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DATE News (chronologically)
08/23/07
alms
SPEED to offer FREE two-screen ALMS coverage  SPEED will offer the ultimate two-screen experience this weekend in support of the American Le Mans Series Grand Prix of Mosport. With the network delivering live coverage of the event from Ontario, Canada on Sunday at 3 p.m. ET, SPEEDtv.com will offer viewers six full-time, on-board cameras FREE through the SPEED On Board Pass, with this offering presented by Acura.

The following teams will have SPEED On Board Pass cameras:

·         No. 1 Audi (Capaello/McNish) LMP 1
·         No. 7 Penske Porsche (Bernhard/Dumas) LMP 2
·         No. 9 Highcroft Acura (Brabham/Johannson) LMP 2
·         No. 15 Fernandez Lola-Acura (Fernandez/Diaz) LMP 2
·         No. 33 Corvette (Fellows/Pilgrim) GT 1
·         No. 62 Risi Ferrari (Melo/Salo) GT 2

08/23/07
cc
Meet Champ Car driver Katherine Legge  As the Champ Car World series heads to Europe for the event's next round, driver Katherine Legge, a British national, says she is excited to return to her home continent. Champ Car will head to Europe for the Belgian Grand Prix, Aug. 25 – 26, and the Bavaria Champ Car Grand Prix, Aug. 31 – Sept. 2. Legge, currently ranked fifteenth in the standings, says the European circuit proves that the Champ Car World Series is truly a global sport.

As the only woman in the Series, Legge says that while Europe was originally skeptical of female competitors, opportunities for women drivers are opening. Legge says she has changed tactics this year by focusing solely on her driving without concern for external circumstances, and she looks forward to winning a race to show everyone what she is truly made of.

In our latest video (see Home Page) hear her views:

  • On being a woman racer in the U.S. vs. Europe 
  • On the Champ Car drivers being a very tight knit group and her being the first woman to join the ‘club’ 
  • On racing in Europe 
  • On how she will approach the circuits at Zolder and Assen where she has never driven  
  • On her first impression behind the wheel of a champ car 
  • On her fitness regiment
  • On her short and long term goals
  • On her new attitude that doesn’t let her worry as much about extraneous things going on around her
  • On Robert Doornbos’ having to increase his fitness level when he came over from Europe to drive a Champ Car 
  • On why some drivers work much harder in the cockpit than others
08/23/07
alms
Fellows out for one more Mosport memory  No other name in Canada is more synonymous with excellence in sports car racing than Ron Fellows. That is especially true at Mosport International Raceway, Fellows’ home track and site of this weekend’s Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport for the American Le Mans Series. A three-time GT1 champion, Fellows will make his final Mosport start with the factory Corvette Racing squad by teaming with Andy Pilgrim in an arctic-white Corvette C6.R, a mirror image of the Ron Fellows signature edition Corvette Z06. Fellows took time to reflect on the emotions of the weekend and his feelings on Mosport.

Question: Were you surprised to see the Ron Fellows Signature Edition Corvette rolled onto the grid for Sebring?

Answer: “It’s a huge honor to have Chevrolet and Corvette do a special edition in my name to commemorate the Corvette championships and the history that I have as well as the legacy that is Corvette Racing. They did a limited number – 399 Corvette Z06s – and they’re all sold, which is very cool. I am going to get, once it’s finished touring around, serial number 001 so I’m pleased about that obviously. To have the guys do the race car up on raceday in the white with red stripes was pretty emotional but very cool. A lot of what this is about is the success that Corvette Racing has had and I just happen to be the guy who has been around the longest. The team has done a tremendous job in helping me to be a part of the championships. It’s a huge honor for me and my family to have a limited edition Corvette named after yours truly!”

Q: What led you to Mosport and obviously such a stellar sports car career?

A: “Mosport is the track I grew up learning how to race on. My first exposure to a live car race was the Canadian Grand Prix in 1969. My brother and I - I think we were 8, 9 or 10 at the time - saw the Formula 1 cars, the Formula 1600s and a sedan race. That was it and I was bitten by the bug. So there’s a lot of history for me at Mosport. Harvey Hudes, the former owner who has now passed on, provided me with some really sound advice and steered me in the direction of sports car racing. It obviously was very good advice!

It’s an awesome track. I don’t think there is a driver who says ‘I don’t like going to Mosport’ because it’s a driver’s track. With the elevation and the fast corners, they don’t make them like this any more. This certainly is a special place for me.” More ...

08/23/07
nascar
Benson wins at Bristol after leaders crash  Johnny Benson was in the right place at the right time Wednesday night at Bristol Motor Speedway to take advantage of contact between Travis Kvapil and Nextel Cup Series interloper Kyle Busch to score his second NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series win of the season.

Benson, who pitted for tires on Lap 104 of the O’Reilly 200 and restarted 17th, quickly knifed his way through the field using the inside and the outside grooves on his way back to the top five. He was riding in third and closing in on the leaders when they made contact on Lap 179 of the 200-lap race.

Kvapil had the dominant truck in the middle stages of the race, but Busch was coming on strong as the laps clicked off. He moved inside Kvapil going into Turn 1, and the truck jumped loose, sliding into Kvapil and sending them both into a synchronized spin. Benson slipped through unscathed and led the final 20 laps to ring up his seventh career NCTS victory. More ...

08/23/07
f1
Turkish GP: Thursday Press Conference  
Participating: David, Coulthard (Red Bull), Nick Heidfeld (BMW Sauber), Heikki Kovalainen (Renault), Felipe Massa (Ferrari).

Q. Heikki, a winner in GP2 here, so presumably it's quite a favourite circuit of yours.

Heikki Kovalainen: Well, I've been a winner in GP2 at many other circuits and it really hasn't worked out the same in F1, so I don't think you can look back too much but like some other circuits, I've got good memories from here. I like this circuit, they've done a very good job with the layout here, so I'm looking forward to driving F1 here as well.

Q. You must be very pleased with your reliability this year because you're the only non-McLaren driver to have finished every race so far.

HK: Yeah. It's something that's nice to hear but obviously it would have been nice to have been ahead in another statistic, for example, the number of wins or the number of poles or that kind of stuff.

But it hasn't worked out quite like that for us this year but in any case, it shows that the reliability we've also had over the last few years is still there this year, so now we just need to focus on performance and then we get back on top. More ...

08/23/07
cc
Minardi Team USA release - Trust announcement  Minardi Team USA and Robert Doornbos are pleased to announce a sponsorship agreement with Trust International, worldwide manufacturer of affordable, technological peripheral products for PCs, notebooks, iPods, MP3 players and the PSP. The Trust logo will appear prominently on Robert Doornbos’ car and race gear during the two European Champ Car World Series events in Zolder (B) and Assen (NED).

Trust International and Minardi are well known to each other. Team Co-Owner Paul Stoddart and Trust International CEO Michel Perridon have combined forces in Formula One back in 2003. Last weekend Trust International already got a first taste of their renewed cooperation at the immense crowded Bavaria City Racing event.

ROBERT DOORNBOS: “I know Michel and his company already for quite a long time. Michel has always been very enthusiastic, and has done great things for Dutch motorsport. I’m happy to have Trust’s support for the upcoming European races.”

MICHEL PERRIDON, CEO Trust International: “Robert is doing an amazing job in the USA. He developed himself into a race winner. I feel he deserves all support. Therefore we will sponsor him during these two important events. I’m proud Robert is becoming one of our ambassadors.”

08/23/07
nascar
NASCAR expects ATT off of No. 31 car  UPDATE ESPN’s Marty Smith reported on NASCAR Now that the No. 31 car will not have the AT&T logo on it this weekend for the Sharpie 500 at Bristol. The car “will be an orange and black paint scheme that was like their previous paint scheme, the Cingular paint scheme, … but there will be no logos on the hood or back deck lid or Jeff Burton’s driver suit or the team’s uniforms.”

08/23/07 With  NASCAR expects the AT&T logos to be removed from the No. 31 Richard Childress Racing car for the Nextel Cup events this weekend at Bristol Motor Speedway.

The U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a mandate Tuesday that its decision be followed that NASCAR is not legally required to allow the AT&T logos on the car driven by Jeff Burton, NASCAR spokesman Ramsey Poston said Tuesday night.

The appellate court also clarified its Aug. 13 ruling that the logo issue return to U.S. District Court in Atlanta for consideration of other legal issues other than breach of contract, Poston said.

AT&T had won the injunction on breach of contract grounds as U.S. District Court Judge Marvin Shoob ruled May 18 that NASCAR's grandfather clause in its licensing agreement that gives RCR a car number allowed for the Cingular logos to be changed to AT&T following their December 2006 merger.

But the appellate court ruled that because the grandfather clause (enacted in 2004 when Nextel became the primary sponsor of the Cup series) was designed to benefit RCR and not necessarily Cingular, that AT&T could not sue under breach of contract grounds.

Court documents indicate that AT&T plans to ask the district court to consider another injunction under the premise that NASCAR's actions indicated that a logo change was permissible and therefore it's an injustice that they cannot change them.  Scenedaily.com

08/23/07
f1
Feuding McLaren duo absent on Thursday  (GMM) Two notable absentees on Thursday at the scene of the Turkish grand prix were McLaren drivers Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton.

The day before opening practice at a grand prix is, particularly for the drivers, traditionally reserved for sponsor and media commitments.

But after their falling out in Hungary, and amid the team's central involvement in the espionage scandal and other controversies, McLaren's duo stayed in downtown Istanbul on Thursday, unlike the rest of the grand prix grid.

The decision drew the ire of the attending print and electronic media, but the Woking based team argued that there was no need for McLaren's highest profile employees to battle through thick traffic on the lengthy journey from their hotels to the circuit.

Instead, on the other side of the famous Bosphorus Bridge in the sprawling Turkish city, Alonso and Hamilton reportedly met - in the presence of key team personnel - to clear the air following their code of silence that began in Budapest some three weeks ago.

08/23/07
f1
Toyota confirms F1 factory fire  (GMM) Toyota on Thursday confirmed that a fire broke out at its formula one factory in Cologne earlier this week.

