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A rumor rated as 'speculation' is one that has no supporting information
A rumor rated as 'strong' is one where we received information from more than one source.
A rumor rated as 'fact' is one that has proven to be true
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These rumors are just that, RUMORS, and are not to be taken as 'fact' unless so noted.  Please visit our Hot News page for news.  If you have a rumor, or can supply more information about one listed here, e-mail us with as much supporting information as possible and we may post it. User Agreement and Disclaimer. Newer rumors supersede older ones of the same topic.  Go to our forums to discuss any rumor.
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DATE News (chronologically)
10/14/14
irl

Honda Indy Toronto on move to Mosport: Sources (3rd Update) UPDATE #3 This rumor is downgraded to 'false' today.  Next year's Toronto race will not be moved to Mosport.

08/30/14
Mario Andretti surveys his Brawner Hawk after crashing in qualifying in the 1967 IndyCar race at Mosport
This rumor is upgraded to 'strong' today. There will be a Verizon IndyCar Series Honda Indy Toronto next year. It just won’t be in Toronto.

Green Savoree Racing Promotions revealed on Friday that they are in talks to move the race to Canadian Tire Motorsports Park for the 2015 edition of the summer festival of speed.

The reason for the move: The PanAm Games will take over the Exhibition Place temporary street course for virtually all of July and most of August next summer.

Read more & Comment...
10/14/14
irl

Update: Team Penske tests first IndyCar Body Kit (Update 1) UPDATE It appears, we had things a little off with our original rumor.

Last week, we were of the belief that Team Penske was testing on the Homestead-Miami Speedway road course, as we heard they were off to 'Texas' this week for further testing of the new Chevrolet aero-kits.

However, the latest word is the team ran on the Homestead oval last week. And while they are in the state of Texas, they are not at TMS apparently, rather Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas.

We will continue to follow the story.

Read more & Comment...
10/14/14
nassprint

Could Tony Stewart's actions at Charlotte impact possible civil suit?
Brad Keselowski, Matt Kenseth, and Denny Hamlin‘s roles in Saturday night's post-race melee at Charlotte Motor Speedway are already well-defined.

But Tony Stewart also was involved in this particular sequence of events. After Keselowski and Hamlin had their skirmish on the track during the cool-down lap, Keselowski then ran into both Kenseth and Stewart near the entrance to pit road.

Stewart responded by backing his No. 14 Chevrolet into Keselowski's No. 2 Ford, crushing in the front end of the latter’s (Sky) Blue Deuce. That decision may come back to haunt him.

Read more & Comment...
10/14/14
f1

Mercedes spent $522m to win 2014 F1 title
Mercedes paid big money to make their car in a class of its own in 2014
The age old question, 'how fast do you want to go'? Was answered with the usual 'how much do you want to spend' in F1 this year. Mercedes have revealed they boosted spending on Formula One by 17 per cent to a record $522 million this year which won them the constructors' championship and put Lewis Hamilton on track to win the drivers' title.

Hamilton won Sunday's Russian Grand Prix, extending his lead over his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg to 17 points and the victory handed Mercedes the constructors' title for the first time in the 64-year history of the sport. The secret to their success has been turbo-charging their spending.

Company documents for Mercedes' F1 engine manufacturing division in Northamptonshire show that in 2013 they spent $214 million, which is nearly double the budget they had just three years earlier. Their costs now come to nearly double those of the sport's lowest-spending team, Caterham.

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10/14/14
f1

Has Ferrari targeted Hamilton as Alonso's replacement? (Update) UPDATE This rumor is downgraded to 'false' because Hamilton will not leave Mercedes when they have such a dominant car. Plus Vettel is almost certainly going to Ferrari, not Hamilton.

09/26/14
Hamilton to replace Alonso at Ferrari?
Rumors continue to circulate regarding Fernando Alonso’s future plans, and the consensus is that in the next few days we will learn a bit more about how the 2015 entry list will look.

Alonso has been linked with McLaren and Honda for months, and his name has obvious appeal to the Japanese manufacturer, which sells a lot of motorbikes in Spain.

It's absolutely imperative that McLaren has a star on board, and with due respect to Jenson Button, the paddock acknowledges that Honda is working from a very short list, headed by Fernando, Lewis Hamilton, and Sebastian Vettel.

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10/13/14
f1

Will Ferrari get its 'Super Team' of Alonso, Vettel, and Raikkonen?
A reader writes, Dear AR1.com, I may have thought of the answer to the puzzle of who is driving where in F-1 next year. This answer tracks with the several comments already made, e.g.,

1.Christian Horner's pronouncement that Vettel is going to Ferrari, and

2.Raikkonen's comments that he isn't at all worried about his ride with Ferrari, and would be happy to have Vettel as a teammate, and

3. Particularly, with Alonso's comments to Will Buxton that he [Alonso] will not have a Mercedes engine next year, plus when people learn the answer, they will say, [something like] "Oh, of course."

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10/13/14
f1

Briatore eyes Lotus switch for Ferrari's Alonso (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 Now that Lotus is going to be using Mercedes engines next year (the first piece of this rumor) supposedly paid for by Canadian Billionaire Lawrence Stroll, is it possible Alonso is headed to Lotus so he has the superior Mercedes engines behind him?  He recently denied he will have Mercedes power next year, but that could be a decoy.

09/25/14 (GMM)  Lotus team owner Gerard Lopez, and the Fernando Alonso-connected Flavio Briatore, have played down the latest explosive F1 rumors.

Germany's Sport Bild claimed this week that Briatore, the former boss at Enstone and still playing a guiding role in protege Alonso's career, is behind an audacious bid to pave the way for a title bid at Lotus.

It all ties in not only with the rumors Alonso and Ferrari are in the obvious throes of divorce, but that Canadian retail billionaire Lawrence Stroll is interested in buying Lotus and paying for the struggling team's switch to F1-leading Mercedes power.

Faced with all the rumors, Luxembourger Lopez, the current Lotus team owner, is quoted by Auto Motor und Sport: "I read all about it for the first time on the internet yesterday."

