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DATE News (chronologically)
08/14/14
nassprint

Carl Edwards Announcement Expected Tuesday
Joe Gibbs Racing have announced a press conference set for Tuesday at 10am, where they are expect to announce the signing of Carl Edwards to drive a fourth entry for JGR in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series for the 2015 season.

Edwards announced earlier this year he would be leaving Roush-Fenway Racing after spending his entire 12-year Sprint Cup career with the organization. He has repeatedly told the press his current contract with Roush precluded him from discussing his 2015 plans.

Comment
08/14/14
f1

Which American racer will land an F1 seat in 2016?
It's likely any driver, including Alexander Rossi, will struggle with a new F1 team.  Haas Automation has a lot to learn about producing a winning F1 car.
We've been promised an American-born F1 driver in 2016 - but who will get the nod at Haas Formula?

When Gene Haas' new Formula 1 squad debuts in 2016 it will do so with an overtly American theme. This is intended to be a U.S F1 squad - though hopefully with rather more success than the disastrous USF1 effort of 2010.

Haas has already made it clear how he sees his driver lineup for year one: an experienced F1 peddler paired with an American rookie. After all, having a U.S-born racer in the car will ensure maximum exposure back home, which will be crucial if Haas is to make his bold venture successful.

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08/14/14
f1

Button to leave McLaren (3rd Update) UPDATE #3
Jenson Button has to wait for his walking papers
(GMM)  Eric Boullier has admitted McLaren is looking to eventually "refresh" its driver lineup.

Danish rookie Kevin Magnussen only debuted this year, but Mexican Sergio Perez was also only a single season into his McLaren career when he was ousted at the end of 2013.

It is rumored strongly that, ahead of the start of its works Honda partnership, Woking based McLaren is seeking a top driver to spearhead the project, such as former team racers Fernando Alonso or Lewis Hamilton, or quadruple world champion Sebastian Vettel.

"I can only do my best and hope that is good enough," said Magnussen.

Read more & Comment...
08/13/14
f1

Tobacco company plays down Lotus rumors
Lotus still runs a black car
(GMM)  Imperial Tobacco has played down reports it is looking to return to formula one with Lotus.

Recently, Pastor Maldonado said he would welcome the inspiration of Lotus' black and gold livery - the iconic John Player Special cigarette brand - back to the sport with Enstone.

Tobacco advertising in F1 is banned, but Ferrari continues to be backed by Philip Morris, whose Marlboro colors resemble the imagery on the Italian team's cars and logos.

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08/12/14
nassprint

3M leaving Roush team for Hendrick Team (Update) UPDATE This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' now. Jeff Gordon will have 3M as a primary sponsor of his No. 24 Chevrolet for 11 Sprint Cup races starting next season.

Hendrick Motorsports announced the deal, which includes an associate sponsorship, as covering the 2015-2017 seasons. Last week, the team announced the AARP Foundation's Drive to End Hunger would return as a primary sponsor for 13 races in 2015. The car also has primary sponsorship from Pepsi and Axalta.

"At 3M, we play to win, and we push hard every day to do just that," Jesse Singh, senior vice president, 3M Global Sales and Marketing, said in a team release. "With this deal, we align with champion driver Jeff Gordon and an organization at the top of its game in Hendrick Motorsports. What they do in the garage and on the track exemplifies what we're all about in our labs, plants and business teams around the world."

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08/12/14
nassprint

All other drivers saw Ward but Stewart? (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 A fellow driver in the sprint car race where 20-year old Kevin Ward, Jr. was killed after being struck by a race car driven by NASCAR's Tony Stewart is pouring cold water on speculation that poor lighting and Ward's black racing suit made him difficult to make out during the late-night race. Ward ran onto the track after Stewart's car put his car into the wall and the caution flag waved to show his displeasure to Stewart when his car passed by Ward's wrecked car on the next lap. Paul Kinney, a 30-year old driver in Saturday night's sprint car race on the dirt track at the Canandaigua Motorsports Park, told NBC News that he didn't see the collision that claimed Ward's life, but he knew driver visibility didn't contribute to the collision.

"I drove right by him," Kinney told NBC News in a phone interview Monday. "He looked a little bit angry. I didn’t think much of it. A lot of drivers do that." Kinney conceded that it wasn't a good idea for Ward to get out of his car and run onto the track towards other cars as they passed by as a lot of drivers do when they are upset about an on-track crash. "People get a little carried away. I actually got a little bit angry at a fellow racer last year," he said. "You don’t really think when you get out of the car. You just want to let ’em know what you’re thinking." "But nobody can speak for Tony," Kinney said. "Only Tony knows exactly what happened." He added, "I seen Kevin clear as day. Nobody else ran into him, either."

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08/11/14
irl

Pocono to dump IndyCar after this year? (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 In the days leading up to the recent Pocono INDYCAR 500 at Pocono Raceway, reports circulated that ticket sales weren’t keeping pace with the 2013 event and without improvement, track management might consider bailing out of the last year of its three-year contract.

According to Brandon Igdalsky, president and CEO of Pocono Raceway, a visitor to Watkins Glen International this weekend, IndyCar ticket sales did not match that of the 2013 race, but all may not be lost.  While non-committal about the future of the race, he said there’s on-going communication with Verizon IndyCar Series management and an announcement is anticipated shortly.