A spokesman for the Japanese marque said the incident occurred in Germany on Wednesday morning following an engine failure and oil spillage on a test stand.

"Not only no one was injured but there was very little damage to report," the team said.

Toyota added that although the local fire brigade was summoned, the factory's own systems and staff brought the blaze under control.
08/23/07
f1
Fire at Toyota F1 factory  (GMM) The fire department in Cologne on Wednesday was summoned to put out a fire at Toyota's formula one factory.

According to local reports, an engine test stand - connected to a current 2.4-litre V8 power plant - caught fire for unknown reasons.

Toyota's fire alarm system automatically alerted the local fire department, and the blaze had been extinguished also by the team's own systems by the time they arrived.

The fire did not cause significant damage.
08/23/07
f1
Alonso urged to stay at McLaren  Fernando Alonso should stay at McLaren and show Lewis Hamilton who is the better driver, says one of the key men behind Michael Schumacher's success.

Hostilities between the Spaniard and Briton will resume on Sunday when Istanbul hosts the Turkish Grand Prix.

And following the controversial Hungarian GP, won by Hamilton after Alonso was demoted from pole position for deliberately delaying his teammate in the pit lane during the climax to qualifying, there is bound to be tension between them.

Alonso reacted in Hungary after Hamilton ignored team instructions to let the Spaniard overtake earlier in that crucial qualifying session. Incensed by everything that happened in Budapest, Alonso was then reported to be looking for means to end his three-year contract with McLaren after just one season with the team. Daily Mail
08/23/07
f1
Latest F1 news in brief   
  • A busy August for Spyker
  • Red Bull may help Liuzzi rescue career
  • Father 'sure' Ralf will keep F1 seat
  • Herbert calls off powerboat debut

A busy August for Spyker
(GMM)  Struggling team Spyker had arguably a busier 'summer break' than any of its formula one rivals this month.

The Dutch squad, beset by speculation of financial difficulties and a possible team sale, was also busily preparing the long-awaited 'B' 2007 car, which will debut in Turkey.

With Fairuz Fauzy at the wheel of its predecessor, Spyker also did a short aerodynamic test at Santa Pod (UK) earlier this month, as well as heading to Rotterdam for demonstration runs at the Bavaria City Racing event.

Finally, Adrian Sutil completed a 50km shakedown - permitted even during the August testing ban - with the 'B' car on the short Silverstone layout.

The German rookie said: "It was difficult to get a feel for the car as it was raining very hard.

"I also knew that we had to take care of the car, stay on the track and not take any risks."

Red Bull may help Liuzzi rescue career
(GMM)  Red Bull could also come to the rescue of Tonio Liuzzi's flagging motor sport career.

Following Scott Speed's earlier falling out with junior team Toro Rosso's bosses, long time backer Red Bull vowed to help the 24-year-old Californian kick start a new career in NASCAR.

And Helmut Marko, who is Red Bull magnate Dietrich Mateschitz's right-hand racing man, said he would now look into also trying to help Speed's former STR teammate Liuzzi recover from his looming team exit.

Italian Liuzzi, 26, revealed recently that he is already talks with several formula one teams regarding 2008 and would not rule out stepping back into a testing-only role.

"I'm also looking to the USA, more at Champ Car than Indy," he added. More ...

08/23/07
f1
Q and A with Spyker's Colin Kolles  
Q: It's been a busy few weeks for the team.

Spyker F1 team principal, Colin Kolles: "It's not been so much of a break for our team; work has continued on the new B-spec car, both in the factory, wind tunnel and also on the track.

"Under the current testing regulations we could only complete a 50km shakedown with the new car, but we were able to gain a lot of information that should help us in our ongoing development cycle.

"We also completed a demonstration run in Bavaria City Racing in Rotterdam and an aerodynamic test with Fairuz Fauzy. All in all, not too much time to take a holiday!

Q: Christijan Albers drove the Spyker F8-VII in Rotterdam. Is this an indication of an ongoing relationship with the team?

Kolles: "Christijan is a very popular driver in Holland and the demonstration would not have been the same without him.

"He was a complete professional in the event and everyone, the team, Christijan himself and the fans all benefited from his appearance, but this should not be taken as a sign of any change in the situation.

"For 2007 we are now committed to our driver line-up of Adrian Sutil and Sakon Yamamoto." More ...

08/23/07
f1
Q and A with Spyker’s Adrian Sutil  
Q: Hungary saw a turning point for both you and the team. Were you pleased with the result?

Adrian Sutil: "I think Hungary was one of the best results of the season as we finished in front of a works team.

"For sure we have had some other good races this year, for example Indianapolis, where we have been able to get and stay close to the others but this last race was one of the best."

Q: Did you feel any extra pressure having a car chasing hard behind you for most of the race?

Sutil: "No not really. I knew that I had a little bit more speed than the Honda and I could always keep a three to four second gap.

"At the Hungaroring it's always difficult to overtake too so I knew that all I had to do was keep concentrated on what I had to do and not make any mistakes."

Q: Have you ever driven in Istanbul before?

Sutil: "No, this will be the first time I have been to the circuit. As usual I have been studying the data trying to learn the track and doing laps on the PlayStation to try and get the right lines.

"In the end learning a circuit is not so difficult as there are always come corners that are similar to other tracks you've driven on. More ...

08/23/07
f1
Q and A with Spyker’s Sakon Yamamoto  
Q: Now two weeks on from your Spyker debut in Hungary, how would you review this weekend?

Sakon Yamamoto: "As the Hungarian Grand Prix was my first time with the team, and the first time I had driven a Formula One car since I decided to go back to GP2, I needed to learn the car and get to know the people involved.

"It was good for me, first of all I really appreciated everyone's work to support me, and I was happy with the progress I made.

"I didn't feel any issues when I stepped into the team, everyone is very professional and knows what they should do, which made it very easy to concentrate on my job.

Q: How did you find the F8-VII?

Yamamoto: "We know we have issues on the car that we have to improve but generally I didn't get any strange feelings from the car and I felt it was basically good. I'm now looking forward to the B spec."

Q: You said you had a bit of discomfort in the car in Hungary, have you made any changes to feel more comfortable?

Yamamoto: "Of course every time I drive a new car, whether Formula 1, Formula 3 or GP2, the seat fit is very important, but it takes time to get it right. More ...

08/23/07
cc
Champ Car stars gather in Brussels  While the drivers in the Champ Car World Series drive the latest state-of-the-art Champ Car DP01 Cosworth-powered chassis in 2007, the entire driving line-up will get the chance to meet the local press today with a unique, significantly older backdrop. AutoRacing1.com will be on-site to capture all the action.

All 17 drivers will be on hand at Autoworld Brussels, a spectacular museum with a collection of more than 400 vintage automobiles dating from 1886 to the 1970s.

The press conference will commence today at 11.00am with the public getting the chance to get an autograph from their favorite driver 12.00noon to 12.30pm.

Back at the track, the Champ Car World Series crews will be completing final preparations and setting up for the weekend before the drivers return at 3.00pm to do their customary track walk.

08/22/07
industry news
Texas shop to revive DeLorean cars  In a nondescript warehouse north of Houston, mechanic and entrepreneur Stephen Wynne is bringing a rare sports car back to life. If he succeeds, he almost certainly has Michael J. Fox to thank.

A quarter century after DeLorean Motor Co. began making its glitzy, $25,000 two-seater — an operation that collapsed after two years — Wynne's small automotive outfit plans to bring the vehicle back into limited production at a 40,000-square-foot factory.

In his factory outside Houston, Stephen Wynne plans to produce new DeLoreans for the first time in decades. Wynne repairs the cars and bought the remaining parts from the company that once provided them to him. Now, he's president of the new version of the DeLorean Motor Co. More ...

08/22/07
alms
Porsche looks to clinch at Mosport  Riding a seven-race class winning streak – including six straight overall wins – the Porsche RS Spyder prototypes will head north of the border to Mosport International Raceway this Sunday in hopes of wrapping up the LMP2 class engine and chassis manufacturers title for 2007.

The Grand Prix of Mosport will get the green flag on Sunday, August 26, at 3:00 PM Eastern Daylight time, and will be telecast live on the SPEED Channel. Race fans can also keep track of the activity from Mosport all weekend on their computers, with American Le Mans Series live time and scoring as well as audio commentary starting Friday, August 24 at www.americanlemans.com. The same site will have the full live broadcast of the race over the American Le Mans Radio Web on Sunday.

Uwe Brettel, president of Porsche Cars North America, pointed out that all four Porsche RS Spyders on the track this season have contributed to these impending championships, not just the Penske Porsche responsible for the victories. More ...

08/22/07
ips
irl
Lloyd, Prendeville test IndyCar Series machines  Indy Pro Series drivers Alex Lloyd (pictured right) and Andrew Prendeville got their first taste of an IndyCar Series car on Aug. 16. Lloyd, the series points leader, tested with Target Chip Ganassi Racing at Sebring International Raceway while Prendeville tested with Rahal Letterman Racing at Infineon Raceway.

"Everything went really well," said Lloyd, who has won seven Indy Pro Series races this season and can clinch the championship at Infineon Raceway Aug. 25-26. "I got to run for a couple hours after lunch, two sets of tires. It was a pretty great thing to be able to run with the Target Chip Ganassi Racing team and especially alongside Scott (Dixon), who is arguably the best road course driver out there. I put down some good times, the pace was pretty strong.

"I got as much out of the test as I think I could have, learned as much as I could from Scott and the engineers. Having done this test, I confirmed to myself that I'm capable of running up front in these cars. Now, I'm that much more prepared for my next opportunity to test one of these cars." More ...

08/22/07
ips
Chesson teams with Roth, Dussault Apparel  P.J. Chesson expects the two Roth Racing cars to "turn some heads" during the PEAK Antifreeze Indy 300 presented by Mr. Clean on Sept. 9 at Chicagoland Speedway.

He was referring to being competitive in the IndyCar Series season finale, but easily could have been citing the "Dussault Green Monster" livery design on the Honda-powered Dallaras.

Chesson, who has made four IndyCar Series and 12 Indy Pro Series starts, has been named by team owner Marty Roth as the driver of the No. 73 car for the race on the 1.5-mile oval. Roth will make his fourth start of the season in the No. 25 car.

