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Bernard breaks silence  Former IZOD IndyCar Series CEO Randy Bernard broke his silence via social media on Saturday, expressing his support for the series he led from 2010.

"Let's not forget what this sport is really about: speed, world class drivers, and the best competition in all of racing," Bernard wrote on his Twitter feed.

"I want to sincerely thank all the #indycar fans for all your messages and support, for me, and the series," he said.

"I want to thank you for your last years of tireless work. #commitment," wrote Oriol Servia.

"My twitter handle will not change because I am a fan of #INDYCAR and will continue to support this great sport," Bernard said.

Vettel still thinks he can beat McLarens  Missing much of Practice Three didn’t scupper Sebastian Vettel as much as Red Bull fans feared during qualifying in Abu Dhabi on Saturday. Starting from P3 and with his title rival Fernando Alonso back down in seventh, Vettel is confident he will leave Yas Marina still leading the drivers’ standings…

Q: Sebastian, you stopped out on track at the end of qualifying. Why? Was it an engine problem or low fuel?
Sebastian Vettel: Neither. We will have to find out what happened. I was told over the team radio to come back to the pits as fast as I could, which doesn’t suggest the issue was low fuel. You wouldn’t say something like that if there was a risk of being on the limit. More ...
Latest F1 news in brief - Saturday  UPDATE Updates shown in red below.

  • Ecclestone and Lattuneddu
    Ecclestone to pay budget cap whistle-blowers
  • Vettel ahead because Red Bull so superior - Hamilton
  • With new form and contract, Massa 'relieved'
  • Contenders line up for Force India seat
  • Ferrari asked FIA question about Red Bull's car
  • Formula 1 teams told trick brake systems are illegal
  • Red Bull's ‘genius’ engineer Adrian Newey happy to shun fame
  • How the new F1 entry fee will work
  • Ferrari breaks curfew for second time New
  • Ferrari reverts to off-track weapons for Red Bull battle New More ...
Fire destroys garage of Sterling Marlin  A fire has destroyed three race cars and caused hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage at a garage in Middle Tennessee owned by retired NASCAR driver Sterling Marlin. Marlin told The Daily Herald in Columbia that the fire that started Friday morning destroyed his 2,500-square-foot garage in Maury County and three cars that belonged to his son-in-law, Michael House. He said he believed that there was a leak on a propane heater and welding sparks ignited the fire. A shop worker who was inside the garage when the fire started was treated at the scene for minor injuries. Maury County Fire Chief Mark Gandee said that crews had to work to prevent the fire from spreading to nearby buildings and fuel tanks. Associated Press/USA Today
Abu Dhabi GP: Hamilton tops Practice 3  
Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton led a McLaren 1-2 in the third and final practice session for Sunday's Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.  His teammate Jenson Button was second, but the star of the session was Sebastian Vettel.

Vettel sat in the garage while his mechanics worked on his brakes and it wasn't until the final five minutes of the session that he finally got on track.  Despite the handicap Vettel turned the third fastest time of the session less than 1/2 second back of Hamilton.

Mark Webber was 4th with Nico Hulkenberg rounding out the top5. More ...

Team USA
Mitchell Jr. and Nunez Ready for the Walter Hayes Trophy at Silverstone  Just a few days after making an impressive debut on British soil at Brands Hatch, Team USA Scholarship winners Jack Mitchell Jr. (far left) and Tristan Nunez will be back in action this weekend at Silverstone for the prestigious Walter Hayes Trophy Race Meeting.

The two American youngsters have been testing their cars on the Silverstone National circuit for the past two days. As at Brands Hatch, almost all of their running has been in wet or damp conditions. This afternoon’s final session provided their only opportunity to try out their Cliff Dempsey Racing-prepared Ray GR08 cars on a dry track, but once again circumstances conspired against them, allowing a solitary lap before several other cars embedded themselves in a gravel track and brought the day to a premature conclusion. More ...

Pocono hears from fans upset with IndyCar  The fan feedback at Pocono Raceway was euphoric a month ago, when IndyCar announced its return after a 23-year absence.

Now the fans are contacting the track to express their frustration over the departure of CEO Randy Bernard, who worked closely all year with Pocono in returning one of IndyCar's original tracks to the 2013 schedule. Bernard stepped down as CEO of IndyCar on Sunday night after an emergency meeting of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway board of directors. More ...
Chevrolet Clinches 2012 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series  Chevrolet has clinched the 2012 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Manufacturers’ Championship.  With Nelson Piquet, Jr.’s third place finish in the WinStar World Casino 350 at Texas Motor Speedway, Chevrolet captured the prestigious title for the eighth time since the 1995 inception of the Series.

“It is exciting to clinch the Manufacturers’ Championship in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series here at Texas Motor Speedway,” said Jim Campbell, U.S. Vice President Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “Each Chevrolet Silverado team contributed valuable points all season long to help us secure the championship. We appreciate the hard work of each Chevy team and driver who helped deliver this prestigious title for Chevrolet.” More ...

Abu Dhabi: Vettel tops Practice 2  
Sebastian Vettel
Sebastian Vettel led the second free practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix ahead of McLaren's Lewis Hamilton.

Hamilton has only ever started on the front row in Abu Dhabi and also won last year's race and started on pole for the inaugural event in 2

Jenson Button was third, while Mark Webber was fourth but stepped out of the car late in the session with car problems.

