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ECR engines mop up at the Brickyard  Earnhardt-Childress Racing Engines added another jewel in the triple crown races of the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season when Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing's Jamie McMurray and the No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet crossed the Yard of Bricks to win the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

ECR Engines also earned the second, fourth and sixth spots in the final rundown with Richard Childress Racing's Kevin Harvick (No. 29 Shell-Pennzoil Chevrolet), Clint Bowyer (No. 33 Wheaties Fuel Chevrolet) and Jeff Burton (No. 31 Prilosec OTC Chevrolet), respectively. EGR's Juan Pablo Montoya earned the pole position the day before in the No. 42 Target Chevrolet. He led the first 16 laps and a total of 86, the most of any competitor, by lap 139 before crashing out of the race with just 15 laps remaining. He finished 32nd. The Racer's Group's Landon Cassill finished 39th in the No. 71 TaxSlayer Chevrolet. More ...
Medium and super soft for Hungary  Bridgestone heads to the tight and twisty Hungaroring with the medium and super soft Potenza tires for round twelve of the championship, the Hungarian Grand Prix on July 30 – August 1. After taking tires from the extremes of the dry tire range to Germany, Bridgestone reverts to a one step gap with the allocation for this race.

The medium and super soft allocation was previously used in Bahrain, Monaco and Canada. Although the 4.381 km Hungaroring is a permanent race track, its layout resembles that of a street course. The track surface is generally slippery, particularly at the beginning of the race weekend. More ...

tv news
NASCAR TV sponsor exposure numbers  With TNT’s six-week summer stint as television broadcaster of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series complete, Joyce Julius & Associates, Inc. examined the in-broadcast exposure results and presents the following sponsorship research highlights:

--Corporate sponsors averaged nearly 18 minutes per broadcast hour more on-screen time during TNT’s live race telecasts than Fox broadcasts in 2010 (2:46:06 versus 2:28:11).  Meanwhile, an average of 50 sponsor mentions occurred during a typical hour of coverage on both TNT and Fox.

--Auto manufacturers saw their exposure times spike during the TNT portion of the season, thanks to an abundance of brand logos present during the network’s usage of graphics accompanying the running order.  Chevrolet, Dodge, Ford and Toyota garnered a combined 16:10 per broadcast hour on TNT, compared to 0:40 for the same source of exposure during Fox telecasts. More ...

tv news
Potential Sponsors Miss Out on Over $6MM in Media Exposure  A naming rights sponsor for the 2010 Brickyard 400 would have lapped everyone in the race. The event was broadcasted Sunday, July 25 on ESPN-TV. A potential naming rights sponsor would have received over 6 minutes of broadcast exposure, and 38 verbal mentions missing out on over $6,200,000 in media exposure, during ESPN’s broadcast, according to industry leaders in sponsorship evaluation Front Row Analytics.

Front Row Analytics is the evaluation division of Front Row Marketing Services (frontrow-marketing.com), an industry leader in commercial rights sales and a subsidiary of the Philadelphia, PA based sport and entertainment firm, Comcast-Spectacor. More ...

Ecclestone thinks Ferrari was right to race as a team  
Ecclestone says F1 is a team sport and Ferrari has every right to race as a team
Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone thinks the best way to avoid the furor which greeted Ferrari's one-two finish in the German Grand Prix is to let teams decide themselves whether or not to issue driver orders.

Although Fernando Alonso took the checkered flag at Hockenheim, he did so after team-mate Felipe Massa, who had received a coded message from his race engineer Rob Smedley while leading the race, let him through.

Ferrari were fined US$100,000 dollars following the incident and although the result was allowed to stand, they could be punished further at a meeting of the FIA's World Motor Sport Council in September. More ...

Porsche Stepping Up Research on Electric Sports Cars  With the development of three experimental all-electric-drive Porsche Boxsters, Porsche announced today that it is taking another major step toward its plans to build electric-powered sports cars. These test cars are an important part of what Porsche recently dubbed its Porsche Intelligent Performance initiative, a long-standing commitment by the German car company to continually combine greater efficiency with Porsche's high performance, thus lowering fuel consumption and emissions.

In this practical test as part of the Stuttgart Model Region for Electromobility, the three electric Boxster research cars are being driven daily in order to provide insight into new electric drive components and new battery systems being developed by Porsche. In addition, these field tests are also intended to provide further findings on the infrastructure required for electromobility. Ultimately, the initiative will provide consumer insight into how future products must be designed and produced in order to meet customer expectations. More ...

Video proving Castroneves guilty as charged in Edmonton  This video shows what the IRL's Brian Barnhart said in the drivers meeting about blocking and the video shows that Castroneves did exactly what Barnhart said was not allowed  We at AR1.com called it wrong because we assumed the rule was as it was in Champ Car and F1 - the leader is allowed one move, and then must maintain their line.  Only the IRL does it this way, we assume to promote more passing.
Racing News
Video: Huge truck accident involving Bruno Junqueira  
Domenicali's account of how he saw the Alonso/Massa controversy  This is how Ferrari Team Boss Stefano Domenicali's post-race encounter with the international media played out:

Q: Could you explain the rules of team orders and how they work in Formula 1 and why this wasn't team orders?

Domenicali: I don't want to say what is team orders because honestly I think that what I can say is if you are referring to the situation you have in mind it is that we gave information to Felipe on what the situation was and how it was evolving and because we had already seen in the past that certain situations would not give the best result for the team, that was the information that we wanted to give. We leave the drivers to understand and take notice of it in order to ensure that the team, in terms of the result, does the best.

