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DATE News (chronologically)
09/29/10
f1

Hamilton has no one to blame but himself
Lewis Hamilton, having reviewed his coming together with Mark Webber in Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix, remains adamant that the collision was not his fault, with FIA race stewards having deemed the moment a racing incident.

At the Lap 36 restart following retirements for Kamui Kobayashi and Bruno Senna, the then two leaders of the Drivers’ Championship came to blows at Turn 7, with Red Bull pilot Webber’s right-front wheel coming into contact with the left-rear quarter of Hamilton’s McLaren.

“I've seen the replay and I was half a car length ahead of Mark and on the racing line,” Hamilton said on his website.

“It's just very frustrating that in Italy I tapped the car in front and it broke my front suspension and in Singapore the car behind tapped me and punctured my tire. I've been unlucky both times."  No, it was not a case of being lucky, it's a case of Hamilton bullying his way past other cars by bumping and banging his way past.  That was his style when he won the title, but now the cars are more fragile and his aggressive style has bitten him in the posterior this year.

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09/29/10
f1

Q&A with Jenson Button
Jenson Button reflects on his weekend in Singapore and looks ahead to the final four races of the season.

Q: Fourth position gives you more useful points in the hunt for the world title. Was the Singapore Grand Prix a good experience for you?
JB: "It was an extremely long and tough race, but I was pleased with my overall performance. I think I got the maximum from the car, and while it would have been nicer to have finished ahead of Mark, Sunday's points still definitely keep me in touch.

It was a little disappointing to see that we probably didn't have enough pace to take the fight to the Ferraris and the Red Bulls, but that was to be expected, really. Singapore is one of the highest downforce tracks on the calendar, so it's not a place where our car would really excel.

I think the next four races will be very interesting, they'll certainly play more to our strengths. And, as we've seen, this championship is going to go all the way, and it's still very hard to predict who'll come out on top - so it's very exciting." 

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09/29/10
tv news

Upcoming on Speed TV
NASCAR RACE HUB: The Hub (7 p.m. ET Monday-Thursday) brings viewers up-to-date on the latest in today’s No. 33 Richard Childress Racing appeals hearing with a report from Danielle Trotta on Wednesday’s show. Wednesday’s edition also features Jimmie Johnson in a two-segment, sit-down interview with host Steve Byrnes.  Also appearing on the Hub Wednesday will be Greg Biffle, as well as an in-studio visit with Charlotte Motor Speedway president Marcus Smith.  Jeff Hammond also stops by to preview this weekend’s Kansas race.

On Thursday, Wendy Venturini talks to Denny Hamlin. 

On his first years in the Cup Series:
“I never can remember having a good time,” Hamlin said.  I had just accomplished something that I’d always wanted to…and then I wasn’t having any fun, because each and every week that I wasn’t winning I was constantly frustrated.  Mike [Ford] had a talk with me and said, ‘If you only find happiness in winning, you’re going to be very disappointed in this sport.’

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09/29/10
ta

Ave Leads Trans-Am Practice Day at Road Atlanta
Points leader Tony Ave, of Maiden, N.C., found a bit more speed in the second of today’s two practice sessions and remained atop the time charts at the end of practice for Friday’s SCCA Pro Racing Trans-Am Series 2010 season finale at Road Atlanta.

Driving the No. 4 Boden Masonry/Lamers Racing/McMahon Group/Optech/PME Chevrolet Corvette, Ave posted a best lap at 1:20.083 (114.181 mph). Ave’s time, which came under cool and overcast conditions with a threat of rain, was nearly a tenth of a second quicker than his session-leading time from the first practice session held this morning.

“It went real good,” said Ave of his efforts in Practice 2. “We had a little ignition problem yesterday, but we sorted that out, fortunately. The car is really good. That was with a fair amount of fuel in it and the tires are good tires, but they’ve got some heat cycles on them, so I’m optimistic for tomorrow. The track was really fast here. I just went out to do one really hard lap and then I saw some rain coming and stuff and there was no reason to keep going. I think we’ll be pretty good for tomorrow and we’ll see what happens on Friday.”

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09/29/10
irl

Zucker pipe dreaming in Fontana
There have been reports that the IndyCar Series and International Speedway Corp., the track owner, were not exactly on the same business page and that the sanctioning body didn't want to race twice in Southern California. The IndyCar Series has been the main draw at the Long Beach Grand Prix since 2008.

However, Zucker is pressing the IndyCar Series for a date, possibly as early as 2011. Now that ACS has just one NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in March, there's plenty of open dates at Fontana.

Auto Club Speedway president Gillian Zucker reportedly made a presentation to IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard over the weekend in Sonoma, although the various parties are not confirming the meeting. Zucker didn't venture alone, but with the support of both ISC and Auto Club.

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09/29/10
irl

Two big drives in one day
LPGA Tour rookie Beatriz Recari will offer swing tips to Newman/Haas Racing driver Graham Rahal early in the afternoon Oct. 2 and then get a ride in the Indy Racing Experience two-seater with Mario Andretti at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Comment
09/29/10
fil

IZOD, Cunningham back with SSM for finale
Sam Schmidt Motorsports announced Sept. 28 that Wade Cunningham will return to the cockpit of the #77 IZOD/Sam Schmidt Motorsports entry for the Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka 100, the season finale of the 2010 Firestone Indy Lights season at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

The trio of IZOD, Cunningham, and Sam Schmidt Motorsports had a successful debut in May where the New Zealander scored his third Firestone Freedom 100 win at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"We're excited to have IZOD on board with us for the season finale, and I have to thank them for affording us the opportunity to put Wade in the car," team owner, Sam Schmidt, said. "This was a strong combination of sponsor and driver in May, and we're confident that we can produce a similar performance this weekend in Miami."

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09/29/10
irl

IZOD IndyCar Series Q & A - Championship Contenders
IZOD IndyCar Series championship contenders Will Power and Dario Franchitti and the two men who lead their championship winning teams Tim Cindric, president of Penske Racing, and Mike Hull, managing director of Target Chip Ganassi Racing participated in a IZOD IndyCar Series teleconference earlier today

Power, who came back from a serious back injury in 2009 to be one of dominant drivers in the series in 2010, leads Franchitti, a two-time series champion who seeks his second consecutive IZOD IndyCar Series title, by 12 points entering the season-ending Cafes do Brasil Indy 300 on Oct. 2 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

It is the fifth-straight season that the IZOD IndyCar Series title will be decided in the final race.

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09/29/10
motogp

MotoGP Riders Visit Honda HQ in Tokyo
Honda’s six riders in the MotoGP World Championship today visited the headquarters of Honda Motor Company in Tokyo and also dropped in on the main offices of Honda Racing Corporation (HRC) in advance this weekend’s Grand Prix of Japan. Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso were joined by Marco Melandri and Marco Simoncelli from the San Carlo Honda Gresini team, LCR Honda’s Randy de Puniet, and 250cc World Champion Hiro Aoyama, who graduated to MotoGP with the Interwetten Honda team this season.

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09/29/10
ga

Gidley Signs With Team Sahlen For full 2011 Rolex GT Season
Memo Gidley will be the lead driver for Team Sahlen’s 2011 Campaign in the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series presented by Crown Royal Cask No. 16.  Memo will be paired with long term Team Sahlen driver Wayne Nonnamaker in the #43 Team Sahlen Mazda RX-8.

At the conclusion of the 2010 Season, Memo co-drove with Wayne in the Watkins Glen II and season finale at Miller Motorsports Park events.  In those events, Memo was able to mix it up in the Top 5 with the best in the GT class.  Plus at the finale, Gidley was able to lead several of the closing laps of the race.