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10/12/14
f1

Hamilton leaving Mercedes for McLaren? (3rd Update) UPDATE #3 This rumor is downgraded to 'false' today.  Fernando Alonso confirmed he will not have Mercedes power next year, which means he's either going to McLaren-Honda or staying at Ferrari.  It also means Lewis Hamilton is likely staying with the factory Mercedes team.  Why would he leave the team with a car/engine so good no one else can beat them?  With the engine freeze in place, he's almost guaranteed the F1 title this year, next year and perhaps 2017 as well.

10/10/14
Is it Ecclestone behind the moves in F1 of the top-3 drivers, Vettel to Ferrari, Hamilton to McLaren and Alonso to Mercedes?
(GMM)  F1's top three drivers are all now caught up in the most intriguing 'silly season' for some time.

As the Suzuka paddock was packed up mere days ago, it seemed almost certain that Sebastian Vettel is headed to Ferrari next year to replace the McLaren-bound Fernando Alonso.

But then a third top driver entered the speculative games: Lewis Hamilton.

Rumors suggest Ron Dennis' former protege recently visited Woking, where a deal to vacate his seat at Mercedes may have been discussed or struck.

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10/12/14
f1

Alonso eyes Williams as sabbatical 'risk' grows (Update) UPDATE This rumor is downgraded to 'false' today.  Fernando Alonso dropped a big hint about his future after Sunday's Russian grand prix.

Wild rumors in the past few days suggested the Spaniard was working on a sensational deal to join dominant Mercedes next year, in Lewis Hamilton's place.

"This is all bullshit," Mercedes boss Toto Wolff told German television Sky at Sochi.

"We have a driver lineup for next year," he said, referring to Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.

"We just don't want to go into contract negotiations (with Hamilton beyond 2015) during this intense phase, which is why there are these rumors.

"But we have said that at the end of the season, we will get together and renew the contract," Wolff insisted.

Read more & Comment...
10/11/14
f1

Alonso to take Movistar to next team
Alonso to take Movistar and probably Santander to next team
(GMM) A week after Sebastian Vettel blew the 'silly season' wide open, little else is clear about the shape of the upper part of the grid for 2015.

Despite rumors he might be McLaren-bound, however, paddock sources insist Vettel is definitely headed to Ferrari.

The next step for the man he is set to replace, however - Fernando Alonso - is much less clear.

What is obvious is that there is plenty of movement in the background, which might explain the latest rumors linking Lewis Hamilton with the exit at Mercedes.

Read more & Comment...
10/09/14
f1

Lotus F1 Team Considering Switch To Mercedes Power In 2015 (4th Update) UPDATE #4 This rumor is again upgraded to 'fact' with today's official announcement.

07/05/14 This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' today. Mercedes has agreed to supply Lotus with Formula 1 engines from 2015 in a move that should help the team's current supplier Renault focus on Red Bull, AUTOSPORT reports.

Renault's head of trackside operation Remi Taffin said: "I think it [working with three teams] makes life easier for Red Bull to go towards what they wish, and there is no downside for anyone.

"The gap between these teams and how they operate, if the big one [Red Bull] is going forward, maybe at a higher rate, I think it will pull the rest up."

Taffin also made it clear that there would be no budget issues even though Renault could lose income from the Lotus deal.

Read more & Comment...
10/09/14
irl

Foyt to open 2nd race shop in Indianapolis (Update) UPDATE
AJ Foyt (L) signs the papers
This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' today. The Speedway Indiana Redevelopment Commission and AJ Foyt Racing signed agreements for purchase and renovation of the 45,000 square-foot building located at 1180 Main St., Speedway.

The new location will serve as an expansion of AJ Foyt Racing's team offices in Waller, Texas. The team will begin renovations with a brick facade to the north side of the building and installation of windows on the south side.

As auto racing's most inspiring champion, A.J. Foyt is the record winner of 67 IndyCar races, and seven national championships. He is also the only driver to win all three major motorsport races: the Indianapolis 500, the Daytona 500 and the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Read more & Comment...
10/08/14
f1
automotive

Ferrari may need yet another new president after 2018
(GMM)  Ferrari could be looking for yet another new president in a few years time.

Sergio Marchionne, also the Fiat-Chrysler chief, is officially taking over from Ferrari's Luca di Montezemolo next Monday.

But the 62-year-old has now told Bloomberg that he will "undoubtedly do something else" after the end of 2018.

"I am not going to do any more turnarounds.  I'm done; let some of the young punks do it," he said.

Comment
10/07/14
irl

Hinchcliffe to Schmidt team on Tuesday (Update) UPDATE This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' with today's announcement.

10/02/14 Look for James Hinchcliffe to be announced driving for the Sam Schmidt IndyCar team in 2015 and his sponsor United Fiber & Data is rumored to be coming as well.  If true that means we'll have another year of the UFD grid girls in the paddock.

Comment
10/07/14
f1

Not just Sainz in running for Kvyat seat
(GMM)  Carlos Sainz Jr is not the only candidate to replace the Red Bull-bound Daniil Kvyat at Toro Rosso next year.

Christian Horner and Dr Helmut Marko have already admitted the talented Spaniard, the current cream of Red Bull's famed young driver program, is the frontrunner for the newly-vacant seat in the wake of Sebastian Vettel's shock news.

But there may be other frontrunners too.

Read more & Comment...
10/07/14
f1

Stroll to buy into McLaren?
Lawrence Stroll
(GMM)  McLaren has denied claims Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll may be looking at buying into the British team.

Italy's Autosprint reports that after Stroll recently held ultimately failed talks with Marussia and Sauber, he may then have been approached by McLaren shareholder Mansour Ojjeh.

The report follows McLaren slamming as "complete and utter nonsense" rumors last week that Gerhard Berger was being linked with a role at the team.

