Audi clinches all DTM titles It was a perfect 2011 DTM season for Audi: After Martin Tomczyk’s early win of the drivers title, the brand with the four rings at the Hockenheim finale in front of an impressive crowd of 120,000 spectators (throughout the weekend) secured the position of the runner-up in the championship and won the team classification as well. Edoardo Mortara had previously been determined as "Rookie of the year."
"You can’t really wish for more than this," commented Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich after the finish at the Hockenheimring. "It’s truly been a perfect year for Audi. And today we clinched everything we still had on our agenda: the runner-up’s slot for ‘Eki’ and the team classification win for Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline - my thanks go to everyone who has had a part in this great success for Audi."
Jamie Green (Mercedes-Benz) is the winner of the DTM season finale at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg. The Brit dominantly won the 38 lap race after having taken the lead right after the start already. Second place in the final round of the season went to the newly-crowned DTM champion Martin Tomczyk (Audi).
At the finish, the German was 7.620 seconds down on the winner. Miguel Molina (Audi) rounded out the podium at Hockenheim after securing his maiden podium finish in third place. Behind Mike Rockenfeller (Audi) and Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz), Mattias Ekström (Audi) crossed the finish line in sixth place. Thus, the Swede secured himself runner-up spot.
Honda mourns loss of Simoncelli Today we are very sad to announce that HRC rider Marco Simoncelli has lost his life in a racing accident at the Sepang circuit. The 24 year old Italian was involved in an accident on lap two of the Malaysian GP. The race was instantly red flagged, and later cancelled. Medical staff were on the scene immediately and he was taken to the circuit medical centre. Unfortunately Marco's injuries were too severe and at 16h56 local time he was declared dead.
Our thoughts are with his family at this tragic time.
The test scheduled for tomorrow with Dani Pedrosa and Casey Stoner on the 2012 prototypes at the Sepang Circuit has been cancelled.
(GMM) Bernie Ecclestone is confident formula one remains ahead of the pack in terms of safety.
The F1 chief executive was speaking after the death of IndyCar driver Dan Wheldon in Las Vegas last week, and before Italian MotoGP rider Marco Simoncelli was killed on Sunday in a sickening crash at Sepang.
"What a horrible week for our sport," said Team Lotus reserve driver Karun Chandhok late on Sunday.
Added his boss Tony Fernandes on Twitter: "People forget how dangerous a sport racing is."
(GMM) Karun Chandhok and his father on Sunday insisted they still do not know if the Indian will be on the inaugural Buddh grid in seven days.
Team Lotus boss Tony Fernandes has said consistently he would like to see the reserve driver contest his home grand prix, but it seems Jarno Trulli and Heikki Kovalainen are firmly under contract to race at every opportunity.
"You will definitely see me in Friday's practice session and there I will definitely give my best," the Press Trust of India quotes Karun Chandhok as saying.
Where does IndyCar go from here? In five nightmarish seconds last weekend, IndyCar found itself at a crossroads.
The hellish crash that killed Dan Wheldon and injured three others at Las Vegas Motor Speedway sent a sobering, and long overdue, message to the IZOD IndyCar Series, track promoters and the industry as a whole: These low-slung, lightweight open-wheel race cars do not belong on high-banked, intermediate ovals purpose-built for stock cars.
That eliminates about seven major markets, leaving a slew of suitable oval race tracks which have hosted IndyCar/CART events in the past, but have proven financially disastrous. Promoters at oval race tracks will, and probably should, think twice before hosting IndyCar again because right now, it’s not making sense at the gate, and the potential of a race being canceled after 12 laps because someone died a horrible death is P.R. hell.
BMW is staging a premiere at the finale of the DTM season in Hockenheim: on Sunday (23rd October), the public will have their first opportunity to see the BMW M3 DTM live on the racetrack.
Together with the other two manufacturers involved in the series, BMW will give fans a taste of what they can expect next season. BMW, Audi and Mercedes will complete demonstration laps with their new cars as part of the support program.
Fans at Hockenheim will witness the BMW M3 DTM in a new BMW livery for the first time. One car used next year will also line up with this design – as well as featuring the script ‘BMW M Performance Accessories M3 DTM’. With the BMW M Performance Accessories product range, BMW is able to allow its customers to express the classic BMW values of sportiness, dynamics and innovative technology even more emphatically.
Bobby Unser blames 'pack racing' for Wheldon accident After the death of two-time Indianapolis 500 winner, Dan Wheldon in the horrendous crash at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, many pundits have weighed in on the tragedy, blaming the track, the crowded field, and the speeds.
