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The Aeroscreen is great in the dry, but the wet is a big unknown.
The one major flaw with the new IndyCar Aeroscreen is when it rains. Whereas sportscars have windshield wipers, IndyCars do not.
Whereas drivers can pull off a helmet visor tear-off or wipe their visor with a rag in the rain, not so with the Aeroscreen. The water, if heavy enough, especially behind another car, could blind the driver.
IndyCar and IMSA eyeing Charlotte Roval (2nd Update)
UPDATE This rumor is downgraded to 'false' for IndyCar. “It’s a wonderful initiative brought on by Pennzoil, and cool to see the NASCAR paddock all stop and watch Josef lapping,” IndyCar President Jay Frye told RACER.
“Who knows what’s next, but we’re all racers and loved seeing an Indy car on the Roval.
"But we don’t have anything we’re working on with them to race there.”
McLaren eyeing return to Mercedes power (2nd Update)
McLaren used to blame Honda and Renault, now they can blame Mercedes
UPDATE This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' with today's announcement.
09/27/19 The word in Sochi is that there will soon be a major announcement with McLaren ending its relationship with Renault and moving to become a customer of Mercedes, its long-time partner in the 1990s and 2000s, starting in 2021 and going to at least 2024. The logic behind the move is pretty sensible. If you cannot have a factory engine of your own, the best thing to have is a customer supply of the best available engines.
When Scott Dixon tested visibility in the simulator it was to make sure the Halo portion of the Aeroscreen did not impair visibility on banked tracks. But notice it was tested without the windscreen in place. Time will tell if drivers love or hate it.
There is still a very real possibility that Indycar could nix the Aeroscreen, especially of the curved screen results in distorted vision for the driver.
Ultimately, the decision to go with or without the Aeroscreen for 2020 will come with more testing, input from the teams and drivers, and the executives at IndyCar.
“It was a new experience with the aero competition on our prior car redesign,” IndyCar Chairman Mark Miles said. “And what I learned was that changes can negative unintended consequences. It’s never easy. And that’s my mindset around any changes. But we have great people working on this. They’ve been working on it for a long time. Red Bull brought a huge amount of expertise and experience and have been on-point with this. They’re really good at what they do. We’ll have a better idea when it’s deployed and there are no unintended consequences. But it’s very promising.”
Three years ago, Laguna Seca was going out of business, but it appears IndyCar is about to make Laguna Seca a success again - in a big way. After a 15-year hiatus, the open-wheel racing series returns this week for the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey. More on attendance numbers in a minute.
“There were a certain amount of requirements to bring the track up to current safety standards from when the last time IndyCar was here,” said Timothy McGrane, the facility’s CEO. “When IndyCar came out in the fall, there were a number of areas they required us to install safety fencing. That was by far the biggest part of the upgrade project.”
The morning practice saw most teams sitting in the pits waiting for the clock to countdown the 45 minute session. With the Firestone primary tires falling off after only 5 laps, most teams were not wasting the precious rubber on the practice session. It will be interesting to see how the alternate (red) tires do in the afternoon practice session.
We spoke with Michael Shank, who is seeking a new collaboration with an IndyCar team for next season. Shank replied that he should have everything in place in two weeks.
Ford Chip Ganassi Racing’s Ryan Briscoe, meanwhile, could find refuge at WTR next year, which could feature an all-new lineup in the Konica Minolta-sponsored Cadillac DPi.
The Australian open-wheel turned sports car ace, who is managed by WTR co-owner Max Angelelli (who is undergoing treatment for cancer), is understood to be in contention for one of the full-season seats.
Renger van der Zande, who has been with the team since 2018, does not currently have a contract with the Wayne Taylor team for next year, but Wayne Taylor says he and son Jordon will be the drivers.
So a lot of conflicting reports out of Laguna Seca this weekend.
Spirit of Daytona Racing could make its return to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, with a customer Mazda DPi program reportedly currently under discussion for 2020.
Multiple sources have confirmed to Sportscar365 that the Troy Flis-owned team, which has been absent from top-level IMSA competition for more than a year, is working to field a Mazda RT24-P.
It would mark the first customer Mazda DPi, following the recent success by the Multimatic-built prototype, which enters this weekend’s round at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca on a three-race win streak.