Read more & Comment...
10/06/14
nassprint

JGR to shuffle Crew Chiefs in 2015
According to AR1.com sources, Joe Gibbs Racing will be making the following Crew Chief changes in 2015:

Adam Stephens to the 318 with Kyle Busch
Dave Rogers to the #11 with Denny Hamlin
Darian Grubb to the #19 with Carl Edwards
Jason Ratcliff stays on #20 with Matt Kenseth

Comment
10/06/14
nassprint

Hornish Jr. to RPM's #9 to replace Ambrose
The rumored replacement for Marcos Ambrose in the Richard Petty Motorsports #9 Ford ride for next year now looks like it will be Sam Hornish Jr. Speculation is the former Indy Car star and current Joe Gibbs Racing part-time Nationwide Series driver will get another shot at a full-time Sprint Cup ride next year when Ambrose returns to his native Australia. Motor Racing Network

Comment
10/05/14
f1

Vettel masterminded massive $64M per year Ferrari deal (Update) UPDATE Vettel "is thought to have been offered a three-year deal" worth $64M a season, not the $80M originally rumored, which "will still make him the highest paid driver in the sport's history."

10/05/14
Screwed over by Renault and Red Bull this year, Vettel headed to Ferrari a rich man
(GMM)  The word at Suzuka on race-day Sunday is that Sebastian Vettel pulled off a masterstroke.

Not only has he exposed Fernando Alonso's Ferrari split and revealed that Red Bull's doors are closed to the Spaniard, the reigning world champion has reportedly single-handedly brokered perhaps the most lucrative deal in F1 history.

Famously, Vettel is one of those rare drivers who negotiates his own deals without the help of a manager.

"I have a head and a brain," the 27-year-old smiled on Saturday after his shock Red Bull exit was announced.

Incredibly, British newspapers claim Vettel's new Ferrari deal - which is yet to be announced - could be worth up to an astonishing $80 million per year, making him easily the highest paid driver in F1.

Read more & Comment...
10/05/14
nassprint

Earnhardt Jr. to race for his own team in the future
Earnhardt Jr. getting tired being beat by his faster Hendrick Motorsports teammates?
Dale Earnhardt Jr. met with members of the media at Kansas Speedway and discussed many topics, including:

Q) WHAT ARE YOUR HOPES AND FUTURE PLANS FOR JR MOTORSPORTS WITH REGAN SMITH STAYING AT LEAST THROUGH NEXT YEAR? HAVE YOUR PLANS CHANGED? IS IT EVOLVING AND WILL WE SEE DIFFERENT THINGS THERE? WHAT DO YOU LOOK AHEAD TOWARDS?
Earnhardt Jr.: "Well the Nationwide Series is a year to year deal. Our sponsorships are short term compared to the Cup level so our relationships with our drivers have to fit in those windows as well. That is nothing unusual about going year to year or every two years with a driver contract. We do the same thing with the sponsorships as well sometimes. We would love to have longer agreements, but that just depends on the money just like every other piece of the puzzle. The money really has a big effect on it. I am really happy that we are basically going to have a carbon copy of what we did this year next season. We have had a lot of success and I think we can build on that and everything is going to stay in place and we are going to go on down the road. On down the road is just 12 months. When you talk about the Cup Series you look a little further. I would like to race for that company one day, so I hope to keep it healthy until that opportunity presents itself. Whenever I'm done Cup racing to jump in a Nationwide car and do that for a couple of years in my own shop."

Comment
10/05/14
f1

McLaren planning private Honda tests
Honda F1 engine
(GMM)  McLaren and Honda could be planning to run an interim F1 car outside the sport's officially-sanctioned test dates.

It has emerged at Suzuka that the returning Japanese carmaker's new turbo V6 is being mated to an "experimental vehicle" that according to Germany's Auto Motor und Sport is called MP4-29H.

The 'H' supposedly stands for Honda, meaning this year's Mercedes-powered McLaren is being modified to accommodate the different Honda installation.

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10/04/14
f1

McLaren bids $82m for Alonso
Alonso to McLaren: What you want to pay me $82m per year?  Of course I'll take it.
Fernando Alonso is in talks over his future with Ferrari, the Italian giants said yesterday as McLaren dangled a reported 50 million ($82 million) deal to lure away the Spaniard.

"At this moment, in Japan, Alonso is discussing his future at Ferrari," said its president, Luca di Montezemolo.

Double world champion Alonso has been linked with a return to McLaren either next year or in 2016 with Spanish press reports claiming his former employers were preparing a 50 million deal, around 30 million more than his present contract.

"He has had some fantastic races for us over the last four years," said Montezemolo.

"Our team manager Marco Mattiacci has talked to him about the future and I am sure we will find the best solution for him and for Ferrari, whatever that may be."

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10/03/14
irl

IndyCar Iowa race to be Saturday June 20?
Your 2014 Iowa podium.
Expect the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series race at Iowa Speedway to be Saturday evening June 20th. According to Iowa Speedway President Jimmy Small, the IndyCars are likely going to share a date again with the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. And the Trucks are scheduled to run the 7/8-mile banked oval in Newton, Iowa on Friday evening June 19th. So expect the Iowa Corn Indy Presented by DEKALB to be run the following Saturday evening.

It will be the ninth time the IndyCar Series has raced at Iowa Speedway. In 2014, Ryan Hunter-Reay took victory, with Josef Newgarden second and Tony Kanaan third.

AR1 Staff

Comment
10/03/14
f1

Belgium GP set for 2018 deal
(GMM)  Far away from the Suzuka paddock, the F1 world heard promising news on Friday from Belgium.

L'Echo newspaper reported that Bernie Ecclestone has agreed to extend the grand prix deal for the popular and fabled Spa-Francorchamps circuit until 2018.

The reporter cited sources close to the deal as saying it "looks good for an extension of three years".

Comment
10/02/14
f1

Caterham F1 team close to closing doors after bailiffs seize F1 equipment? (3rd Update) UPDATE #3 Staff at Caterham F1's Oxfordshire base "fear the team will leave" its U.K. factory at the end of the season, "or worse collapse amid the increasingly precarious financial climate" for F1's smallest teams, according to Daniel Johnson of the London TELEGRAPH.

Caterham sources said that "work on next year's car at Leafield had 'ground to a halt,' with difficulties buying in materials for construction."

