A new weekly, or bi-weekly, or whenever-we-get-to-it section, bringing you the most important race news from the weekend. Everything you need to know and nothing you shouldn’t care about, plus some opinion. Feedback is always welcome.
- Some NASCAR race
- Dramatic F1 race with predictable results
- News bits and highlights
- And a few for the road….
In a Caution wrought battle at Richmond, NASCAR fans witnessed Kevin Harvick fight his way through the fray to win. While a record number of cautions were recorded in the course of the race, several caused by “accidental retribution” and some bitter rivalries coming to a boiling point, the race ended with everyone just a bit worse for wear.
Fernando Alonso made a stellar start at the Italian Grand Prix in front of the “home crowd” in his Ferrari F1 car, jumping from fourth on the grid to grab the lead by the first corner. Five laps later, pole-sitter Sebastian Vettel passed Alonso around the outside of the Curva Grande, putting two wheels in the grass in the process. Once Vettel regained the lead, his Red Bull chassis showed a bit of rear wing to the rest of the field and drove the rest of the race in the lead to take his eighth win of the season, well on his way toward clinching his second championship.
There was also a big crash on the opening lap, very dramatic but without any championship implications.
- Miko Hirvonen wins Rally Australia in his WRC Ford Focus.
- The Chase for the Sprint Cup has been set with the 12 drivers eligible including Dale Earnhardt Jr., Tony Stewart, Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch, and Jimmie Johnson, who is looking for his 6th consecutive title.
- NASCAR’s most popular driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. signed an enormous 5 year contract extension with Hendrick Motorsports
- IndyCar’s Andretti Autosport and KV Racing have both signed contracts to use General Motors Illmore-Chevrolet engines for the 2012 IndyCar season.
- Other IndyCar teams are attempting to contract with Lotus-Judd to supply engines, though thus far have been unsuccessful in reaching the heads of Lotus to set up a time to sign the contracts.
- Rumors abound that Lotus has not yet paid the team that ran their Le Mans program this year.
- In case you hadn’t heard, Danica Patrick has committed to run full time in NASCAR for the 2012 season, running only the Indy 500 in an open wheel car.
A few for the road:
- Indycar needs to step up its game to become a top tier international series. It is certainly on it’s way to that level, but improvements still need to be made. At the start of last Sunday’s Baltimore race, the green flag was waved while there was still a safety truck on course. Exiting the tight turn one, Graham Rahal was on the outside in second position, and nearly had a head on collision with the Honda Ridgeline Safety truck as it exited the track. Here’s a free tip for Indycar officials, if the course isn’t ready to go green, don’t wave that flag!
- Watch Grand-Am’s season finale at Mid Ohio next weekend for an exciting end to an exciting championship. Both DP and GT championships are coming down to the final race for the last few deciding points. The GT lead is currently held by a Camaro team, with Brumos’ Porsche 911 only 3 points down.
- IndyCar is making their annual trek to Motegi in Japan. Due to Earthquake and Tsunami damage, the cars will be running the Motegi road racing course rather than the traditional oval course.
(Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)