Vettel's chief championship rival Fernando Alonso was only seventh fastest, some 0.8s away from the ultimate pace indicating those new Ferrari upgrades did not work. More ...

Glock advises Caterham to keep Kovalainen  
Timo Glock
(GMM)  Timo Glock, Marussia's lead driver, has urged rival team Caterham to keep Heikki Kovalainen.

Caterham is expected to replace Vitaly Petrov's Russian millions next year with the well-backed Frenchman Charles Pic, who currently is Glock's teammate at Marussia.

But with Marussia currently placed tenth in the constructors' championship, Caterham stands to lose its projected $20 million in Concorde Agreement earnings, according to Germany's Auto Motor und Sport. More ...

track news
Kansas Speedway road course Track Lap  Eric Curran, driver of the No. 31 Whelen Engineering Corvette, pilots the new Kansas Speedway road course at GRAND-AM's first official test at the facility.

GRAND-AM Suspends Operation Of Performance Showcase  GRAND-AM Road Racing announced today that it has suspended operation of the Performance Showcase, a competition for sub-compact race cars commonly known as “B-Spec.”

During the 2012 debut season, the showcase featured six events. The possibility of the showcase returning will be addressed in the future. More ...

Alex Zanardi to test DTM title-winning BMW M3  Alex Zanardi will test BMW's DTM title-winning M3 at the Nurburgring on 8 November, as he considers a return to motorsport in the touring car series next season reports Autosport.com.

The double Champ Car champion turned Paralympic gold medalist, who lost both legs in a crash at Lausitz in 2001, was a race-winner for BMW's World Touring Car program before switching to handbike racing after the '09 season.

BMW motorsport chief Jens Marquardt is confident the DTM car can be effectively modified so that Zanardi can be the first amputee to try the series' machinery. More ...

Film maker Ron Howard entertains fans at The Austin Starting Grid Luncheon  
Ron Howard
Hollywood legend and two-time Academy Award-winning director Ron Howard delighted a capacity crowd in the Austin (Texas) Hilton Ballroom by previewing a five-minute clip of his much-anticipated Formula One film Rush, due in theaters on Sept. 20th, 2013. The script was written by Peter Morgan, who collaborated with Howard on A Beautiful Mind.

Howard shared the behind-the-scenes story of his new epic-action drama, Rush. The film, set for release in September 2013, tells the real-life story of Formula 1 drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda, whose clashes on the racetrack epitomized the contrast between two extraordinary characters, a distinction also reflected in their personal lives. More ...

Ferrari break curfew in Abu Dhabi  Ferrari broke curfew on Friday morning at the Yas Marina circuit in order to incorporate their latest batch of updates onto Fernando Alonso's car.

Under Formula One regulations, teams are not allowed within the confines of the circuit between the hours of 4am and 10am for this weekend's Abu Dhabi GP. All teams have four exemptions.

Ferrari, though, were already hard at work well before 10am on Friday morning.

Formula One technical delegate Jo Bauer reported that Ferrari mechanics had been "within the confines of the circuit during the six-hour period which commenced at 0400."

It is the first time this season that the Italian stable, who are locked in a battle for the World title, have broken curfew.

At Indy it's more luck than skill sometime  From a Racer.com Q&A with Dario Franchitti:

When you get three Indy 500 wins, do you quit kicking yourself over the ones that got away? You say, “Hey, I got three,” and think that's awesome in itself?

In the famous Green Room before the 500, I tend to sit off to one side and try to get my head in gear, and maybe Tony [Kanaan] will come and sit next to me or I'll be pretty much on my own. But before the 2011 race, A.J. Foyt came and sat next to me. Now, I look up to A.J., but just before the biggest race in the world, it's a bit… “Wow”…to have one of the four-time winners come and sit next to you. And he said to me, “You know, I've won a lot of these.” I say, “Umm, yeah, I know…”. He continues: “There were a lot more I could have won, and there were ones I won that I shouldn't have won. At Indy, when it's your day, it's your day.” And after that race, A.J.'s point really sunk home. More ...

Ferrari 'special' admits Hulkenberg  (GMM)  Nico Hulkenberg sounds open about a future at Ferrari.

Earlier, the German denied suggestions he is only switching from Force India to Ferrari-powered Sauber next year in order to pave a road to the fabled Maranello team.

"Ferrari is very special, I will not deny that," he is now quoted as saying by SID news agency.

"But first of all I look forward to my job at Sauber.  What comes next is anybody's guess and, anyway, it's very far away at the moment.

"It's going to depend on everything -- on how well next season goes," added Hulkenberg.

Hulkenberg, 25, did admit that he had some talks with Ferrari prior to signing with Sauber for 2013.

Abu Dhabi: McLarens 1-2 in opening practice  Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button led a McLaren 1-2 in the first free practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Friday morning.

Hamilton set a time 1m43.285s to beat teammate by 0.333s, with Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari's Fernando Alonso third and fourth.

Mark Webber rounded out the top-5 in the second Red Bull. More ...
President Mike Helton Talks About Current State of NASCAR on Wind Tunnel  
Mike Helton
NASCAR President Mike Helton joined Wind Tunnel host Dave Despain to talk about the states of the sport. Topics included concussions, quality of racing, rivalries and a changing fan base.