Reading between the lines, one’s sense is that IndyCar will return to the venerable tricky-triangle but not on the 4th of July weekend, as fans have let it be known they want to see the race but not on a holiday weekend. motorsport.com

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08/11/14
uscc
motogp

IMS To Keep loser MotoGP Event, Drop loser IMSA Race
Of course there was no mention that you could shoot a cannon into the grandstands at both races and not hit anyone.  When is IMS brass going to learn?  Kick all other series out and just run two IndyCar races a year.  Both will eventually sellout and IMS won't look like a loser track with empty grandstands.
MotoGP "likely will race" at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in '15, while IMSA's sports cars "will not."

Track President Doug Boles said that the "Thursday-Friday format used by sports cars the past three years on NASCAR's Brickyard 400 weekend has not worked for either the sanctioning body or the track."

He added that "there are discussions about IMS hosting a standalone sports car event in the future, but there wasn't enough time to flush out details" for '15.

Boles "expects IMS will be on the schedule" that Dorna Sports, the MotoGP commercial rights holder, announces in the fall. IndyStar.com

Comment
08/09/14
nassprint

New Crew Chief for Busch
According to AR1 sources Adam Stevens will be replacing Dave Rogers as Kyle Busch's crew chief starting in 2015.

Comment
08/08/14
f1

McLaren forced to take Japanese driver?
Naoki Yamamoto
Another rumor floating about during the August break and F1 team factory shutdown period is that Honda, McLaren's returning works engine supplier for 2015, may be eyeing a Japanese driver for the foray.

26-year-old Naoki Yamamoto (brother of Sakon Yamamoto from the former Hispania F1 team?), currently carrying the number 1 for the Honda-linked Mugen team in Japan's premier open wheel Super Formula series, told Japanese TV it is "not impossible" he will play a role.

Comment
08/08/14
f1

Alonso Reportedly Asking For New Three-Year Deal Worth $140M (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 (GMM) Fernando Alonso has taken time out of his summer vacation to deny speculation about his future.

Currently on a cycling tour in the Italian Dolomites, the Spaniard has obviously read rumors about his potential switch to McLaren, or perhaps his demands for $50 million a year to sign a new Ferrari contract.

Without referring specifically to either of the rumors, Alonso told his more than 2 million Twitter followers: "A thing that's not true, even if is copied a thousand times, will remain false.

"Always helpful to remember this," the 33-year-old added.

Read more & Comment...
08/07/14
nassprint

Chase Elliott could run some Cup races in 2015
Chase Elliott
Rick Hendrick's plan for NASCAR Nationwide Series phenom Chase Elliott evidently entails a few NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts next season, the champion car owner said Wednesday in an interview on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. The 18-year-old Elliott tops the Nationwide Series standings and leads all series regulars with three race victories. Dale Earnhardt Jr., co-owner of his JR Motorsports race team, has said that Elliott is likely to run another full season on NASCAR's No. 2 circuit next year. Hendrick, also a co-owner at JRM, sounded as if a few premier series starts will also be sprinkled into that mix. A test session in which Elliott tested the cars of Hendrick Motorsports champion drivers Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon convinced the team owner the youngster was ready, even before he took the Nationwide circuit by storm.

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08/06/14
f1

Pirelli now eyeing 19-inch F1 tires, not 18-inch
During last month's Formula One test session at Silverstone, Lotus reserve Charles Pic turned laps on Pirelli tires fitted with an 18-inch rim.

But while Pirelli motorsports director Paul Hembery said that he got good feedback, he did say at the time that a 19-inch tire could be "probably more interesting going forward."

Sure enough, Hembery's now confirmed that his company's focusing on 19-inch tires for future seasons as F1 ponders ways to become more road-relevant.

Read more & Comment...
08/05/14
nassprint

Who will replace Ambrose on Petty team?
If Marcos Ambrose does duck out of NASCAR after 2014, who would drive the No. 9 Ford for RPM come 2015?

As long as RPM has sponsorship, there's no chance that they’d shut down the team, but they don’t have anyone in the queue either that’s ready for Sprint Cup. Nationwide Series rookie driver Dakota Armstrong is still miles away before he’s ready for the premier series, if ever.

So it's likely, the Ford-powered team would have to look outside their organization should Ambrose vacate the No. 9 seat.

Another out there choice is the current No. 5 driver. Kasey Kahne is in his final year of his first contract with Hendrick Motorsports. If he weren't to get a contract renewal, could he end up back with RPM, where he first raced with back in 2010?

Comment
08/05/14
f1

Ecclestone to keep F1 job after $100m court deal (3rd Update) UPDATE #3 This rumor will upgraded to 'fact' today when it is official Ecclestone paid $100M to buy his innocence.

08/02/14
Ecclestone not happy parting with $100M
(GMM)  Bernie Ecclestone looks set to avoid jail and retain control of formula one.

Germany's Suddeutsche Zeitung is reporting on Saturday that the F1 chief executive has negotiated a US $100 million settlement with prosecutors in his high-profile corruption case in Germany.

The newspaper did not name its sources but said the settlement, negotiated in Munich on Saturday, will terminate the trial altogether and see all charges dropped.

Earlier in the week, there was talk of a EUR 25 million compensation payment to the Munich state bank BayernLB.