Johnson thinks an IndyCar might suit his style better. He's in for a rude awakening.
44-year old Jimmie Johnson can't win in NASCAR anymore so now he's thinking maybe he can do IndyCar. Johnson appeared on the 273rdedition of the Dale Jr. Download podcast and admitted that testing a McLaren F1 car last November in a ride-swap with Fernando Alonso wet his appetite for road course racing in open-wheel or sportscars.
“I don’t feel like it’s my strong suit but … when I’ve been in cars with more downforce and more braking ability, I’ve been much more competitive, like, when I’ve been in sportscars.
“I just think my driving style isn’t ideal for a big heavy Cup car. And hopping in that Formula 1 car and having that chance to match Fernando’s lap time as I did in Bahrain, was an eye-opening experience for me. Like maybe on a road course, those types of car fit my style a little bit more.”
One lonely fan. In some places the crowd was non-existent
UPDATE IMS president Doug Boles said yesterday that advance ticket sales had "topped 50,000 for the 235,000-seat venue.
That appeared to be about all they had by the looks of the grandstands.
Typical Brickyard 400 crowd
09/02/19 IMS says it is flat in ticket sales and expecting at least 50,000 in attendance for next week's Brickyard 400, including both general admission and hospitality.
With 250,000 seats or so, and at least half of the 50,000 people in suites and General Admission, the grandstands will look very barren and you'll be able to shoot a cannon into the grandstands and not hit anyone.
Leclerc screwed Vettel in Monza qualifying. Vettel gave Leclerc a tow to set fast time in the first run, but stayed behind Vettel in the 2nd run until it was too late to cross the line before time ran out
(GMM) Ferrari is reportedly working on a new contract for Charles Leclerc.
Many believe the momentum is clearly switching from current 'number 1' driver Sebastian Vettel to Leclerc, the 21-year-old Spa winner and Monza pole sitter.
At Monza, Vettel was vocally upset about having not been given a slipstream in Monza qualifying by Leclerc, as per a pre-session agreement.
"We have to clarify that internally," team boss Mattia Binotto told Sky Italia after qualifying.
"I understand his frustration, so we will talk with him and try to understand what we could have done differently."
Finally, IndyCar will have a properly designed race car. Aldo Costa, the greatest designer in F1 history, will move to Dallara in September
Rumor has it that the greatest designer in F1 history will design the 2022 IndyCar for Dallara.
Aldo Costa, born in Parma, Italy, has decided it's time for a new life chapter. Costa will leave the Mercedes F1 team at the end of September and in 2020 will join Italian chassis manufacturer Dallara as their new Chief Technical Officer.
Before joining Mercedes, he was Head of Design Office at Ferrari in 1996, part of the dominant squad that took six constructors’ titles between 1999 and 2004 in the Michael Schumacher era, and two more in 2007 and 2008.
Ocon to Renault, Hulkenberg to get axe(11th Update)
Hulkenberg during press conference Thursday
UPDATE At Thursday's Italian GP press conference dumped Renault driver Nico Hulkenberg has admitted he has ‘nothing concrete’ lined up for the 2020 Formula 1 season despite ongoing talks with other teams.
The highly rated German driver will be replaced as Daniel Ricciardo’s teammate at Renault by Frenchman Esteban Ocon, who will join the team following a sabbatical from competition.
The 32-year-old has been linked with a move to Haas for next season, with Romain Grosjean tipped as heading to Formula E, but AR1.com sources say he is going to Alfa Romeo.
Monza on verge of new five-year F1 contract (2nd Update)
UPDATE This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' today. The Italian Grand Prix will remains at Monza for another five years following the signing of a new contract.
Formula 1 CEO and chairman Chase Carey joined the president of the Automobile Club d’Italia on stage in Piazza del Duomo to announce the deal and sign the contract in front of more than 10,000 Ferrari fans.
“This is one of four Grands Prix that were part of the 1950 championship and still features in the calendar and along with the British Grand Prix, it is the only one to have been held every year since then,” noted Carey. “History, speed and passion are words that motorsport fans associate with Monza. The feeling one gets at this Grand Prix is truly unique, as is the circuit’s distinctive podium.