Their concern is that the 180 jobs at the team’s factory "will be lost" as Colin Kolles -- the "former Spyker boss who masterminded the takeover from Tony Fernandes a few months ago" -- relocates the operation to continental Europe, "most likely Germany."

Incoming team principal Manfredi Ravetto "insists that the 2015 car is being tested at Toyota's wind tunnel in Cologne, Germany, and it is their intention to be on the grid next season." The alarm at Caterham "comes as the future of several teams at the back of the grid remains uncertain."

Read more & Comment...
10/01/14
track news
f1

Nurburgring buyout deal set to collapse
Nurburgring latest track to be bankrupted by high F1 fees
(GMM)  The fate of the German grand prix venue at the fabled Nurburgring is once again in serious doubt.

Recently, we reported that after the embattled circuit was bought for a reported EUR 77 million, it was in the throes of promising talks with Bernie Ecclestone over a new long-term F1 race contract.

But it then emerged in late August that the buyer, a Dusseldorf company called Capricorn, had missed the deadline on its latest due payment to the Rhineland-Palatinate state.

"We still expect the sale to go ahead," a spokesman for the financial recovery experts in charge of the Nurburgring insolvency said at the time.

Read more & Comment...
09/30/14
irl

Beatriz to run Brasilia, Indy?
Ana Beatriz at Barber in 2013.
The Verizon IndyCar Series recently announced they will be returning to Brazil in 2015, with a race at Autodromo Internacional Nelson Piquet in Brasilia. And just as AutoRacing1 rumored that former IndyCar driver Vitor Meira may be competing in the event, AR1's Brazilian sources are telling us Ana Beatriz may be running not only the Brasilia round, but quite possibly the Indianapolis 500 as well.

A two-time Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, 'Bia', made 29 IndyCar starts from 2010-2013. She scored a best finish of 11th at Toronto in 2011 with Dreyer and Reinbold Racing. Her most recent IndyCar race was at Iowa in 2013, when she finished 22nd driving for Dale Coyne Racing. During 2014, Beatriz has been running Stock Car Brasil, and currently sits 29th in the standings.

And who might Bia drive for next year at Brasilia and Indy?

Read more & Comment...
09/30/14
nassprint

Vickers to the No. 99?
According to AR1.com sources, Brian Vickers is in the running to drive the No. 99 Roush Fenway Ford in 2015 that was recently vacated by Carl Edwards.

Comment
09/30/14
irl
uscc

Penske and Honda to SportsCars in 2016?
Simon Pagenaud has been smiling a lot of late.
Yesterday, Team Penske announced the signing of Simon Pagenaud as part of a 4-car Verizon IndyCar Series effort for 2015. The Frenchman will campaign the #22 Dallara Chevrolet, joining reigning series champion Will Power and Indianapolis 500 winners Juan Pablo Montoya and Helio Castroneves in what promises to be a rather formidable four-car stable.

And while the news of Pagenaud to Penske had been rumored, the official announcement that Team Penske would in fact run 4 full-time cars for the first time in its celebrated history came as a surprise to many. Well, AutoRacing1 has learned there is likely a lot more to the hiring of Pagenaud than meets the eye?

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09/30/14
f1

Volcano could affect Japan GP
(GMM)  An erupting volcano is threatening to affect this weekend's Japanese grand prix.

On Saturday, Mount Ontake - located less than 200 kilometers from the Suzuka circuit - erupted, killing dozens.

Smoke, ash and poisonous gas is still billowing from the volcano, and Germany's Bild newspaper reports that just as F1 personnel are flying into Japan, many flights about being delayed or diverted.

"Race organizers hope that all the drivers will have arrived in time for the first practice session on Friday," said correspondent Nicola Pohl.

Comment
09/30/14
f1

Alonso rumors keep shifting into higher gear (Update) UPDATE (GMM)  The high uncertainty surrounding Fernando Alonso's future could be connected with rumors emerging from the Honda camp.

It is well known that the Japanese manufacturer, returning to F1 with McLaren next year, has made an audacious bid to lure the highly rated and increasingly frustrated Spaniard from Ferrari.

In the past few days, the extent of the disintegrating relations between Alonso and Ferrari have become clear, making it seem more and more likely that he will leave the fabled but crisis-struck Maranello camp.

It has stirred real fears that McLaren could dump its protege Kevin Magnussen after just a single season, with many regarding Alonso alongside fellow champion Jenson Button as an ideal pairing to steer the early direction of the works Honda project.

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09/29/14
irl

2015 IndyCar Silly Season
Our 2015 IndyCar Silly Season page has been updated with all the latest rumors of who may drive where in 2015.

Comment
09/29/14
irl

Pagenaud to replace Hinchcliffe at Andretti (Update - No) UPDATE This rumor is downgraded to 'false' with news today that Pagenaud has signed with Penske. Hinchcliffe could go to Schmidt Peterson as co-owner Peterson is also Canadian, but Andretti may have an option on Hinchcliffe until October to see if he can secure sponsorship.

07/20/14
James Hinchcliffe leaving Andretti opens the door for Pagenaud
After six races in 23 days, IndyCar will take this week off before gathering Aug. 2-3 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Much could happen in the meantime.

Andretti Autosport owner Michael Andretti confirmed Sunday that it's possible an Aug. 1 deadline passes without having James Hinchcliffe signed for 2015, allowing the driver to talk to other teams.

The team has a one-year option on the Canadian driver, but it hinges on the sponsorship being in place, and it's currently not, Andretti said.

Read more & Comment...
09/29/14
il

8Star set to run Indy Lights team in 2015 (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 This rumor is now 'fact'. In an expansion of its newly-established young driver academy, 8Star Motorsports has committed to an order for the new Dallara IL-15 open-wheeler for its 2015 campaign in the Indy Lights Series Presented by Cooper Tires.

Sanctioned by IndyCar and operated by Andersen Promotions, Indy Lights is the final stage of the Mazda Road to Indy driver development program – a three-phase ladder system that includes the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda and the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires.