The following are excerpted quotes Mike Helton’s interview on the show.

Dave Despain: What’s the most important thing Bill France, Jr. taught you?

Mike Helton: Patience, and being pragmatic. I think he sorted through challenging situations by putting everything in perspective. That didn’t mean you had to like the person you were dealing with, didn’t mean you didn’t dislike the person, it was the issue and the bigger picture, and being patient with yourself, but more importantly, being patient with your surroundings, that he made the best possible decisions. More ...

Danica still working in 2013 Nationwide, Indy 500 plans  
Danica Patrick
Danica Patrick is still working on her 2013 racing schedule. She knows she will be running a full Sprint Cup schedule for Stewart-Haas Racing, but she's still working on racing in two other series: the Nationwide Series and the IndyCar Series. Patrick, who competed in IndyCar full time before moving to NASCAR full time this season, has driven all of her 55 career Nationwide races for Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s JR Motorsports. More ...
IndyCar needs a new boss – and a new plan  [Editor's Note: This Globe and Mail article was published yesterday prior to the Jeff Belskus Open Letter to fans was published (see our Home Page article).  In it Belskus said they have a plan for 2013, it was already done and he as CEO is following it.]

IndyCar’s post-Randy Bernard era has begun.

What the departure of the series chief executive will bring is anybody’s guess because it doesn’t seem like anyone in the head office has a plan.

Although many fans and media expected the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) board of directors, which oversees IndyCar, to make some sort of mission statement quickly after Bernard’s “resignation” was accepted, none was forthcoming. More ...

Latest F1 news in brief - Friday  
  • Mark Webber calls for stepped up drug testing
    Webber calls for better drug testing in F1
  • Technical trouble is Alonso's last hope - Lauda
  • Red Bull can clinch teams' title in Abu Dhabi
  • Raikkonen happy with one-year contracts
  • Di Resta says Hulkenberg's Sauber switch a surprise
  • 2013 Mercedes role still open - Schumacher
  • Hamilton not worried about Mercedes slump
  • Senna reveals sponsors committed beyond 2012
  • Massa 'understands' Ferrari's focus on Alonso
  • Grosjean sees 'no reason' for Lotus exit
  • Chilton's sponsors ready to fund 2013 debut
  • Domenicali: No point crying  More ...
Logano will have Todd Gordon as his Penske crew chief  Todd Gordon, in his first season as a Sprint Cup crew chief, will return to Penske Racing’s No. 22 car in 2013, the team confirmed Wednesday.

Gordon will be the crew chief for new Penske driver Joey Logano, who is joining the organization after this season.

“I’m Excited to announce that Todd Gordon will be the crew chief of the Shell/Pennzoil 22 car next year.”

racing news
Tanner Foust wins 2012 Global Rallycross Championship title  
Tanner Foust
Rockstar Energy Drink driver Tanner Foust successfully defended his Global Rallycross Championship title with a win at the season finale held Tuesday in Las Vegas.

"This was a whole team effort," said Foust after the race. "The Global Rallycross Championship was very competitive and it is a credit to the strength of the Ford Fiesta that we were able to bring home this championship and the manufacturer's title again in 2012." More ...

tv news
Wind Tunnel Sunday  Bob Varsha will co-host with Dave Despain in the Wind Tunnel studio this Sunday. SPEED’s Ray Dunlap will stop by to update us on this year’s battle for the Camping World Truck Series championship. And Robin Miller will join us from Indianapolis to share more thoughts on this week’s firing of IndyCar CEO, Randy Bernard.

In addition, we’ll talk to NHRA Funny Car title contender, Ron Capps. Capps heads to next week’s season finale in Pomona just 4 points behind his teammate, Jack Beckman, in the standings. This past week, the two met in the finals at Las Vegas with Capps taking the win. Both are seeking their first ever Funny Car championship. Capps has finished 2nd in the standings three times in his career. More ...

track news
Plans for Circuit of Wales Racetrack unveiled  
Planned Circuit of Wales
Plans were unveiled Wednesday "for a $404M Circuit of Wales near Ebbw Vale," according to Tom Cary of the London TELEGRAPH. FCC Construccion, the Spanish firm behind the tracks in Jerez and Valencia, Spain and local company Alun Griffiths Ltd. "have been appointed to deliver a mountaintop 3.5-mile circuit," built to motorsports governing body FIA and motorcycle governing body FIM standards, near the Brecon Beacons National Park in South Wales.

While F1 "has not yet been mentioned," the Heads of the Valleys Development Company released a statement that said the Circuit of Wales will be designed to host "international events such as MotoGP, World Superbikes, World Motocross, IndyCar and World Touring Car." More ...
Circuit Of The Americas Ready For Inaugural F1 Race, But Attendance Concerns Linger  The Circuit of the Americas is a "first-rate facility, more modern and F1-worthy than anything presented previously in the States, but questions remain as to whether it will draw a consistent and enthusiastic audience," according to Jeff Olson of USA TODAY. COTA President Steve Sexton said, "Not only is this the first purpose-built facility for F1 dating to Watkins Glen, but we always intended to make this world class. So far, we've had fantastic reviews from drivers and fans." COTA "can seat 100,000 spectators and has sold that many tickets (at an average of $400 each for the weekend)."

