 days, pit road has now been repaved thus completing Phase 1 of the project.
Here are a few highlights from Phase 1 of the track repave:
Drainage A drainage trench was installed below the white line in the turns and on the frontstretch. This stone filled trench will collect water trapped in the existing pavement and reduce the potential for water weeping out of the track surface.
Ford opts to stay with Fusion instead of switching to Mustang in 2013 With NASCAR going to a new version of its Sprint Cup car in 2013, Ford officials had originally expected to switch from the Fusion to the Mustang after a successful roll out in the Nationwide Series.
But they recently switched gears and have opted to continue with the Fusion, which Ford it has raced in Sprint Cup since 2006.
“We decided to have two brands in NASCAR – one in Cup with Fusion and the Mustang in Nationwide,” said Ford’s North American motorsports director Jamie Allison in a phone interview Tuesday. “We believe that will be good with both brands, and we believe the fans will love what they will see.”
National Karting Champs to be Crowned This Weekend Kart racers from all across the United States have descended on Miller Motorsports Park this week for the U.S. Rotax Max Grand Nationals, one of the country’s most prestigious karting events.
The U.S. Rotax Max Grand Nationals, in its first visit to Utah, is the culmination of a season of racing in seven Rotax Max Challenge classes at 30 tracks across the nation. Competitors range in age from 7 to 65, with many of the younger competitors using karting as a springboard to a career as a professional racer. The vast majority of today’s professional racers got their start in karting.
Dempsey Continues Season with Andretti Autosport in Edmonton
Firestone Indy Lights driver Peter Dempsey will continue his rookie season with Andretti Autosport in this weekend’s doubleheader at Edmonton City Centre Airport. The Irish racer was first given the opportunity to compete with the veteran team at the most recent event in Toronto, July 10, where he finished in a career-best second position to teammate Stefan Wilson. Dempsey also piloted his #26 Andretti Autosport car to the top of an official practice session and a third place qualifying position for the challenging street course. The dream weekend helped secure his position with the team for another weekend of racing in Edmonton.
“Toronto was a dream start to my career with Andretti Autosport,” said Dempsey. “I went into the weekend with pretty high expectations from everyone, so I wanted to be sure I did the best job I could do for the team as a whole and tried to give them their first win of the 2011 season. To end the weekend with a 1-2 finish for the team in my first weekend with them was a really great achievement, and I’m so grateful to have been given the opportunity to compete with them. Hopefully, we can bring that same form to Edmonton this weekend.”
Celebration of Automobiles returning to IMS in May 2012 The Celebration of Automobiles will return May 10-13, 2012 to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, leading into the 96th Indianapolis 500 with even more exciting activities for fans and participants after a wildly successful inaugural event in 2011.
2012 Celebration of Automobiles vehicles will honor "The Manufacturers of the Indianapolis 500" and the rich history of the world's greatest auto race.
Vintage-classic cars from 1920-70 produced by manufacturers participating in the Indianapolis 500 during that era will be the featured vehicles in 2012, such as Alfa-Romeo, Auburn, Bentley, Bugatti, Buick, Chrysler, Dodge, Duesenberg, Ferrari, Fiat, Maserati, Mercedes-Benz, Stutz and many more. Special tribute will be paid to cars from Chevrolet, Honda and Lotus, the three engine manufacturers participating in the IZOD IndyCar Series and Indianapolis 500 starting in 2012.
Pivotal Doubleheader Weekend For Lights Point Leader Newgarden When the drivers of the Firestone Indy Lights Series roll into Edmonton City Centre Airport this weekend for Rounds 8 and 9 of the 2012 season they will be well aware that over 100 points are up for grabs. For championship leaders, Josef Newgarden, Esteban Guerrieri and Stefan Wilson, just how many of those points they take home could well dictate the outcome of their season. Newgarden currently sits in the top spot with 267 points, 37 clear of Guerrieri with Wilson a further 9 markers back.
Newgarden has scored a season-high 3 wins, with Guerrieri and Wilson each claiming a single victory, Wilson's having come at the most recent round in Toronto. Although the stakes are higher, Newgarden's approach hasn't changed.
INDYCAR Entertainment Rolling Out Hits in Hollywood In six short months, INDYCAR Entertainment's enterprises have led to a surge in exposure in the media and entertainment industries for the IZOD IndyCar Series and Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Santa Monica, Calif.-based INDYCAR Entertainment, which represents the sanctioning body and the Speedway, has been involved in producing domestic and international programming as well as generating exposure for its star competitors. Most recently is a deal with 3net, the joint venture 24/7 3D network from Sony, Discovery and IMAX.
In autumn, 3net will premiere "On the Inside Line: The Indy 500," an all-access pass to the events and personalities of the 100th anniversary Indianapolis 500. The program includes 3D coverage of drivers' last-minute preparations and team meetings, plus the stirring pre-race ceremonies. The speed and excitement of Pole Day and Carb Day are complemented by the drama of Bump Day as the 33-car field is set. IZOD IndyCar Series drivers Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan, Simona de Silvestro and Will Power are featured.
