July 2007
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RACE NEWS & VIEWS
Latest news is at the bottom
July 5 - According to CycleNews.com, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway will host a round of the 2008 MotoGP World Championship, with
all three World Championship classes expected to take part.  It is set for Sept. 14, 2008.

The official announcement will be made July 16 at IMS.  Apparently Tony is not treading water waiting to hear from Bernie about the USGP.

The MotoGP World Championship compete at famous tracks around the world.  Currently the only American race is at Laguna Seca.
Indy Speedway News Index
July 8 - Scott Dixon won Indycar's Watkins Glenn race for the third year in a row!  

Tempers flared after the race.  After the checkered flag, Tony Kanaan made an
unsportsmanlike move on Sam Hornish Jr.  After Sam got out of his car, he headed
over to yell at TK.  For some reason, Sam's old man jumps in the middle of it and
pushes TK!  A couple guys then get in his face, including Michael Andretti.  Marco
steers his dad out of it, while some other dude attacks Sam Hornish Sr and they both
go to the ground fighting and some officials fall on them to break it up.  
FOLLOW UP --  July 12 - AGR and Penske were fined $25,000.  Sam Hornish
Senioris suspended from pit lane for one race -- and probation.  Anthony Fedele was
the one who ended up pushing Hornish Sr. down.  He has lost his hard card, granted
by the League via the AGR team.
Hat Trick!
July 12 - Tony Cotman has climbed the ladder in the Champ Car World Series to
Executive Vice President of Operations.

Currently the Race Director for the series, Cotman will maintain the position on top of
his new duties until a replacement is named. His new role will take on the duties of
the day-to-day operations, reporting to CCWS president and CEO Steve Johnson.

Cotman has worked at Gelles Racing, Forsythe-Green Racing, and Andretti Green
Racing.
             Formula One bids U.S. Goodbye

July 12 - Tony George said today, ""After several discussions, Bernie Ecclestone
and I were unable to agree how to keep Formula One in Indianapolis for the near
term.  However, we have agreed to leave the door open for a potential future date.

"It has been a pleasure having the United States Grand Prix at Indianapolis, and I
hope that as we approach our Centennial Era at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway,
an opportunity might present itself that would allow its return."

Question: Do you think you would have had the USGP next if you had just been
willing to write a big enough check?

Tony George: I suppose, but again money's not the only factor. Again, we're
interested in growing this, and I don't see all the elements being there for us to do
that right now. We don't have a title sponsor in hand, we don't have the commitment
of national TV, and there are other things. We could agree on the date, and that
would be great; we could agree on money and that would be great, but there are
other things to consider.
                    Nashville Indycar Race Rain Out

July 14 - A IRL night race was rained out in Nashville Tennessee.
The cars made it as far as the starting grid before the rain began.After a delay of
nearly three hours, the race at Nashville Superspeedway was rescheduled for
Sunday afternoon.
IT WILL BE BROADCAST AT 1pm ON ESPN2.   It was the first
rain postponement in the IndyCar Series since June 2000 at the Texas Motor
Speedway.

The teams will have to shuffle their strategies for Sunday's daytime race. The event
was scheduled to be contested in cooler night temperatures but will now likely be
held in blistering midday heat on the only concrete oval of the series' 17-race
schedule.

Scott Dixon is slated to start the race from the pole, followed by Dario Franchitti,
Tony Kanaan and Sam Hornish Jr.

"It's really disappointing as it kind of breaks up the momentum," Dixon said.

Kanaan and Hornish met earlier Saturday to smooth over friction between them after
an altercation following last week's race at Watkins Glen.

Kosuke Matsuura was dropped from 13th to the last starting position after his
Super Aguri Panther Racing car failed a post-qualifying inspection. The team's
appeal was denied.
Spying in Formula One

July 12 - The McLaren Formula One team was
charged by the sport's governing body Thursday
with unauthorized possession of secret Ferrari
documents.

McLaren was summoned to appear before FIA's
world motor sport council in Paris on July 26 to
explain how it gained possession of the
documents, including information that can be
used to design, engineer, build, check, test,
develop and run a 2007 Ferrari F1 car.

The case reached the High Court in London on
Wednesday when McLaren chief designer
Mike
Coughlan
, who was suspended by his team last
week when documents were found in his house,
agreed to tell Ferrari how he got hold of its design
secrets.

Coughlan has been linked to Ferrari's head of
performance
Nigel Stepney, who has already
been fired by the team for allegedly sending the
780-page technical document to Coughlan.

Stepney has denied it, although Ferrari won a
court order to search the Coughlans' home and
the documents were found, along with computers
which are set to be examined by experts.

Ferrari has also taken legal action in Italy against
Stepney.
Bernie Ecclestone: "Let's see if we miss America."
Tthe United States is a key market for the car manufacturers who dominate the
sport and own most of the teams.