Read more & Comment...
08/04/14
irl

The future of the Honda Indy Toronto? (4th Update) UPDATE #4 We heard the last weekend in June next year for the Toronto IndyCar race this past weekend in the Mid-Ohio paddock, but our sources in Toronto say the first week in June (June 5-6-7) is what the city of Toronto wants. That would come one week after Detroit on May 29-30-31.

08/01/14 We're hearing here in Mid-Ohio the weekend that the last weekend of June next year for the Honda GP of Toronto.

07/31/14 A reader asks, Dear AR1.com, Why doesn't IndyCar wake up and move the Toronto race from that terrible street circuit and put it at Mosport or what is called now Canadian Tire Motorsport Circuit where the race belongs. They would have a 100,000 fans there and could have a doubleheader weekend. If they can race at Mid-Ohio and Elkhart Lake they sure in hell can race at Mosport. Wake up IndyCar and do the right thing. Bert Walsh

Dear Bert, We were told there are government tax incentives for businesses that create jobs inside the greenbelt around Toronto.  And race promoter Kim Green to me the race would never move from its downtown location.  They just need to get around next year's scheduling dilemma. Mark C.

07/30/14
The IndyCar event in Toronto has long been one of the sport's hallmark events. Could it be headed for the crowded graveyard of failed Indy car races?
Editor's note: The following Toronto Sun article by Dean McNulty was written after the Honda Indy Toronto two weeks ago. However, it is a very good breakdown of the logistical hurdles in place for a potential IndyCar race in Toronto in 2015. Further, McNulty notes that a change in local government could result in the municipality not chipping in an estimated $2 million annually in support of the race. Yes, according to McNulty another once glorious Indy car event may be set to join very crowded ash heap of failed Indy car events.

For more detail on the very unfortunate history of failed IndyCar events, see this article by AR1's Brian Carroccio from last September. In the meantime, here is McNulty's article talking about the future of Toronto.

With another Honda Indy Toronto in the books, the next item on the motorsports agenda in Southern Ontario has got to be to make sure there is a next Honda Indy Toronto.

And it says here that is not a slam dunk by any stretch of the imagination.

Read more & Comment...
08/04/14
f1

Ecclestone to propose Bavaria build a circuit with his money
In London, Christian Sylt wrote Ecclestone's lawyer Sven Thomas said the F1 boss will asked the court "to use the $100M he is paying as a fine to stay out of jail to build a new Formula One track in the region." Thomas said, "the $100 million is for the state of Bavaria. Maybe they will try and build a circuit. I will propose this - that they should build a nice circuit." London INDEPENDENT

Comment
08/04/14
nassprint

Wood Bothers to leave Roush Fenway Racing stable
According to AR1.com sources, the Wood Bros are leaving the Roush Fenway Racing stable next year. Our sources say that in 2015 they will get cars and engineering support directly from Penske Racing.  For all intents and purposes it will be a satellite Penske team we hear.

Comment
08/04/14
f1

Marmorini to Renault after Ferrari exit
Luca Marmorini
(GMM)  Mere days after officially leaving Ferrari, Luca Marmorini looks set to take another high-profile job in formula one.

The 53-year-old's departure was interpreted as the latest rolling head at Ferrari amid the fabled Italian team's poor start to the new turbo V6 era.

Marmorini, formerly Ferrari's engine and electronics chief, could now take some of his closest colleagues at Maranello with him to another struggling F1 engine supplier, Renault Sport F1.

That is the claim of the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, reporting that Marmorini's arrival is part of a restructuring at Renault after also erring with its first turbo V6 prominently supplied to reigning world champions Red Bull.

Read more & Comment...
08/04/14
irl
f1

Pagenaud to test F1 car (Update) UPDATE (GMM)  A leading contender to become a test driver for Honda's F1 return has emerged.

The publication Racer said Honda-powered IndyCar frontrunner Simon Pagenaud is in talks to make his F1 test debut with Japanese power next winter ahead of Honda's works McLaren foray for 2015.

"I've been in touch with some people, some promising things are happening, so we'll see," the Frenchman said.

Asked if Honda will support his push to test a formula one car, Pagenaud laughed as he answered: "I hope they would ... why wouldn't they?"

Read more & Comment...
08/03/14
f1

Bianchi, Gutierrez, Sainz star in 2014 F1 'silly season' (Update) UPDATE
Sauber might replace Gutierrez
Esteban Gutierrez is hoping to open talks with Sauber regarding a new contract for 2015 in the next few weeks despite a difficult campaign in 2014.

The Mexican driver has failed to score any points alongside teammate Adrian Sutil (who is also point-less) as the C33 car continues to give all at the Swiss team a headache. Gutierrez did look capable of scoring points in Monaco and Hungary, but retired from both races.

He is currently embroiled in a five-way fight for a seat at Sauber next season with Sutil, reserve driver Giedo van der Garde, young protege Sergey Sirotkin and affiliate driver Simona de Silvestro. However, he still hopes to sit down and sort out a new deal in the next few weeks.

"That's something we need to speak [about] in the next few weeks," Gutierrez explained to Sky. "Obviously it’s a subject that we’ll bring up pretty soon and something that we also need to look after certain opportunities that we can get around and see what’s really the most convenient one."