Andrew Ranger set for maiden Sprint Cup start at the Glen
Andrew Ranger will get a first Sprint Cup start at the Watkins Glen road course, 22nd round of the season, that will be held on Sunday August 14. Fas Lane Racing team owner Frank Stoddard will have the Roxton Pond 23-year old race phenom at the helm of his 32 race car for this road course event. Stoddard, known as one of the top five active Nascar crew chiefs, became a one-car team owner this year and was fortunate enough to rely on seasoned drivers that have kept his team in the Top 35 owner point standings. Terry Labonte, Mike Skinner, Patrick Carpentier, Ken Schrader and Mike Bliss, all took turns behind the 32-car steering so far this season. The time has come to have a young and promising driver take over, Andrew Ranger.
Chevrolet 2.35 Million First-Half Global Sales Sets Record Chevrolet sold 2.35 million vehicles globally in the first six months of 2011, the best half-year performance in Chevrolet’s 100-year history.
“Founded in the United States by a Swiss émigré, Chevrolet was created with a global focus,” said Joel Ewanick, GM global chief marketing officer. “One hundred years later, Louis Chevrolet’s roots continue to shape our company, and enable Chevrolet to offer great products and service to customers in more than 120 countries around the world. We will continue to work at bringing new customers to the Chevy family – no matter where they live.”
Chevrolet sold 286,499 more vehicles in the first half of 2011 than the same time period of 2010, a 14-percent increase year over year. In addition, Chevrolet set record first-half sales in many countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Denmark, Ecuador, France, South Africa, and Turkey.
Want to win in NASCAR? Cheat like hellUPDATE NASCAR announced the #7 team that competes in the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour has been penalized as a result of rules violations committed Saturday, July 16 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, N.H. The team was found to be in violation of Sections 12-1 (actions detrimental to stock car racing); 12-4-I (car, car parts, components and/or equipment used do not conform to NASCAR rules); and 20D-5.9P (the intake manifold ports did not completely seal to the cylinder head ports. The use of metal shim-type intake manifold gaskets is not permitted) of the 2011 NASCAR rule book.
The violations were discovered during post-race inspection on July 16. Mike LaRochelle, crew chief of car #7, has been suspended from all NASCAR regional touring series events until Dec. 31, 2011. Kevin Manion, owner of car #7, has been disqualified from the July 16 New Hampshire race, and has been suspended from all NASCAR regional touring series events until Dec. 31, 2011. Ryan Newman, driver of car #7, has been disqualified from the July 16 New Hampshire race. NASCAR
[Editor's Note: Well we are not sure if it was as a result of us hammering them on this topic for years, but bravo to NASCAR for finally doing what's right to stop the cheating. Start disqualifying cars and drivers and watch how all the cheating grinds to a halt.]
07/20/11 [Editor's Note: No one is talking about taking the win away from Ryan Newman if his team did indeed cheat. Just some fines or a suspension. So the motto in NASCAR is - if you want to forever have your name in the NASCAR record book as the race winner, cheat like hell because the win will never be taken away from you. Only in NASCAR......Is this a sport or a three-ring circus?]
Will there or will there not be a penalty for Sprint Cup driver Ryan Newman and the Whelen Modified Tour team he drove for in Saturday's F.W. Webb 100 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway?
Newman won the event, his third consecutive Whelen Modified Tour victory at New Hampshire and fourth victory in his last four starts in the division, but after the race NASCAR officials confiscated the Kevin "Bono" Manion owned car Newman drove to victory.
Newman competes for Stewart-Haas Racing in the Sprint Cup Series. Manion is the crew chief for Jamie McMurray with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing in the Sprint Cup Series.
Ferrari announces split with Costa Ferrari has revealed a premature end to its agreement with ex-Technical Director Aldo Costa, announcing on Wednesday that both parties have mutually agreed to split.
Italian-born Costa opted to step down from his previous role of Technical Director two days after the Spanish Grand Prix on May 22, six races into what looked set to be a particularly challenging campaign for the Maranello-based squad.
After Costa’s decision to relinquish the role, which subsequently saw Pat Fry, Corrado Lanzone and Luca Marmorini take on new technical positions, Ferrari had initially placed the 50-year-old elsewhere within its Formula 1 operation before agreeing to part ways.
SPEED coverage of Laguna Seca MotoGP race SPEED and SPEED.com are planning a multi-platform viewing experience from Sunday’s Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif.
Live television coverage begins Sunday on SPEED at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT from the first United States round of this year’s MotoGP World Championship. At SPEED.com, a live video stream starting at the aforementioned time will cycle through multiple on-bike cameras providing a true, two-screen experience throughout one of the most picturesque and undulating road courses in North America. SPEED is also slated to cover Saturday’s qualifying session beginning at 11:00 p.m. ET/8 p.m. P.T.
Filippi and Carroll in GP2 reshuffle Adam Carroll will make his GP2 return at the Nürburgring, rejoining the Super Nova team with which he won on the first ever weekend for the series at Imola in 2005. In the process, Luca Filippi switches to Coloni and replaces the departed Kevin Ceccon.
Northern Irishman Carroll (top) last raced in GP2 in 2008, with his final two races being a double retirement at Monaco. To date, he has recorded five victories between 2005 and 2007. In moving to Coloni, Filippi partners Romania’s Michael Herck.
ESPN changes announcers for Cup broadcasts ESPN/ABC announced Wednesday morning that Allen Bestwick will replace Marty Reid as the lead announcer for its Cup broadcasts, beginning with next week’s Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis.
ESPN/ABC broadcasts the final 17 Cup races of the season, starting with Indianapolis. Bestwick will be joined in the booth for Cup races with analysts Dale Jarrett and Andy Petree. Bestwick will be in the booth for all Cup practices, qualifying sessions and races shown by ESPN. Bestwick also will continue to be the lead host for the Monday roundtable discussion of "NASCAR Now.''