There are "videoscreens throughout the circuit." Sexton on Monday said, "We've got our work cut out for us, but construction is not one of the issues." F1 has "tried and failed in America in multiple ways -- street races, permanent road courses and most recently at Indianapolis Motor Speedway from 2000 to 2007." The series "continues to pursue the U.S. market in part because many of its partners -- namely Ferrari, Mercedes and Pirelli -- have large market shares." USA TODAY
SPEED enhances Austin race coverage  SPEED, the American television home for Formula One racing since 1996, plans an expanded programming slate from the Grand Prix of the United States, the penultimate event on the 2012 FIA Formula One World Championship circuit, highlighted by live race coverage Sunday, Nov. 18 at 1:30 p.m. ET from Austin, Texas.

Hosted by Bob Varsha, with analysis from David Hobbs and Steve Matchett, and pit reporting from Will Buxton, SPEED’s live coverage of the inaugural event from the newly built Circuit of the Americas begins Friday, Nov. 16 with the opening practice session on the 20-turn, 3.427-mile track at 11 a.m. ET. More ...

TV News
SPEED To Premiere Hendrick Motorsports Special  NASCAR team owner Rick Hendrick, his current drivers and some of his past drivers gather to reflect on Hendrick Motorsports’ road to a milestone 200 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories in an exclusive one-hour special premiering Nov. 11 at 8 p.m. ET on SPEED.

Hendrick moderates the group’s discussion in Beyond 200: The Hendrick Motorsports Story, produced by Emmy Award-winning NASCAR Productions. The show captures behind-the-scenes anecdotes and emotional revelations along the path to greatness for this storied organization. The past meets the present as current Hendrick Motorsports drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Kasey Kahne join past drivers Geoff Bodine, Terry Labonte, Ken Schrader and Darrell Waltrip to share tales in the one-hour special. More ...

Perez denies losing focus after McLaren news  (GMM)  Sergio Perez on Thursday rejected suggestions his form has taken a nosedive because he has already turned his attention to 2013.

From the cockpit of his Sauber last year and in 2012, the 22-year-old Mexican convinced F1 grandee McLaren that he is good enough to replace Lewis Hamilton next season.

But since the news was announced, Perez's form has apparently collapsed: despite his earlier podiums, in Suzuka he crashed, in Korea he finished out of the points and last weekend in India he retired after a run-in with a Toro Rosso -- a move said to have particularly displeased his boss Monisha Kaltenborn. More ...

Hulkenberg denies Sauber move linked with Ferrari  
Nico Hulkenberg
(GMM)  Nico Hulkenberg on Thursday denied he agreed to switch to Sauber next year only to bolster his chances of driving for Ferrari one day.

Former F1 driver turned British Sky television pundit Johnny Herbert expressed surprise at the German's decision to move from Force India, describing as a "sideways" step.

"They're battling for similar placings during the race weekends.  So it's not a big step forward," he said.

Hulkenberg, however, did confirm that he had some talks with Ferrari recently about possibly replacing Felipe Massa next year. More ...

Latest F1 news in brief - Thursday  UPDATE Updates shown in red below.

Ricciardo (above) and Vergne keep Toro Rosso seats next year
  • Toro Rosso keeps same drivers for 2013
  • F1 float on hold until 2014
  • Hamilton says Dennis supports Mercedes switch
  • Alguersuari offers 'notebook of secrets' to 2013 team
  • Ecclestone to meet Prost over 2013 French GP
  • Ferrari focused on improving DRS for qualifying
  • Kovalainen still waiting for Caterham's 'pay driver' decision
  • Grosjean 'deserves' Lotus seat - Boullier
  • Pirelli 'needs wider compound choice'
  • Lotus works on improvements for exhausts New
  • Two DRS zones confirmed for Yas Marina  New More ...
NASCAR Plaza office building sold  Parkway Properties has agreed to buy the 20-story NASCAR Plaza office building for approximately $100 million. The Charlotte Business Journal reported earlier this month that the Orlando, Fla.-based real estate investment trust had made an unsolicited offer to buy the 390,000-square-foot uptown building as well as the 525 North Tryon building. Parkway acquired the Hearst Tower from Bank of America earlier this year for $250 million. The NASCAR Plaza building, owned by Trinity Capital Advisors and Rubenstein Partners, is 88 percent leased, with an average in-place rent of $25.61 per square foot. NASCAR has a lease for 139,000 square feet that runs through May 2021, and Chiquita Brands International Inc. signed a lease for about 138,000 square feet this year after deciding to relocate its headquarters from Cincinnati. Parkway says NASCAR Plaza is expected to generate a 2013 estimated cash net operating income yield of approximately 7 percent. The company expects to close on the purchase by the end of the year. Charlotte Business Journal
Nissan and Kelly Racing unveil Altima V8 Supercar  
Jack Daniel's Racing’s black and white livery will feature on the Nissan Altima V8 Supercars of Todd and Rick Kelly next year, which were launched at a spectacular event in Melbourne today.

Nissan Australia Managing Director and CEO William F Peffer Jr joined team co-owners and Bathurst-winning drivers Todd and Rick Kelly to unveil the spectacular Altima V8 Supercar.

