Saturday, October 31, 2009

Greg Moore – 10 years after


So like always, its hard to believe that a decade has already passed since the fatal tragedy that claimed one of CART’s rising Stars on Halloween occurred, thus taking Greg Moore’s life in the 1999 CART Season Finale’s Marlboro 500 at the California Speedway…

As I can still recall seeing Moore’s Player’s liveried Forsythe Reynard/Mercedes Benz violently Barrel-rolling multiple times along the circuits high bank knowing that it would be a miracle for Moore to escape un-injured; especially at the unabated speed of 200mph plus!

Yet for reasons unknown, the strongest memory of the late Greg Moore I seem to harbor is his overly foolish Bonsai carnival-like maneuver into the Festival Curves at the start of the 1998 Portland G.I. Joes 200, where as “Auntie” Harriet would say… He was acting like a “Hot Head!”

As almost co medically, Moore attempted to leapfrog his way into the lead from P14 and in the process managed to eliminate seven Racers!

Yet obviously the New Westminster native, who grew-up in the Maple Ridge suburb of Vancouver, BC had unbridled talent, as none other than the legendary “Captain” Roger Penske had just inked him to a (Multi-year) contract during the summer of 1999 to become a Penske Racing Driver for the 2000 season before his untimely incident.

Like many “Kanuck’s” Moore played Ice Hockey as a youth and ironically the No. 99 would be assigned to him when he began his Karting career… Thus reputedly having nothing to do with the revered “Great One,” (Wayne Gretsky) although certainly the connection wasn’t lost to Greg, as it would become his Car number throughout his CART career...

And like most Open Wheel Racecar Drivers, Moore cut his teeth in Go-Karts, winning the 1989-90 North American Enduro Championship before progressing to Formula Ford’s, where in 1991 he was the Formula Ford 1600 Rookie of the Year after finishing fourth overall with one victory.

In 1992, Moore became the USAC West FF2000 (Formula Ford) Champion, having claimed four Poles and four victories enroute to the title, along with being the series Rookie of the Year, before moving onto the (original) Indy Lights series, which he ran in 1993 for his Family’s underfunded Team and finished ninth overall.

In 1994 Greg became the youngest ever winner of a (CART Sanctioned) Indy Lights race at the tender age of 18 when he took the chequered flag at the season opening round in Phoenix, AZ and would record two more wins that season enroute to finishing third in the Championship.

For 1995, Greg joined the Players/Forsythe Racing Organisation and simply crushed the competition enroute to the Indy Lights Championship with a staggering ten wins out of twelve races, including a scintillating five-in-a-row… And thus was destined to make his move up to the “Big Boyz” the following season.

In his Debutant season, Moore scored 84 points and finished as runner-up in the CART/PPG’s Jim Trueman Rookie of the Year standings behind somebody named “Zorro,” a.k.a. Alex Zanardi.

In 1997, Greg then became the Championship Auto Racing Teams youngest ever winner (to that date; since eclipsed by Scott Dixon and Nelson Philippe) at the age of 22 when he beat Michael Andretti to the stripe at the famed Milwaukee Mile and would repeat as winner again just one week later… As I recall screaming at the Telescreen as not one but both of my Home team’s PacWest Racing Drivers; Mauricio Gugelmin and Mark Blundell who were running nose to tail 1-2 both sputtered out of petrol on the final lap and Moore swept thru from third place to claim victory on Detroit’s Belle Isle.

In ’98 Greg was joined by fellow Canadian Patrick Carpentier as Players/Forsythe expanded to a two car operation and Moore would dice with Zanardi at the Emerson Fittipaldi Speedway (“Roval”) in Rio de Janeiro before making a spectacular pass to solidify his fourth Champ Car victory, before later that year he’d pass the Target Boyz duo of Zanardi and Jimmy Vasser to claim the Vanderbuilt Cup in the US 500 at Michigan International Speedway, which was sadly overshadowed by the deaths of three spectators from a flying tyre that bounded over the catch fencing.


The year 1999 would start off very good for the Kanuck, once again taking victory in the season opening race in Miami, this time on the Oval Track at Homestead, which sadly would become his final Indy Car career victory, as Moore would suffer fatal head injuries on his early race incident at Fontana. (As the violent crash registered an incomprehensible 154 G’s!)

And ironically the Halloween race weekend had started out ominously for Greg when he was struck on his “Scooter” by a vehicle in the Paddock, suffering an injured right hand with Roberto Moreno being called-in by Players/Forsythe as a Back-up replacement, although Greg would take the Green flag from the rear of the field, having been cleared to drive with a hand brace.

And as I’ve said before, reportedly it was Greg whom introduced the “Dashley ‘Juan,” nee Dario Franchitti to his future wife (Ashley Judd) at a party of friend Jason Priestley's… As Greg’s posse was known to include the likes of “Mad Max” (Massimiliano) Papis, “TK,” (Tony Kanaan) “REO Speedwagon” (Dario Franchitti) and others I cannot recall, (Greg Moore Brat Pack: Adrian Fernandez, Franchitti, Kanaan, Papis and Jimmy Vasser) as I was overly touched by Dario dedicating his 2009 Indy Car Series Championship at Homestead to his late, great, friend…

Remembering Gregg Moore
Stats
1993-95: CART Indy Lights
1995 Indy Lights Champion

1996-99: CART/PPG Championship
72 Starts; 5 Poles; 5 Wins; 17 Podiums.
First race, 1996: Homestead-Miami Speedway; Homestead, FL
Last race, 1999: California Speedway; Fontana, CA

Friday, October 30, 2009

Help Spa-Francorchamps

Apparently some of the local residents who aren’t fans of Formula 1 are trying to cause the demise of one of the world’s most legendary race tracks… Spa-Francorchamps! And thus cause the Belgian Grand Prix to fade away because its too loud. SHEISA!

So please check out the petition to KEEP Spa-Francorchamps on the F1 calendar in the future, click here.

Lapping the Yas Marina F1 Circuit

James Allen has been providing some great videos on what the upcoming Abu Dabi Grand Prix on the Yas Island Marina circuit should look like along with some thoughts upon possible lap times. For a nighttime view, click here.

Toyota drivers familiarise themselves with Abu Dhabi track

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Caterham Cars Founder perishes

Although I know very little about the English make affectionately known as Caterham Cars, sadly I was informed of the news that its company founder Graham Nearn has passed away at the age of 76 this past Saturday. (October 24th, 2009)

Yet there seems to be an outpouring of fondness for the late Mr. Nearn, the “Godfather” of the Caterham Super 7, who I had the privilege of meeting once some half dozen years ago, albeit I had no idea of the man’s stature in the zany world of Automobile Manufactures, nor any inkling that a half century ago he’d started Caterham as a Lotus Agent for Colin Chapman’s lightweight (Fenders) Sports Car known then as the Lotus 7.

Nor do I know anything about a long forgotten British Television Show called: The Prisoner, which apparently was originally aired back in the mid 1960’s before spawning a whole new generation of fans with its rebroadcasting on Britain’s Channel 4 (BBC?) in the early 1980’s. (Circa 1983) Only learning about said TV show whilst searching for news upon Graham’s untimely death and having found an interesting interview.

The Vanishing point – Not a number

Thus further learning that Graham had ultimately built a Prisoner Replica nearly two decades ago, having tracked down Patrick McGoohan and hashed out a deal over breakfast in LA, as Nearn and McGoohan unveiled the Caterham Prisoner Edition 7 in October 1990 for the Birmingham Motor Show. As Graham had ambitious plans of a limited production run of 500 for the Prisoner replica which apparently peaked at the modest number of 47 when sales orders dried up.

And there’s a photograph (the photograph?) of Prisoner star McGoohan and Graham Nearn in the brief article titled: Steward of the 7, as the above interview mentions how Graham had been an “Extra” in the TV show and telling the producers he wasn’t really worried about the daily wages, he just really wanted a photo of him alongside McGoohan, which he’d use to promote sales of the Lotus 7, having just been granted a Concessioner’s deal in 1966, before ultimately taking over the automobiles manufacturing in 1973.

Yet, even today, this most iconic English Sports Car in varying forms of build and now known as the Caterham (Super) 7 is still in production a half century later and revered by many motoring enthusiasts around the world…

Japan’s newest Star?


Perhaps you’ve already heard that Toyota’s Test Driver Kamui Kobayashi will once again fill-in for the injured Timo Glock at this weekend’s upcoming inaugural Abu Dabi Grand Prix, as I suspect the team is using this as a further evaluation towards a Full time ride in 2010?

GP Race Debut
Ok, so it was only his very first Formula 1 race ever, albeit the weekend being of a most trying circumstance, a la wet ‘N wooly weather… But I found Toyota new boy Kamui Kobayashi’s performance at Interlagos, a track he’d never driven on before, except for video games and a exploratory “Scooter” outing prior to Free Practice to be very impressive.

Yeah, so it was only Friday, but in the battle of the Japanese Drivers; F1 Debutant Kobayashi outdueled the more experienced Williams-Toyota Kazuki Nakajima, (14th) he also finished ahead of both of the Ferrari’s who languished at the bottom of the time sheets with Raikkonen and Fisichella P18, P20 respectively, while Kobayashi wound-up a fine 13th in his second official outing, having substituted for Timo Glock in Friday Free Practice at Suzuka, which was also held in the rain.

After both Toyota’s had passed thru “Qualie One,” ( Q1) Kamui was lying a very impressive P7 in Qualie Two before Vitantonnio Luzzi stuffed his Force India into the wall on an abysmally wet track, and after a 71min Red Flag delay, Kobayashi got as high as sixth before a last moment spin saw Fernando Alonso snatching tenth in the waning moments of the session, with Kobayashi ultimately ending up 11th; as Raikkonen qualified sixth, Nakajima finished ninth and Fisichella spun out in Q1 and would start dead last. (P20)

But it was the race where Kobayashi put on his best show by holding up none other then eventual 2009 World Champion Jenson Button while driving in sixth place, as ‘JENSE would later report that Kobayashi was driving INSANE! Before the Brit finally overtook him…

As Kobayashi would cycle as high as third place before pit stops would see him come out to tangle with and effectively “Nerf” off track his Japanese rival Kazuki Nakajima who ended up on in the tyre barriers… Yet it was refreshing to see Kamui fight so hard for every place on track as he made a very nice pass upon Fisichella for ninth place in the waning moments of the Brazilian Grand Prix.