Force's comeback for 15th title up for Greatest Moments Award
As the NHRA greatest moments add up the latest opportunity for fans to recognize NHRA immortality was added today to the NHRA’s Facebook page. Up for fan consideration is John Force’s dramatic come from behind championship run on the final day of the 2010 NHRA Full Throttle Drag Series season. Force clinched his unprecedented 15th Full Throttle championship moving around rising star Matt Hagan for the win.
Over the weekend John Force Entertainment uploaded its fourth video promoting NHRA’s Greatest Moments centered around John Force Racing achievements in the first 60 years of the NHRA. This video has insight and interviews from the people behind the scene as well as Force himself. Fans can log onto Facebook and go here to vote: http://www.facebook.com/notes/nhra/-nhra-60-greatest-moments-5060/10150250224623283 or they can also find a link at nhra.com.
The first video uploaded on April 20th highlighted John Force being named Driver of the Year, a first for a drag racer. The second video uploaded a few days later on April 25th highlighted Force’s historic 100th career Funny Car win at Royal Purple Raceway (formerly Houston Raceway Park). Today’s video was celebrating Ashley Force Hood’s first career Funny Car win (and first female Funny Car win) at the 2008 Summit Racing Equipment Southern Nationals at Atlanta Dragway.
The NHRA is asking fans to vote through their Facebook page on the top 60 Great Moments in NHRA history. To view the entire list of 60 Moments fans can go here: http://www.nhra.com/NHRA60/
The four John Force Entertainment videos can be found here:
In addition to the Greatest Moments videos John Force Entertainment has also produced an online show titled Nitro Rewind which is broadcast on the NHRA’s YouTube channel each Thursday after an NHRA national event. The eighth episode reviewing Chicago’s event and previewing the upcoming event in Denver can be viewed here: http://youtu.be/IJ-XxjgKKDA
Helio Castroneves is returning to the scene of the crime.
Or is it crimes? Plural.
Second in 2008.
Second in 2009.
And a win that didn’t count when he was black-flagged just before the checkered flag for blocking his own teammate, dropping to 10th to make worldwide headlines in 2010. Castroneves blocked IZOD Indy Series points leader Will Power to prevent the Australian’s attempt to win his second Indy Edmonton race and ended up leaving Scott Dixon the winner, without leading a lap or being in front for a single second.
Magnus Racing unveils its Karting Invitational Magnus Racing is proud to add a new chapter to the team’s illustrious history as it will host its first annual Magnus Racing Karting Invitational this Friday, July 23, at F1 New Jersey, part of the New Jersey Motorsports Park.
Drivers from throughout GRAND-AM have been invited to lock horns in equally-prepared arrive-and-drive karts on the 1.1-mile F1 New Jersey kart circuit. In order to keep things interesting and to ensure at least some drivers are not at 100% for Saturday’s American Red Cross 250, Magnus Racing will award cold hard cash* to the top three finishers in the Magnus Racing Karting Invitational. First place will win $1000, with second earning $500 and third place taking home $250.
To ensure some order, Magnus Racing is currently negotiating with GRAND-AM Competition Director Mark Raffauf to run the driver’s meeting.
GM and Honda only want 10 IndyCars each There seems to be a perception that Honda and GM would willingly supply half the 2012 IndyCar field if Judd doesn’t have enough customers.
“Ideally we’d like to see an even distribution between the three of us but 10 cars would be good for us,” said GM's Kent. “We’re subsidizing every engine and we want to do our fair share but adding cars (past 10) just adds to the negative cash flow.”
Honda's Erik Berkman was even more direct: “I’m not planning on supplying more than 10 engines. We’re not making any money and each additional engine would cost us something and I don’t want half the field.”
Kyle Busch talks to media about speeding ticketUPDATE The court appearance for NASCAR driver Kyle Busch set for Wednesday will likely be postponed to a later date. Busch was set to be in administrative traffic court after he was caught going 128 miles an hour in a 45 mile an hour zone in rural Iredell County in late May. Busch was driving a high performance Lexus LFA super car given to him by Toyota, whose cars and trucks he drives in NASCAR. If convicted of speeding and reckless driving, Busch would have his license automatically suspended for 60 days by the department of motor vehicles. A judge also could find him guilty of a second-class misdemeanor, which under North Carolina law has a maximum punishment of up to 60 days in jail and a suspension of a driver's license for up to 12 months. WBTV
05/26/11 Kyle Busch spoke to the media in the Charlotte Motor Speedway media center, a few tidbits from the Q&A about the recent speeding ticket Busch got for going 128mph: Q) What is your reaction to the speeding ticket? Busch: "I'm certainly sorry for my actions and for my lack of judgment. This is something that I can take and learn from and hopefully move forward and not let happen again." Q) How do you look back on the speeding incident? Busch: "I'm certainly sorry that it happened and my actions led me to speed. It was a lack of judgment and all I can do is apologize to the public, my friends, my fans, my sponsors and everybody, look at this experience as a learning experience, and to move forward."
Ecclestone accused of bribery by German prosecutors
Bernie Ecclestone in hot water?
German prosecutors have alleged for the first time that Bernie Ecclestone and a trust belonging to the head of Formula One's family paid almost $44m (£27m) in bribes to a German banker.