Q: How is this different from Austria 2002?

Domenicali: Honestly I don't know. What we said to him today was information about the situation that was behind. That's what we said today. More ...

Power strengthens point lead at Edmonton  
Will Power
Will Power didn't make it three victories in a row, which would have the accomplishments of three other IZOD IndyCar Series drivers, but the 43 points earned in the Honda Indy Edmonton is ample consolation.

Power, the runner-up to Scott Dixon in the 95-lap race, takes a 50-point lead over Target Chip Ganassi Racing's Dario Franchitti into the Aug. 8 Honda 200 at Mid-Ohio presented by Westfield Insurance. Dixon, who is 71 points back with six events remaining (two road courses and four ovals), has won two of the three races at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

Power, who picked up one bonus point for winning the PEAK Performance Pole Award in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske car, led a field-high 76 laps on the demanding 1.973-mile, 14-turn City Centre Airport circuit to earn two more bonus points. He's accrued 12 bonus points, and handily leads the Mario Andretti Road Course championship standings. More ...

Tracy leads four KV Racing Technology drivers in top 10  
Before the green flag for the Honda Indy Edmonton, it was announced that Honda Canada and IZOD IndyCar Series driver Paul Tracy had raised more than $112,578 for Make-A-Wish Canada through a program in which fans in Toronto and Edmonton had the opportunity to sign the race suits worn by Tracy for a donation.

Tracy gave something back to fans - leading a four-driver top-10 performance for KV Racing Technology with a sixth-place finish in the demanding 95-lap race on the City Centre Airport circuit.

Mario Moraes advanced seven positions to finish seventh (his fourth top 10 in 11 races). E.J. Viso, who started a season-high sixth in the No. 8 PDVSA Jet Aviation KVRT car, followed in eighth and Takuma Sato earned the first top 10 of his initial IZOD IndyCar Series season with a ninth place in the No. 5 Lotus KVRT car. More ...

Buick Sells 100,000th LaCrosse in China  Less than a year after its launch in China, sales of the new Buick LaCrosse have reached 100,000 units. The LaCrosse is the fastest-growing member of China’s premium upper-medium sedan segment. In the first six months of 2010, the LaCrosse 3.0-liter SIDI model accounted for nearly 80 percent of the segment (upper-medium sedans priced over RMB 300,000, or roughly $44,200 USD).

The LaCrosse, which also was introduced as a redesigned model in the U.S. in 2009, has been recognized for its sculpted exterior styling and luxurious interior. It features a suite of advanced personal technologies and safety features that rate among the best in the industry. More ...

Chevrolet Cruze Sales Pass 270,000  Even before the first models reach U.S. dealers, the Chevrolet Cruze is among the fastest-growing nameplates in the world with sales rising an average of 18 percent per month.

Internationally, customers have purchased 140,000 Cruze in the first six months of 2010 and a total of 270,000 since Cruze launched in the spring of 2009 in Europe, followed by other major markets, such as China in summer of 2009.

Cruze is currently available in more than 60 countries, with China, Russia, Mexico, India and Spain as the top five sales markets. Including Holden and Daewoo versions sold in Australia and South Korea, total sales exceed 340,000 vehicles across five continents. More ...

Red Bull will decide on Speed's future soon  Red Bull Racing plans to announce in the next month whether driver #82-Scott Speed will return to the team next year, Red Bull general manager Jay Frye confirmed Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In his second full season of Cup racing, Speed is 26th in the standings. He was 35th last year, and while he's nine spots better in the standings and has been running at the finish of every race this year, Speed only has two top-10 finishes and has finished on the lead lap in 10 of the 20 races. "We should have some sort of announcement with him in the next month," Frye said Sunday. "We need to perform. We need to do better. We started the year off pretty strong. We kind of regressed a little bit here the last little bit. The 27-year-old Speed, who competed in Formula One in 2006 and 2007, was asked Saturday about rumors that he had signed a contract extension with the organization. "I don't know if I'm allowed to talk about it," Speed said. "We'll see."  Scene Daily
Whitmarsh to have private meeting with Ferrari  McLaren Mercedes F1 Team Principal Martin Whitmarsh declared that he is planning a private talk with Ferrari to let them know his views on the team orders controversy during yesterday's German Grand Prix.

Ferrari was fined $100.000 and could face further sanctions from the FIA's World Motor Sport Council for illegally using team orders.

After the race, Whitmarsh said: "I don't want to get drawn into it. I have my own private views on it. They were quicker than us today; they got a 1-2, but perhaps in a different order from that which people may have thought was right. More ...

McMurray, Ganassi working on contract extension  Jamie McMurray and Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing officials are in the process of negotiating a new deal for the Sprint Cup driver, sources for both sides said following Sunday's victory at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. McMurray signed a one-year deal when he came to EGR from Roush-Fenway Racing this season. Co-owner Chip Ganassi would not comment on negotiations, but when asked if he planned to sign the reigning Daytona 500 and Brickyard 400 champion to a long-term deal he quipped, "I'm going to fire him. What do you think?" Sources said McMurray's primary sponsor, Bass Pro Shops, also is expected to return. ESPN.com Sent via BlackBerry by AT&T
Video: IndyCar 2010 Edmonton Controversial Finish  
Video: Barnhart on Castroneves penalty  
Brickyard 400 tickets sales down  UPDATE #3 It was hard to hide the estimated 100,000 empty seats at the 225,000-seat Indianapolis Motor Speedway Sunday for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Brickyard 400.  The attendance is the lowest at the Speedway since NASCAR first came to Indy back in 1994.