So, how will the “Young Lion” fare this weekend? Whale it’s a brand new circuit that nobody’s ever driven on, so I’d guess that Kobayashi could possibly finish in the points, but we’ll see, eh?

Brazilian GP Debrief with Kamui Kobayashi

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Turnin’ the BIG Six-Oh!



A ‘lil Indiana ‘Sycamore has told me that today a “Mega” middle aged procostinator of Indy Car Doom ‘N Gloom is celebrating his Birthday today… But wait, it’s even better yet as my reputed “Source” sez it’s none other then ‘Ol Open Wheel Racing Curmudgeon Robin Miller’s SIXTIETH BIRTDAY!!! AYE KARUMBA!

So Happy 60th Birthday Robin…

and NO word on what Ye ‘Ol Windbag (and friend) Dave Despain presented Robin with for this momentous occasion… As it’ll be hard to top last years gift when Despain actually had video footage of giving him a Tin-Top ride with someone named ‘Lil Ironhead…

And good luck blowin out all of ‘dem candles Robin!

Paul Tracy Wants You!

Hey all of uze Hosers from Up North Eh? (Besides Meesh & CAM-WOW…) Along with ALL of us CART ‘O Phyles, Err Chump Car Fanatics whose still are Paul Tracy (devotees) supporters…

According to James over at 16th and Georgetown, the Thrill from the West Hill, Err Mr. Chrome Horn (nee Paul Tracy) wants everyone to drop TROW, NO! NOT your pants silly… I meant to say drop his sponsor Monster Energy Drinks a line (or 48) claiming how the Wily ‘Juan, Messer Paul Tracy should indeed be given a 2010 FULL season ride in the Indy Car Series…

Click here and then go to the Shout Out section to leave your positively vociferous comments in support of ‘Ol PT!

(Thanxs ‘DAWG, Err pressdog for pointing ALL of us to the Paul Tracy Athlete link…)

IndyCar Trivia Question

So this past Saturday I asked Y’all an entertaining trivia question in Winning their Way, to which so far NOBODY has attempted answering besides Danny B and Mr. Carpets…

Although there seems to be a little confusion upon the exact wording of the Trivia Question, which was originally supposed to be: How many Indy Car Drivers have won the Indy 500 as (first) a Driver and (then) a Car Owner (Separately) in the modern era.

So does anybody besides Danny B and Mr. Carpets (who both know the Answer) Have an Answer?

As we originally came up with a total of four “Modern Day” Post 1960’s names, yet I’ve now come up with a total of eight, as the Trivia Question now reads as: How many drivers have won the Indy 500 both as a Driver and Team Owner…

so how many did you come up with, eh? As Y’all can leave your answers in the comments section...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Spies wins World Superbike title!

On another gray, dreary ‘N wet day in the Pacific Northwest, I eagerly sat down to watch the final two rounds of this year’s hotly contested World Superbike (WSBK) Championship Sunday afternoon…

As Ben Spies, the latest in a long line of American Road Racers from the Lone Star state of Texas was hoping to make history against 2009 WSBK title favourite “Nitro Nori.” (Noriyuki Haga)

Yet it was the Texan who triumphantly claimed the World Superbike Championship in dramatic fashion, as the series Rookie tallied his (WSBK record) 14th victory Sunday at Portimao, Portugal; as Spies has had an epic season long duel with perpetual Bridesmaid “Nitro Nori,” as the Japanese rider has been unable to close the deal in a decade of trying to win his first World Superbike crown, while leading Spies by as many as 88 points at one point on his Ducati.

After having won three consecutive AMA Superbike crowns for Suzuki stateside, Spies switched to Yamaha this year four his debut outing in the worldwide competition, as a springboard to a future in MOTO GP - targeting his fulltime series debut in 2011; as ironically Spies was riding for the Italian based Yamaha WSBK Team which Noriyuki Haga had previously ridden for before switching to the rival Italian (Ducati) concern in nearby Bologna.

And after having wrestled the points lead away from Haga in the first round of the Magny Cours double-header, Spies faltered in the second race with what appeared to be the wrong tyre choice and thus went into the season finale at Portimao trailing Nitro Nori by ten points, thus needing to win both rounds in the final race to take the title.

Spies started the week off in dramatic fashion by taking Pole position with a record time enroute to his 11th Pole of the season, claiming the SuperPole Award and setting a new record for most Poles in a season… Before the Texan simply motored away from the field at the drop of the Green flag, before title rival Haga crashed out at the tricky course on Lap 7, effectively handing the crown to Spies, who then held off a hard charging Jonathan Rea And Max Biaggi in third place, as it was the Italian who’d “Nerfed” off the Texan Down Under in Australia at the beginning of the season.

Yet by claiming the victory, more importantly Spies gained a valuable 25 points for first place, giving him a 15 point cushion over Haga going into round two, who’d DNF’ed a most pivotal Race 1.

But you must spare a thought for Noriyuki, who came down with the flu on the morning of the season finale, adding insult to injury on his Race 1 performance, which Haga made amends of in Race 2, passing title rival Spies enroute to a second place finish behind Ducati teammate Michael Fabrizio by 1.195 seconds. (So much for Team Orders, eh?)

Although Spies had started on Pole in round two,, the race shortly became a Battle of the Brits, as Shane “Shakey” Byrne And Jonathan Rea became locked in a mighty “Scrum” for the lead with Michael Fabrizio in close pursuit, as Spies simply wanted NO part in the battling Britain’s and decided discretion was the better part of valor in his title quest, ultimately dropping as far back as sixth, before once again passing Biaggi to finish in a secure fifth place and claiming the World SuperBike crown by six points over Noriyuki Haga, who seemed very gracious in defeat while still suffering with flu-like symptoms during the Post-race interviews; while once again Rea made the podium, but Fabrizio’s victory along with Rea’s third place was enough for Fabrizio to narrowly clinch third in the Championship by a scant two points ahead of Rea.

As Y’all may know, earlier this year Yamaha decided to promote Spies to the ranks of MOTO GP one year ahead of its plans, as the newly crowned Champ will join another past World Superbike Champion at the Tech 3 Yamaha Team in 2010 instead, as Tech 3 will effectively become “Texas Tech 3” when Spies will partner Colin Edwards in his Rookie MOTO GP campaign.

Yet, I’m not sure who was more happier with the accomplishment as Yamaha WSBK Team Principal Massimo Meregalli could not hide his jubilation over Spies handing him Yamaha’s very first ever World Superbike title as a grinning Spies said it would take a few days to sink in; before he jets off to Valencia to partake in the MOTO GP season finale as a Wildcard entry…

Rossi is Champion again

Valentino Rossi once again won another MOTO GP World Championship, as “The Doctor” performed surgery upon his competitors in the wet Malaysian event Sunday, after faltering to an unusual tenth place at the start, he carved his way back to the final step on the podium and thus clinched his seventh MOTO GP crown by finishing third…

The race which was delayed for 35mins by rain… Hmm? Must be Monsoon season, eh? As Rossi’s title rival and teammate George Lorenzo apparently failed to take his place upon the grid in the warm-up and was forced to start from the rear of the field, while the “Kentucky Kid” (Nicky Hayden) had a very good duel with Lorenzo, as the two riders swapped positions multiple times in the wet while fighting over fifth place, before The Doctor slipped by both of the riders.

Hayden ultimately finished fifth, one position behind Lorenzo while Colin Edwards seemed off the pace once again, soldiering home in 13th.

Thus Rossi has now claimed a total of nine Championship titles in his thirteen year career to date and looks set for more, although potentially the competition will be stronger next year, especially now that the ailing Casey Stoner has returned for Ducati and won the last two races…

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Winning their way

So recently Danny B asked me a trivia question: How many Indy Car Drivers have won the Indy 500 as a Driver and a Car Owner?

Quick; time’s up! Put them pencils down…

What’s your answer? As we came up with a total of four “Modern Day” names; so how many did you come up with, eh?

Friday, October 23, 2009

Todt is new FIA President

Unfortunately, but not surprisingly Jean Todt has been elected the new FIA President by a (“Secret-Secret?”) vote of 135-49 vs. rival Ari Vatanen, who as an outsider was fighting an uphill battle… As “Bert ‘N Ernie” (MAD Max ‘N Uncle Bernaughty) along with Herr Schumacher and the FIA constituency who wanted to keep their current jobs all backed the 63yr old Frenchman (Todt) and thus don’t expect too many changes from the WMSC rubber stamping Department…

Talking the USF1 talk

It’s kind of sad that it takes the dubious nay saying of one Emperor Bernardo’s casting doubts over the Singapore Grand Prix weekend regarding the health of new Formula 1 team’s to cause a rash of reactive PR Speak from one of the most “Hyped” F1 newcomers for 2010…

As instantly after Uncle Bernaughty said that the USF1 team seemed doubtful to appear next March, the House of Windsor flooded the internets and Newswires with reports of the teams progress to date with exclusive interviews with Team Principal Ken Anderson…

Latest USF1 fodder

Interestingly, although Team USF1 has recently hired Bernard Ferguson (ex-Cosworth employee) to oversee the liaison of their Cosworth engine supply, rumours suggest that perhaps Ken & Peter are now trying to break their contract in favour of a French or Japanese manufacturer’s preference instead?

Can you say Oh What a Feeling (Toyota)

While further reports claim that potential driver Alex Wurz has given up hopes on landing a ride next year with the team.

But the team is reportedly on track with parts being cut as we speak, to which Peter Windsor cleverly invited Steve Matchett to go check out “live on Air” during the Friday second Free Practice session on SPEED; to which Matchett immediately jumped on along with stating we should take a camera along too, eh?

