Hot News
for your iPhone
for your iPad
Go to our forums to discuss this news
DATE News (chronologically)
Kalkhoven: We've still got the hammer Kalkhoven: We've still got the hammerRecall that at last year's Champ Car banquet Kevin Kalkhoven held up a hammer and declared, "Tony we've got the hammer, " referring to the hammer Tony George brought to work everyday in an attempt to nail Champ Car's coffin shut. At Sunday night's Champ Car Awards banquet this year Kevin Kalkhoven opened his talk by again pulling out the hammer and declaring, "We've still got the hammer," which was met with a great uproar.
Hayanari Shimoda declared OK Hayanari Shimoda declared OKHayanari Shimoda has been declared fit this morning following his high-speed accident in the A1 Grand Prix of Nations race held yesterday at the Eastern Creek Raceway. He has spent the night in the High Dependency Unit of Westmead hospital under the care of the trauma team who discharged him today after confirming all the tests they ran on him were fine.
Mexico City attendance Mexico City attendanceAttendance for this weekend's Champ Car race in Mexico city was 271,569, down significantly from over 350,000 last year. The average per event this year was slightly over 150,000, a per event record average.
Seen in Mexico VII Seen in Mexico VIISeen in Mexico City - Grand Prix Association of Long Beach CEO Jim Michaelian and former Champ Car driver Roberto Moreno.  Jim tells us that things are looking extremely positive for next year's LB race.  The Grand-Am cars will use the former Trans-Am Paddock. 
Champ Car Morning Warm Up Champ Car Morning Warm UpThis morning's half-hour Champ Car Warm Up just finished.  After the first lap, many cars came back to the pits for setup adjustments.  Andrew Ranger, starting 17th, slid into his pit wall slightly.  In doing so, he hit one of his pit crew members who fell over the right front wheel.  The crew member appears to be OK, but was limping slightly.  At the end of the warm up, the three fastest were da Matta, with a best lap time of 1:29.757, Bourdais at 1:29.861, and Dominguez at 1:30.037.  Paul J.
Melandri wins MotoGP race Melandri wins MotoGP raceMarco Melandri clinched his second consecutive MotoGP win in today’s Gran Premio betandwin.com de la Comunitat Valencia, putting on an impressive performance to fend off the challenge of Nicky Hayden. Melandri made a good start from second of the grid to snatch the holeshot ahead of Hayden, while poleman Sete Gibernau slipped back to third. The Spaniard ended his campaign on another blow, his engine breaking out on lap three. Qualified in a low 15th, World Champion Valentino Rossi made a strong charge, gaining seven places on the first lap and challenging Carlos Checa for third five laps later. By mid-race, the Yamaha rider was chasing Melandri and Hayden after passing Checa, but only managed to close the gap to little less than three seconds. At the front, Melandri rode a flawless race despite Hayden pushing hard on his tail, but never close enough to have a clear shot at the lead. With this second consecutive win, Melandri consolidated his second position in the Championship, finishing best runner-up behind Valentino Rossi. Ducati Marlboro’s Carlos Checa took fourth, crossing the line more than 15 seconds after Rossi, followed by Honda veterans Alex Barros and Max Biaggi.
Seen in Mexico City - VI Seen in Mexico City - VIThe most powerful woman in Ford, Anne Stevens, Ford executive vice president and chief operating officer for its Americas division. Stevens, 56, previously served as group vice president for Canada, Mexico and South America, and is behind Ford's Champ Car involvement, is in the Mexico City paddock.
Seen in Mexico City - V Seen in Mexico City - VSpotted Ryan Hunter-Reay having breakfast with Forsythe Racing boss Gerald Forsythe this morning in Mexico City. See the rumors page for what's going on.
Former IRL team owner arrested for drunk driving Former IRL team owner arrested for drunk drivingAccording to this article, former Panther Racing co-owner Jim Harbaugh was arrested and booked on suspicion of drunken driving early Sunday morning after being stopped for running a stop sign in Encinitas, according to the San Diego County Sheriff's Department.  He was released later that morning after 7½ hours at the Vista Detention Facility. He is to appear in court on the matter in December.
"I'm more embarrassed for the people around me than I am for myself," Harbaugh said yesterday. "I've made a lifetime of good social decisions, and this was a bad one. Our players know they have consequences for decisions they make. That applies to me, too. I'll take responsibility for this action." 
Sunday F1 update Sunday F1 updateMidland has handed FIA GT driver Thomas Biagi the chance to shine in an F1 car.

The hopeful Italian will test the Jordan at Jerez next month.

''I'm glad that we are able to offer him his first F1 test so that he can show his potential,'' said team principal Colin Kolles. Midland's first race seat for 2006 will be occupied by Dutchman Christijan Albers.

Grappling to maintain his status in formula one after Nico Rosberg landed Williams' second seat, Antonio Pizzonia refuted speculation that his future lies in American Champ Cars.

At Juan Pablo Montoya's charity kart race in Colombia, the Brazilian said he is 'too young' to abandon Europe for the 'States.

''We're analyzing what is best for me,' 'Jungle Boy' said, ''... staying at Williams or going to another team as third driver.''

Pizzonia, 25, clearly disagrees with his former Jaguar and Williams teammate Mark Webber that Rosberg - the son of Sir Frank's 1982 champion - is the best bet for the Grove team.

''Jenson was very young and did a fantastic job,'' Australia's Webber, 28, said, ''as was Kimi. Nico is of a similar level I suppose, so he'll be strong.''

Elsewhere, Polish driver Robert Kubica popped over to Enstone (UK) to have a molded Renault seat fitted for his first F1 test in December.

Next to the 'World Series by Renault' champion at Barcelona will be Giorgio Mondini, winner of the Eurocup Renault V6 category.

At Eastern Creek (Sydney) for the 'A1 grand prix' race on Sunday, Hayanari Shimoda had an enormous shunt that saw his single seater car crack like an egg into two distinct pieces.

Team Japan's driver was taken by ambulance to the medical centre where, amazingly, it was confirmed he sustained no more than concussion and a big headache.

2005 Indy 500 winner Dan Wheldon, meanwhile, emerged quicker than event host and 1999 Indy 500 winner Juan Pablo Montoya for qualifying at the charity kart race on the streets of Colombia.

Another Indy winner, Helio Castroneves, came next, ahead of F1 reps Christian Klien, former world kart champion Vitantonio Luizzi, Antonio Pizzonia and Christijan Albers.

Pedro de la Rosa was ninth quickest.

Karting News
Wheldon wins pole for go-kart race Wheldon wins pole for go-kart raceIRL champion Dan Wheldon claimed pole position for the today's Race of Stars charity go-kart race on the streets of Cartagena, Colombia.
 1. Dan Wheldon 1:15.618
 2. Juan Pablo Montoya 1:15.664 + 0.046
 3. Helio Castroneves 1:16.351 + 0.733
 4. Christian Klien 1:16.380 + 0.762
 5. Vitantonio Liuzzi 1:16.402 + 0.784
 6. Antonio Pizzonia 1:16.736 + 1.118
 7. Christijan Albers 1:16.915 + 1.297
 8. Roger Yasukawa 1:17.161 + 1.543
 9. Pedro de la Rosa 1:17.228 + 1.610
10. Oliver Ramzheimer 1:21.871 + 6.253
A1 Grand Prix
Japanese driver remains hospitalized Japanese driver remains hospitalizedA1 Team Japan driver Hayanari Shimoda will remain in hospital overnight following his 165mph shunt during the A1GP feature race in Australia.  Team manager Malcolm Swetnam said: "Hayanari is fine. He's a little concussed, but the car did an exceptional job at protecting him.

"The safety cell on the A1 racing car stood up to the impact brilliantly. He was a little woozy in the car when the safety crew reached him, but they got to him very quickly and he was taken to the medical centre.

"All his vital signs are good, and the doctors are transferring him to a local hospital for a CT scan, and they will probably keep him in overnight because it was a big impact and they'll want to keep an eye on him."

A1 Grand Prix
Team France sweeps both races in Australia Team France sweeps both races in Australia
A1 Grand Prix
Eastern Creek attendance figures Eastern Creek attendance figures51,000 race fans across three days packed Sydney’s Eastern Creek International Raceway for the first ever A1 Grand Prix of Nations held in the city and every single one of them were treated to a world-class event. [Editor's Note: From the overhead photo on race day shown to right, it's clear the race day crowd was about 10,000, tops. Another severely over inflated A1GP attendance figure. If this series wants to be taken seriously it had better stop insulting the intelligence of the media with over inflated attendance figures. Photo courtesy of A1GP]

Chairman of the event, 1980 World Formula One Champion, Alan Jones was “delighted with the turnout. We proved that by holding the event in Sydney we can attract a good crowd to Eastern Creek. Not only were there Australian flags, but flags from all nations, which is exactly what we expected from Sydney being such a multi-cultural city.”

Jones added he was pleasantly surprised at the crowd numbers. ‘I’ve got to admit that I was nervous. I didn’t know how the public would take to it, but they’ve embraced it, there were flags from all over the world and we had the Brazilians with their Samba drums – it was a fantastic atmosphere.”

The fans were treated to some awesomely close racing on the 3.93 kilometer race circuit, with plenty to cheer about for the Australian contingent – Will Davison finishing sixth in the Feature Race aboard the Foster’s adorned A1 Team Australia car, adding five points to A1 Team Australia’s World Cup of Motorsport tally. zzzz

Prior to the Sprint Race, an opening ceremony that celebrated the Australian culture, tradition and overall way of life warmed the big crowd up for the excitement of the A1 Grand Prix of Nations - from the Man from Snowy River to a celebration of multicultural Australia, the ceremony culminated in the drivers being presented to the huge crowd aboard Surf Lifesaving Boats.

Australian driver, Will Davison was one that was blown away by the reception he received on the grid.

“It was quite phenomenal,” Will said. “I thought we’d get a decent crowd, but it was bigger than I had anticipated. The reception the crowd gave me just blew me away. As for the result, it wasn’t as good as I would have liked, but you can’t complain, we got some good points today.”

The 24 A1 Grand Prix teams now switch their attention to the increasingly familiar task of packing up and leaving Australian shores to head for the humid climes of Malaysia and the Sepang Circuit in just two weeks time.

One thing is for sure – A1 Grand Prix has arrived and left it’s impression on Sydney, Australia and the 51,000 fans who celebrated Series Founder, Sheikh Maktoum’s vision of cars, culture and competition. Press Release A1GP

Formula Palmer Audi
Hildebrand Takes Strong Second Place on Overseas Debut Hildebrand Takes Strong Second Place on Overseas DebutJ.R. Hildebrand, from Sausalito, Calif., flew the patriotic Team USA Scholarship colors to a strong second-place finish this afternoon at Snetterton in the opening round of the six-race Formula Palmer Audi Autumn Trophy.

The 300-horsepower FPA car represented a significant step up for Hildebrand, who began his racing career in 2004 by winning the SCCA Formula Russell Championship, based at Infineon Raceway, and this year, in his first season of professional racing, finished a close second in a hard-fought Pacific F2000 Championship. After only one brief test in the FPA car a couple weeks ago at Bedford Autodrome, the 17-year-old qualified second quickest this morning, behind British Formula Renault veteran Josh Weber.

Conditions today were cool and dry, and Hildebrand was eagerly looking forward to his first-ever standing start: "I was fairly confident, although I didn't really know what to expect. I was able to talk about it with Joe Tandy, who won this year's FPA championship and was working as an instructor for the weekend. He was a big help, just giving some kind of concept of what to expect. "I had a fairly decent start but it wasn't quite as good as Weber, and the guy from the third position also got a flyer and came up alongside me probably only 30 yards after the start. So I got on the boost button [an identical concept to the "push-to-pass" system used in the Champ Car World Series] and I was able to hold him off into Turn One."  zzzz

Hildebrand maintained pace with the leader for the first half of the race before settling into a secure second.

"I realized I wasn't going to pass him unless he made a mistake, so I eased off to look after the tires, because we only have one set to last us the entire race weekend.

"I'm very satisfied with the way it ended," concluded Hildebrand. "Just being able to run over here in England and show well as an American has been a lot of fun. Everybody at Formula Palmer Audi has been great to deal with, so it's been a really good experience."

The youngster will have two more opportunities to continue his learning curve on Sunday. He will start from the third position in Race Two tomorrow morning, while the grid for the third and final race of the weekend will be set according to lap times posted in both of the first two races.

The Team USA Scholarship, now in its 16th year, has received support this year from Mockett.com, a Torrance, Calif.-based producer and supplier of  "Fine Architectural Hardware For Your Fine Furniture," Sparco USA, RACER magazine, Mi-Jack Conquest Racing, Dale Coyne Racing and former Scholarship winners Jimmy Vasser (1990), Bryan Herta (1991), Tony Ave (1992), Memo Gidley (1995), Buddy Rice (1997), Paul Edwards (1998/'99), Andy Lally (1999), Joey Hand (2000), A.J Allmendinger and Bryan Sellers (2001).

SunTrust Team Clinches Daytona Prototype Championship SunTrust Team Clinches Daytona Prototype ChampionshipMexico City, Mexico (November 5, 2005) – The No. 10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley of Wayne Taylor and Max Angelelli achieved their goal of the season by being crowned the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Daytona Prototype team champion and co-driver champions.

Although the team’s five victories and ten podium finishes in the 14-race series may have looked easy, it was far from it in the extremely competitive Grand American series. The fight throughout the season highlighted the No. 10 SunTrust team against the defending Daytona Prototype championship team of the No. 01 CompUSA/TELMEX/Ganassi Racing entry of Scott Pruett and Luis Diaz. The SunTrust team managed to lead the points all year after a stellar start with a victory at the Rolex 24 At Daytona, but the margin was very close at times, with the final 2005 point standings ending at 439-405.

“It’s a great day for us. What a great team,” said Craig Kelly, Corporate Executive Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer, SunTrust Banks, Inc. “They’ve done a fantastic job all year. They never gave up. The victory is all theirs.” zzzz

During the season, the SunTrust race team accumulated some pretty impressive statistics including finishing every possible lap of the season (a total of 2050), becoming the winningest team in Grand American Daytona Prototype history with eight victories (in the team’s two-year history), five victories this season, ten podium finishes and never finishing lower than sixth-place.

“It’s just the biggest weight off my shoulders. This championship belongs to SunTrust, Max, Bill and everybody associated with the team. I’m just glad I was here for the ride,” said car owner/driver Wayne Taylor. “To win a championship, another 24 Hours, five wins, become the winningest team in Grand Am DP history…it hasn’t settled in yet.”

“This year couldn’t have been any better, we achieved everything that we wanted and it will be very hard next year to repeat it,” said Max “The Ax” Angelelli, who earned his nickname this season by his incredible driving talent of cutting through the field. “It’s been a really tough year, even if it looked easy from the outside.”

“It was just a great year, a great team effort,” said SunTrust team director and owner of Riley Technologies. “I can’t say enough for how Max and Wayne drove this year. We completed every lap available in competition, which just means the drivers did their jobs by keeping it on the track and the crew did their job by prepping a great car. It was really pretty much the perfect year.”

This marks Taylor’s fourth career series driver’s championship. He won his last championship in 1996, with the Riley team, in the IMSA World Sports Car Series. He also won the IMSA championship in 1994. His first championship happened in 1986 in the South Africa Formula Atlantic Series.

“I would never have believed that I would have won another championship ever. I’ll be 50 next year,” stated the youthful looking Taylor. “When I think back on my previous championships in 1994 and 1996, clearly this championship is ahead of any other one for lots of reasons -- the competitive nature of the series, the number of professional teams, professional drivers from every form of racing has been here. The most special part was doing this with Max. He’s in a different class than anybody else. There’s no way I could have won this championship without him.”

For Angelelli, this championship is a long-awaited dream. His last driver’s championship came in 1992 in the Italian F-3 Series.

“For me this is very special. Wayne and I have driven together since 1999 trying to achieve exactly this,” said the emotional Italian. “There is nothing more special than to have this championship with Wayne.”

Today’s race at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez featured five car lead changes among four drivers and no cautions. Michael McDowell and Memo Gidley won the race by a mere 1.484 seconds over the No. 10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley of Taylor and Angelelli.

“I was very close and I think in two more laps I could have passed him, but we have to realize that it was a great championship, a great season and second place again, many podiums.” said the confident Angelelli. “It was really something competing against the Ganassi team. It was pleasure because they have a great race team, good racers, and it was really nice to say we beat them.”

An active media and public relations tour will keep the drivers busy as they await the completion of their new car for the 2006 Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series season. Test days for the Rolex 24 At Daytona will begin January 4-7, 2006.

Ferrari confirm Gene and Badoer Ferrari confirm Gene and BadoerThe Scuderia Ferrari team have confirmed that Spanish driver Marc Gene will continue as one of their official test drivers for the upcoming 2006 Formula One championship season. Gené, who wed his fiancée, Eva, on Saturday the 29th of October, will certainly have his work cut out for him as the Italian team concentrate on returning the titles to Maranello next year.

Gene’s duties will be shared by the team’s long term test driver Luca Badoer, who has also been confirmed for yet another season with the Scuderia. 2006 will be the Italian’s ninth season as a Ferrari test driver, a role he thoroughly enjoys.  Both drivers will be in action for the team later this month.

Seen in Mexico City - IV Seen in Mexico City - IVThe following people were seen in Mexico City Saturday:

(L to R) Bruno Junqueira climbing down from Newman/Haas timing and scoring stand, IPS driver Jeff Simmons looking for a ride in Champ Car, former McLaren mechanic for Aryton Senna Jo Ramirez (Mexican) with a lady friend

(L to R) Ryan Hunter-Reay in the Forsythe Racing pit, AutoRacing1.com President Mark Cipolloni with Cosworth's Ian Bisco, Timo Glock's beautiful German girlfriend Franziska Nickoleit, and Michael Valiante with Miss Edmonton

Seen in Mexico City - III Seen in Mexico City - IIISeen in Mexico City Saturday was AutoRacing1.com President Mark Cipolloni with Atlantic standout Katherine Legge surrounded by the five of the six finalists of the Champ Car Dream Team, (L to R) Miss Toronto, Miss Cleveland, Miss San Jose, Miss Australia, and Miss Edmonton.  The overall winner will be announced at the Awards banquet Sunday night.
Seen in Mexico City - II Seen in Mexico City - IICedric the Entertainer (pictured right with AutoRacing1.com's Steven Levinson) flew down to Mexico City on Kevin Kalkhoven's private Gulfstream V. He is staying at the posh W Hotel in Mexico City. When asked what sparked his interest in Champ Car he said that he attended the Long Beach Grand Prix and had his first up close and personal view of the series. He immediately felt the energy, the intensity, and the speed and became intoxicated with it, and it was love at first sight. And he knew that he wanted to somehow become involved with the Champ Car World Series. He also said that television is not able to convey the intensity and outright speed of these Champ Cars. He is looking forward to his first ride in the 2-seater and admitted that he may have to take it easy with the calorie consumption in the CTE-HVM hospitality area. Cedric is a bright businessman and a quick study. He will be a major asset to Champ Car. Steven Levinson/AutoRacing1.com
Champ Car 2-seater tops 190 MPH Champ Car 2-seater tops 190 MPHUPDATE We did forget to mention that the lap times of the 2-seater Champ Car were 10 seconds faster than the Grand-Am Daytona Prototypes, so when you go for a ride in the 2-seater, it's an experience as close to the real thing as possible. 11/05/05 The Champ Car Two-Seater reached a new milestone on Thursday, hitting a top speed of 190.8 mph during a session at Mexico City. The car, driven in the session by Mario Dominguez, eclipsed its previous high by more than 10 mph.
Fast Facts Fast FactsSome history on the Autodromos Hermanos Rodriguez:
  • The track was inaugurated on November 16, 1958. First race was held on November 20, 1959. Pedro Rodriguez won the 500 km. of Mexico City.
  • The first Formula One Grand Prix was held in 1962. Local idol Ricardo Rodriquez died after an accident in practice. Formula One races were held from 1962-72, and 1986-92. The track was first upgraded in 1986. The F1 track length was 2.75 miles (4.421 km). The Peraltada curve outside the baseball stadium was much like the Monza Parabolica.
  • In 1972, the track was named Autodromos Hermanos Rodriguez.
  • The last Formula One winner was Nigel Mansell (Williams-Renault) in 1992.
  • In 2002, the track was upgraded again to host the return of Champ Cars to Mexico City. The track was re-configured to run through the baseball stadium. The Champ Car track length is 2.782 miles (4.478 km).
  • Champ Car track record - Sebastien Bourdais (2004) - 1:25.919 / 116.733 mph.
  • Champ Car race record - Sebastien Bourdais (2004) - 1 hr. 39:02.662 / 106.327 mph.
  • Champ Car past winners - 1980 and 1981 - Rick Mears; 2002 - Kenny Brack; 2003 - Paul Tracy; 2004 - Sebastien Bourdais.