The Cooper Tires-backed Indy Lights Series is set to undergo significant changes in 2015, with the advent of the Dallara IL-15 open-wheeler. The new chassis, tire and engine formula has been created to enhance the growth and value of Indy Lights and a top priority for the series is to provide a cost-effective platform for teams, drivers and partners.

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09/29/14
irl

Pagenaud to Penske? (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' with today's announcement. We will also update our IndyCar Silly season page soon.

09/24/14 IndyCar's hottest free agent has made a decision about his 2015 employment; he just isn't ready to reveal it.

But Simon Pagenaud, who has finished in the top five of the standings each of the past two seasons, said Tuesday that the news will be coming soon. Best guess as to when: After his contract with Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Motorsports expires Oct. 1.

"Yes, I've made a decision," Pagenaud said during a break in Firestone testing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. "But (the contract) is not fully done yet."

Indianapolis 500 champion Ryan Hunter-Reay, one of the four Verizon IndyCar Series drivers testing at IMS, doesn't expect the 30-year-old Frenchman to return to Sam Schmidt's team for a fourth consecutive year.

"He's telling everyone he's gone," Hunter-Reay said.

Read more & Comment...
09/26/14
nassprint

Tony Stewart giving up on Sprint Car racing
For Tony Stewart, there was no greater joy than escaping his everyday life and climbing behind the wheel of a sprint car. He loves the feel, the way they drive, the purity he finds at all the tiny dirt tracks across the country.

When he broke his leg racing his sprint car a year ago, an injury that sidelined him for six months, he was almost defiant in his desire to never give up his hobby. But after the death of Kevin Ward Jr., who was killed when Stewart's car struck him as Ward walked on an upstate New York dirt track on Aug. 9, Stewart may never get back in a sprint car.

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09/26/14
track news

Dover to install lights (Update) UPDATE This rumor is downgraded to 'false.' "We thought people would think that but didn't think you'd be first! It's actually for a new catch fence we're installing in 2015." Dover PR

09/26/14 Could night racing at Dover International Speedway become a reality? We have no idea, but Dale Earnhardt Jr. sure did spot something interesting on Thursday. Per Dale Earnhardt Jr's twitter: "I see foundations for light poles." There hasn't been any kind of announcement from the track to suggest that night racing is in Dover's immediate future. FoxSports

Comment
09/26/14
f1

Brabham team could return to Formula 1
Mario Andretti (Lotus) takes the lead at the start of the 1978 Swedish GP with Niki Lauda right behind in the Brabham fan-car
The Brabham name will make its racing return by entering the World Endurance Championship (WEC) next year, the intended first step in a journey back to the top echelon of motorsport, Formula 1.

The overall program is being masterminded by ex-Grand Prix driver David Brabham, the youngest son of three-time Formula 1 World Champion Sir Jack Brabham, who passed away aged 88 earlier this year.

"I've always wanted to see the Brabham name back in F1," Brabham told British newspaper The Independent.

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09/26/14
f1

Cosworth eyes F1 return with affordable V6
Will Kevin Kalkhoven take Cosworth back into F1 instead of IndyCar?
(GMM)  Cosworth could be eyeing a return to formula one, with the support of none other than Bernie Ecclestone.

Although the expensive new engine rules and a lack of customers sent the British company off the grid at the end of last year, Cosworth announced recently it is setting up a new manufacturing centre at its Northampton base.

The company confirmed that the facility, to "deliver the next generation of automotive internal combustion engines", is bolstered by a British government grant.

And according to Speed Week, there may even be an F1 component to Cosworth's next plans.

Read more & Comment...
09/24/14
nassprint

Truex out of the #83 ride?
Ryan Truex's run in the #83 Burger King/Borla Exhaust Toyota appears to have come to an end, after BK Racing replaced the New Jersey native with former Camping World Truck Series champion Travis Kvapil last weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Sources within the team said the change stemmed from unhappiness with the level of feedback received from Truex. He is not expected to return to the car this season. Messages left with BK Racing officials seeking comment were not immediately returned. Godfather Motorsports

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09/24/14
f1

Honda plans to charm Alonso at Suzuka (Update) UPDATE Honda are reportedly willing to fork out 30 million euro to get Fernando Alonso out of his Ferrari contract and lure him to McLaren.

McLaren Group CEO Ron Dennis has openly admitted that he would love to re-sign Alonso for the 2015 season when their partnership with Honda comes into effect.

Despite constant denials from both Ferrari and Alonso that the two-time World Champion will remain at Maranello next year, the Spaniard's future remains one of the most-talked about subjects in the paddock.

The frustrations, though, are getting to Alonso and he lashed out in Singapore over the weekend, saying: "Sometimes it's sad when it comes from Italy, or they create these rumors for some strange purpose which is not helping Ferrari, which is why we're all here."

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09/24/14
f1
automotive

Agnelli nephew to be new Ferrari president
Andrea Agnelli next Ferrari President?
(GMM)  Ferrari could be set for yet another change right at the top of the Maranello marque.

The departure of long-time president Luca di Montezemolo recently, with Fiat Chrysler chairman Sergio Marchionne taking over, made huge media waves.

But it might not be the final act.

Recently, as the looming Montezemolo exit became reality, a member of the influential Agnelli family backed the controversial news.

Andrea Agnelli, whose uncle was the great Fiat figurehead Gianni Agnelli, had said it was "right" that Ferrari's efforts to improve "involves new people".

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09/23/14
f1

Korea eyes F1 return with Seoul night race
(GMM)  Korea is casting jealous eyes on the success of Singapore's city night race as it plans to return to the F1 calendar.

South Korea's first foray, at the desolate, highly unpopular and debt-making Yeongam circuit between 2010 and 2013, is now looked back upon as an unmitigated failure.

But Korean officials are now looking for a way back into F1, meeting with Bernie Ecclestone throughout the Singapore grand prix weekend.

Indeed, the publication Today reports that a Singapore-like city night race on the downtown streets of Seoul, the capital, is now on the cards for 2016.

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09/23/14
f1

Alonso tells Ferrari he wants to leave (4th Update) UPDATE #4
Alonso likely to be wearing different colors in 2015
(GMM)  Where before there was merely smoke, now there are the first obvious signs of fire.