“It was the perfect storm,” explains Bobby Unser. “And, IndyCar racing has been very fortunate. It could've happened at anytime over the past six years, and they're very fortunate that more drivers weren't hurt in that mess at Las Vegas.
IndyCar world say goodbye to race car driver Dan Wheldon The legend of Dan Wheldon already has been writ large: the British prodigy who couldn't break into Formula 1 but won two Indy 500s, the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg and the affections of his adopted hometown.
The story ended at age 33 when he died doing what he did best: racing some of the world's fastest cars.
When his family and friends gathered Saturday with the IndyCar elite to say goodbye to Wheldon, they opened the doors to the public. Then they opened up about the Wheldon they knew.
A Driver’s Death Has Raised Questions About IndyCar’s Leader
Except for listening to some people in the IndyCar paddock about the money-losing oval track races with crowds that hurt the series image, Randy Bernard has done a great job for IndyCar so far
In the wake of Dan Wheldon’s death at a race in Las Vegas last Sunday, IndyCar officials have been all but silent. No formal statements, beyond an expression of regret and a pledge to investigate themselves. Certainly no news conferences to answer questions about the propriety of the race, which was held at a fast track not truly built to stage such an event. The IndyCar officials, after canceling their suddenly pointless championship banquet, left Las Vegas, trailing bitterness and finger-pointing.
“This wasn’t even our event,” said Jeff Motley, a communications director for Las Vegas Motor Speedway, which leased its track to IndyCar for the fatal race. “But they’ve left us to be the only ones to answer for this. There is such a thing as Crisis Management 101. And they flunked it.”
IndyCar racing, in truth, had been in some degree of crisis for more than a decade — attendance at races had slid, television ratings had fallen and a stream of drivers and fans had abandoned the sport for the more prosperous Nascar circuit.
Mark Winterbottom and Irish international co-driver, Richard Lyons have tapped into the ‘Luck of the Irish’ to win on the final day of the 2011 Armor All Gold Coast 600.
After finishing third in Saturday’s race, the Ford Performance Racing (FPR) pair continued their strong soft tire form today to charge ahead of polesitters Jamie Whincup and Sebastien Bourdais to claim this afternoon’s final 300km stanza.
After suffering on the soft tire compound for the most of the year, yesterday’s podium and today’s race win was a welcome improvement for Winterbottom.
Catchfence could have killed Andretti too Watch this video of racing great Mario Andretti's accident at Indy in 2003. He was in one of IndyCar's flying (literally) machines when he hit a small piece of debris from Kenny Brack's crash and the flying IndyCar got airborne and was ripped apart from the same type of catchfencing that killed Dan Wheldon, only Mario was lucky that his head didn't hit one of the steel poles like Wheldon.
The funeral of British racing driver Dan Wheldon has been held in his adopted hometown of St Petersburg, Florida.
Large crowds gathered to pay their respects to the 33-year-old father of two outside the First Presbyterian Church where the funeral began at 10am local time.
The front page of the order of service showed a photograph of Wheldon kissing a trophy and simply said: 'Lionheart Forever' - a reference to the nickname he earned during his career for his fearless brand of racing.
The Buckinghamshire-born driver, a former IndyCar champion and two-time Indy 500 race winner, was killed on Sunday in a 15-car pile-up at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
For the second time in his career, Miguel Molina (Audi) is on pole position for a DTM race: in qualifying for the tenth season round at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg, the Spaniard claimed the best starting grid position with his Audi A4 DTM. At Oschersleben already, the Audi driver had been unbeatable in qualifying. Jamie Green (Mercedes-Benz) will be lining up next to him on the front row of the grid.
On his fastest lap, the Brit came 0.203 seconds short of Molina’s fastest time. Audi locks out the second row of the starting grid: on Sunday, the newly-crowned DTM champion Martin Tomczyk (Audi) will start from third place. Fellow Audi driver Mike Rockenfeller will start the final round of the season from fourth position.
Ben Spies to Withdraw From Grand Prix of Malaysia Yamaha Factory Racing rider Ben Spies will not participate in tomorrow’s Grand Prix of Malaysia. Spies sustained a concussion and tearing of the soft tissue around the rib area after crashing during qualifying for the Grand Prix of Australia, preventing participation in the race. Despite starting this weekend with the full intention of racing, two further crashes during today’s practice sessions have highlighted the restrictions his injuries have imposed on his riding abilities.
Following consultation between Yamaha management and the rider it has been jointly decided that it would be wise to not participate in the race to avoid the risk of further injury. Spies will also miss Monday’s 1000cc test in Sepang.
This decision will allow Spies the optimum chance of recovery before the important final race of the season and subsequent 1000cc test at Valencia in two weeks time.