07/23/10 Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday will host the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Brickyard 400, and track CEO Jeff Belskus said advance ticket sales are "running well behind last year," when there was an estimated crowd of 180,000. The track has "more than 257,000 seats." Belskus: "We're still going to have a huge crowd, just less of a huge crowd than in previous years."

07/21/10 Correction - The Friday practice GA tickets are $10.  The race is $40 per ticket for General Admission.  In both cases children under 12 are free.  There will also be a Radio Disney Concert for the kids.

07/21/10 The Brickyard is offering General Admission tickets for this weekend's Brickyard 400 at $10.00 and, with the ticket lets all kids under 12 get in free with the ticket holder.
Schumacher disputes German road speeding charge  (GMM)  Michael Schumacher is disputing a road speeding charge.

Police fined the seven time world champion EUR140 for breaking the 100kph speed limit on a German autobahn by 20kph, according to Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

The 41-year-old was allegedly driving an elite rented Weismann sports car, but Schumacher is denying that he is depicted in the speed camera photograph.

The case was therefore moved to a district court in Traunstein, Germany, but neither Schumacher nor his lawyer appeared, so court costs have been added to the fine. More ...

German broadcaster RTL not disappointed with Schumacher  (GMM)  Germany's free to air television broadcaster has denied it is disappointed with Michael Schumacher.  Sunday's Hockenheim race was not a sellout, and predicted astronomical TV ratings earlier this year have now subsided, given the seven time world champion's modest return to formula one in 2010. An impressive 10 million Germans tuned into his comeback race in Bahrain, but the average figure is now between 5 and 7 million per race.

"We are far from disappointed," spokesman Matthias Bolhofer told Der Spiegel.  "On average we are 1.13 million higher than last year's average.  That we would not be able to keep up the hype of the opening race was obvious," he added.

Besides Schumacher, there are five other German drivers on the 2010 grid.

Massa admits Alonso was faster, blames hard tires  Asked if he felt like the number two at Ferrari after yesterday's German GP, Felipe Massa again blamed the hard tires.

"Well, I cannot say that I'm there fighting for first position in the championship. I've lost many points, important points, and the only thing I can say is that I know what I can do, I can win races, that's what counts and everybody saw today that I can win races and I can be competitive. For sure, what happened today is something that has happened in many races this year: when I put on the hard tires I struggle.

Alonso and Vettel were trading fastest race laps at the end of the race and Massa simply could not respond.  He was slower and was in the way, which meant Vettel could have slipped through and pass both of them.  So Massa (not the team) made the call and let Alonso through.

"This is exactly what happened in the race. On the soft tires, I was very strong and then when we went onto the hard, I was struggling again, so there's no news about that. So I know why sometimes I'm a little bit penalized, it's just because of the very hard tires that we have this year. I don't think it's a good thing, to be honest, because you don't have strategies any more.

"Then also the grip level on hard tires for me was always a little bit of an issue this year, and most of the races that we used these tires I was struggling. And this is another one where I was very good on the soft tires in the first part of the race, and then we put on the hard tires and I was struggling again. It's a similar issue that we have had in some races."

Media, F1, goes to war on Alonso, Ferrari and team orders  (GMM)  F1's harsh spotlight of the international media is shining on Ferrari and Fernando Alonso, but also the regulation prohibiting team orders.

In a frosty post-race press conference at Hockenheim, some reporters warned Spaniard Alonso he now risks winning a "dirty" championship, comparing his win at the hands of an illegal team order to his victory at Singapore in 2008.

"That's your opinion," the Ferrari driver told them.

Team orders, of course - dating back to the gentleman racer's days when number two drivers would pull into the pits to hand over their cars - are nothing new.

"This was just handled very badly," said Lotus' Mike Gascoyne.

And Ferrari's handling in Germany, with Felipe Massa ordered aside by way of a coded message from apologetic engineer Rob Smedley, fuelled the media's fire. More ...

FIA says Red Bull, Ferrari front wings legal  (GMM)  The FIA's Jo Bauer on Sunday eased a burgeoning controversy about flexible front wings.

Before the German grand prix, team boss Christian Horner fended off new rumors about Red Bull's front wing - the one infamously switched between Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel at Silverstone two weeks ago.

Both RB6s wore the new wing specification throughout the Hockenheim weekend, where photographs of its extremities bending towards the ground did the rounds in rival team garages.

In-car video footage of the Red Bull appeared to support the claims, while the photographs also depicted a bending wing on the Ferrari.

"On the pictures I was shown this morning, I - nor our engineers - can explain what ... it looks unusual," McLaren team boss Martin Whitmarsh said. More ...

Victory for Lorenzo at Laguna Seca  Jorge Lorenzo’s Championship lead was stretched to 72 points at Laguna Seca as the Fiat Yamaha rider won the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix ahead of Casey Stoner and Valentino Rossi, in a round nine race that saw Dani Pedrosa crash out when leading.

A trademark lightning start from Pedrosa saw him lead into turn one of the first lap and the Spaniard appeared to be making a similar break for victory as he had done in the previous round, as he led for the early part of the race whilst setting a fierce pace.

However, on Lap 11 and with Lorenzo pressuring him for the lead the Repsol Honda rider crashed out at turn five, leaving his fellow Spaniard to take his M1 to a sixth win of the season as he tasted victory on the Californian circuit for the first time. More ...

Edmonton to spend $5.5 million on Indy sponsorship over three years  Octane Racing Group of Montreal has reached a deal in principle with the City of Edmonton for $5.5 million in Indy sponsorship commitments over three years.