Paul J

Series Update - 2006 Testing Rules Series Update - 2006 Testing RulesChamp Car released its 2006 testing rules today. Among the highlights:
  • Annual Testing Calendar. 2006 testing may begin on November 8, 2005 and ends with the last race event of the 2006 season.
  • Allocation of Team Test Days. Test days are allocated to Champ Car entrants and are not transferable. Manufacturers and suppliers that have declared their intent to compete may only test through a registered team or other provision stated herein.
  • Team Test Days. Each full season entrant will be allocated 2 test days. All other testing will be at series sanctioned open tests only. Any further testing requests will be at the sole discretion of the Race Director.
  • Open Tests. Sanctioned open test sessions will be scheduled within the dates listed at these venues: March 28-31, 2006 - California Speedway (Road Course); April 12-14, 2006 - Portland International Raceway; and June 2, 2006 - The Milwaukee Mile
  • Rookie Test Days. Each entrant with a licensed rookie driver who is entered to drive in the current Champ Car World Series season shall be allotted up to a maximum of 2 additional test days for the entered rookie driver. Such rookie test days will not be counted against a team's annual testing allocations; however, such tests are not provided for in a team's tire allocation. Therefore, tires supplied for this purpose must be arranged by the team with the tire manufacturer. Entrants are limited to 12 dry type tires per rookie test day.
  • Partial Season Entrants. Partial season entrants will be allocated a reduced number of test days. Champ Car shall have broad discretion to allot test days to partial season entries on a prorated basis. In any case, the number of test days allocated to a partial season entrant will not exceed the number of test days provided for herein.
  • Testing During Event. Testing is prohibited at a facility once an event begins through the conclusion of the event even if the event is postponed or rescheduled.

Paul J

Morning Practice Results Morning Practice ResultsSebastien Bourdais finished first in this morning's Champ Car practice with a best lap time of 1:27.469.  Paul Tracy was second with 1:27.911, and Justin Wilson was third with 1:27.933.  Will Power was the fastest rookie, finishing sixth with a best lap time of 1:28.881. Paul J
New paint scheme for Rodolfo Lavin New paint scheme for Rodolfo LavinSeveral cars at this weekend's race have changed their paint schemes, including Lavin's pictured here.  The traditional green, white, and red paint on the HVM entry for Lavin has been replaced with the Corona blue and gold livery. Other major HVM sponsors are Nextel and Roshfrans.
French GP tickets go on sale French GP tickets go on saleA new date for the 2006 Grand Prix de France, 14-16 July, was officially announced by the FIA last week during their World Motor Sport Council meeting.  The 2006 Grand Prix de France will coincide with the French independence day weekend offering spectators a full three day racing weekend.

“We could not have chosen a more prestigious date than the July 14 to celebrate the 100 anniversary of the Grand Prix de France,” said Jacques Regis, President of the Federation Française du Sport Automobile. “Given the superb 2005 season, next years’ Grand Prix promises to be even more spectacular than ever and full of surprises."

Ticket sales for the event go on sale Monday, 7 November on the official website, www.gpfrancef1.com, or through the international ticket sales hotline +33 1 41 57 31 97(0,337 € TTC/mn). Press Release FFSA

Harvick expands his race teams Harvick expands his race teamsKevin Harvick Inc. will expand to two full-time NASCAR Busch Series teams and one Craftsman Truck Series in 2006, team owners Kevin and DeLana Harvick announced Friday night.  Burney Lamar, who has been a member of the KHI driver development program, will drive the No. 77 Chevrolet full-time in the Busch Series next season with sponsorship from Dollar General.   Lamar, 25, has competed in the NASCAR Southwest and Grand National West series this season and has run in several Truck and Busch series races.  KHI's current Truck Series team, led by crew chief Wally Rogers, will move to the Busch Series with Lamar.
Industry News
Cosworth to sell its own brand of motor oil Cosworth to sell its own brand of motor oilRace engine design and manufacturing company Cosworth will market its new "Performance Engineered" product line of synthetic motor oils, fuel system treatment and coolant starting in December.  They are specially formulated based on Cosworth's extensive engine development experience and the resulting understanding of the role lubricants and fluids in peak output and performance.  They will be sold directly at the online webstore, or by phone at 800-355-5880.
Industry News
Cosworth expanding aftermarket business Cosworth expanding aftermarket businessCosworth was selling aftermarket products for the Ford Focus but are now going to branch out and offer performance enhancing engine parts (heads, pistons, etc.) for the Subaru STI, Mitsubishi EVO, Nissan Q35 and the BMW Mini Cooper. Mark C.
TV News
USA TV reminders for Sunday USA TV reminders for Sunday
'NASCAR This Morning'
Texas Motor Speedway
11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
Laguna Seca  (10/15/05)
1:00 p.m.-2:00 p.m. ET, SPEED
MotoGP 250
Valencia, Spain
2:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m. ET (SDD) SPEED
Gran Premio Telmex-Tecate
Mexico City  (11/5/05)
3:00 p.m.-3:30 p.m. ET, SPEED
Dickies 500
Texas Motor Speedway
3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. ET (Live) NBC
Gran Premio Telmex-Tecate
Mexico City
3:30 p.m.-6:00 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
Valencia, Spain
6:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. ET (SDD) SPEED
'NASCAR Victory Lane'
Texas Motor Speedway
8:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m. ET (SDD) SPEED
WIND TUNNEL with Dave Despain
Guest Cohost: Tom Sneva
Featured Interview: Danny Lasoski
Featured Interview: Andy Santerre
9:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED

For a complete listing of Sunday's TV Programs, see TVRacer.com and Race Fan TV.

Ford signs its largest ever race sponsorship Ford signs its largest ever race sponsorshipThe season finales of the NASCAR Craftsman Truck, Busch and Nextel Cup series will remain Ford-titled races through 2014, under an agreement between Ford and Homestead-Miami Speedway announced today at the South Florida International Auto Show.  

The 10-year extension of Ford Championship Weekend is the largest motorsports sponsorship in Ford history.   The initial phase of the contract runs through 2009, with an automatic renewal that will extend that partnership to 2014.

The agreement continues Ford's role as "official car" and "official truck" of the race weekend, and continues Ford entitlement rights to the Ford 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series final event, the Ford 300 NASCAR Busch Series final event, and the Ford 400 NASCAR Nextel Cup Series final event.

"We couldn't be more thrilled to announce this agreement," said Burt Diamond, Ford Racing Technology Global Motorsport Marketing Manager. 

"It's been exciting to see the Ford Championship Weekend grow into one of the premier NASCAR experiences over the past three years, and this new long-term agreement will allow us to make it even more of a national 'destination' event."

The importance of the Ford Championship Weekend has grown dramatically the past two years since it became the climactic event in NASCAR's 10-race, 10-driver championship competition: The Chase for the Nextel Cup.

"With Ford Championship Weekend taking place each November in South Florida, it's the perfect setting for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup, Busch and Craftsman Truck Series championships each and every year," said Curtis Gray, president, Homestead-Miami Speedway.  "This long-term commitment further solidifies our outstanding relationship with Ford as we continue to elevate the premier status of Ford Championship Weekend as one of the most anticipated championship events in the country."

A1 Grand Prix
French team on pole in Australia French team on pole in AustraliaIt was a cliff-hanger finish to qualifying for the A1 Grand Prix of Nations, Eastern Creek, Sydney with A1 Team France sitting in the garage waiting to see if they had to go out for the final session to defend their pole position. Current Formula 3 champion, Alvaro Parente put in A1 Team Portugal’s best-ever qualifying performance, placing them second on the Sprint race grid for the first time while Neel Jani continued A1 Team Switzerland’s strong performance to date, rounding up the top three.

France’s stunning performance knocked even more time off the outright lap record for the New South Wales circuit putting in a 1.18.150 lap in the second qualifying session. With all the A1 Teams set for two fiercely competitive races tomorrow, it looks almost certain that an A1 race car will set a new lap record as by the end of the third qualifying session, all 24 A1 Teams had put in times under the existing record.

Commenting on A1 Team France’s third pole position of the Series, A1 Team France’s Nicolas Lapierre (pictured right) said: ‘We did enough to laps to get the time we wanted, we wanted to save tires for tomorrow. So far so good, we have had a very good weekend so far, we have a good car for tomorrow on some new tires. The first lap out was pretty safe but then my engineer told me to push very hard on the second lap and I had a very good lap and then after recording some good times we had to wait and see it was good enough. Yes there is pressure on me and I have to keep pushing because I want to hand the car back to Alex on top of the championship in the next race. zzzz

A1 Team Portugal’s Alvaro Parente went on to say: ‘I am happy with this second place because we were struggling in free practice. We improved quite a bit with some new tires on the car, we still have to improve, but we will keep working to catch A1 Team France. We are working hard and fighting to improve. I made a small mistake on the second flying lap but we have to find a balance now on the old tires for the race tomorrow.’

A1 Team Switzerland’s Neel Jani said: ‘It’s a really tough car to drive and the last three or four days including today I haven’t been very well, so I have really been feeling it in the car. So I’m quite happy with third place. Unfortunately I lost second place at the last minute but I’m looking forward to tomorrow. We’ll be making changes before the race to try and improve and get closer to France.’

 A1 Team Driver Aggregate Time
1 France Nicolas Lapierre 2.37.036
2 Portugal Alvaro Parente 2.37.526
3 Switzerland Neel Jani 2.37.636
4 Brazil Nelson Piquet Jr 2.38.082
5 Great Britain Robbie Kerr 2.38.122
6 Ireland Michael Devaney 2.38.627
7 Canada Sean McIntosh 2.38.636
8 Netherlands Jos Verstappen 2.38.669
9 Malaysia Alex Yoong 2.38.720
10 Mexico Salvador Duran 2.38.959
11 Italy Enrico Toccacelo 2.39.184
12 Germany Adrian Sutil 2.39.379
13 Australia Will Davison 2.39.402
14 New Zealand Jonny Reid 2.39.514
15 South Africa Stephen Simpson 2.39.895
16 Czech Republic Tomas Enge 2.40.109
17 Pakistan Adam Khan 2.40.397
18 Russia Roman Rusinov 2.40.671
19 Japan Hayanari Shimoda 2.40.889
20 China Tengyi Jiang 2.41.781
21 Lebanon Basil Shaaban 2.42.014
22 USA Bryan Herta 2.42.133
23 Austria Mathias Lauda 2.42.142
24 India Armaan Ebrahim 2.42.546

Marshall: There was no breach of contract Marshall: There was no breach of contractThe rumor that we broke this past week regarding Marcus Marshall coming to Mexico City and fighting for his ride with Team Australia in the Australian courts turned out to be true.  Marcus Marshall told AutoRacing1.com in Mexico City Saturday that, "They got me on a technicality and hence why we lost the fight in court this week.  However, there was no breach of contract and we will fight this to the fullest extent of the law." (Pictured right, Team Australia driver Will Power (L) talking with Marcus Marshall)
McDowell wins pole in Mexico City McDowell wins pole in Mexico CityMichael McDowell posted an overall qualifying-best lap time of 1:44.964 (95.553 mph) in the No. 19 Finlay Motorsports BMW Riley late in the session to claim the pole position for the Grand American Road Racing Association La Gran Final de la Serie Rolex Sports Car (November 5, Live on SPEED Channel, 4:00 p.m. ET) at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriquez in Mexico City.

The pole was the first ever for BMW in the Daytona Prototype category and the first career Rolex Sports Car Series pole for McDowell, who is also competing in the Champ Car World Series finale on Sunday.

"The experience of driving a Champ Car and a Daytona Prototype was definitely a big help in terms of being more familiar with the track," McDowell said. "The Champ Car is so high-strung that it gave me confidence to really throw the Daytona Prototype around. My teammate, Memo Gidley, who was actually born in La Paz, Mexico, did such a good job setting up the car that is was fairly easy to do the pole lap, and we can run that pace all day long tomorrow.". zzzz

Starting on the outside of Row 1 will be defending Daytona Prototype co-champion Scott Pruett, who qualified the No. 01 Telmex CompUSA Lexus Riley for Chip Ganassi Racing second with a quick lap of 1:45.302 (95.246 mph). Pruett and teammate Luis Diaz, a Mexico City native, trail the No. 10 SunTrust Pontiac Riley duo of Max Angelelli and Wayne Taylor by 32 points in the championship chase. Although mathematically alive in the title hunt, Pruett's chances of a repeat are slim. However, a win for himself and fan-favorite Diaz would put an exclamation point on a successful 2005 campaign.

"I knew it was pretty close and unfortunately I'm coming off a pretty bad accident last week in Atlanta, so I'm not actually 100%," said Pruett. "The Telmex guys did a great job, and Luis gave me some great pointers on the race track. It's all about going racing tomorrow, it's a big event for us. This is Luis' house, so I hope that we can come tomorrow and make a real hard run for the win."

Jörg Bergmeister will start on the inside of Row 2 after posting a third-best lap of 1:45.958 (94.656 mph) in the No. 66 Krohn Racing/TRG Pontiac Riley. Ken Wilden was fourth in the No. 6 Mears Motor Coach/Graydon Elliott Capital Pontiac Riley with a 1:45.992 (94.626 mph), and Matteo Bobbi was fifth in the No. 77 Crown Royal Special Reserve Ford Doran with a quick lap of 1:46.174 (94.464 mph).

Bill Auberlen will lead the GT field in tomorrow's season finale after qualifying the No. 05 Sigalsport BMW M3 first with a lap time of 1:53.200 (88.601 mph). It is the third pole of the season for Auberlen, who qualified first in class for BMW Team PTG in Round 3 at California Speedway and in the Crown Royal 250 at Watkins Glen International in September.

"This is something that I know, because this is the No. 16 BMW PTG car that has won a lot of races this year," said Auberlen. "Sigalsport bought all these terrific cars, and they are looking good. They brought a lot of my BMW engineers to this event, so it's a joy. I didn't think I would make it to Mexico, but I did, and I am so glad. This is very rare to see a crowd this great, and I can't wait for the race."

Auberlen will co-drive the No. 05 machine this weekend with Sigalsport regulars Gene Sigal and Matthew Alhadeff. Auberlen is searching for his fourth class victory of the season, having won at California Speedway, Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, and in the VIR 400 at Virginia International Raceway one race ago.

Paul Edwards qualified the No. 64 TRG Pontiac GTO.R second, but due to technical infractions, the No. 64 machine and its sister car, the No. 65 TRG Pontiac GTO.R, will start at the back of the field.

The No. 80 Synergy Racing Porsche GT3 Cup will now start second, with Craig Stanton posting a 1:54.554 (87.553 mph). The No. 14 Keen Cap/Toptul Porsche GT3 Cup will start third after a 1:54.958 (87.246 mph) by Leh Keen.

The Rolex Series cars will take to the track for one final practice session at 8:00 a.m. (9:00 a.m. ET) Saturday morning, and the green flag waves for La Gran Final de la Serie Rolex Sports Car at 3:00 p.m. local time (4:00 p.m. ET), and the 90-lap race will have a two-hour and 45-minute time limit.
Andretti Green Racing Welcomes Ironclad to Sponsorship Family Andretti Green Racing Welcomes Ironclad to Sponsorship FamilyAndretti Green Racing has announced a partnership with Ironclad Performance Wear, the leader in the performance wear category for construction and industrial professionals, for the 2006 Indy Racing League(r) IndyCar(r) Series season.

Ironclad will become an associate sponsor of Andretti Green Racing -- the winningest team in IndyCar Series history -- with visibility on all four cars.

"We're thrilled to have Ironclad join the family of sponsors at Andretti Green Racing," said Michael Andretti, who co-owns Andretti Green Racing with partners Kim Green and Kevin Savoree. "Not only are they providing the support that will help fuel our 2006 championship campaign, they are also providing our team members a technical advantage with their unique products."

Ironclad will work with the entire team to develop new gloves, personal safety products and apparel to help the team perform its duties more efficiently and more comfortably. Ironclad Performance Wear also will leverage the sponsorship to host customers at IndyCar Series events throughout the season, including the Indianapolis 500, and events at Chicagoland Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway.

Andretti Green's team members will utilize high-performance Fusion Force gloves and highperformance apparel. The gloves, designed for use by the entire team, feature the GriptecTM System equipped with 3MTM gREPTILETM gripping material - a highly abrasive material that provides a superior grip when mated to a surface with the same material. Each glove has a swath of gripping material on the palm and fingers, and each pair comes with wrapping tape or fabric squares to be applied to either steering wheels or pit tools. When used together, the Griptec System can create up to 300 percent more gripping strength, which reduces crew members' slips and misses on pit stops. The Griptec system lowers muscle fatigue, decreases shock and vibration and increases gripping capacity.

Since joining the Indy Racing League in 2003, Andretti Green Racing has claimed 21 IndyCar Series victories including the 2005 Indianapolis 500, three wins in the Pro Series and the last two IndyCar Series championships.

About Ironclad Performance Wear Ironclad Performance Wear, which created the performance work glove category in 1998, continues to lead the construction and industrial markets in innovation, technology, design, advanced material science and durability. Andretti Green Racing
SPEED Extends, Expands Champ Car Coverage SPEED Extends, Expands Champ Car CoverageSPEED Channel has agreed to extend its relationship with the Champ Car World Series through 2006, with plans to expand coverage of the series through multiple support programs.

SPEED race broadcasts, commencing May 13 with the inaugural Champ Car Grand Prix of Houston, will each be preceded by a 30-minute qualifying show to air the evening prior to the race. The package, which provides an overall increase in the hours of Champ Car coverage on the channel, will include a one-hour preseason special, plus the development of a "lifestyle" program (dates/times to be announced). Also new for 2006, SPEED will re-air each of the fifteen Champ Car races on the schedule, providing fans with more opportunities and greater coverage of Champ Car action throughout the season.

"We are pleased to extend and expand our relationship with the Champ Car World Series," said Hunter Nickell, SPEED Channel Executive Vice President and General Manager. "We've worked together with the series to develop a comprehensive programming package that will deliver every minute of on-track action, along with multiple on- and off-track support programs."

In addition, SPEED will broadcast coverage of all twelve events from the Champ Car Atlantic Championship, plus a repeat air, thus allowing fans to closely follow the on-track exploits of the next generation of Champ Car stars as they battle for an unprecedented $2 million prize to be awarded to the series champion.

SPEED Channel is the nation's first and foremost cable network dedicated to motor sports and the passion for everything automotive. From racing to restoration, motorcycles to movies, SPEED Channel delivers quality programming from the track to the garage. Now available in nearly 70 million homes in North America, SPEED Channel is among the fastest growing sports cable networks in the country and an industry leader in interactive TV, video on-demand, mobile initiatives and broadband services. SpeedTV.com
Hamlin to do Nextel Cup/Busch Series double Hamlin to do Nextel Cup/Busch Series doubleOn Friday, Rockwell Automation, which sponsors Denny Hamlin's No. 20 Chevrolet in the Busch Series, announced it had signed an extension through the 2008 season with the Joe Gibbs Racing team and that Hamlin would run all 35 races in 2006.

Last week, ThatsRacin.com reported Hamlin was going to be tapped to run JGR's No. 11 Chevy in the Cup series in 2006. An official announcement of that move is expected Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway.

Speaking of his Busch ride, Hamlin said: "Last year, they took a chance on a driver that had one Busch Series start and a couple Truck Series starts. It was that opportunity that put me on the map.

"Climbing into the top five in Busch Series points has been good, but we still have some work to do next season."

Negri and Patterson join Michael Shank Racing full-time Negri and Patterson join Michael Shank Racing full-timeMichael Shank Racing is pleased to announce the signing of Oswaldo Negri Jr. and Mark Patterson to a two-year program to compete in the Daytona Prototype class of the Rolex Sports Car Series. Negri and Patterson have raced a partial schedule with the team in 2005, taking a record-setting pole in their debut at Laguna Seca and scoring a podium finish in just their third start together earlier this season at Watkins Glen.
“We are really excited about having Oswaldo and Mark join us full-time beginning next season,” said team owner Mike Shank. “Even though they only ran a handful of races this season, they were impressive every weekend and I know that we will be a competitive force right out of the gates next year.”
Patterson and Negri will continue to utilize the Lexus/Riley combination next season, and are looking forward to continuing with the highly competitive package.
“We really enjoy working with Lexus and the guys at TRD,” said Patterson. “Their technical support is truly an asset to us every weekend, and both Mike and Oswaldo have great working relationships with them. Just like everyone on our team, they really want to win, and it shows in how much effort goes into this program.”
Negri, who raced to two podium finishes with Michael Shank Racing in 2004, is excited about the opportunity to race once again with the team that helped him establish himself as one of the quickest and most aggressive drivers in the Rolex ranks.
“Driving for Mike again with Mark (Patterson) is just an absolutely fantastic opportunity and I can’t wait to show what we can do,” said Negri. “I am also really happy to be racing with this team because we have a great relationship and I have never worked with a group of guys who are so well-prepared.”
Patterson, who has also been working with Negri as his driver coach in the Star Mazda series, shares Negri’s enthusiasm for the Columbus, Ohio-based team, and for their future together.
“Michael Shank Racing is without a doubt one of the best organizations competing in the Rolex Sports Car Series and I am excited about what we are capable of achieving,” said Patterson. “Mike and his guys are meticulous when it comes to preparing the cars, and they didn’t skip a beat when
we added the second car this season. Oswaldo is an ideal driving partner for me because he brings so much knowledge, and of course speed, to the table. His desire to win is all-consuming.”
Montoya attracts big names to Colombia Montoya attracts big names to ColombiaJuan Pablo Montoya's annual Race of Stars karting event returns to the streets of Cartagena, in his home country of Colombia, with a strong international flavour led by IndyCar champion Dan Wheldon, two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves, Montoya's McLaren teammate Pedro de la Rosa and former Williams colleague Antonio Pizzonia plus Red Bull drivers Christian Klien and Vitanonio Liuzzi and the new Midland F1 driver Christijan Albers.