(GMM) Daniel Ricciardo is not relaxed about his future in formula one.
Recently seen as the natural successor to his countryman Mark Webber at Red Bull, the 22-year-old Australian has struggled to get up to speed with Vitantonio Liuzzi after replacing Narain Karthikeyan at HRT earlier this year.
The move was funded by his backers Red Bull but Ricciardo is contracted to the energy drinks company only to the end of 2011.
With Sebastien Buemi, Jaime Alguersuari and Jean-Eric Vergne all also in the running for Red Bull's junior seats at Toro Rosso, the West Australian newspaper concludes that Ricciardo's future is clouded.
Adrian Newey (above) drafted the open wheel concept car (top) which has features the new IndyCar should have had but does not - 1) a canopy to cover the driver, 2)wheel covers over both the front and back wheels to prevent tire to tire contact, 3) an awesome looking car instead of the hideous thing Dallara designed
The 33-year-old Englishman was killed on Sunday as one of the last drivers to become entangled in a 15-car collision at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
It is widely known in the Formula 1 paddock that any accident is regarded as highly severe by Newey, who designed the Williams which took the life of triple World Champion Ayrton Senna at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix.
“Certainly in my case, to have been in charge of the design of the car where a driver lost his life, there would be something wrong with you if you didn’t question what you were doing at that point,” Newey is quoted as saying by The Guardian.
“In the four years that I did IndyCars I was fortunate enough that there were no tragic accidents and nobody was really badly hurt. But, fundamentally, if you are racing around an oval with concrete walls and lots of cars going at very high speeds in close proximity, it is going to be a recipe for large accidents, particularly with open-wheel cars.
“It’s always a terrible moment for the sport if somebody is killed - it doesn’t matter whether it is the formula you are involved in or not. It is a shockwave for the sport that we always need to learn. We are all aware of the fact that it exists, but it is one thing being aware of it and another thing when it happens.”
Tony Stewart says death in racing always a threat Tony Stewart competes in NASCAR. His heart, though, belongs to open-wheel racing, and he spent the first 25 years of his life trying to get to Indianapolis Motor Speedway. When he did, in 1996, he and teammate Scott Brayton qualified first and second. Six days later, Brayton was killed during a practice run, on an oval track.
Stewart, a rookie that year, continued on every day at Indianapolis, started his first 500 nine days later and led 44 laps until his engine blew -- finally bringing an end to what was supposed to be a celebration of him fulfilling his lifelong dream.
But that's what racers do. They race, and they'll race this weekend at Talladega Superspeedway, where NASCAR becomes the first major series to run since Dan Wheldon died Sunday in the IndyCar season finale.
"It doesn't affect us, getting back in the car," Stewart said Friday at Talladega. "We all know that can happen every week. It's been a part of racing forever.
Paul Tracy talks about being in middle of Wheldon accidentUPDATE
Tracy's helmet from Las Vegas. The black mark on the visor is from Pippa Mann's tire as she flew over his car. Tracy said her car broke part of his steering wheel as well. And the new IndyCar exposes the driver's head more that the existing car - a major design flaw by Dallara. The driver must duck for flying wheels, pieces of suspension from another car, and catch fence poles
Paul Tracy was on TSN 990 radio in Montreal Friday and said, he is still in shock about what happened to Dan Wheldon. His wife and mother want to quit as he does not need the money. He said he was lucky to have walked away since Pippa Mann came across his cockpit, broke the steering wheel he was holding on to and glanced off his helmet.
He feels the new car is all wrong. A little carbon fire at the back won't prevent cars flying when you have large impacts. He said nobody has listened to the drivers complaints about flying cars in 8 years and the new car wasn’t designed with any input from the drivers as far as he knew. What struck him when he sat in the new car his head and neck were far more exposed then the current car and had he been in one in Vegas he would probably be dead because Mann's car would have ripped his head off. We noted this major design flaw in this article titled Houston (IndyCar) We have a Problem, hence why we immediately called for a complete redesign of the car. In lieu of that we suggested an F16 Fighter Jet canopy be placed on top of the cockpit.
10/20/11 In this Sportsnet 590 radio interview (MP3 File - takes time before audio starts) Paul Tracy tells the gruesome details about what it was like to be in the middle of the big accident at Las Vegas Motor Speedway that took the life of Dan Wheldon. He talks about what he saw on the track and afterward in the medical center. Fan590.com
The V8 Supercars Championship landscape has changed with Jamie Whincup taking back the Championship lead from teammate Craig Lowndes after race one of the Armor All Gold Coast 600 on the Surfers Paradise Street Circuit in Queensland today.