Read more & Comment...
08/03/14
irl

Overheard in Toronto - Saturday (Update) 
The new Indy Lights car sure does look good. But can team owners afford it?
UPDATE
Regarding our rumor from Toronto that no one can afford the new Indy Lights car........There are currently no orders for the new Indy Lights car.  The cost for the chassis is rumored to be $250,000, which is more than the old chassis.  Many of the Indy-area would-be owners, especially the Foyt family, remember when the USAC Silver Crown cars tried to go with radical new chassis design, when a few teams bought the new car, but not enough to run a series, and so Silver Crown soldiers on with a "large sprint car" design.  No doubt many teams would rather add an extra Indy car – where sponsor money can be obtained – rather than try to run an Indy Lights car, which depends on the supply of rich kids that can afford $1 million to run a season. Tim Wohlford reporting from Mid-Ohio

Read more & Comment...
08/03/14
irl

Overheard in Mid-Ohio
Will aero-kits ruin the close racing we've seen since the advent of the DW12?
Rumor in the paddock that the owners are nervous about the new IndyCar aero kits. They are concerned about the cost of the kits, combined with the costs of wind tunnel testing to be competitive. No doubt that many wonder if the parity we’ve seen this year will continue once the big-money teams start working on tweaking the new parts. Chevy and Honda seem to want their respective teams to look like they have different cars, but one has to wonder if the change will bring in additional sponsor dollars to pay for it all – and the lack of sponsor support is why we do “kit car” racing today, isn’t it? Owners are also concerned that one package will be clearly superior to the other, which would be just as bad as one engine package being clearly superior. Sponsors, it seems, don’t want to hear that you can’t get the good bits.... Tim Wohlford reporting from Mid-Ohio

Comment
08/03/14
irl
wc

PWC to be sanctioned by IndyCar?
INDYCAR to sanction Pirelli World Challenge?
We're hearing that there has been a meeting at Mid-Ohio, in which INDYCAR sanctioning Pirelli World Challenge events was discussed. Currently, World Challenge events are sanctioned by the SCCA.

While we hear nothing is imminent for now, it is intriguing that the subject has been raised. And INDYCAR sanction of WC events would represent a furthering of the partnership between the two series.

Comment
08/02/14
irl

Overheard at Detroit (4th Update)
Might we see Sage Karam back in the cockpit later this year?
Recall, we originally rumored in Detroit that 2013 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires Champion Sage Karam was looking to potentially run more races this season. Karam, of course, ran the Indianapolis 500 in a satellite Chip Ganassi Racing entry for Dreyer and Reinbold/Kingdom Racing. The Nazareth, PA native has also participated in a handful of Tudor United Sports Car races for Ganassi, including last week's Brickyard Grand Prix, where he and Scott Pruett finished second.

Now, Karam told us in the Motor City, the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma was a possibility due to a test in advance of the August 24th race. However, we bumped into the talented youngster this morning and it seems that if Karam does run again in 2014, it will likely in the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway. Further, Karam's ride would be in conjunction with Dreyer and Reinbold, not a fifth Ganassi entry.

Of course, Karam agreed to a long-term contract with Ganassi in April. And we can report that the team boss has asked the Nazareth, PA native to be at each of the remaining four races. Karam was on Scott Dixon's pit stand during this morning's practice session at Mid-Ohio, and is being mentored by four-time series champion and three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Dario Franchitti.

Read more & Comment...
08/02/14
nassprint

Ryan Blaney to drive for Wood Brothers in 2015 (Update) UPDATE
Ryan Blaney
Blaney does have one career Sprint Cup start, making his debut with Team Penske earlier this season at Kansas. "We're focused on winning the truck championship this year and focused on this weekend at Pocono," Blaney said. "Keep growing this (program). Those days will sort themselves out down the road." Team Penske Vice President Jonathan Gibson said via email Friday that the organization has plans for Blaney's future. "Ryan Blaney continues to do a great job with our organization and we have a plan for his progression within Team Penske," he said. "While we have had some discussions with our partners at Ford, nothing has been finalized." nascar.com

08/02/14 Ryan Blaney will drive the #21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford in 2015, sources have told Motorsport.com. Blaney, 20, will run a limited Sprint Cup schedule in the venerable #21 Ford along with Nationwide Series races for Team Penske as part of a technical alliance between Penske and the Wood Brothers. An announcement is expected around the race at Michigan International Speedway on Aug. 17. Blaney currently leads the Camping World Truck Series points driving the #29 Ford for Brad Keselowski Racing. In just his second full season on the tour, Blaney has two wins - the first coming in just his third career start. Blaney has a stellar average finish of 7.6.

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08/01/14
irl

Overheard in Toronto - Friday (3rd Update) UPDATE #3 AR1.com rumored in Toronto that JR Hildebrand is working on sponsorship for a fulltime IndyCar ride in 2015 and Ed Carpenter has said he would like to expand the Ed Carpenter Racing team to a second car next year.

As ever, finding the funding to make it happen will determine whether it will in fact, happen.

"We would like to expand," Carpenter said during Wednesday's INDYCAR conference call. "I think we’ve talked about that in 2012 when we started the team, that's something we would like to do. But there are always a lot of variables with that, getting to that point. Hopefully we get there. We're working hard to be able to expand. We’ll just have to wait and see what the future holds."

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08/01/14
f1

Look for Lotus F1 to go belly-up or be sold
F1 bankrupting Gerard Lopez
(GMM)  Alarming news about the financial health of Lotus team owner Gerard Lopez has emerged.