“This is a proud day for Nissan and a significant occasion for the sport of V8 Supercars,” said Nissan Australia Managing Director and CEO William F Peffer Jr. More ...

Bentley to return to race track  British car brand Bentley "will return to the racetrack with a GT car in '14 as Volkswagen, which owns the brand, restructures its GT involvement." Volkswagen "has already three of its brands competing in the FIA GT3 series," Porsche, Lamborghini and Audi. In '14 a fourth one will follow as Volkswagen "prepares the return of Bentley to the racetrack."

Research & Development Head Wolfgang Durheimer, who is charge of Volkswagen’s motorsport activities, said, "We will present ourselves in GT racing with Bentley starting in 2014." Bentley's last motorsport involvement was in '03 when it won the 24 Hours of  Le Mans race. Durheimer added, "The brand has celebrated numerous victories in motorsports, not only the overall victory in Le Mans in '03."  Motorsport-Total.com
ESPN’s Hannah Storm Goes In-Depth with Four of NASCAR’s Best  With the 2012 NASCAR season nearing the finish line, four of the sport’s biggest stars will open their lives to fans in a one-hour conversation special with ESPN SportsCenter anchor Hannah Storm on Tuesday, Nov. 6, at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN.

SportsCenter Special: NASCAR Face-to-Face with Hannah Storm, will feature NASCAR Sprint Cup drivers Jimmie Johnson, Brad Keselowski, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Tony Stewart. Viewers will get an up-close look at their lives away from the track through a blend of conversation and access as they near the end of the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, with Johnson and Keselowski locked in a battle for the 2012 series championship. More ...

track news
SMI Reports Revenue Down In Q3  Speedway Motorsports Inc. today reported a Q3 profit of $11M, but said that the economy continues to affect the consumer and corporate spending that drive the company's business. Total revenues for Q3 were $142.3M, down from $177M in Q3 '11. The decrease was primarily a result of the fact that Kentucky Speedway's Sprint Cup race was moved from the third quarter in '11 to the second quarter this year. SMI COO Marcus Smith said, "Certain attendance and other related revenue trends appear to be stabilizing, while some markets are taking longer to recover than initially anticipated."
racing news
John Fitch dead at 95  John Finch, a World War II fighter pilot who became an American giant in sports car racing, has died at 95.

Born in Indianapolis in 1917, John Cooper Fitch, would become the Sports Car Club of America's first national champion. He died early Wednesday at his home in Lime Rock, Conn.

In U.S. sports car racing's formative years after the war, Fitch impressed many with his skills behind the wheel. Among them was Briggs Cunningham, the wealthy entrepreneur and sportsman who built and raced his own cars and yachts. More ...

Cheerios Returning As Co-Primary Sponsor Of RCR's No. 31 Chevy  Richard Childress Racing today announced that General Mills' Cheerios brand will return as the primary sponsor of the No. 31 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Chevy driven by Jeff Burton for six races in '13, as well as an associate sponsor for the balance of that season. General Mills began its partnership with RCR in '08 by sponsoring the No. 33 Cup entry. The brand moved its sponsorship to the No. 31 car as a co-primary sponsor for the '12 Sprint Cup Series season. RCR PR
Toro Rosso confirms same drivers for 2013  Scuderia Toro Rosso is pleased to confirm that it will continue with its current driver line-up of Daniel Ricciardo and Jean-Eric Vergne for the 2013 Formula 1 season. It will be the second year with the team for both of them.

Franz Tost: “Both drivers have done a good job this season. Daniel joined us with a few Grands Prix under his belt and so his feedback and experience was particularly useful while Jean-Eric got up to speed, often having to deal with tracks he had never seen before. Since the summer break, both drivers have scored more points and everyone in the team has been impressed with their maturity in terms of working with the engineers and their racecraft on track. We will be doing our best in the next few months, to produce a 2013 car which will allow them to demonstrate their talent.” More ...
Rossi tops Day 2 of GP2 testing in Barcelona  
American Alexander Rossi tops GP2 test
Day two of the first post-season test session opened this morning at Circuit de Catalunya on a very wet track with rain pouring down incessantly. It took a while before the first drivers braved the tricky conditions in order to do their installation laps. Kevin Ceccon at Ocean was the first one to feed on to the track, but it was Sergio Canamasas at Lotus GP who set a first lap time albeit a pretty slow one compared to yesterday’s best time.

The minutes ticked away and the rain kept on coming down. Only a handful of drivers set a lap time. Jolyon Palmer at iSport broke under the 2min barrier ahead of Eddie Cheever Jr (Coloni) and Canamasas. Halfway through the session, Nigel Melker at Racing Engineering went top ahead of teammate Facundo Regalia, but the Argentinean improved and went quickest before the session was briefly halted after Rene Binder (Lazarus) spun and stopped at Turn 5.

The skies eventually took pity on the GP2 field and the rain stopped for the final hour of the session. Alexander Rossi at Caterham took control of the timesheet ahead of Daniel Juncadella at Rapax and returnee Pal Varhaug at iSport. On a drying track, the lap times slowly improved, but the session was red flagged twice as rookie Sergei Sirotkin (DAMS) lost control of his car at Turn 4 and as Rene Binder also spun and stopped at Turn 6. At the checkered flag, Regalia was leading Canamasas, Rossi, Melker, Daniel De Jong, Adrian Quaife-Hobbs, Varhaug, Arthur Pic, Juncadella and Stefano Coletti.