Dussault Apparel Inc., whose new Monster line of hoodies is the inspiration and main element of the car design, is the primary sponsor. The program includes a "Name the Dussault Green Monster" contest through Sept. 6 on indycar.com. More ...

08/22/07
irl
Alex Lloyd eyes move up to Indy Cars  Darren Manning and Alex Lloyd were the featured guests on today's Indy Racing League teleconference.  Lloyd, who is on the verge of clinching the Indy Pro Series championship on the strength of a series-record seven wins, spoke about his recent IndyCar Series test with Target Chip Ganassi Racing and his plans for 2008.

Q. Ultimately the role of the Pro Series is to give guys the opportunity to move up to the next level. Last week, you had an opportunity to test an IndyCar. Tell us about that.
ALEX LLOYD: "It's been an amazing couple of weeks for me. I got my first IndyCar test at Sebring, and that was very special for me, especially racing with Chip Ganassi Racing. They're one of the biggest teams in the IndyCar Series, and one I've always dreamt of driving for.
"To get a call from them saying, 'We want to put you in our car alongside Scott Dixon," and you go out there, and I've got an opportunity to show the best team out there and share a car with one of the best guys out there and show them what I can do, and I have an opportunity to learn as much as I can off these guys, that was a great experience. The car is a fantastic car to drive.

"I think one of the things I learned from this is that these cars, the Indy Pro Series, prepares you well for the IndyCar Series. I felt completely at home when I got in the car. Obviously there's more horsepower, more grip, but it only took me a handful of laps before I was right there and feeling competitive, and then I spent the rest of my time learning and working on the car to suit my driving style.

"So that's, again, one of the greatest things the Pro Series is there for is to train drivers, and for me it's done a great job. Great to have done that test now, and I'm looking forward to more tests."

Q. Alex, got anything planned for next year to move up into the (IndyCar) Series? 
ALEX LLOYD: "There is a lot of interest at the moment. We're really    you know, I'm not rushing into anything too much at the moment. I'm just waiting to see what's around the corner. But like I say, the great thing is I've had a lot of people call me up, asking me what my plans are, and I'm just going to wait and see how things unfold and try and pick the best ride that's available for me.

"I've got a lot of confidence that I'll be in the IndyCar Series next year, where is still a little bit unknown but for me. It's important to try and get myself in a race winning car so I can compete and try and get some race wins. We'll see where we end up, but so far things are looking promising."

Manning, who joined A.J. Foyt Racing this season talked about how the team is taking 2007 as a building year.

Q. You mentioned the results this year aren't quite what you were hoping for, but do you feel you're laying the groundwork for next year? 
DARREN MANNING: "Absolutely. It literally has been. It's been, "I wish we could start the weekend over again right now. It's been very difficult to carry anything over. Some of the big changes at the beginning of the year from Homestead to Motegi to Indy was a big learning curve for us; those things carry forward. But we got to a stage after Indy trying to get the fine tuning settled on the car, and that last little bit of speed, which is nearly impossible to do.

"We always would finish the weekend saying, at least we know we're going to be alright next year when we come back to these tracks, and it's not very good to be saying that but, you know, we've got to look at where they're coming from over the last few years of parking the car nearly every other weekend because of set ups and speed and crashes.

"If you look at it on paper, from where they're coming from, we're right to be looking at it as a building year, and that's pretty much what we're doing, and when we get our chances, we are racing right up front with them."

08/22/07
irl
Patrick sponsor continues to lose marketshare  Ed Zander could come under renewed pressure to step down as chief executive of Motorola (Danica Patrick's sponsor) on Thursday as new figures showed the handset maker lost more than seven percentage points of market share during the second quarter.

Motorola narrowly maintained its position as second-largest handset manufacturer – but its share of global sales fell to 14.6 per cent, from 21.9 per cent a year ago, according to estimates by Gartner, a research company.

Samsung, the world’s number three, increased its share to 13.4 per cent, gaining prime position to overhaul its US rival. “It will be interesting to see what Samsung can do in the third and fourth quarters. Samsung has been bringing in more mid-tier handsets and cutting prices on older phones faster to help build market share,” said Carolina Milanesi, an analyst at Gartner.

US analysts and IDC, a rival market research firm that published global handset sales figures this month, reckon Samsung passed Motorola in the second quarter. US analysts also reckon Motorola’s market share may dip further before stabilizing when handset models to include the 3G Razr2 are launched in many markets in the next months.

08/22/07
irl
Power steering could help Danica  This story talks about 100% throttle IRL drivers asking for power steering on road courses because their arms are so weak from lack of use on the ovals. The article talks about how much it would help the female drivers like little Danica Patrick. However, we see no mention of weighing the driver with the car so that lightweight drivers like Danica don't have a 50 or more pound weight advantage. It's astonishing that the IRL allows this hole in their rules to continue. It's the one of the biggest faux pas' in all of sports. It's analogous to the Ganassi team pushing Scott Dixon's car through the IRL tech inspection line 50+ pounds under weight (so driver+car it equals Danica's weight + her car) to see if it passes. We guess the IRL will have to do everything they can to help her eventually win a race, and if that includes adding power steering so be it.
08/22/07
nascar
MIS fans show their loyalty  Neither rain, nor fog, nor the threat of missing work or school could keep Michigan International Speedway’s race fans away Tuesday.

Race fans turned out in droves to attend the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series 3M Performance 400 two days past its scheduled date. Persistent rain postponed the race not once, but twice. The race was scheduled to run Sunday, Aug. 19, but finally got under way Tuesday.

“No other sports fans in the world are like NASCAR fans,” speedway President Roger Curtis said. “They battled postponements, long, cold days in the rain and mud. They even battled fog. Other sports fans would have thrown in the towels and umbrellas long before Tuesday.”

3M Performance 400 race winner Kurt Busch agreed. “For all the fans to be here on a Tuesday — I’m sure some of them might not have a job when they show up for work tomorrow morning,” Busch said. “There’s some diehard fans in this area … The heart that NASCAR fans have and their drive to be out here and give up a little family time or whatever it might have been, to see them here at the track was incredible. And to have a great finish like we did, going all the way to a green-white-checkered, the fans got their money’s worth.” More ...

08/22/07
cc
Depth added at Dale Coyne Racing  Plainfield, Illinois….. Dale Coyne Racing has expanded its engineering team in preparation for the European swing.  After a season that has seen solid performances by Bruno Junqueira and Katherine Legge, Dale Coyne Racing has made some additions and reorganized to its Engineering staff.

Joining the team will be engineer David Morgan of Warlingham, England.  David brings an extensive background, working with the Coyne team in several previous seasons.  David is not only an accomplished engineer, but also enjoyed a great driving career that included a Formula 1 race at Silverstone in 1975.  In 2005, David was part of the engineering staff that saw Robert Kubica dominate the World Formula Renault Championship.  Earlier this year, Mr. Morgan lent his support to Dale Coyne Racing for the Toronto event as well as subsequent shaker rig and track testing.  “We have worked with David on many projects and with several drivers over the years.  I am excited to have him back on board with us to continue the exciting season that Bruno is enjoying,” commented team owner Dale Coyne.

David Morgan will be chief engineer on Bruno Junqueira’s #19 Sonny’s Bar-B-Q entry starting this weekend in Zolder, Belgium.  “David was with us at Toronto, and I really like what he brings to the team,” commented driver Bruno Junqueira.  More ...

08/22/07
Racing News
SPEED Weekly Top 20 Driver Ranking  
Updated 8-22-07
Pos.  (LW) Driver (Series)                      Pts
1. (1) Lewis Hamilton (F1)                      8.241
2. (2) Sebastien Bourdais (CCWS)                8.172
3. (11) Kurt Busch (NASCAR)                     7.762
4. (5) Scott Dixon (IRL)                        7.661
5. (6) Tony Kanaan (IRL)                        7.602
6. (3) Tony Stewart (NASCAR)                    7.466
7. (10) Matt Kenseth (NASCAR)                   7.254
8. (8) Denny Hamlin (NASCAR)                    7.243
9. (9) Carl Edwards (NASCAR)                    6.953
10. (12) Martin Truex Jr. (NASCAR)              6.888
11. (7) Kyle Busch (NASCAR)                     6.742
12. (4) Jeff Gordon (NASCAR)                    6.659
13. (13) Fernando Alonso (F1)                   6.644
14. (14) Kimi Raikkonen (F1)                    6.642
15. (16) Jimmie Johnson (NASCAR)                6.628
16. (17) Dario Franchitti (IRL)                 6.486
17. (NR) Jeff Burton (NASCAR)                   6.214
18. (15) Clint Bowyer (NASCAR)                  6.199
19. (23) Kevin Harvick (NASCAR)                 6.178
20. (20) Casey Mears (NASCAR)                   6.031

Dropped out: Greg Biffle (NASCAR), Ryan Newman (NASCAR)

Provided by STATS Inc.
Current year results, last 10 races, last five races and last race are factored in equally, with an adjustment factor to compensate for the series different scoring systems. In addition, a competition difficulty factor has been included to balance the competitive depth of each series

08/22/07
f1
Alonso to join Swiss football team  (GMM) World champion Fernando Alonso looks set to follow in Michael Schumacher's footsteps by joining a local Swiss football team.

The French language Swiss newspaper '24 Heures' reports on Wednesday that the 26-year-old, who lives locally with his wife, last week practiced for the first time with Prangins FC; a third division club whose local pitch overlooks Lake Geneva.

Alonso moved to Switzerland late last year, and now lives in a villa in Mont-Sur-Rolle -- mere kilometers from Schumacher's Swiss home.

Seven time world champion Schumacher plays for FC Echichens; another Swiss third division club.

A friend of Alonso's said: "His goal is to be able to play simply, first of all to stay in shape, and to play a sport at the heart of a team."

08/22/07
cc
Notes from Belgium  While the Champ Car drivers are spread around Europe doing PR appearances, AutoRacing1.com staff is in Brussels taking in the sights and sounds of this historic city before Thursday’s presentation of drivers to the Belgian media. More on that later. Despite the rain, that is supposed to clear out by Friday, we are doing our best to capture the moment.