Jamie Whincup and international leading driver Sebastien Bourdais won the race, making Bourdais the only driver to win on the Gold Coast circuit in both an IndyCar and a V8 Supercar.
Ford Performance Racing also had a stellar day, following Team Vodafone with Will Davison and Mika Salo in second place and Mark Winterbottom and last minute replacement international driver Richard Lyons third.
Pedrosa takes pole as Repsol Honda Team dominates front row
Dani Pedrosa at Sepang
The Repsol Honda Team could not have asked for a better qualifying session in the Malaysian Grand Prix after all three riders took front row spots in a very demanding and intense session.
Dani Pedrosa took his second pole of the season (third one in MotoGP at the Sepang circuit) with 2011 World Champion Casey Stoner in second, just 0.029 off the Spaniard and Andrea Dovizioso in third.
Pedrosa, who has been the fastest all weekend, continued his dominance in qualifying even after crashing at the beginning of the session. The time of 2'01.462 achieved on his 18th lap, put Dani out of reach from Casey (2'01.491) and Andrea (2'01.666), who fought until the last seconds for pole position.
India GP snared in tax dispute India's Supreme Court Friday ordered the organizers of the country's first Formula One race to freeze 25 percent of revenues from ticket sales in a bank account until a tax dispute is resolved. Justice D.K Jain and A.R Dave directed the organizers to open a separate bank account and deposit the money until a ruling has been given on the case, which comes just over a week before the event.
An activist has filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the court challenging a tax break given to the organizers, Jaypee Group, by the local state government where the circuit has been constructed.
Donations come in from all over for Wheldon auction Graham Rahal didn't know what he was starting when he offered to auction the race-used helmet, gloves and shoes he used in Las Vegas to raise money for the family of the late Dan Wheldon.
Rahal's gesture began an outpouring of support from celebrities and athletes around the world who wanted to donate memorabilia to raise money for the Dan Wheldon Family Trust Fund.
"I certainly appreciate everyone's support for Dan's Memorial Auction," said Rahal, who recently completed his first season with Chip Ganassi Racing. "I never thought when I tweeted about auctioning my helmet that we would get this kind of reaction."
Explanation of how canopies can save open wheel driversUPDATE This ESPN article talks about how hydroplane racing thought closed cockpits could not be done but they have saved countless lives and they are glad they implemented them.
10/19/11 A reader asks, Dear AR1.com, I know that your President Mark Cipolloni is an engineer. Can you have him explain how a canopy over a driver's head could save them from death when a 1,500 pound IndyCar hits a steel catch fence post. Don Block
Dear Don, Let me try to explain using simple physics.
Force = ma = mass x acceleration = m x delta v/delta t, where delta = change in, v = velocity and t = time.
Force is also defined as the change in momentum (mass * velocity) of the object with respect to time. That is:
Kyle Busch to field fulltime Nationwide team in 2012 Kyle Busch Motorsports will field a full-time car in the Nationwide Series next year in addition to its Truck Series program, team owner Kyle Busch said Friday.
Busch said the car is fully funded – a sponsorship announcement is forthcoming – and likely will run for the owners championship.
While he wouldn’t announce any drivers, Busch said it was safe to assume he would drive in select races that don’t conflict with his obligations for Joe Gibbs Racing in the Nationwide Series.
Proper IndyCar oval track racingUPDATE #2 Another reader writes, Can you, AR1.com, PLEASE help us fans? Please send a representative or even you Mark C, to hand deliver, physically sit with Mr. Bernard, and watch with him any of the CART IndyCar oval races listed below. They are exciting and breath taking… IndyCar Oval racing on proper IndyCar Oval tracks, with proper aero-configurations…i.e.. Hanford Device-900hp, where the drivers really have to drive, drafting is an art, and the wankers can be clearly identified. Not this stock-car pack racing crap! Daniel Saucedo
10/21/11 A reader responds, Dear AR1.com, I watched the US 500 video link you provided below. I remember that race, as I was there. Fantastic. 63 lead changes without the dangers of 'stupid' pack racing. What a show that was, and those CART IndyCars were sensational. I contrast and compare that to today's IndyCar product and I long for the past. Why can't IndyCar come up with cars that race like that. We were all on our feet most of the race. If I am Randy Bernard I am demanding that Handford Device wings be put on the new car and tested ASAP. I like the bodywork behind the rear wheels as that will stop cars from climbing over the rear wheels from behind. However, the sidepods on the new car need to be totally redone as they are ugly and do not offer enough protection. And you are right, the driver's head in the new car is even more exposed than the existing car, hence they need to test the canopy idea, which of course may mean they have to test your air conditioning idea as well. Looks like IndyCar has a lot of work to do before the new car is really safe. Tom Dillon
Handford Device on back of CART rear wings in 2001 at Fontana
A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, OK so you criticize IndyCar's 'pack' racing oval races as too dangerous. Are you proposing IndyCar not run on any ovals? Tim Perlman
Dear Tim, Watch this 1998 CART US 500 race on the 2-mile Michigan oval. That is what you call good oval track IndyCar racing, with lots of passing and without the dangerous 'packs' that Brian Barnhart and company created which can wipe out 15 cars in one fell swoop. This is what a Handford Device wing could do for IndyCar racing. But wait, it was a CART invention so it must be bad right? Let's hope Randy Bernard watches this, likes it, and makes it happen because Barnhart and company are not smart enough to create cars with aerodynamics that work like the CART IndyCars did. And I have more: 1998 Fontana 500 1999 Michigan 500 2000 Michigan 500 2001 Michigan 500 2003 German 500 Mark C.