In return, they allege, Ecclestone received $41.4m in commissions from BayernLB, the German bank, while a family trust company was paid $25m.
State prosecutors in Munich said on Tuesday they had charged Gerhard Gribkowsky, the German banker who organized BayernLB's sale of a stake in F1 in 2005, with breach of trust and tax evasion as well as having been in receipt of corrupt payments, the Financial Times reported. Gribkowsky, the former chief risk officer at the Munich-based bank, was arrested in January.
There's isn't a particular seating area that Tony Cotman would recommend to Edmonton Indy ticket buyers - mainly because there isn't a restrictive sightline in the expansive City Centre Airport circuit.
That's one of the fortuitous byproducts of the reconfigured 2.556-mile, 13-turn course, which incorporates the closed East runway. The city shuttered the runway 10 days after the 2010 race weekend. Cars will run counterclockwise.
"The (1.96-mile, 14-turn) course one was good and fast initially but it was too hard to pass on," said Cotman, president of NZR Consulting, which has overseen temporary street course design and builds for INDYCAR. "One of the big things we needed to focus on with this course was how to make the show better, and I think we've achieved that.
Back in February it was just an open lot, but once winter broke construction has accelerated
Reigning Indianapolis 500 champion Dan Wheldon is at Dallara Automobili's headquarters in Parma, Italy, this week for a seat fitting in preparation for the first round of 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series Safety Cell testing in early August.
The first prototype chassis will arrive in Speedway, Ind., by the end of the month for assembly and mating with the Honda V-6 test engine. Early in 2012, the public will have the opportunity to see the processes - from design to hitting the racetrack - at the Dallara/Indy Racing Experience factory and engineering facility near the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Stefano de Ponti, U.S. director of operations for Dallara, said construction of the 100,000-square-foot, $7 million building is ahead of schedule and should be completed by the end of the year. Dallara Automobili was selected to produce the next generation of IZOD IndyCar Series chassis in July 2010. Ground was broken for the facility on Nov. 16, 2010, in the heart of the town's redevelopment zone.
Montoya gets new crew chief before critical Indy race Juan Pablo Montoya will have a new crew chief next week for the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where he will be one of the favorites after two near-misses in the last two years.
Jim Pohlman, who has been with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing since 2006 in several roles, including as a Cup car chief, has been named interim crew chief for the No. 42 team, according to a team news release.
Pohlman replaces Brian Pattie, who became Montoya’s crew chief in May 2008. Pattie led Montoya to the Chase For The Sprint Cup in 2009 and the two appeared to have a good working relationship.
HPD's Erik Berkman (L) and AJ Foyt in Toronto recently
American Honda and its Honda Performance Development (HPD) subsidiary will power A.J. Foyt Racing in the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series, HPD and the team announced today. Under terms of the agreement, HPD will provide its new, turbocharged 2.2-liter Honda Indy V-6 engines to all Foyt entries in the Indianapolis 500 and the season-long IZOD IndyCar Series.
"A.J. Foyt is a living legend in American racing, and it's an honor to announce the continuation of our association in the IZOD IndyCar Series," said Erik Berkman, president of Honda Performance Development and vice president, corporate planning and logistics, for American Honda.
"A.J. shares many traits with Soichiro Honda, the founder of our company. Passionate, dedicated men, their names became synonymous with racing in their native lands, and each has served as a symbol of his country's passion for motorsport around the world. Today, we consider A.J. to be a venerable member of the Honda 'family,' and we look forward to our continued association with both the man and his team."
MIS announces staff changes Michigan International Speedway has made various changes to its staff, speedway president Roger Curtis announced today.
Michael Catalina has joined the speedway staff as a corporate partnerships executive. Catalina has over 20 years of experience in sales management and advertising mostly working in the clothing industry. He was most recently an account representative for LivingSocial.com, an experiential discount site.
Catalina holds a bachelor’s degree from Adrian College, where he was a member of the football team and is an Adrian College Athletics Hall of Fame member. Catalina and his wife Vicki reside in Chelsea, Mich. and have three children, Kelly (21), Anthony (17) and Emma (11).
Dallara Speedway Plans Go Full Speed Ahead Economic development is going full throttle at the new Dallara and Indy Racing Experience construction site in Speedway.
Dallara is building the new IndyCar chassis, along with new two-seaters for the Indy Racing Experience.
Eventually, Dallara will build 60 of the new cars at a site on Main Street that is under construction. The 100,000-square-foot building is a $12 million investment, and the contract to build Indy cars is just the beginning.
"We are already talking to different manufacturers to offer our consulting services and engineering services, not necessarily in racing," said Stefano De Ponti, Dallara general manager. "(There are) other filed where we can develop and put something together with Dallara expertise."
TNT NASCAR Summer Series Coverage Delivers Overall Growth TNT saw overall growth in total viewers, ratings and households with its just concluded six-race NASCAR Summer Series coverage of the 2011 Sprint Cup Series with 5,125,000 total viewers (up +3%, 4,990,000 in 2010), 3.1 U.S. HH rating (up +3% vs. 3.0 U.S. HH rating in 2010) and 3,615,000 households (up +3%, 3,495,000 in 2010).