Octane president Francois Dumontier said Sunday that the City’s chief financial officer Lorna Rosen has already accepted the financial terms of his proposal to promote the race through 2013 at City Centre Airport, and has raised only “technical issues, mainly about the airport” in a conversation with him on Thursday. He said those issues were resolved.

“Having a race downtown is really important,” Dumontier said at a Sunday press conference at the Indy site.

Sources said the City has committed to providing $1.5 million in 2011, $1.9 million in 2012 and $2.1 million in 2013 to the Octane group. More ...

Hinchcliffe finally beats JK Vernay  
Hinchcliffe led Vernay all 50 laps
James Hinchcliffe collected his second victory of the Firestone Indy Lights Series season on Sunday as the Canadian stand-out delivered a textbook flag-to-flag performance in Round 8, the ‘Edmonton 100’, hosted on the temporary Edmonton Airport Circuit in Alberta, Canada.

The 23-year-old went from heartbreak to hero in a week following his crushing retirement on the last lap at his home race in Toronto last Sunday.  The second and final leg of the Indy Lights tour of Canada proved more favorable to the driver of the #2 Team Moore Racing entry, James adding to his Long Beach victory from April and strengthening his second place in the Driver Standings behind France’s J.K. Vernay. More ...

Domenicali denies Ferrari gave team orders  Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali is adamant his team did nothing wrong in today's German Grand Prix. In another F1 farce, Ferrari were fined 100,000 US dollars for allegedly implementing team orders that resulted in Felipe Massa allowing by Fernando Alonso to claim his 23rd career victory.

The Maranello marque face the prospect of further punishment as the matter has been referred to the World Motor Sport Council.

Domenicali, though, has expressed his confidence "that the World Council will know how to evaluate the overall facts correctly".

The incident was sparked by a coded message to Massa on lap 47 that "Fernando is faster than you", which led to the Brazilian allowing by the double world champion two laps later.

Explaining the situation, and speaking before the fine was handed out, Domenicali said: "We gave information to Felipe about the situation.

"We have already seen in the past that certain situations did not provide the best result to the team (referring to the accident in Turkey between Red Bull drivers Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel).

"So that was the information we gave and we left it to the driver to understand and take notice of it in order to make sure the team, in terms of results, gets the best.

"It is a shame in a situation like today, with a great performance, everyone is focused on this. More ...

Ferrari not appealing stewards' team order verdict  (GMM)  Ferrari is not appealing its $100,000 penalty for imposing illegal team orders in the German grand prix.

The stewards, also directing the matter to the World Motor Sport Council, found the Italian team guilty of both team orders and disrepute.

The team denies the charge, arguing that Felipe Massa made the decision to let Fernando Alonso pass him at Hockenheim after struggling on the hard tires and receiving advice from his race engineer that Alonso was faster.

"In the interests of the sport, we have decided not to go through a procedure of appealing against it (the decision), confident that the World Council will know how to evaluate the overall facts correctly," said team boss Stefano Domenicali. More ...

Ferrari summoned by stewards amid team orders scandal  UPDATE Alonso was clearly faster than Massa and was being held up, having said on his radio, "This is ridiculous" while being held up by the Brazilian.

The slower Massa was clearly holding up Alonso with Vettel lurking in third
The Spanish driver dodged the issue during the post-race press conference, saying both drivers have to do what the team says.

"We tried to do our race, we tried to do as good as we can," said Alonso, who scored his second win of the year. "We are professional drivers and we try to work as a team and we try to do the best we can every day.

"Not only here on the track but in the race and factory, preparing the races. Again, I think we have been doing a good job in the last couple of races, finally we got a strong Sunday with a strong result. I think we are happy with this – all the other things, it is more for you [media] if you want to write all these things." More ...

Venezuelan Star Mazda Team Signs Chilean Driver  
Kevin Toledo
Linares Racing, the first-ever Venezuelan team to enter the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear has announced it will expand to a 2-car effort for the remaining six races of the 2010 season with the addition of Chilean open-wheel racer Kevin Toledo.

The team has been running a single-car effort for 2009 Venezuelan national FF1600 champion Carlos Linares with backing from IND (Instituto Nacional De Deportes), Venezuela's National Institute of Sport.  With several top-12 finishes, Linares is currently tied for 13th in the championship battle.

Toledo, who ran the 2009 Star Mazda Championship season with another team (with a best finish of 7th on the Iowa Speedway Oval), also has several years of experience in the Chilean F3 series and F2 in Argentina. More ...

Horner believes it was a team order  Christian Horner has led the way in criticizing Ferrari after the German GP by describing the radio message given to Felipe Massa as "the most obvious team order I have ever heard".

With Massa giving up the lead to Fernando Alonso following a less-than-subtle communication from Rob Smedley, the Red Bull boss has challenged the FIA to investigate whether the sport's rules, which outlaw team orders, have been breached.

Asked if, in identical circumstances, he would have given the same instruction, Horner replied: "No. I would have let my drivers race." More ...

Team order scandal erupts as Ferrari wins in Germany  (GMM)  Sunday's German grand prix began amid a burgeoning flexible wing saga, and ended with a new scandal about team orders.

After a team one-two, and soaked in champagne, Ferrari team boss Stefano Domenicali was hounded in the Hockenheim pitlane by reporters accusing him of illegally ordering Felipe Massa to hand his victory to Fernando Alonso.

"This is not true," Italian Domenicali told an angry Eddie Jordan on British television BBC.