As ironically I sat thru several airings of Peter Windsor promoting a free trip to the 2010 Canadian Grand Prix via a contest at GP Tours during the Brazilian F1 race, which would imply the team will indeed make the grid… Of which I hope so for several people’s sake including GP Tours...

Meanwhile Nate Ryan wrote an interesting article for USA Today with further teases about the progression of Team USF1 recently; even divulging that some of the team’s staff is from RASSCAR!

Start-up team seeks Formula One title made in USA

Also, it was revealed during the Brazilian GP weekend that Matchett did indeed go around the corner from the SPEED studio’s in Charlotte, NC with camera crew in tow and supposedly his very last RPM (Racing Per Matchett) episode of the season, to be aired during the Abu Dubai Pre-race segment will be this footage, so check it out!

And I’m guessing some of the negativity will dissipate once the team unveils its new 2010 Challenger sometime after the Season Finale… Now all we need is a trio of drivers, eh?

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Atlantics Championship Team to IRL?

I spotted this very intriguing tidbit upon The Other Side initially, which claims that according to SPEED’s Marshall Pruett, the 2009 Atlantics Championship winning Newman Wachs Racing Team could potentially be either jumping to the Indy Car Series or GP2 in 2010 with star driver John Edwards…

Although Team Owner Eddie Wachs goes onto say he’d like to possibly join an already established IRL outfit, to (hopefully) minimize the “Growing Pains” of building an operation from the Ground-up, if he makes the leap to the “Big boyz.”

So in true “CAM-WOW” (Matt Chamois) fashion, I’ve attempted to take a crack at the 2010 Indy Car landscape minus the “Big 3” establishments (Mikey Andretti Racing, Penske and TCGR) along with SRF (Sarah Fisher Racing) and Newman Haas Lanigan Racing which seemingly are the only outfits to be fairly stable at this moment in regards to their 2010 plans.

(NOT to say that ANY of the below Teams aren’t… As after all I can only GUESS, Eh?)

Personally I’d like to see NWR merge operations with Dale Coyne, as I think this would be a really good nucleus to build from, as they’ve got an excellent driver, while I suppose the Team’s only shortcoming is their Oval Track program, in which then you’d wanna possibly go with Panther Racing, eh?

Then again another good Team would be HVM, while Meesh’s favourite Team Owner “Boobie RAY-Xes” (Bobby Rahal) RLR Organization could always be resuscitated and Oriel Servia would be a great team leader… While of course the Up ‘N Comer of these potential merger candidates has to be (LCR) Luczo Dragon Racing, not to mention KV Racing Technology.

Meanwhile I’d guess that Dreyer & Reinbold would be a Dark horse selection since they seemingly already have their cadre of drivers in place, while I don’t know what Eric Bachelart’s (Conquest Racing) plans are for next year, while Team 3G seems to be a bit of a stretch.

And I never thought I’d say this… But I’d like to see Tony G. integrate his woeful vision Racing Team with Super Tex’s operation in order to build a sustainable 2010 two car entity… YIKES! (CANNOT believe I said that…) As it seems only logical that there will certainly be more consolidation in the future, while we await to see if Gil De Ferran can get his hoped for ICS team off ‘N running next year… Which I certainly hope will occur!

And then again there’s always an unlikely tie-up with AFS or Sam Schmidt; so who will it be? Will it happen? We’ll See, eh?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Button is World Champion



And obviously he likes saying it! As it’s only been a decade in the making, with many bumps ‘N bruises upon the way… As I still fondly recall his rookie campaign with Williams-BMW under the tutelage of Gerhard Berger, losing his Driver’s License for speeding in a BMW Turbo Diesel and professing to like women’s small feet in an F1 Racing interview…

Regardless of how one may feel towards ‘JENSE’s winning of the World Championship, to which he’s taking heavy flak back home Across the Pond for simply “Backing into it…” Nevertheless the BLOODY BRIT did indeed win the MOST races this season, (Six to date) and would have locked up the crown in Singapore if we were utilizing Uncle Bernaughty’s gold medal system.

Yet, has everybody forgotten that 1982 World Champion Keke Rosberg secured his lone title for Williams on the back of a solitary victory at the Swiss Grand Prix (Dihon-Prenois ) while title rivals Rene Arnoux And Alain Prost, (Renault teammates) Niki Lauda and John Watson, (McLaren teammates) and Didier Pironi (Ferrari) all double Keke’s victory total with two wins apiece.

Not to mention other various World Champions low victory tallies, i.e.; British title winners Mike Hawthorn (1958) lone victory and John surtees (1964) two wins; along with America’s first Champion Phil Hill clinching his lone title at Monza with his second and final victory of the season upon title rival and Ferrari teammate Wolfgang Von Trips death…

Or Jimmy Clark outscoring 1962 World Champion Graham Hill 4-2 and Jackie Stewart tying Graham’s three victories, yet it was Graham Hill whom clinched his second title in 1968; as yeah, button’s performance certainly dropped off mid-season, compared to title rivals Barrichello, Vettel and Weber, as the “aussie” race winner put it most succinctly.

Mark Webber:“I think he will sleep better now, because he’s been incredibly nervous, there’s no question about that, ” he said. “He’s been absolutely bricking himself the last few weeks, so he can sleep better now.”
And it would be hard to replicate last year’s title fight… But isn’t it ironic that Buttons title was secured in part by current World Champion Hamilton's "Ginzu-knife" tyre slashing on Rubino… Talk about passing the torch, eh?

Button: “The best race of my life”

So, Congrats ‘JENSE!

Who will be Mosley’s replacement?

Whale we’re just days away from electing a new FIA President to replace the outgoing “Sir maXXum,” a.k.a. Max Mosley this Friday, with the two candidates being Jean Todt and Ari Vatanen.

And the mudslinging has been pretty ferocious, as the deck chairs seem decidedly stacked against the rebellious Finnish upstart Vatanen, who most ironically drove for and won three Paris Dakar Rally’s for then Peugeot Sporting Boss Jean Todt…

Yet, it appears that the FIA under Mosley’s guidance has done nearly everything in it’s powers to quash Vatanen’s election bid; from todt’s flying on private jets, FIA members campaigning on their alleged “FREE” time, Ecclestone barring the Finn access to the F1 Grid, Mosley doing interviews in Todt’s defense, Mosley having Vatanen physically removed from his office and now reports that Todt backers have tried extorting votes in favour of Bribery!

Todt Official Made ‘Threats’ For Vote

Not to mention Michael Schumacher’s campaigning and letter writing in behalf of ex-Ferrari Boss Jean Todt; while Vatanen himself has filed a brief in the Paris courts asking for transparency in the upcoming election… Which naturally the FIA lambasted, even going so far as to say that all of the information upon the voting process was available upon their official website, yet, interestingly SPEED’s Bob Varsha, a Lawyer himself noted on Sunday night’s Wind Tunnel, that although there was indeed a section on voting on the website, it only told you how to go about getting your vote and NOT how the election process itself would be completed…

So you’ve gotta wonder why the full court press against Vatanen and which is really better? Status Quo or new leadership, as only time will tell… Hopefully shortly and without any lawsuits being filed instead, eh?

UPDATE:
Ari Vatanen has now agreed to withdraw his legal action against the FIA and will await the outcome of voting this Friday to see who’ll be elected the new FIA President, click here.

Monday, October 19, 2009

F1: Baking in Brazil - 2009 Edition

Whale and to think it was only raining HEAVILY here in the Pacific Northwest… As I was gonna steal Bob Varsha’s quip about the weather; Drizzle in the Sizzle for the title, but decided not to… As apparently the weather has been overly Fallish-like in San Paolo, as Friday’s morning Free Practice (FP1) session was interrupted by a 30min rainstorm, with drizzle returning at the end of the session and then once again returning for the final 20+ minutes of the afternoon session, (FP2) with further spritzing predicted for Qualifying and Race Day, as Y’all may know that Saturday morning’s final practice was interrupted for 42mins due to not being able to launch the Air Ambulance Helicopter. And then an overly LONG Qualifying session, but I digress…

Yeah, I know it’s only Friday Practice, but what in the HELL was “BOOMER,” nee Sebastian Buemi in the Scuderia Toro Rosso doing in second place? As even more impressive was the fact that the top 19 Grand Prix Piloto’s were only a scant 0.73 seconds adrift, while Giancarlo Fisichella finished last once again for the Scuderia, 0.9+ seconds adrift.

Meanwhile, Fernando Alonso made a light tanks flyer in the waning moments to grab the day’s top spot, with Championship rivals Barrichello third, Button fifth and Vettel seventh, as it was entertaining to hear ‘JENSE (Button) complain of both oversteer and understeer via his radio before grabbing P1 provisionally…

As previously mentioned, Saturday’s Qualifying was a veritable mess, with an 1hr 11min Red Flag delay during Q2 due to the monsoon like track conditions, as Vitantonnio Luzzi’s crash caused the second Red Flag of the day, while “Fishy-Fellah” (Fisichella) seemed more like a fish outta water, having spun off in Q1and bringing out the first Red Flag as he disgustedly walked back to the Ferrari pits; while Bob Varsha pointed out, in “Fisi’s” defense, he’s now running 2010 development “Bits” on his race chassis…

Admittedly Rubino (Barrichello) was on a lighter fuel load then front row competitor Mark Webber and those around him, having tried to take off like a scalded cat in front of 90,000 Brazilian’s chanting Rubino-Rubino-Rubino! But the ensuing melee behind him caused a Safety Car deployment, while the “Scrumptious ‘Nuan” (Jarno Trulli) vented his anger upon Peter Windsor over how he thought Adrian Sutil was just driving plain STUPID! After Sutil, Trulli and Alonso had all been taken out in a first lap crash.