There is expected to be a big crowd for the event which will benefit Montoya's Formula Smiles Foundation for underprivileged children. GrandPrix.com
Champ Car increases 2006 network TV presence Champ Car increases 2006 network TV presenceContinuing a steady growth pattern that has gained momentum over the last three seasons, the Champ Car World Series today announced an even stronger television package for the 2006 Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford season.

The 2006 package features seven events to be broadcast on CBS Sports and NBC with the remaining eight races to be aired on cable motorsports leader SPEED Channel. The seven Champ Car races on CBS Sports and NBC are the most to be shown on network television since the 2002 season.

"There is no question that Champ Car has made great strides in the last twelve months and we believe that the continued growth is evident in our 2006 television package," said Champ Car President Steve Johnson. "Our network broadcasts showed steady increases in 2005 and we expect that trend to continue next season as we build our relationship with our valued television partners." zzzz

The television schedule begins with network coverage of the season-opening Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on April 9, on NBC. The network will also cover one of Champ Car's highly-successful new events the Grand Prix of San Jose July 30, as well as Montreal on August 27th.

Once again, CBS Sports will broadcast four consecutive Champ Car races live in the months of June and July airing Portland, Cleveland and Toronto. With huge crowds at last year's premiere event, the Grand Prix of Edmonton will now debut on the network July 23rd.

"CBS Sports is excited to continue our relationship with Champ Car," said Rob Correa, Senior Vice-President, Programming, CBS Sports. "We look forward to bringing race fans the best of the Champ Car World Series."

The SPEED Channel broadcasts, commencing May 13 with the inaugural Champ Car Grand Prix of Houston, will each be preceded by a 30-minute qualifying show to air the evening prior to the race. The package, which provides an overall increase in the hours of Champ Car coverage on the channel, will include a one-hour preseason special, plus the development of a "lifestyle" program (dates/times to be announced). Also new for 2006, SPEED will re-air each of the fifteen Champ Car races on the schedule, providing fans with more opportunities and greater coverage of Champ Car action throughout the season.

"We are pleased to extend and expand our relationship with the Champ Car World Series," said Hunter Nickell, SPEED Channel Executive Vice President and General Manager. "We've worked together with the series to develop a comprehensive programming package that will deliver every minute of on-track action, along with multiple on- and off-track support programs."

In addition, SPEED will broadcast coverage of all twelve events from the Champ Car Atlantic Championship, plus a repeat air, thus allowing fans to closely follow the on-track exploits of the next generation of Champ Car stars as they battle for an unprecedented $2 million prize to be awarded to the series champion.

The Bridgestone Presents the Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford features some of the world's greatest drivers competing on the most diverse and exciting venues around the globe. Champions Sebastien Bourdais, Jimmy Vasser and Canadian Paul Tracy along with 2004 Roshfrans Rookie of the Year A. J. Allmendinger and Canadians Alex Tagliani and Andrew Ranger are among the series competitors. Drivers compete annually for the Vanderbilt Cup during three-day festivals of speed on oval circuits, temporary street circuits and permanent road courses.

2006 Television Schedule

Date Venue   Network Time 
April 9 Long Beach, California  NBC  4:00 – 6:00 p.m.
May 13 Houston, Texas   SPEED  9:00 – 11:30 p.m.
May 21 Monterrey, Mexico  SPEED  2:00 – 4:30 p.m.
June 4 Milwaukee, Wisconsin  SPEED  2:00 – 4:30 p.m.
June 18 Portland, Oregon  CBS  3:30 – 6:00 p.m.
June 25 Cleveland, Ohio   CBS  2:30 – 5:00 p.m.
July 9 Toronto, Canada   CBS  12:30 – 3:00 p.m.
July 23 Edmonton, Canada CBS  1:00 – 3:00 p.m. 
July 30 San Jose, California  NBC   3:30 – 6:00 p.m.
Aug. 13 Denver, Colorado  SPEED  3:30 – 6:00 p.m.
Aug. 27 Montreal, Canada NBC  1:30 – 4:00 p.m.
Sept. 24Las Vegas, Nevada  SPEED  12:30 – 3:00 p.m. *
Oct. 15 Ansan, Korea   SPEED  3:00 – 5:30 p.m. *
Oct. 22 Surfers Paradise, Australia SPEED  3:00 – 5:30 p.m. *
Nov. 5 Mexico City, Mexico  SPEED  2:00 – 4:30 p.m.

*All broadcasts are Live, unless noted as tape delay All times listed are eastern and subject to possible change

NASCAR Atlanta TV ratings NASCAR Atlanta TV ratingsUPDATE The final rating for last weekend's Nextel Cup race in Atlanta was a 4.7/11 share, once again up from the overnights. 11/01/05 NBC's broadcast of Sunday's Bass Pro Shops MBNA 500 from Atlanta Motor Speedway earned a 3.9 overnight rating and an 8 share from Nielsen Media Research, Street & Smith's SportsBusiness Daily reports. The overnight rating from the nation's largest television markets is down 7.1% from 4.2 last year. NASCAR Scene Daily Newsletter [Editor's Note: We expect the final rating to go much higher, as it usually does with NASCAR. The smaller grassroots markets is where NASCAR is strongest.]
Champ Car Practice Champ Car PracticeUPDATE Champ Car practice has ended. Tracy crashed with just a few minutes to go, but is OK and talking with Dominguez in the Forsythe pits. The car doesn't appear to be heavily damaged. The top three finishers were Tracy, with a best lap time of 1:28.684, Allmendinger at 1:28.852, and Bourdais at 1:29.231. Paul J 11/04/05 Champ Car practice is currently at the half-way point. Lap times for the top three are Allmendinger at 1:29.362, Vasser at 130.601, and Servia at 1:30.791. Tagliani is the only driver out of the 19 with no lap times posted yet. Everyone else is running. Practice ends at 11:30.
14 drivers confirmed for GP Masters opener 14 drivers confirmed for GP Masters opener14 drivers have been confirmed for next weekend's inaugural Grand Prix Masters race at Kyalami, South Africa.


 1. Rene Arnoux (France)
 2. Eddie Cheever (USA)
 3. Christian Danner (Germany)
 4. Andrea de Cesaris (Italy)
 5. Emerson Fittipaldi (Brazil)
 6. Alan Jones (Australia)
 7. Stefan Johansson (Sweden)
 8. Jan Lammers (Netherlands)
 9. Jacques Laffite (France)
 10. Nigel Mansell (UK)
 11. Hans Stuck (Germany)
 12. Riccardo Patrese (Italy)
 13. Patrick Tambay (France)
 14. Derek Warwick (UK)


Friday 11th:

FREE PRACTICE 1 09:00 - 10:00
FREE PRACTICE 2 14:00 - 15:00

Saturday 12th:

FREE PRACTICE 3 10:45 - 11:30
QUALIFYING 14:00 - 15:00

Sunday 13th:

WARM-UP 10:30 - 10:45
GP MASTERS RACE 14:00 (40-45 mins race length)


  • Minimum Front Ride Height 33mm measured @ the highlighted point on all chassis's.
  • Rear Ride Height min 44mm max 54mm
  • Front springs 1250lb/in , Rear springs 1000lb/in or 800lb/in (fixed)
  • Front camber -2.5 deg, Rear camber -1.5 deg, +/- 0.5 deg (fixed)
  • Wing positions between H4 - H7 front and rear (fixed)
  • Choice of 3 anti-roll bars 13mm / 16mm / 19mm front and rear
  • Toe is free (std front -10 rear +10)
  • Dampers are free (std front 15/15/20 rear 20/20/20)
  • Minimum weight at all times including driver 702kgs (car weighs 612kg)
    Drivers will be weighed inc. overalls/helmet/HANS and ballast will be added to the cars as necessary Prior to each session the cars will be fuelled for the maximum number of permissible laps for that session as per the Sporting Regulations.
  • Qualifying will be compromised of 12 laps in total (inc. out lap and in lap) thereby generating 4 timed laps from which the fastest time will be used to determine race grid order on Sunday.
  • As per Sporting Regulations a new set of tires may be introduced in each session. On commencement of the first session on Friday all cars will be fitted with a new set of tires. Thereafter each session may be started using the scrubbed set from the previous session, and new tires may be introduced at will. If the driver so wishes up to two new sets may be carried forward for the qualifying session. The qualifying session may be started on a scrubbed set. The race tires must be chosen from any of the sets used in the qualifying session. A maximum total of 4 new sets of tires per event will be allowed (Fri AM, Fri PM, Sat AM, Sat PM,). For the avoidance of doubt a 'set' = 4 tires.
Rolex Sports Car Series Provisional Practice 1 Results Rolex Sports Car Series Provisional Practice 1 ResultsThe top three finishers in this morning's practice in Mexico City were Wayne Taylor/Max Angelelli (Sun Trust Racing) with a best lap time at 1:46.204, Tracy Krohn/Nic Jonsson (Krohn Racing/TRG) at 1:46.762, and Bob Stallings/Alex Gurney (Gainsco/Blackhawk Racing) at 1:46.804 - all Pontiacs. Twenty-eight cars ran. Paul J
Midland to test Biagi Midland to test BiagiMidland have confirmed that former FIA GT World Champion, Thomas Biagi, will test with the team at Jerez in December. Jordan's managing director, Colin Kolles, revealed on Friday that they are delighted to be offering Biagi his first chance to get behind the wheel of an F1 car.

"Thomas Biagi has been very successful in different motorsport categories, especially in the FIA GT Championship," he explained.  "He won the title in 2003 with six wins and is currently fighting for the lead in the Championship this year.  I'm glad that we are able to offer him his first F1 test so that he can show his potential."

"After a successful career in World GT, I'm delighted to be able to demonstrate my level of performance with a Formula One car for the first time," said Biagi.

"In recognition of what will be an important step in my career, I have begun preparing myself physically and mentally for this test with an intensive training program.

"I would like to thank the team for giving to me this fantastic opportunity and for believing in my potential. I would also like to acknowledge the dedicated efforts of my manager, Eva Baldassin, who has played an important role toward achieving this."

Polish driver gets F1 seat fitting Polish driver gets F1 seat fittingWorld Series by Renault champion Robert Kubica visited Renault's F1 headquarters at Enstone yesterday in order to go through final preparations for his test in Barcelona next month. The Polish driver will join young Italian Giorgio Mondini, winner of the final Renault V6 title in 2004, in testing one of this year's championship-winning R25s at the Circuit de Catalunya on December 1st.

"From a technical point of view, the wind tunnel and the aerodynamic areas are a sight to remember," said the Pole, "However, my favorite part was the workshop where you can see all the racing cars. They have a reference for every single part of the car, and a very professional group of technicians working on them.

"It was also really impressive to see so many people around the car when I was sitting behind the wheel. I'm not used to having more than five people around my World Series Car, and you get an overall understanding as to why Renault has succeeded in F1 - they are mega-organized. You see how they check and care about every single detail. We talked about the test in Barcelona, and the engineer I will be working with gave me some homework to do on how to work the steering wheel!"

Papis says Mexico City a real drivers track Papis says Mexico City a real drivers trackRan into Max Papis after Friday morning Grand-Am practice in Mexico City.  "This is the first time I have driven here," said Papis.  "It is a great track, a real drivers track.  It's easy to over drive this track.  I missed driving here when I was in Champ Car.  My only Mexico race was Monterrey." Mark C.
Del Monte will not race Del Monte will not raceFabrizio Del Monte, driver of the #4 CTE- HVM Racing/Ford/Cosworth/Lola survived a massive accident during testing at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez Thursday, in preparation for this weekend's Tecate-Telmex Gran Premio of Mexico City.

After completing 35 laps and making steady progress throughout his rookie outing on the 2.789 mile road course, Del Monte made contact with the tire barrier at turn 13, destroying his #4 Lola, but fortunately escaping serious injury.

Del Monte was transported to the track infield medical center and was released shortly after. Following further examination including an IMPACT test by Dr. Chris Pinderski and the Champ Car Medical team, it was determined Del Monte has a concussion and has not been cleared to drive in the final round of the 2005 Champ Car World Series this weekend in Mexico City.

We spoke with Keith Wiggins and he hinted that he was not going to run Del Monte anymore this weekend unless he paid for crash damage.
Mexico City Weather Forecast Mexico City Weather ForecastThe weather is perfect today for practice and qualifying. While it's currently cool (55 degrees), the skies are sunny. The forecast is for the temperature to creep into the low 70s. Tomorrow and Sunday are supposed to be the same temperature-wise, but with scattered clouds on Sunday.
Seen in Mexico City Seen in Mexico CitySeen in the Champ Car/Grand-Am paddock today - Mike Hull, Chip Ganassi and Floyd Ganassi. Here for the Grand-Am race but we hear Chip is still talking to Kevin Kalkhoven.  Spoke to Mike Hull a bit but he is playing things pretty close to the vest with regard to the Dan Wheldon and the Champ Car rumors.  Mark C.

Floyd Ganassi (L) and Mike Hull

Mexico City Advance Race Information Mexico City Advance Race InformationChamp Car released some updates this morning for this weekends' events....The official lap distance is 2.786 miles. The scheduled race distance is 70 laps (195.02 miles)....Including 2 parade laps and 1 pace lap, the calculated distance of the race is 203.378 miles. Based on 1.85 miles per gallon, the total pit tank fuel allotment for this race is 110 gallons....Due to excessive turbo speed at this venue, the allowable intake manifold pressure will be limited to a maximum pressure of 39 inches of mercury absolute....Push to pass time will be increased to 180 seconds....The race will be subject to the 2 hour time limit or 70 laps, whichever comes first....During practice sessions at this event, the first observed pit lane speed limit violation for each entrant will be waived. Champ Car
Latest F1 news in brief Latest F1 news in briefUPDATE
Ralf wants wins
Aguri and Mark Preston
Schu hurts ankle
Schu cools rule disapproval
Indian plans to keep F1 ride
'Uncle' Jacques Villeneuve
Ferrari confirm Bahrain test
Nico 'ready' for dad's world
Wheldon - no F1 deal, yet
Fry reassures 'priority' team
F1 'not healthy' - Sauber
Number two 'rubbish' - Schu

Gene and Badoer
Ganassi expands Grand-Am team instead of Champ Car Ganassi expands Grand-Am team instead of Champ Car[Editor's Note: We already reported this days ago in this rumor.  The Indy Star finally figured it out.] At least for 2006, Ganassi Racing will only be a spectator at selected Champ Car World Series events. Indy Racing League team owner Chip Ganassi considered fielding cars in the rival series, but he appeased his primary sponsor (Target) by expanding his sports-car team.

Ganassi is a founding member of the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series, which will have a new street course race in Long Beach, Calif., as part of Champ Car's April 7-9 weekend. The Grand Am Series also will take its Daytona Prototypes on two new trips to northern California -- Monterey and Sonoma -- and return to Phoenix, a market Target would have missed with the IRL canceling the event there.

Ganassi figures adding an extra sports car is a more efficient use of resources than tackling a Champ Car program. He will use his Indy-car drivers, who have 14 events on their schedule next season.

"Grand Am cars are basically open-wheel cars with fenders on them," team general manager Mike Hull said. "It will be good experience not only for our sponsors but also for our (IRL) drivers."  Hull said former IRL champion Scott Dixon has requested more seat time, particularly on street- and road-course tracks. The IRL has three such races on its schedule. The team hasn't hired a second driver, although it is pursuing Dan Wheldon, the Indianapolis 500 winner and IRL champion.

Grand Am has one of the most experienced driver lineups in racing, which Hull said will sharpen his IRL drivers. Ganassi's combination of Scott Pruett and Luis Diaz Jr. should finish second in the Daytona Prototype class to Wayne Taylor and Max Angelelli, who drive the SunTrust car for Indianapolis-based Riley Technologies. The season-ending race is Saturday in Mexico City.  Hull said Ganassi will continue to explore the possibility of re-joining Champ Car for the 2007 season. Indy Star

Bruno Michel proud to see Rosberg graduate Bruno Michel proud to see Rosberg graduateWilliams announced yesterday that GP2 Champion Nico Rosberg will line up with Mark Webber in the team next year.  The German born Finn is the first driver to move up from the new for 2005 GP2 category to Formula One.

“To see our first champion confirmed in a Formula One race seat in a top team for the 2006 season, as part of a long term contract for the future, is evidence that our series works," said GP2 series organizer Bruno Michel. "I look forward to watching Nico join the elite of the world’s drivers in Formula One next year, and hope to see him continue the fine form he has shown us he is capable of in the GP2 series."

"With some of his rivals also looking at drives in Formula One in 2006, we may yet have a number of GP2 series graduates making the step up next season. It has always been the aim of this series to act as a springboard to Formula One for our drivers, I am positive that today's news is the first in a number of announcements to come.”

In his championship year Rosberg set a number of records including the most points scored by a driver in a weekend (19 from a possible 22), the most pole positions (four) and the most victories (five.) He stood on the podium 11 times, and was the only driver to score at every round. In Bahrain he became the only driver to take both wins in a weekend.

"I have had a good year, and the GP2 series really is a great championship with a good future, I think, because the cars are great, the set up is good and gives you just enough to do," Rosberg said. "There are very good teams, very good drivers, and displays very good competition. It’s a great training ground for F1." GP2

Schumacher happy to see tire changes return Schumacher happy to see tire changes returnThursday was the last busy day for Michael Schumacher before a winter break as the Ferrari driver met with one of his personal sponsors, the German company Vermögensberatung. "I am happy to be spending a few days on holiday," Schumacher stated. "However, it is also very pleasant meeting the Pohl family once more."

The fact that the holidays were drawing closer did not distract Schumacher very much for what has taken place over the past few days has certainly not gone unobserved.

"It is no surprise that I was pleased at Max Mosley's re-election as FIA President," Schumacher said. "Max has always looked after the safety of the drivers and tried to improve safety levels in our sport. He is always willing to talk and listen to our needs and he works to guarantee that everything goes smoothly and that calmness reigns in Formula 1."

"Talking of calmness, I have the feeling that my recent declarations have been misinterpreted," Schumacher continued. "I have already emphasized that I don't think that constant rule changes are a good thing and so changing the rules every year would not be advantageous to the sport. However, this does not mean that I am not in favor of the new regulations."

"In fact, I believe they are positive moves. For instance, allowing tire changes again is a significant step forward, above all for safety reasons. It was also an astute move to introduce the V8 2400cc engine. As to the new qualifying system, I think that we have to wait and see whether they will lead to the desired improvements." Ferrari

Massa pleased with the V8 data gathered' Massa pleased with the V8 data gathered'Ferrari wrapped up three days of testing yesterday at Vallelunga in which they had Luca Badoer and new-signing Felipe Massa on hand. Thursday's program was focused on developing the Bridgestone tires and comparing the performance of the two cars on the circuit: the V8 powered F2004 and the V10 F2005.

"We are pleased with the data we have gathered," declared Massa at the end of the day. "We were able to see something interesting that will be useful in Bridgestone's next stage of development. Further, I was able to run many kilometers with the new V8, confirming the positive impression I had last week. We, with the support of Shell, are making good progress in terms of reliability."

Massa drove a true eight cylinder engine while Badoer used a V10 in order to reproduce the conditions that will be in force at the beginning of next season.

The next date on the track is set for 19 November at the Sakhir circuit in Bahrain. Ferrari will benefit from the possibility offered by FOM to all the teams to test for four days on the track that will host the opening world championship race on 12 March.

The drivers who will be in Bahrain will be Luca Badoer and Marc Gené. Gené, fresh from marrying his fiancé, Eva, on Saturday 29, was recently unveiled as the Scuderia's official test driver for 2006 alongside Badoer. Next year will be Badoer's ninth season as a Ferrari test driver. Source Ferrari

A1 Grand Prix
A1GP Friday practice results A1GP Friday practice resultsLess than 10 minutes after 24 A1 race cars roared out of the pit lane for the first official practice session, the Eastern Creek lap record had been smashed. On his fourth lap, A1 Team Brazil’s Nelson Piquet Jr put in the fastest lap of the session at 1.19.266, also the fastest lap of the day and more than three seconds quicker than Tim Leahey’s 1.22.513 recorded in 2000 in a then, 3.5l Formula Holden. Throughout the session, another 13 A1 Teams also put themselves above the previous record time.

Commenting on his performance, Piquet said: ‘It was a good lap. The car seemed very good and I did a good lap with no traffic. We did a qualifying simulation and just went for it and it was good. Eastern Creek is quite a good circuit, and it’s not that easy. It’s quite abrasive on the tires so we have to make sure we get a good set-up for the races so we can make the tires last throughout the races. Some of the corners are a bit dangerous as there is not a lot of space and not much run-off so it’s quite tough which is the kind I like.”

Mid-way through the first official practice session, conditions turned to wet with all A1 Teams putting in slower lap times towards the end of the session. The weather cleared for the second session but none of the A1 Teams failed to beat the fastest laps recorded at the beginning of session 1. With A1 Team France resuming their position at the top of the timing sheet, Nicolas Lapierre recorded the fastest lap of the second session with a time of 1.21.037. zzzz

Lapierre commented: ‘We had a good strategy and we had a very good day, the team did a good job. It was difficult this morning with the conditions but we are getting better and I think we should have a good day tomorrow. I enjoy this track the first corner is great. The track is bumpy and it is easy to make mistakes here so I think the race will be very interesting.’