Red Bull's Christian Horner, earlier accused by his rivals of running an illegally-flexing front wing on the RB6 in Germany, said the FIA stewards should actually be probing Ferrari's alleged rules breach.

"That was the clearest team order I've ever seen.  As clear as 2002," said the Briton, referring to the Austrian grand prix of that year, when then Ferrari team boss Jean Todt ordered Rubens Barrichello aside for Michael Schumacher. More ...

“I like her, she’s way nicer than Danica.”  
Simona de Silvestro - By far the best female driver in IndyCar.  Put her in a top ride like Danica has and watch her go
The fan outside Simona de Silvestro’s garage said what a lot of people were thinking: “I like her, she’s way nicer than Danica.”

She certainly was on Saturday. Way nicer than Patrick. And way faster.

The 21-year-old rookie from Switzerland finished seventh in qualifying for the Honda Indy Edmonton, just a sliver out of the coveted Firestone Fast Six and a country mile ahead of the most famous female in racing.

“It’s going to be a long race, a hard race, really physical here, so starting more up front is going to help us,” beamed de Silvestro, savoring the best qualifying effort of her young IndyCar career. More ...

Gutiérrez leads the way in Hockenheim  ART Grand Prix’s Esteban Gutiérrez took his fourth race victory of the season at Hockenheimring today. The Mexican stamped his authority on the Series even further after a dominant win over his rivals, and now has a 30 point lead in the Series standings. 

Race 2 in Germany was once again full of drama. Tech 1 Racing’s Daniel Juncadella had a good start and kept his lead from pole, as did Gutierrez who was quick to snatch second from Addax Team’s Felipe Guimaraes, the Brazilian’s start was then made worse when Coletti passed him for third. Despite a clean getaway for the majority of the field, a tangle further down the grid saw the safety car deployed before the end of lap one. More ...

Vettel: Ferrari strong in straight-line speed  Sebastian Vettel will start today’s German Grand Prix from pole position. The Red Bull driver won qualifying with a margin of just two thousands of a second ahead of Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso. Vettel has said Ferrari’s advantage is their straight-line speed at Hockenheim.

In qualifying Sebastian Vettel was the fastest driver in the third and final sector at Hockenheim while Fernando Alonso was the fastest of the two in the second sector. When asked what sector is going to make the difference during the race Vettel answered: "It’s quite different, because obviously in qualifying you are on low fuel whereas at the start of the race or for the majority of the race you are on quite high fuel. More ...

Schumacher fined for pit lane speeding  Michael Schumacher has received a fine of 1,000 euros (840 pounds) by Formula 1 governing body the FIA for speeding in the Hockenheim pit lane during Friday’s second free practice session.

The speed in question was recorded just two minutes into the 90-minute period, with the Mercedes driver clocked at 64.1km/h (39.8mph) when the practice speed limit is 60km/h (37.3mph).

The final sum of Schumacher’s fine is calculated as every kilometer over the limit equates to 200 euros, with the final 0.1km being rounded up.

NASCAR, we have a problem  When the green flag waved to start the Daytona 500 in February, marking the beginning of the Nascar Sprint Cup season, not a single rookie driver was in the 43-car field. The last time that happened?


The Nascar rookie class of 2010 is virtually nonexistent, except for the unheralded, unrookie-like Kevin Conway, 31. Heading into Sunday’s race in Indianapolis, he is 35th in points driving for a small team that struggles to keep up with the multicar juggernauts of the sport. More ...

Latest F1 news in brief  
  • Renault team not in financial trouble - Boullier
  • Much more to come from blown floor concept - Whitmarsh
  • Webber tips Ferrari's return to winning form
  • USF1 chiefs lied and damaged F1 in America - Dennis
  • Sunny skies at Hockenheim on Sunday morning
  • Manager confirms Hartley's Red Bull ousting 'political'
  • Twitter confirms Button's reunion with girlfriend
  • Briatore just visiting old F1 'friends'
  • Williams set to keep same drivers in 2011 - co-owner

Renault team not in financial trouble - Boullier
(GMM)  Team boss Eric Boullier has played down reports that Enstone based Renault is in financial trouble.

Reports this weekend have revealed that the team has asked Bernie Ecclestone to issue commercial payments for 2011 ahead of time.

Some of the other teams refused the request.

Germany's Auto Motor und Sport reports that recent sponsor deals by Renault have not delivered in terms of actual cash, while Russian driver Vitaly Petrov ultimately brought only a million euros to the team.

But Boullier denies that Renault is desperate for money.

"These are the usual games played by people who try to tarnish your image," he is quoted in French by the news agency AFP.

"There is nothing to say.  There is no problem."

Boullier insists that the only problem is a temporary cash-flow issue that is delaying technical development.

"I need to spend more because we want to finish the R30 and begin the R31.  Like any normal company, I asked the shareholders to help us.

"We have television money that is coming, so why not ask for it in advance?" he said.

He denied the team has a problem with its sponsors.

"We have signed three sponsors for the car and there are two more coming," explained Boullier.

"Give us time.  You don't sign a contract and the money comes the next morning.  That's all," he said. More ...

Lorenzo nips Stoner for USGP pole  The World Championship leader won a marvelous contest with Casey Stoner for first spot on the starting grid at the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix, with a blistering late lap of 1’20.978 to take his 40th career pole.

Jorge Lorenzo took his fifth consecutive pole position of the campaign on Saturday with a fantastic display in qualifying at Laguna Seca, in which he and Casey Stoner battled to the very end for top spot on the starting grid. Having both lapped consistently fast it was the Fiat Yamaha rider who finally took pole with his penultimate lap of the session, a 1’20.978, which made him the only rider of the weekend so far to have broken the 1’21” barrier. More ...