Thus, the multiple carnage allowed “JENSE to move from P14 to ninth, with “ZEBB (Vettel) behind him, and all of this was before Kovalainen’s Pit fire when he was told to go before the fuel hose was decoupled and Raikkonen’s Ferrari was momentarily surrounded in a flash fire due to the combinations of hot exhaust headers vs. petroleum… Which thankfully snuffed itself out and the Kimster motored onto a sixth place finish, while McLaren would be fined $50,000 afterwards for their transgression…

Meanwhile Button ran into his fiercest competition of the race, none other then Grand Prix debutant “K-Squared.” (Kamui Kobayashi) who ran a mostly masterful race, keeping the Points leader at bay whilst in sixth place… With Jenson’s lone low point being the radio transmission to tell his engineer to tell the FIA to make the Toyota driver pull over, to which David Hobbs said you just need to get on with the job lad!

As Rubens pitted first, Webber took over the lead due to his longer duration on track and never surrendered the lead afterwards… While ‘JENSE made some pretty masterful passes upon his competitor’s, while Barrichello day spiraled downwards, having to ultimately pit for a tyre puncture, while the “Krakow Kid” (Kubica) ran a great race in the recalcitrant BMW Sauber, chasing Webber to the stripe, with Lewis Hamilton storming from the back of the grid to finish a fine third… And although Vettel finished one position ahead of Button in fourth place, with Rubens taking eighth, it simply wasn’t enough, as Jenson finished with 89 points vs. Vettel’s 74 and Rubens 72, hence clinching his very first World Championship with a single race remaining, while BRAWN GP also locked-up the Constructor’s Championship in their very first go…

Race Drive of Interlagos
Whale I suppose I’d have to choose between one of these three drivers, Sebastian Buemi, Hamilton and Kamui Kobayashi, as ‘JAGUAR (Hamilton) put on a most masterful Clinique racing from 17th to the final podium step, due to having a “Dry” setup in Saturday’s rain-fest… While Buemi quietly spent the entire weekend keeping his Toro Rosso at the sharp end of the grid enroute to scoring his very first World Championship points, but it was the Japanese driver’s performance which most captured my attention… Even if he “Nerfed” fellow countryman Kazuki Nakajima into the barriers…

His pass upon Fishy-Fellah for ninth place in the closing laps of the race reminded me of another Japanese “Lion” named Taku-San (Takuma Sato) making a blinder on David Coulthard many moons ago…

Top 3 - Qualifying
Pole: Rubens Barrichello
Second: Mark Webber
Third: Adrian Sutil

Race Results
Winner: M. Webber; 2nd: R. Kubica; 3rd: L. Hamilton; 4th: S. Vettel;
5th: J. Button; 6th: K. Raikkonen; 7th: S. Buemi; 8th: R. Barrichello.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

San Paolo ‘N Sprinkles

What an extraordinary Qualifying session I’ve just sat thru… As it has to be the longest “Qualie” in recent history? Taking a mere 2+ hours to complete, due to a massive rain delay, when asked of his opinion, Mark Webber quipped; tell him to put his glasses on! Referring to the FIA’s Charlie Whiting as there were rivers of water cascading across the tarmac after Vitantonnio Luzzi had stuffed it into the barriers in Q2, bringing out a Red Flag, before we went into the prolonged stoppage with 12:45 remaining to be run.

Yet while the past two days activities have commenced in the wet stuff, nee rain, (understatement of the day, eh?) reportedly it should be a fairly dry race tomorrow. (Hopefully) As all BLOODY ‘JENSE (Button) needs to do is finish on the podium, no worse then third to clinch his first F1 Drivers World Championship regardless of what Barrichello or Vettel do… So, a BRAWN GP 1-2 with Rubino winning his home race would do nicely, as it’s probably his very last shot, eh?

Besides we really want ‘JENSE & BRAWN GP to clinch the titles in San Paolo just to spite Uncle Bernaughty who’s publicly crooned for the title fight to go all the way to Abu Dubai instead… (So he can jack-up TV Commercial rates?)

Then again, Button and Vettel will have their work cut out for them tomorrow, as Jenson will roll off from P14 and Sebastian from a very uncharacteristic P16! While starting ahead of both McLaren’s…

As the Boy from Brazil; Rubino set Interlagos alight with his first pole in 5yrs, ironically 88 races ago at Interlagos whilst driving as Herr Schumacher’s wingman… So can the ageless Brazilian finally take the chequer’s in his Home race?

Tune-in tomorrow!

Was Glock really busy Texting?

Initial speculation surrounding Timo Glock’s “Suzuker Smash!” (Hmm? Don’t Y’all miss those days of the Honda Suzuker Specials, eh?) Saw SPEED’s Steve Matchett quickly claim that something musta broken; steering shaft or suspension failure, as NOBODY ever crashes there! With ‘Hobbo (David Hobbs) prattling on ‘N on ‘bout how strange of a place to crash, while Matchett thought perhaps the steering columns UV joint failed?

But further review showed how The Kimster’s (Raikkonen) steering input was nearly identical for that portion of the track… So it was somewhat surprising to hear during Friday Practice at Interlagos that Glock had admitted he’d simply taken his eyes off the road in order to look down at his steering wheel… Uhm? I’d like a Number Four with a Diet Coke… Err, you want me to switch the rear ride height to setting XBK//469 Tango-Charlie-Alpha-Oscar Eight-Six-Niner?

And thus apparently as he approached the straightaway, he looked down, his front wheel touched the wet grass and WHAM! Game Over… To which ‘Hobbo was quick to lambast as a bit of a silly mistake at his Professional level as a driver…

So repeat after me Y’all: Hands at 10 ‘N 2, eyes ON the road…

Three Amigos?

NOT! As ironically, once again it appeared that the hands of fate had intertwined the lives of Fernando Alonso, Kimi raikkonen and Michael Schumacher, of which it seems, was brought up during the just completed Japanese GP by Bob Varsha, whilst I finally had an opportunity to watch the Italian edition of Inside Grand Prix which chronicled the TERMINATOR’s near comeback…

Schuey gives up
As many of us anxiously awaited the return of Michael Schumacher to Scuderia Ferrari at the European Grand Prix, it was entertaining to note that first Williams and then Red Bull & Toro rosso all (adamantly) nixed the idea of letting Herr Schumacher get some seat time in Ferrari’s 2009 challenger, the F60, sighting how the current rules forbid any in-season testing and how Scuderia Toro Rosso’s rookie Jaime Alguersuari wasn’t allowed to do so prior to his Hungaroring debut.

Yet sadly, after having found himself behind the wheel of a privately owned Ferrari Clientente F2007, with “current GP2 spec” Slicks on it pounding about Mugello for 67 laps, Michael’s severely injured neck simply wasn’t able to withstand the rigours of a modern days Formula 1 chassis G-Loading and was forced to cancel his planned comeback, which was mightily disappointing to many around the globe, as the Tiafosi salivated at seeing the Ferrari God once again behind the wheel of one of their beloved rosso chariots.

Alonso to Ferrari
This was a long standing rumour which just wouldn’t go away… as mounting speculation continued to suggest that “Ferdi the Putz” (Alonso) had been inked to a pre-contract signing with the Scuderia to replace “The Kimster” (Raikkonen) in 2010 as Felipe Massa’s new teammate, in a deal eerily similar to Herr Schumacher’s farce majeure, where a la Williams dealings with Messer’s Mansell, Prost & Senna, saw some of the sport’s greatest simply unwilling to share the limelight with their contemporaries, nee arch rivals.

As it appears that Schuey was finally presented with the fact that he’d be paired with a younger Finnish teammate (Raikkonen) who could potentially beat him in equal machinery and thus decided to reluctantly call it a day in F1 a la Williams revolving cast of Grand Prix Superstars.

Thus, almost the entire Formula 1 Paddock seems to believe that it’s a done deal with Ferrari having switched its season ending party to Valencia and Spanish mega banking concern Banco Santander becoming Ferrari’s sponsor in 2010, (As this badly kept secret has just been confirmed at Monza with Ferrari announcing a five year deal having been struck.) Thus it seems to imply that it’s most certain that Alonso is set to arrive shortly.

Kimi going Rallying?
Then of course there was the most entertaining rumour suggesting that FIAT will start a new WRC Rally team next year allowing Maranello to transfer Raikkonen to the World Rally Championship in order to make way for Alonso’s arrival; of which I’d personally welcome, as it’d be an added boost to the WRC, which is sadly lacking for competition currently…

And thus, if such things do occur, where the Kimster is either persuaded or forced out to make room for the Spaniard, it would be an ironic parallel to the Finn’s own career path to the Scuderia, as Raikkonen first replaced the retiring Mika Hakkinen at McLaren, before filling the even larger “Schues” of Herr Schumacher at Ferrari… Although Kimi claims he AIN’T GOIN’ NOWHERE!!! Next season, since he’s got a contract to race for Ferrari in F1 alongside Felipe Massa, who seemingly has made a miraculous full recovery from his horrifying accident in Budapest and is set to return to full racing action for the Scuderia in 2010.

Yet, as Y’all know… Fredrico Suave (Alonso) has now been confirmed at Ferrari beginning in 2010 for 3yrs with an allotment of extensions available for the paltry sum of $25m (Euros) per season, as Massa’s new teammate, while Kimi will most likely return to McLaren next season as Lewis Hamilton’s new teammate, with Michael Schumacher continuing his role as Felipe’s mentor…

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Glock out for Brazil, season?

Toyota’s Timo Glock has been diagnosed with a cracked vertebra in Germany and therefore will not be participating in this weekends Brazilian GP, as the team has announced that third driver Kamui Kobayashi will make his Formula 1 debut at San Paolo, substituting for the injured Glock, who’s status for Abu Dubai is still unknown…

Laguna Seca Donnybrook


Whale fortunately SPEED decided to show the 4hr American Le Mans Series finale from Monterey, CA in its entirety a day after the fact and thus, I sat down and watched the entire show mid day Sunday, and what a race it turned out to be for the overall victory and the GT2 class win, as both were mighty scrums between the various combatants…

Yet, it was even cooler getting to see (briefly( that not only had Jim Hall been coaxed into attending the race, but he brought along a pair of his legendary Chaparral’s for exhibition duty, to which SPEED’s Dorsey Schroeder said the crowds went completely “Banana’s” (wild!) over seeing on track… Not to mention the brief interview with Hall saying how he was looking forward to being out on the track with Gil… As this was Gil De Ferran’s final race and thus as I said before, it was a nice touch on Gil’s part to honour the man who gave him his very first Indy Car ride some 14yrs ago, behind the wheel of a Hall VDS Racing Pennzoil yellow Reynard 95 Mercedes Benz, (Ilmor) where he won his very first CART race at Laguna Seca enroute to the Rookie of the Year title.