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09/29/10
irl

Hunter-Reay to make 100th IndyCar start
An IndyCar factoid for Wednesday - Ryan Hunter-Reay's 100th IndyCar Race will be at Homestead this weekend:

2003: 18 Champ Car
2004: 14 Champ Car
2005: 11 Champ Car
2006:  0
2007:  6 IndyCar
2008: 17 IndyCar
2009: 17 IndyCar
2010: 17 IndyCar
Total: 100

Comment
09/29/10
f1

Singapore team orders discussion postponed until Korea
(GMM)  A meeting to discuss the future of team orders in formula one has been postponed.

When the World Motor Sport Council recently met to consider Ferrari's Hockenheim breach, the matter was instead referred to a committee to reconsider the controversial ban.

Leading FIA official Charlie Whiting had scheduled a meeting with team bosses about the matter in Singapore, but Germany's Auto Motor und Sport reports that it was delayed.

"We have postponed until Korea," Whiting confirmed.  It is, of course, not entirely clear that the inaugural Yeongam event will go ahead late next month.

"The idea," FIA president Jean Todt said a week ago when asked about the new team orders debate, "is to find out what is most healthy and transparent."

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09/29/10
automotive

GM Invests $23.5 Million for Electric Components in Baltimore
General Motors said Wednesday it will invest $23.5 million for additional production of vehicle electrification components on the site of the Baltimore Transmission Plant, where the first electric motor manufacturing facility in the U.S. will be operated by a major automaker.

The new investment will create 11 job openings to be filled in accordance with the UAW-GM National Agreement.

“This will allow us to strengthen our core electrification components expertise,” said GM Manufacturing Manager Arvin Jones. “We’ll have more to say about specific products later.” 

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09/29/10
f1

Schumacher not sacked 'because we know him' - Brawn
(GMM)  If another driver had lurked beneath Michael Schumacher's red helmet in 2010, boss Ross Brawn has admitted Mercedes GP might have ousted him.

British television pundit Eddie Jordan, Schumacher's first ever F1 boss, said in Singapore after the German's incident strewn run to 13th place that he "would sack him".

"He's clearly not good enough on this performance we've seen," the Irishman charged.

Asked a similar question by F1's official website, Mercedes GP chief Brawn admitted on Wednesday that – if Schumacher was not the famous seven time world champion and record-setting legend - the struggling occupant of this year's car number 3 might have been shown the door.

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09/29/10
nascar

Filthy rich Brian France not making divorce payments to ex-wife
The fallout from the messy divorce of NASCAR chairman Brian France and his ex-wife continued in state appeals court Tuesday, with lawyers for Brian France arguing that the proceedings should largely be closed to the public and the couple’s divorce agreement kept sealed.

But court documents filed before the hearing already give some information about the divorce agreement, details of which are sealed in Mecklenburg courts. According to documents filed by Megan France, the agreement gives her at least $40,000 a month in child care and alimony, as well as a $9 million “distributive award.” According to those documents, Brian France has refused to make at least some of the payments, “despite a clear ability to do so.”

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09/29/10
nascar

Quote of the Week
Brian France, accused of trying to manipulate court system like he manipulates NASCAR
“Mr. Brian France apparently believes that he may engage the courts of this state in the same way he runs NASCAR. That is, he can make the rules, interpret them, and when he disagrees with them, change or ignore them.” From a divorce court filing by Brian France's ex-wife in protest of France trying to manipulate the court system like he manipulates NASCAR. 

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09/29/10
irl

11 drivers test ahead of IndyCar finale
Battling the stiff breeze off Turn 3 and some understeer, Sebastian Saavedra was seeking to quickly get up to speed for the Cafes do Brasil Indy 300 this weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway and lay a foundation for the 2011 IZOD IndyCar Series season.

The young Colombian, who started in his first Indianapolis 500 in May, was among 11 drivers testing Sept. 27 on the 1.5-mile oval.

The sanctioning Indy Racing League waived its rule of not testing within seven days of a race to compensate teams for a lost testing day Sept. 4, when a section of safety fencing on the backstretch wasn’t completely installed.

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09/29/10
irl

Power prepares for intense IndyCar finale
Will Power
Will Power is on the verge of winning an IndyCar Series title for Team Penske. If he can do it at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida on Saturday evening, the laid-back driver from the Australian garden city of Toowoomba in Queensland won't celebrate with French champagne.

"I'm not much of a drinker these days -- I can't stand the morning after," Power said. "But I'll have a beer, for sure. Really, I never plan anything around winning. You just have to go out there and get it done. You'll have time later to party."

Power, 29, doesn't climb fences like Penske teammate Helio Castroneves after a victory. He isn't much of a dancer, either. But he's a special driver, who has been nothing short of spectacular in his first full season for Roger Penske.

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09/29/10
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Wednesday
  • Lotus withdrew F1 naming license over t-shirt dispute
  • Glock admits beating Lotus to tenth not likely
  • Gascoyne signs new 5-year Lotus deal
  • Alguersuari says Alonso 'very cold'
  • Jordan says he would 'sack' 2010-spec Schumacher
  • 2010 finale to show which Red Bull driver 'better' - Vettel

    Read more & Comment...
09/29/10
f1

Lotus Team signs Gascoyne for 5 years
In a strong statement of intent about the aspirations of Lotus Racing, soon to become Team Lotus, an announcement has been made today that Chief Technical Officer Mike Gascoyne has signed a five year deal, tying him to the Anglo / Malaysian squad until at least 2015.

Under Mike’s technical direction, Lotus Racing has gone from confirmation of its entry to the 2010 FIA Formula One™ World Championship in September 2009 to its current position of tenth, and is now forging ahead with its 2011 car which will be raced under the Team Lotus name.

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09/29/10
irl

Imbalance in IndyCar should worry bosses
Chip Ganassi has had a dream season as a team owner
Roger Penske
In just four days either Will Power or Dario Franchitti will hoist the IZOD IndyCar Series trophy given to the winner of the 2010 season championship.

Not even the dancing devil himself, Helio Castroneves, can catch them. His 501 points are 86 behind Power and 74 behind Franchitti.

It is as it should be as both Power — who has whipped the field at most of IndyCar’s road and street courses — and Franchitti — who has the most balanced points totals between going right and left and strictly left this season — have been the class of the grid all season long.

What should be worrisome for IndyCar boss Randy Bernard, however, is the imbalance at the team level — between Penske Racing, Ganassi Racing and the rest of the field — that was evident in the very first round of racing back in Sao Paulo, Brazil in March.

And what has become even more evident — indeed downright scary — as the season wore on is that Penske and Ganassi look like they will continue their dominant ways for seasons to come.

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09/28/10
nassprint

NASCAR Dover TV Ratings plummet
ESPN's live telecast of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Dover International Speedway on Sunday earned a final national household coverage rating of 2.8 (2.4 U.S. rating), averaging 3,965,722 viewers, 23% lower than a year ago and continues NASCAR's 3-year slide. Last year's race aired on ABC and earned a 3.1 U.S. rating [with 5.08 million viewers].

ESPN2's live telecast of Saturday's NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Dover earned a final national household coverage rating of 1.2, the same rating earned for last year's race that also aired on ESPN2. The telecast averaged 1,624,214 viewers, an 11 percent increase from last year. ESPN2's NASCAR Nationwide Series ratings have remained consistent all season and are slightly up from ratings at this point last year. ESPN PR

The Camping World Truck Series race from Las Vegas on Speed earned a 0.54, up 17 percent from a 0.46 last year.

