Video: Q&A with Chase Elliott at Darlington Chase Elliott (met with members of the media at Darlington Raceway and discussed his position in the Chase standings, what it would mean to get his first Cup Series win at Darlington, his thoughts on Dale Earnhardt, Jr. being sidelined for the remainder of the season and many other topics. Comment
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – The battle to win a Mazda Scholarship valued at $1M to assist the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires champion in graduating to the Verizon IndyCar Series in 2017 intensified this afternoon during a dramatic Mazda Indy Lights Grand Prix of Watkins Glen Presented by Cooper Tires. Zach Veach, from Stockdale, Ohio, started fifth at the scenic and challenging 3.37-mile Watkins Glen International road course but quickly moved into the lead before romping to his second win of the season and the fifth for Belardi Auto Racing.
Jimmie Johnson leads opening Sprint Cup practice at Darlington
Three-time Darlington winner Jimmie Johnson paced Saturday's opening Sprint Cup practice session for Sunday's Bojangles Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway.
With torrential rain from Tropical Storm Hermine washing out all of Friday's on-track activities, Saturday's opening session was the first opportunity for drivers to take to the track.
Driving a special Dale Earnhardt and David Pearson throwback paint scheme on his No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet, Johnson clocked in with a lap of 27.937 seconds (176.025 mph) during the late morning session, followed by Denny Hamlin (175.060 mph), Ryan Blaney (174.711 mph), Kyle Larson (174.544) and Ryan Newman (174.519).
Antonio Giovinazzi delighted his home fans after passing countryman Raffaele Marciello on the final lap to win this afternoon's Feature Race at Monza, taking the top spot from the back of the grid by making the right tire call and gaining an advantage from a safety car mishap to lead home an Italian 1-2 ahead of Gustav Malja.
When the lights went out all eyes were on poleman Pierre Gasly, who eased away from the fight for P2 between Artem Markelov and Arthur Pic, which saw the Frenchman come off worse and cut the first chicane before returning ahead of the Russian, his countryman Sergey Sirotkin, teammates Jordan King and Norman Nato and local hero Luca Ghiotto, while behind them Giovinazzi only just avoided the stalled car of Sean Gelael before heading on his way once again.
Ganassi Chevy driver Scott Dixon remained the fastest driver at Watkins Glen by leading the final practice ahead of IndyCar qualifying this afternoon.
Dixon's lap of 146.520mph was just 0.05 sec faster than Will Power's Chevy and Sebastien Bourdais' Chevy in a session that saw the top-17 drivers covered by 1-second on the super smooth, super fast 3.37-mile historic upstate NY track.
Urrutia wins Lights pole With a lap time of 1:32.2997s, Santiago Urrutia won pole position for today's Mazda Indy Lights Grand Prix of Watkins Glen Presented by Cooper Tires. The driver of the No. 55 Mazda/SPM with Curb-Agajanian entry was 0.181s quicker than teammate Andre Negrao. Carlin's Ed Jones was third.
The green flag for today's race is scheduled for 1:35 p.m. local time.
Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) topped his first session of the weekend at Silverstone Circuit at the British GP, as the points leader and 2-time MotoGP world champion took the top spot in Saturday morning's FP3. With grey skies interrupted by flashes of blue, the weather was cool but dry and the final few minutes of the session provided a fantastic shootout as the grid fought for direct graduation to the Q2 session. Maverick Vinales (Team Suzuki Ecstar) was just unable to pip Marquez to the post on his final lap and ended the session in P2, with Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team) completing the top 3 who move into Q2. Iannone suffered a lowside at Farm Curve but was uninjured and quickly got back out on the second bike.
Friday Action - Final turn leading onto pit straight
It's a cool, foggy morning here in the Finger Lakes region of New York. Temperatures dipped into the 50s, and as I write here at 8 a.m. local time it is 54 degrees. The sun however is peeking out and the fog beginning to burn off. We expect temperatures to climb to the mid 70s midday. And while tropical storm Hermine is moving up the east coast towards New York, Watkins Glen is far inland, and should be unaffected by they storm.
Driving around the track yesterday proved that the decision to return to the Glen this weekend was a good one. The campsites are all sold out for the weekend. There are a few grandstands around the track, but there are smaller then at most tracks. The fans we spoke with who have attended multiple races here say they often move around the circuit to take in the different corners. We decided to do this for ourselves yesterday.
Head injuries are something not to be trifled with, the long-term ramifications simply too severe to ignore. Dale Earnhardt Jr. understands these risks all too well, as NASCAR’s most popular driver is continuing to recover from his third concussion in four years and fourth since 2002.
On Friday, Earnhardt announced he will miss the remainder of the current season, which if you take into account the six races he’s already missed, means he will have been sidelined a total of 18 races since last competing July 9 at Kentucky Speedway. His goal, he said in a statement, is to get completely healthy by the start of the 2017 season in February.
Scuderia Ferrari Team Development driver Charles Leclerc claimed his third pole of the GP3 season at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza this morning: the Monegasque’s best laptime of 1:38.546 was one tenth quicker than Arden International’s Jake Dennis. Renault Academy’s Jack Aitken made it two Arden drivers in the top three after an eventful qualifying session in Italy.
Video: Porsche Friday report from Mexico City From the AR1.com Youtube page, a video from qualifying for round 5 of the FIA World Endurance Championship WEC: The two Porsche 919 Hybrids will start from first and second row to the fifth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) in Mexico City. The current championship leaders, Romain Dumas (FR), Neel Jani (CH) and Marc Lieb (DE), will take on the six-hour race from second place on the grid. The reigning world champions, Timo Bernhard (DE), Brendon Hartley (NZ) and Mark Webber (AU), are qualified for fourth position. Richard Lietz (AT) and Michael Christensen (DK) set fourth fastest time in their LMGTE category with the Porsche 911 RSR.
Kaiser sets pace in Indy Lights practice Kyle Kaiser of Juncos Racing was fastest in two Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires practice sessions with a lap of 1:33.4343 (129.845 mph), a day ahead of the only race this weekend for the top tier of the Mazda Road to Indy development stepladder.
Championship leader Santiago Urrutia of Schmidt Peterson Motorsports with Curb-Agajanian was second at 1:33.4911 (129.766 mph). Ed Jones (Carlin), who trails Urrutia by 16 points with three races remaining, was fourth fastest on the day. Indy Lights qualifying and the race both take place Saturday.
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