Paul Gentilozzi’s Rocketsports Racing made their Jaguar XKR GT2’s chassis full race outing as a development test as the team looks to make a full season campaign in 2010, while I’m wondering if perhaps this car is simply a dusted off Trans Am racecar since Gentilozzi should have plenty of them laying around his shop from the days of SCCA Pro Racing competition.

The No. 17 Team Falken Tire Porsche 911GT3 RSR competing in the hotly contested GT2 category was busy developing Falken racing rubber as a new contender in the series and the team had driven 11hrs to retrieve a better suited set of tyres “Just-in-Time” for the race…

The No. 16 Dyson Racing Le Mans P2 (Prototype class) Mazda Lola B09 86 once again was racing as an Unclassified entry (UNC) as it continued it’s test program involving running upon Bio-Butanol in conjunction with team sponsor BP (British Petroleum) and engine partner Mazda, which the team made its Butanol debut at this year’s Petit Le Mans, as the series fourth fuel source: Diesel, E85 Ethanol, Pump-grade Petrol and now Bio- Butanol, which the team hopes to use in series Points competition next year, while in my previous story Is Corn King? I noted how BP is an ardent supporter of Butanol in the future, especially as an alternative to the media darling Ethanol, as interestingly Butanol has better properties then Ethanol as shown in an cross country exercise way back in ’05, albeit most likely to be a Petroleum Corporations byproduct, but I digress…

Thus, back to the racing action, as fittingly De Ferran captured the Pole position for Saturday’s race, with his main competitors for the overall victory being Championship rival Highcroft Racing, along with Fernandez Racing’s LMP2 Acura being the dark horse.

Simon Pagenaud led from Pole and simply motored away from the 32 car field, comprised of four different classes, as Championship leaders Highcroft simply needed to complete 70% race distance to secure the title and thus David Brabham took it very easy, albeit suffering with an electrical gremlin relating to the gearbox shifting selector, which the team disconnected and thus Brabham and co-driver Scott Sharp needed to be informed of which gear they were in when pitting as their dashboard no longer displayed this pertinent information…

Meanwhile the No. 48 Corsa Motorsports Hybrid P1 challenger argubably put in its best performance by running as high as third place overall, before finishing fourth, after having to replace its electric motor earlier that morning, while Brabham and Sharp would cruise home to a third place finish.

But the race was an epic battle between old CART competitors De Ferran and Adrian Fernandez in the final thirty minutes, as Fernandez doggedly chased Gil as close as a scant 0.4 seconds adrift thru traffic, even passing De Ferran, only to be out powered on the front straight, as Fernandez said; Gil’s a great racer and he never made a mistake… As the pair would finish 1-2 respectively with De Ferran 0.6 seconds ahead at the stripe!

Yet the real fireworks were being contested in the GT2 class between the No. 45 Flying Lizard’s Jorg “Rowdy” Bergmeister and the No. 3 Corvette with Jan “Trickle” Magnussen behind the keyboard, as “MAG’s” (Magnussen) relentlessly hounded Bergmeister for the class victory, putting an unbelievable “Out-of-Bounds” pass upon the German for the lead, by using the pit lane’s entrance as a passing zone, which the Officials told the Dane to give the position back, before the two combatants did a ‘lil Racin’ is Rubbin’ action on their way towards the Corkscrew… Then in the final corner Magnussen did his best Cole Trickle impersonation, trying to loosen up Jorg with a luv-tap, but Bergmeister was having none of it, as he basically ran MAG’s into the front straight wall, which the Dane then T-Boned as Bergmeister held onto the GT2 victory with Jan’s crumpled Corvette runner-up… As Jorg said he was still shaking in the Post-race interview… As both drivers have now received a two race probation for the beginning of the 2010 ALMS season, with any further incidents to result in a two race suspension...

And next year should be even better with the American Le Mans Series new four class structure, which I’ll delve into later…
(And now they’ve moved the Laguna Seca race to May… SHEISA!)

2009 Laguna Seca ALMS Class Entries:P1: 6; P2: 4*; GT2: 14; GT3-CS: 8#.
(* = #16 Dyson Racing UNC race car.)
(# = Two competitors excluded from results for rules infractions.)

Laguna Seca Race Results

IMS for Sale?

Don’t know if Y’all saw this ‘lil tidbit – teaser in the Oct. 14 edition of Ask the Expert, which I believe is Curty “Two Shoes” Cavin…

Question:
Joe Saward writes on his blog about the rumors that IMS is for sale, then goes on to speculate that the France family is the obvious choice, puts the tag at $600 million and cites potential of using it more than three times a year. Is there any smoke, much less fire here? (Frank, Jersey City, N.J.)

Answer:
I just will be shocked if they sell. I hear all the same rumors and the speculation makes sense in a still-strained economy, but I think the family sees this as more than a business; it defines them. It's also something for future generations to own and operate. For those who don't know Joe Saward, he's a Formula One guy who is very well connected in the sport. I consider him a friend, too, so I respect his work.
(source: Indystar.com)

Seems a bit far fetched, eh? Then again you make the call…

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

National Hug-A-Blogger Day


Jeff of My Name is IRL has boldly proclaimed October 13th to be National Hug-A-Blogger Day… So have Yuhs dones soe yet, eh?

Audience Participation Requested

Massa to throw Chequer’s at Brazil

The steadfastly improving Felipe Massa, who’s recently spent time reacclimatizing himself in Scuderia Ferrari’s simulator at Maranello while preparing to test a ’07 Spec Ferrari (F2007) fitted with GP2 slicks, in which he did yesterday and today at Fiorano… Successfully completing 100km on Monday, 79 days after his horrific shunt at the Hungaroring, has also confirmed that he’ll throw the Chequered Flag at his upcoming home race at San Paolo, Brazil this Sunday.

Yet don't expect the Brazilian to return to racing for Ferrari until 2010...

Indy Car fodder

So the seasons over and Y’all know the Championship results… But did I hear Bob Jenkins right? As I swear I heard him say that Alex “Pink” Lloyd has a full time ride with Newman Haas Lanigan Racing in 2010 during the Broadcast…

Along with Will Power being given a full time gig in Team Penske’s third IRL entity next year as Penske’s Grand Am Sports Car crew will move over to the IRL, which seems to be unconfirmed at the moment, since its expected The Captain will at least run the Rolex 24 at Daytona next January?

Not to mention Sarah Fisher Racing’s expansion plans, while the verdicts still out on Hideki Mutoh and his Formula Dream sponsorship for 2010…

And did Y’all catch Dario on Wind Tunnel Sunday night? To which when asked by Dave Despain if he’d caused any modern IRL lore by celebrating, Dario replied that he’d been out with Dixon, Wheldon and Kanaan ‘til 5AM… After snickering nothing good ever comes outta hanging out with them, since somewhere during the weekend’s festivities, TK’s reported to have thrown Dario into a swimming pool… Yet, there’s no word on whether or not any bicycles were sawed in half?

And I liked Dave’s gentile dig about Dario’s future plans… Asking him if he’d may be going to MOTO GP with all of his Motorcycling skills… To which Dario coyly replied I’m not so good with my Motorcycling Dave, but I do enjoy watching MOTO GP…

And “”Mr. CHiPs” of Indy Racing Revolution has an entertaining look upon how the Dashley ‘Juan, Err Mr. REO Speedwagon, nee Dario Franchitti’s improvable victory is being viewed abroad, click here.

Yet, best of all was the eternal optimist Robin Miller’s take upon the IRL switching over to a slightly biased Road Course/Street Circuit calendar… HELL! TCGR & Penske won all of the Ovals this year, they’ll win them ALL next year and then again ‘N again…

So may be the switch will be a good thing, since the only driver to prevent the Ganassi-Penske “Clean Sweep” was Justin Wilson’s breakout victory for Dale Coyne at Watkins Glen…

Edwards wins Again!

Although it would have been nice to see the Winn ingest Female Atlantics Driver in history… NO! Not Princess who’s got less “W’s” (Wins) then former Champ Car driver Katherine Legge in Atlantics.

No, it’s Simona De Silvestro with four victories who went into the Season Finale at Laguna Seca leading the title, so it would have been nice to see Simona win the Championship title, yet it wasn’t to be upon retiring early and thus the title went to perennial front runner John Edwards, the 2008 Star Mazda Champion instead… As Juniour Open Wheel Talent (JOWT) has a pretty good story about it, click here.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Another NASCAR Drug problem

Isn’t it ironic? As this past Thursday, prior to the Homestead Season Finale Grand-Am race, a series owned by NASCAR… None other than J.C. France, grandson of “Big” Bill France, founder of the family Dynasty was arrested for alleged possession of Narcotics… Hmm? First Jeremy Mayfield and now J.C. France, as I just find it a bit odd that the majority of issues seem to be occurring on the RASSCAR side of the fence…

France arrested on drug charges
And thus its even more ironic that the No. 59 Brumos Porsche which is usually chauffeured by J.C. won the race with none other then the legendary Hurley Haywood at the controls, who was standing in for the suspended France, having won the race back in ’03 with J.C. as his co-driver; Hurley’s last Grand Am victory…

Homestead ’09: The Motegi edition

First ‘N Foremost… Hats off to the entire ICS grid for running their own respective races and NOT interfering with or taking out the three title contenders… As fortunately Hulio didn’t pull a “Bryan Herta” and cause a Yellow flag in order for teammate Ryan “Burnin’ Inferno” Briscoe to make the necessary fuel mileage to claim his first Indy Car crown, but I digress… As this would turn out to be the very first race in IRL history to go caution flag free and the second quickest ever completed event at a skosh over 201mph.