After a one hour lunch break, the cars were back in action on a less damp track. Coletti, De Jong and Cheever Jr were the first ones out. Lap times dropped as the track dried out and Canamasas set the early pace but was soon bettered by iSport duo, Varhaug ahead of Palmer. The session was interrupted after the Norwegian and Pic both went wide and stopped in the gravel bed.

At the restart, the sun came out and hopes to use the slick tires arose. Melker went quickest ahead of both Trident cars, but Coletti improved and claimed the top spot just before another red flag halted the proceedings after Rene Binder spun and stopped at Turn 7. The track went live again and Rossi dipped under 1m32s and went top ahead of rookie Daniel Abt.

Another two red flags interrupted the session: Juncadella first went wide at turn 4. Soon after the restart, it was Lucas Foresti who lost control of his Caterham car also at turn 4. With 30 minutes left on the clock, the proceedings got going again and most drivers hoped to get the most out of their new sets of tires. Quaife-Hobbs found some extra pace amid traffic to slip into P2. A final red flag concluded the day courtesy of Varhaug who crashed into the barrier at turn 4.

Rossi finished on top ahead of Quaife-Hobbs, Melker, Trummer, Abt, Coletti, Rio Haryanto, Canamasas, Juncadella and Kevin Giovesi. The GP2 paddock will gather in three weeks time in Jerez for the second and final post-season test session of 2012.

Morning results

Pos Driver Team Lap time Laps
1. Facundo Regalia Racing Engineering 1:51.799 21
2. Sergio Canamasas Lotus GP 1:52.023 21
3. Alexander Rossi Caterham Racing 1:52.118 13
4. Nigel Melker Racing Engineering 1:52.179 17
5. Daniel De Jong Scuderia Coloni 1:52.469 13
6. Adrian Quaife Hobbs Barwa Addax Team 1:52.529 12
7. Pal Varhaug iSport International 1:52.536 17
8. Arthur Pic DAMS 1:52.566 18
9. Daniel Juncadella Rapax 1:52.648 16
10. Stefano Coletti Rapax 1:52.934 8
11. Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:53.108 12
12. Jolyon Palmer iSport International 1:53.196 25
13. Rio Haryanto Carlin 1:53.653 8
14. Felipe Nasr Carlin 1:53.776 9
15. Lucas Foresti Caterham Racing 1:53.844 13
16. Sergey Sirotkin DAMS 1:53.890 16
17. Kevin Giovesi Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:53.892 13
18. Rene Binder Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:54.042 12
19. Stephane Richelmi Trident Racing 1:54.096 16
20. Simon Trummer Arden International 1:54.546 12
21. Eddie Cheever Jr Scuderia Coloni 1:54.604 23
22. Julian Leal Trident Racing 1:54.909 9
23. Mitch Evans Arden International 1:56.843 16
24. Daniel Abt Lotus GP 2:00.783 8
25. Luca Filippi Scuderia Coloni -- -
26. Kevin Ceccon Ocean Racing Technology -- -
27. Ramon Pineiro Ocean Racing Technology -- -

Afternoon Results

Pos Driver Team Lap time Laps
1. Alexander Rossi Caterham Racing 1:31.173 26
2. Adrian Quaife-Hobbs Barwa Addax Team 1:31.552 19
3. Nigel Melker Racing Engineering 1:31.583 28
4. Simon Trummer Arden International 1:31.667 43
5. Daniel Abt Lotus GP 1:31.763 30
6. Stefano Coletti Rapax 1:31.773 28
7. Rio Haryanto Carlin 1:31.822 29
8. Sergio Canamasas Lotus GP 1:31.876 35
9. Daniel Juncadella Rapax 1:31.883 24
10. Kevin Giovesi Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:31.896 30
11. Daniel De Jong Scuderia Coloni 1:32.027 31
12. Mitch Evans Arden International 1:32.035 28
13. Jolyon Palmer iSport International 1:32.036 38
14. Pal Varhaug iSport International 1:32.039 25
15. Jake Rosenzweig Barwa Addax Team 1:32.040 32
16. Stephane Richelmi Trident Racing 1:32.236 42
17. Felipe Nasr Carlin 1:32.243 38
18. Facundo Regalia Racing Engineering 1:32.337 26
19. Arthur Pic DAMS 1:32.438 38
20. Rene Binder Venezuela GP Lazarus 1:32.492 29
21. Julian Leal Trident Racing 1:32.770 35
22. Eddie Cheever Scuderia Coloni 1:32.781 30
23. Sergey Sirotkin DAMS 1:32.907 28
24. Lucas Foresti Caterham Racing 1:33.840 34
25. Luca Filippi Scuderia Coloni -- -
26. Kevin Ceccon Ocean Racing Technology -- -
27. Ramon Pineiro Ocean Racing Technology -- -
News imageJorge Lorenzo to make Race Of Champions debut  

  • Newly-crowned MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo will compete at the 2012 Race Of Champions in Bangkok, Thailand
  • After sealing his second MotoGP title last weekend at Australia’s Phillip Island circuit, Lorenzo joins a star-studded line-up for ROC 2012
  • Lorenzo will race a field including F1 world champions Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel, MotoGP legend Mick Doohan plus many more
  • The Spanish rider will also carry out a demonstration run at ROC Bangkok on a Yamaha bike
      More ...
    • 10/31/12
      IndyCar's firing of Randy Bernard can only lead to more chaos  
      Long Beach
      Today's quiz: What will be coming to Shoreline Drive next April 19-21?