NASCAR.com’s TNT RaceBuddy complemented the television coverage with an average of 886,000 weekly video streams during the six-race Summer Series. Overall, video streams on RaceBuddy were up 143% from last year and delivered 5,319,000 total video streams this year. RaceBuddy had record-breaking viewership during TNT’s first race of the 2011 Summer Series in Pocono with 1,146,000 video streams and proceeded to have the second (Daytona, 1,020,000) and third-highest (Kentucky, 928,000) video stream totals in its history during this year’s Summer Series.
NASCAR Names Sean Downes Managing Director, Business Development NASCAR announced that Sean Downes has been named managing director, business development. Downes is based in the New York office, where he will report to Jim O'Connell, NASCAR chief sales officer. From 2005 to 2009, Downes was NASCAR director of partnership marketing and was responsible for managing a number of official partners including Coca-Cola, Mars and P&G among others. Downes rejoins NASCAR after spending two years as vice president, corporate hospitality sales for Madison Square Garden, where he secured $200 million in new business and renewals during his tenure. Prior to joining NASCAR in 2005, Downes was vice president at Strategic Sports Group and was responsible for securing new business for the agency and for managing a portfolio of brands invested in multiple sports properties including NASCAR, NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL.
Niki Lauda visits site of near fatal crashUPDATE The correct site of Lauda's crash was Nurburgring, not Nurenberg. Nuremberg is where the Nazis were tried, and several were executed, after WWII. Nuremberg and Nurberg are two separate towns with very different histories.
07/19/11 During the first lap of the 1976 German Grand Prix, Niki Lauda's Ferrari 312B2 spun and hit an embankment off the side of the track. His helmet became dislodged form the impact, and the car fuel tank ruptured. The car was then hit by another, and it caught fire. Niki Lauda escaped with his life thanks to the combined actions of fellow drivers Arturo Merzario, Guy Edwards, Brett Lunger and Harald Ertl rather than by the ill-equipped track marshals. At the time, safety vehicles took about 10 minutes to reach the driver, since the accident occurred several miles along the circuit.
Lotus Sport USA To Contest American Le Mans Series In 2012UPDATE A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, How can a company that sell less cars in a year than GM sells in one day support all these racing programs? F1, IndyCar and ALMS? Something to think about. Does anyone remember JD Stacy? Tim DeCesaro
We agree it appears very suspect, but apparently their investors feel it is worth the upfront investment in order to build Lotus into a larger passenger car company. Remember that Ferrari is a racing company that sells cars. Perhaps Lotus is trying to follow that same model. Mark C.
07/18/11 News broke today that the North American fans will see the British-based manufacturer, Group Lotus, contest the LM GTE class in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) next year. The car of choice is the Evora under the banner Lotus Sport USA with Ian Dawson and John Pritzlaff as team principals. For Dawson, it is a return to Lotus since his time with then back in the early 1970s before leaving the Formula One factory team to help Hector Rebaque form his own team with the Lotus chassis and Ford engines in 78'; however the only privateer team in Formula 1 folded after the ’79 season.
Dawson is now back on board with Lotus, partnered with Pritzlaff who is a financial expert and the one with the funds. While the two worked on their future plans with Group Lotus support, drivers will be announced at a later date.
Edmonton track may play to Newman/Haas strengths There is only one first time. Newman/Haas Racing, the team that finished 1-2 in the first Edmonton Indy in the old ChampCar Series in 2005, wonders if it is possible to repeat the feat in 2011 on another new Edmonton layout.
But the team, formed after the late movie star Paul Newman met Carl Haas at an Edmonton International Speedway event 40 years ago, offered some interesting perspectives heading into race week, especially in terms of the new 2.256-mile, 13-turn street course for the 90-lap 10th race in the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series.
Pirelli assuming two stops in Germany Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli is expecting two pit-stops per car for this weekend’s German Grand Prix. At the Nürburgring, the Italian manufacturer will also be introducing a new version of its yellow-marked, Soft tyre compound for trialling.
“The Nürburgring is one of the most technical circuits we face all year, with a lot of lateral energy going through the tyres, and this makes strategy very important,” explains Pirelli Motorsport Director Paul
“Although they sit next to each other in our range, there is still a significant difference between the Soft and the Medium tyre, as we saw on the last occasion that this combination was used in Valencia.
2011 F1 Mid-Season Review The 2011 season saw the introduction of a number of major rule changes, most notably the implementation of the Drag Reduction System (DRS) and the introduction of Pirelli tires. With international TV viewing figures on the rise, the changes appear to be a popular success. But what has been the effect of the new regulations so far? As we approach the halfway point of the season, here are the numbers to make an assessment...
How many overtaking maneuvers have been made in the first nine races? The raw total of overtaking maneuvers during the first nine races is 623, including moves between team-mates, and passes by faster cars on the bottom three teams. This doesn't include overtakes on the first lap or passes made because of damage.
F1 opens Austin construction site for tour Fifteen miles southeast of Downtown Austin, the once peaceful community of Elroy is now home to heavy machinery and a massive overhaul that will turn an ordinary prairie into an international destination.
Austin's new Formula One race track is starting to take shape. Construction on the $250 million project began in January, and even though it won't be complete until spring 2012, details of the master plan for the 1,000-acre expanse are emerging.
Compare the size to the 40 acres of the original University of Texas campus to understand the enormity of the Circuit of the Americas. It's a state-of-the-art super-structure that, so far, is scheduled to host three major racing events.
Formula One, as the headliner, has signed on for 10 years starting in June 2012, leaving roughly 11 months to finish the job. MotoGP and V8 Supercars will arrive in 2013. The drought in Central Texas has actually kept site workers on schedule for completion.