Dario Franchitti (1st: 2009 ICS Champion)
As Y’all may know, I was rootin’ for Dario “REO Speedwagon” Franchitti to win his second Indy Car crown the majority of the season… As he seems to be the liveliest of the three Championship combatants Yet, I changed this tact when I wrote Dario-speak where I thought he uncharacteristically threw his Pit crew “Under the Bus” and hence changed allegiances to Ryan Briscoe…

So I found it most ironic that Dario won the 2009 Indy Car title Saturday; as I’d previously asked Mary Ellen over the course of our Maryhill excursion if she thought Dario remembered that it would be his friend Greg Moore’s 10yr Anniversary of his death this Halloween… Especially since reportedly it was Greg who introduced him to Ashley Up North, Eh? In Vancouver, BC at a party; as thus the irony dripped even further over Mwah when Dario dedicated his '09 ICS title to Greg Moore, saying this "Juan's for him as it was 10yrs ago that Juan Pablo Montoya beat me (for the CART crown) and we lost Greg... And when asked if he started thinking about it before the chequered flag, Dario responded; Greg would have KICKED MY ASS if I'd started thinking about it before winning the race!

And before Y’all make any Dario backing into it a la Princess Motegi comparisons… As Dario was quick to point out that they went for a fuel mileage race… Its worth noting that Dario’s taken five Pole positions this season along with five victories; so Congratulations Dario!

Scott Dixon (2nd; -11pts)Don’t know why, but for some strange reason I wanted anybody but The Iceman 2.0 to win a second consecutive title and third overall this year, as Scott just seems to be the most “Vanilla” of the three drivers and Thank Goodness I wasn’t playing some sorta drinking game for every time he said the word Target this season; Aye Karumba!

And its even funnier yet that I feel this way since I should be rooting for him as he’s originally a PacWest CART Boy, which after all was my Home team for several years… Yet Dixon still has plenty ‘O time to break all of Sam Hornish’s IRL records and I’m guessing he’ll be even hungrier next year, eh?

Ryan Briscoe (3rd; -12pts)As Y’all ready know… This was the driver I spent the whole race chanting GO RYAN! At the Telescreen as I kept saying you’ve gotta lead the most laps plus win the race as Scott Dixon was making things difficult for him once again…

And Ryan did his very best, by clinching the two points bonus for leading most laps and seemingly being the driver to beat, but it wasn’t to be, as Dario slyly worked his way forwards from third to first in the final laps, going on to win the title…

Yet I found Ryan to be the most impressive of the three and I really enjoyed his openness and humbleness throughout his “Twenty-Oh-Nine” IRL campaign, as he seemed to be the most improved driver of this Championship trio, so Hats Off to Ryan, who’ll possibly beat his former Boss next year, eh?

And it was most impressive how these three combatants left everyone in their dust, by lapping the entire field by two laps as you cannot ask for anymore of a season finale, Yet since these three drivers claimed a total of 16 of the 17 Indy Car race victories this season, you’d have to expect them to be the Championship front runners… So perhaps it was fitting that the number 10 racecar captured victory and the Championship on the tenth day of the tenth month of the year, ten years after having lost a title and a very good friend, eh?

And I've just learned that it was also TCGR's 10th victory of the season... Coincidence?

Friday, October 9, 2009

Gil De Ferran’s Swan Song


Although I’ve hoped to be at Laguna Seca the past two year’s for the Monterey Sports Car
Championship, for some strange reason they pushed the event forward one week this year and hence I’m still home instead poondin’ meese nucel’s on ze keeboards, but I digress….

Thus as this weekend’s spotlight is shone upon Homestead, the Laguna Seca outing also on Saturday marks Gil De Ferran’s final race drive, and he’s been made the races Grand Marshal, while his team’s Acura racecar will feature a special all white “Chaparral” livery in tribute of Jim Hall, who gave him his start in Indy Car competition, as hey! That’s a pretty cool way to go out… And it’s nice to see a driver pay homage to those who’ve helped him out along the way…

Laguna Seca: Series spotlight - Gil de Ferran

It’s almost Showtime!

Ok Kiddies, it’s almost time for the mondo-spectacular Homestead IRL Season Finale, just a little over 24hrs away… As Y’all will wanna gather ‘round and watch potentially Princesses last drive in an Indy Car?

Nah! But do tune-in to the TV Broadcast bright ‘N early… If Y’all can manage to sit thru a riveting race Preamble; or if you’re still a hapless casualty in the Direct TV/versus skirmish, then you’ll have to go elsewhere… As may I recommend the IMS Radio Network via le internets, while TV coverage begins Saturday afternoon at 1PM Pacific and will indeed be your last chance to watch Bob, Robbie, Jon, Robbie Floyd 2.0, Mr. BRUT Arute-Arute and Lyndie-Car in action this year.

The racing action kicks off today with Indy Car Qualifying set to begin at 1:20PM, preceded by Sarah Fisher’s 2010 season plans and second driver announcement at Noon… Then on Versus at 3PM is the Firestone Indy Lights Final 2009 race, with the IRL’s Season Finale set to roll off at 2PM Saturday… (ALL Times Pacific – Check your local listings)

GO BRISCOE!

Petit Le Mans Postscript

Whale, although I missed the majority of SPEED’s live flag to flag coverage of this year’s Petit Le Mans and was overly ANNOYED that SPEED chopped off the Singapore Grand Prix Qualifying Post Race interview in order to take us to a fairly lame Petit Pre-race show, I did manage to catch the first 45mins or so…

Thus it was cool to see that Marino Franchitti captured the LMP2 Pole position and he and co-driver Butch Leitzinger ultimately went on to win their category, while the Ford GT-R started on Pole in LMGT2 thanks to David Murray’s performance…

Yet, it wasn’t to be as the race was cut short and failed to reach the 1,000km distance for the very first time ever due to the massive deluge of precipitation, including Thunderstorms, which continued to hammer the Atlanta region…

It also would be the first time in nine years that Audi didn’t win the event, as Peugeot who won this year’s 24 Heurs du Mans, would capture their very first Petit Le Mans victory with Franck Montagny and Stephane Sarrazin behind the wheel...

Road Atlanta: Series race report

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Latest USF1 fodder

Whale that’s interesting… As I’d grown tired of the blank white pages that greeted you on both of Team USF1’s websites, usf1/usgpe.com) which have now been changed to boldly claim “America’s Formula One Team… Coming in 2010!”

As I also noticed yesterday that veteran F1 reporter Joe Saward had a brief interview with Team Principal Ken Anderson, claiming that the team’s still on track and a car should be completed by early November, in time for January 2010’s “Winter Olympics,” nee Off Season Testing.

USF1: Interview with Ken Anderson and pictures

Meanwhile that proverbial soothsayer ‘O words Peter Windsor, has now apparently told Autosport that the team may be “forced” to take on an experienced “Non-American” driver for its first season... Uh-Duh, I think this has been in the “cards” for awhile, but hey as long as we get another American into Formula 1 eventually is all that matters… Although I still think the team is remiss to not give the young “Wicky” (Robert Wickens) a shot, since after all he’s from the same Continent, eh?

Then again, can you say The Hamburgular? (Bourdais)

Kubica signs with Renault

As expected, now that Crash Gate has settled down, and lead “Reggie” driver Fredrico Suave has been signed as the Kimster’s replacement at Scuderia Ferrari… Renault has announced the signing of Robert Kubica as its lead driver for its 2010 F1 campaign, while the jury is still out on whether or not Romain Grosjean will retain his seat next year.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Ferrari to power reborn Sauber Team

And missed while Out ‘N Aboot in Maryhill was the news that the recently sold BMW Sauber F1 Team, which changed hands with the mysterious Swiss Holding Conglomerate QADBAK for a cool $80m Euros, has confirmed that it will run customer Ferrari “Lumps” beginning in 2010, with a supply deal rumoured to be for 3yrs. Now all they’ve gotta do is connive their way back onto the grid…

F1: “Kuhnichiwah” Suzuka Circuito - 2009 Edition


So the Japanese Grand Prix returned to its traditional (and rightful) home of the wonderful Suzuka Circuito this year for the first time since 2006, after a massive infield complex upgrade, including brand new Pit garages, Media Centre and extensive track repaving, which thankfully the circuit was NOT neutered by Herman Tilke, while reputedly Uncle Bernaughty was overly quick to point out to the BRDC how he’d asked the Japanese to spend money and they’d done it…

As memories came flooding back (Pun intended) as Friday’s practice session was an extremely soggy affair due to a fast approaching Typhoon, of which I’d encountered upon my wonderful outing to Suzuka way back in 2004… (Can it really be already 5yrs ago? Since seeing the TERMINATOR score another glorious victory…)

And I sat there pondering just how well would the Laser ride height sensor that Steve Matchett had pointed out its red light during the Singapore event function in the abysmal conditions.

Interestingly, it was originally pointed out by Bob Varsha that nine of the current twenty F1 Piloto’s on the grid had never raced a Formula 1 chassis in anger at Suzuka, which seemed pretty high to Mwah, as it was later pointed out during the Qualifying pre-amble that there were six “Freshman” debutants at this year’s Japanese GP event, with obviously half of these being the three Formula 1 Rookies of Renault’s Romain Grosjean and both Scuderia Toro Rosso Drivers Jaime Alguersuari and Sebastien Buemi.

The other three debutants are none other then reigning World Champion Lewis Hamilton and McLaren teammate Heikki Kovalainen and Toyota’s Timo Glock.

Meanwhile Red Bull Racing’s Sebastian Vettel and Force India’s Adrian Sutil have only participated as Friday Third Driver’s back in 2006, while Williams home grown talent Kazuki Nakajima had previously run at Suzuka countless times, just not in a Grand Prix.

Thanks to F1 Fanatic for doing the heavy lifting on this, as I got tired of SPEED blathering on ‘bout it all weekend long with never saying the names out loud!