Pleased to see A1 Grand Prix head to an Aussie circuit, A1 Team Australia’s Seat Holder, himself an F1 Champion said: ‘It’s fantastic to be here on home ground. As one of the first people to be involved in A1GP and see it evolve and develop the way it has is extraordinary and to see it come to Australia and have it here at Eastern Creek and see it all come to fruition is fantastic for me.’

Both A1 Team Australia drivers had their turn behind the wheel at their home circuit with Christian Jones going out in the first session and Will Power out in the second. ‘This morning we had a new car and I couldn’t really go too fast until we had bedded in the new gear box. It took four or five laps until I could really push. Then the red flag came out. It wasn’t really a good session for me as I would have liked to have done more laps in the dry’ said Christian Jones.

Optimistic about his team’s performance, Will Power who took the car out for the later session said: ‘Early on in the session I was trying to match the pace, was tuning the car. Early on we weren’t that happy with it and I was still finding my feet a little bit, but we are making steps forward with it and by the time I was comfortable with everything the tires were well passed their best so I had to struggle a bit. We’re definitely not as far off as the times suggest and now with a new set of tires and we’ll be there or there abouts.’

Official Practice Session 1 (13.00 – 14.00)

 A1 Team Driver Time No. Laps
1 Brazil Nelson Piquet Jr 1.19.266 18
2 Mexico Salvador Duran 1.20.426 18
3 France Nicholas Lapierre 1.20.627 8
4 Switzerland Neel Jani 1.21.427 12
5 New Zealand Jonny Reid 1.21.540 12
6 Netherlands Jos Verstappen 1.21.626 13
7 Italy Enrico Toccacelo 1.21.654 17
8 Portugal Alvaro Parente 1.21.872 17
9 Canada Sean McIntosh 1.22.173 15
10 Great Britain Robbie Kerr 1.22.255 17
11 USA Bryan Herta 1.22.299 13
12 South Africa Stephen Simpson 1.22.319 14
13 China Tengi Jiang 1.22.379 18
14 Ireland Michael Devaney 1.22.428 15
15 Germany Adrian Sutil 1.22.563 16
16 Pakistan Adam Khan 1.22.623 12
17 Malaysia Alex Yoong 1.22.731 14
18 Australia Christian Jones 1.22.895 17
19 Japan Hayanari Shimoda 1.22.906 18
20 Lebanon Basil Shaaban 1.23.377 20
21 Austria Mathias Lauda 1.23.667 18
22 Czech Republic Jan Charouz 1.24.776 17
23 Russia Roman Rusinov 1.24.802 14
24 India Armaan Ebrahim 1.29.531 15

Official Practice session 2 (16.00 – 17.00)

 A1 Team Driver Time No. Laps
1 France Nicolas Lapierre 1.21.037 21
2 Brazil Nelson Piquet Jr 1.21.271 23
3 Switzerland Neel Jani 1.21.592 19
4 Netherlands Jos Verstappen 1.21.882 7
5 Mexico Salvador Duran 1.21.953 7
6 New Zealand Jonny Reid 1.21.956 13
7 Malaysia Alex Yoong 1.21.970 7
8 Germany Adrian Sutil 1.21.984 7
9 Czech Republic Tomas Enge 1.21.998 10
10 Canada Sean McIntosh 1.22.010 14
11 Portugal Alvaro Parente 1.22.021 3
12 USA Bryan Herta 1.22.084 17
13 Great Britain Robbie Kerr 1.22.173 16
14 Ireland Michael Devaney 1.22.174 17
15 India Armaan Ebrahim 1.22.567 25
16 Australia Will Davison 1.22.581 7
17 South Africa Stephen Simpson 1.22.785 8
18 Austria Mathias Lauda 1.23.101 14
19 Pakistan Adam Khan 1.23.127 2
20 Russia Roman Rusinov 1.23.230 9
21 Japan Hayanari Shimoda 1.23.512 17
22 Lebanon Basil Shaaban 1.23.513 19
23 China Tengi Jiang 1.23.917 2
24 Italy Andrea Montermini 1.24.118 14

IRL visits Grand Central Station IRL visits Grand Central StationUPDATE A reader writes, Dear Autoracing1.com, Comparing their safety record to those of other professional auto racing series and club racing, and given their status as a 100% throttle, low-technology oval racing series, how ironic is it that the IRL is attempting to educate the public on safety innovations and technology?  Mark Lee, Cincinnati, Ohio 11/03/05 The Indy Racing League will be among the exhibitors at the 2005 Popular Science Best of What's New show at Grand Central Station in New York from Nov. 8-10.  The annual exhibit, which features the top 100 innovations in science and technology, is expected to draw more than 1.5 million visitors.  The IRL's "cutaway" car, which allows people to view the inner workings of an IndyCar Series car, will be on display, and fans will be able to race against each other on two IRL simulators. The exhibit will be accompanied by educational boards demonstrating safety innovations and technology in open-wheel racing.
TV News
USA TV reminders for Saturday USA TV reminders for Saturday
NASCAR NEXTEL CUP - Final Practice
Dickies 500
Texas Motor Speedway
12:00 p.m.-1:00 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
O'Reilly Challenge
Texas Motor Speedway
2:00 p.m.-4:30 p.m. ET (Live) TNT
Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez
Mexico City
4:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
'Race Car Driver'
Episodes 9 and 10, Denver
7:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. ET (Replay) WGN
Sprint and Feature Race
Eastern Creek, Australia
9:00 p.m.-1:00 a.m. ET (Live) Setanta Sports

For a complete listing of Saturday's TV Programs, see TVRacer.com and Race Fan TV.

Industry News
New Ferrari road car design chief New Ferrari road car design chiefStarting from November 14th, Donato Coco will become Ferrari's new Chief Designer, replacing Frank Stephenson's position, now Head of the Fiat, Lancia and Light Commercial Vehicles styling centre.  Coco's role will be to lead design coordination and strategy and to stimulate and address Ferrari partners' creativity that, as far as styling is concerned, has Pininfarina as a historical point of reference.

Donato Coco was born in Italy, but he soon moved abroad. His studies in architecture in Besançon (France) and Automotive Design in London, led him to an international career.  In 1983, Coco won a design contest and he joined Citroen where he signed key style projects for the French firm.  Returning now to Italy, at Ferrari in Maranello, joins the GT team, lead by Deputy General Manager Amedeo Felisa.

Race of Champions
Gordon and Pastrana to represent Team USA in ROC Gordon and Pastrana to represent Team USA in ROCFor the third straight year Denver-based CENTRIX Financial will sponsor Team USA in the Race of Champions (ROC) - Nations Cup. Attending the news conference on behalf of CENTRIX Financial will be executive vice president, Jim Hancock.      

The 18th Race of Champions - Nations Cup will be held Dec. 3 at the 70,000 seat Stade de France in Paris. The site of the 1998 World Cup soccer final, the French landmark will make way for a challenging one-kilometer, figure-eight parallel course designed and built especially for the ROC competition.

Four-time NASCAR Cup champion, Jeff Gordon and five-time X-Games gold medalist and rally driver, Travis Pastrana, will represent Team USA in the ROC - Nations Cup. Also at the ROC, Pastrana is scheduled to perform a two-wheel freestyle exhibition that will include his trademark back flip.

In 2002, Team USA - Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Colin Edwards - won the Race of Champions - Nations Cup.

Approximately 10 countries with drivers from many racing disciplines, including NASCAR, Formula One and World Rally Championship, will take part in the prestigious international competition.

Jeff Gordon quote: "I hate that I missed last year's event, but I'm really looking forward to participating in this year's Race of Champions. Travis and I both want to bring the Nations Cup back to the USA., and his experience in rally cars can only help us."

Travis Pastrana quote:  "I have a lot of respect for drivers who have made it to the top in any field but especially for drivers like Jeff Gordon who comes from a dirt background and can now win in probably any vehicle he so chooses. Jeff is a great choice for the event this year and hope that I will be able to fulfill my role to help get America back on top of the Nations Cup." 

Foster Beer to sponsor Aussie team Foster Beer to sponsor Aussie teamFoster’s - Australia’s most famous beer and the most recognizable Australian brand name worldwide, has teamed with A1 Team Australia, to take on the world and challenge for victory among 25 nations in The World Cup of Motorsport, the A1 Grand Prix of Nations, being held at Eastern Creek Raceway this weekend.

Announcing its status as Official Sponsor of A1 Team Australia, Foster’s Australia Managing Director John Murphy said the company is an avid supporter of world-class sporting events, promoting international collaboration, healthy competition and excellence in sport. And, this unique event is shaping up to be a battle of champions on the world stage.

“Foster’s and A1 Team Australia has many similarities. Just as Foster’s has had a meteoric rise as a world class brand, A1 Team Australia is a world class racing team, rising to the top tier of motor racing; Foster’s promotes excellence and superior quality around the world, just as A1 Team Australia is promoting excellence in motor racing; and Foster’s is one of Australia’s greatest icons of all time, taking Australia and Australians to the rest of the world. A1 Team Australia will contest the battle between nations at Eastern Creek on the weekend showcasing some of the best that we have to offer in motorsport and taking the team to millions around the globe,” he said.

“In the spirit of international collaboration and excellence in sport, Foster’s is delighted to be an Official Sponsor of A1 Team Australia. Our sponsorship commences this weekend and will continue for the duration of the series. We wish A1 Team Australia every success for this weekend and the entire series,” Mr. Murphy added.

Alan Jones, Seat Holder of A1 Team Australia and the 1980 F1 World Champion, said it will be a very proud moment for him personally when the A1 Team Australia car officially enters the track carrying the branding of Foster’s, a truly iconic Australian brand.

“I would like to thank Foster’s for having faith in what we are trying to achieve for Australia – attempting to win the first ever World Cup of Motorsport. This also renews an association I had with Foster’s when I was driving Formula One. I and all the team are truly appreciative of their commitment,” he said.

Champ Car securing its future Champ Car securing its futureA reader asks, Dear AutoRacing1.com, Why are Kevin Kalkhoven and Gerald Forsythe buying up races and race engine and electronics manufacturers? Why spend all that money when it could be better spent on promoting the Champ Car drivers and the series? Dale Carnegie, Buffalo, NY

Dear Dale, Actually we think it's brilliant. Kalkhoven and Forsythe are nobody's fool. Tony George and the IRL had a plan to kill CART (now Champ Car) by stealing/buying everything of value that they had. They went after teams, drivers, sponsors, race events and even their engine company (Cosworth). Until Kalkhoven and company came along they were largely succeeding, but now they are being outsmarted at every turn and the war is beginning to turn in Champ Car's favor. It's now the IRL that is beginning to lose sponsors, teams, drivers, and races, but not because Champ Car is stooping to the underhanded tactics their foes used, instead it's happening because the IRL has a business plan that is a complete and utter failure.  They say every dog has its day and we suspect the IRL is self-destructing because they lost sight of their original goals and morphed into everything they said they were not. They originally pissed off all the CART/Champ Car fans and now have pissed off all the original IRL fans who worshipped oval track racing. If you read the fan forums you would know that most of the IRL fans are fit to be tied at the direction the IRL has taken in the past 18 months.

With regard to buying up races and companies by Kalkhoven and company - just as the France family owns many of the key aspects of their business, so too will Champ Car, to protect itself from those who covet their key assets rather than build their own.

Your point about spending more money on promoting the Champ Car series is a good one. Once Kalkhoven and company have secured their key assets and finished building their foundation, they will shift their financial focus to growth of the series and promotion of their drivers. Rome wasn't built in a day.

The most unfortunate things about the events that have transpired over the past ten years in open wheel racing in the USA are: 1) All the drivers the IRL has injured with their belief that open wheel cars should be racing side-by-side on high speed banked tracks, 2) The split and diminishing of the open wheel fan base, 3) The loss of sponsor money to NASCAR, and 4) The diminishing of the crown jewel of open wheel racing, the Indy 500. 33 is just a number and we suspect that will be more true in 2006 than ever before.

The exploitation of Danica Patrick, and the temporary boost in ratings the IRL got because of her, has given the IRL a false sense of security, when in fact their business is crumbling at the foundation and one day, when it collapses like a deck of cards, we're going to have to say we told you so. We wonder who is going to pay for all that crash damage and driver injuries when the engine manufacturer subsidies all dry up. Starting in 2007, perhaps sooner, Honda is going to sell engines to all the IRL teams, and unless they are going to also pump a lot of Japanese Yen into subsidizing the crash damage of the entire grid, we simply don't see a long term future for that business model. The rumors about the IRL seeking street races in San Antonio, LA and NY City is rather ironic and has the IRL fans in a tizzy. No matter which way the IRL turns, they are damned if they do and damned if they don't. This patient is bleeding profusely and the buzzards are circling. Mark C.

Industry News
Consumers turn their back on large gas guzzling vehicles Consumers turn their back on large gas guzzling vehiclesDespite softening gasoline prices, consumers continued to reject large vehicles, especially SUVs and pickups, last month -- a trend that could rub salt in the already wounded bottom line of General Motors Corp. and Ford Motor Co. in the fourth quarter. While car sales fell 3.8% in October, trucks fell off a cliff, declining 22.1% compared to October 2004. The light-truck category includes a variety of large vehicles ranging from minivans to pickups to SUVs and full-size vans. "Consumers are certainly not treating all vehicles equal, as SUVs continue to bear the brunt of the downturn," Robert Barry, an auto industry expert for brokerage Goldman Sachs, wrote in a research note to investors Wednesday. "We believe this mix shift is more than just gas prices." Barry views some vehicles, such as SUVs, as fashion goods and says they are simply out of vogue. Detroit Free Press
Labonte and Raines to No. 96 Hall of Fame Racing Labonte and Raines to No. 96 Hall of Fame RacingIn a press conference today at Texas Motor Speedway, Hall of Fame Racing announced that Terry Labonte and Tony Raines will co-drive the #96 DLP HDTV Chevrolet in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series in 2006. Labonte, a two-time Cup Series champion and 22-time Nextel Cup race winner, will campaign the #96 DLP HDTV car in seven races, while Raines, the 1996 champion of the American Speed Association (ASA) and 1999 NASCAR Busch Series Rookie of the Year, will drive the #96 DLP HDTV machine in 29 races. “This is a milestone day for Hall of Fame Racing,” said Bill Saunders, managing partner of Hall of Fame Racing. “Terry and Tony bring a wealth of experience to our race team, and on behalf of the team’s partners – Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman – we couldn’t be happier with the selection. As part of our relationship with Joe Gibbs Racing, we were able to use their expertise in selecting our drivers. Terry’s and Tony’s names were at the top of the list, and it’s a privilege to have both of them in our race cars representing DLP HDTV and Hall of Fame Racing.” zzzz

“Terry is a veteran racer and a champion and Tony is an excellent driver who has done more with less in the equipment he’s been in,” added Philippe Lopez, crew chief for Hall of Fame Racing. Terry brings three things to the table. He brings leadership, credibility and familiarity. Our cars will come from Joe Gibbs Racing, and Terry drove for them in five races this year. There’s a comfort level already built into our program, which will make the transition from Terry being behind the wheel to Tony that much smoother."

“Tony gives excellent feedback with common sense suggestions,” continued Lopez. “I had a chance to work with him a few years ago and the chemistry was there. We know he can drive when he has good equipment. He’s been able to take cars that some people probably questioned how he even made the race with and knocked down some top-20s. He’s done a lot with a little, but now he has the equipment to match his capabilities.”

Labonte will compete in the season-opening Daytona 500 and the four following races at Fontana (Calif.), Las Vegas, Atlanta and Bristol (Tenn.), as well as the two road course races at Sonoma (Calif.) and Watkins Glen (N.Y.). Raines will be the driver at all of the remaining Nextel Cup point races, including the non-point Nextel Open at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C.
“My focus is on driving the car,” said Labonte, who is essentially on loan to Hall of Fame Racing from Hendrick Motorsports, for whom Labonte will compete in 10 other races. “I know how the car should feel as far as getting it set-up. That’s something that’s tough for someone without a lot of Nextel Cup experience, because it’s hard to know what your car needs to feel like for 500 miles.

“I’ve known Tony for several years and this is a great opportunity for him because I think this will honestly be the first time that he’s ever been with a top-notch team. With me running some of the races, he can come in there and have a lot of confidence and be a real part of the team even while I’m driving the car. There’s a lot that goes into a team and what makes it work,” said Labonte. “Sometimes it’s good to be standing on the edge taking everything in. It will be beneficial for him to see how I interact with the crew when it’s his turn to get in the car. This is a really good situation.”

“I’m a big Terry Labonte fan,” said Tony Raines, who in addition to his ASA and Busch Series accolades has four NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series wins. “To have someone to lean on is going to help me and it’s going to help the team. I’ve worked really hard at making it to this level and I feel very fortunate that I’ve stuck with it and now have an opportunity to run in the Cup Series with an association with Joe Gibbs Racing. Running their engines, their equipment and being able to use their people is something a lot of drivers wish they had. I’m very thankful that Roger, Bill, Troy and Philippe saw what I’ve known all along – that I can compete and succeed at this level given the right equipment and the right people,” added Raines. “I know Texas Instruments is excited and the team is excited, but I’m really excited. I’m back in contention to win races. As a race car driver, that’s all you want to do. Success in this sport is about the relationships you make and the relationships you keep. This team has some of the best relationships in the business, and I’m proud to be a part of Hall of Fame Racing.”

Relationships are why Texas Instruments signed on with Hall of Fame Racing to represent the DLP HDTV brand. “Between strong ownership in Roger Staubach, Bill Saunders and Troy Aikman, along with the team’s strategic alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing, and smart drivers in Terry Labonte and Tony Raines, we feel that this partnership allows us to make DLP HDTV a recognized brand for the motorsports enthusiast, and for the sports enthusiast in general,” said John Van Scoter, senior vice-president of Texas Instruments and general manager of DLP products. “DLP HDTVs will let NASCAR fans see the races with incredible color and speed precision, which is why we’re here today and in the years to come with Hall of Fame Racing. We’re extremely proud to have Terry Labonte and Tony Raines representing DLP HDTV and Texas Instruments. They’ll ensure that our on-track product is as good as our own DLP HDTV product.” roger.staubach.com

Goodyear to test at Lowe’s Goodyear to test at Lowe’sUPDATE Goodyear booked track time Wednesday evening at Lowe's Motor Speedway to gather data on its tires following what took place in the UAW-GM 500 at the track on Oct. 15. In that race, blown tires led to numerous crashes and caution flags. In the aftermath, track president H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler has defended the track's surface that was smoothed using a diamond-grinding machine. Scott Riggs drove an Evernham Motorsports-owned Dodge in the test, which ran from 5:30 to 10 p.m. Riggs will drive for Evernham's team next season. Goodyear officials were hoping to better understand what happened last month and also to collect data that could be used in comparisons after the track is repaved next year. It was testing three tire compounds, including the one used in both races at LMS this year. ThatsRacin.com 10/29/05 Goodyear has a tire test scheduled Wednesday night at Lowe's Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C., with a team from Evernham Motorsports. Goodyear officials want to do a test to collect data before work is done on the track to understand why so many teams had tire problems there a couple of weeks ago. Roanoke Times
No. 51 adds sponsorship No. 51 adds sponsorshipIn addition to Marathon Oil, the #51 CEM team with driver Stuart Kirby announces two additional companies coming onboard for the weekend race at Texas. The first is New Holland, a brand of CNH, a global leader in agriculture, construction equipment and financial services, which will have a decal located in front of the rear tire. The second is American Eurocopter, a company specializing in the manufacturing of helicopters with a plant in the Dallas area, which will have a decal on the lower rear quarter panel. CEM website
Haas CNC closes on property for new shop Haas CNC closes on property for new shop#0-Haas CNC Racing will begin construction early in 2006 on a new 140,000 square foot facility in Kannapolis, NC after agreeing to a contract with the city to purchase nearly 23 acres in the Kannapolis Gateway Business Park. The deal will bring the 85-employee firm, which expects to add up to 70 jobs over the course of the next few years, to the city. As part of the contract, Kannapolis will provide a Level 1 incentive grant worth $212,243.85 over five years. "We're excited about the deal with Haas CNC Racing," said Patrick Pierce, partner, MarkPiercePoole Inc. "They are well-financed and provide a valuable presence in the Park. Their interest also validates the City's strategy to create a first class business park to help drive economic development " Haas CNC Racing fields the #0 car driven [currently] by Mike Bliss in the NASCAR NEXTEL Series and the #44 car driven [currently] by Justin Labonte in the NASCAR Busch Series. The company intends to add one or more race teams over time to the site. Haas CNC Racing also operates a large automated CNC tool manufacturing company based in California. "We currently operate out of a 40,000 square foot facility and needed more space," said Joe Custer, general manager, Haas CNC Racing. "The Gateway Business Park's proximity to Concord Regional Airport, Lowe's Motor Speedway, and I-85 was a good fit for our firm." For more information about Haas CNC Racing, please visit www.haascncracing.com. For more information about the City of Kannapolis, please visit www.cityofkannapolis.com. Businesswire.com
Partypoker.net to sponsor FitzBradshaw Racing entry Partypoker.net to sponsor FitzBradshaw Racing entryFitzBradshaw Racing has today signed a three-race marketing partnership with PartyPoker.net, the world’s largest online poker school. The sponsorship takes to the starting grid on November 5 at the O’Reilly Challenge at Texas Motor Speedway.  PartyPoker.net, a subsidiary of PartyGaming, will be the primary sponsor of FitzBradshaw Racing’s No. 40 driven by Carlos Contreras at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In addition, PartyPoker.net will appear as an associate sponsor for FitzBradshaw Racing’s No. 12 and No. 40 for the remainder of the 2005 race season.
German DTM
Opel withdraws from DTM Opel withdraws from DTMParent company General Motors (GM) has withdrawn Opel from the German DTM series at the end of this season.  That leaves the series with just two manufacturers, Audi and Mercedes.  Opel was struggling against the German brands and GM management decided to pull the plug rather than risk further embarrassment.
Herta to drive for USA team this weekend Herta to drive for USA team this weekendIndyCar veteran and road-racing specialist Bryan Herta will take over the reins of Team USA’s Lola-Zytek at this weekend’s fourth round of the inaugural A1 Grand Prix season, at the Eastern Creek circuit in Australia.  Herta replaces Scott Speed, who will miss out the race due to “scheduling conflicts,” according to a team release.
Stewart fires Lasoski Stewart fires LasoskiUPDATE 2001 World of Outlaws champion Danny “the Dude” Lasoski, unexpectedly released by Tony Stewart Motorsports last weekend, will be Dave Despain’s guest this Sunday on Wind Tunnel at 9 p.m. ET on SPEED Channel. This will be Lasoski’s first conversation with the media since the surprising announcement was made.  Tom Sneva, the 1983 Indy 500 winner, will be Despain’s co-host. 10/31/05 Tony Stewart Motorsports has released driver Danny Lasoski from the organization's World of Outlaws (WoO) team following a sixth-place finish in the 2005 series standings, team officials confirmed Sunday.  The No. 20 team earned two A-main feature event wins and five A-main preliminary event victories this season.  The team, owned by Nextel Cup Series driver Tony Stewart, has a search for a new driver under way. Stewart's operation is expected next season to be part of the new National Sprint Car League organized by NASCAR veterans Richard and Kyle Petty.  Lasoski completed his fourth year with Tony Stewart Motorsports.  He won the World of Outlaws championship in 2001, and finished second to 20-time champion Steve Kinser in 2004.