Nurburgring puts F1 future in Ecclestone's hands (GMM) The Nurburgring aims to stay on the formula one calendar beyond 2011 by renegotiating the financial terms of its contract.
With the Rhineland-Palatinate state now run by a SPD/Green coalition, minister Eveline Lemke on Monday said that despite the contract running through 2016, this weekend's race will be the last one supported financially by the government.
"The conditions at the moment generate high and no longer acceptable losses," DPA news agency quotes circuit operator Jorg Lindner as saying.
"So there will only be a continuation of the great and legendary tradition of formula one at the Nurburgring if a future contract includes economically and politically acceptable conditions," he added.
And minister Lemke is quoted by the Financial Times Deutschland: "Whether this weekend's race will be the last depends on the demands of Bernie Ecclestone."
Hoosier home team of Newman, Stewart heats up entering Brickyard 400 The Hoosier "home team" is hot heading into the Brickyard 400 presented by Big Machine Records.com Sunday, July 31 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Stewart-Haas Racing earned its first-ever 1-2 finish at the Lenox Industrial Tools 301 on Sunday, July 17 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, as Indiana native Ryan Newman won in his No. 39 U.S. Army Chevrolet and team owner and fellow Hoosier Tony Stewart placed second in his No. 14 Office Depot/Mobil 1 Chevrolet.
It also was the first 1-2 finish by Indiana natives in NASCAR Sprint Cup Series competition since Newman won and Stewart placed second Sept. 18, 2005, also at New Hampshire. Newman drove for Penske Racing and Stewart for Joe Gibbs Racing at the time.
More new wings for Williams cars Williams will be transporting more new wings to the Nürburgring as the World Championship continues in Germany this weekend. The modifications come on the same weekend as full exhaust-blown diffuser regulations are reinstated.
“The Nürburgring is a high-downforce track with lots of challenging corner sequences, some off-camber turns and curbs,” explains Sam Michael, Technical Director for Williams. “Setup will be focused on the slow and medium-speed corners. We have a new rear wing, front wing and revised engine mapping for the exhaust blowing on over-run that has now been reinstated.”
Video: Latest Senna Movie trailer Senna's remarkable story, charting his physical and spiritual achievements on the track and off, his quest for perfection, and the mythical status he has since attained, is the subject of SENNA, a documentary feature that spans the racing legend's years as an F1 driver, from his opening season in 1984 to his untimely death a decade later. Far more than a film for F1 fans, SENNA unfolds a remarkable story in a remarkable manner, eschewing many standard documentary techniques in favor of a more cinematic approach that makes full use of astounding footage, much of which is drawn from F1 archives and previously unseen.
Pirelli to try new soft compound in Germany Pirelli will try out a new version of its soft tire in Friday practice at the German Grand Prix. The tire firm's motorsport boss Paul Hembery said the revised compound was part of efforts to make the Pirelli range slightly more durable to ensure the number of pitstops in races did not become excessive.
"It's not a big change from the current specification, but it is designed to fit in line with our latest versions of the P Zero Silver hard tire and P Zero White medium, both of which are a little harder than their original specification in order to reduce degradation," he said.
Allison becomes FOTA technical head Renault technical director James Allison has been appointed head of the Formula One Teams' Association's Technical Regulations Working Group. Allison's selection was made with unanimous support during a FOTA conference call at the end of last week.
Mercedes team principal Ross Brawn had led the technical section of FOTA until the start of this year, when he stood down so he could devote more time to his team.
He was replaced by Ferrari's Aldo Costa, but with Costa losing his position in the company's Formula 1 arm, a new head of the group was required.
Renault top-boss: We are here to stay Renault´s recently appointed chief operating officer, Carlos Tavares, says Renault are in Formula One for the long haul.
Genii Capital bought Renault, the factory team, last year, but the engine supplier will still be very much a part of Formula One. This season Renault is supplying their own team, or should we say the team that bears its name, as well as Red Bull and Team Lotus. Next year Williams will be added to the roster of teams with an engine from Renault.
Tavares was appointed COO back on May 30 this year, but his first official day at the office, was a fortnight ago, just six days prior to the British Grand Prix. The 52 year-old, who is heading Nissan´s American division, says Renault is an integral and important part of Formula One and will continue to develop their engines in line with the greener approach laid down by the FIA, a move which was strongly backed by Renault. A new engine formula will be implemented from 2014, from the current 2.4 liter V8 engines to 1.6 liter V6 turbo engines.
IndyCars to Indy Lights A read writes, Dear AR1.com, I love the new article you published today on passing down the current IndyCar to the Lights series. I hope they can make the cost work because I can tell you that the popularity of Indy Lights will double instantly if they run the bigger cars. The transition from Lights to IndyCar will be less of a step up.......and step down (for those IndyCar drivers who lose their ride, or are on the downside of their career). Jeff Metzger
Bernie says Channel 5 could replace BBC Bernie Ecclestone has said that he would likely approach Channel 5 first if the BBC elects not to extend it deal to cover Formula 1.
The BBC's current contract to broadcast grand prix racing finishes at the end of 2012, and there has been speculation that budget cuts at the company could make it unable to commit beyond then - or even exit its contract a year early.
Ecclestone told The Sunday Telegraph that he hoped the BBC would choose to continue covering the sport - but admitted there were other options if it did not happen.