F1 Drivers relish Suzuka challenge
And according to Inside Grand Prix, the hardest braking spot is the Casio Triangle corner just prior to the start/finish straight, where the drivers must bleed off a massive 204kph and resist a “Mega” 5.9G deceleration force.

And I’ve already scribbled about the wild ‘N wacky Qualifying session in Utterly chaotic Qualifying in Japan.

While the race seemed to be a somewhat more sedate affair, with Pole Sitter “ZEBB (Vettel) basically rocketing off into the distance on his Monza Renault Lump which will be utilized in one of the final two races, with Toyota’s Jarno Trulli getting jumped by the KERS powered McLaren of Lewis Hamilton on the start and BMW Sauber’s Nick Heidfeld moving up to fourth place, while once again ‘JENSE struggled mightly to get into the points from his tenth place starting position.

As the race was fairly dull from the leader’s perspective, although I was happy to see Trulli-Scrumptious get back around Hamilton, who would finish 2-3 respectively, while Button’s points lead was shaved once again, with great infighting occurring mid-pack, while Vettel simply “Walked-it!” For his third victory of the season and fourth of his young career, and thus, the Championship rolls onto Brazil, with button on 85 points, leading teammate Barrichello by 14 (71) and Vettel by 16, (69) with a maximum of 20pts up for grabs; meanwhile BRAWN GP is all but assured of wrapping up its very first Constructors Title at Interlagos, as it leads Red Bull 156-120.5 and both cars would have to retire from both races with a maximum of 36pts available in the Constructors chase.

Race Drive of Suzuka
Although I was hard pressed to choose between Jarno Trulli and a very impressive outing by “Quick Nick’s” (Heidfeld) resurgent BMW Sauber, my choice goes to the German wunderkind Sebastian Vettel, who simply dominated the weekend and is always a pleasure to listen to in the interviews and especially on his in-car radio when celebrating victory! As ‘Hobbo (David Hobbs) said again; Vettel like Michael Schumacher just seems to enjoy winning...

Top 3 - Qualifying
Pole: Sebastian Vettel
Second: Jarno Trulli
Third: Lewis Hamilton

Race Results
Winner: S. Vettel; 2nd: J. Trulli; 3rd: L. Hamilton; 4th: K. Raikkonen;
5th: N. Rosberg; 6th: N. Heidfeld; 7th: R. Barrichello; 8th: J. Button.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

IMS Luxury Suites Open House

While the majority of hubbub is cast upon this weekend’s riveting IRL Finale at Homestead, once again Mr. CARPETS has provided the following info below… In case you’re not in the market for the George’s 14,000sq ft estate, but wish to see how the other side takes in the yearly event during the Month of May… Then you may be interested in this?

In today's Indianapolis Star on page A 6 at the bottom is an ad for Indianapolis Motor Speedway Suites Open House, Friday October 16 10 am -5 pm.

"A rare opportunity to select from a limited number of private main straight suites"

Be sure to RSVP by emailing agriffith@brickyard.com or calling 317-492-6750 by 10/15/09.

Monday, October 5, 2009

George’s Downsizing

Thanks to Mr. CARPETS of Indiana for spotting the following article upon Tony & Laura George’s palatial estate going upon the market… Just one more sign of how desperate Tony G. is to keep his Vision Racing team afloat? (C’Mon, Y’all knew that was coming, eh?)

Tony George's home and 12 acres for sale

F1: The Bright lights of Singapore - 2009 Edition

And then there were Three left fighting for the 2009 Formula 1 World Championship: BRAWN GP’s Jenson Button & Rubens Barrichello vs. Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel, who although mathematically alive, seems to be a veritable long-shot for this years F1 Driver’s Crown.

And I must say with my outing to Maryhill last week, it all seems like a blur… As Y’all know that Old saying It musta been fun, as another year’s time has already passed since scribblin’ my last GP Report…

Thus after returning, I sat down and gorged my eyeballs upon 6hrs of Formula One coverage from Singapore, (kinda like what I’ve done whilst poundin’ meese nucel’s away on ze keeboards today…) which unfortunately for me is a night race and therefore very difficult to see…

Even if ‘Hobbo (David Hobbs) ‘N Varsha waxed on eloquently about the amazing skylight and fantastic backdrop it provided, rambling on about the monstrous Flyer Ferris wheel, which reminded me of the mammoth Ferris wheel upon the River Thames… Or playing golf at night on a lit course, which seems a tad bit carried away to Mwah…

And thus I really don’t recall it being an overly dramatic event, since even after the reputed course improvements; it seems it was very difficult to pass upon, as the young “Louise JAGUAR” Hamilton simply rocketed off into the nightlight, leaving everyone behind, even if he had difficulties with his KERS system.

Although it was entertaining to hear about the RIDICULOUS ticket prices, with Bob Varsha claiming a GA (Gen. Admission) stub would set you back $175, with a Grandstand seat up along the Pit Lane/Front Straight costing up to $1,300, while if you were ultra sheik and seeking the ultimate ticket, then admission into the Paddock Club would only set you back a cool $8k for the weekend. (All amounts USD)

And its funny how my allegiances keep shifting, as I began the race by hollering for Nico Rosberg to get ‘JAGUAR, as he seemed “owed” a win after having been cheated out of his debut Grand Prix victory one year ago… Then I marveled at how hilarious it would be for Fernando to take the victor’s laurels after the dreaded shenanigans of Crash Gate, but rightly so, it wasn’t to be… After the weekend had begun quite eerily with Romain Grosjean crashing his Renault in the exact same spot that Nelson Piquet Jr. had done one year earlier…

And I’d forgotten about those most bizarre technical failures that the Red Bull & Scuderia Toro Rosso cars had suffered last year; when Red Bull claimed that Mark Webber’s mysterious gear boxes trying to select two gears at the same instantaneous moment were triggered by an electrical surge caused by the passing of an underground subway train…

Red Bull moves to avoid gearbox issue

Meanwhile, Rosberg’s race was effectively ruined when he managed to slither across the blend line while leaving Pit Lane on his first pit stop, being given a Stop – Go penalty, of which Red Bull’s ‘ZEBB, a.k.a. Sebastian Vettel would incur for speeding in Pit Lane… While Webber ‘N Co. may not have suffered electrical gremlins this year, but certainly the same could not be said for both Red Bull & Toro rosso’s brake failures, with the Aussies exploding on track after the Team Engineer’s had sent him on his way after a pit stop revealed massive amounts of black carbon smoke funneling out of the brake discs… No, they’re Ok Mark, trust us Mate!

And thus, Hamilton scored his second victory of the season, with Timo Glock and Fernando Alonso taking the final two podium spots respectively.

Meanwhile current point’s leader ‘JENSE finally managed to stop the bleeding by finishing ahead of teammate Rubino for the first time in a considerable while, as the two BRAWN GP drivers finished 5-6 respectively.

Race Drive of Singapore
I’ve been kicking around various header’s for my new race item of which I couldn’t come up with anything overly clever, having started my Drive of the Race theme with the Italian GP and Vitantonnio Luzzi’s glorious return to F1. As this will now serve as my inspiration for returning to my belated Grand Prix reports…

Although some may argue that his drive was somewhat artificially aided by the mandatory allowing of his passage ahead of Mark Webber, nevertheless, I found Timo Glock’s performance to be quite impressive as he finished ahead of everyone except race winner Hamilton.

Top 3 - Qualifying
Pole: Lewis Hamilton
Second: Sebastian Vettel
Third: Nico Rosberg

Race Results
Winner: L. Hamilton; 2nd: T. Glock; 3rd: F. Alonso; 4th: S. Vettel;
5th: J. Button; 6th: R. Barrichello; 7th: H. Kovalainen; 8th: R. Kubica.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Utterly chaotic Qualifying session in Japan


Whale I’ve just finished watching the most chaotic F1 Qualifying session that I can recall in a very long time from suzuka, Japan… And although the rain has stopped for the time being, with reports of another Typhoon heading towards the Philippines, the accidents certainly did not!

The morning’s final practice session saw Mark Webber write-off his RB5 chassis upon ripping off the steering rack in a brutal crash and therefore didn’t take part in today’s Qualifying.

Then, a most bizarre three red flags were issued during a Qualifying session fraught with five crashes involving four drivers, with Scuderia Toro Rosso’s Sebastien Buemi crashing twice and causing a Yellow flag which would ultimately effect the final grid positions of four drivers, who were deemed to have not lifted off of the throttle in this area, as both BRAWN GP Drivers ‘JENSE & Rubino, along with Fernando Alonso and Adrian Sutil would all receive five grid spot penalties for this infraction. (Which makes it pretty funny to see how animated Fredrico was after the Q2 “Quallie” session…) While Buemi was docked five grid spots for driving back to the pits in his damaged car from his second incident and impeding the progress of his competitors.

But oh no, we weren’t done yet with the grid penalties, as adding insult to injury was McLaren’s Heikki Kovalin, one of the red flag crashers… And Force India’s Vitantonnio Luzzi both being forced to take five grid spot penalties upon replacing their gearboxes.

Meanwhile, Toyota’s Timo Glock who was flown by helicopter to Hospital with back pains and a cut leg, who hopefully will race tomorrow, joined Webber on the final row of the grid as his TF109 chassis also needed to be replaced, with SPEED now reporting that Glock will NOT participate tomorrow and there will only be a single Toyota participating.

Hopefully the race will be a little less chaotic with no more accidents, eh?
Revised Starting Grid

Friday, October 2, 2009

Kobayashi fills in for Glock

Toyota’s Third Driver Kamui Kobayashi was called up to stand in for regular Race Driver Timo Glock who’s apparently come down with a bit of a nasty cold/fever, for Friday’s Japanese Grand Prix practice. (NO H1N1 Jokes here…) As team doctors have prescribed his taking the day off to recover in time for a hopeful return for Qualifying and the Race.

Having just completed watching yesterdays miserably WET practice session, I’d say that Timo picked a good day to stay in bed and let Kobayashi, the reigning GP2 Asia Champion entertain his Home crowd.