Brussels is real 'Old Europe' - "open, friendly and welcoming," and people actually look you in the eye and smile. From what we can see, life between the busy boulevards is relaxed, yet focused.

Central to historic Brussels is Grand 'Place (Grote Markt - Market Square), the best preserved medieval townscape in all of Europe. "One of the most beautiful town squares in Europe, if not in the world", is a phrase often heard when visitors in Brussels try to describe the beauty of the central market square. French-speakers refer to it as the 'Grand-Place', whereas in Dutch it is called 'de Grote Markt'.

First established on a marsh in the 11 AD. the market soon evolved to become the city's political, economic and social nerve center. The bombardment by the French on August 13-14, 1695 wrought havoc with its buildings, nearly all of which were subsequently rebuilt. The Place has thus preserved all its old magnificence and its original happy blend of Gothic and Baroque.

Little specialty shops to purchase famous Belgian Lace and Belgian chocolates line the cobblestone alleys that run off from the Grand Place, full of little restaurants. We plan on staying here well into the evening to sample the magic atmosphere and lights that dazzle the buildings.

One thing we can tell you without hesitation, you have not had a real Belgian waffle with Belgian ice cream unless you have one here in Belgium. Marvelous. Simply marvelous. Mark C. reporting from Brussels


08/22/07
cc
Champ Car European Adventure Day 3  It’s Day 3 in Europe and though a light rain is falling at Circuit Zolder, spirits are still high. Champ Car drivers are spread across the Continent promoting both events and below is just a sampling of the coverage they are generating in Europe. 

HITTING THE BRITISH AIRWAVES

In London on Tuesday, the dastardly duo of Justin Wilson and Katherine Legge stopped in for a chat with Globecast Radio’s John Hindhaugh, host of the weekly Midweek Motorsports show, which runs every Wednesday night at 8 p.m. U.K. time (those not in the U.K. can listen on the web at www.0157.org ). “The weather’s just the same when we left it here,” Wilson quipped at the beginning of the show.

“I really love the variety of Champ Car,” Legge explained when asked to discuss the difference between Champ Car and Formula One. “Different courses, different challenges. Plus, it’s fun.” Added Wilson: “I’d say it’s more relaxed. Yes, it’s serious racing, but it’s more open, relaxed, the fans get to be close to the drivers and racing.” More ...

08/22/07
f1
We must calm things down - Haug  The Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Team will sit down with both Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso prior to the Turkish Grand Prix weekend. Since the qualifying incident in Hungary, the relationship between the two drivers has been turbid.   Norbert Haug declared in the German magazine 'Auto, Motor und Sport': "It will be important to calm things down in our team. In Turkey we will sit down together with both drivers to talk about the current situation."
08/22/07
gp2
GP2 - Glock under pressure  The GP2 Series returns to racing ways this weekend at Istanbul Park, on the outskirts of Istanbul, Turkey, for round eight of the 2007 championship. This season’s championship battle is turning into yet another closely fought contest and with four rounds remaining until the battles are decided, there is still all to play for, everything to gain and just as much to lose…

Last year’s action will be remembered not so much for Nelson Piquet’s dominant Race 1 master class or Andi Zuber’s debut GP2 win on Sunday, as it will for Lewis Hamilton’s incredible second position in Race 2 having spun to the back of the field on the second lap of the race. His drive that day still rates, in Lewis’ own words, as one of the defining moments of his career.

One of the men who put up the sternest challenges to the seemingly unstoppable Briton at this track 12 months ago was Timo Glock, and it seems fitting that we arrive back in Istanbul with the German still leading a championship he has commanded from the off. His title-leading gap has waned of late however, and his great rival Lucas di Grassi now sits just one point behind. More ...

08/22/07
track news
Manzanita sold to Martin Family  PHOENIX, Ariz. — Manzanita Speedway, the oldest continuously operated sports facility in the Phoenix area has changed hands for only the fourth time in its 56-year history.
 
Local business man Mel Martin and his son Bobby assumed control of the track located at 35th Avenue and West Broadway Aug. 15 and immediately announced their plan for improvements for the track, including a new frontstretch catch fence that was started immediately.

The Martins plan to remove all the wooden bleachers during the off-season and replace them with aluminum seats. They also plan to coat the parking lot with crushed asphalt and that project will be started in the very near future.

08/22/07
f1
Kimi back on track with Ferrari improvements  The short holidays in August for the Formula One teams are over and tomorrow they all meet in Istanbul for the start of the upcoming Turkish GP, the twelfth race of the season 2007. This is true also for Kimi Raikkonen. "The holidays are over and they were as I hoped them to be: I enjoyed the Finnish summer with my family and my best friends," said Kimi.

"We went to the sea, did some motocross, played tennis and, the most important thing, chilled out. Now I'm ready to get back on the track. We have to confront the last part of the season, the one in which everything will be decided. There are three races in four weeks, plus a test: this is certain to be a very busy period, but we are racing on tracks, which are amongst my favorites - Istanbul, Monza and Spa-Francorchamps. I think that these are tracks where Ferrari should be very competitive: there are no characteristics, that are against us. The whole team is working together, to try to recuperate the gap in the points: in Maranello they didn't stop working over the last days! I spoke to the technicians and they told me that we have a couple of new developments in the car."

With two thirds of the championship behind him, Kimi is able to make a first summary of his experiences at Ferrari:

"As I said immediately after Hungary on the occasion of the Shell event in Helsinki, there is great harmony inside the team: now I understand the difference between being a driver for Ferrari as compared to the other teams. We only concentrate on what we have to do, 100 percent. I will confront these last races in the same spirit I confronted the ones before: I'll try to win and collect as many points as possible and then we will do the math in the classification. We have to give our best and hope that those who are ahead of us, have slight problems: I don't have much to lose so I can risk more than my colleagues at McLaren. Six races can seem to be only a few, but for the ones who are leading it's a lot. We were able to see that over the last weekend at the Rally of Germany, where Gronholm paid a high price for a bad day. We are optimistic for Turkey: I won the first race ever held here, which gave me a very special feeling. The track is similar to the one at Silverstone and Spa-Francorchamps, where the aerodynamic efficiency counts a lot. And then we drive anti-clockwise: nothing changes in terms of the techniques, but the driver's necks will suffer slightly. Everybody is talking about turn number 8: it doesn't have the fascination of the Eau Rouge but is very demanding in it's own way. It is really nice to have new kinds of fast corners to drive through at the max: everybody always wants to have more. I can't wait for Friday morning so that I can drive my laps behind the wheel of my Ferrari!"

08/22/07
f1
Massa: "I hope we end the season in style"  "The summer break is nearly over and although I've had a great time, I am really looking forward to going racing again, starting with Sunday's Turkish Grand Prix. Of course there is the serious side of trying to win the championships, but I have to say I am also looking forward to the enjoyment of driving a Formula 1 car again.

"I am in Miami now, having come here from Brazil last Thursday and I will be leaving for Turkey on Tuesday. I've had a long weekend here relaxing enjoying the warm climate and doing the usual holiday things, going to the beach. I say relaxing, but I have of course had to think about my fitness and every day, I have been doing a work-out to make sure I stay fit and do not lose condition before the final races of the year. Miami is a popular place for Brazilians, but I have not seen so many this time as August is just a normal working month back home: one month earlier and this place would have been full of Brazilians!

"I am looking forward to Turkey, which will always have a special significance for me, as it was in Istanbul last year that I got my first ever Grand Prix victory. It is still fresh in my mind and it is a great memory and a nice feeling to be carrying back with me to this year's race. It was a great victory for me. I love the track and the city and I really hope to repeat the great result from last year, when I was very strong all weekend, starting from pole position and winning on Sunday. I hope we can do it again. Istanbul Park is a really great track and everyone talks about Turn 8, which is definitely one of the best corners of the season. I like this corner, and it is really challenging. To be quick at this point on the track, your entry has to be perfect and then you have to make sure you make no mistakes all the way through the middle and then the exit. It is a tricky corner to get right and it also plays an important part in the race itself as it is very tough physically to go round it quickly on every lap.

"I have been keeping in touch with my engineer back in Italy to find out how things are going. The team has had a chance to rest a bit but there has been a lot of hard work going on as well in the factory. In fact, for this race, I will have a new chassis, which is not especially significant, as it is normal for us to change chassis after a certain number of races.

"Turkey last year I was a first time race winner and in the space of twelve months things have changed as I am now chasing a title. As a team, we try and have a package that is competitive at every circuit, but Istanbul is the first of a series of quick tracks and I think these will suit us particularly well. Last year, from Turkey onwards I had a great championship, so that is an encouraging sign. In fact, I like the all the tracks that are coming up now, so I hope we end the season in style."

08/22/07
nascar
COT to test at Atlanta in Oct  Nextel Cup Series teams will test at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Oct. 29-30 (Monday-Tuesday). The two-day test will be with the Car of Tomorrow only and will run the two days following the Pep Boys Auto 500, scheduled for Oct. 28 at the speedway. Teams will test from 9 a.m.-noon and 1-5 p.m. on both days. The test fills in for the previously scheduled May 14-15 test at Dover International Speedway that was cancelled. The cancellation resulted from the Darlington Raceway event scheduled for May 12 being postponed until May 13 due to inclement weather. The next scheduled Nextel Cup Series test is Sept. 10-11 at Talladega Superspeedway. AMS/NASCAR PR
08/22/07
cc
Zolder presents new challenge for Bridgestone  
Race Details: Timed event - 1 hour, 45 minutes. Track distance is 2.449 miles (3.941 kilometers).

Television Broadcast: Live - Sunday, August 26, at 8 a.m. EDT on ESPN Classic.

Bridgestone Potenza Tires Supplied:

* Primary (black-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 490, each car gets seven sets.
* Alternate (red-sidewall) dry-condition slicks: 158, each car gets two sets.
* Wet-condition (rain) tires: 385 with tread pattern, each car gets four sets.
* In a normal dry-condition race, each car must use at least one set of primary and one set of alternate Potenzas. The primary and alternate tires' construction is identical, but the alternates possess a tread compound with better grip ("softer"), making them faster but possibly not quite as durable.