Championship leader Felipe Nasr scored a surprise feature race victory this afternoon at Paul Ricard to make it two wins from three in the Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series’ French weekend. Will Buller won the reverse-grid sprint race for Fortec to rack up his maiden F3 victory.
Carlin man Nasr leaves France with a much enhanced points lead as a result of his efforts. Meanwhile his team-mate Kevin Magnussen, who was odds-on for the race three win only to lose it within sight of the checkered flag, goes home disappointed yet again.
Round 17 Will Buller made it to the top step of the Cooper Tires British Formula 3 International Series race podium this morning at Paul Ricard, the Ulsterman breaking his duck with a commanding drive for the Fortec-Mercedes team from pole position to the fall of the checkered flag.
Notes from TNT NASCAR Summer Series Lenox Industrial Tools 301 TNT NASCAR: Countdown to Green delivered by Pizza Hut Lindsay Czarniak (host), Kyle Petty (analyst) and Larry McReynolds (analyst)
McReynolds on why today’s New Hampshire 301 is so important: “It is a race and is worth 48 points if you can lead the most laps and walk away here with the trophy. More important, this is where we come back for the second race of the Chase. So even if you don’t win this race today you want to leave here with the feeling that ‘we got our arms around this one mile flat track.’”
Petty on teams having a playbook for the New Hampshire race: “It is important for some of these teams to stop the slide that has happened during the TNT Summer Series. Some of these teams have fallen off the face of the earth. It is important for other teams to get a win and it is important for others just to establish themselves here.”
ALMS Week in Review The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n had a whirlwind week, culminating in a jaw-dropping American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix. Now, race teams focus their attention north of the border as they continue the championship chase at Mosport International Raceway.
DYSON, BMW VICTORIOUS AT HOME: Dyson Racing's G-Oil backed Mazda took the overall victory in the intense American Le Mans Series Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park, and BMW Team RLL extended its winning streak to three races at the manufacturer's home venue. For a full replay of the American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix, check out ESPN3.com or AmericanLeMans.com.
Video: Nitro Rewind: Episode 8 Chicago/Denver In this episode of Nitro Rewind you'll get a recap of the O'Reilly Rt. 66 NHRA Nationals as well as Funny Car winner Mike Neff talking about his 200th win for Ford, and the crew guys (Bernie Fedderly, Jon Schaffer and Dan Hood) who help him so that he can tune and drive.
Top Fuel racer Antron Brown talks about sweeping the Western Swing in 2009 and how tricky Denver is.
Last year's Denver winner Robert Hight talks about that win how he feels he can win any race with the car he's got now.
Nitro Rewind host Bill Stephens talks about his media training and different drivers who have been a part of it.
Spengler wins DTM special event in Olympiastadion Munich
In head-to-head duels at the 1.192 kilometers long track, the 18 DTM drivers showed the spectators thrilling motorsport action. Canadian Mercedes-Benz driver Bruno Spengler made it all the way from the round of the last 16 to the finale and won the decisive battle against Italian Audi driver Edoardo Mortara, who had been unbeaten until then.
“This is just fantastic. Winning in front of so many people and in such an incredible atmosphere is simply great. For five seconds, I felt like being on a different planet. I was having great fun”, the 27-year old winner said. On his way to the overall win, Spengler had beaten, next to his final opponent Mortara, his fellow Mercedes-Benz drivers Christian Vietoris (D) and Jamie Green (GB) and Spain's Miguel Molina (Audi). Mortara defeated Mercedes-Benz driver Renger van der Zande (NL), David Coulthard and Susie Stoddart (also Mercedes-Benz and both from Scotland). Vietoris and Van der Zande were tied in third place.
He already won Race 2 in Brno and doing it again in today's Sprint Race in Donington he became the first Auto GP driver to clinch two race wins in 2011: Samuele Buttarelli boasted a really amazing drive, leading the pack from flag to flag and controlling the race like a veteran despite feeling the pressure of Adam Carroll behind him. The only tense moment of Buttarelli's race was the start, when he had to defend himself from a really good start by Bruno Mendez; Samuele anyway kept the inside line in Turn 1 and from then on nobody could challenge him. With some back to back fastest laps, all on the low 1'19" pace, he gained a 2" advantage quickly and then just kept the gap, clinching a result that launched him to third place in the Overall Standings.
Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa had his usual great start, taking the hole shot ahead of Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) and Stoner (Repsol Honda) at the start of the eni Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland MotoGP race in what was to be a 30 lap fight to the finish at the Sachsenring circuit. The Spaniard’s win is his fifth Grand Prix victory at the Sachsenring circuit and only his second race after returning from surgery for his broken collarbone.
At the end of lap one, Lorenzo was in the lead ahead of the three Repsol Honda’s of Pedrosa, Stoner and Dovizioso, who fought amongst each other for second until the Australian made his attack on lap 5 to take the lead, only to have Lorenzo regain the lead status a few laps later. The Mallorcan then tried desperately to defend his line, until lap 21 when Pedrosa got a huge drive out of the last corner to launch himself into the lead for the last time.
New rules make IndyCar drivers look like wankers [Editor's Note: They wanted double file restarts, well they got them. And now IndyCar drivers have to make excuses week-in-and week-out on why they keep crashing into each other. It makes the drivers look inferior because they keep crashing into each other. Do we see all these crashes in F1?]