Comment
09/28/10
alms

GT drivers talk about Petit LeMans
If the 13th Petit Le Mans powered by MAZDA 2 isn’t the most important race in the history of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n, it certainly ranks on the podium. Championships in all four classes are up for grabs – a first in the Series – and none is as hotly contested as GT. Some of the key players in the class spoke about what’s at stake – race victory, class championship, invitation to the Le Mans 24 Hours next year, among others – in the annual 1,000-mile/10-hour classic at Road Atlanta.

Tommy Milner, BMW Rahal Letterman Racing Team
BMW M3 GT

“With one race to go, we’re only one point out of the manufacturer’s championship, and Petit Le Mans is where it will all be decided. Anything can happen in an endurance race but with our combination of cars, team, drivers, and tires we have to be one of the favorites. It’s going to be at least nine hours of flat-out racing and the ones who make the least mistakes will be out front. I’m up for the challenge as I’m sure the rest of the BMW Rahal Letterman Racing Team is. Road Atlanta is one of those tracks where every lap is exciting whether you are by yourself or racing on the last lap and I hope to see the No. 92 M3 GT out front at the checkers.”

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09/28/10
automotive

Chevrolet Starts Market Launch of Volt
Chevrolet has hand-picked 15 advanced technology enthusiasts and electric vehicle advocates to be the first consumers to experience the Volt every day under real-world conditions during a three-month vehicle and charging evaluation program starting in late October. This exclusive group of expert consumers – referred to as the Chevrolet Volt Customer Advisory Board – is one of the final steps Chevrolet is taking to validate the vehicle, charging and overall customer experience in preparation for the retail launch late this year. 

“We are eager to learn as much as we can from potential customers about their experience with the Volt,” said Tony DiSalle, Chevrolet Volt marketing director. “We want to know their thoughts, impressions, and perceptions. This special group of electric vehicle experts gives us the opportunity to learn even more as we near market launch.”

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09/28/10
fil

Clarke to debut at HMS
Up-and-coming USAC driver Henry Clarke will join Davey Hamilton Racing for the Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka 100 at Homestead-Miami Speedway after successfully completing Firestone Indy Lights rookie testing at Kentucky Speedway on Sept. 22-23.

"He did a really good job," said Kevin Blanch, IZOD IndyCar Series technical director, who oversaw Clarke's rookie test. "He's an Impressive young driver and doing the right thing trying to get race experience before trying to race in Firestone Indy Lights full-time. I think he'll be an asset to the series when he gets there."

Clarke, the 2009 USAC National Sprint Car Rookie of The Year, claimed his first USAC national sprint car victory at Toledo in July. He currently ranks in the top 10 in both USAC National Sprint Car and National Midget points. The 21-year-old native of Villa Park, Calif., relocated to Indiana in May to race for Keith Kunz Motorsports in the USAC series.

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09/28/10
fil

Herrington joins O2 Racing Technology
O2 Racing Technology announced Sept. 27 that Daniel Herrington will pilot the #36 Quamtel/DataJack entry in the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

"I've known Daniel for several years now, and it's always been a pleasure working with him," Olson said. "We've got a lot of laps at Homestead, and with Daniel driving and Dave McMillan engineering, our expectations are high for a great result heading into the off-season. Daniel's smart, mature, and talented, and we're super-excited about the opportunity to work together as we both begin working on our 2011 programs."

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09/28/10
irl

Championship contenders unveil new IZOD IndyCar Series Trophy
Either Dario Franchitti or Will Power will receive the inaugural IZOD IndyCar Series Championship Trophy following the Cafes do Brasil Indy 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Oct. 2.

Both title contenders were part of the unveiling of the 3-foot-tall, 45-pound trophy during a media event Sept. 28 at the W Hotel on South Beach in Miami.

IZOD collaborated with and commissioned acclaimed sculptor Ted Gall to design and create the award, which conveys the intertwined nature of man and machine in the 21st century. The stainless steel sculpture of man with outstretched arms balanced on a single wheel rests atop an African Pedauk hardwood base.

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09/28/10
irl

Homestead-Miami Speedway to Salute Castroneves, Kanaan in "Grand" Style
Helio Castroneves and Tony Kanaan will put a twist on the traditional Grand Marshal command  prior to the 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

"Drivers, start our engines!" will be the Miami spin on the most famous words in racing for the Oct. 2 Cafes do Brasil Indy 300, which will determine the IZOD IndyCar Series championship. The South Florida's IndyCar Series stars will serve as co-Grand Marshals and deliver the command to start engines from inside their race cars to kick off Saturday's race.

"There isn't a better fit for the Cafes do Brasil Indy 300 Grand Marshal role than a tag-team of Helio and Tony - IndyCar stars who represent South Florida with class, integrity and certainly success on the track.," said Matt Becherer, president of Homestead-Miami Speedway. "We're honored they have accepted our invitation for Saturday's IndyCar Championship, and we're so gracious to both for all they have done to promote first-class racing at Homestead-Miami Speedway. To deliver the command for Saturday's Championship is a sincere thank you to a couple of IndyCar's best while racing on their home track of Homestead-Miami Speedway."

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09/28/10
automotive
irl

23 Groups Urge EPA to Bar 12 Percent Ethanol in Gasoline
A diverse group of 23 environmental, consumer, food, auto and other industry organizations today asked the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to deny a request by ethanol manufacturers seeking authorization for the sale of gasoline containing 12 percent ethanol (E12). 

The groups include the Natural Resources Defense Council, National Consumers League, Association of International Automobile Manufacturers, Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, National Marine Manufacturers Association, and Grocery Manufacturers Association.

In a letter to EPA Assistant Administrator Gina McCarthy, the organizations express concerns regarding the lack of independent testing on “mid-level” ethanol blends. The letter says increasing levels of ethanol in gasoline could pose a danger to consumer safety and could harm engines and the environment.

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09/28/10
irl

Lotus to expands to 2 Indy Cars and LeMans in 2011
Besides F1, Lotus will race in these series in 2011
Lotus will return to Le Mans in 2012 with an all-new LMP2 car.  The car is currently being developed under Lotus’s “technical genius” Paolo Catone, and will be on-track by the end of 2011.

Lotus has revealed few details about this “very special project”, but has confirmed it will be a closed-cockpit car and has been designed to conform to the new ACO rules.

The announcement was made in a detailed Lotus statement outlining its plans to once again become a major player in multiple forms of motorsport around the world.

The other big news is the confirmation of a new GT2 racer based on one of its upcoming Paris motor show road cars, believed to be the Elite.

Lotus will once again race in IndyCar in 2011 with the KV Technology team. A minimum of two cars will be entered at each event. Lotus will also be working on a new IndyCar chassis and bodywork for 2012 when there is a major change in the IndyCar regulations.

As confirmed last week, Lotus will also enter teams into the GP2 and GP3 championships for the next three years in conjunction with ART Grand Prix. The firm will also commence deliveries of its Evora GT4 car next month (20 orders have already been received) and Lotus has also revealed it will adapt the car to meet GT2 and GT3 regulations.

Lotus will also be expanding its Lotus Driving Academy (LDA) program in 2011, starting with a redevelopment of its current Hethel facility and test track. The 3.6km, 12-metre wide track will boast 12 pit-lane garages and will be able to hold 24 cars at one time. It will conform to current FIA safety regulations and will be able to hold events including GT racing and F1 testing.

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09/28/10
f1

F1 Champ Lewis Hamilton’s Dream Car
Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton’s boyhood dream of driving Ayrton Senna’s legendary McLaren MP4/4, the most successful F1 car in history, came true on world-renowned motoring program Top Gear. Now it’s your chance to watch the team’s history come alive in a spectacular McLaren Racing exhibit, headlined by Senna’s MP4/4 at the world’s greatest motorsport show, Autosport International.