Bridgestone Motorsport is bringing its highly durable and moderate-grip primary road course Potenza specification, along with our highest-grip road course spec for the alternates. The wet-condition tire is the new-for-this-season, durable rain tire, referred to as the "road course rain."  The tires are the same specifications used previously this year at Cleveland, Mont-Tremblant and Edmonton.

From Al Speyer, Executive Director, Bridgestone Motorsport: "These two new courses in Europe, Zolder and Assen, present a challenge to the Bridgestone Motorsport team.  But it's one we're looking forward to, along with everyone else in the Champ Car World Series!  While we do not have any experience on this particular track, the Bridgestone Potenza tire specifications we have selected for this event have been proven on other road courses this season, so from that standpoint, both our engineers and the drivers should know what to expect.  This European swing has been much-anticipated - especially this first round at Zolder as Bridgestone Europe is based in Belgium - and we are looking forward to showing them what Champ Car is all about." Bridgestone PR

08/22/07
cc
Team Australia drivers return to Zolder  Team Australia is taking a history of success into the Grand Prix of Zolder for Round 11 of the Champ Car World Series in Heusden-Zolder, Belgium this weekend.

Team Australia driver Will Power scored pole position around the Zolder circuit in 2005 while racing for Carlin Motorsport in the World Series by Renault. Later that year Power was signed by Team Australia to pilot the Aussie Vineyards Champ Car with his debut coming on the streets of the Gold Coast in his native Australia in October.

Power was the pacesetter that weekend at his last visit to Zolder but mechanical problems prevented him from finishing the race. This weekend Power hopes to put the frustration of a mechanical failure at the last round in Elkhart Lake behind him with a win at Zolder’s first-ever Champ Car event. More ...
08/21/07
F1
Q and A with Toyota’s Pascal Vasselon  In the following interview, Panasonic Toyota racing’s technical director, Pascal Vasselon has looked ahead to the upcoming Turkish Grand Prix, round twelve of the 2007 Formula One championship season and explains that the Cologne based squad is confident that they continue with their positive improvements displayed in recent races.

Q. Looking ahead to Turkey how much confidence does Ralf’s sixth place in Hungary give the team?

Pascal Vasselon - Toyota Racing's Technical Director: The team did a good job in Hungary and Ralf had strong race pace. It was also our best qualifying so far this season and so we can be reasonably happy with how things went. For the first time one of our cars went into Q3 with just one flying lap in Q2, so clearly we were in good shape. We did a lot of work around the tyres because tyre management was the key issue and we made the right decision on strategy in the race. Hopefully we can continue in a similar manner in Turkey.

Q. Do you expect tyres to be so important in Istanbul?

PV: There will be different factors involved. Tyres were the story of the Hungarian weekend because, so far this season, the tyre specifications that we are using, especially the prime, are usually conservative. Sometimes the option creates some problems but in Hungary even the prime had some issues with graining and the option even more. In Turkey we are back to the conservative end of Bridgestone’s compound range so there should be no outstanding tyre issues. It will be, however, all about Turn 8. More ...

08/21/07
ALMS
Corvette Racing enters three C6.Rs at Mosport  Three Compuware Corvette C6.Rs will be vying for the GT1 title in the Grand Prix of Mosport to be contested at Mosport International Raceway in Bowmanville, Ontario, on Sunday, August 26. Former teammates Ron Fellows and Andy Pilgrim will be reunited for the ninth round of the American Le Mans Series at the famed Canadian track near Fellows' home in Mississauga, Ontario. The pair will drive the No. 33 Corvette in bright Arctic White that celebrates the limited edition Ron Fellows ALMS GT1 Champion Corvette Z06. They'll race alongside Corvette Racing regulars Johnny O'Connell and Jan Magnussen in the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R and Oliver Gavin and Olivier Beretta in the No. 4 Compuware Corvette C6.R on the fast 2.45-mile circuit. More ...
08/21/07
IPS
Hildebrand joins RLR/Andersen Racing  J.R. Hildebrand, who won 12 races last year to run away with the Formula Ford 2000 championship, will make his Indy Pro Series debut with RLR/Andersen Racing in the doubleheader at Infineon Raceway Aug. 25-26.

The partnership will reunite the 19-year-old with Dominic and Nicholas Cape, who engineered his championship effort in 2006. "I'm really excited about the opportunity that (team co-owner) Dan Andersen has given me to race at my home track and extremely excited to work with the Capes again," said Hildebrand, who hails from nearby Sausalito, Calif. "We combined for a lot of success in the Formula 2000 series. I think I'll be able to slip right into the team easily."

Hildebrand tested with the RLR/Andersen team at Infineon Aug. 16.Everything went very well, and the Capes and I are very optimistic about our chances with both Andrew (Prendeville) and J.R. at Infineon," team manager John Andersen said. More ...

08/21/07
IRL
Franchitti, Castroneves and Kanaan fined  Three of IndyCar racing’s top drivers will receive fines when they arrive at the next race, at Infineon Raceway.

Brian Barnhart, the chief steward of the IndyCar Series, said Dario Franchitti, Helio Castroneves and likely Tony Kanaan will be punished for their driving in the Meijer Indy 300. Franchitti will be fined for running into the back of Kosuke Matsuura after the checkered flag. Barnhart said the veteran should have been paying attention.

Castroneves and Kanaan will be cited for making contact with each other late in the race. Barnhart, who called it unsportsmanlike conduct, said Castroneves was more to blame because he was a lap down and Kanaan was slightly in front of him. Recent precedent suggests the amount will be $25,000 per driver. AutoWeek

08/21/07
alms
Rick Mayer's inside track on Mosport  As he has all season, Risi Competizione technical manager Rick Mayer offers his unique insight as to what it takes to be successful on the various venues in the American Le Mans Series. In advance of this weekend’s Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport, Mayer talks about the keys to being successful at Mosport International Raceway, one of the fastest tracks on the schedule.
 
The Track
“Mosport is a 2.46-mile track (a quick lap was 1:18 for GT2 in 2006) with mostly high-speed corners. It was bumpy before the repave four years ago; the current surface is more undulating then bumpy as the pavement was put over the existing surface without any track grinding.

“The grip varies through the corner as you go from asphalt to concrete apex patches and back to asphalt. This makes the high-grip line different then the geometrical ideal line. When these conditions are compounded with rain, the line for grip changes once again.

“Last year we saw 260 Kph (160 mph) on the uphill backstraight and it should be the same this year. Curbs don’t really come into play here as they’re not very usable; this may change as our damper package has improved this year. You don’t want to go off track here as there isn’t a lot of runoff for the speed of the corners; if you go off track the car is usually damaged.” More ...

08/21/07
alms
Leitzinger counts Mosport as one of favorites  Butch Leitzinger’s affinity for Mosport International Raceway can be traced back to his father Bob’s days at Mosport as a racer in IMSA, now the sanctioning body of the American Le Mans Series. Bob Leitzinger won the 1989 IMSA GTU championship and was third in 1991 and 1992, finishing just behind his son.

“I don’t think there’s anyone who doesn’t like Mosport,” said Butch, who will team with Andy Wallace in Dyson Racing’s No. 16 Porsche RS Spyder this weekend in the Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport. “It’s such a throwback to how they used to build the tracks.”

Leitzinger is a two-time overall winner at Mosport in the American Le Mans Series, having won with James Weaver for Dyson Racing in 2004 and 2005 in an AER-powered Lola. He also won IMSA World Sports Car races in 1996 and 1998 and was second in 1997. More ...

08/21/07
nascar
Tryson Wins Crew Chief of the Race  With the extended two day rain delay for the running of the 3M Performance 400 at Michigan International Speedway, crew chiefs were required to wait patiently, recalculating and planning their strategies for the all important 400 mile race.  For the No. 2 MillerLite Dodge crew chief, Pat Tryson, it was more than planning for the possibility of a rain affected shortened race, varying track conditions or a complete 200-lap event.  Tryson needed to plan a race strategy, as well as, a points strategy, as his Penske Racing team sat 12th in the points standings, just inside the cut-off for the chase.  His various strategies paid off, as a call to his driver, Kurt Busch, on lap 177 during the second last caution of the race to stay out and not pit, maintained his leader’s position, keeping Busch up front for the remainder of the race.  For his calculated race strategy and race day calls, Tryson was awarded the WYPALL* Wipers Crew Chief of the Race.
 
Starting from 15th position, Tryson and Busch combined to have their Dodge in the top ten early in the race.  On lap 102, Busch had made his way to the front, earning the valuable five bonus points for leading a lap.  As the race unfolded, it became obvious that Tryson had given Busch a car deemed the one to beat, as no other in the field could catch the Dodge.  As Busch crossed the finish line to take the checkered flag, the team not only finished with the five bonus points for leading a lap, but also five bonus points for leading the most laps in the race.  Tryson’s decision to keep his driver on the track to maintain solid track position, which eventually led to winning the race, solidified their top 12 position in the standings.  More ...
08/21/07
motogp
Stoner domination continues  With conditions less favorable than yesterday very few riders improved their times today, but points leader Casey Stoner did.  Stoner's domination of the Brno weekend continued into Monday and Tuesday, as the championship leader broke the circuit record while testing new Bridgestone race tires today.

Pos  Rider             Bike           Time
 1.  Casey Stoner      Ducati    (B)  1:57.92
 2.  John Hopkins      Suzuki    (B)  1:58.40
 3.  Randy de Puniet   Kawasaki  (B)  1:58.49
 4.  Nicky Hayden      Honda     (M)  1:58.70
 5.  Chris Vermeulen   Suzuki    (B)  1:58.74
 6.  Alex Barros       Ducati    (B)  1:58.84
 7.  Colin Edwards     Yamaha    (M)  1:58.86
 8.  Carlos Checa      Honda     (M)  1:59.13
 9.  Dani Pedrosa      Honda     (M)  1:59.23
10.  Anthony West      Kawasaki  (B)  1:59.28
11.  Valentino Rossi   Yamaha    (M)  1:59.35
12.  Loris Capirossi   Ducati    (B)  1:59.62
13.  Sylvain Guintoli  Yamaha    (D)  2:00.80
14.  Makoto Tamada     Yamaha    (D)  2:01.92

08/21/07
cc
Minardi Team USA has deep roots in Europe  There wasn’t much time to rest for Minardi Team USA and drivers Robert Doornbos and ‘Speedy’ Dan Clarke after the most recent Champ Car World Series race at Road America.  Both traveled to Europe immediately after the race, and are now preparing for Rounds 11 and 12 of the Series, which kick off next weekend at Zolder in Belgium.