We wonder if Lasoski was fired because he refuses to support the new National (NASCAR) Sprint Car League.

New Molson 'Champ Car' GP of Toronto deal New Molson 'Champ Car' GP of Toronto dealMolson Canada and Grand Prix Association of Toronto today confirmed the transfer of race rights for the Molson Indy Toronto from Molson to Grand Prix Association of Toronto. Grand Prix Association of Toronto, a company wholly-owned by Champ Car World Series (CCWS) co-owners Gerald Forsythe and Kevin Kalkhoven, will become the race promoter and Molson will remain title sponsor of the event to be known as the Molson Champ Car Grand Prix of Toronto in 2006. The agreement is subject to final documentation and approvals.

"Given our long-standing commitment to this event, we are pleased to have reached an agreement that continues our partnership with Champ Car and our involvement in the race," said Mark Hunter, Chief Commercial Officer, Molson Canada. "The Molson Champ Car Grand Prix of Toronto has been a popular fixture on the City's cultural scene for the past 20 years and this move ensures that race fans will continue to enjoy this world-class event."

"Grand Prix Association of Toronto is very pleased that the future of the Molson Champ Car Grand Prix of Toronto has been secured by today's announcement. The Toronto event is one of the cornerstones of the Champ Car World Series and is a key to the continued success of the series," said Kalkhoven. "The event has a huge positive impact on the City of Toronto. We will work with the city to continue this quality event as established by Molson." zzzz

Molson's decision to transfer the race rights to Champ Car comes as a result of a thorough examination of the Company's role in the sports and entertainment industry. The analysis concluded that focusing its involvement as the title sponsor of the event is best aligned with the Company's commercial agenda and brewing roots. Molson remains committed to continue its deeply-rooted tradition of supporting community groups and maintaining an active involvement in sports and entertainment activities that are relevant to its consumers.

Today's announcement caps a twenty-one month period of acquisition activity for Kalkhoven and Forsythe, who also respectively own PKV Racing and Forsythe Championship Racing Champ Car teams.

"The acquisition of the race rights for the Molson Champ Car Grand Prix of Toronto furthers our mission of ensuring the long-term future and prosperity of the Champ Car World Series," continued Kalkhoven. "It is our intention to capitalize on the exceptional support Champ Car has in Canada and ensure that Canadian race fans continue to have access to North America's most exciting open-wheel racing series."

Through a series of high-profile purchases, starting with the acquirement of the Champ Car World Series in January 2004, Kalkhoven and Forsythe have moved aggressively to further the growth of Champ Car and the development of the series' premiere North American events. Purchases include engine manufacturer Cosworth (November 2004), Pi Electronics (December 2004) as well as the Grand Prix of Long Beach (May 2005).. Today's transfer of the rights for the Molson Indy Toronto solidifies Champ Car's reputation as North America's premiere open-wheel racing series.

"This is yet another positive for the Champ Car family," says CCWS co-owner Paul Gentilozzi. "These are exciting times and the racing will be better than ever. In 2006 we introduce a new formula for the Champ Car Atlantic Championship - the Swift 016.a chassis design with a 2.3 liter Cosworth engine, which has reached more than 40 orders for 20 teams. Then in 2007 Champ Car will roll-out its new package, the Panoz DP01 chassis built by Élan Motorsports Technologies combined with a 2.65 liter turbocharged Ford-Cosworth V8 engine. Everything is lining up as we had hoped and the real beneficiaries of all these changes are race fans around the world."

"The success of Champ Car events in 2005 both in Canada and elsewhere clearly demonstrate that our formula for creating weekend-long festivals of speed and entertainment are a winning combination and attractive to the urban audiences we reach out to," stated Forsythe. "More that 1.6 million people have attended Champ Car races to date including 200,000 at our inaugural event in Edmonton and 318,000 at our most recent event in Surfers Paradise! People enjoy our brand of racing along with the exciting events that surround a race weekend."

Grand American Continues Television Success Grand American Continues Television SuccessWith the 2005 Grand-Am Cup Series in the books and the Rolex Sports Car Series headed for a record-setting finale this weekend in Mexico City, the Grand American Road Racing Association has seen a major boost in its television numbers on SPEED Channel this year.  The increased action and close competition in both the Rolex and Grand-Am Cup series definitely appear to be catching the attention of fans, as both series have posted gains in television ratings, households and total viewership in 2005.

The strong increases have also seen both Grand American series trail only world-powerhouse Formula 1 as the top-three most-watched road racing series on SPEED this year through September 30.  Overall, the Rolex Series ranks in the top-five of all motorsports series telecast on SPEED this year, with only the Crown Royal IROC Series, the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, the ARCA Re/Max Series and Formula 1 attracting more viewers.  The Grand-Am Cup Series is right behind in sixth and ranks as the third most-watched road racing series on SPEED this year.

“With both our series on the ‘podium’ in terms of being the most watched road-racing series on SPEED Channel, we couldn’t be more thrilled,” Grand American President Roger Edmondson said.  “The success of both the Rolex Sports Car Series and the Grand-Am Cup Series can be attributed to the great teams, drivers and sponsors in both championships, and the fans are the ones who benefit from the increased competition.”

On the Rolex Series front, viewership and households continued to maintain double-digit increases in the final half of the season.  Following the EMCO Gears Classic at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (Round 10), total viewership was up 20%, while households increased by 12%. Overall, the Rolex Series is attracting nearly a quarter-million viewers each race.  Strong preliminary numbers recorded from the recent VIR 400 and an expected large audience for this weekend’s live telecast of the season-ending race in Mexico City also bode well for a strong finish to the season with 2005’s impressive gains staying on pace.

Paul Newman forms Atlantic team Paul Newman forms Atlantic team[Editor's Note: You have to hand it to Paul Newman, when he says he is going to do something, he does it.] After more than 20 extremely successful seasons as a team owner in the Champ Car World Series, Paul Newman is bringing his act to the Atlantic stage. The legendary actor will team up with his longtime friend and former racer Eddie Wachs to form the Newman/Wachs Racing team. The squad plans to field a two-car effort in the 2006 Champ Car Atlantic Championship Presented by Yokohama.

After partnering with Carl Haas in 1983 to create the Newman/Haas Racing Champ Car team, Newman has helped guide Champ Car's winningest active team to nearly 90 race victories in 23 seasons. Newman/Haas just captured its sixth Champ Car title with Sebastien Bourdais' victory in Surfers Paradise, Australia on October 23.

While Newman hopes to continue his team's success at the Champ Car level, he will join a wealth of motorsports expertise at Newman/Wachs Racing as he strives to bring that same winning attitude to the Atlantic ranks next season. The Academy-Award winning actor met Eddie Wachs when both men were racing in the Can-Am series in the early 80s. Wachs, who also raced in Trans-Am, Super Vee and at the SCCA pro level, has remained close friends with Newman over the years and the two have decided to band together and form their own team. Their goal is to develop young racing talent in North America's top open-wheel development series.

Joining Newman and Wachs on the team will be former Formula 5000 competitor Michael Brockman, SCCA Trans-Am legend Horst Kwech and former Atlantic engineer and team owner Ove Olsson. Between them, the racing veterans bring nearly 200 years of experience on the track.

"This effort is an opportunity for all of us to give something back to the sport in the development of a new class of drivers," said Wachs. "There's a lot of knowledge on this team and we want to be able to share that knowledge and pass on the torch to some up-and-coming racers."

Newman/Wachs Racing will be headquartered on Chicago's North Side and Olsson, whose Olsson Engineering team competed for six seasons in the Atlantic championship beginning in 1996, will serve as team manager.

"This is an exciting time in the Atlantic series and we're happy that our team can be a part of it," said Newman. "We'll obviously be focused on driver development, bringing a keen interest and an expressed desire to train and groom the next generation of champions in our sport."

Newman/Wachs Racing is currently scouting young racing talent and the squad expects to start testing prospective drivers in January. The team will run Swift 014.a chassis in off-season testing before taking possession of its two new Swift 016.a/Cosworth/Yokohama Atlantic cars in early March.

Ferrari conclude Vallelunga test Ferrari conclude Vallelunga testThe third and final day of testing this week for Ferrari saw the Italian team working once again today at the Vallelunga circuit, near Rome. Under sunny skies, the program for the day centered on Bridgestone tire development and a comparison of the two cars available - the V8 powered F2004 and the V10 powered F2005. By the end of the day a total of 140 laps of the 4.085KM circuit had been completed: 63 by Luca Badoer (best time 1:14.169) and 77 by Felipe Massa (1:14.785s). Ferrari
Who's Your Daddy Energy Drink sponsors NASCAR team Who's Your Daddy Energy Drink sponsors NASCAR teamWho's Your Daddy, Inc. and its 'King of Energy' Drink Make NASCAR Debut as Primary Sponsor of No. 58 Car at The NASCAR Busch Series, and No. 65 at the Silverado 350 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series at Texas Motor Speedway

Who's Your Daddy, Inc. is Thrilled to Announce that it Will be the Primary Sponsor of the Glynn Motorsports Racing Team's No. 58 Car for the NASCAR Busch Series, and No. 65 Truck for the Silverado 350 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series at the Texas Motor Speedway November 4th and 5th, Both Events will be Televised Exclusively on TNT

SAN DIEGO, CA - Who's Your Daddy (OTCBB:WYDY) announced today they will launch a national marketing campaign through sponsorship of the first ever "Who's Your Daddy -- Energy Drink" NASCAR Car and Truck Series.

Regan Smith will drive the No. 58 Car for the NASCAR Busch Series at the Texas Motor Speedway, while Tim Fedewa will be driving the No. 65, "Who's Your Daddy" Dodge Ram Truck in the Silverado 350 NASCAR Craftsman Truck series.

"I'm proud that Who's Your Daddy selected our team to make its entry into NASCAR," said Fedewa who will be making his seventh start for the Glynn Motorsports team. "The team finished 8th in June, and I'm looking forward to improving on that performance Friday night."

The sponsorship deal and announcement came after the "King of Energy" Launch at Lowe's Speedway in Charlotte, N.C. Executives of Who's Your Daddy and Glynn Motorsports met in Charlotte. The talks and discussions went extraordinarily well, as both the Glynn Motorsports Team, and Who's Your Daddy Inc. are ecstatic about the opportunity to work together.

"We've been getting stronger as a team each week, and we've been qualifying well the past two weeks. If we can improve our race performances to equal our qualifying efforts, we'll finish the year on a strong note," added Fedewa.

Glynn Motorsports is owned by Phoenix businessman, Scott Glynn. After starting and running a widely successful business, Glynn's history in racing led him to invest in the growing sport of NASCAR.

"I've always been involved in motor sports, from dirt bikes to racing off-shore powerboats," Glynn said. "With the Who's Your Daddy brand and image, along with my business experience and well tuned race team, this should prove to be both dynamic and exciting."

Glynn Motorsports' has a 50,000 square foot state-of-the-art shop in Mooresville, N.C., which houses Glynn's established NASCAR Busch Series, and NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series teams.

"We're proud to have Who's Your Daddy join us as our primary sponsor at NASCAR," said Jason Butler, General Manager for Glynn Motorsports. "We've been competitive in both series, and we're looking forward to a good weekend for the new Who's Your Daddy, Car and Truck."

Who's Your Daddy envisions fantastic results from the Sponsorship of NASCAR with full on support on behalf of its national distributors and retailers. The Who's Your Daddy catch phrase is known and used widely around the world and particularly with the NASCAR demographic. Everyone both in and out of the organization feels it's the right drink for the right market.

Danica does Las Vegas Danica does Las VegasIndyCar driver Danica Patrick was spotted dining at Spago (Forum Shops at Caesars Palace casino in Las Vegas) on Tuesday.  We assume she is in Vegas for the SEMA show.
Mexico City Hot Tips Mexico City Hot Tips
Bourdais Back-to-Back– When Sebastien Bourdais took the green flag in Australia he clinched the 2005 Champ Car World Series Championship and became the third driver to record back-to-back championships in his second and third years of competition, joining the ranks of Champ Car Champions Mario Andretti and Alex Zanardi.

The Pride of Mexico – This weekend the people of Mexico City will have three countrymen to cheer for. Hometown driver Mario Dominguez is the only driver to score a podium finish at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez. He accomplished this feat in 2003 when he drove his mount to a third place finish. Joining him will be San Luis Potosi native Rodolfo Lavín who has two-top ten finishes in five starts this season. Hometown hero Homero Richards will be making his first Champ Car start this weekend. He is a former Formula Renault Champion.

McDowell Double Dipping – In Mexico City Michael McDowell will be making his second Champ Car start, while gaining extra track time by running the Grand Am Race on Saturday. McDowell is currently finishing his first season in Grand Am driving the Finlay Motorsports BMW Riley with Champ Car veteran Memo Gidley. In his first Champ Car race with Rocketsports, McDowell finished in the twelfth position after loosing a front wing. zzzz

At Home Debut – This weekend Homero Richards will be making his first Champ Car start in his home town of Mexico City, with Nextel and CTE-HVM Inc. Richards has driven for three consecutive years in the Formula Renault where he became champion twice. Richards tested with PKV Racing a year ago and also tested with HVM-CTE Racing last month in Sebring.

Mexico Crowds –When Champ Car travels to the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez crowds always seem to show up in epic proportions. Last year more than 348,000 fans crowded the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez grandstands. The Mexico City event holds the Champ Car record for largest attendance at 402,413 set in 2003.

Against the Glock– In Australia Timo Glock wrapped up the Roshfrans Rookie of the year title by having a solid top-six finish in the Lexmark Indy 300. Glock was aided in capturing the award by his first podium finish of the season in Montreal. Glock is the first German driver to win the Jim Trueman Rookie-of-the-Year trophy.

Atlantic Acer Debuts - while 2005 Toyota Atlantic champion Charles Zwolsman will make his Champ Car debut in Mexico City in a third car for Team Australia. Zwolsman is making the step up after a championship season that saw him earn three wins, five poles and eight podiums on his way to the title. The 26-year-old driver from the Netherlands has a strong open-wheel road-racing background, having competed in numerous European formula including the German F3 and Formula 3 Euro Series.

France First? – France is currently a single point from wrapping up the 2005 Nation’s cup. In order to clinch the title a single driver from France needs to take the green flag in Mexico City in order for France to win its first-ever Nation’s Cup. Currently, Canada holds down the second spot in the standings 37 points ahead of third place Spain.

Valuable Points Positions – Even with the championship clinched there are still some valuable points up for grabs going into Mexico City. Currently only ten points separates the third and fourth positions held by Justin Wilson and Paul Tracy. The chase for the fifth position is also going strong with only ten points separating fifth through eighth place in the standings. Going into the last race of the year position is important as each step up from tenth to fifth in the standings pays an additional $10,000 and going from fourth to third could mean an extra $50,000 in year-end bonus money.

Finishing What He Starts – Sebastien Bourdais has been running at the finish of each of the 12 events this season and is the only driver to do so this year. Remarkably, since 1956, only four drivers have started and been running at the finish of every race on the schedule. Jimmy Vasser is most recent driver to accomplish the feat in his 1996 championship season. The others are Al Unser Jr. (1992), A.J. Foyt (1963) and Jim McElreath (1963).

Servia Breaks Through – On his 95th career start Oriol Servia broke though and recorded his first career win in Montreal. The Spaniard has had a career building season in 2005 recording seven podium finishes in nine races and has vaulted himself into second in the series standings, since taking over the Newman/Haas seat in the #2 PacifiCare-sponsored car for the injured Bruno Junqueira. Last weekend in Australia Servia added to his list of firsts by winning the pole for the Lexmark Indy 300.

All for safety – The Champ Car Safety Team and the on-site, state-of-the-art medical team led by Dr. Chris Pinderski, combined with the skill of the drivers and teams of the series have put Champ Car at the top of the list as one of the safest racing series in the world. The 2005 season has been incident-free 10 races into the season; in fact the last driver to miss a race due to an injury sustained in a Champ Car event was in Cleveland in 2003 when Tiago Monteiro was sidelined for one race by a mild concussion.

Track News
New road course planned New road course plannedMiddle Creek, a new proposed race track in Louisburg, Kansas, just south of Kansas City, is proposing to develop a high-performance road course and motorsports club. The concept shares similarities with a golf-oriented country club, where members join and have a right to use the facilities in exchange for their initiation fee and annual dues. The difference is that members of Middle Creek will, for the most part, consist of motorsports and sports car enthusiasts, racers, and car collectors.

To be located on the southwest corner of highway 69 and 335th street, the track will be open to members and will also be available for rent to various car clubs, law enforcement groups, and driver's education schools. Members of the club are obligated to learn the rules and conduct, as well as the physics associated with high performance motoring. Members can then enjoy the ability to drive street legal cars or actual racecars in a controlled environment.

The Club at Middle Creek has re-submitted its application for a Conditional Use Permit to Miami County. A public meeting will be held on Tuesday, November 15 at 6:00 p.m. at the Louisburg Middle School to discuss the issues pertaining to the CUP re-application.

As planned, the road course will consist of two sub tracks of approximately 2.2 miles (west track) and 1.6 miles (east track) for a total of 3.8 miles. The sub-tracks are designed such that they can be operated as one complete course, or as two separate courses that can be utilized simultaneously. This design philosophy will allow for one of the tracks to be available to members while the remaining track may be rented to various car clubs, law enforcement agencies or drivers' schools.

The road course will be approximately 40 feet wide and is lined on both sides by "safety" or "runoff" zones that will be smooth, basically level to the same longitudinal and cross grades of the track and will have a grass surface. Where it is deemed necessary, the safety zones will be lined by guardrail and/or three row, bolted tire barriers. The intent with the safety zones is to provide the largest practical unimpeded run-off areas in which vehicles can be brought back under control without impacting any impediments. Spectator fencing will be erected around the edge of the safety zone in all areas accessible for viewing and concrete curbs will be installed at the apex of all corners and along the exit trajectory of most turns.

Some team owners welcome team restrictions Some team owners welcome team restrictionsCal Wells III sat outside his hauler at Atlanta Motor Speedway, surrounded on all sides by larger, better-funded teams.

When he goes looking for sponsorship dollars, he must compete with behemoths such as Roush Racing. When he tries to talk with a promising driver, he knows that a super team such as Hendrick Motorsports could be ready to swoop in. No wonder Wells was happy to hear that NASCAR plans to limit the number of teams a car owner will be able to field in the Nextel Cup series.

"As it relates to me personally, I'm in favor of it. As it relates to making this a better sport, I'm in favor of it," said Wells, owner of PPI Motorsports. "I think it's going to be very good for the garage area, very good for the sponsors, very good for NASCAR."

Of course, teams such as Roush and Hendrick don't see it that way. They've used the formula that works for any successful business - hard work, ingenuity and persistent expansion.

Together, those teams have combined to win 22 of 33 races this year.