      1. The 39th Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, featuring IndyCar?

      2. F1 racing?

      3. Clint Eastwood having a conversation with an empty chassis?

      4. Chaos?

      All we can guarantee is the latter.  More ...

      Texas NASCAR Goodyear Tire Notes  Teams in both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series will run the same Goodyear tire codes at Texas this weekend . . . teams in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will run a similar tire set-up this weekend, using the same left-side tire code (D-4392) but a different right-side code . . . Sprint Cup and Nationwide teams will run the same combination of left- and right-side tires that they ran at Texas earlier this season and during both race weekends at the track last season . . . this is also the same tire set-up that teams in these two series have run at both Chicagoland and Homestead in 2011 and 2012 . . . as on all NASCAR ovals greater than one mile in length, teams are required run inner liners in all four tire positions at Texas . . . air pressure in those inner liners should be 12-25 psi greater than that of the outer tire . . . Goodyear held a tire test with the 2013 Sprint Cup cars at Texas on October 9-10 . . . teams and drivers participating in that test were No. 16 Roush Fenway Ford with Greg Biffle, No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota with Kyle Busch, No. 27 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet with Paul Menard and No. 42 Earnhardt Ganassi Racing Chevrolet with Juan Pablo Montoya. Goodyear PR
      Johnsons' book gets second printing  
      On The Road
      Chandra and Jimmie Johnson announced a second edition of "On The Road," the 208-page, hardcover book that chronicles Johnson's 2011 unsuccessful quest for an historic sixth consecutive NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship. In addition, a partnership with online retailer Amazon has been formed and the book is now available for purchase on Amazon.com. In less than three months, more than 4,200 books have been sold through various outlets, including JimmieJohnson.com and the #48 Lowe's trackside merchandise hauler - a testament to the passion and loyalty of NASCAR fans that played a significant role in the book's sellout status. The second edition will be sold at those outlets again in addition to mass distribution through the new relationship with Amazon.com. True Speed Communication
      Green Earth Technologies joins NASCAR as Official Green Partner  In a joint announcement, Florida-based Green Earth Technologies (GET) joined the stable of Official NASCAR Green Partners. GET's G-CLEAN pressure washers and environment-safe cleaning products and degreasers for concrete, home siding and outdoor mold and mildew stain removal, will offer NASCAR fans a green alternative to use on their homes. GET's presence in the sport will expand across NASCAR Home Tracks, including participation in the NASCAR Home Tracks Contingency program. GET's G-CLEAN logo will be featured on-track with a decal on each entry in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour, NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour and NASCAR K&N Pro Series. Additionally, Green Earth Technologies signage will be prominently featured at Home Track racetracks across the country. NASCAR
      Diapers on Montoya's car at Texas  
      Huggies will make their first appearance on the #42 Chevy this weekend as they are displayed as the primary colors through their partnership with Target. Huggies Snug & Dry Diapers offer long-lasting protection you can count on, so you can focus on all your little one's daily adventures. Plus, they also come with the trusted leakage protection of the Leak Lock System-which is now even more absorbent. Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing
      Latest F1 news in brief - Wednesday  UPDATE Updates shown in red below.

      Nico Hulkenberg to Sauber
      • Senna doubts 2012 title to go down to the wire
      • Hembery doubts 'tire war' to return to F1
      • Raikkonen not ruling out return to Ferrari, McLaren
      • Sutil's manager says Force India talks 'not concrete'
      • Schu would have won races for Sauber - Alonso
      • Sauber F1 Team signs on Nico Hulkenberg for 2013 New
      • Theys Gives Fans Rides in an Actual F1 Race Car New More ...
      Filippi sets the pace Tuesday in Barcelona  
      Luca Filippi
      The thirteen GP2 Series teams are back on track at Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona this week for a two-day post-season test session. Many new faces joined the field as some familiar names switched to different teams.

      The morning session opened in cloudy and cold conditions. The first hour was rather quiet and mainly used for installation laps as newcomers got to grips with their new machines and teams waited for the temperatures to rise. It was rookie Kevin Giovesi at Venezuela GP Lazarus who first set a lap time in the opening thirty minutes of the session, but he was soon bettered by Daniel De Jong at Scuderia Coloni. More ...
      IndyCar drivers test at Barber  UPDATE
      Simona gets her first test with KV Racing
      Scott Morris/AR1.com
      AR1's Scott Morris filed this additional report from testing at Barber Monday - We were casually timing various cars with a stopwatch and were seeing laps in the low 1:11 and high 1:10's, but obviously that is only catching a few laps at a time among three drivers at a time, and not knowing what they were working on. But we did notice that Simona had the fastest time of the ones we happened to catch, clocking a 1:10.65, which is on a tick off of Helio Castroneves qualifying time for the 2012 race. However, the cold temperatures make a bit more horsepower on a turbocharged engine. But its obvious she was quick right off the bat.