IRL places Milka Duno on probation  The Indy Racing League, the sanctioning body for the IZOD IndyCar Series, has placed driver Milka Duno on probation through Dec. 31, 2010 for not consistently meeting minimal performance standards.

Duno's probation requires immediate and substantial improvement to her driving during the remaining events on the 2010 schedule. More ...

Hinchcliffe and Vernay continue Lights battle  A pattern has developed.  James Hinchcliffe out qualifies his main Firestone Indy Lights rival JK Vernay and then Vernay finds a way to beat him in the race.  Will this pattern be repeated in Edmonton this weekend?

Qualifying Saturday for the Edmonton 100 Firestone Indy Lights event on the 1.973-mile Edmonton City Centre Airport circuit, with starting position, car number in parentheses, driver, time and speed in parentheses:

1. (2) James Hinchcliffe,  1:06.2160 (107.267)
2. (7) JK Vernay,  1:06.2269 (107.249)
3. (27) Martin Plowman,  1:06.2707 (107.179)
4. (26) Charlie Kimball, 1:06.3802 (107.002)
5. (40) Dan Clarke, 1:06.7234 (106.451)
6. (10) Gustavo Yacaman, 1:06.7522 (106.405)
7. (28) Stefan Wilson,  1:06.7741 (106.371)
8. (29) Sebastian Saavedra,  1:06.9172 (106.143)
9. (22) Adrian Campos Jr.,  1:07.2857 (105.562)
10. (49) Philip Major,  1:07.4408 (105.319)
11. (11) Pippa Mann,  1:08.1569 (104.212)
12. (18) Rodrigo Barbosa, 1:08.9418 (103.026)
13. (4) Carmen Jorda, 1:09.1981 (102.644)

Edmonton Practice 3: Penskes still 1-2-3  
Rank Car Driver Name Time Speed Diff Gap
1 3 Castroneves, Helio 01:01.6643 115.185 --.---- --.----
2 12 Power, Will 01:01.7342 115.055 0.0699 0.0699
3 6 Briscoe, Ryan 01:01.9521 114.650 0.2878 0.2179
4 06 Mutoh, Hideki 01:02.2237 114.149 0.5594 0.2716
5 9 Dixon, Scott 01:02.2414 114.117 0.5771 0.0177
6 15 Tracy, Paul 01:02.2737 114.058 0.6094 0.0323
7 22 Wilson, Justin 01:02.3631 113.894 0.6988 0.0894
8 11 Kanaan, Tony 01:02.3944 113.837 0.7301 0.0313
9 26 Andretti, Marco 01:02.3993 113.828 0.7350 0.0049
10 5 Sato, Takuma (R) 01:02.4757 113.689 0.8114 0.0764
11 34 Romancini, Mario (R) 01:02.4951 113.654 0.8308 0.0194
12 37 Hunter-Reay, Ryan 01:02.5062 113.634 0.8419 0.0111
13 10 Franchitti, Dario 01:02.5773 113.504 0.9130 0.0711
14 2 Matos, Raphael 01:02.6706 113.335 1.0063 0.0933
15 32 Moraes, Mario 01:02.7890 113.122 1.1247 0.1184
16 8 Viso, EJ 01:02.8707 112.975 1.2064 0.0817
17 78 de Silvestro, Simona (R) 01:02.9055 112.912 1.2412 0.0348
18 19 Lloyd, Alex (R) 01:02.9634 112.808 1.2991 0.0579
19 4 Wheldon, Dan 01:03.0208 112.706 1.3565 0.0574
20 36 Baguette, Bertrand (R) 01:03.0544 112.646 1.3901 0.0336
21 24 Scheckter, Tomas 01:03.1226 112.524 1.4583 0.0682
22 7 Patrick, Danica 01:03.2519 112.294 1.5876 0.1293
23 14 Meira, Vitor 01:03.3345 112.147 1.6702 0.0826
24 77 Tagliani, Alex 01:03.3540 112.113 1.6897 0.0195
25 18 Duno, Milka 01:07.9345 104.554 6.2702 4.5805
Massa to return to Budapest hospital to 'say hello'  (GMM)  The day after Sunday's German grand prix will mark one year since Felipe Massa's horror qualifying crash in Hungary.

On Saturday at Hockenheim, the 29-year-old Brazilian said he "definitely" feels the significance of qualifying in the top three on the eve of the anniversary of a difficult chapter in his life.

"It was a very difficult time for me," he told reporters in Germany.

"Somebody was saying that I still need to be here, so I'm here, very happy and working, still doing my job and let's go back to Hungary and let's try to achieve a good result there," added Massa. More ...

Hamilton 'suffocated' by father and Dennis - Whitmarsh  (GMM)  Martin Whitmarsh has backed Lewis Hamilton's decision earlier this year to tread a new path in his professional career.

The 2008 world champion's split with his manager and father Anthony was reported as a significant disruption in his life, but team boss Whitmarsh indicated that it was not the only step taken by the 25-year-old for his future.

"Lewis was in bits at the start of the year," he is quoted by the Telegraph.

"But it was always going to come about because he was suffocated to an extent by his dad and Ron (Dennis)." More ...

Cool but dry race expected at Hockenheim  
Mark Webber in the rain - much of the weekend so far has been wet or damp
(GMM)  Sunday at Hockenheim should host a dry German grand prix.  There has been often heavy rain at the venue since Thursday, despite the fact that the days preceding F1's arrival in Germany were very hot.