Axed Nico Hulkenberg has yet to score a podium in F1
UPDATE This rumor is downgraded to 'false' just like we predicted. Dr Helmut Marko has now ruled out Nico Hulkenberg for the second seat at Red Bull for 2020.
Earlier, while insisting that the outfit would prefer to choose between Alex Albon, Daniil Kvyat and Pierre Gasly to be Max Verstappen's next teammate, team boss Christian Horner admitted Hulkenberg was a "conservative" choice that could not be ruled out.
But when asked at Spa by Auto Bild if Renault refugee Hulkenberg actually has a chance, Red Bull driver program boss Marko answered bluntly: "No."
McLaren agreement with SPM IndyCar essentially a rent-a-car deal
McLaren will have SPM prepare their car for the Indy 500 and have 0.00% ownership of the team
As we have speculated previously, McLaren is NOT coming to IndyCar as a team, but is coming to IndyCar in name only. All the fake news around McLaren coming to IndyCar has been just that, 'fake propaganda.'
Sam Schmidt told Autosport "Yes - and that's another thing that seems to have got lost or out of control in the media since the McLaren announcement.
Who will replace James Hinchcliffe as Honda Spokesperson? (Update)
Hinchcliffe to lose his 2 Honda gigs
UPDATE According to Autosport James Hinchcliffe will stay on with what will become McLaren Racing SP into the 2020 IndyCar Series season so he is definitely out as a Honda spokesperson.
"We're very pleased James is staying, absolutely," Sam Schmidt told Autosport, "although I'm not sure why there was all that speculation.
"Yes, it was unfortunate that we had to change engine supplier - unfortunate for us, unfortunate for him - but we had to make a change in order to join forces with McLaren, and the pros far exceeded the cons there.
F1 considering qualifying race experiment for 2020
Abiteboul in favor of trying it
(GMM) F1 is toying with the idea of experimenting with the race format in 2020.
The sport's all-new era is not arriving until 2021, but sporting boss Ross Brawn said the stable regulations for 2020 gives Liberty the freedom to experiment at one or two races next year.
One idea is a race for qualifying rather than the existing knockout format.
"If we are to improve the show there is nothing wrong with trying and seeing how it goes, get some fan feedback, and if people like it and it improves the show, I'm all for it," said Racing Point boss Otmar Szafnauer.
Herta and Steinbrenner to move to Andretti, not Meyer Shank (2nd Update)
Michael Andretti to make room for Herta and run a 5th car
UPDATE Team owner Michael Andretti is confident a fifth entry for Andretti Autosport in 2020 will likely include Colton Herta moving over from Harding as previously rumored, with George Michael Steinbrenner, IV moving too.
We originally rumored that they would be a Satellite Team with Meyer Shank Racing, and of course we now know that is not the plan. However, we hear that Meyer Shank Racing could very well become a Satellite team to Andretti Autosport.
With AutoNation backing both Andretti Autosport and Meyer Shank Racing and driver Jack Harvey, and Meyer Shank being a previous satellite team to Andretti, all the stars are aligning for that to happen again.
Richmond to replace Pocono IndyCar race (9th Update)
UPDATE Richmond Raceway will indeed be on the 2020 IndyCar schedule, per an Adam Stern source with direct knowledge of the move, and the track has a press conference slated for next Tuesday.
08/20/19 Brian Carroccio here.
I caught up with Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles about an hour before the green flag for Sunday’s ABC Supply 500 at Pocono Raceway. My goal in speaking with Miles was to get the series’ view on where matters stood between INDYCAR and Pocono with regard to continuing the event. I approached him within the context that it had been reported by this outlet (see below) and others that INDYCAR had been somewhat lukewarm with respect to inquires from Pocono Raceway to continue the event.
SPIED: Could This Be The 800 HP Plug-In Hybrid Chevrolet C8 Corvette?
What are those orange connectors sticking out of the front hoods?
It is no secret that there will be at least one hybrid version of the new Chevrolet Corvette. Could it be hiding under those prototypes?
TFLnow recently stumbled upon a pair of C8 Corvette prototypes bathed in camouflage. This is quite interesting, because Chevrolet has already launched the car officially since mid-July. Are those some of the test mules used previously, or something more?
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