Minardi Team USA has deep roots in Europe, including longstanding ties for team owners, Keith Wiggins and Paul Stoddart.  Both spent many years racing there, including in the Benelux markets, while ‘Speedy’ Dan and Robert began their racing careers in Europe.

For Doornbos, who is in the midst of an enthralling, three-way battle for the 2007 title in his rookie Champ Car season, the two Benelux races mark a welcome homecoming.  There’s no doubt his performances this season have elevated him to icon-status with the fervent Dutch racing fans, who are ecstatic that “their man” will once again be competing in Europe. More ...

08/21/07
gp2
Riccardo Risatti to sub for Maldonado  Argentinean WSR driver Riccardo Risatti (pictured right) will be subbing for Pastor Maldonado, who was injured while bike training last week. During this winter Risatti tested for BCN Racing eyeing a possible GP2 debut, eventually deciding to switch to the World Series Renault.
08/21/07
Formula BMW
FBMW Eurocup 2008 teams  Herewith the list of 12 teams selected by BMW Motorsport to take part in next year's FBMW Eurocup (6 - 7 races in F1 package):

ART - DAMS - iSport - Raikkonen/Robertson - Eurointernational - Carlin - Fortec - CRG/CO2 - Kaufmann - Eifelland - Mucke - Holzer
 
Each team is allowed to run 3 cars (maximum of 36 drivers). The races will be in Germany - England - Belgium - Italy - Spain 2x - Hungary. There will be two additional races in both the UK and Germany, most likely as a support race during the WTCC rounds in both countries.

08/21/07
gp2
Henri Karjalainen signed by BCN for Istanbul  Henri Karjalainen will replace the injured Markus Niemela for the BCN team and will be teaming up with Ho Ping Tung in the team owned by Enrique Scalabroni. The Finn is currently laying 2nd in the Asian F.3 Series behind Dillon Battistini, and, after his one-off in GP2, has a concrete chance to replace Niemela in the F.Renault Eurocup with BVM.
08/21/07
nascar
Sponsors fleeing NASCAR  UPDATE Looks like declining TV ratings for two years running is beginning to take its toll on NASCAR given some of the ridiculous asking prices for sponsorship deals we have heard. 

Yet another sponsor is getting out of NASCAR.  Starter, Nike's value brand whose goal was to make its brand synonymous with NASCAR, has decided not to pursue more deals in the sport, and will pull out of NASCAR altogether once their current deals with Joe Gibbs Racing expire, this according to Sports Business Daily.

08/20/07 Joe Gibbs Racing officials announced Monday that Rockwell Automation will not return next year as sponsor of the team’s No. 20 Busch Series team. Rockwell Automation had backed the team since 2003.  A news release did not give a reason for the pullout. The company said it would not return to NASCAR, either.

[Editor's Note: A NASCAR sponsorship is far too expensive.  With all the cars in the field, how much air time, and hence value, does their car get?]

08/21/07
cc
Heylen beating the drum in Belgium  Being in his home country of Belgium has been anything but relaxing for Jan Heylen, as the Conquest Racing driver has spent much of the last two weeks promoting the Champ Car Grand Prix of Belgium to the local media.  Today, Heylen visited with Radio 2 for an in-studio interview, then the fashionable driver joined both RTV and TV Limburg to promote the event. 

“It has been a busy couple of weeks here in Belgium, but I think we are building a good foundation for the race,” said Heylen.  “I’ve seen a lot of excitement for the Zolder event and I’m running well right now, so hopefully I can get a podium finish for my fans.”

Heylen’s commitments also included a visit to the European LeMans race at Spa over the weekend, where he met with media covering the event.  His calendar will continue to be full as his home country’s Champ Car Grand Prix approaches quickly.

08/21/07
f1
Latest F1 news in brief  UPDATE Updates shown in red below.

08/21/07  
  • Piquet Jr wants top team debut
  • Purnell wants to wind up F1 magazine
  • Renault took biggest backwards step in '07
  • Jordan - I don't regret selling team
  • BMW confirm unchanged lineup for 2008
  • Alonso did not snub McLaren vacation - Haug New
  • Rosberg 'not for sale' - Williams New

Piquet Jr wants top team debut
(GMM)  Nelson Piquet Jr has warned formula one's backmarker teams to not bother offering him a debut drive for the 2008 season.

The Brazilian test driver, linked with a possible move to a racing cockpit next year with Renault or Williams, revealed that he is only interested in joining a team that is capable of scoring regular points.

"I want to race for a top team," the 22-year-old told f1today.nl, explaining that he had not worked his entire career to finish last in F1.

"From the outset I want to have the opportunity to collect points.

"Some people think it is important to gain experience with a small team.  I see it differently.

"You only have to look at (Lewis) Hamilton; on his first attempt with McLaren he was right up there."

Piquet finished second to Hamilton in the feeder series GP2 last year, thereafter agreeing to emulate Fernando Alonso and Heikki Kovalainen by sitting out a single season as Renault test driver.

Purnell wants to wind up F1 magazine
(GMM)  An official of motor racing's governing body wants to rid the formula one world of a specialist magazine.

FIA technical consultant Tony Purnell, who formerly ran the now-defunct Jaguar team, has served a petition to wind up the controversial British monthly BusinessF1, which is headed by editor Tom Rubython.

Purnell and Rubython were in court in April where BusinessF1 was ordered to pay $150,000 in libel damages, after an article accused Purnell of bribing journalists.

The winding up petition will be heard in London's Royal Courts of Justice on 5 September. More ...

08/21/07
nascar
Almirola to Make Debut  Aric Almirola will make his debut in the No. 01 U.S. Army Chevrolet in Saturday night’s Nextel Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway. It will be the second career Cup race for the 23-year-old driver and his first with Dale Earnhardt Inc.
 
Almirola joined DEI after a whirlwind week in mid July. In a matter of a few days after leaving Joe Gibbs Racing to sign with Ginn Racing, he found himself headed to DEI when the company merged with Ginn.
 
The Tampa, Fla. native will share the 01 Army ride with veteran Mark Martin in selected races of the current season and also during the 2008 campaign.
 
"In less than a week, I went from Joe Gibbs Racing to Ginn Racing to DEI," said Almirola. "Everything is great and I'm excited to get strapped into the Army Chevy and do battle at Bristol. It's an awesome track and it's important for me to show our soldiers and DEI that I am capable of doing a good job for them." More ...
08/21/07
alms
Behind the scenes with Marino Franchitti  SPEEDtv.com turned Andretti Green's Marino Franchitti loose with a video camera at Mid-Ohio to introduce his Acura race car, his race team, colleagues and family members that joined him when he competed in the Acura Sports Car Challenge last month. The video is available at  http://www.speedtv.com/speedvideo/?bcpid=340473122&bclid=595123378&bctid=1137812487.

Marino was invited by Speed TV's Automotive Editor, Marshall Pruett, to get behind the cameras and become a pit reporter and videographer. Never one to shrink from a challenge Marino readily took up the task.

"It was fun but hard work too," Marino exclaimed after he handed back the camera. "Not being used to carrying a camera I kept leaving it in different places then something cool would happen and I'd miss it. I'd love to do it again and put into practice what I learned this time." More ...

08/21/07
alms
Mosport Race Fest coming Wednesday  If you'll be in the Toronto area Wednesday in advance of the Mosport weekend, make plans to stop by Metro Hall Square for the 2007 Mosport Race Fest. Local hero Ron Fellows and fellow Canadian Tony Burgess will be the featured guests for an afternoon of fun with the American Le Mans Series. Here's the info:

• What: Mosport Race Fest
• When: 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Wednesday, August 22
• Where: Metro Hall Square, 55 John St. in Toronto
Featuring:
• Show cars from Penske Motorsports (Porsche RS Spyder), Lowe's Fernandez Racing (Lola-Acura) and Porsche (911 GT3)
• XBOX Race Simulators (fans and media can race Ron Fellows)
• Corvette Racing-pit stop demonstration with Ron Fellows at 12:15 p.m.
• Ron Fellows and Tony Burgess Autograph session at 12:45 p.m.
08/21/07
nascar
3M Performance 400  UPDATE #2 11:02 AM - Green flag

08/21/07 10:26 AM - After 10 laps of green-caution, the fog has won.  NASCAR has pulled the cars into the pits, and they'll restart the race when the fog burns off.

08/21/07 10:10 AM - The engines are fired, and they're rolling.  The fog is so thick that visibility is a real problem here.
08/21/07
f1
Istanbul Park has all the right ingredients  After a short respite from racing and testing, Formula One enters the final spurt of the season on 26th August in Istanbul. This challenging circuit on the Asian side of the teeming city on the Bosphorus joined the calendar in 2005 and requires the F1 trucks to travel the furthest distance of the season.

Built to the designs of German architect Hermann Tilke, the circuit provides a demanding layout for drivers whilst offering teams the best possible working environment. For the BMW Sauber F1 Team's logistics department the race is equally taxing: of all the circuits to which it dispatches a complete complement of equipment, including trucks and motorhomes, its journey to the Sea of Marmara is, at over 2000 kilometres, easily the furthest. More ...
08/21/07
tv news
cca
Elkhart Lake Champ Car Atlantic race to be televised  The Champ Car Atlantic Championship race run at Road America in Elkhart Lake on August 12, 2007 will be aired on Wednesday, August 22 at 5:00 pm - 5:30 pm ET on ESPN2.
08/21/07
motogp
Rizla extends Suzuki MotoGP deal  Rizla has extended its sponsorship of the Suzuki MotoGP team for a further season.

Rizla began its relationship with Suzuki two years ago and has now agreed a one-year extension to its title sponsorship.

"We have had a good relationship over the past two seasons and Suzuki has benefited from Rizla's strong marketing activity during that time," said Fumihiro Oonish, Suzuki Racing Department Group Leader.