Together with Eric Lux, fellow Luxembourger Lopez heads the investment company Genii Capital, which owns the Enstone based team.

After finishing a strong fourth in the last two constructors' world championships, Lotus is currently a mere eighth after a particularly difficult first half to the 2014 campaign.

And according to the Luxembourg newspaper Tageblatt, the financial news is even worse.

Read more & Comment...
08/01/14
f1

Bottas to McLaren to replace Button?
Valtteri Bottas rumored to replace an aging and slowing Jenson Button
(GMM)  Mika Hakkinen has acknowledged rumors linking his protege Valtteri Bottas with McLaren.

The fellow Finn and double world champion has been a key to Bottas' formula one foray so far, culminating in the 24-year-old's debut at Williams last year after a season on the testing and Friday practice bench.

But it is in 2014 that Bottas, with a hat-trick of podiums in June and July and a regular top-three qualifier, has hit the kind of form that now has him linked with a bright F1 future.

"At the moment the two hot names in F1 are Bottas and Ricciardo," Hakkinen, who has been involved in Bottas' management, said in his latest interview with sponsor Hermes.

When Hakkinen retired, he famously advised McLaren that if the British team wanted to continue to win, "get the Finn" -- referring to Kimi Raikkonen.

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08/01/14
f1

Did Ferrari sack Pat Fry? (Update) UPDATE
Pat Fry history...for the 2nd time?
Earlier this week, the fabled Italian team denied reports that Fry is also in danger of being axed.

But 1998 and 1999 world champion Mika Hakkinen, who worked closely with Fry during his successful McLaren career, has also heard the rumors.

The Finn said he thought of Fry when Ferrari made a big strategy blunder in Hungaroring qualifying last Saturday that stranded Kimi Raikkonen down the grid.

"Such a thing should not happen with a team on the level of Ferrari," Hakkinen said in his latest column for sponsor Hermes.

"I wondered a bit about such a serious error happening under Pat Fry, who I know very well," he admitted.  "The alarm bells should be ringing for everybody."

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07/31/14
f1

Marmorini 'in danger' at Ferrari (3rd Update) UPDATE #3 We already rumored this three weeks ago, but finally today Ferrari has confirmed that the head of its engine and electronics department, Luca Marmorini, has left the team.

Marmorini's job has been in doubt since the start of the year when it became clear that the Ferrari power unit was not a match for rivals Mercedes.

"Ferrari announces that, as of today, Luca Marmorini, director of the engine and electronics department, is leaving the company," read a team statement on Thursday. "As part of the restructuring of the Power Unit department, Mattia Binotto will assume the role of chief operating officer."

Marmorini's departure follows Stefano Domenicali's resignation as team principal in April and the appointment of Marco Mattiacci as his replacement. The team confirmed that technical director James Allison remains ultimately responsible for car design.

Read more & Comment...
07/31/14
uscc
irl

Cosmo to run IndyCar
Guy Cosmo
This RACER.com article by Marshall Pruett says Tudor United SportsCar driver Guy Cosmo is looking to race in the Verizon IndyCar Series as early as next season. While it's not known how many races Cosmo would run, the 37-year old West Palm Beach resident is of course, a product of the American Open Wheel Racing ladder system, and won the 2002 Pro Mazda Championship. He has spent the last decade successfully racing sports cars, and is looking to pursue his dream of racing Indy cars.

Outside the car, Cosmo has been spending time lately working on his First Gear Project. With the assistance of his wife Louisa, Cosmo has created an innovative platform which helps support  automotive and racing industry initiatives. 

AR1's Brian Carroccio spent some time recently talking with Cosmo about First Gear Project. Look for an article about the unique project in the next few days about the on the AR1 home page.

Comment
07/31/14
irl

2015 F1 Silly Season
Our traditional F1Silly Season page for 2015 has been started and can be found here.

Comment
07/30/14
f1
cart

Mexico could be 'double points' finale in 2015, use CART circuit layout
Rumor has it that F1 will copy CART and the circuit will cut through the stadium that seats 40,000 to bypass the dangerous Peraltada corner. In 2002 the CART race drew 250,000 in Mexico City and the photo below shows the crowd just in the stadium.  This was before Tony George destroyed it
(GMM)  Mexico could close next year's world championship with a 'double points' finale.

That is the claim of FIA vice president Jose Abed, who represents Mexico on the governing body's World Motor Sport Council.

It was confirmed last week that, after a more than two decade absence, the sport is returning in 2015 to the iconic Mexico City layout, which is being renovated.

It will disappoint some, however, that Abed confirmed to Grupo Formula radio that the exhilarating Peraltada corner will be axed from the new F1 layout.

"Firstly, the old banked curve is too dangerous," he explained, "and the second reason is that we need to accommodate another 40,000 spectators."

But the 2015 Mexican grand prix could be spectacular for another reason, Abed revealed.

"Perhaps we will see the season finale in Mexico -- with double points," he said.