The iconic MP4/4 will be the centerpiece of the stunning McLaren feature at Autosport International, held at the NEC, Birmingham, on 13-16 January 2011. Vodafone McLaren Mercedes driver Hamilton was recently given a chance to drive the car that brought the first world championship title to F1 legend Senna: “I love this car, it’s amazing,” said Lewis. “I just feel so blessed: I dreamed my whole life of driving this car.”

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09/28/10
f1

Williams' Michael scoffs at Red Bull engine complaints
(GMM)  Sam Michael has scoffed at Red Bull's claim that the Renault engines in the rear of the championship-leading RB6 are significantly down on power.

Red Bull has consistently claimed its Renault V8 is up to 30 horse power behind, revealing that McLaren is blocking its move to industry leading Mercedes.

The Austrian team is also openly upset that the FIA will not impose performance parity, with Mercedes refusing to voluntary de-tune its engines.

Bluntly, Australian Michael - technical director at Cosworth-powered Williams - denounces the saga as "bullshit".

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09/28/10
track news

Race Track sponsors driver in ALMS race
Monticello Motor Club, an automotive country club and lifestyle resort located 90 minutes from Manhattan, is sponsoring racer Eric Lux in his debut drive in the Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. Lux of Williamsville, NY will be co-driving the #36 Genoa Racing Oreca LMPC entry with Frankie Montecalvo of Highlands, NJ and Denver, CO’s Alex Figge. The car had a podium finish in its last race at Mosport while its sister car won the class.

"I am very excited to have the opportunity to race the Le Mans Series Prototype Challenge (LMPC) car for Monticello Motor Club,” said Lux. “Petit Le Mans is a historic race, and I believe this car will be an absolute blast to drive at Road Atlanta.”

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09/28/10
nassprint

Jack Roush comments on NASCAR Race Hub
NASCAR team owner Jack Roush was a guest on Monday night’s edition of NASCAR Race Hub on SPEED. Earlier this year, Roush, an avid pilot, survived his second plane crash when his Beechcraft Premiere business jet was involved in a landing accident in Wisconsin. Roush, who lost the vision in his left eye and suffered injuries to his back and face, talked about the event:

Roush: “If you are going to be dumb, you’d better be tough to survive it. I’ve certainly had good fortune … I’ve had two plane wrecks in the last eight years. They were totally different in terms of the way they developed … I’m a pilot. I have enjoyed my flying and I enjoy everything about aviation, the aviation community and the people who go with it, but it’s unfortunate that I have had these two events that have required me to recover, and, happily, I have recovered both times.”

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09/28/10
f2

Q&A with F2 champ Dean Stoneman
Dean Stoneman
A ninth place finish in race one at Valencia on Saturday 18 September secured the 2010 FIA Formula Two Championship title for Britain's Dean Stoneman, and the 20-year-old went on to celebrate his title success with a podium in race two - the final contest of the season. Speaking to www.formulatwo.com, the newly crowned champion reflects on a fantastic campaign in F2 and talks about his burning ambitions for the future...

You've had a few days now to reflect upon Valencia; how does it feel to be 2010 FIA Formula Two Champion?
It feels fantastic! After choosing to take part in Formula Two it’s been a great season - I didn't expect to win it in my first year, so to walk away with the championship is a huge achievement. I'm already getting recognized more, and yesterday Eddie Irvine phoned me following a radio interview with the BBC to offer congratulations and advice. Now the season is finished there's time to reflect, but there's also a lot to think about in the future, and hopefully winning F2 helps me get one step closer to my dream of being in Formula One.

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09/28/10
f1

Liuzzi trusts contract will keep him at Force India
Tonio Liuzzi
Tonio Liuzzi has responded to rumors that Paul di Resta might take his place at Force India next year, saying that he has a contract and strong relationship with the team.

Autosport reported last week that di Resta would take Adrian Sutil's place if the German driver moved to another team and Liuzzi's place if Sutil stayed put. However, Liuzzi said he is not worried about his position and has heard no indications that that is the case from inside the team.

"Personally I don't know if he has a place or what his contract says, but from my understanding that would mean that Adrian is out because I have a contract," he said in his ESPNF1 column. "The truth is that I haven't heard anything like that from inside the team and nothing has changed, so I can only assume that the stuff on TV and in the papers is a rumor."

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09/28/10
f1

Singapore undecided over new F1 deal beyond 2012 UPDATE Ecclestone has said he would like the Singapore race to be staged for the next 20 years at least, but the Singaporean government was less breathless when quizzed of its future.

The five-year deal to host the race runs until 2012 and the government said a thorough cost and benefit study would need to be conducted before any decision was made about an extension.

"We've gone through three quite different years in our experience with F1," Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry S. Iswaran told local media.

"They give us a good set of data points from which to assess the F1. We want to make sure the economic benefits are justifiable going forward. I would say the decision to proceed will rest on a robust cost-benefit analysis, and clearly the terms on any deal we get going forward."

The race is likely to get the thumbs up from the hotel industry with hotels reporting 90 percent occupancy for the grand prix week, Singapore daily the Straits Times reported.

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09/28/10
f1

F1 cost-cutting pact discussed in Singapore
(GMM)  A major topic of conversation during a team bosses meeting in Singapore was the so-called Resource Restriction Agreement.

At the resolution of last year's political crisis, and the signing of a new Concorde Agreement, the teams promised the FIA to reduce their spending to the levels seen in formula one in the early 90s.

The intention, championed by departed FIA president Max Mosley, was to make the sport much more affordable for private teams, like the 2010 newcomers Virgin, HRT and Lotus.

But despite receiving applications to fill the 13th team spot for 2011, the FIA ruled that none had the necessary financial resources, and there are signs that some of the sport's existing teams are also struggling.

"Many of the technical changes that were brought in to reduce costs haven't done so, and in many cases they have actually increased costs," Lotus team boss Tony Fernandes told F1's official website.

Read more & Comment...
09/28/10
f1

Hamilton has 'changed attitude' after recent crashes
After banging his wheels with just about everyone to bully his way through and win his only F1 title, this year that aggressive style has come back to bite Hamilton on the posterior.
(GMM)  After crashing out of the consecutive Italian and Singapore grands prix, Lewis Hamilton has vowed a different approach to the remaining races in 2010.

Before his terminal crash into Felipe Massa at Monza, and then Mark Webber last Sunday, the McLaren driver was considered a favorite for the world championship.

But he is now 20 points adrift with four - or three, depending on embattled Korea's fate - races to go.

"I've changed my attitude," he said in an interview with Salzburger Nachrichten newspaper.

"I'm not looking at the world championship any more.  I will try to win the next races but above all I want to enjoy my racing," added the Briton.

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09/28/10
f1

Tilke insists Korean GP role only 'advisory'
(GMM)  Hermann Tilke has backed Korea to finish its F1 circuit in time, but at the same time distanced himself from the Yeongam venue.

Earlier this year, the track's designer Tilke denied having expressed doubts about the 5.62 kilometer layout being ready for its inaugural race in late October.

The event is now firmly back in the headlines, after F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone expressed concerns that the Korean venue's completion is late.

"I assume the Koreans will finish in time," said German architect Tilke, founder and chief of F1's preferred circuit design company Tilke GmbH.

"I am working (on the project) only in an advisory capacity," he told Germany's Bild newspaper.

