FEBRUARY 2007
RACE NEWS & VIEWS
Latest news is at the bottom
Feb 1 -  An Unser getting arrested is getting to be old hat.   Al Unser Jr., 44,  was arrested Friday
night outside Las Vegas for drunken driving and leaving the scene of an accident.  Troopers
responded to an accident in which a car crashed into a freeway median after being sideswiped by a
Ford Excursion that had fled the scene and was being pursued by other drivers.   When the
Excursion got off the freeway, police approached the sports utility vehicle to find Unser at the
wheel.   He failed all of the sobriety tests according to a state trooper.

It seems to me that his dad and uncle have been arrested about 3 times since Junior punched his
girlfriend and then left her stranded out on an Indianapolis interstate in the middle of the night after
leaving a bar.

Perhaps we'd all be safer if we put these guys back to work driving race cars.  NASCAR could keep
them busy
and out of trouble with their 40-race schedule.
Feb 8 - Marco Andretti was invited back by Honda to test their F1 car.  The practice took place in
Jerez Spain.

13 other F1 drivers also practiced.  
Nick Heidfeld was fastest with a lap of 1:29.5  Andretti was
slowest, his best lap a 1:32.4.  Andretti will be racing in his sophomore year in Indycar.  

Honda F1's 2007 drivers are Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello.
Feb 7 - Champ Car has had to drop Denver from its 2007 & 2008 Calendar, leaving 16 events this
year.  The recently added September races in Holland and Belguim.
INDYCAR TEST IN DAYTONA

Indycar testing took place over two days at Daytona on the road
course.   New Honda engines and the switch to all Ethanol fuel
were certainly among the items to be reviewed.  Rain came and
washed out some of the test for the 17 drivers who showed up.

As one would expect, Penske, Andretti-Green and Ganassi were
at the top of the speed charts, with
Helio Castroneves leading
the way.  Castroneves will be striving to win his first Indycar
championship this year.

Danica Patrick lost practice time sitting around waiting for her
seat to be fixed.  "We didn't make a very good seat for the road
course car and I just didn't fit right," Patrick said. "On a road
course, it's especially important to be comfortable because you're
always pushing the limit. It's not like a 1.5-mile oval where you
just put your foot down.

"It's been a tough couple days, for sure, but that's just all part of
the learning process," she added. "We're taking a new team's car
and learning what we need to get it right."

Anthony Foyt was the fastest of the three Visoin drivers in the
last practice session, who's cars showed up without their '07
paint schemes.
Danica Patrick and team-owner Michael Andretti
Tony Kanaan and Michael Andretti.
Michael Andretti, having "retired" a few
years ago, came back and raced in the 2006
Indy 500 and almost won it, finishing 3rd.  

He announced that he is going to attempt to
qualify for the 2007 Indy 500 too!
Feb 14 - Cheever Racing has hired American Richard Antinucci to drive for them in the  Indy Pro
Series team in '07.  Antinucci raced in Formula 3 in Europe and Japan and is the nephew of Eddie
Cheever, Jr.

Antinucci’s passion for racing began when he watched Cheever finish third in the U.S. Grand Prix in
Phoenix in 1989. Moving to Rome when he was 12 years old, Antinucci developed his driving skills
in Europe. Antinucci raced karts, Formula Fords, and Formula Renaults on his way to Formula 3
competition, which culminated in a fifth-place finish in the 2006 Euroseries with two wins and a
second-place finish at Macau.
Richard Antinucci
Richard Antinucci Biography

Birthdate: January 26, 1981
Birthplace: Rome, Italy (Italian-American citizenship)

2006
Drove in the Formula 3 Euroseries finishing fifth in the championship with two wins,
two second places and one third place. Finished second at the Macau Formula 3
Grand Prix after an impressive charge through the field from ninth on the starting grid
(following a penalty in qualifying.)

2004
Was an official TOMS Toyota driver in the Japanase Formula 3 Championship, finishing
fourth in the championship with one win and 11 other podium finishes. Finished 8th
(started 33rd) at the Macau Formula 3 Grand Prix and set the record for the fastest lap at
Macau.

2002, 2003
Drove in the British Formula 3 Championship. Earned the Formula 3 World Cup
Champion title in 2003.

2000, 2001
Drove in the European and British Formula Renault series. Most notably, won the 2001
Spa International Festival and was runner up in the British championship with four wins.

1998
Drove one race in the Italian Formula Ford series, winning the event.

1989 to 1997
At eight years old began racing go-karts. Won races at local, national and international
levels.

Interesting facts: Single; speaks English, Italian and French; Chargers Fan; likes training,
cycling and tennis; lived in Arizona and Oregon as a child.
The Chevrolet Corvette will be the official
pace car for the 2007 Indy 500.

This is the 9th Corvette to pace the 500.  
This is the 4th year in a row the Vette has
been the pace car.
Feb 19 - I feel sorry for Fernando Alonso.   He joins McLaren and so out goes his sense of style
and off comes all that hippy hair of his.  When you work at McLaren, they insist that you look
"professional".  If professinal means you look like a buck private, then I guess he now looks
professional.  I know its common place for guys to shave their heads these days, but I can't get
used to it.  It just looks ugly to me.   I always tell the young guys that they better grow some hair
while they still can!
While rooting for Alonso at Renault, I purchased a hat and shirt that had the most remarkable
color scheme - bright turquoise and yellow.  The colors went together very well and nothing in
my closet resembled it.   The shirt would always garner praise from the ladies when I would
wear it away from the track.  Having an attractive racing shirt  was a pleasant departure after
having spent years wearing BAR's weird and drab olive clothing, as I rooted for Jacques
Villeneuve.  I could have chosen the nicely designed blue and white BMW clothes or the
brilliantly colored Ferrari shirts, but I chose to root for my favorite driver instead.

Now, I'm facing the same problem again as the current line-up of clothing for Fernando is
boring and ugly thanks to the funky 2007 designs at McLaren.   The shirt does not even say
McLaren on it!   
2004 - Cool Alonso meeting King
of Spain and Prince Andrew.
2007 - Dorky Alonso
Feb 18 - There were a lot of big crashes during the end of the Daytona 500.  A restart with 3
laps left,
Mark Martin looked like he would win his first Daytona 500, however he got
passed by
Kevin Harvick at the last moment, who won the race by just a few feet.  And then
there was another big pile up.....  Some whisky-sponsored car slid across the finish line on its
roof, which was kinda cool.  It flipped again as it came to a stop, right-side-up, and with its
windshield on fire.  The driver exited with no apparent injury.  

I think instead of airbags, passenger cars would be a lot safer if they were designed with roll
bars like a Nextel Cup car.  It would be fun seeing girls in the supermarket parking lot climb
into their cars through the windows too.
Feb 26 - Formula One has been testing in Bahrain.  Both Ferrari and McLaren have been fast,
but
Nick Heidfeld set the fastest lap last week in his BMW powered Sauber.  Testing will
continue this week.

The IRL was testing in Homestead.  
Dan Wheldon was fastest both days, however he did
tear up a race car on the 1st day.
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