      Dario made some comments on camera to the Birmingham News when asked how he felt about Randy Bernard. He said that his resignation - if you want to call it that - is unfortunate. But that the drivers or anyone on the track side just wants to know what the plan is...which is not an exact quote because it was really windy and I got nothing but wind noise on my recorder. More ...
      Boullier Says Proposed Budget Cap Needs Further Discussion  F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone's "attempts to cut costs by imposing a potential £155M ($250M) budget cap on each team" has been called "unrealistic" by McLaren F1 Team Principal Martin Whitmarsh. Ecclestone revealed during last weekend’s Indian Grand Prix that "he had proposed such a figure, which would include driver salaries and all other costs, to the 12 teams."

      Red Bull and its sister team, Toro Rosso, "have previously opposed the resource restriction agreement, prompting Ecclestone’s bid to force through a resolution under which every team could comfortably operate."

      Lotus F1 Team Principal Eric Boullier "can see the benefits of Ecclestone’s idea but believes further discussion is required." He said, "Bernie is very serious. The budget cap is one of the best ways to have control over useless expenditure and to end the competitive war." When asked whether he though the budget cap or the RRA was a better idea, Boullier replied: "I don't know yet. The idea of a budget cap from Bernie is quite new, and we just need to look at it a bit more"  London Times
      NASCAR Martinsville TV Rating  ESPN’s live telecast of the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway on Sunday, Oct. 28, earned a 2.8 household coverage rating (2.4 U.S. rating), averaging 3,617,199 viewers, according to the Nielsen Company. That is a 23% drop from last year’s telecast, which earned a 3.6 household coverage rating, while the rating was the same as the 2010 race telecast.

      Greensboro, N.C., led the nation with a 7.6 rating, followed by Birmingham (6.3), Richmond and Charlotte (5.9) and Norfolk (5.6).

      De Silvestro Joins KV Racing Technology  KV Racing Technology announced today that they have signed Swiss IndyCar driver Simona De Silvestro for the 2013 IZOD IndyCar season. De Silvestro joins current driver Tony Kanaan, making the team a two-car entry. This will be the first time De Silvestro has had the opportunity of running with a teammate since moving up to the IndyCar series in 2010. She brings with her the Nuclear Clean Air Energy campaign sponsorship.

      “I’m really excited to be joining KV Racing Technology,” De Silvestro said, “I think it’s going to be great having Tony as a teammate. It’s never easy to make a change like this, but I’m confident that it’s the right move for me going forward. I do want to thank Keith and HVM Racing for helping me gain a ton of experience these last three years. Even though we struggled last year with our engine, I learned a lot. Now it’s time to move on and look forward to next season. I’m proud of the fact that I’m the spokesperson for the Nuclear Clean Air Energy campaign and very happy that Entergy, AREVA, and all my sponsors will continue to support my racing efforts”.

      The Nuclear Clean Air Energy Sponsorship is comprised of multiple members of the nuclear industry most notable being Entergy Nuclear and AREVA.
      track news
      Rio Jacarepagua race track closes  The Jacarepagua track has hosted its last auto racing event before the site is redeveloped to make room for the 2016 Olympic Park.

      The track, previously home to Formula One, CART and MotoGP, is where Ayrton Senna made his F1 debut in 1984 and is officially known as the Nelson Piquet International Raceway.

      Jacarepagua hosted F1 in 1978 and from 1981-1989. CART raced there in on an oval from 1996-2000, and MotoGP used the track from 1995-2004.

      The track was shortened after part of the venue was used for the 2007 Pan Am Games.

      Local authorities say a new track will be built in the city.

      Petty Hires Drew Blickensderfer as Crew Chief for Ambrose, No. 9 Team  Richard Petty Motorsports announced today Drew Blickensderfer has been assigned as the crew chief of the No. 9 team and driver Marcos Ambrose.

      The Mount Zion, Ill., native comes to Richard Petty Motorsports most recently from Richard Childress Racing where he was the crew chief for Jeff Burton. Prior to his time there, Blickensderfer spent the majority of his career with teams associated with Ford Racing and Roush-Fenway Racing. He is a former Daytona 500 champion and has multiple Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series wins with drivers Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth. More ...

      Jack Roush looks back on 3,000th Cup start  
      Jack Roush
      NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races at Kansas Speedway last weekend. This marks the third time in 2012 Ford has captured both events. The first came at Texas when Stenhouse won the Nationwide event and Greg Biffle took the Sprint Cup race. Watkins Glen International proved fertile ground in August when Carl Edwards took the checkered flag in Nationwide and Marcos Ambrose won in Sprint Cup.

      ·Ford has six NASCAR Sprint Cup Series victories this season, which is one more than 2011. Kenseth leads the way with three while Biffle has two and Ambrose one.

      ·Kenseth’s win at Kansas was the 24th of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series career and moved him into sole possession of eighth-place on the all-time Ford win list. He had been tied for that spot with Rusty Wallace. More ...

      Latest F1 news in brief - Tuesday  
      • Webber - beaten again by Vettel, will he cooperate?
        Red Bull still counting on Webber's team spirit
      • Lauda insists Brawn's top job not endangered
      • Sandstorm in Abu Dhabi
      • Barrichello refusing to rule out F1 return
      • Force India needs fast driver, not pay-driver - Szafnauer
      • Luca di Montezemolo - we must give 120% now More ...
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