Fernando Alonso's future with Ferrari is almost certainly in serious doubt.

Some Spanish media sources continue to insist that the frustrated Spaniard is not interested in leaving the crisis-struck Italian team for McLaren-Honda, or even reigning world champions Red Bull.

But dominant Mercedes could be another matter.

Still, the latest rumors suggest McLaren could now be heading towards a highly-experienced lineup of Alonso alongside Jenson Button to spearhead the new Honda era.

That would leave rookie Kevin Magnussen in the cold.

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09/22/14
f1

Alonso, Button rumors rumble on Monday
(GMM)  Even with much of the F1 world on the long-haul return to Europe, the silly season continued to churn on Monday after the Singapore grand prix.

Fernando Alonso is still the main character, even though he is technically under contract to Ferrari for 2015 and beyond.

But there is high speculation either the frustrated Spaniard can trigger a performance-related exit clause, or that McLaren's new works partner Honda is prepared to spend millions to simply break Alonso's contract and sign him up for 2015.

Italy's respected La Gazzetta dello Sport on Monday said Alonso has even now told Ferrari that he intends to leave.

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09/21/14
f1

Sauber, Lotus or Marussia team to be sold? (5th Update) UPDATE #5 Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll "will invest in F1," according to Roger Benoit of BLICK. The only remaining question is "what team will receive money." Stroll "has been in negotiations with Sauber and Lotus." Stroll's most important requirement is that his 16-year-old son Lance "will receive a driver seat in either team." Former Renault boss Flavio Briatore and F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone "advise Stroll to invest in Lotus." Former F1 driver Gerhard Berger "sees Sauber as the better investment." Stroll "himself knows that he would have more input at Sauber in terms of reorganizing the team and even regarding driver selection for '15." Sauber "is also in talks with a businessman from Singapore." Stroll "is expected to make a decision by the end of October" Blick

09/18/14
Lawrence Stroll
As reported by AR1.com back on September 8th (below),  Lawrence Stroll may now have moved his attention from Sauber to Marussia.

In the paddock at Monza recently, it was strongly rumored that the Canadian fashion industry billionaire and racing enthusiast was in detailed negotiations to buy financially embattled Sauber.

Rumors quickly followed, however, that the deal had collapsed at the final hurdle.

"Lawrence Stroll received a negative response from Peter Sauber and Monisha Kaltenborn regarding his offer to take over the Swiss team," said a report by Italiaracing.

But Stroll may now be switching his attention from one embattled Ferrari customer to the next, the Italian report added.

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09/21/14
nassprint

Hornish could be interested in #9 car
While [Sam Hornish's] competitive side yearns for a full-time NASCAR ride, he's also the married father of three and relishes his family time. Hornish has examined other possibilities and acknowledged that those have included the coming vacancy in Richard Petty Motorsports #9 car. But he said his next ride would have to be the right situation. He insists that he still has "a lot going on" between testing, public appearances and TV commentary on the IndyCar series. But until Hornish finds something that fits, he's happy learning things from a different perspective with JGR. "I can't tell you exactly what I want right now," said Hornish, who's trying to stay in shape as he considers his options.

"The perfect thing is not available. I'd like to be full time next year; I want to put myself in a good place with good opportunities, good people around it. That was one of the great things about being able to come to Joe Gibbs Racing, just to see how things are run a little bit differently," Hornish said. "For me, while a lot of people might have taken things harder, I just enjoyed the fact of getting a little bit of a new outlook on life and what's going on around me." Associated Press

Comment
09/18/14
f1

FIA could ease radio clampdown in Singapore
(GMM)  The FIA could back down over its newly-imposed radio communications ban.

It was the hot topic of controversial conversation in Singapore on Thursday, as the teams and drivers prepare for the rest of 2014 with tight restrictions on what they can and cannot say over the pit-to-car radio.

Then the team managers headed for their usual pre-race briefing with Charlie Whiting.

"It might be a long one," said Lotus' Alan Permane, according to Auto Motor und Sport.

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09/17/14
racing news

Anheuser-Busch prepares bid to buy rival Miller
The maker of Budweiser beer wants to buy the maker of Miller Lite.

Anheuser-Busch Inbev NV is preparing a bid to buy its rival SABMiller, according to news reports.

If the deal goes through, it would create a massive beer conglomerate of some of the most well-known beers, including Budweiser, Coors Light, Corona and Miller.

Comment
09/17/14
fe

40 million worldwide TV viewers for Formula E?
An estimated 40 million global TV viewers watched the inaugural Formula E race.
From Michelin Alley:

A spectacular race that went down the last corner, an enormous global audience, unique pit stops and an innovative tire solution that mirrors real world scenarios on the road – history was made this weekend at the world’s first ever fully-electric open-wheel race took place in Beijing.

The successful season opener of the FIA Formula E Championship was held on a spectacular temporary race track built around the city’s iconic Olympic ‘Bird’s Nest’ Stadium and was won by Audi Sport ABT’s Lucas di Grassi.

Some 40 million are believed to have watched the race worldwide on television with 75,000 attending on site and one billion social interactions recorded around the race.

The race was also unique in rather than drivers and teams changing tires during the race, they actually changed cars after expending the battery capacity in their racers.

“When it comes to energy efficient tires and responsible motorsport, Michelin has emerged as a pioneer,” Pascal Couasnon, Director of the Michelin Group’s Motorsport Department said.

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09/17/14
il
rti

$1.1 million to run Indy Lights in 2015?

AR1 hears it will cost over $1 million to run a full season Indy Lights program in 2015.

AutoRacing1 recently spoke with an organization that was looking at running a full season entry in the 2015 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires championship. This group did not take part in the 2014 season, but with the advent of the new Dallara IL-15 chassis thought the timing would be good to enter the series.

As for costs? They told us their estimated budget to do the program right was about $1.1 million.