"Obviously, there's some owners who would disagree with me," Wells said. "I respect that. Roush has done a great job and deserves everything they get, as does Hendrick." More at Autonet.ca

Long to drive Dream Machine at Texas Long to drive Dream Machine at TexasCarl Long will be driving the #00 RoadLoans.com / Aarons Dream Machine for McGlynn Racing this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. Fresh off his career-best qualifying effort in Atlanta, Long looks to top that performance this weekend in Texas. McGlynn Racing welcomes RoadLoans.com to the team and look forward to a long-lasting relationship with Chris Goodman (Sr. VP, RoadLoans.com) and his team now and in the future. Driver Carl Long on driving the Aarons Dream Machine: "DW (Darrel Waltrip) has been wanting to drive the Dream Machine for a long time and since he owes me a favor for loaning my car to him a few years back, Michael (Waltrip) is letting me beat his brother to the punch and drive the Aarons Dream Machine this weekend. Maybe DW can bring the Dream Machine Jr. down to my place and cut my grass sometime."

Team Owner Ray McGlynn on new sponsors: "I want to thank our primary sponsor, Royal Administration, for allowing us the flexibility to move them all over the car and occasionally off the car to bring on new sponsors. The team is more consistent than ever and sponsors are beginning to realize they can join a small team like us while we are still growing and capitalize on NASCAR's enormous popularity at a level they can handle." This weekend's race also marks the arrival of the team's newest charitable organization, the Young Racers of America (YRA). As spokesman for the YRA, Carl Long wants to create further awareness for young racers and build a support system for youth drivers everywhere. McGlynn Racing PR

Centrix to sponsor No. 10 at Texas Centrix to sponsor No. 10 at TexasScott Riggs will visit Texas Motor Speedway this weekend where he will pilot the #10 Centrix Financial/Valvoline Chevrolet in Sunday's Nextel Cup Series Dickies 500. The primary sponsorship on Riggs' car in Texas will be the blue, white and gold colors of Centrix Financial. Valvoline, Riggs's major sponsor for the majority of the 36 point races, will take on an associate role during this weekend's race. MB2 Motorsports
Earnhardt among those inducted into Hall Earnhardt among those inducted into HallThe late Dale Earnhardt, a seven-time NASCAR champion, heads the latest class of inductees to the International Motorsports Hall of Fame. Earnhardt is joined by team owner Jack Roush, NASCAR ace Harry Gant, female racing pioneer Janet Guthrie and racing executive H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler in the class to be inducted April 27. "This is one heck of a class for 2006," Jim Freeman, executive director of the Hall, said Wednesday. Herald-Sun
Labbe begins work for Yates Labbe begins work for YatesBeginning this weekend at Texas Motor Speedway, Richard “Slugger” Labbe will serve as a consultant for all three Robert Yates Racing Teams (#88 UPS, #38 M&M’S®, #90 CitiFinancial-Busch). Labbe, who previously worked with the #19 Team, returns to RYR where he served as crew chief for the #28 Ford in 1998. Elevation Group/RYR PR
A1 Grand Prix
New business leader for Australian team New business leader for Australian teamWith the A1 Grand Prix of Nations beginning tomorrow in Australia, the corporate structure of the Australian operation has been strengthened by the appointment of Roy Pater as Chief Executive Officer.

Pater, with a strong business background in the IT&T and automotive sectors will be CEO of A1 Team Australia and a Director of A1GP of Nations, Australia Pty Ltd., the company established to run the Australian leg of the 12 race ‘World Cup of Motorsport’ series. (A1 Team Australia’s new CEO, Roy Pater (right) is pictured with His Highness Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Al Maktoum – Founder, President and Chairman of A1 Grand Prix and The Hon. Sandra Nori MP – New South Wales Minister for Tourism Sport and Recreation.)

The former South African, who is now an Australian citizen, will work alongside A1 Team Australia’s Team Principal, 1980 World Formula 1 Champion, Alan Jones and Director Peter Nolan in over-seeing the business of A1 Team Australia and the A1 Grand Prix of Nations at Eastern Creek this weekend.

“A1 Team Australia has a very strong background in Motorsport,” said Pater. “Alan Jones is one of the most respected authorities on motorsport worldwide and Alan Docking Racing is well renowned as one of the best open-wheel teams in the world. My role will be to facilitate the business side of A1 Grand Prix in Australia and build A1 Team Australia into a viable enterprise for all the stakeholders involved.”

Throughout his career, Pater, who moved from South Africa to Australia in 2000 has specialized in startup companies, particularly in Asia Pacific and South Africa, having successfully established three profitable startup companies, something he relates to A1 Grand Prix.

“A1 Grand Prix is a very new company. In a very short time, it has established a business model covering 25 national franchises, 12 events around the globe, all being overseen by a global office. That would be a massive undertaking in five years, so my challenge is to make the Australian arm profitable and establish a solid strategic local business model.”

F1 race tries to stop A1GP name F1 race tries to stop A1GP nameAustralia this weekend hosts the fourth round of the A1 Grand Prix series in the face of an attempt to stop it using the term Grand Prix by the organizers of the country's Formula 1 race.

Australia's A1 franchise holder, Alan Jones, told Australian radio this afternoon that a writ had been served on A1 in the run up to the race at Sydney's Eastern Creek Raceway. Ironically Jones is Australia's most recent F1 World Champion, in 1980, and was for many years a member of the board of the Australian Grand Prix Corporation which is trying to prevent A1 associating itself with the words "Grand Prix".

Jones said the writ was "a bit of a shame" and added that "I can't see how anyone has a stranglehold on the use of the term 'grand prix'. It is a pretty generic term. It just means big prize. We're not trying to detract from the Melbourne Grand Prix. I don't see what the hassle is."

Australian GP Corporation chairman Ron Walker said in late September that he had authorized proceedings to begin as a result of a breakdown in talks in London with A1's lawyers, although nothing more has been heard publicly from the corporation since. It claimed in its September statement that "A1's use of the phrase 'A1 Grand Prix' infringes the corporation's intellectual property rights. Accordingly AGPC has instructed its lawyers to commence proceedings to protect these rights." Grandprix.com

Mark Webber at Australian GP launch Mark Webber at Australian GP launchThe 2006 Australian Grand Prix will be officially launched at a free public event at Federation Square in Melbourne, on Monday 14 November between 12 – 2pm.

The race is the third event on the 2006 calendar after Bahrain and Malaysia and takes place on April 2nd.

F1 fans, city workers and the general public are encouraged to make their way to the launch which will showcase a number of activities that make the Grand Prix such an exciting and entertaining event.

Australia’s only current Formula One driver, Mark Webber will entertain the crowd as he signs autographs, sells tickets and provides an insight into the world of F1 and racing in his home Grand Prix.

“It’s the best Grand Prix of the year and I’m not just saying that because I’m Australian," Webber said. "I’m saying it on behalf of a lot of the other Formula One drivers who love coming to Melbourne. The atmosphere isn’t just confined to the circuit as it spills over into the streets and city over the entire event.”

Car enthusiasts will be treated to a display of motor racing vehicles. This includes the F1 Ferrari, BAR Honda and Foster’s show cars, V8 Supercars, V8 Utes, a Foster’s Kart and more. This will allow the public to get up close and personal to the cars to see what makes them some of the fastest and most powerful motor vehicles in the world. Australian GP Assoc.

Rosberg joins Webber at Williams Cosworth Rosberg joins Webber at Williams CosworthWilliams today confirmed the appointment of Nico Rosberg as a team race driver for next season. Rosberg has agreed a long term contract with the team, reflecting the commitment and confidence of both parties. His natural talent in the cockpit is equally matched by his intelligence out of it, demonstrated by his depth of technical understanding over the months spent as a test driver this season.

This quality is amply represented by acceptance to Imperial College, London, to read for an engineering degree, prior to committing to a career in motorsport. In addition, Rosberg has a depth of sporting pedigree outside of motor racing, having a keen capability in sports such as football, snow boarding, jet-skiing and tennis.

Rosberg is well adapted to the demands away from the race track. While fluent in four European languages and is also adept in managing the commercial necessities of his profession at the highest level. Despite his youth, his wealth of experience reflects the early start made by contemporary drivers and it is significant to note that Nico has recorded more race starts by the age of 20 than his father, the 1982 F1 World Champion, Keke, recorded in his entire career. zzzz

“For quite a few years, I kept a number of options open, such as continuing my education, but this announcement is the validation after ten years of racing that I have chosen the right direction," said Rosberg. "Winning the GP2 title this season, especially given the competition, was a satisfying achievement, but of course this development is the crowning glory of a great year. I am really looking forward to starting work at the end of this month and learning as much from the team as I possibly can.”

Rosberg will commence his new duties with Williams with the start of the winter test program, which re-commences on Tuesday 29 November, with the debut run of the team’s V8 Cosworth engine in Barcelona.

Nico Rosberg's biography
Date and place of birth: 27th June 1985, Wiesbaden (Germany)
Nationality: German
Place of residence: Monaco
Marital status: Single
Family: Father Keke, Mother Sina
Height: 1.78m
Weight: 69kg
Hobbies: Soccer, snowboarding, jet-skiing
First race: September ’95, Golf-Juan go-kart race
First win: ‘96 Regional Côte d’Azur mini-kart Championship

Career Highlights
1996 Regional Côte d’Azur mini-kart Champion
1997 French mini-kart Champion
1998 North American ICA Junior Karting Champion
1999 Runner-up, Italian ICA Junior Karting Championship, 4th ICA Junior European Karting Championship
2000 Runner up, Formula A European Karting Championship
2001 Super A World Karting Championship
2002 Formula BMW ADAC Champion, 9 wins
2003 F3 Euro-series, 2nd in Rookie Category, 1 win
2004 F3 Euro-series, 4th overall, 3 wins
2005 GP2 Series Champion, Official test driver for the BMW WilliamsF1 Team

Latest F1 news in brief Latest F1 news in brief
Speed and power
Fisi neared Williams ride
Ferrari test near Rome
Rubens asks for early start
Schu slams rule revolution
Pizzonia seeks 'Friday' drive
F1 kart race in Colombia
Former drivers aim F1 fire
Webber going home
Schu's an animal lover
Kimi's fortune still secret
Schu 'like a kid'
Rosberg to race - official
Racing News
Boys will be boys Boys will be boysMen, er......shall we say boys, will race anything. Short Video
Huge crowds await drivers in Mexico City Huge crowds await drivers in Mexico CityThe Mexican fans are being treated to what should be an exciting race in Mexico City this weekend - they will have the opportunity to cheer for Mexican drivers Mario Dominguez, Rodolfo Lavin, and rookie Homero Richards. Since returning here in 2002, attendance numbers for this event remain a series record with the 2003 numbers still unsurpassed. A total of 402,413 fans and a Sunday crowd of 221,011 in 2003 made the race the largest single-day road racing event in North America. In 2004, it again was the highest attended race of the season with 345,428 fans over three days. Both Servia and Bourdais enjoy the atmosphere the fans provide for the event.

“Mexico City is a great place to race in,” said Newman/Haas driver Oriol Servia who speaks Spanish, English, French and partial Italian. “It’s the biggest city in the world so there is a great energy. Champ Car set their record for attendance there and our biggest crowds of the season are there every year. It’s a great feeling to end the season on a high note there with all the fans cheering. It’s great at the start of the race when you see all the grandstands full and you go on the parade lap and you see all the fans there shouting. You can almost hear them saying your name and it’s a great feeling.”

“You’ve got it all in Mexico City,” added Servia's teammate Sebastien Bourdais. “There is a big diversity of corners between slow, medium and high speed and there are some chicanes and esses. It’s quite fast and really enjoyable. There are also big crowds so it can barely be better than it is. It’s the biggest crowd we have all season so it’s hard to improve on that.”

Mexico track hard on tires says Servia Mexico track hard on tires says Servia“The track in Mexico City is great; it’s a real road course,” said Oriol Servia ahead of this Sunday's Champ Car finale.

 “The track provides more overtaking possibilities than other places so, although qualifying is important like everywhere else, you can still have a good race if you don’t qualify well.  You need a fast car obviously like everywhere else but you need a consistent car because the track is very hard on the tires especially so if the car doesn’t work very well you’re going to kill your tires quickly. 

"You need good pit stops like every race but being the last race it’s a key factor.  At Newman/Haas pit stops are something we work a lot on and the guys always do a great job.  It feels great to be in this position and try to give the PacifiCare team the results they deserve and we will try to end the season with a win in Mexico City.”

Alternate tires in use this weekend Alternate tires in use this weekendBridgestone delivered 790 dry-condition ("slicks") and 344 wet-condition ("rains") Potenza race tires for use this weekend in Mexico City where the Champ Car World Series brings its season to a close. All were produced at the Bridgestone Technical Center in Akron, Ohio, U.S. Per Champ Car World Series regulations, Bridgestone brought two dry-tire specifications and a single wet-tire spec, broken down in the following manner:

Standard dry-condition tires: Each car receives six sets of standard slicks (24 tires) for the weekend, to use in practice, qualifying and race sessions. The standard dry-condition specification contains the midrange standard road-course compound and construction that Bridgestone employs in the series. The same spec was used earlier this season at Cleveland and Edmonton.

Alternate dry-condition tires: Each car receives two sets of alternate slicks (eight tires) to use this weekend. The alternate tires are easily identifiable by their bright red sidewalls. At least one complete set (new or used) of alternates must be used for a stint in Sunday's race, but there is no mandate to when or how long the set must be run. The construction of the alternate tire is identical to the standard slick, but the alternate tire possesses a tread compound with moderately increased grip ("softer"). While the alternate tire contains additional speed potential, it trades away some of the long-lasting durability of the standard dry-condition tires.

Wet-condition tires ("rains"): Each car receives up to four new sets of grooved-tread Potenza rain tires per weekend on road and street courses, as needed. In addition, each car may use two sets of same-spec rain tires issued at a previous event. The more durable rain tire is available this weekend.

TV News
USA TV reminders for Friday USA TV reminders for Friday
'NASCAR Live!'
Texas Motor Speedway
2:00 p.m.-2:30 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
Dickies 500
Texas Motor Speedway
4:00 p.m.-5:30 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
'NASCAR Live!'
Texas Motor Speedway
5:30 p.m.-6:00 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
O'Reilly Challenge
Texas Motor Speedway
6:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
Guest: Terry Labonte
Guest: Sterling Marlin
7:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
'NASCAR Live!'
Texas Motor Speedway
8:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED
Silverado 350
Texas Motor Speedway
9:00 p.m.-11:30 p.m. ET (Live) SPEED

For a complete listing of Friday's TV Programs, see TVRacer.com and Race Fan TV.

The role of Renault's technocenter The role of Renault's technocenterRenault's F1 involvement is not limited to Viry-Châtillon and Enstone. The Technocenter at Guyancourt is also part of the winning team. Here's how.

Renault's Guyancourt Technocentre is an ultra-modern technical base, a nerve centre for the entire Renault Group. It is where the company's newest models take shape, from the design stages, to mechanical platforms and production technologies. Since 2000, this invaluable resource has also had another mission: playing its role in the Formula 1 program.

"The aim was to provide skills in very specific technical areas according to the F1 team's needs," explains the man who started the project, Bertand Dumas. "In return, the Technocentre employees benefit from the experience of a unique working environment driven by intense competition." The program is now in its sixth year. zzzz

Didier Defrasnes is the man with day-to-day responsibility for the F1 Partnership at Guyancourt. From the 8000 Technocentre employees, 16 were dedicated to the F1 program in 2005 (10 at Enstone and 6 in Viry). "We don't want this opportunity to seem like a break in our employees' careers," he explains.

"It has to work as a springboard for them, and bring them experience and training in new areas. Our aim is to let people acquire skills using a different approach to that we have in Guyancourt, primarily thanks to shorter working cycles. These Technocentre employees work at the heart of the F1 program until they return home."

The sixteen employees collaborate on numerous programs. Among them are...

1. Optimizing combustion: internal aerodynamic calculations on the engine. The power developed by the engine passes through the quality of its combustion.

2. Chassis control systems: this work concentrates primarily on how the car can be used in a 'degraded state', when systems are not operating at 100%.

3. Vibration management: this is a sector where the Technocentre has been particularly valuable recently. The work concerns engine auxiliary components as well as driver comfort.

4. Improving quality/reliability: Guyancourt focuses on establishing working practices that will enable improved vehicle reliability.

5. Off-car software: the software used at the track, particularly those dealing with telemetry data from the car, cannot contain any bugs. Guyancourt helps fine-tune the programming.

6. Engine optimization: the mathematical tools used by Renault's Research Department assist in the search for engine performance.

7. Materials: Renault's Materials Department is often consulted in order to improve the team's database of new materials.

8. Engine reliability: two people work on monitoring the engines at the track to assess problems, or evaluate the life cycle remaining on specific components. The aim is to optimize component design, and maintain engine reliability throughout two race weekends. Renault

PCM dumps ALMS for Grand-Am PCM dumps ALMS for Grand-AmHaving stepped away from the GT1 class of the American Le Mans Series before the end of its intended campaign, Pacific Coast Motorsports ("PCM") returns to active duty this weekend with the Ventura-based squad set to make its Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series debut at the 2.786-mile Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez Circuit in Mexico City, 4th-5th November.

Saturday's 250-mile race, the fourteenth and final round of the 2005 Rolex Sports Car Series, will reunite PCM's regular driver pairing of Alex Figge and Ryan Dalziel behind the wheel of the team's all new #89 Ironclad-backed Pontiac Riley Daytona Prototype.

While the team announced its plans to run a full-time Daytona Prototype entry in 2006 back in September, they also stated their desire to contest this year's season finale in Mexico City subject to taking delivery of their Pontiac Riley.

PCM subsequently took possession of the new car just two weeks ago and the crew's tireless dedication to get up and running as quickly as possible allowed them to squeeze in two days testing at Putnam Park followed by two more days at Buttonwillow before the team's transporter was packed up and sent to the border on Saturday. zzzz

"I'm delighted we've been able to get our Daytona Prototype program together in time to debut in Mexico," enthused PCM Team Director, Tyler Tadevic. "We've worked some ridiculous hours to get this far but we need to get up to speed as quickly as possible in such a competitive category. Our participation this weekend is a real bonus and it gives us valuable track time as we look ahead to January's Rolex 24 at Daytona and the full 2006 schedule."

Tadevic continued, "We can't wait to get back to doing what PCM does best - racing! We're all excited by the level of competition in the Rolex Sports Car Series and we've put together a crack team to help us compete. I'm really pleased that we're able to extend our relationship with Ironclad as they come on board as our primary sponsor for this weekend's race. As a leader in high-end, task-specific gloves, Ironclad share's our commitment to succeed.

"Similarly, in Alex and Ryan we have a tremendous driver line-up and I'm thrilled that we have Paul Hasselgren and his engineering team working with us on our Pontiac engine program. It's been a real challenge to get the motors ready in time for Mexico but we enjoyed a productive test together at Buttonwillow."

Teaming up for the eighth time this season, Alex Figge (23) and Ryan Dalziel (23) are equally excited to make their Daytona Prototype career starts this weekend.

"I'm pumped," Figge remarked. "I wasn't sure if we'd be back in action this season so I'm thrilled to be back behind the wheel and I'm confident we'll do a good job despite our lack of track time with the Pontiac Riley. I don't think we're under any illusion about just how competitive the championship is but we've always performed well as a team and this gives us a chance to race the car in anger prior to the 'off-season'."

The Californian's team-mate, Scotland's Ryan Dalziel, is no stranger to the Rolex Sports Car Series having taken several GT-class starts throughout the year, the highlight undoubtedly a podium finish alongside his brother John back in June at Daytona International Raceway. Having seen the Daytona Prototype's up-close and personal, the Orlando-based Scot is relishing the opportunity to finally race one.

After the team's recent test Dalziel commented, "The car is a lot of fun to drive and it hasn't been given the credit it deserves. It's a very physical car and not too dissimilar to an open-wheel racer in the way that it handles. There was only so much we could do in testing before heading to Mexico. I think we're in fairly good shape but we'll be focusing on our own set of objectives. It's our first race in the category and with limited testing we're on a steep learning curve that's for sure. That said this is a great team and I'm sure we'll take a lot from the event and put it to good use ahead of Daytona."

Track News
Speedway Motorsports posts profit Speedway Motorsports posts profitRacetrack owner Speedway Motorsports Inc. said Wednesday it posted a third-quarter profit, reversing a year-ago loss that included a considerable charge, as revenue rose 12 percent.  Net income for the three months ended Sept. 30 was $4.4 million, or 10 cents per share, versus last year's loss of $4.5 million, or 10 cents per share. Fiscal 2004 results were hamstrung by a charge of $7.3 million, or 16 cents per share, related to a litigation settlement. Excluding that charge, Speedway earned 6 cents per share in the year-ago period.
NASCAR Fans Stay Connected With In Car Audio NASCAR Fans Stay Connected With In Car AudioNASCAR.COM announced today the launch of In Car Audio for mobile phones.  The new technology, which has recently been rolled-out to major United States wireless carriers, enables NASCAR fans to listen to in car audio, as well as audio clips of their favorite NASCAR drivers on their mobile phone during NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series races.