Fisker Automotive received its U.S. Environmental Protection Agency certification this week, which means sales of the 2012 Karma sedan can begin.
The Karma is a series plug-in hybrid, powered by a lithium-ion battery and a 2.0-liter range-extending gasoline engine. The engine only turns a generator to provide electricity and charge the battery.
The all-electric range was found by the EPA to be 32 miles under its criteria. That’s less than the 50-mile range Fisker claimed earlier this year. Still, the company calculates that a Karma driver who has a 40-mile commute and starts each day with a full battery would need to visit the gas station only once every 1,000 miles. They would use about nine gallons per month, according to Fisker.
Fisker says the Karma can be recharged in about six hours on a 240-volt power supply. The Karma also accepts power from a 110-volt outlet, but recharge time is considerably longer.
Bernard calls drivers-only IndyCar meeting IndyCar Series CEO Randy Bernard has called a driver meeting for Monday to discuss Dan Wheldon's fatal accident. A series official said Friday that Bernard asked the drivers via email to meet with him at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The memo said the meeting was not mandatory and for drivers only.
Bernard said in the memo he felt it was important to discuss "recent events." Wheldon was killed Sunday in a 15-car accident at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
The funeral for the two-time Indianapolis 500 champion is Saturday in St. Petersburg, Fla. A public memorial is scheduled for Sunday in Indianapolis.
Because most drivers likely will be in Indianapolis for the service, Bernard felt he should call them together as a group to discuss the accident.
Joe Leonard has stroke 3 time AMA grand national champion, 2 time Indy Car Champion Joe Leonard suffered a devastating double stroke at his home. Joe and his Doctors have been concerned with a 70% clogged Coroted artery, due to the risk and his age, they decided not to operate. 60 days later its 100% clogged and this is the result. It was touch and go, but he has shown progress and the next 24 hrs will tell the tale.He will be transfered to an Acute rehab to help restore his abilities to function. He has memory, speech loss, and is paralyized on his entire left side. The Neurologist told us, he shouldnt have survived.
The Repsol Honda Team clearly dominated the first day of free practice in the Malaysian Grand Prix, with Dani Pedrosa leading the way.
Recently crowned World Champion, Casey Stoner ended the day in second place with Andrea Dovizioso, third. Honda bikes occupied the top five places with Marco Simoncelli and Hiroshi Aoyama, in fourth and fifth positions in the combined free practice times.
This morning Dani set a very high pace with soft tires then confirmed his speed in the afternoon by improving his lap time with hard rear tire. At the end of the afternoon session, with a new soft rear he recorded an impressive lap of 2'01.250, almost one second faster than the circuit record (Stoner, 2'02.108, 2007).
NASCAR likely to drop restrictor plates with advent of fuel injection
Trevor Bayne, driving the No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford, drafts with teammate David Ragan, driver of the No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford, during EFI testing at Talladega Superspeedway
Ten NASCAR teams participated in a fuel injection test on a restrictor-plate track Thursday for the first time, and while it won’t be the last, there might be a glimmer of hope that Talladega Superspeedway and sister track Daytona International Speedway won’t be “restrictor-plate” tracks forever. The fuel-injection system NASCAR will implement in 2012 uses sensors and an electronic control unit to get the correct mix of air for the amount of fuel in the engine.
NASCAR could set the electronic control units to limit the amount of air injected into the engine rather than using a restrictor plate.
For now, NASCAR will continue to control speeds with the use the plates, positioning them at the bottom of the throttle body for Daytona and Talladega.
Justin Wilson, who broke his back during practice at Mid-Ohio in August, has been cleared to return to racing.