Some of that blue sky could peek through the predicted cloud-cover on Sunday, even though forecasters are not ruling out the possibility of rain.

"We are hoping for some warmer weather," admitted Red Bull team boss Christian Horner on Saturday, after Sebastian Vettel pipped Ferrari's Fernando Alonso to pole position by the merest margin of 2 thousandths. More ...

Morgan wins wild Race 1  Cole Morgan got around Steven McAleer on a restart and held off a late-charging Daniel Erickson on a green-white-checkered finish to take his second win of the year and gain back huge championship ground in race one at Lime Rock. Morgan capitalized from a fifth-place starting position to take the win for K-Hill Motorsports and new sponsor, Ranger Up military and patriotic apparel. McAleer finished second as Daniel Erickson went off on the last lap, also vaulting Phil Lombardi to third from his seventh place starting position.

“We had a good start, I went to the left and held on,” said Morgan. “I got McAleer on the restart and then I knew Erickson was coming on the next one so as the track went green again I just took the inside line.”

Morgan grabs 47 points back on Victor Carbone, who failed to finish due to contact in his Alegra Motorsports Van Diemen. More ...

Maldonado reigns in Hockenheim  Pastor Maldonado has solidified his lead in the championship with another exhibition drive to claim his third victory of the season ahead of title rival Sergio Perez and Charles Pic, with the win set up by a storming start as the lights went out to lead his rivals all race long.

Polesitter Pic has the best opportunity to slow down the Maldonado locomotive, but a poor getaway handed the Venezuelan the lead with Perez squeezing past Oliver Turvey for second place into turn one. Behind them chaos reigned as Christian Vietoris ran over the right rear of series returnee Romain Grosjean, slowing both drivers, and the battle between Adrian Zaugg and Dani Clos was settled at the back of the circuit in the Spaniard's favor as his rival ran out of road. More ...

Mercedes at Hockenheim 'a catastrophe' - Rosberg  
Nico Rosberg and his slow Mercedes
(GMM)  While Sebastian Vettel delighted his German fans at home on Saturday, there were no smiling faces at Mercedes GP.  Although based in England, the self-proclaimed German national team had a poor qualifying session at Hockenheim, with Nico Rosberg only scraping into the top-ten.

And on the occasion of the first German grand prix featuring a works Mercedes team since 1954, Michael Schumacher was showered and changed when he spoke to the media, having failed to graduate into the final phase of qualifying.

"For us it was an absolute catastrophe," Rosberg told German television Sky.  "I don't know what was going on.

"I cannot be that I'm 1.4 seconds away from Red Bull now," he added. More ...

Schumacher admits F1 test ban 'paradox'  
Michael Schumacher
(GMM)  Michael Schumacher has admitted the "paradox" of F1's tightly restricted test rules in the context of his return to formula one.

On the one hand, he believes the lack of track running between races partly explains his struggle to get fully up to speed in 2010 after a three-year retirement.

"I can think of no other sport operating at such a high level in which one cannot test and practice," the 41-year-old, struggling particularly to adjust to the new generation of tires, is quoted by the SID news agency at Hockenheim. More ...

Edmonton eliminates its best grandstand  
Friday's attendance was larger than some of the oval track race day crowds, but was still down from the Champ Car days
Will Power and Ryan Briscoe, the two fastest drivers in practice for the Honda Indy Edmonton Friday, were dumbfounded when they took their first trips around the track.

What happened to the stands in Turn 1?

Where did they go?

Those stands, both maintain, gave the place a big part of its fabulous flavor, not just for the fans but for the drivers.

It just felt great driving into that colorful crowd before taking that first turn. More ...

Blown diffuser stays on McLarens  McLaren has elected to continue with its new blown diffuser into Saturday after testing the part during Friday practice for the German Grand Prix.

The team had hoped to run the part at Silverstone a fortnight ago before issues in practice forced McLaren to abandon those plans, with the team then working on improving the parts ahead of this weekend’s race.

Despite limited track time for Lewis Hamilton on Friday after his accident in the opening session, McLaren has now elected to continue with the part for qualifying later today and Sunday’s race in the hope of taking the fight to Red Bull. More ...

Track News
Daytona RepaveDaytona 1st asphalt laid down on track  

Another significant moment in the 2010 Daytona Repave took place on Thursday morning as the first layer of asphalt was put down on the 3,000-foot Superstretch.

The paving of the drainage layer on the Superstretch is the first of four layers of asphalt that will be put down on Daytona International Speedway’s 2.5-mile tri-oval, which is being repaved for only the second time in its history.

While new asphalt was being put down on the “World Center of Racing,” the old asphalt in the daunting Turn 3 high banks has been excavated and removed.

Here are some other notable achievements in Week 3 of the Daytona Repave project: More ...
Gordon has backup drivers lined up  With Jeff Gordon's wife, Ingrid Vandebosch, expecting the couple's second child soon, the team has lined up backup drivers for the next two weeks. From Friday's driver press conference:

Gordon: "Not this weekend, no. That's the plan for Pocono, and then Watkins Glen we've got which I'm excited about, is Scott Pruett." Chevy PR
Villeneuve wants to be in NASCAR  Jacques Villeneuve won't be 40 until April, but since leaving Formula One in 2006, he's been on the outside looking in. He'd definitely be open to returning to full-time racing if given the right opportunity. Even though his name continues to pop up in Formula One circles, he'd prefer giving stock cars a try. "I really, really enjoy driving in NASCAR," Villeneuve said. "That's why I moved back on this side of the ocean in 2006, was to concentrate on NASCAR. And it's taken a while to get going. Right now, we got Elkhart Lake going, we're coming here to the Brickyard. So it's starting to open up a little bit. It would be great if we could carry on doing more ovals." NASCAR.com
Hornaday Jr. Ends 22-race Winless Streak  The back-to-basics approach seems to work for Ron Hornaday Jr. and the No. 33 Kevin Harvick Inc. NASCAR Camping World Truck Series team.