This real-time In Car Audio application is the latest in a series of applications that provides NASCAR fans unparalleled access to the sport and its stars.  Developed by Digital Orchid, the industry’s leading innovator in the development, management, and distribution of branded real time wireless applications, In Car Audio lets race fans listen to live, in-car audio from some of the sport’s most popular drivers, including Mark Martin, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., Kasey Kahne, Ryan Newman, Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, and Kurt Busch.  In addition, race fans can listen to weekly audio clips from the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup, with interviews and commentary available on a data-enabled phone.  In Car Audio is available as part of the NASCAR.COM To Go subscriber package that is sold through local wireless retailers.

“In car audio and audio clips are the ultimate tool for the NASCAR fan,” said Chris Duggan, president of Digital Orchid.  “The depth of information and entertainment is astonishing with audio content, and racing fans can now feel connected to their driver during the race.” zzzz

The release of In Car Audio for die-hard NASCAR fans follows closely on the heels of the release of award winning NASCAR.COM To Go with PitCommandä  which was launched to the public earlier in the year.  PitCommand was the first wireless application to offer NASCAR fans access to real time race information using telemetry and GPS technology delivered directly to the cellular handset.  In addition, NASCAR.COM also offers NASCAR wallpapers, ring-tones and video clip highlights, which can be viewed on video capable handsets.     

“With today’s evolving mobile technology landscape, we believe that great wireless applications are key to continued growth in the distribution of branded entertainment,” stated Scott Bailey, Vice President/General Manager of NASCAR.COM.  “Adding this In Car Audio application is the latest unique way our customers can participate in the NASCAR experience. This takes what is available at the track and allows our fans to follow the action anywhere they go.”

Racing News
An Evening with Andy Granatelli An Evening with Andy Granatelli Thursday, November 10, 2005, 6:30 p.m.

Join us for a supercharged evening with the legendary Andy Granatelli, “Mister 500.” No words can describe the dynamic life of Granatelli, a racer, designer, automotive expert, businessman and promotional genius. Best known for his technically innovative entries into the Indianapolis 500, including the banned turbine-powered cars of the late '60s, Granatelli made countless contributions to motorsports and to the automotive industry during his long and illustrious career.

Granatelli is known for making “STP” a household name and has been inducted into 21 Halls of Fame in twelve different categories including automotive, business and philanthropic entities. In addition, he is recognized as a generous philanthropist and raises millions of dollars each year for various local and national charities.

The tribute evening will include a buffet dinner and film program. Plus, Dave McClelland, noted motorsports announcer, will conduct on-stage interviews with Granatelli and some of his fellow drivers and crew.

Special guests include George Follmer, Vince Granatelli, Dan Gurney, Parnelli Jones, Joe Leonard, Art Malone, Paula Murphy, and Danny Sullivan. You’ll be captivated by stories of Granatelli’s daring speed attempts and the racing innovations that he has brought to the world. Great racing cars will also be on display.

Reservations are $100 per person for Museum members
(members may purchase up to two tickets at this price);
$125 per person for nonmembers.
Price includes a buffet dinner, soft drinks and parking.
A cash bar will be available.  zzzz

Mail your payment to: Granatelli Tribute, Petersen Automotive Museum, 6060 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036-3605.
Credit card payments may be faxed to 323-930-6642.
Tickets will not be mailed—your reservations will be held at the door.

Don’t miss this historic event—Make your reservations today!

An Evening with Andy Granatelli is generously sponsored by Ford Motor Company.  For additional information, call 323-964-6359 or visit the Museum’s website www.petersen.org

Wheldon nominated for 2 awards Wheldon nominated for 2 awardsDan Wheldon, winner of the 89th Indianapolis 500 and the 2005 Indy Racing League (IRL) IndyCar Series Championship for Andretti Green Racing, has been nominated for two prestigious Autosport Awards - International Racing Driver of the Year and British Competition Driver of the Year. Wheldon will attend the annual Autosport Awards dinner and reception on Sunday, December 4 at the Grosvenor House hotel in London.

"The Autosport Awards are a highlight of my year and it's a real honor to be nominated by such a well-respected motorsports magazine," said Wheldon. "It's always nice being back in London with my racing friends and my family, and I'm hoping I have a chance to get on-stage and thank all the people that made my 2005 IndyCar season such a success. I couldn't do what I do without a lot of support."
Champ Car inks deal with Sherwin-Williams Champ Car inks deal with Sherwin-WilliamsSherwin-Williams uses the term ‘Cover The Earth’ in its corporate logo, making it a natural fit for the Champ Car World Series, which spans the globe in bringing top-flight open-wheel racing to fans around the world.

Today at the Specialty Equipment Market Associations (SEMA) show in Las Vegas, the two companies announced a three-year partnership that will see the Cleveland-based Sherwin-Williams company serve as a sponsor and a commercial partner for both the Bridgestone Presents The Champ Car World Series Powered by Ford and the Champ Car Atlantic Championship.

Sherwin-Williams will become the Official Automotive Finishes of the Champ Car World Series and the Atlantic Series, as well as the associate sponsor of the Champ Car Fast Lap Pace Car Program. In addition, the company will initiate the Sherwin-Williams Design Award, which will honor the Champ Car and Atlantic teams with the best paint schemes and color designs.

 “Sherwin-Williams Automotive Finishes is thrilled to partner with Champ Car – where the right team and preparation are critical to winning the race,” said Thomas Hablitzel, Vice President, Marketing, Sherwin-Williams Automotive Finishes Corp.  “As a new member of the team, we’re going to add color and excitement to the 2006 World Series with interactive fan contests and new team paint schemes.  Now you’ll be able to see firsthand – it’s all about the finish.”

Sherwin-Williams will provide its new Planet Color products to all the Champ Car teams and will also provide paints, finishes and associated products for all of the vehicles in the Champ Car Fast Lap Pace Car Program. The ambassadors of the Champ Car World Series, the Fast Lap cars are among the most visible machines in the paddock as they lead the field of Champ Cars and Atlantic machines around the courses of the world for every race of the calendar.

“We are looking forward to seeing the new look that Sherwin-Williams is sure to bring to the Champ Car World Series,” said Champ Car President Steve Johnson. “We are especially pleased that this new agreement covers not only Champ Car, but also the Atlantics and the Fast Lap Pace Car team as well. We look forward to a long and prosperous relationship with Sherwin-Williams.” Champ Car

IRL loosens up testing restrictions IRL loosens up testing restrictionsGiving its teams more flexibility to choose when and where they test, the Indy Racing League will eliminate its restriction on team testing in the IRL IndyCar® Series beginning Jan. 1, 2006.

Under the new testing policy, each IndyCar Series team will be allowed a maximum of three private testing days. In order to level the playing field, teams with more than one IndyCar Series entry will be counted as a single entrant and limited to three testing days.

The new testing policy reduces testing to eight days from 12 in 2005.

"By allowing our teams to test, we place the value of testing back in the hands of our teams," IRL President and Chief Operating Officer Brian Barnhart said. "The teams have the flexibility to choose when and where they test, which will help maintain the competitive balance of the IndyCar Series as well as allow them to contain the costs of racing by reducing the number of testing days we will have in 2006." zzzz

The new policy also includes a provision that will aid in the development of drivers from the IRL Menards Infiniti Pro Series. Full-time IndyCar Series entrants that also field full-time entries in the Menards Infiniti Pro Series can earn up to three additional testing days for each Menards Infiniti Pro Series car, up to a maximum of two Menards Infiniti Pro Series cars.

For every four Menards Infiniti Pro Series races a team participates in, the team will receive one bonus test day for the IndyCar Series car. The Menards Infiniti Pro Series driver must be in the car for at least half of the bonus test day.

"The bonus testing program benefits the IndyCar Series driver and the Menards Infiniti Pro Series driver," Barnhart said. "The Menards Infiniti Pro Series driver gets the opportunity to gain valuable seat time in an IndyCar Series car and get additional feedback from the team."

In addition to the private tests, the Indy Racing League, which has sanctioned Open Tests since the fall of 1995, will sanction Open Tests for the IndyCar Series on the road course (2 days) and oval (1 day) at Homestead-Miami Speedway (March 1-6) and Richmond International Raceway (June 22). The Richmond test will be the first Open Test held in conjunction with a race event weekend.

Engine manufacturers Honda and Toyota will be allowed a single day of manufacturer testing for full-time teams that use their engines.

Under the 2006 testing rules, the private tests, bonus tests and engine manufacturer tests can take place at any IRL-approved facility except the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Since 2004, teams have not been allowed to conduct private tests as testing has been limited to Indy Racing League-sanctioned Open Tests and three engine manufacturer test days.

The Menards Infiniti Pro Series will offer teams five Open Test dates - Homestead-Miami road course (March 4), Homestead-Miami oval (March 6), Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval and The Milwaukee Mile (June 14). Menards Infiniti Pro Series teams will be permitted five private test days in 2006, an increase from four in 2005.

A look at the new IndyCar Series testing format vs. the current testing formats:

Type of Testing 2004-2005
Testing Format 2006 Testing Format
Open Testing Four (8 days total) Two (4 days)
Entrant Testing Not allowed Three Days
Engine Manufacturer Testing Three days One day
Bonus Testing Not available Up to six days

NASCAR licensing agreement with Harlequin Enterprises NASCAR licensing agreement with Harlequin EnterprisesNASCAR today announced a licensing agreement with Harlequin Enterprises in which Harlequin will publish women’s fiction titles with plotlines centering on NASCAR and featuring the NASCAR brand on the covers. The debut title will be “In the Groove” by Pamela Britton, which will be released in late January to coincide with the Daytona 500 NASCAR
Zanardi to appear on popular sports show Zanardi to appear on popular sports showAutoRacing1.com has learned that former Champ Car driver Alex Zanardi will appear on the November 28th episode of the "Best Damn Sports Show Period" on Fox Sports.  They were closed for production but were so glad to have him that they opened up again.  Check local TV listing for show time (Show normally airs 10:30 PM).
Racing News
Mockett.com and a Who’s Who in American Racing Support Team USA Scholarship Mockett.com and a Who’s Who in American Racing Support Team USA ScholarshipA veritable Who’s Who in American racing, representing virtually every facet of the sport, has lent its support and credence to the Team USA Scholarship, which, in its 16th year, will give 17-year-old rising star J.R. Hildebrand of Sausalito, Calif., the opportunity to contest the upcoming Formula Palmer Audi Autumn Trophy in England.

The series will comprise three races on each of two weekends: at Snetterton this coming weekend, November 5/6, and at Brands Hatch on November 12/13.

Doug Mockett & Company, a Torrance, Calif.-based producer and supplier of "Fine Architectural Hardware For Your Fine Furniture," will remain as the program’s primary sponsor for the second straight year.

A variety of teams and drivers representing the Champ Car World Series, the Indy Racing League, the Grand American Rolex Sports Car Series and the American Le Mans Series, plus one of the world’s most highly respected suppliers of auto racing safety equipment, Sparco USA, are among additional Scholarship supporters. zzzz

Two Champ Car teams, Dale Coyne Racing and Mi-Jack Conquest Racing (owned by former Indy Lights champion driver Eric Bachelart and Mike Lanigan), are contributing to the program along with 1996 title winner Jimmy Vasser, who since claiming the inaugural award in 1990 has become one of the Scholarship’s staunchest supporters, and 2001 Scholarship winner (and 2004 Champ Car Rookie of the Year) A.J. Allmendinger.

Buddy Rice, who won a Team USA Scholarship in 1996 and went on to win the 2004 Indianapolis 500, represents the IRL along with 1991 Scholarship winner Bryan Herta, the winner at Michigan this year.

Fellow former Scholarship winners Tony Ave (1992), Memo Gidley (1995), Paul Edwards (1998/’99), Andy Lally (1999) and Joey Hand (2000) are now plying their trade to excellent effect in the Rolex Grand-Am series and have also pledged their support. (Incidentally, Lally will be seeking to clinch his second Grand-Am championship in as many years this coming weekend in Mexico City.) Also contributing from the sports car ranks is Bryan Sellers, who joined Allmendinger in winning a Team USA Scholarship in 2001.

"I’m extremely grateful for the support of people like Doug Mockett and all these former winners – who know first-hand how much their careers have benefited in the past," notes Team USA Scholarship founder and veteran auto racing writer/broadcaster Jeremy Shaw. "We’re still looking to complete the funding for this program. A modest investment can reap big dividends, and help make it possible to continue the development of young American talent."

"Winning the Scholarship was a huge help to me," declares Allmendinger. "It enabled me to make a lot of connections that really helped me get to where I am today, and it’s a great feeling to be able to be involved in giving a similar opportunity to someone like J.R."

"One of the great things in life is to be able to help others," adds Mockett, an accomplished vintage car racer and arch enthusiast who in recent years also has played a pivotal role in furthering the careers of both Edwards and Joe D’Agostino, who won a Team USA Scholarship in ‘03 and is now working his way up the auto racing ladder in England.

"In no other sport do the competitors need assistance like they do in motorsports. You don’t just need a mitt and bat, or tennis racket, or set of golf clubs, or set of running shoes to display your talent. You need a very, very expensive piece of machinery. If you’re not wealthy, climbing the motor racing ladder can become virtually impossible. And immensely frustrating.  So it is a pleasure to be able to assist up-and-coming drivers like J.R.," continues Mockett. "It’s just a small step, just a little help along the way."

RCR Shuffles Cup Series Crew Chief Lineup RCR Shuffles Cup Series Crew Chief LineupTwo of Richard Childress Racing’s (RCR) NASCAR Cup Series teams will swap crew chiefs next week in preparation for the 2006 season.

Scott Miller, current crew chief on the No. 07 Jack Daniel’s team, will assume the crew chief position on the No. 31 Cingular Wireless team with driver Jeff Burton for the final two races this season and next year. Kevin Hamlin, current crew chief on the No. 31 Cingular Wireless team, will move to the No. 07 Jack Daniel’s team for the rest of this season with driver Dave Blaney. He will be assisted by Gil Martin who, it was announced in October, will be the crew chief for the team next year with new driver Clint Bowyer. Hamlin has been offered another position within the RCR organization at the conclusion of this season.

“We’re making these moves next week to get a head start on 2006,” said Richard Childress, president and CEO of RCR. “We had already announced that Gil was going to be the Jack Daniel’s team crew chief for 2006 so it made sense to get him running as quickly as possible. We have put Scott Miller and Jeff Burton together on the Cingular Wireless team in an effort to take the success the team has had this season to the next level. Kevin Hamlin has been a valuable part of RCR for many years and we look forward to him continuing to contribute to our success in the future.”

Martin will remain as the crew chief for Bowyer and the No. 2 ACDelco team in their quest for the 2005 NASCAR Busch Series championship. Jeremy Bullins, the team’s engineer who will also move to the No. 07 Jack Daniel’s team next season, will assist Hamlin and Martin for the balance of the season.

“This in no way will take away from the effort Clint, Gil and the ACDelco team will give toward winning the Busch championship,” said Childress. “They’ve still got a good shot at it and Gil has great guys working for him on both teams so we won’t let him get overloaded from either direction.”

Ferrari V8 testing continues Ferrari V8 testing continuesFerrari were back on the testing trail again today at Vallelunga in what is the team's second day of running this week. The program for the day centered on Bridgestone tire development, carried out by Felipe Massa at the wheel of an F2004 and Luca Badoer driving an F2005. Bridgestone of course will be preparing for tires that do not have to last the entire race distance in 2006 as recent rule changes revealed that tire changes will be allowed again next year.

Badoer completed 70 laps with a best time of 1:14.901s while Massa completed 60 laps with a best time of 1:15.311s. Ferrari did not detail whether the F2004 was powered by the V8 engine as was the case last week, or the 2005-specification V10 powerplant.

Last Thursday Massa recorded a 1.13.007s best at the 4.085KM circuit. Testing continues at this circuit tomorrow, once again with Badoer and Massa. Ferrari

Zanardi says Champ Car a better formula than F1 Zanardi says Champ Car a better formula than F1"The truth is that in F1 they convince themselves of being the best. Maybe it's true, but this doesn't interest the public much: to see cars that do a lap five seconds faster than any other is irrelevant, if the spectacle on the track is what it is," former Champ Car and F1 driver Alex Zanardi told Autosprint magazine.

"On top of that, the budget for a [Champ Car] team is only one or two percent of that of an F1 team: with five/six million dollars per year you can run a decent team and with 10-15 you can be at the highest level.

"In my opinion this is the question: is it logical to race in this Formula One, where if you don't spend a crazy amount of money you can do absolutely nothing, or wouldn't it make a lot more sense to have an infinitely more accessible and open F1, where teams without the colossal resources of the big constructors can also fight for race victories?

"At the end of the day the answer is philosophical: to keep talking about the right wing to help overtaking is useless. What's the point of keep saying 'speed is money; how fast you wanna go?'"

Fittipaldi critical of new F1 qualifying rules Fittipaldi critical of new F1 qualifying rules"I kept failing to understand one-lap qualifying. It was created for oval racing and it made sense there. When they decided to use that system in F1 I wondered why," Fittipaldi, now involved in the A1 GP series, told Autosprint magazine.

"Of the new format I haven't understood a thing, especially the reason why some cars will be able to re-fuel and others won't. I only see that in A1 GP we race in a traditional way, without exotic wings and nevertheless there is lots of overtaking.

"As for the tires it's right to have them changed again during the races: it's certainly something that improves safety."

Racing News
Ford sues NC firm over Racing Device Ford sues NC firm over Racing DeviceFord Motor Co. sued a North Carolina equipment supplier Tuesday, accusing the company of stealing trade secrets, breach of contract and trademark infringement. The case centers on the Ford Racing Kinematics Rig - a device Ford says it developed to collect, process and display data from the chassis systems of NASCAR race cars. According to a complaint filed in federal court in Detroit Tuesday, Ford's racing division contracted with L&H Technologies of Charlotte, N.C., last year to produce the device for Ford's exclusive use. As part of that contract, Ford says it provided L&H with technical details for the device and worked with the supplier to develop the device. Ford also says it provided L&H with components for the rigs and loaned the supplier Ford Racing cars to test the equipment. In its lawsuit, Ford says L&H produced the units for Ford as requested, but then began offering the same device to other NASCAR teams, using Ford's logo in its marketing materials. Detroit News
Memo Gidley's Mexican heritage Memo Gidley's Mexican heritageMemo Gidley is a fast man with two countries.  Born in Mexico to American parents, he spent his early childhood on a boat moored at a La Paz shipyard.  Today he is a top racing driver with many fans in both countries and is looking to score his first win for the Finlay Motorsports team in Saturday’s Grand American Rolex Series season finale during the Gran Premio de México at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez.

Returning for the first time in several years to the country of his birth, Gidley has fond memories of his youth and is proud to hold citizenship in both the United States and Mexico (Pictured right: Memo Gidley age 12 on the family's fishing boat in the Sea of Cortez):

My parents first sailed to La Paz in the early 1960's in a 28 foot wooden boat called the Tia Mia. My father and mother operated a salmon buying business in Sausalito, California, and the season was closed during the winter months so they were able to take time off and sailed down to La Paz. 

Once they arrived, my parents found it so beautiful and the people so friendly that they decided to make it their second home. They left the boat on a mooring in front of the shipyard and flew back to the Bay Area.  For several years they returned every winter, either flying back or driving and taking the ferry over from Mazatlan.  Some of the time they were in Baja was spent exploring the Gulf.  In fact the year that my sister was born, they were up in some remote bay when my mother went into labor. They named my sister Maria Guadalupe because my mother wanted her to always remember that she was born in Mexico and was “una Pazena con patas saladas” (born in La Paz with salty feet). zzzz

By the time my mother was pregnant with me, four years later, my parents had sold the Tia Mia and bought a bigger sailboat, the Yo Ho Ho.  My mother and sisters flew to La Paz where they rented a house near the beach while my father and some friends were getting the Yo Ho Ho ready to make the trip down.  The boat did not make it to La Paz in time for my birth, so I was born in the military clinic in town.  My mother named me Jose Guillermo in honor of my parents' good friend, Jose Abaroa of the shipyard. 

When the Yo Ho Ho finally arrived in La Paz, I was about six months old. My father anchored the boat out in front of the house and my sisters used to sail me around in our little sailing dingy.  One day my father forgot to put my life preserver on me before we went out in the boat, and the wind kicked up while we were out there by ourselves. The waves were breaking over the sides of the dingy and my parents were frantic as they watched the boat getting farther and farther from shore. My sisters and I were in danger of capsizing and drowning, but luckily some boys in a canoe saw what was happening and paddled out to rescue us.  

While we went cruising on the Yo Ho Ho, my mother had a unique method of washing diapers. She would tied them on a line and let them drag behind the boat. When we changed tack she claimed the diapers were in the "rinse cycle." After they were "washed" she tied them on the halyards to dry.

Our diet when I was young was mainly fish. My father and mother traded fish hooks for lobster, shrimp, clams, and fish and we also fished ourselves from the boat.  I didn't know what a hamburger was until later in life and I still prefer fish.

While we lived in La Paz, my sisters went to the nearby school and played with the many kids in the neighborhood, becoming fluent in Spanish. My mother also spoke fairly good Spanish and continued to study it, but my father was not a good student. He communicated mainly with gestures and by tacking an "o" on the end of every word like something out of a TV sitcom.

When I was about two years old my parents and my sisters and I left Mexico and sailed back up the coast to Sausalito.  My father wanted to get back into commercial fishing and my mother planned to go back to school to get her teaching credential.  From then on I was raised on the boat in the San Francisco Bay area.