Interestingly, Toyota’s other Race Driver Jarno Trulli, was sick upon arriving in Japan on Wednesday, missing a team PR function, so hopefully the drivers just had a bout of Bad Sushi? Sorry ‘bout that… Couldn’t resist…

Homestead Finale is only eight days away

So it’s always fun to be allowed to listen-in on an IRL Teleconference with some IndyCar “Big boyz…” Especially on a gray ‘N gloomy day in the Pacific Northwest,; and thus your Humble Scribe, along with his fellow “Bloggaraatzi” (As Jeffie of My Name is IRL likes to call it) got to listen in on a fairly entertaining interview between two of the chief architects contesting the 2009 Indy Car Series Title; Mike Hull of TCGR and Tim Cindric of Team Penske for what was essentially a half hour interview.

IRL Teleconference
(Thursday; October 1, 2009)
The teleconference was hosted by the always affable Arni Sribhen, of Firestone Indy Lights fame… And I enjoyed the light hearted competitiveness between the two men, as Cindric scored the first broadside across Hull’s bow when telling Mike to take it away and answer Arni’s question first since you’re leading… To which caused Hull to guffaw out loud, as Arni had read off the most impressive Bio’s of both combatants, whom both have scored multiple Championships and racing victories along the way. With Tim being Hulio’s Pit Strategist, while Mike is responsible for calling the shots on Dixon’s car, in what Arni noted was the second closest title fight in series history, with a record 14 lead changes to date.

In regards to Ryan Briscoe’s blossoming into a title contender this season, Cindric noted that Ryan has always been on the pace since the very “Get-go” when watching him test against Penske at Sebring in 2005 with TCGR. When it became apparent that Lucas leur was moving to Audi’s Sports Car effort in ’07, Briscoe’s name came up and they decided to give him a shot in American Le Mans competition to see if he could mature into a possible replacement for Sam Hornish Jr.

To which Hull replied; by saying can I say a thing about Briscoe before answering your question Arni. I’ve always thought that Ryan was special from Day One when he privately tested for us at Phoenix before the Sebring test and he really persevered thru a very tough ’05 campaign, where we simply decided to look at our operation from a business standpoint and decided to cut back to a two car operation which meant unfortunately we had to let Ryan go, as I’m a huge fan of his… So obviously I wasn’t looking to have him winning the title against our two drivers; as Scott and Dario are simply the two most similar drivers - melding into one and sharing everything, so hopefully one of them will win the title for us. (Of course I’d hazard to guess that Mike would prefer Dixon in order to give him bragging rights over his boss a la Cindric vs. “The Captain.”)

Then it was time for questions from the selected audience with Bruce Martin of versus being up first. Huh? I thought that Bruce was the Doofus who less then impressed me at Indianapolis this May with his stupid qcomments while reporting for Sports Illustrated.

And after repeatedly trying to pin down Cindric on Will Power’s future at Penske, Tim calmly stated; well I can tell you we’re NOT letting him go yet! As we’d obviously like to get the situation cleared up as soon as possible; as to whether it’s a full time ride or race by race basis we’re still working upon that situation.

Cindric then rolled off the company line how you could throw a virtual blanket over Power and Briscoe, who are extremely similar talent-wise… Well for starters they’re both “Aussies.” And they both work really well together and are quite willing to share information with Castroneves, who’s kinda our team leader.

Next to take a crack at the duo was Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press, who asked for both men's impressions on how the race could go? To which Tim replied, well obviously our situation’s a lot more straightforward then Mike’s is, to which once again caused Hull to laugh out loud. As Mike stated how he’d like to hire the person Reynolds claimed to have figured out there were 250 possibilities for winning at Homestead, but Chip’ll be there, along with his Abacus… As Hull seemingly echoed Cindric’s comments… To which Tim noted that there were other drivers in the Frey, as some would be going for their first victory of the season and for others it might be more dire. (Can you say Contract?)

I’m very proud of Ryan’s willingness to go and answer some tough questions in his own words after Motegi, of which he’s basically put into the past and has promised to give his all at Homestead. Roger’s not the type of guy to yell at you when something like that happens and our team’s silence on the matter pretty much sums up things…

Last in the queue was Gary Graves from USA Today, who seemed to ask a fairly similar question, to which both Mike & Tim methodically answered, with Cindric restating how it was pretty simple for them; as if Ryan didn’t finish ahead of the TCGR duo then he wouldn’t be Champion… But don’t forget “Hulio’s” going for fourth in the series and would still like to win. He respects the title protagonists and won’t do anything foolish; but obviously will do whatever we can to help Ryan but at the end of the day he’s still shooting for fourth.

Arni then wrapped-up the session by asking Mike if she’d told him that Dixon would be leading the Championship going into the final round at the beginning of the season, would he have believed it? To which Mike calmly replied I’d wanna know who your Crystal ball reader was…

And that concludes this teleconference

As I really enjoyed the camaraderie and respect shown between the two opposing Team Bosses, which caused me to go away thinking how pragmatic of both Chip ‘N Roger to have hired such competent team managers… As obviously this allow both Team Owners to focus upon the bigger picture, like Sponsorships, Employees, equipment, Team direction, etc.

So Thanks to Arni for letting me listen-in to the teleconference…
And don’t forget to check out the 2009 Championship Finale at Homestead on versus, unless you’re still a hapless casualty in the Direct TV/versus skirmish… As next Saturday afternoon beginning at 1PM Pacific will be your last chance to watch Bob, Robbie, Jon, Robbie Floyd 2.0, Mr. BRUT Arute-Arute and Lyndie-Car in action this year.

Also, it’ll be interesting to see how Bruce, Tim and Gary convert this teleconference into printed word for their various employers, which should appear in the near future… (Perhaps today?)

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Miller in the Big Chair

Whale I suppose its official now? Since James of 16th ‘N G-Town has let the Cat out among the Pigeons so to speak… As I’d heard the news from the ‘Ol Curmudgeon himself about working on trying to get Super Tex to come on Ye Old Windbag’s program this weekend when Robin Miller will be filling in as Dave Despains fourth special (stand-in) show host… Following in the footsteps of Ralph Sheheen, Krista Voda and Tommy Kendall.

So tune-in this Sunday night at 6PM Pacific to see what Robin Miller & AJ Foyt will have to yak about, eh? As perhaps we’ll be able to get around the mandatory splattering ‘O RASSCAR related topics that Wind Tunnel normally panders too...

When Seven really equals Two

So it’ll be interesting to see how the Scuderia juggles its driver’s line-up next year, as they reportedly have seven F1 Piloto’s on retainer, as SPEED’s Bob Varsha mentioned during the Monza Pre-race glitteratzi, that the TERMINATOR, nee Michael Schumacher had just inked a new 3yr “Personal Services” contract with Maranello.

This is on top of current race drivers Kimi Raikkonen, Giancarlo Fisichella, Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso, not to mention testers Luca Badoer and Marc Gene all reportedly being under contract to Ferrari, which Peter Winsor re-stated during this past weekend’s Singapore GP.

Or as Varsha said somewhat sarcastically during the Monza weekend; “At the rate we’re going, Ferrari will have all the drivers and Cosworth all the engines.”

So yesterday, Ferrari confirmed one of the year’s worst kept secrets by officially announcing the inking of “Fredrico Suave” to a three year contract beginning in 2010 and the REAL “Iceman,” nee Kimi Raikkonen having now been amicably bought out of his final year’s service contract with the Scuderia, as Steve Matchett had pondered the staggering $49m reported salary the Kimster was set to earn next year whilst driving the red cars…As Scuderia Ferrari’s 2010 driver line-up will now consist of Fernando Alonso alongside the rapidly improving Felipe Massa, with “Fishy-Fellah” (Fisichella) as the team’s new Test/Reserve Driver.

So let the dominoes begin to fall in the 2010 Formula 1 Drivers Sweepstakes!

To read about Peter Winsor’s Team USF1 latest Hi-jinx, See: Montagny to USF1?

The “G-Mann’s” Back!

NO! NOT those pesky Revenuer’s, or men ‘O a certain Pigskin team… As yeah, I suppose James of 16th and Georgetown, a.k.a. the “G-Mann” would rather NOT discuss his recent visit to the Emergency Room, BUTT! Nevertheless I’m glad to see that he’s made a speedy return to the Blogosphere Airwaves… As another member of the IRL Blogger Brigade reports for duty;

“The G-Mann;”“Sorry for the lack of updates recently but I've been in the hospital to get my appendix taken out, or at least what was left of it after it blew. I should be back home either Friday or Saturday, and hope to update the site more regularly there after. By the way, if your stomach hurts don't wait 2 days to go to the hospital, big mistake.”
So I’ll leave it to Y’all to peruse his site for his latest scribbling’s upon the Danica Fo Manica & Terry “Two Step Ingle-Fart’s” yearly we’re Rally-Rally-Rally close to lining up a Tittle Sponsor blather…

Welcome back James!

Oh Bernie, you’re such a Comedian!

Don’t know if Y’all saw Uncle Bernaughties coyish comments about how his good buddy and business partner… On how the recently disgraced Flavour Flav (Briatore) should fight his infinite ban from FIA Motorsports activities… Oh Bernie, you’re such a Hoot! Hmm? Wonder if this is little more then window dressing to appease their long standing friendship or open the door for future enterprise?

Ecclestone urges Briatore to appeal life ban

Meanwhile you’ve just gotta “LUV” the comments from fellow drivers in relation to “Nielsen Ho’s” (Piquet Jr.) getting off “Scot-free,” especially the “Krakow Kid’s” zinger…

Robert Kubica:
“Normally, if you go the police and you say you killed someone but you know someone else who killed three people, you will still go to jail."

And that about pretty much sums up the whole tawdry affair, with whispers now reputedly hypothesizing that the FIA’s “Witness X” could be none other then Fred Alonso? As I’d like to think we’ve heard the last of this matter, unless Nelson Piquet Jr. somehow miraculously shows-up upon the 2010 F1 grid, eh?