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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry



Categories: Racing

Toyota, Bridgestone Abandon Formula Eeeww

On: Wed, Nov 4, 2009 at 12:44PM | By: John Welch


A sad day for Toyota test 2

Toyota announced that it would pull the plug on its Formula 1 program today, confirming rumors that have been floating around the F1 world since the middle of the 2009 season. In an even stranger turn of events, Bridgestone, the tire company that chased Michellin out of the sport several years ago, decided to end their involvement in the F1 World Championship following the 2010 season.


Lake Mirror Classic 2009; Saab Sonnet GT4

On: Thu, Oct 29, 2009 at 10:16AM | By: John Welch


Saab Sonnet III GT4 test 2

The 2009 Lake Mirror Classic Car Show presents an interesting mix of classics, imports, super cars, and even race cars every year. This yellow Saab Sonnet is one such race car.

Its unassuming looks, encouraged by its unassuming tractor/passenger car roots belie its abilities. This car started life as a run-of-the-mill sedan, but quickly blossomed into the thouroghbred you see here . . .


Webber Wins Brazil; Button, Brawn Win Championship

On: Tue, Oct 20, 2009 at 1:16PM | By: John Welch


Webber Wins Brazil; Button, Brawn Win Championship test 1-1

Mark Webber and Red Bull were able to pull out a victory in Sao Paulo, but Jenson Button managed to finish ahead of Sebastian Vettle and teammate Rubens Barrichello to secure the 2009 Driver's Championship. Brawn GP was able to take the constructor's championship, with one race remaining in Abu Dubai.

The week leading up to the eventual win was a busy one; a recap of all the dramatic happenings here . . .


ALMS Season Finale Pt.2 - GT Car-Stag!

On: Wed, Oct 14, 2009 at 3:42PM | By: John Welch


ALMS Season Finale Pt.2 - GT Car-Stag! test 1-1

Yowza! I don't usually say nonsensical things like that, so enjoy it now: Yowza! All it takes to produce entertaining television is a Porsche, a Corvette, and a finish line. A couple of Europeans who seem to absolutely despise each other driving the two cars doesn't hurt either. Throw in one gut-twisting piece of elevation-shifting pavement referred to, simply, as "The Corkscrew", and you have the makings of a prime time bash-fest that network TV could never hope to compete with. Or, you would, if we Americans had any taste. Instead we get 'Private Practice' in prime time . . . yeeech!

But I digress; this weekend's ALMS finale featured one of the best last lap battles ever witnessed in American road racing, along with a number of other surprises . . .


 

ALMS Season Finale Pt.1

On: Wed, Oct 14, 2009 at 12:49PM | By: John Welch


ALMS Season Finale Pt.1 test 1-1

The American Le Mans Series, week to week, is the most entertaining racing of any kind in the world. It is a thinking man's sport; the sheer number of different car makes and drivetrains and classes gives a race-dork like me hours of brain food. After having learned every nuance of new cars and teams over the 2008/9 off-season, my autotechnophile-glands were swollen and ready to burst. This year saw several changes take place in the ALMS. Using the economic downturn as an excuse, Audi pulled out of the series for the first time in nine years. Running only two events, Sebring and Petit Le Mans, the Audi team was not able to dominate the series like they had in the past. A new LMP1 contender stood up to take their place, Acura.

 


Brumos Wins At Homestead, Gainsco Takes The Grand Am Championship

On: Mon, Oct 12, 2009 at 12:01PM | By: John Welch


Brumos Wins At Homestead, Gainsco Takes The Grand Am Championship test 1-1

Sunday could have gone a little better. A Bucs receiver not named Kellen Winslow could have caught, oh, I don't know, ONE friggin' pass. Jeff Gordon could have avoided letting Jimmy Johnson win. I could have been on my way to claim my $500 million worth of "lot-rie winnins" . . . naturally, none of these things happened. The Bucs choked away another promising start, Jeff forgot how to drive on the second to last lap, and I couldn't even afford the dollar required to be eligible for "lot-rie winnins" in the first place. To top it all off, both versions of American sports car championships wrapped up their seasons this weekend. By bedtime Sunday night, I was in a less than agreeable mood, needless to say.

The day before, The Rolex Grand Am Series ran an unforgettable event at the Homestead Miami Speedway. Both classes, Daytona Prototype and GT, were still up for grabs, three teams vying for the DP title . . .