Although I haven't been back to La Paz for many years, my father and mother never stopped spending time there.  When my father retired he pulled a trailer down to La Paz and camped on the piece of land that belongs to my sister Lupe.  He died about five years ago.  My mother makes frequent trips to the La Paz area to see her many Mexican friends and to enjoy the culture and the weather.

After the race this weekend, my mother and I are flying to La Paz for five days before going home.  I'm looking forward to seeing the place where I was born and meeting all our friends.  I am also hoping to do some mountain biking and some sailing and maybe some karting.  I intend to eat a lot of fish tacos too. 

My experience of being born in Mexico was great for many reasons.  First, even though I was obviously a Gringo (with my blond hair and blue eyes), the Mexican people accepted my entire family into their community; we were never treated as outsiders. The other thing I learned was that even though most of our Mexican friends lived a very modest lifestyle with very little money, they would always go out of their way to help other people.

I admire the Mexican people because of the quality time they spend with their family and friends and the fun they have doing it.  I have always enjoyed my time racing in Mexico.  It’s also really fun to see my many Mexican fans and I’m happy when they point at me and call me the "the Mexican Gringo".

New rules won't help Ferrari says Bernie New rules won't help Ferrari says BernieSome say the new F1 rules to allow tire changes again were enacted to help Bridgestone and Ferrari, who did not fare too well with this year's 1-tire rule. Bernie Ecclestone dismisses that notion.

"Unfortunately, the regulations won't be able to help him. Unfortunately," Ecclestone told Autosprint magazine. "In truth I don't know what the wishes of each team are," Ecclestone added. "I can only say that, thanks to these regulations, both tire manufacturers will now have to devise new compounds and constructions to best compensate for the loss of (engine) power."

Barrichello to drive Honda V10 before V8 Barrichello to drive Honda V10 before V8Rubens Barrichello can't drive the BAR Honda car until January 1, 2006 but then he will first drive the car with the V10 engine in a development version of the 2005 car before he will test the 2006 V8 car. "We'll continue to run the V10s with our younger drivers and initially Rubens will drive our V10 car so he gets some sense of the status of the team," team principal Nick Fry said. "After that, though, all the focus will be on the V8. On the technical front there's clearly a huge amount to be done to ensure the new engine is both powerful and reliable - that's going to take a huge amount of effort between now and the beginning of next season."

"From a pure car perspective, because the V8 is a bit smaller, it helps the aerodynamics a little bit but, other than that, it's very much business as usual," he added. "From the fans point of view, the V8s do make a slightly different noise but they still sound like proper racing cars! They'll be a little bit slower but, frankly, I don't think anyone will notice a huge difference - the engines are still going to produce in excess of 700bhp. While the cars may not be quite as brutally fast, hopefully we're going to have some very good racing. 

Industry News
Skoda beats Porsche, BMW and Mercedes in top car poll Skoda beats Porsche, BMW and Mercedes in top car pollSkoda - once the laughing stock of the car industry - has beaten Porsche, BMW and Jaguar in a poll of the UK's best motors. The Czech firm came second to Lexus in a list of top manufacturers. Porsche, Jaguar and BMW were eighth, ninth and 10th in the makers' league while Mercedes was a lowly 32nd. Skoda also had three motors in the top ten models - with the Superb, Octavia and Fabia in fourth, fifth and ninth places.

A total of 159 cars featured in the BBC Top Gear magazine satisfaction survey of 76,000 UK readers. It revealed that French cars seemed to have lost their va-va-voom - with Peugeot, Renault and Citroen all in the bottom four in the makers' list.

The top model was the sporty Honda S2000, with the Lexus IS200/300 second and the Lexus RX third.

The worst car was the Peugeot 807, followed by the Peugeot 307, the Renault Espace and the Renault Laguna. The readers' favorite manufacturer was Lexus - with Skoda, Honda, Mazda and Toyota making up the rest of the top five. Peugeot took 36th and last place, with Fiat 35th, Renault 34th and Citroen 33rd. [Editor's Note: This article fails to mention that Skoda is just another name in the Volkswagen AG group. What that means is that Skoda cars are basically Audis or Volkswagens with a very slightly different body shape. We wouldn't relate the image of the old Cold War Skoda to today's Skoda.]

Industry News
Big 3 see sales slump Big 3 see sales slumpThe Big Three US carmakers, General Motors, Ford Motor and DaimlerChrysler, announced huge declines in domestic sales in October after a year of giving heavy subsidies to keep buyers in showrooms.

While Japanese rivals nearly all produced sales rises in the US market, General Motors posted a 23 percent decline from a year ago to 257,623 vehicles. Ford said its October sales were down 26 percent to 199,847. DaimlerChrysler sales were not as bad, but still fell three percent to 183,163 cars and trucks.

"Although a slowdown after the record sales of the last several months was expected, October was a difficult month for us and the industry," said Mark LaNeve, head of GM North America sales.

Ford attributed the fall to customers having already taken advantage of discount pricing that bolstered sales during the summer months.

Dealers for the Big Three were offering discounts of about 3,000 dollars a car over many months to keep up sales figures.

Some analysts say the decline was inevitable and will be good for the Detroit carmakers.

"Manufacturers are finally beginning to see returns on their efforts to lower incentives," said Jane Liu, vice president of data analysis for the Edmunds.com auto website.

"There will be some sales sacrificed in the short run, but this trend is good for the entire industry in the long term." More....

Owners question cost of new cars Owners question cost of new carsTomorrow is coming for NASCAR. It's just a matter of when.

Series officials tweak and test the sport's so-called car of tomorrow with the hope of debuting it at Talladega next fall. The key question for teams, though, is what NASCAR will do for 2007. Will this new car be phased in or will it be the only version allowed for all races?

That issue, as much as what the cars look like, worries some teams. As teams tested the new car Monday at Atlanta Motor Speedway, they also were trying to gauge NASCAR's position on the vehicle's introduction.

Richie Gilmore, vice president of motorsports at Dale Earnhardt Inc., says forcing teams to switch to the new car for all 2007 races would prove too costly.

"I don't think our budget could take that,'' Gilmore said. "We don't have enough funding for '07 to run our existing car and then to build the car of tomorrow. It would have to be spread out over 2007.''

Gilmore estimates it would cost $3.5 million per team to make the switch for all 2007 races. That would be $7 million for Dale Earnhardt Inc., which has two full-time teams. The figure could reach $10.5 million if the organization has a third full-time team.

Not everyone, though, is convinced that the cost is prohibitive.

"We're not looking at those figures,'' said car owner Kyle Petty. "I've heard [$3.5 million per team] quoted by everybody, so it's more like a Republican or Democratic bullet point, that's something that everybody is espousing that exact same number. Everybody is lying right now because you're jockeying for position.''  More at Roanoke Times

Q and A with Sebastien Bourdais Q and A with Sebastien BourdaisSebastien Bourdais heads into this weekend's race in Mexico City as the 2005 Champ Car World Series Champion. He clinched his second consecutive CCWS title in Surfers Paradise on October 23rd, becoming just the fifth driver in series history to win back-to-back championships (Rick Mears [1981-1982] , Bobby Rahal [1986-1987], Alex Zanardi [1997-1998] and Gil de Ferran [2000-2001]). Bourdais, who won the Mexico City race in 2004 talked about the upcoming weekend, the new car from Panoz and his experience in the Crown Royal IROC series.

Sebastien Bourdais No. 1 McDonalds/Newman-Haas Racing Ford Lola How does it feel going into the Mexico City Race as the defending polesitter, race winner and 2005 series champion? "It's pretty cool, there is no pressure. We are going to try and win the race. Quite a few people are going to be trying to finish well and show what they were not able to do earlier this year. I don't expect it too be easy. Mexico City is a great track and we did well last year so it would be good to be able to repeat."

With all of the support races in Mexico how does the track surface change during the weekend? "For the past two seasons, we have had no problems. Mexico is really dusty and all that, but the track is a beautiful course. It has a bit of everything and it's just a great road course. The only thing that makes it really hard is the altitude. We make so much downforce that the cars are sliding a lot and it's a challenge to balance the car properly, so that's always a tough thing. But other than that, it's a great venue with a lot of people."

How do the fans in Mexico compare to those in Canada or here in the United States? "In Canada we have great venues and the U.S. we have the Long Beach and Denver races with very good crowds. The Mexico race is just unbelievable, they have the largest attendance of the race weekend and you can definitely see it. It's just floods and floods of people." zzzz

With Champ Car going global how important is it to get more engine and chassis suppliers into the series? DO You hear some people label the series as Formula Super Ford? "We'll we like that. We like that, but yeah, right now I don't really know what the engine situation is going to be like. We have a great package that is very powerful and very reliable. It's extremely cost efficient. So I think everybody loves the engine package. I think it would be quite a mistake right now to change it. The fact that it's also inexpensive on the chassis side is good. It's true that Champ Car has been involved with Lola for many years but I guess every relationship has to come to an end. I guess Panoz has come in with a better offer and I'm sure that they will do just fine and provide a strong, good car. If the cost is going to be significantly down, like we expect, it will be a huge help for everybody. Hopefully we can get more cars and have an even better show"

DID CHAMP CAR CONSULT WITH THE DRIVERS AND TEAMS BEFORE THEY MADE A DECISION ON THE 2007 CHASSIS? "The guidelines were discussed in small groups and we had our input on things with the series technical director.  The technical director has to do what he thinks is best. If you listen to people you are going to have 50 answers and they will all be different. Definitely you need to have a strong technical director who knows what needs to be done and which way we want to go."

Last Weekend you wrapped up your last race in the IROC SERIES at Atlanta. A lot of good things were said about you by Mark Martin and Dave Marcus. How does that feel to receive accolades from veterans in the series? The IROC series was extremely different than what I was used to. I think I was able to provide very accurate information and feedback to the people I was working with. I worked with the guys on how to improve the cars in traffic. I think they really appreciated my comments and I had a great time. Dave Marcus is quite a character. With Mark Martin, I think it was just a lot of respect from each other. He is a really experienced guy whose opinion was important to listen to. I was a little surprised that they were so high on me. It can't hurt and it just makes you feel very good to know some people appreciate what you are doing.

OF THE FOUR IROC TRACKS WHAT TRACK WAS THE MOST CHALLENGING? "Of the four it was definitely Richmond. It's a track that you really have to drive. It was a bit disappointing, because in testing I did well there. I had to go to a test with Newman-Haas and when I returned the car never felt like it had in practice. So basically I was just running around not being able to be a contender. It was a bit frustrating but sometimes things just don't go the way you would like."

The Ford Five - Week 8 of the Chase for the Championship The Ford Five - Week 8 of the Chase for the Championship
Female racer slams Danica Female racer slams DanicaI have followed your career since your days in karting. Being a former open-wheel competitor who started racing at the age of 40, I am, like you, an avid motorsports enthusiast. I am also an attractive five-foot-five, 115-pound blonde female who has been fortunate to enjoy many types of racing, has won rookie awards and won my first karting championship at the age of 41 as the lone female competitor. My point is I have an understanding of racing and what it takes to be a winner. And as much as I have enjoyed watching your career grow, your actions this season, both on and off the track, have disgusted me to the point that I am thoroughly embarrassed for you.

When you joined the IRL, I had high hopes that you would bring to motorsports what had been lacking for years – a talented, competent female racer capable of consistent top-10 finishes. You were attractive, fast and had spunk. Unfortunately, you have used those talents in such a fashion as to jeopardize the very thing you were after. First, there was the sleazy photo layout, and then it was the tasteless commercials. But your tantrum with Mr. Lazier last weekend was the final straw. I agree with you that he should have been removed from the circuit a long time ago – in my opinion he is just a crash waiting to happen, as his record shows. But if you felt the need to chastise him, it should have been done in the pits, in the trailer, and not in the public light, for eyes and ears of all ages to witness. Part of your responsibility as a professional athlete is to set an example for those wishing to follow in your footsteps, particularly young girls. Your behavior was nothing short of childish, selfish, immature, inappropriate and totally unacceptable, whether you did indeed smack him or not and regardless of what reason you felt justified it. As racers, we cannot control the emotions we feel, but we had darn well better be able to control our reactions to them. Everything you have accomplished this season went out the window with your irrational reaction, including any respect you may have earned from the public, fellow racers, and, more importantly, your fan base. I truly hope you use this off-season to your benefit. Take some anger management training, enlist the help of a good media coach and make a conscious decision as to what it is you really want to be when you grow up – a pin-up girl or a race-car driver. If you want to be taken seriously as a racer, you can’t have it both ways. And remember two things. Respect among your fellow competitors and the public has to be earned; it is not a given. And there is no “I” in the word “team.” Good luck next season, Danica. Something tells me you are going to need it. J. Bond, Dallas, Texas

Gordon kicks the habit Gordon kicks the habitJeff Gordon recently took on a new sponsor Nicorette, a stop-smoking product.  Gordon, an avid poker player, is linking his charitable foundation to a series of fundraising poker tournaments organized by Harrah’s Entertainment. The Poker Classic Finale comes next March as part of race-week activities at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. NSSN
Looking back: The first 100 percent Renault win Looking back: The first 100 percent Renault winOn 1 July, 26 years ago, a 100% Renault car won a Formula 1 race for the first time. Here are some memories of an historic day…

Renault’s first steps in Formula 1 were hard work, back in 1977. There were plenty of all-nighters, lots of strong coffee, mechanical failures and constant problem-solving during those first few months for the company at motorsport’s highest level. But even now, some of the same philosophies are still in place – and the driving spirit for the Renault F1 Team can be traced back a quarter of a century…

After two learning years, Renault introduced a much more competitive machine part way through the 1979 season. The year’s racing was dominated by the explosion of ‘ground effect’ – a phenomenon which had been pioneered by Lotus with their 78 and 79 cars the previous year. zzzz

The concept used sliding skirts on the edge of the sidepods to create a vacuum beneath the cars, which literally sucked them to the track and increased cornering grip. Every F1 design office latched onto the concept for 1979, and nine of the fifteen teams were using it come the following year. What’s more, this was the first season that Renault fielded a two-car team: stalwart Jean-Pierre Jabouille was partnered by René Arnoux and together, they defended the Renault colors around the globe.
At Kyalami in South Africa, Jabouille took Renault’s first pole position – but did so in the old RS01, and without ground effect! In fact, the Michelin tires were working fantastically well at the traction heavy circuit, and compensated for the aerodynamic deficit.

What’s more, the high altitude circuit meant the turbo engine sacrificed less horsepower than its rivals: the French unit was pumping out 460 bhp while its direct rival, the V8 Cosworth, produced just 410. However, a wet race cost Jabouille any chance of victory. But it had shown the team that there was light at the end of the tunnel…

In Spain, the new RS10 made its appearance in the hands of Jabouille – and the ground effect Renault was born. The car was better balanced, and faster. Arnoux had to wait until Monaco to get his hands on one, but which time the engine had been fitted with twin turbo technology. The aim was to reduce the throttle lag, by giving each bank of cylinders its own turbocharger. The result was a gain of 1200 rpm – and the RS10 became a contender for race wins…

Several weeks later at Dijon-Prenois, the team arrived feeling confident. And they were proved right when less than two years after their Grand Prix debut, Renault took victory. Jean-Pierre Jabouille took the spoils at the end of a tactical race: worried about tire wear, the Frenchman allowed Gilles Villeneuve’s Ferrari to take an early lead but, on lap 47, the Renault got back on terms and took the lead… for good.

This performance brought the team a welcome boost, and things continued to get better. Jabouille took another pole position in Great Britain, and once more in Germany. Arnoux did the same in Austria and Holland. Finally, in Italy, the two yellow cars annexed the front row. The team’s 26 point total was enough for sixth place in the constructors’ championship, just ahead of… McLaren. Some things never change! Press Release Renault

Industry news
ISC signs sponsorship agreement with Texas Instruments ISC signs sponsorship agreement with Texas InstrumentsInternational Speedway Corp. has signed a multiyear sponsorship agreement with Texas Instruments DLP Products.  As a result, DLP HDTV will become the "Official High Definition Television" technology of the following ISC facilities: Daytona International Raceway; Talladega Superspeedway; Michigan International Raceway; Phoenix International Raceway; Homestead-Miami Speedway; Kansas Speedway; Martinsville Speedway; Watkins Glen International; and Darlington Raceway.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Through the agreement, which runs through 2008, TI will highlight its DLP technology with at-track hospitality, themed advertising, promotion and/or other mutually agreed-to marketing support.

"This agreement demonstrates the growing interest from high-technology companies in ISC's premier motorsports facilities," says Lesa France Kennedy, president of ISC. "As the official HDTV technology at several of our facilities, TI will be able to reach consumers across the country through at-track marketing programs that will effectively complement their overall motorsports platform."

Racing News
Auto Racing Greats Converge at CFA Gallery Auto Racing Greats Converge at CFA GallerySAN ANSELMO, Calif.  American automotive racing legends Carroll Shelby, Phil Hill and Dan Gurney will appear in person at CFA Gallery on Saturday, November 12, 2005 for "The Art of Speed" -- an exciting automotive art event featuring paintings and limited edition prints autographed by these legends. Hundreds of works of automotive art from the world's premier automotive artists Le Roy Neiman, Nicholas Watts, Danny Day, Pat Bailey and Peter Mars are now on display and available for purchase at CFA Gallery. Numerous vintage race cars made famous by these legendary drivers will be on display at the event. CFA Gallery is open Wednesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm, and evenings by appointment.

This historic day long event is a once in a lifetime opportunity for auto and racing enthusiasts from around the country to meet these racing greats and to commemorate the event with a celebrity photograph with all three racing legends when purchasing a driver autographed work of art. Premier collectors who purchase a work of art in advance are invited to join CFA Gallery for an intimate sit-down "Dinner with the Drivers" on Saturday evening.

"The thrill of meeting legendary competitors in person is matched only by the adrenalin-fueled intensity of art depicting the race," says CFA Gallery Director Karen Johnston. "The Gallery is already a super-charged atmosphere, the perfect setting for the convergence of distinguished drivers and devoted fans."

The largest selection of "The Art of Speed" automotive fine art will be available now through November 12. Collectors are encouraged to visit CFA Gallery now, or to access the "Art of Speed" Web site (www.art-of-speed.com) to preview the collection. Private tours can be arranged and event details are available directly through CFA Gallery (800-972-1488).

CFA Gallery seeks to showcase collectors' classic cars during the event. Enthusiasts can contact CFA Gallery to reserve a collectors' spot in front of the gallery. CFA Gallery is located at 20 Greenfield Avenue, San Anselmo CA 94960.

A1 Grand Prix
A1GP drivers go surfing A1GP drivers go surfingToday was the last opportunity for drivers in Sydney for the A1 Grand Prix of Nations to let their hair down before things begin to get serious ahead of this weekend’s fourth round of The World Cup of Motorsport at Sydney’s Eastern Creek International Raceway from Friday through to Sunday, November 4-6. More....
Gordon to driver Hummer in Dakar Gordon to driver Hummer in DakarHUMMER Division and Robby Gordon Motorsports have joined together to take on the Dakar Rally, widely considered to be the most grueling off-road race in the world due to its brutal terrain and extreme environmental conditions.  Gordon will lead his Team Dakar USA from behind the wheel of a HUMMER H3 race truck.  His relationship with HUMMER will also include driving an H3 in the 2006 Baja 1000 and Baja 500 desert races.

“Team Dakar USA’s main objective will be to prove to the world that American innovation and determination can compete on the world stage,” said Gordon.  “We started planning for this just after my first Dakar Rally, where we won two stages, and I know we are prepared and ready to take on the world.”

According to Susan Docherty, HUMMER general manager, HUMMER jumped at the chance to partner with Gordon in this international race.  “This summer we took the first step in making HUMMER a true global brand, with the sale of the first H3’s in Europe,” said Docherty.  “This international event will give us a wonderful stage to show people around the world that the H3 is an exceptional off-road vehicle and one they should consider buying.”

Gordon’s H3 will consist of an H3 body paired with a specially developed chassis featuring a suspension designed by him and his Off-Road team.  The H3 will be a tube-chassis vehicle similar to Trophy Trucks races in the famed Baja 1000, except that it will have a fully enclosed air-conditioned cockpit, including windshield and side windows.  It will be powered by a production-based General Motors V8 engine.

The 16-stage Dakar race covers more than 6,000 miles (nearly 10,000 km) in just over two weeks.  While the event is gaining popularity in the United States, it has a broad following around the globe.  The 2006 Dakar begins on December 31 in Lisbon, Portugal and runs through Morocco, Mauritania, Mali, and Guinea before finishing in the capital city of Dakar, in Senegal.  The race covers all types of terrain, from mountains to sea level and farmland to desert.  Competitors can encounter snow and sub-zero temperatures as well as sandstorms and searing heat in the desert.  More information on the Dakar race is available at www.teamdakarusa.com.

Latest F1 news in brief Latest F1 news in brief
Ferrari back to work
Aguri not Honda 'b' team
Ferrari hail F1 revamp
Honda target top step
Alan Jones
No red card for Schu
Former F1 racers 'fat'
Hot News Archives
2000 2001 2002 2003

Search Hot News
Search Help
AutoRacing1 Inc. BBB Business Review