Oonish added that the Rizla 'blue' has become a “unique color” in MotoGP and is instantly recognizable as a part of the Suzuki team.

08/21/07
nascar
Marlin to drive No. 78  Sterling Marlin will drive the #78 Chevy at Bristol, Martinsville, Richmond, Dover and possibly Talladega. Marlin is also negotiating to drive the #78 for half the 2008 season. The team may also talk to Ricky Rudd to drive the other half of the 2008 season. WTVF-TV Nashville
08/21/07
nhra
NHRA will try again today as well  The NHRA's Toyo Tires Nationals in Mohnton, Pa., were halted by rain. That event, the last one before the Mac Tools U.S. Nationals at O'Reilly Raceway Park in Clermont, Ind., will be completed today, weather permitting.  However the forecast is not good in PA today.   NASCAR's Michigan race has also suffered from two days of rain.
08/21/07
f1
Q and A with Williams' Sam Michael  
Q: We're now entering the last third of the season. Has the team met the expectations it set itself at the start of the year?

Sam Michael: We have significantly improved our reliability since last year. We have had just two mechanical DNFs this season, which is in line with the front running teams. However, our target is to have 100% reliability so we will strive to achieve that in 2008.

Performance-wise, we have also improved since last year. Although we want to do better, fifth in the Constructors' is where the car is at the moment. Our target for next year is to improve again as we head back towards the front end. More ...

08/21/07
f1
BMW unveil unchanged driver lineup for '08  The BMW Sauber F1 Team realizes the importance of continuity and will, therefore, be contesting the 2008 FIA Formula One World Championship with German driver Nick Heidfeld (30) and Robert Kubica (22) from Poland.

BMW Motorsport Director Mario Theissen: "Both Nick and Robert have delivered very strong performances in the course of this season. They have played a decisive role in enabling the BMW Sauber F1 Team to firmly establish itself as the third best team in Formula One. Forty two world championship points plus two podium places says everything about Nick's achievements. Thanks to his extensive experience he is making a substantial contribution to the progress of the team. For Robert, 2007 is his first full season in the top echelon of motor sport. In his brief Formula One career so far he has established himself as equal to Nick. He is extremely fast and, for somebody so young, already has a very sound understanding of technical matters. Robert is a rough diamond we want to polish up into a winning driver. With this strong driver team we are in an excellent position."

Nick Heidfeld: "For me it was always clear that I wanted to continue driving for the BMW Sauber F1 Team, and I never doubted that would be the case. It is tremendous being able to help build up a new team and doing my bit for it. When I look at the progress we have made over the last two years, it's an incredible incentive for me. Personally I have high sporting ambitions and I am certain I can achieve them with the BMW Sauber F1 Team."

Robert Kubica: "I have now been in Formula One for just over one year and have gathered a great deal of experience. Even so, I am learning new things every day and making steady progress. We now have to concentrate on achieving our ambitious common goals, and I'm confident that the team will be able to give me all the necessary tools that I need to reward them for their renewed trust."

With regard to signing a test and reserve driver, an announcement will be made at a later stage.

08/20/07
nascar
ESPN2 To Have Live Coverage of NEXTEL Cup Race  The NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series will be in action Tuesday morning and ESPN2 will have live coverage of the rain-delayed event from Michigan International Speedway beginning at 10 a.m. ET.

The 400-mile race was postponed due to inclement weather on its original Sunday date and was rained out again Monday at the 2-mile oval in Brooklyn, Mich.

Dr. Jerry Punch will anchor ESPN2’s NASCAR coverage from Michigan, joined in the booth by 1989 NASCAR Cup champion Rusty Wallace and two-time NASCAR champion crew chief Andy Petree for analysis. Allen Bestwick, Dave Burns, Jamie Little and Mike Massaro will report from the pits.

08/20/07
Miscellaneous
Speeding is serious offense in Kuwait  .

08/20/07
nascar
Minority driver out of money, out of ride  Bill Lester, driver of the No. 15 Craftsman Truck will be stepping out of the truck due to a temporary lack of sponsorship. "We still support Bill (Lester) and his efforts on the track and we are working diligently with him to locate a sponsor so that we can continue through the 2007 season and beyond," team owner Billy Ballew said.
08/20/07
nascar
Atlanta Goodyear testing postponed  The Goodyear Tire Test at Atlanta Motor Speedway On Tuesday, August 21 and Wednesday, August 22 has been postponed due to the postponement of the Nextel Cup Series Event at Michigan International Speedway. New test dates will be announced at a future date. AMS PR
08/20/07
nascar
ATT asks court for clarification  AT&T has asked the U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals to clarify its ruling from last week in overturning an injunction that had allowed the AT&T logos on the No. 31 Richard Childress Racing car.

Part of the Aug. 13 ruling indicates that the entire case should be dismissed, and AT&T is asking for clarification on whether the entire case should be dismissed or whether only the portion of the case that deals with breach of contract be dismissed.

NASCAR and Sprint, which has joined the suit, believe the entire case should be dismissed, and U.S. District Court Judge Marvin Shoob indicated to both parties that if there was no clarification from the appeals court, he would be compelled to dismiss all of the claims, according to court documents filed by AT&T.

"Although the context and posture of this appeal indicate that the Court [of Appeals] could not have intended to require dismissal of the entire case, the Court should grant rehearing on this point to remove any doubt," AT&T's lawyers state in a brief filed Monday. "NASCAR has already taken the position that the Court's opinion sweeps more broadly."

The AT&T logos likely will remain on the No. 31 car driven by Jeff Burton at least until the Court of Appeals rules on the clarification. Scenedaily 

08/20/07
f1
Q and A with Super Aguri's Kevin Lee  
Q: Kevin, as Chief Operations Officer, what are your main responsibilities at Super Aguri F1 team?

Kevin Lee: "My role is predominantly factory based so a major part of my job is to ensure that the factory does everything possible to support the Race Team and give them all the back-up that we can.

"The Super Aguri F1 team is very small by current standards, but we have an excellent group of people here who constantly strive to do the best job possible with the resources that we have.

"Our goal is to make sure that at each and every race we give the race team the ability to race the fastest and most reliable car possible."

Q: The annual mid-season 'testing ban' has just ended, what happens at SAF1 Team during this period?

Lee: "The mid-season break does give the team chance to catch breath, with many members of the traveling race team taking the opportunity to have a holiday.

"But at the same time the staff at the factory in Leafield are still pushing to maximize the performance and reliability of the race car for the last six Grands Prix of the season.

"We are working on the aerodynamics of the car, detailing the set-up for the Italian Grand Prix which is a very high speed and hence low drag circuit, while also looking at performance items for the other remaining races." More ...

08/20/07
nascar
3M Performance 400 postponed again  UPDATE #5 The 3M Performance 400 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway has been postponed until 10 a.m. Tuesday.

All parking lots will open at 6 a.m. and grandstand gates will open at 8 a.m.

Race tickets will be honored on Tuesday. Race fans that attended Sunday or Monday activities should bring back their tickets for re-entry.

A modified traffic plan will be in place for Tuesday’s event. The track asks all local citizens that use U.S. Hwy 12, M-50 or Vicary Road for their morning commute to prepare for an increased amount of traffic, and find alternate routes if possible.

Campers will be allowed to stay in all MIS-owned and operated campgrounds until noon Wednesday. Those campers who wish to leave may do so in accordance with the grounds’ normal exiting pattern.

Fans that are not camping, but wish to stay in the area for the night are welcomed to stay in their parked cars.

NASCAR and MIS officials announced the postponement at 3:50 p.m. Monday.

Stay tuned to MISpeedway.com, WJR 760 AM, SPEED Channel, ESPN, SIRIUS Satellite Radio and MIS’ Hotline at 800-354-1010 for the latest information.

08/20/07 The jet dryers have been running for the past hour, and radar indicates that we've got a window to run the race.  We look for the race to start somewhere after 2:00 pm.

08/20/07 The rain has stopped, and the jet dryers are blowing.  NASCAR is hoping for a 3-4 hour window.  We are assuming that the race will start around 1:45 - 2:00 local time if all goes well.  Tim Wohlford

08/20/07 On SPEED's NASCAR Now, NASCAR's Robin Pemberton says the plan is to try to run today, if not, then try Tuesday, then Wednesday at 10:00am/et.

08/20/07 According to WTVG (Toledo) Meteorologist Kristin Emery, the chances of getting the NASCAR race run today at Michigan aren't very good.  She tells AutoRacing1, "If it's MIS, it must be raining!  (It) Doesn't look good for today... more rain and very iffy for a noon start if at all."  Kristin should know about rain at MIS, as she was at the rain-delayed IRL race two weeks ago at MIS.  Through 3:00 (the deadline to cancel the race if it's still raining) the chance of rain is 50%.
 
Should NASCAR decide to run the race after the season on Thanksgiving weekend, fans should expect a high temperature of forty degrees.  There is a reason why the Lions built Ford Field (and the Pontiac Silverdome before it) with a roof.

08/20/07 The noon start time for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series 3M Performance 400 has been pushed back due to rain.  NASCAR and track officials will meet at 11:30 a.m. and provide another update shortly after that time.

08/20/07
roc
Johnson and Pastrana to represent USA  US motorsport champions Jimmie Johnson and Travis Pastrana have confirmed their participation in this December’s The Race of Champions at Wembley Stadium, UK, which will see the London arena transformed into a tarmac race track.

The event is the only opportunity for the world’s motorsport heroes to race in exactly the same cars on a parallel track, giving thousands of fans the chance to judge who really is the best.

2006 NASCAR Champion Jimmie Johnson is coming back as part of Team USA after missing out on last year’s event at the Stade de France in Paris, France, due to injury. Despite hurting himself only days before the race, the 31-year-old was still there to cheer on team-mate and fellow American Pastrana.

“When I got the invite to race again I jumped at the opportunity,” said Johnson who drives for NASCAR team Hendrick Motorsports. “I love competition, especially against the best. The Race of Champions event is so unique and gives me the chance to compete against the best drivers in the world from all forms of racing and in vehicles I normally don't get a chance to drive.