Comment
07/29/14
nassprint

No. 11 Hamlin to be penalized (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) is aware of the penalty issued by NASCAR today regarding the #11 team's post-race inspection infraction following Sunday's Sprint Cup Series race in Indianapolis. JGR will plan to appeal the penalty, however, crew chief Darian Grubb and car chief Wesley Sherrill will begin to serve their suspensions starting this weekend in Pocono. Joe Gibbs Racing PR

07/29/14 This rumor is now 'fact'. The #11 team that competes in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series has been penalized for a rules infraction discovered in post-race inspection July 27 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. This infraction is a P5 level penalty which is outlined in Section 12-4.5 A (9) of the 2014 NASCAR rule book:

Approved parts that fail or are improperly installed to fail in their intended use of great importance (e.g.; rear wheel well panels that fail and allow air evacuation in the trunk area; oil box cover that fails and allows air evacuation in the driver compartment; shifter boot cover that fails and allows air evacuation through the floor pan). This infraction violates Sections 12-1, 20-2.1, 20.3.4, 20.3.4.5.

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07/28/14
nassprint

Edwards to leave Roush (15th Update) UPDATE #15 Yet another AR1.com source has Edwards going to Joe Gibbs Racing in 2015, but nothing is expected to be announced until September.

07/27/14 This rumor is now 'fact.'  Carl Edwards, winner of 23 races for the organization since 2005, will not return in 2015, Roush Fenway Racing announced Sunday. Greg Biffle has signed a contract extension to continue in his current ride.

Sunday's announcement by news release was no surprise. Both Edwards and Joe Gibbs Racing officials have been mum when asked if the 2011 Cup runner-up would move to a new fourth JGR team next season.

Team owner Jack Roush said a driver leaving is part of the business and it was not emotional for him. He said Edwards had told him more than a month ago that he was in serious discussions with another team and did not tell him where he was going.

Read more & Comment...
07/28/14
f1

Hamilton angling for new EUR 90m contract
Rumor has it that Hamilton thinks he should be paid $40 million per year to drive, or about $2 million per grand prix
(GMM)  Lewis Hamilton is angling for a pay-rise at Mercedes, the major German newspaper Bild-Zeitung reports.

The big 'silly season' rumor in Hungary last weekend was about Hamilton's silver-colored seat beyond the end of his 2015 contract.

The news followed hot on the heels of Nico Rosberg's extended Mercedes deal, reportedly featuring a big pay-raise making his new three-year contract worth EUR 55 million.

Bild reports that Hamilton and his management are now pushing for a new EUR 90 million ($120M USD)  deal for 2016, 2017 and 2018.

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07/26/14
f1

'Silly season' strikes F1 throughout 2014 grid
(GMM)  The unofficial 'silly season' has officially hit F1, as talk of a move to Mercedes for world champion Sebastian Vettel buzzes the paddock.

The rumor went full circle in the space of a couple of days, with Mercedes' Niki Lauda trying his best on Friday to bring it to a swift halt.

But Red Bull's Dr Helmut Marko suggested to Sport Bild that he doesn't necessarily believe Lauda did not make a move for the German driver.

"Unfortunately, Niki has three opinions: one in the morning, one at noon and one in the evening," he said.

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07/25/14
f1

Lauda rubbishes Vettel-to-Mercedes rumor (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 (GMM)  With the summer sun baking in Budapest, 'silly season' has well and truly arrived in the F1 paddock.

The big name is Sebastian Vettel, with rumors suggesting the Red Bull driver could be on the move to Mercedes in 2016.

Nico Rosberg, Vettel's potential teammate for that year, told Britain's Sky he thought speculating about two years' time was "not silly, it's what comes after silly".

Others think it's just contract extension time.

Vettel is firmly under contract to Red Bull for another year, so - as a quadruple world champion - perhaps he is just lighting a rumor or two to drive up his price.

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07/25/14
f1

Ecclestone Lining Up Azerbaijan Grand Prix for 2016 (5th Update) UPDATE #5 "I am delighted to officially announce that we have signed a contract to bring Formula 1 racing to Baku in 2016. Our location at the crossroads of eastern Europe and western Asia is a new frontier for Formula 1 racing," said Azerbaijan's Minister of Youth and Sport, Azad Rahimov.

"Azerbaijan is a modern European country that has established a reputation as a centre of sporting excellence. The deal to bring Formula 1 racing to Baku is a very significant new chapter in our ongoing success to attract the world's largest sporting events to our country," he added.

While the design and exact course of the city street racetrack has yet to be finalized, Minister Rahimov revealed that it is envisaged that Baku's Azadliq Square will accommodate the race start, main grandstand and pits and that the racetrack will include major roads and landmarks such as Neftchilar Avenue, Government House and Maiden Tower.

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07/24/14
f1

New Jersey F1 race delayed again, alternate city emerges
The area around Liberty State Park in Jersey City overlooks Lower Manhattan.  The Statue of Liberty is so close you can touch it.  It would be a great location for the track
A Formula One Grand Prix race in North Jersey once scheduled to debut in 2013 now won’t start its engines before 2016 at the earliest.

Carl Goldberg, whose Roseland Property owns most of the land that would be used for the 3.2-mile race in Weehawken and West New York, said Thursday there was "no possibility" of a race taking place next year.

Goldberg's comment confirmed a report by Forbes that quoted Bernie Ecclestone, the chief executive of the Formula One racing circuit, as saying that 2016 would be "the soonest" that New Jersey could be added to an F1 calendar that features about 20 races per year all over the world.

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07/24/14
f1

Force India 'could collapse' amid Mallya crisis UPDATE The Indian government today said some banks have initiated the process of declaring debt-ridden Kingfisher Airlines as willful defaulter. “Some banks have already started the process,” Financial Services Secretary G S Sandhu said when asked as to whether the banks are going to declare Kingfisher Airlines and its promoter Vijay Mallya as willful defaulter. Once declared willful defaulter, criminal proceedings can be initiated against promoters and directors of the company.