English IndyCar Series driver Justin Wilson criticized the race craft on display at the crash-filled IndyCar street race in Toronto last weekend, and called for greater clarity in the rules governing overtaking in the sport to help drivers understand where and when they could make moves - and when they should be aware of being on the receiving end of moves from other drivers.
"It was pretty embarrassing", admitted Wilson, who drives the #22 Dreyer & Reinbold car and who finished 15th in the race. "It was bad. It was kind of the perfect storm. Toronto encourages that sort of driving. You've got the concrete patches where there's no grip so people get over-committed before they even realize it, and we had the side-by-side restarts. But ultimately it all came down to people making really bad decisions and poor race craft."
Newman's race winning modified confiscated by NASCAR
Ryan Newman's Modified was confiscated by NASCAR......where you can cheat like hell and still keep your win. They'll get a slap on the wrist fine instead of losing the win. Only in NASCAR.
The car Sprint Cup Series driver Ryan Newman drove to victory in Saturday's NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour F.W. Webb 100 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway was confiscated by NASCAR during post-race inspection. NASCAR spokesman Jason Christley said the car was confiscated to allow NASCAR to make further evaluations concerning restrictor plate and airflow issues with the motor on the car. Newman, who won the pole in qualifying for the event on Thursday, beat second place finisher Todd Szegedy to the checkered flag by 1.901 seconds on Saturday. "The action is not necessarily an indication of any impending penalty," Christley said. The car will be taken by NASCAR to their Research and Development Center in Concord, N.C. for further inspection. Hartford Courant
'It took four years, but Nicole Scherzinger and Lewis Hamilton are engaged': The Pussycat Doll's father reveals the intimate details behind the couple's turbocharged relationship.
When it comes to brains, beauty and plain ambition, few women could hope to out-do Nicole Prescovia Elikolani Valiente Scherzinger.
Not content with her lucrative career in the Pussycat Dolls and also being a solo artist with a No 1 hit, the singer and presenter has become an actress in a soon-to-be-released Hollywood blockbuster and now, at the age of 33, has knocked Cheryl Cole off her X Factor perch.
Wedding bells in the air? Nicole, seen with Lewis at the 2008 Brazilian Grand Prix, is 'an old-fashioned girl at heart and would love a family'
There is a glamorous boyfriend too: Lewis Hamilton, one of the most successful drivers on the Formula 1 Grand Prix circuit, and a multi-millionaire.
Kevin Harvick says he is racing with handcuffs when competing against rival Kyle Busch, whom he and his owner have feuded with since May. Harvick, who finished second behind Busch in the New England 200 on Saturday, told his Nationwide Series team over his radio that he had to be careful around Busch and then confirmed afterward that NASCAR President Mike Helton had warned him at Michigan in June not to touch Busch on the track.
"I was told a few weeks ago that if we touched the 18 car [of Busch], we'd be parked," Harvick said.
Jacques Villeneuve will have to buy a ride in NASCAR if he wants to race
Jacques Villeneuve came to New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Saturday to shop -- for a race team. While the 1997 Formula champ's first choice would be acquiring a full-time ride in either the Sprint Cup or Nationwide Series, Villeneuve realizes providing his own seat my be the best option to join the sport.
"There's two things, if I can get a good ride, I probably would not be looking at (buying a team) but the way the budgets are right now you might as well bring it yourself," Villeneuve said. "If I could get a full-time ride, I probably wouldn't bother."
Villeneuve said his first preference is Sprint Cup. But he would prefer a solid Nationwide Series team to a struggling Cup operation. Villeneuve said he's "very sad" that nothing has been lined up yet for Watkins Glen, but he would love the opportunity to race there as well. Fox Sports
Dolby charges to well deserved Zolder pole Craig Dolby (England) has taken a superb pole position for tomorrow’s Superleague Formula Grand Prix of Zolder, keeping his cool during a rain-affected final contest with Chris van der Drift (New Zealand) to grab the box seat for the Belgian event.
Dolby topped Group A before overcoming Andy Soucek (Spain – Atletico de Madrid) in the quarter finals of Superleague’s unique qualifying format. He then looked set for a semi final exit as Neel Jani (Belgium – RSC Anderlecht) outpaced him in the first two sectors of the lap, but the Englishman – who has his family cheering him on this weekend – dug deep to produce a breathtaking final sector and join van der Drift in the final. Jani – one of the pre-qualifying favorites for pole position – had to be satisfied with third on the grid for tomorrow’s opening race.
Series returnee van der Drift also escaped from Group A, progressing with the fourth fastest lap. His quarter final was an all-Antipodean encounter, with the New Zealander pulling off something of a shock by eliminating the much-fancied Australia entry of John Martin. Van der Drift continued his march to the final by easily dispatching Frederic Vervisch (Luxembourg) in the semis by a margin of 0.717s.
Nasr racks up win number six at Paul Ricard Championship leader Felipe Nasr claimed Cooper Tires British Formula 3 race victory number six at Paul Ricard this afternoon, the Brazilian profiting from a poor start by his pole-sitting team-mate Kevin Magnussen but then being made to work hard all the way to the checkered flag by his pursuer-in-chief, Hitech’s Antonio Felix da Costa.
Carlin driver Nasr made an impeccable getaway from P2 on the grid as Magnussen’s machine bogged down and the Dane slipped to seventh. Da Costa, a podium finisher at the Nürburgring a fortnight ago on his debut with Hitech, was away cleanly also, from third on the grid, and latched on to Nasr’s tail.
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