Comment
09/28/10
f1

F1 team Lotus taking naming dispute to High Court
(GMM)  F1 team Lotus Racing is taking a naming dispute with Malaysian carmaker Proton to London's High Court.

After terminating the team's license of the Lotus Racing moniker, Proton on Monday vowed to challenge boss Tony Fernandes' intention to call itself Team Lotus in 2011.

Team Lotus, separate from the Proton-owned British sports car maker Group Lotus, was sold to Fernandes by David Hunt, who acquired the name when the original team folded in the 90s.

But Proton said: "We are the owners of this brand, and will take all necessary steps to protect it."

Lotus Racing has now responded to Proton's statement.

Read more & Comment...
09/27/10
alms

Scott Tucker gunning for 2nd title
It’s Petit Le Mans week, and Scott Tucker already has one championship to his credit on the year. This weekend at Road Atlanta may deliver the biggest of his career though. Level 5 Motorsports’ owner/driver enters Petit Le Mans powered by MAZDA 2 fresh off a second straight title at the SCCA National Runoffs. He won the Touring 1 national class title for the second straight year driving a Ferrari 430 Challenge at Road America.

He’ll saddle up for the last time this year in Level 5’s two ORECA FLM09 in the LMP Challenge class, gunning for a championship in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n. Tucker is tied with Gunnar Jeannette of Green Earth Team Gunnar in the driver’s title race. Level 5 and Green Earth Team Gunnar are knotted in the team championship standings as well.

“It has been a great season for the whole Level 5 Motorsports organization, no question about it,” Tucker said. “We’re incredibly focused on winning and have been able to earn some big wins this year. We’ve got one more race to go and everything is on the line. This is all you can ask for as a driver.”

At the Road America Runoffs, Tucker began his championship race from the pole position. His broke his own race lap record, which was 0.2 seconds better than his qualifying time.

Comment
09/27/10
irl
alms

Tix Signs on with Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach
The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach announced today that Tix, whose headquarters are in Long Beach, has signed on as an Official Sponsor and ticketing services provider for the event.

Tix is a leading provider of integrated box office software and online ticket sales and services for arts, entertainment and sporting events. Tix specializes in providing integrated turn-key services for online and box office ticket sales and administration.  Tix's features include private label branding, online seat selection, seat view, and print-at-home ticketing to benefit the customer's experience, increase attendance, and minimize costs.

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09/27/10
fil

Battistini Joins Bryan Herta Autosport
Four-time Firestone Indy Lights race winner Dillon Battistini will team with Bryan Herta Autosport for the season-ending Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka 100 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on October 2. Battistini, a former winner on the 1.5-mile oval in his series debut two years ago, will pilot the #29 William Rast/Forsythe Solutions/NetApp entry.

“Homestead is an important race for us as we welcome back the support of Forsythe Solutions and the addition of NetApp alongside our partner William Rast,” said team co-owner Bryan Herta.

“Dillon is an accomplished winner on the ovals and we are excited to have him join the team this weekend. Hopefully, this will be another step forward for him in reaching his goal of competing here full time next season.”

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09/27/10
f1

Lotus Racing, Group Lotus and Proton
SM Nasarudin, Kamarudin Meranun and Tony Fernandes, the three shareholders of Lotus Racing, announced on Friday 24th September that Team Lotus is back in Formula One™ from 2011. Lotus Racing has competed in the 2010 FIA Formula One World Championship under license from Group Lotus parent company Proton, and today Lotus Racing Chief Executive Officer Riad Asmat shed more light on why Team Lotus is coming back for the first time since 1994 in the 2011 Championship.

Riad Asmat: "This has been an incredible year for everyone associated with Lotus Racing. Last week we brought Team Lotus back to the Formula One grid when we announced that we had bought Team Lotus Ventures from David Hunt, and would be racing as the successor to one of the most iconic names in world motorsport. This year, we have established ourselves as the leading new team in Formula One™ as a licensee of Group Lotus, and, although we all dreamt of bringing Team Lotus back to where it belongs, we could not do so in 2010 because those rights were owned by Team Lotus Ventures. As Tune Group has now bought Team Lotus Ventures it means we can now use the Team Lotus name for 2011 and beyond. We are all delighted we can go into 2011 with total confidence in what we own, and what we can take to the track.

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09/27/10
f1

F1 teams concerned about Korea GP fate
(GMM)  Two of F1's leading team bosses have admitted they, like F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone, have concerns about the forthcoming Korean grand prix.

On paper, there are four races left to run on the 2010 calendar, but real concerns that the new Yeongam circuit will not be ready to host its inaugural race on October 24.

The FIA rules require new tracks to pass a final inspection three months before their first race.  But the governing body and Ecclestone have allowed Korea to delay its inspection until October 11 -- when air fares and hotels will be booked, and much of F1's freight en route to the east Asian nation.

Another crucial consideration is that whether there are 3 or 4 races left to run has an impact on how the teams – particularly those battling for the title – will approach the rest of the season.

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09/27/10
irl

Conquest Racing to run Sebastien Saavedra
Sebastien Saavedra
Conquest Racing will have another rookie among its team when it takes on the season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway October 2 with Sebastien Saavedra taking over driving duties of the #36 Conquest Racing machine.

The Cafes do Brasil Indy 300 will be the second IZOD IndyCar Series event for the Colombian who made his series debut at this year’s Indianapolis 500. Additionally, Saavedra made 11 starts in Firestone Indy Lights in 2010 with Bryan Herta Autosport scoring one win from pole at Iowa Speedway and claiming five top five finishes.

“I’m really happy to have an opportunity to drive for Conquest Racing at the last race of the 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway on October 2nd,” said Sebastien Saavedra. “It will be tough because I have not driven an Indy car for four months but I am up to the challenge. Fortunately I have a test day to prepare for the weekend. The IZOD IndyCar Series is my main focus for 2011, so it’s really important to have an opportunity to start preparing now. Finally, to have my good friend Bertrand Baguette as a teammate means a lot.”

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09/27/10
f1

Proton says Fernandes may not call F1 team 'Lotus'
(GMM)  Malaysian carmaker Proton on Monday vowed to challenge Tony Fernandes' intention to brand his formula one team 'Team Lotus' in 2011 and beyond.

In 2010, airline millionaire Fernandes' new team has been called 'Lotus Racing', with the name officially licensed by the separate British carmaker Group Lotus.

But Group Lotus is now ramping up its motor racing efforts, including by allying with GP2 team ART next year.  It is believed the carmaker therefore decided to retract the naming license for Fernandes' team.

Air Asia chief Fernandes has therefore bought the separate Team Lotus name from David Hunt.  But Group Lotus said in a statement on Monday that it will resist Fernandes' intention to call his F1 team Lotus in 2011.

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09/27/10
nassprint

NASCAR confiscates more cars and engines
After the AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway Sunday, NASCAR took the cars of #48-Johnson, #24-Gordon, and #33-Bowyer back to the R&D Center for further inspection. In addition, the engines of #48-Johnson, #31-Burton, #2-Busch, #99-Edwards, and #18-Busch were taken as follow up to dyno tests conducted after the Michigan race.

Comment
09/27/10
f1

F1 teams shift focus to 2011
Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali believes the title will now be decided by a psychological battle between the drivers and a reliability contest between the teams, as development of the cars slows and the focus shifts to 2011.

After winning the Singapore Grand Prix, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso moved to second in the drivers' championship, just 11 points off leader Mark Webber, with the top five covered by just 25 points.

While Red Bull still appears to have an overall performance advantage, the difference is now marginal and dependant on the circuit type. Ferrari is at a disadvantage as Alonso has used all eight of his allocated engines for the season, and will have to make two used engines last the rest until Abu Dhabi.