Besides, they would not be allowed to raise fresh funds from banks and set up new ventures for five years. “This (declaring willful defaulter) would be done by banks and it would be their individual decision,” he said.

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07/24/14
f1

Ecclestone signs Mexican F1 deal for 2015 (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' today. Mexico will return to the Formula 1 calendar next season after a 23-year absence, organizers said on Wednesday.

The event will take place at the 2.747-mile Mexico City circuit.

During a press conference in Mexico on Wednesday, F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone sent a message saying he was delighted the country was getting F1 back.

"I feel it is the right time for F1 and Mexico and I'm sure it will be to the benefit of both for many years," he explained.

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07/24/14
f1

Sutil says feet planted despite rumors
Adrian Sutil must have a big checkbook to be so sure he will stay in F1
(GMM)  Adrian Sutil on Thursday insisted he has no intention of losing his place in formula one.

The rumor dates back a week, even before Sauber's woeful 2014 season got even worse when German Sutil's car spun during the grand prix and became stranded on the Hockenheim circuit.

Earlier, boss Monisha Kaltenborn had said when asked about the performance of her drivers: "I am not satisfied with the performance of the team."

Esteban Gutierrez, however, appears safe.  He is backed by Telmex, whose Carlos Slim is closely linked with the newly-confirmed 2015 Mexican grand prix.

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07/23/14
f1

CVC to sell F1 by July 2015
Close to retirement, Bernie's too old to think about buying F1 again, but he did think about it
Formula One is on track to get a new owner next year and Bernie Ecclestone isn't planning to buy it according to rumors in the Telegraph and American business magazine Forbes by Christian Sylt. 

For the past few years speculation has run wild about the sale of F1 with rumored buyers ranging from Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation media empire to Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund Mubadala. The origin of the talk is that the sport's single largest shareholder CVC is a private equity firm meaning that it used other people's money to buy its stake so will have to sell up at some stage to give them a return. The big question is when this will happen and at last we have an answer.

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07/23/14
f1

Advance microchip implant in Michael Schumachers future?
While Michael Schumacher continues to recover from a serious head injury suffered in a skiing accident on Dec. 29, his family may be considering a non-traditional course of treatment.

According to the London Daily Mail in a published report That microchip technology has had some success in at least one other case of paralysis, according to one of the doctors in the report.

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07/23/14
f1

Alonso could be free to leave Ferrari - sources
Alonso might be free to walk away from Ferrari
(GMM)  Fernando Alonso could be contractually free to walk away from Ferrari.

Technically, the Spaniard remains under contract to the struggling Maranello team until the end of 2016.

"I'm sure he is very frustrated," Niki Lauda told the Spanish newspaper El Pais earlier this week.

But "he can't just go to McLaren because he has a contract that he can't get out of unless he's sacked.  Sometimes you choose a car and you're wrong."

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07/21/14
f1

Schu might return home this summer
Going home soon?
(GMM)  Michael Schumacher might soon continue his rehabilitation at home, according to the Swiss newspaper Sonntagsblick.

After six months in a coma, the seven time world champion was recently transferred from intensive care in Grenoble to a rehabilitation ward in Lausanne.

That is not far from the Schumachers' home on the shores of Lake Geneva, but Sonntagsblick claims the 45-year-old German could return home "during the course of the summer".

The report cited sources close to the Lausanne hospital.

Mark Mader, the chief doctor at a rehabilitation hospital in Basel, Switzerland, said that while home care is "difficult" for the family, "it is optimal" for patients like Schumacher.

Comment
07/20/14
irl

Pagenaud to Andretti? (4th Update) UPDATE #5 This rumor is upgraded to 'strong' with the rumor Hinchcliffe may not stay with Andretti's team.

07/13/14 There continues to be a sense among some drivers that Simon Pagenaud has agreed to join Andretti Autosport for 2015. Pagenaud has twice denied that to The Indy Star newspaper.

06/28/14 I've confirmed that if a Pagenaud-to-Andretti situation comes to fruition, it would be as a fifth car, not at the expense of one of the current drivers. A potential lineup of Ryan Hunter-Reay, James Hinchcliffe, Marco Andretti, Carlos Munoz and Pagenaud could move Andretti Autosport into a class of its own.

As they sit in the championship right now, RHR (third), Simon (fourth), Marco (fifth) and Munoz (sixth) are already offering a glimpse of what 2015 mike look like under Mikey's tent...

What do you think? Should Simon stay with the merry band of overachievers at Schmidt Peterson Motorsports, or take his talents to Andretti Land? And if he does depart for Michael's team, who should Schmidt pursue to lead the team in Pagenaud's absence? Marshall Pruett/Racer.com

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07/20/14
tv news

Turner Sports could disappear in potential media mergers
The latest machinations of the corporate media giants could result in the end of one of sports broadcasting's great brands. According to multiple reports, 21st Century Fox is pushing to acquire rival giant Time Warner. Even after an initial $80 billion bid was rebuffed, Fox and its leader Rupert Murdoch are said to be "determined and unlikely to walk away anytime soon".