09/22/11 Over a month ago, Justin Wilson, pilot of the No. 22 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing entry, was involved in a single-car incident in practice for the Honda Indy 200. During the Saturday morning session in Mid-Ohio, Wilson ran off on the exit of Turn 1. As a result, he dropped two wheels off the asphalt and then went hopping through the grass, which then sent the car airborne.
Wilson sustained an anterior compression fracture of the fifth vertebra, which has kept him out of the car for the remainder of the season.
Nearly six weeks after the incident, Wilson is on the fast track to recovery and is back into training. "If I think back to how I felt immediately afterwards, and compare that with what I can do now, it's been great progress. It started to get less painful after the first two weeks and a couple of weeks ago I was able to raise my arms above my head for the first time. Now I'm in the swimming pool every day and doing some upper body exercises, so things are starting to feel normal again," commented Wilson.
Bourdais tops Friday times in Surfers The first day of on-track action in the 2011 Armor All Gold Coast 600 has kicked off with some fierce competition between both the regular drivers and their international co-drivers on the Surfers Paradise Street Circuit in Queensland today.
Championship front-runners Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes were never out of the top three throughout the day's practice sessions and neither were their international counterparts Sebastien Bourdais and Andy Priaulx; with both cars ensuring that Team Vodafone dominated the day.
Kubica still 'a few months' from recovery - Ceccarelli (GMM) Robert Kubica is unlikely to meet Renault's deadline as the team looks to finalize its driver lineup for 2012.
Boss Eric Boullier recently imposed a mid-October deadline for the Pole, who is under contract only to the end of 2011, to say whether he will definitely recover from horror injuries sustained in a February rally crash.
He has agreed to extend that deadline a little further, but Kubica's doctor this week admitted that the 26-year-old is still "a few months" from the end of his rehabilitation.
"Our goal is to get him back in F1," Dr Riccardo Ceccarelli told Tuscan television Lucca.
IndyCar injury table updated We have updated the injury table in this article we published a couple of days ago to correct two mistakes and to include injuries after the merger of the IRL and Champ Car. We used to keep accurate records of the injuries because they were so numerous, but after the merger we had stopped. We did a bit of research to add years 2007 and beyond, but we could have missed a couple.
Wind Tunnel Sunday Robin Miller will be LIVE from the Dan Wheldon Memorial from downtown Indianapolis this Sunday. Mario Andretti will also join in on the conversation as we continue our coverage of last Sunday’s IndyCar tragedy in Las Vegas. We will also talk to 2010 WoO Sprint Car Series champ, Jason Meyers, who is on the verge of clinching his 2nd straight championship. And we’ll chat with 2-time Speedway GP motorcycle racing champion, Greg Hancock, who had planned to be on last week’s show before we rescheduled his appearance to allow more time to cover the breaking news from the IndyCar event.
TRG Motorsports Fielding Two Cars in Talladega TRG Motorsports will once again be fielding two entries in this Sunday's Good Sam Club 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Andy Lally will race the No. 71 TRG Motorsports Ford Fusion while T.J. Bell will attempt to qualify the No. 77 TRG Motorsports entry into the race.
On the track, Lally, who finished 19th in the spring race at Talladega, is looking forward to returning to the venue in which he earned his best finish this season.
Public information for Dan Wheldon memorial service Oct. 23 in Indianapolis INDYCAR will hold a public memorial service to celebrate the life of IZOD IndyCar Series driver Dan Wheldon at 4 p.m. (ET) Sunday, Oct. 23 at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
The memorial also will be broadcast on www.indycar.com, VERSUS and on several Indianapolis network affiliates.
Wheldon, a two-time Indianapolis 500 winner and 2005 IZOD IndyCar Series champion, died from injuries suffered in a racing accident Oct. 16 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. He is survived by his wife, Susie, and two young sons. Wheldon was 33.
Bayne tops fuel injection test Eleven Sprint Cup Series teams on Monday at Charlotte Motor Speedway participated in the third of five NASCAR-controlled electronic-fuel-injection tests.
Several teams tested EFI at Kentucky Speedway in July and recently at Phoenix International Raceway. Other teams will test on Thursday at Talladega Superspeedway and on Oct. 31 at Martinsville Speedway. After using carburetors since its first race in 1949, NASCAR will race with electronic fuel injection for the first time next year.
Monday's day-long test featured four Chevrolets from Hendrick Motorsports, two Chevys from Stewart-Haas Racing and one Chevy each from Richard Childress Racing and Earnhardt-Ganassi-Sabates Racing. Michael Waltrip and Joe Gibbs Racing each fielded one Toyota, and Roush-Fenway Racing fielded a single Ford.