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09/27/10
f1

Bridgestone says Webber was very lucky
Mark Webber
Bridgestone's Hirohide Hamashima has revealed that Mark Webber was extremely lucky to finish the Singapore GP as his tire was on the verge of coming off its rim.

Webber, who pitted on lap 4 of the 61-lap Singapore GP, suffered a collision with Lewis Hamilton on Lap 36, causing his front right tire to come loose of its rim.

In fact, in the hours after Webber crossing the line in third place, Bridgestone inspected his tire and found that it was just 5mm away from slipping off entirely.

"He was very, very lucky. It was just 5mm from slipping off," Bridgestone's director of motorsport tire development Hamashima told Autosport. "If it had slipped off then the pressure would probably have gone down.

Read more & Comment...
09/27/10
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Monday
  • Singapore was 'one-off' race for HRT - Klien
  • Force India missing Sauber-departed Key - Sutil
  • Scare for McLaren in new front wing's transit
  • Criticism for Massa after saying title chances over
  • Massa's ninth engine used as precaution - Ferrari 

    Read more & Comment...
09/27/10
f1

Ecclestone now admits Korea situation 'not good' UPDATE (GMM)  Race organizers hit back on Monday amid widespread reports the inaugural Korean grand prix was in real danger of being called off.

F1 teams, media and personnel are concerned that - despite FIA rules requiring a final track inspection 90 days before a new event - the uncertainty about Korea is still growing just three weeks before they are due to fly to the east Asian nation.

The final inspection deadline is becoming farcical, with a Korean official now confirming that it will take place on October 11 -- after much of the sport's freight has left Suzuka.

There is also the issue of the world championship, with the title protagonists not really sure if there are 3 or 4 contests still to run.

Read more & Comment...
09/27/10
irl

IndyCar's post-Homestead work list
I know this will be news to all but a sliver of the American sporting public, but the IndyCar season sunsets this Saturday afternoon at Homestead-Miami Speedway. It's been yet another year where off-the-track action drew more attention than who won the Indianapolis 500 or the most races.

I credit new CEO Randy Bernard for his ideas, energy and most especially his outreach. It's quite possible Bernard sought out the views of more people this season than Frasco, Caponigro, Stokkan, Craig, Heitzler, Johnson, Hauer, Long, Mehl and George did in the last 30 years. That was the smart thing to do, since, as Randy admitted, he had never been to an IC race before taking this job. I'm sure he learned a lot. One thing I really hope he started to get a handle on: Who has something useful to say; and who can't be trusted. Who has experience and accomplishments to offer an informed opinion; and who just has a big mouth.

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09/26/10
f1

Hülkenberg also handed 20-second penalty
Williams’ Nico Hülkenberg has become the second driver to receive a post-race penalty of 20-seconds in Singapore, dropping the German down to tenth position.

Having crossed the finish line ninth, the 2010 rookie was promoted to eighth when Adrian Sutil’s Force India was given an identical penalty for gained an advantage by running off the race track at Turn 7.

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09/26/10
f1

Video: Kovalainen's Lotus burns in Singapore


Comment
09/26/10
racing news

World Racing debut AMG Mercedes SLS at the Nürburgring
The Mercedes SLS is hit from behind and sustains rear end damage
Patrick Van Doorn
The AMG Mercedes SLS GT3 made its debut at the Nürburgring yesterday during the 42nd Barbarossapreis. Bernd Schneider qualified the car in 3rd position in its maiden outing but nearly did not survive the opening lap in the Mercedes Arena ironically. He was hit by the Phoenix Audi R8 LMS of Frank Stippler who was out on the spot.

Stippler was also hit from behind.

The Mercedes SLS makes its racing debut
Willem J. Staat
Schneider managed another lap around the Nordschleife but needed a 25 min repair to re-join the race. Former DTM racers Bernd Schneider and Thomas Jäger finished 89th overall but won their class.

The race was won by the Manthey Porsche 911 GT3 driven by the team of Richard Westbrook/Lucas Luhr ahead of Romain Dumas/Arno Klasen also with a Manthey Porsche. For the last two long distance events around the famous Nordschleife, Mercedes Benz will enter two cars.

Comment
09/26/10
f1

Sutil penalized - drops to 10th place
Adrian Sutil was handed a 20-seconds penalty at the end of the race, dropping him from 8th to 10th place in the results. The Force India-Mercedes driver cut Turn 7 on the opening lap and the Stewards of the Meeting considered he gained an advantage, handing him a penalty.

This promotes Nico Hulkenberg to 8th place and Felipe Massa to 9th, leaving Force India and Williams tied with 59 points as they fight for 6th place in the Constructors' Championship.

Comment
09/26/10
f1

HD likely for F1 broadcasts in 2011 - Ecclestone
(GMM)  Bernie Ecclestone boosted the hopes of F1's global television audience on Sunday by indicating the sport will be broadcast in high definition next year.

Earlier in 2010, despite the FOTA fan survey showing that 70 per cent of fans wanted HD broadcasts, F1 chief executive Ecclestone said 2011 was "too soon" for the introduction of the newer technology.

"I think we'll be moving to high definition probably next year," he told BBC pundit Eddie Jordan in Singapore on Sunday.

It is believed this year's on-track action is being filmed in HD, although that feed is not yet offered to broadcasters.

Many sports have been broadcast in HD for years.

Comment
09/26/10
f1

Webber extends lead despite Hamilton collision
(GMM)  Mark Webber extended his championship lead to 11 points on Sunday night, despite finishing on the lowest step of the podium and colliding with Lewis Hamilton during a long and hot Singapore grand prix.

The Australian finished behind pole sitter and winner Fernando Alonso, as well as his Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel.

At the checkered flag just before the 2 hour time limit was up, Ferrari's Spaniard and German Vettel were separated by just 3 tenths of a second.

But Vettel's points gap to Webber, who was a further half minute behind the leading battle at the finish, is still more than 20 points.

Webber's closest challenger is now Alonso, who has won the last two races from pole position in the resurgent Ferrari.

Read more & Comment...
09/26/10
irl
nnw

Danica does ovals UPDATE The same reader writes, Dear AutoRacing1.com, On lap 70 of Saturday's Nationwide race at Dover, Danica Patrick blew her right-front tire and slammed the wall. She had already been three laps down - three laps by lap 70 already, suffering through another poor performance in her seventh Nationwide start. Tim Purdy

09/25/10 A reader writes, Dear AutoRacing1.com, I have to comment on Danica Patrick's recent comments whereby she expressed disappointment with the dropping of ISC tracks by the IndyCar series. Well of course she is disappointed.  She is a backmarker on road courses and ovals where you need talent to really drive the car.  The cookie cutter 1.5-mile ISC ovals are 100% throttle affairs so Danica runs well on them.  The media needs to stop treating Danica with kid gloves.  Is she a great driver or just a show piece for IndyCar and NASCAR?  Tim Purdy

Comment
09/26/10
f1

Domenicali: No truth to Massa rumors
Stefano Domenicali says he's getting rather "bored" with rumors claiming that Robert Kubica will replace Felipe Massa next season.  As the silly season hits high gear, fresh reports claim that Kubica is on his way to Ferrari next season to team up with Fernando Alonso while Massa is heading to Sauber.

However, Ferrari's team boss insists there is no absolutely truth to the rumors.

Asked in Singapore whether he could 'put that story to bed completely and tell us it's rubbish', he said: "Absolutely.