AR1 Staff

Comment
09/16/14
irl

Merged Carpenter and Fisher-Hartman team to name Chevy (2nd Update) UPDATE #2 This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' as expected. The merger of Ed Carpenter Racing and Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing - a pair of Indianapolis-based Verizon IndyCar Series teams now known as CFH Racing - will work with Chevrolet in 2015, a senior team official confirmed Tuesday.

Formal confirmation will come in a Wednesday morning teleconference.

Ed Carpenter's team partnered with Chevrolet the past three seasons; in that time the team owned by Sarah Fisher and Wink Hartman worked with Honda.

CFH Racing will field two cars next season, the No. 67 driven by Josef Newgarden. Carpenter will co-drive the No. 20, although his partner has not been finalized as Mike Conway, who won two races in the recently completed season, mulls European options.

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09/16/14
v8

Ambrose to test before New Year
Marcos Ambrose could be back behind the wheel of a V8 Supercar before the end of the year.
Marcos Ambrose is plotting his first miles back behind the wheel of a V8 Supercar before the end of the year.

Following the announcement that Team Penske has bought a majority shareholding in DJR, Ambrose is looking to cut some test laps at media and corporate ride days in December.

DJR also has two private test days remaining in their season allocation of three and appears unlikely to run again without Ambrose.

"We plan on doing media rides and corporate rides and things like that," Ambrose told Speedcafe.com of getting pre-2015 mileage.

"It depends on whether DJR uses all their remaining test days before I get there.

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09/16/14
v8

Penske to switch manufacturers in 2016?
Roger Penske
This Speedcafe Australia article indicates that Roger Penske's new Australian V8 Supercar effort may have a different engine supplier in 2016. Penske, of course, will field a car for Marcos Ambrose in the Australian-based series beginning next season in conjunction with Dick Johnson Racing.

What exactly will Penske do? We don't know. But The Captain is forever in search of the 'Unfair Advantage,' and it seems his grand schemes and machinations have already more than begun Down Under. Here's the article....

Motor racing giant Roger Penske has not ruled out moving away from Ford after DJR Team Penske’s maiden V8 Supercars season, but cautions that he would need “a good deal” to switch brands.

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09/16/14
il
nnw

Kligerman to run Indy Lights?
Parker Kligerman
Former Team Penske NASCAR development driver Parker Kligerman took part in this past weekend's Chris Griffis Memorial Test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The 24-year-old Connecticut drove a Schmidt Peterson Motorsports entry and posted a time just three tenths slower than 2014 Pro Mazda Champion Spencer Pigot, who also tested for SPM.

Might we see Kligerman take part in a partial or full season Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires?

AR1 Staff

Comment
09/15/14
irl
il

Newgarden to run Indy Lights races in 2015?
Josef Newgarden is a big fan of the 2015 Indy Lights chassis. Might the young American contest a few Indy Lights races in 2015?
After testing the new Dallara IL-15 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires chassis over the past few days at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, CFH Racing's Josef Newgarden suggested that he would be interested in running both Indy Lights and IndyCar in 2015.

"I was excited because I heard a lot about it from other drivers and I really wanted to try it for myself. After experiencing it, I would really like to run both championships next year. I honestly would. If somehow we could work it out where I could run the Lights championship and IndyCar championship, I think it would be so much fun especially with a brand new car like this. It is such a proper race car and they did a really good job with it. The transition between the Lights and the Indy car are going to be really close and a lot of things that work for the guys in IndyCar are going to work for the guys in Lights. It's a perfect training ground. The cars are super similar and the guys are going to have fun with it. I'm excited for everything that is happening now in Indy Lights."

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09/15/14
track news
f1

Austin track, F1 race, in jeopardy of losing funding?
Could F1 race at COTA be in jeopardy?
When local organizers applied for the first installment of $250 million in state funding to bring Formula One car racing to Texas, a letter from race CEO Bernie Ecclestone was their first exhibit.

Ecclestone's London-based company, Formula One Management Ltd., had evaluated Circuit Events Local Organizing Committee's bid and selected Austin to host a race for the next 10 years, he wrote in a letter dated July 10, 2012.

The language was required by law. A state statute says that unless such a bid, or application, is filed with a "site selection committee" - in this case Formula One - the event is ineligible for taxpayer money from the Major Events Trust Fund, according to an opinion issued by Attorney General Greg Abbott in August 2012.

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09/15/14
f1

Russian linked with Caterham seat for Sochi
Roman Rusinov
(GMM)  Daniil Kvyat might not be the only Russian on the Sochi grid next month.

The Russian publication Sportbox claims that, amid the cockpit reshuffling under Caterham's new management, 32-year-old Roman Rusinov is in the running to debut in Russia.

Caterham sidelined Kamui Kobayashi at Spa last month in deference to Le Mans winner and the Hype-sponsored Andre Lotterer, while Spaniard Roberto Merhi is tipped to race in Singapore this weekend.

When asked about the rumors, Rusinov - who tested for the Midland team in 2006 under the leadership of Colin Kolles - said: "Theoretically, I would not rule out such an option.

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09/14/14
f1

Ferrari could take $25m stake in F1
(GMM) Ferrari could become the first F1 team to actually own a stake in the sport, the Telegraph reports.

F1 business journalists Christian Sylt and Caroline Reid reveal that, as a non-executive director of the sport's holding company Delta Topco, departing Ferrari president held an option to buy into F1 to the tune of about $25 million.

But a source close the Maranello team explained: "Ferrari, not Mr. Montezemolo, is entitled to exercise the rights."

The source added that "these rights are for Ferrari, and once again not ad personam for Mr. Montezemolo".

Montezemolo received the option in 2012 as formula one organized itself ahead of a floatation on the Singapore Stock Exchange.

But the sport's majority owner CVC delayed the floatation amid the eurozone crisis in 2012 and the corruption scandal surrounding F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

Comment
09/14/14
fe

Formula E to add Hong Kong next year
In Hong Kong, Alvin Sallay wrote Formula E "came to the streets of Beijing" on Sunday. Among the interested observers was Hong Kong Automobile Association President Lawrence Yu Kam-kee, "who is confident the series will come to the streets of Central next year."