Aston Martin cans LMP1 program The Aston Martin AMR-One LMP1 sports-car racing project is almost certainly finished. Confirmation from DeltaWing designer Ben Bowlby that his innovative 2012 Le Mans contender uses the AMR-One's monocoque must mean that the decision has been made to abandon the 2011 Aston LMP1 after just two races.
The business model for the AMR-One was based on selling six cars, but two of the six tubs produced at the start of the year are now unavailable after being sold to the DeltaWing group.
Bowlby confirmed that the DeltaWing's chassis is from Aston Martin AMR-One.
"There has been some speculation, and it is accurate," he admitted. "Enough said."
AMR's official stance is that the AMR-One, which endured a short-lived Le Mans debut in June, remains under review.
Aston Martin chairman David Richards, whose Prodrive company runs AMR, was insistent last month that the car would race again, though he claimed it "might be in a different guise." That comment appears to be consistent with the DeltaWing deal. AutoWeek
Michael Waltrip Racing sues former engineer, F1 teamUPDATE #2 Michael Waltrip Racing has settled a lawsuit with a former engineer who left the organization for a Formula One team before his contract allegedly ran out. MWR had sued Mike Coughlan and the Williams F1 team in U.S. District Court in Charlotte, asking for an unspecified amount in damages for breach of contract and, against Williams, interference with the contract. In a filing Tuesday, attorneys on both sides asked the court to dismiss the case. No reason was given for the request, but Michael Waltrip Racing confirmed the settlement.
"I have always been an admirer of Frank Williams and his team and am delighted that we have found a good way forward,” MWR co-owner Rob Kauffmann said in a statement. “I wish the team well with its move back to the front of the F1 grid and am sure that Mike Coughlan can make a big contribution with that."
NASCAR plans tribute to WheldonUPDATE NASCAR will provide teams with a B-post decal in honor of Dan Wheldon for all the cars and trucks this weekend in Talladega.
The Lionheart Knight image is one that was included on the back of every one of Dan's helmets. NASCAR also is producing helmet decals for any of the drivers who would like to run a version of the decal on their helmets. The decals will be delivered trackside on Friday. As always, the decals will be provided to the teams during the inspection process throughout the course of the weekend. Additionally, some of the drivers also have their own personal plans to recognize Dan this weekend. As part of the NASCAR Pre Race run of show, NASCAR will include a moment of silence in Dan's honor prior to the invocations Saturday and Sunday. (They will not be available to the public) NASCAR
Funeral arrangements set for Dan Wheldon Funeral services for IZOD IndyCar Series driver Dan Wheldon will be held at 10 a.m. (ET), Saturday, Oct. 22, at First Presbyterian Church of St. Petersburg, 701 Beach Drive N.E. in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Wheldon's wife, Susie, released the following statement on behalf of the family, inviting members of community to attend the service:
"Although the last few days have been unbearable for our family, the overwhelming love and support we have received are rays of sunshine during these dark days. The outpouring of sympathy and condolences has been so comforting, and I want to thank everyone for their kind notes, letters, gifts and flowers.
Risks Haunted Fatal Race Sunday's IndyCar Series race here was supposed to be a showcase event for a struggling sport undergoing a transformation.
Essential to attracting new crowds, said IndyCar Chief Executive Randy Bernard, was increasing the excitement—and risks—on the racetrack.
Promotional materials for the Las Vegas race on IndyCar's website predicted "the wildest race of the season" because the track was unusually "fast and smooth."
'Danger has been an inherent part of the sport since 1909.' -- IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard .In the materials, one driver, Ryan Hunter-Reay, said, "All it takes is one mistake by one driver, and it could be huge consequences. This should be a nail-biter for the fans, and it's going to be insane for the drivers."
Chevy has record 3rd Qtr. Chevrolet sold 1.2 million vehicles globally in the third quarter, the best July-to-September results in the brand's 100-year history. In the first nine months of 2011, Chevrolet sold 3.6 million vehicles globally, positioning the brand for its best-ever calendar-year sales.
Fabio Leimer fastest but Rossi impresses The last 2011 post-season test day took place today at Circuit de Catalunya. The paddock welcomed two new faces for the occasion, namely Pole Kuba Giermaziak at iSport and Spaniard Albert Costa at Super Nova Racing. GP2 race winner Giacomo Ricci returned to the field at Super Nova, GP3 2011 runner-up James Calado rejoined Lotus ART, and Sam Bird tested again with Trident Racing.