"I totally underline what you've said, because I think it's getting boring news.  Every day there is something new on that and I tell you that Peter (Sauber) and I meet a lot of times because we have a good professional relationship, so I can confirm what you said, absolutely."

Comment
09/26/10
f1

Ninth engine for Massa
After failing to complete even one flying lap in qualifying ere at the Singapore street circuit yesterday, Ferrari driver Felipe Massa will start this evening’s fifteenth round of the 2010 season with a brand new engine and gearbox.

Because he will be starting from the back of the grid anyway, the Maranello based squad opted to change both his engine and gearbox to give him the best possible chance of fighting back through this evening’s race.

However, this will be Massa’s ninth engine this season, one more than the allowed eight and will need to last him for the rest of the season, or else he will face a ten place grid drop, unless of course he is in the same position and starting from the back of the grid anyway and a demotion wont mean anything.

Comment
09/26/10
f1

FIA hands out selection of fines on Saturday
Saturday in Singapore marked a busy day for the FIA F1 race stewards, who were required to give out a total of seven penalties ranging from a reprimand to a fine of 20,000 dollars from across the third free practice session and qualifying.

This weekend the three usual adjudicators are joined by American and former racing driver Danny Sullivan, who first took on the role for the German Grand Prix in July. 

FIA Communications, Saturday 25 September:


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09/26/10
nassprint

Harvick, Hamlin exchange words Saturday morning
Kevin Harvick showed he had his teammate's back by damaging Denny Hamlin's rear. After Hamlin bumped Harvick on the track, the top two points leaders were involved in a heated and profane exchange in the garage, sparking some life into the first practice Saturday at Dover International Speedway. The dustup came a day after Hamlin blasted Clint Bowyer, saying Harvick's RCR teammate was making excuses for why his winning car at New Hampshire failed a follow-up inspection. Harvick appeared to stick up for Bowyer not with words, but with force. Hamlin knew he'd be a target when he said Harvick's crew made sarcastic comments toward him before practice. Hamlin, who said he expected retaliation for his antagonistic criticism, said Harvick also got into the #11 Toyota on pit road. Hamlin and Harvick made contact during the opening laps of practice, with Harvick damaging the right rear of Hamlin's No. 11 car. Once the drivers returned to the garage, they got into each other's faces before they were separated. Tempers quickly flared again and they went back to yelling at each other before they were broken up for good. Associated Press/ESPN.com

Comment
09/26/10
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Sunday
  • McLaren eyes Vettel but Button wants to stay
  • Alonso's face turns red after Vettel 'crashgate' joke
  • Singapore defends turn 10 safety after Hamilton complaint
  • Still no number 1 status for Webber at Red Bull
  • Sauber 'expected too much' of Heidfeld return
  • Drivers eye skies hours before Singapore race
  • Haug insists 'no cracks' in Mercedes team harmony
  • Korea GP cancellation rumors 'rubbish' - Ecclestone

    Read more & Comment...
09/25/10
Racing News

Rally driver Jimmy Girvan dies in competition
A driver has been killed in the Colin McRae Forest Stages car rally in Aberfeldy, Perthshire.  The event was cancelled following the death, at about 1245 BST on Saturday, of Jimmy Girvan, 56.  The former Scottish Rally Champion's Subaru Impreza collided with boulders and then crashed into trees at the Griffin section of the course.  Mr Girvan's navigator, Mike Ramsay, was cut free from the vehicle, but he was not seriously hurt.

He was taken to Ninewells Hospital in Dundee where he was treated for an arm injury.

The rally is held in memory of world championship winning rally driver McRae who died in a helicopter crash three years ago.  Tayside Police said the event's chief medical officer pronounced Mr Girvan, who is from the Inverness area, dead at the scene. Rally organizers cancelled the event straight after the accident as a mark of respect.

The section of road where the collision took place has been closed off to allow Tayside Police crash investigators to examine the scene and safely remove the rally car. BBC

Comment
09/25/10
f1

Webber admits he is too slow
F1 points leader Mark Webber is the lowest-placed runner on the grid ahead of Sunday’s Singapore Grand Prix, in which the Australian will line up fifth behind rivals Fernando Alonso, team-mate Sebastian Vettel and the two McLarens. 

Red Bull have long since been tipped to dominate in Singapore, not least following Webber’s crushing defeat of the opposition on the Monaco street circuit back in May, although the Queanbeyan man admits that more pace is needed from himself.

“A little bit,” he told BBC Sport when asked if fifth was a result to be disappointed about. “I knew the front row would be very competitive today but I couldn’t have done a lap to be on the front row

“It could be worse, it could be better - we’ll have to hang in there but we’ll hope for a strong race tomorrow. I’ve been having trouble getting the rhythm here and I know there’s a few places where I’m losing time.

“I wasn’t fast enough, it’s as simple as that. Fernando got the pole and fair play to them.”

Comment
09/25/10
f1

Massa admits gearbox issue
Felipe Massa has verified that it was a gearbox problem which forced him to stop in Singapore Grand Prix qualifying on Saturday evening. As a result, Ferrari cars now bookend the grid and the Brazilian starts in 24th and last at the track on which he recorded its first pole position in 2008.

Having firstly suspected an engine issue, Massa stopped immediately in qualifying as his stricken Ferrari brought out the red flags.

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09/25/10
f1

Petrov admits error
Vitaly Petrov put his hands up following Singapore Grand Prix qualifying on Saturday night, from which he retired followed a crash at Turn 5.

After spinning on a wet kerb at Spa and holding up Timo Glock in a clear albeit unintentional blocking move at Monza, Petrov’s Marina Bay qualifying slip-up is his third at as many consecutive race meetings.

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09/25/10
f1

New Klien sponsor added to HRT livery in Singapore
(GMM) Another possible reason for Christian Klien's graduation to the HRT race cockpit became clearer at Singapore on Saturday.

On Friday, team boss Colin Kolles announced that the Spanish team's reserve driver would be taking over from Sakon Yamamoto for this race due to the Japanese driver suffering from food poisoning.

Asked if Yamamoto will be back in the car at Suzuka in two weeks, he said: "This is what we expect, yes."

Read more & Comment...
09/25/10
f1

Chandhok draws blank on Yamamoto conspiracy theory
(GMM)  Karun Chandhok on Saturday refused to buy into a conspiracy theory surrounding the occupant of his old HRT race cockpit this weekend.

Many paddock figures were bemused on Friday when, as it emerged that Sakon Yamamoto was holed up in his Singapore hotel with food poisoning, it was Christian Klien who was called up to replace the Japanese.

Indian Chandhok started the season in the Cosworth-powered car, and has been attending every race since he was sidelined in the hope of returning to the wheel.

"He had his chance," team boss Colin Kolles said.  "I think Christian also deserved a chance."

Read more & Comment...
09/25/10
track news

ISC ousts Chicagoland President
Craig Rust is out as president of Chicagoland Speedway.

John Saunders, the president of track owner International Speedway Corp., will take over while a search for a successor is under way.

ISC made the move on Friday. It comes only a month after Daytona International Speedway president Robin Braig left to "pursue other opportunities." ISC officials have already hired Joie Chitwood III as the Daytona president.

Read more & Comment...
09/25/10
nnw
nastruck

Turner Motorsports buys Braun Racing
The Turner Motorsports team has acquired the Braun Racing team, it announced on Sept. 24.

This year, Turner Motorsports races the No. 4 Chevrolet Silverado driven by Ricky Carmichael and the No. 31 Silverado driven by James Buescher in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. The team will expand to include the No. 10, No. 11, No. 32 and No. 38 Nationwide Series teams that were part of Braun Racing.