Chinese fans packed the main grandstands around the emblematic "Bird's Nest." Some lined the track sides, "carrying children on their shoulders as the futuristic whine of the cars sounded across the track, and techno music added to the atmosphere."

After the race, Yu said that "he was going to try to seal a multi-year contract with organizers to bring a race to Hong Kong." He said, "I want to find out how many years the race will be run in Hong Kong and also nail down the funding." SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST

Comment
09/14/14
fe

Formula E Looking To Attract Carmakers Ahead Of Possible Initial Public Offering
Formula E, bankrolled with $100M by Boston Celtics managing partner Wyc Grousbeck and others, "wants to seduce sports fans and carmakers with a view to a possible initial public offering," according to Alex Duff of BLOOMBERG.

At the series offices in London, Formula E CEO Alejandro Agag said that "Renault SA is a series sponsor and Audi AG, which is backing one of 10 teams, also has 'a foot in the door.'" Agag said luring more carmakers is “very, very important” for the series and representatives from 10 auto companies were guests in Beijing. He "declined to identify them," saying he did not want to jeopardize confidential negotiations.

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09/14/14
v8

Penske Racing to field V8 Supercar team with Ambrose (10th Update) UPDATE #10 This rumor is now 'fact' with today's announcement.  According to AR1.com sources, NASCAR has plans the eventually buy the V8 Supercar series as it expands its brand internationally.

09/14/14 Official confirmation of Marcos Ambrose’s return to the V8 Supercars Championship with a Team Penske/Dick Johnson Racing partnership is set to take place Tuesday morning, Australian time.

Ambrose has announced at this weekend’s Chicago NASCAR event that he will return to Australia following the 2014 Sprint Cup season.

Team Penske is now set to reveal Tuesday that it will run Ambrose under a V8 Supercars Racing Entitlements Contract it has purchased from Dick Johnson Racing’s Steve Brabeck.

Ambrose’s car is expected to be run out of DJR’s workshop alongside the Queensland team’s remaining entry.

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09/14/14
nassprint

Ragan a favorite to replace Ambrose
David Ragan
With Ambrose's departure, David Ragan has emerged as one of the top candidates for the #9 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford. While the driver of the #34 Front Row Motorsports Ford is content where he is, at his age he would entertain offers to improve his position. "If Richard Petty had interest in me driving the car, I would certainly talk to them some," Ragan told Motorsport.com on Saturday.

"As a 28-year-old, I want to be around the sport for a long time and feel like I have a lot of good years in front of me. I'm very grateful for the opportunity that Bob Jenkins and Front Row Motorsports have given me. I've had a lot of fun and won a race. But you never know what the future might hold. About this time every year, you look at your options in other series or with other teams and other sponsors to go and race and I'd love to have the opportunity to talk to them for a little bit. But I'm sure there are a lot of drivers in that same situation."

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09/12/14
nassprint

Kahne to drive 3rd Ganassi entry
According to AR1.com sources, Chip Ganassi will be adding a third Sprint Cup entry for 2015.

Speculation is that Kasey Kahne will drive that car after Chase Elliott replaces him in the #5 car at Hendrick Motorsports.

Comment
09/11/14
f1

Ferrari wants Brawn, Bell and Newey (Update) UPDATE
Brawn no interest in F1 return
(GMM)  Ross Brawn on Thursday played down reports connecting him with a return to formula one.

With his old boss Luca di Montezemolo stepping down at Ferrari, rumors have resurfaced that the next management shuffle at Maranello could feature an F1 comeback for Brawn.

Most recently, the 59-year-old was the team boss at Mercedes, but currently he is enjoying retirement, including travelling with friends and indulging his passion for fly fishing.

"I am living a very different life this year," Briton Brawn told Germany's Auto Motor und Sport, "and it feels good.

"I am determined not to return to a full-time job."

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09/11/14
f1

Ferrari's On-Track Struggles Could Prompt Shake-Up Of Corporate Board UPDATE This rumor is upgraded to 'fact' with yesterday's news of Montezemolo stepping down.

09/08/14 Ferrari's "fall from grace is no longer just a worry on the Formula One track," according to the AP. It is "a cause for concern in the corporate boardroom, too." The events at and around the weekend’s Italian Grand Prix "appear to have set the stage as a tipping point for sweeping changes." For the first time since '08, Ferrari "failed to land a car on the podium in their home race."

Team Principal Marco Mattiacci said, "In Formula One, as in sport in general, there are days to forget and this was certainly one of them." Speculation "had been swirling" even before the weekend that Ferrari President Luca Di Montezemolo "was being forced out." Montezemolo "held court in the Monza paddock and insisted he was happy to stay."

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09/10/14
irl

IndyCar/IMS to turn profit?
According to Mark Miles, IndyCar's financials have improved during 2014.
This SBJ article by Tripp Mickle suggests that Hulman & Co. CEO Mark Miles may have steered his company into the black during fiscal year 2014.

The IndyCar Series and Indianapolis Motor Speedway are on track to be profitable for the first time in more than five years.

The series and track, which are owned by Hulman & Co., have been losing money for years, but a combination of eliminating some positions and generating new revenue through increases in ticket and sponsorship sales helped the company’s Hulman Motorsports division return to profitability.

“We had a very good year and turned the corner,” said Mark Miles, Hulman & Co. CEO, who declined to discuss specifics regarding the company’s financial performance.

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09/10/14
f1

Bob Bell linked to future Ferrari role (Update) UPDATE (GMM)  Reports that Bob Bell's future could be in red have resurfaced this week.

At around the same time Stefano Domenicali stepped down at Ferrari earlier this year, Mercedes technical director Bell's split was also announced.

The fact Bell's Ferrari link has returned now is interesting, given the likely shakeup at Maranello amid uncertainty surrounding president Luca di Montezemolo's future.

It has been rumored Bell, with experience at running a F1 team in the wake of 'crashgate' at Renault, might succeed Marco Mattiacci as Ferrari principal.

Italy's Omnicorse reports this week that Bell has "met with Mattiacci" recently "but has not yet signed a contract with Ferrari".

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