“I want to push myself and see where I stack up against everyone else and this is a perfect opportunity to do it. I also like the aspect of representing both NASCAR and the USA, which is very important to me.” More ...

08/20/07
f1
Turkish GP is a logistical challenge  Straddling the two continents of Europe and Asia, the Turkish GP presents an interesting logistical challenge, in that like all European races, the paddock in Istanbul hosts the team trucks and motorhomes. However, the distance from most teams' homes means that the best transport solution is the old-fashioned one of going by sea, with all the race cars, support vehicles and equipment being shipped to and from the Turkish capital from Trieste, on Italy's Adriatic coast.

In fact, sea freight might be old fashioned but it is actually used extensively by the majority of teams for all races outside Europe. While slower than sending equipment by air, it is significantly cheaper. "Sending equipment by ship is much much cheaper than using the FOM air charter," confirms Miodrag Kotur, Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro's head of logistics. "To give you an idea of the saving, it is still cheaper, even though it involves having three sets of everything that we sea freight, totaling around 15,000 kilos." The reason for having three sets is that this means each one can be shuttled around the globe to cover all the non-European events. "The equipment we sent to Australia for the first race of the season came back to Italy for re-stocking before being sent off to China," says Kotur. "The package that went to Malaysia will next be seen in Japan, while the freight first used in Bahrain then went on to Canada, USA and Brazil. Each package contains exactly the same equipment. Included in the list of equipment is stuff that in the past we would have hired on-site at the circuits, such as tables and chairs and kitchen equipment. Hire costs are so high that it is more economical to buy these things at home, as well as items such as generators, cables, connections and so forth and then send them by sea. A single chair can be ridiculously expensive to hire - this is Formula 1 after all! We can buy equipment and use it over several years so it is a good way of further amortizing the costs." This sea freight never includes car components as they change too quickly, because technical developments are ongoing throughout the season. But pit and garage equipment, including some of the dividing partitions that go to make up the garage structure that are bulky and heavy are ideally suited to sea travel. More ...

08/20/07
irl
Prendeville tests RLR IndyCar  Andrew Prendeville of Morristown, N.J. achieved a personal goal Thursday at Infineon Raceway here when the RLR/Andersen Racing Indy Pro Series driver participated in his first IndyCar test session, running laps in the Rahal Letterman Racing No. 8 Patron Dallara/Honda/Firestone Indy Car of Scott Sharp.

"I didn't run many laps, but it was more than I had ever done before!" said Prendeville. "I've been working toward today for the last 21 years and it was great to get in the Rahal Letterman Indy Car and turn some laps."

Prendeville also tested his Best Friends Animal Society No. 5 Indy Pro Series car that he'll drive in two races at Infineon this Saturday and Sunday prior to Sunday's Motorola Indy 300 IndyCar race.

"It was weird to be jumping between cars, but I had a lot of fun," Prendeville said. "I look forward to getting another shot in an Indy Car in the future."

Andersen Racing, based in Fairfield, N.J., is the official Indy Pro Series development team of Rahal Letterman Racing, Hilliard, Ohio.

08/20/07
f1
Latest F1 news in brief  UPDATE Update shown in red below.

08/20/07
  • Bernie issues India GP deadline
  • Coulthard - I had eating disorder
  • 'Shut up' - Piquet tells McLaren pair
  • McLaren unaffected by scandals - Whitmarsh
  • Alonso wants to stay at McLaren - Haug
  • Kubica laments traction control ban
  • Don't lose cool, Schu manager tells Alonso
  • Renault switch focus to 2008 season New
  • No early debut for Bourdais - Berger New
  • Ralf had Toro Rosso talks - Berger New

Bernie issues India GP deadline
(GMM) India has been given just 40 days to put a detailed plan in motion for its inaugural grand prix in Delhi.

F1's chief executive Bernie Ecclestone recently inked a 2009 race deal with the Indian Olympic Association (IOA), but he has now written to the potential promoter with a September 30 deadline, according to India's Economic Times.

By the end of the deadline, the IOA must have submitted to Ecclestone a detailed business plan and feasibility study, following speculation that funding or even land for a purpose-built circuit has not yet been organized.

"We are working on the project and will come out with a complete detailed plan in a couple of weeks," said IOA chief Suresh Kalmadi.

"The letter given (to us) by Mr. Ecclestone is extendible beyond the deadline."

Trouble could also be brewing on the financial front. Businessman Vijay Mallya, already a sponsor of the Toyota team through Kingfisher Airlines, had been touted as a key backer of the Indian GP project.

But he now says: "If IOA is doing it, let them; why should I invest?"

Coulthard - I had eating disorder
(GMM) David Coulthard has admitted for the first time that he once struggled with an eating disorder.

The Red Bull driver, who at 36 is the oldest current racer in formula one, wrote in a new autobiography that he used to make himself vomit despite weighing under 60kg in his teens.

Scot Coulthard, who is 6 foot tall, said he developed bulimia to try to negate the disadvantage of weighing more than his racing competitors.

"In my mind, the only way I could keep my weight down was by making myself vomit," he said. More ...

08/20/07
f1
Video: Aerodynamics Play Crucial Role in Formula 1 Races  In Formula 1 races, aerodynamics are one of the most important elements to achieving great speeds. Formula 1 vehicles have smaller frontal areas to maximize the amount of power used to propel it, and decrease the amount of wind resistance encountered. The Panasonic Toyota Racing Team spends an estimated 8,000-9,000 hours a year developing the vehicle in specially-designed wind tunnels, as well as working on CFD, computational fluid dynamics – a computer program used to unearth air flow patterns over the car.  See Video on our Home Page.
08/20/07
cc
Champ Car European Cup announced  Team consistency will again be rewarded when the Champ Car World Series begins its 2007 European two-event swing this week with the championship's race teams doing battle for the inaugural Phanos Resorts Champ Car European Cup.

Champ Car returns to Europe for the first time since 2003 and will race in Belgium and The Netherlands on consecutive weekends – competing at Zolder, the former home of the Belgian Formula 1 Grand Prix, on August 26 and the famous Assen TT circuit on September 2, renowned as the historic venue for the Dutch round of the MotoGP World Championship.

The Phanos Resorts Champ Car European Cup follows a similar format to the recent Champ Car Canadian Triple Crown – the results of a team’s two drivers combine to provide an average finishing position. More ...

08/20/07
nascar
Earnhardt to start last  Dale Earnhardt Jr. will drop to the rear of the field for the start of Monday's rescheduled Nextel Cup race at MIS, the result of a transmission change between Saturday's first and second practice sessions.  Earnhardt, who qualified way back in 39th anyway, was fifth fastest in morning practice before the transmission problem surfaced.
08/20/07
nascar
Rudd to retire at end of 2007 season  UPDATE JJ Yeley was recently released from the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Chevy to make room for Kyle Busch in 2008. A team source at the newly formed Yates/Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing confirms that ‘all signs point’ to Yeley as their choice to take over the No. 88 Ford.

08/19/07 Ricky Rudd says he’ll leave NASCAR Nextel Cup racing after this, his 28th full-time season. The 50-year-old Chesapeake native said Saturday that he’s told car owner Robert Yates he won’t be back and that he has no plans to race full time again. “It’s time. It’s time,’’ Rudd said at Michigan International Speedway. “It’s time for me to step back from the active schedule.’’ At the end of the 2005 season, Rudd said he’d take a break from racing but refused to call it a retirement. Other than filling in for Tony Stewart in one race, Rudd skipped all of last season before returning this year. While Rudd says he’d consider a part-time ride with a strong team, he’s not pursuing such an opportunity. He’s at peace with leaving the series. “As you grow older, your interests change,’’ Rudd said. “I’m not going about it saying I’m scared to death of it. To me, it’s exciting.’’ This has been a tough season for Rudd. He started alongside teammate David Gilliland on the front row for the Daytona 500 but finished 26th. His best finish this season is seventh in the Coca-Cola 600. Rudd enters today’s race 29th in the points. Rudd said he’s not sure what he’ll do. A television career could be a possibility. Rudd said ESPN offered him a job last year, but he declined it because of the travel schedule. If nothing else, he’ll have plenty of time to spend with his wife, Linda, and son, Landon, who turns 13 this month. “It’s not like, 'Oh, man, what am I going to do with my life?’’’ Rudd said. “I’m kind of looking forward to the next chapter. I just don’t know what it is yet.” Virginian Pilot
08/20/07
racing news
Quotes of the week  
DALE EARNHARDT, Jr., NASCAR driver, Dale Earnhardt Incorporated
"I'm not going to sit here and get personal about this. The personal stuff is way far away from the racetrack. It's upsetting as hell, and unfortunate. But you know, that's just what happens sometimes. Like I say, I kind of had an idea that we were going to come down this road and have to take another turn. I knew this was the way it was going to happen. I'm not really all that surprised," he said. "I knew I wasn't going to get the number a long time ago, but you wait and wait and wait. Kelley is working, trying to talk to Max, and Max is trying to help. Max tried his butt off to try and make it work, to talk some sense into [Teresa]. But she either feels too personal about the number, or the rift between me and her is too personal. I'm definitely going to look at some 80s and things like that. That's just common sense," he said. "I want a number that I'm going to like, and it's going to be a number I like and one I design. I'll design the shape and the look. It will be mine, and we'll build a new identity with that. Starting with such a clean page next year anyway, maybe it's for the best, sort of a lesson in disguise to make that clean break. Because when I walk away from DEI, I wanted no ties whatsoever. If I was to get the 8, and allow Teresa to have limited control of it, I'd still have to deal with her, and that wasn't what I wanted. We have to let the 8 go, and we have to get something new."

TONY STEWART, NASCAR driver, Joe Gibbs Racing
“Did I say thanks lately? He’s a father now and he understands. He’s really giving now and everything. He’s a kinder even gentler Jeff Gordon than before. I mean, he’s a great guy.” Jeff Gordon responded by saying that Stewart could repay him later. Tony said, "I'll bake you a cake or cookies or something.” (Stewart was commenting on Gordon "giving" him the extra 10 points for wins in the Chase for the Nextel Cup Championship last weekend at Watkins Glen) More ...

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