Braun’s rotating 2010 driver lineup has consisted of Kasey Kahne, Reed Sorenson, Jason Leffler, Brian Vickers, Brian Scott, David Reutimann, Tayler Malsam and Jacques Villeneuve.

The six-team effort will work out of Braun Racing’s facility in Mooresville, N.C.

Turner Motorsports says it plans to race three trucks and three Nationwide cars next season.

Comment
09/25/10
lmes

Toyota, Nissan to supply engines
Toyota and Nissan will return to Le Mans-style racing next season as engine suppliers. The Rebellion team’s LMP1 Lola prototypes, currently fitted with Judd V10s, will be powered by 3.4-liter, 540 hp V8 engines that have been proven in Toyota’s Lexus-badged cars in the All-Japan Super GT series. The manufacturer insists that this is purely a commercial deal and there is no factory involvement. However, Toyota has been evaluating a full factory return to sports-car racing for some time.

Meanwhile, NISMO--Nissan's performance arm--has signed a contract appointing Zytek Motorsport in the U.K. as the sales and service agent for the 4.5-liter V8 engine that it has developed for next year’s LMP2 category.

Comment
09/25/10
f1

Ecclestone says F1s focus on Asia inevitable
Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone said Asia would becoming central for motor racing and its premier competition as the sport moved away from its traditional heartland of Europe and the West, a media report said on Saturday.

“For years and years, I have been saying the world has been moving this way (to Asia), moving east, not west,” Straits Times newspaper quoted Ecclestone as saying.

Given the growth of motorsport in Asia, the shift to the East was inevitable, Ecclestone said ahead of Sunday’s third night Grand Prix in the city state.

In this year’s Formula One calendar, seven out of 19 races are in Asia. Next season, an additional Asian Grand Prix is planned in India.

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09/25/10
f1

Korea officials in Singapore for GP crisis talks
(GMM)  Officials of the embattled Korean grand prix are in the paddock this weekend for crisis talks with F1's governing body.

As previously reported, Charlie Whiting did not inspect the new Yeongam circuit as scheduled earlier this week.

It was believed that September 28 had been installed as the new final inspection date, giving the organizers more time to lay the crucial final layer of asphalt.

However, according to the Associated Press news agency and the Telegraph newspaper, the official reason for the September 21 delay was an unforeseen Korean national holiday.

Read more & Comment...
09/25/10
f1

Sutil fined $10,000 for Friday incident
Adrian Sutil has been handed a fine of 10,000 dollars (6,300 pounds) for an incident considered dangerous by Formula 1 governing body the FIA in Singapore’s second free practice session on Friday.

The moment began when the Force India became airborne over the curbs of the Singapore Sling Chicane before landing heavily and destroying its front suspension.

However, despite the loose wheel, the German failed to stop immediately.

‘The driver, having experienced serious mechanical difficulties, did not leave the track as soon as it was safe to do so, and this was also potentially dangerous to spectators, marshals and other drivers,’ reads an FIA statement.

Comment
09/25/10
f1

5-place grid drop penalty for Hülkenberg
Williams driver Nico Hülkenberg has been handed a 5-place grid penalty ahead of tonight’s qualifying session in Singapore.

Having changed his gearbox following the first two practice sessions on Friday, the German will now fall five places lower on the starting grid from where he qualifies.

As usual, the penalty will be applied after the qualifying session has finished and will therefore not prevent the 2009 GP2 Champion from moving into phases Q2 or Q3, should he circulate quickly enough to do so.

Comment
09/25/10
nassprint

NY Media has zero interest in NASCAR
The powers that be at NASCAR must surely be shaking their heads at the current state of affairs in the sport, at least from the public relations perspective.

In spite of all the changes that have been made, from double file restarts, ‘boys have at it’ to green-white-checkered finishes, as well as one of the most competitive, wide-open Chase battles ever this year, the negative publicity continues to pile up, taking away attention of all the good things happening in the sport.

It all started in the last few weeks with NASCAR went into the Chase with their top twelve championship competitors set.  The sport was ready to wow the media in one of the biggest public relations venues, New York City.

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09/25/10
f1

Singapore GP: Vettel tops final practice
Ahead of qualifying, Sebastian Vettel topped the final practice session for Sunday's Singapore Grand Prix F1 race.  Ferrari's Fernando Alonso finished second, 0.622 seconds down on the German, with Lewis Hamilton third and Felipe Massa fourth.

Nico Rosberg was fifth for Mercedes, just over one second adrift. Mark Webber was sixth in the second Red Bull, with Nico Hulkenberg seventh.

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09/25/10
f1

Schumacher says not returning to retirement UPDATE The 41-year-old pointed to his days at Ferrari, the team he joined in 1996 before going on to win his first of five titles with the Scuderia in 2000, as an indication that winning World titles "is a process."

"Naturally if we knew exactly all the situation we would simply stop and change it. It is a process. And if you think in my first activity with Benetton it took me about four years to build up and finally win a Championship, in Ferrari it took me five years and I hope we are much more efficient here.

"It is a process of getting things together with the engineer, working very closely and setting up as much as possible to our needs. We are more limited, we have tires that are given and a car that has a certain characteristic and certainly in a way I do feel that the harmony between these two components and myself is not yet given. We are working to make it in harmony.

"It is a process of still growing together, setting up and creating the structure to be ready for next year. Not only in the factory in developing of the car but from the team side, increasing the number of ideas and whenever you go out, even with a car that hasn't developed, you still learn.

"It is a bit more tough because you are competing for not winning races but as we see in Monza, we did quite a reasonable job from my point of view and I guess we can have a few more reasonable results this year."

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09/25/10
f1

'Red Bull drivers free to race'
Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz insists he will not impose team orders on his drivers, leaving them free to race each other.

With the Championship going down to the wire, Mark Webber is leading the standings on 187 points while his team-mate Sebastian Vettel is also still in the hunt, 24 points off the pace.

"We support Mark and Sebastian as always. They are free to race. As long as one of them is not out as a Championship contender, we will not interfere at all," Mateschitz told Autosport.

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09/25/10
f1

High pressure on Schumacher in 2011
Former triple World Champion Sir Jackie Stewart believes that Michael Schumacher’s Formula 1 career will be over, should he not finish ahead of Mercedes GP team-mate Nico Rosberg next season.

The German is set to finish ninth overall in his F1 comeback season although, with this year’s car having been built with former driver Jenson Button in mind, Sir Jackie stresses that the emphasis is now completely on next year.

“I don’t think he’s got a choice,” the Scot said whilst commentating for BBC Sport on Friday, with regards to whether Schumacher should stay put next year.

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09/25/10
alms

Wallace to race Jaguar at Petit LeMans
JaguarRSR is pleased to announce that Andy Wallace will join the team's two-car effort for the Petit Le Mans, the final round of the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n, September 29 - October 2.

Wallace is a British sports car legend, who is no stranger to Jaguars. He assisted the marque to its memorable victory in the 1988 Le Mans 24 Hours and the 1990 Daytona 24 Hours. Following those career highlights, his resume was enhanced by two more victories in the Daytona 24 Hours (1997, 1999), two victories in the Sebring 12 Hours (1992, 1993), and one victory in the Petit Le Mans (1999).

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09/25/10
f1

Latest F1 news in brief - Saturday
  • Ecclestone wants Singapore GP unchanged 'for 20 years'
  • Vettel suspected secret team orders during Monza race
  • Boullier seeks to know Raikkonen's 'motivation' for F1 return
  • Button admits Hamilton has been faster in 2010
  • Heidfeld sympathizes after ousting friend de la Rosa
  • Villeneuve likely to switch sights to NASCAR

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