Hornaday Jr. snapped a 22-race winless streak in the truck series Friday night, winning the AAA Insurance 200 at O'Reilly Raceway Park.

Watched by team owner Kevin Harvick, Hornaday led 129 laps and beat runner-up Kyle Busch by 2.095 seconds for his first victory since Aug. 1 of last year at Nashville Superspeedway.

Hornaday credited crew chief Ernie Cope — who rejoined the truck team while maintaining his crew chief job with the KHI NASCAR Nationwide Series group — with helping turn things around. More ...
GP3 driver penalties  The following drivers have received penalties after ignoring waved yellow flags during the practice session on Friday 23rd July:

1 A. ROSSI ART Grand Prix 2
3 P. NUNES ART Grand Prix 3
4 R. WICKENS Status Grand Prix 2
5 I. LUKASHEVICH Status Grand Prix 3
6 D. MORAD Status Grand Prix 3
7 J. JAKES Manor Racing 2
9 A. QUAIFE-HOBBS Manor Racing 3
10 N. MELKER RSC Muecke Motorsport 3
12 T. HEGEWALD RSC Muecke Motorsport 2
16 L. FORESTI Carlin 3
17 F. GUIMARAES Addax Team 5
19 M. BORTOLOTTI Addax Team 3
22 L. CORDEIRO MW Arden 3
23 P. VARHAUG Jenzer Motorsport 7
24 S. TRUMMER Jenzer Motorsport 2
26 D. SECHELARIU Tech 1 Racing 3
27 S. COLETTI Tech 1 Racing 2
28 D. JUNCADELLA Tech 1 Racing 3
30 O. OAKES Atech CRS GP 3 (+10)

*grid drops will be for the driver’s next race this afternoon at 17:20.

Pål Varhaug has received a seven spot grid penalty for ignoring waved yellows & losing control of his car within yellow flag zone.

Atech CRS GP’s Oliver Oakes has received an additional grid drop of ten spots for failing to comply with a waved red flag.

GP3: Jakes grabs pole at Hockenheim  Manor Racing’s James Jakes has claimed his first GP3 Series pole position in a dramatic wet qualifying session at Hockenheimring this morning.

The British driver posted his quickest time of 1:46.559 on his last flying lap putting him four tenths of a second ahead of second place man Status GP’s Robert Wickens. The exciting session in Germany was the first wet qualifying this season making it a challenging session for the 30 GP3 drivers, with many struggling to get to grips with the slippery conditions at turn 1.  More ...

German GP: Vettel beats Alonso in final practice  
Sebastian Vettel before the track dried
Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time on his final lap of Saturday morning's practice session for Sunday's German GP at Hockenheim, with a time of 1m15.103s.

The German's lap was 0.6s faster than Red Bull teammate Mark Webber, however it was Fernando Alonso, whose lap was only 0.284s slower than Vettel at the flag in 2nd.

Ferrari and Red Bull teams dominated the action and appear poised to take pole later today.

The session had begun wet following heavy rain in the morning, but by halfway through, a dry line emerged and the times came tumbling down. More ...

Latest F1 news in brief  
  • Kovalainen smiles at 'nice' 2011 Renault switch rumors
  • Renault engines would be good for Lotus - Kovalainen
  • Peter Sauber targets return to retirement
  • 'Many drivers' struggling with hard tires in 2010 - Massa
  • Top bosses rate teammates for newspaper article
  • Villeneuve called off Hockenheim trip for NASCAR seat

Heikki Kovalainen
Kovalainen smiles at 'nice' 2011 Renault switch rumors
(GMM)  Mike Gascoyne says he is not surprised that Heikki Kovalainen's name is being linked with a possible switch to a rival team.

"That's the first time I've heard that," the Lotus technical boss told Finland's Turun Sanomat, when asked about the rumors linking Kovalainen with a 2011 return to his former team Renault.

"Heikki has done a good job so it's no wonder someone else could be interested in him," added the Briton.

It was believed that both Kovalainen, 28, and Jarno Trulli had signed long term contracts with Lotus beginning in 2010.

Gascoyne clarifies: "It is three years, but with mutual options for each year."

According to the Finnish newspaper, Kovalainen smiled when asked about the Renault rumors.

"Rumors are always nice," he said, "but I'm concentrating on now, driving with Lotus, and this weekend." More ...

More hard rain at Hockenheim before final practice  
Robert Kubica in the wet
(GMM)  Early on Saturday morning, it was once again raining hard at Hockenheim.

Friday's practice sessions were affected by the inclement German weather, and more of the same is possible throughout Saturday, on which another hour of practice will take place before qualifying.

GP3 qualifying on Saturday morning took place on a fully wet Hockenheim circuit, while F1 personnel in the paddock ducked and dived to avoid deep puddles.

Showers, often bringing very heavy rain, are forecast throughout the morning and into the afternoon.

Currently, the forecast for Sunday is for variable cloud cover and a lower chance of afternoon rain than on Friday and Saturday. More ...

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