Welcome Back, Kotter, Err, Lotus

On: Thu, Oct 8, 2009 at 11:48AM | By: John Welch


Welcome Back, Kotter, Err, Lotus test 1-1

The F1 title fight is coming down to the wire for 2009. At the Japanese Grand Prix, Brawn GP had the opportunity to clinch the manufacturer's title, and though they were not successful will have the chance again in Brazil. Brawn GP is the phoenix rising from the ashes of the Honda F1 team. After winning six of the first seven races, Brawn is finally seeing serious competition from more established teams like Red Bull and Mclaren, but most likely the title fight will go to Brawn.

Next season there will be several new teams entering F1, emboldened by Brawn GP's unlikely success. Manor Racing, Campos Racing, our home-nation favorite, USF1/GPE, and finally the return of Lotus, albeit under Malaysian ownership and based in Sepang. Unlike Brawn, these teams are all starting from scratch, using a brand new Cosworth engine (unfortunately, this is the same powerplant used by Williams in 2006; it should be competitive if the FIA allows minor updates; that's a BIG 'if') and placing that engine in freshly designed chassis.

How far along are these teams? A brief overview of each organization to follow . ..


Camaros Koni GS Debut Less Than Stellar

On: Tue, Oct 6, 2009 at 1:50PM | By: John Welch


Camaros Koni GS Debut Less Than Stellar test 1-1

The Chevrolet Camaro has been a hit, as much as any new car from an American manufacturer could hope for. The Camaro enjoys a long waiting list, has out sold the Mustang for four months running, and is generally regarded as the best use of GM's Zeta platform to date. Naturally, it's time to take the Camaro racing . . .

 


The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly

On: Fri, Oct 2, 2009 at 2:26PM | By: John Welch


The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly test 1-1

Drayson Racing to campaign the 2010 ALMS calendar, LMP Challenge car a "Real Race car!", video of the epic Patron Highcroft ARX-02a rebuild, another F1 team signs up with Cosworth.

Penske/Saturn deal ends in terminal prognosis for Saturn; are the Hummer, Opel and Saab deals next?

9ff creates another wonderful Porsche-based road car, then decorates it with what is possibly the worst paint scheme ever devised. Hide your children, shield your eyes!

Just for kicks, let's start off with some videos documenting Patron Highcroft's resurrection of their destroyed Acura ARX-02a, a story we covered last week . . .

 

 

The crash itself . . .

 

 

 

Duncan Dayton explaining the task at hand . . .

 

 

 

 . . . and time lapse footage of the actual rebuild. Incredible.


Fernando Alonso Displaces Raikkonen At Ferrari

On: Wed, Sep 30, 2009 at 12:18PM | By: John Welch


Fernando Alonso Displaces Raikkonen At Ferrari test 1-1

We knew this was coming. 'We' being myself and the other five F1-dorks currently living in the United States of America. Fernando Alonso, undisputed king of the F1 V10 era (he captured the 2005 and 2006 championships, piloting what are widely considered the baddest of all F1 Formulas — the high downforce, 1000bhp V10-powered cars of 2000 to 2007), has found himself at the center of the Ferrari rumor mill for the better part of four years. Finally, the storied Italian team has signed Alonso to a 3-year deal, replacing Kimi Raikkonen for the 2010 season.


Peugeot 1-2 At Rain Shortened Petit Le Mans

On: Mon, Sep 28, 2009 at 10:32AM | By: John Welch


Peugeot 1-2 At Rain Shortened Petit Le Mans test 1-1

When I was growing up, my taste in Christmas presents was usually fairly predictable. My parents would begin asking what I wanted around Thanksgiving, even though the answer was the same for a solid ten years. Go Cart! All I wanted in the world was the freedom to tear around our neighborhood in my own go cart, and every year the response to my answer would be "we'll see". And every year I'd wake up at dawn, run to where ever 'Santa' had positioned his offerings. And every year I'd get a bunk bed. (They didn't actually buy a new bunk bed every year, but that’s the present that made me stop asking for a go cart.)

Looking over this young blog, it seems I may have been a tad excited about the Petit Le Mans. That’s putting it mildly. I've lost sleep over it. I planned my entire weekend around it. I got my hopes up. Every single time I ever get my hopes up about anything, be it a go cart or 10 hours of Diesel-Prototype carnage; something goes wrong, and I am left broken hearted and disenfranchised.