Much of the talk surrounding a potential Fox acquisition of Time Warner has focused on sports and with good reason. Through Turner Sports, Time Warner has one of the most impressive sets of sports rights on cable television. Adding Turner Sports' haul to the existing Fox Sports line-up - the rest of the MLB playoffs, the NFL, NASCAR and college football - would turn the latter into the dominant player in TV sports. ESPN would still be the leader in many ways, but FOX and Fox Sports 1 would have a virtually unmatched portfolio.

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07/19/14
f1

Sainz debut in 2014 'possible' (2nd Update) UPDATE #2
Carlos Sainz Jr
Caterham Team Principal Christijan Albers has downplayed suggestions that Red Bull young driver Carlos Sainz Jr. could race for the team in 2014.

Sainz Jr., who currently leads the Formula Renault 3.5 Championship, confirmed that he held talks with Caterham during the British Grand Prix weekend, but insisted that his future is in the hands of Red Bull.

Albers dismissed thoughts that Sainz Jr. could race for Caterham in 2014 and insists that he is happy with the current pairing of Kamui Kobayashi and Marcus Ericsson.

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07/18/14
f1

F1 in steep decline in Germany
As we predicted, the horribly sounding engines and Mercedes domination will kill off interest in F1.  F1 spent all the money on the new engines and they are destroying the sport.

With German television audiences already in decline, ticket sales for this weekend's race at Hockenheim are not pointing towards a sell-out even though German Nico Rosberg is leading the championship for Mercedes. Grandstands were largely empty on Friday.

Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff admitted the lack of crowds on Friday were disappointing.

"It's not satisfying," explained Wolff. "If you compare Hockenheim Friday to Friday at Silverstone and Friday in Austria, it's a different world.

"We have to understand why that is. I'm not sure whether we have an exact number for Sunday already - you know, there are lots of people probably deciding at short notice, depending on the weekend - and we have to analyze the phenomenon."

Psst, someone tell Toto it his team that is destroying sport.  Mercedes pushed for the ridiculous 'green' engines they now use.  They are expensive and sound horrible, a sure recipe for disaster.

"If the weekend continues like it does now, we need to think about it."

F1 is facing growing calls to consider radical changes in a bid to stop interest in it declining - with FIA president Jean Todt this week backing the idea of a summit for the sport to address its issues.

Comment
07/18/14
f1

Driver changes looming at Caterham, Sauber
New engine regulations have made F1 so expensive ride buyers like Marcus Ericsson are essential.  And the new regulations have ruined the racing and they sound horrible.  Way to go F1!
(GMM)  After over 40 staff were shown the exit this week, arguably the most nervous drivers in the Hockenheim paddock are wearing green.

Marcus Ericsson is probably safe due to his healthy sponsorship purse, but bringing much less to Caterham's table in 2014 is Japanese Kamui Kobayashi, who was signed by the now-departed Tony Fernandes mainly for his fight and experience.

"If I'm not doing a good job tomorrow," he said in Germany, "maybe I'll be fired tomorrow."

The rumors at the newly-sold Caterham could be tying in with rumors at Sauber, another team struggling at the back of the grid this year.

The Swiss team's boss Monisha Kaltenborn refused to categorically back drivers Esteban Gutierrez and Adrian Sutil as she mused Sauber's pointless year so far in Hockenheim.

"In our history," she was quoted by German reporters, "we have never been so bad.

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07/16/14
f1

Van der Garde to race for Sauber?
Giedo van der Garde
(GMM) Giedo van der Garde has played down rumors linking him with a race seat at Sauber.

The 29-year-old Dutchman is currently the Swiss team's reserve driver, having lost his Caterham race seat at the end of last year.

He will drive the C33 at Hockenheim on Friday morning.

But there have been paddock rumors in recent weeks about struggling Sauber's existing 2014 race lineup, comprising Adrian Sutil alongside Mexican Esteban Gutierrez.

Reports have said van der Garde's sponsors, including the fashion label McGregor, are offering "many millions" to Sauber if he is promoted to the race seat.

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07/15/14
f1

Caterham most likely to lodge Fric protest
(GMM)  The word on everyone's lips ahead of the German grand prix weekend is 'Fric'.

In the days before scrutineering on Thursday, the biggest questions are: will teams continue to use the newly-controversial technology, and will their rivals lodge protests?

The issue arose after Silverstone, when Charlie Whiting wrote a letter warning that the 'front and rear interconnected' suspension systems may in fact be illegal.

It has not been banned, but the FIA official said some teams may choose to lodge protests which could be upheld by the stewards.

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07/14/14
irl

IndyCar 2015 Silly Season underway
Don't look now. But in 47 days, the Verizon IndyCar Series will conclude its 2014 season at Auto Club Speedway. Granted, there are still 6 races to run in what will no doubt be a grueling stretch run for the drivers and teams.

Still, with the end of the 2014 season fast approaching in this condensed season, it's not too early to start talking 2015. Today, AutoRacing1 will take a look at the 2015 IndyCar Silly Season.

Of course, scuttlebutt and reports have and will continue to surface regarding possible destinations of drivers. The information presented below is a product of numerous factors, such as the nuts-and-bolts info from team press releases and official announcements regarding the contractual status of drivers, and discussions AR1 has had with team personnel. While there is speculation/opinion interwoven into what is below, we've gone to great lengths to be clear on what is ‘official status' and what is speculative in nature.

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