The session opened in cooler conditions than yesterday and it was Fabio Leimer who set the early pace ahead of rookie Rio Haryanto at Dams. A red flag interrupted the proceedings in the first hour after Carlin’s Kevin Magnussen went into the gravel bed at Turn 5. At mid-session, Esteban Gutierrez went top, 0.5s quicker than Leimer while Bird slipped into P2 ahead of Kevin Ceccon. But Leimer topped the timesheet again, going 0.2s quicker than the Lotus ART ace. Minutes later, Alexander Rossi moved up to P3 but Stefano Coletti at Coloni found extra pace to edge the American out. The session was red flagged for the second time after rookie Costa stopped on track. At the re-start, Leimer held on to the top spot ahead of Bird. A final red flag happened in the dying minutes when Haryanto stopped on track. Leimer ended the morning session on top ahead of Bird and Gutierrez. Magnussen, Coletti, Ceccon, Antonio Felix Da Costa, Rossi, Haryanto and Julian Leal completed the top 10.
How to keep driver cool under a canopy A reader asks, Dear AR1, I like your idea of a canopy for IndyCars, but how do you keep the driver cool? Scott Bayard
Dear Scott, There are several things I would implement. The first would be this 22 pound air conditioning system for the driver. It would be mandatory for everyone so no one has a weight penalty. I would also tint the top of the canopy enough to keep the sun out as much as possible. And last I would have some airflow around the car directed into the cockpit.
Some people have also asked about whether a driver could be trapped in the car after an accident. There would need to be some sort of quick release mechanism for the driver. The Polycarbonate canopy would also help to keep fire and spilled fuel out of the cockpit, which is another real benefit. Mark C.
Mario Andretti saw drivers die in the four decades he was driving, and it does not get any easier
These are the latest black days in 44 years of losing friends to the sport Mario Andretti still loves unconditionally. And yet, "It's something you never get used to, I can tell you that," the best-known driver ever, in all of auto racing, said Tuesday in a subdued voice. If anything, "It gets worse .."
This was a man grieving yet again, devastated yet again, you could tell on the phone, if you'd known him long enough. Decency forbade asking him to count them all.
"There were too many," he said, at age 71.
First, at Riverside, Calif., in 1967, was Billy Foster -- "I would say today he was my closest friend in racing as a driver."
IndyCar heads down road NASCAR traveled after death of Dan Wheldon The Izod IndyCar Series has long wanted an identity. To be known for something that set it apart from NASCAR and drag racing and everything else.
It decided it wanted to be home to the fastest race cars and the most capable drivers, pilots who could handle a road course as skillfully as an oval.
The series appeared to be getting there, making modest gains in popularity.
But the high-bank, speed-inducing ovals might be too much for the series after the death of Dan Wheldon, who died from the injuries he suffered in a 15-car crash at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Sunday.
The open-wheel cars were going so fast, and the field included drivers who aren't as familiar with each other and the series, that some observers had predicted trouble. Wheldon himself said he was concerned about the speeds.
British F3 vice champion Kevin Magnussen will stay with Carlin for an attack on the Formula Renault 3.5 Series in 2012. The Dane spent the 2011 season with the British squad, claiming seven race wins in the British F3 International Series, and will stay with the newly crowned FR3.5 Team and Drivers’ champions next season.
Magnussen has marked himself out as a young driver to watch in the 2011 British F3 Series, following a dramatic season which saw him take six pole positions and seven race wins. His outright speed was emphasized by eight fastest laps over the year and he took the honor of being the driver to have lead the most laps of the season – 146 in total.
Electronic Fuel Injection Test at Talladega The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will test Electronic Fuel Injection at Talladega Superspeedway as research and development continues leading up to the full implementation of EFI in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for the 2012 season. Testing is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 20. Teams will be on track from 10 am - 4 pm/ct. Ten teams have entered for the test as of Wed, Oct 19th. Those include teams from Hendrick Motorsports, Joe Gibbs Racing, Penske Racing, Roush Fenway Racing (2), Richard Childress Racing (2), Michael Waltrip Racing, Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing. NASCAR
Costly wreck A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, I was looking through these photos of the Dan Wheldon crash. It looks like a war zone. Besides killing a driver, how much did this accident cost in terms of torn up equipment? Can the teams afford to race on the high banked ovals? Who takes the blame for 'pack' racing with open wheel cars on high-banked ovals? How desperate is that series to promote an "exciting" race finale to put those drivers at such peril? As far as I'm concerned, every person who has been a supporter of double-file restarts and pack racing in IndyCar has the blood of Dan Wheldon on their hands. It was just a matter of time before something like the tragedy in Vegas was going to happen. Mary Carter
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