"The automobile market in the USA is the biggest one for Mercedes-Benz
outside Germany," said Mercedes motorsport vice-president
Norbert Haug,
whose company owns 40 percent of championship leaders McLaren.

"For the BMW Group, the USA Grand Prix is of key importance in so far as the
United States is our biggest market," said BMW Sauber boss
Mario Theissen
in a team preview of Sunday's race.

"We sell more cars there than in Germany and also have our biggest production
sites outside Germany."
 F1 European Grand Prix

July 22 - Rain fell at the very beginning of the
European g.p. causing havoc as cars on dry tires
slid off the course.  
Markus Winkelhock started
from the pitlane with intermediate tires.  He was
hence able to grab the lead!

The race was red flagged and restarted.  While
Kimi Raikkonen started from pole and was having
a good race, his car failed near the end.  Rain
again fell at the very end of the race.  
Fernando
Alonso
made a tough pass on Felipe Massa to
grab the lead with five laps to go.
July 22 - Scott Dixon has won the last three Indycar races in a row - Watkins Glen, Nashville and Mid-Ohio.  He trails Dario Franchitti by 24
points.  Franchitti has also won three Indycar races this year - Indianapolis, Iowa and Richmond.  Tony Kanaan and Dan Wheldon have both
won two races this season.  Sam Hornish Jr., defending champion, has only won one race.
The Grand Marshal for the 2007 Allstate 400 At The Brickyard will be James
Denton
.  He's an actor who has become famous on ABC's television program,
"Desperate Housewives".  He will wave the green flag to start the race.


The Pace Car will be this Corvette.
Joe Nemechek will have a ride this weekend at Indianapolis, but which car he will drive remains in limbo.

E&M Motorsports is looking to put Nemechek behind the wheel of its No. 08 car, but Ginn Racing may
have a sponsor for the No. 13 -- the car from which Nemechek was bounced last week.

E&M Motorsports had plans to run several races this season, beginning at Indianapolis with John
Andretti at the wheel. Andretti has other commitments this weekend -- he will join the IMS Radio Network
as a broadcaster -- so the team called on Nemechek.

Nemechek was at the team's Charlotte shop on Monday.

Nemechek is one of eight drivers who have raced in all 13 Cup events held at Indianapolis Motor
Speedway. Two times he has finished inside the top 20, with an 18th in 2000 and a 17th in 2004.
Perhaps more importantly is Nemechek's ability to qualify the car at the 2.5-mile historic speedway.

His average starting position is 16.2, including five top-10 starts and a front-row spot in 1997. With E&M
Motorsports, Nemechek must qualify on time due to lack of owner points with the team.
In 18 starts this season, Nemechek's best finish was a ninth-place finish in the season-opening Daytona 500, his only top-10 of the season.
His average finish is 26.2. Despite an ongoing fight to keep his No. 13 inside the top 35 in owner points, the only race Nemechek missed this
season was at Bristol.

Nemechek was released from Ginn Racing a week ago as the team was re-evaluating its teams due to lack of sponsorships (read more).

"It's very disappointing, but part of the business is it takes a lot of dollars to make these Cup teams go 'round and it seems like it never
stops," Nemechek said following his release.
Draft Track, a technical innovation developed by ESPN and SportVision, will debut with the telecast of the Allstate 400 at the
Brickyard on July 29.

When ESPN's producers activate Draft Track, viewers will see air flowing over and behind race cars as they speed around the
track, whether there is one car or a multi-car pack on the television screen. The Draft Track airflow visualization will change as
the cars, in relation each other, change position in real time on the racetrack, including passing, racing side by side or when
cars are lined up nose to tail. The new effect initially will be used on replays.
BRICKYARD 400 NEWS!
Ted Denton plays "Mike Delfino" on Desperate
Housewives.  Nicollette Sheridan played Edie Britt.
Juan Pablo Montoya will make history when he races in the Brickyard
400 for Ganassi Racing.  He will be the first driver to ever compete in all
three of the major races to be held at the historic Indianapolis Motor
Speedway.

Montoya ran away with the 2000 Indy 500, while a CART driver racing for
Chip Ganassi.

Montoya went to Formula One in 2001 and drove in the U.S. Grand Prix
for Williams F1 Team, as well as McLaren.  He never won that race, his
best was 4th place in 2002.

Interestingly, Montoya swapped race cars with Jeff Gordon four years
ago and they practiced running on  the F1 track at  Indy.  Now Montoya is
really in NASCAR, will Gordon someday test F1's waters?
Trackside - Friday July 27 - 50,000 fans showed up today at IMS, but the weathermen were correct predicting rain today.

NASCAR teams were unable to practice today as they require a dry track.  

The rain-out means that fans can use their Friday passes to get in tomorrow on Saturday, for qualifying.

Country music concerts and autograph sessions helped take the boredom out of this rainy day.

Click for 2007 Brickyard 400 Entry List
Bobby East led all 100 laps of the J.D. Byrider 100 K&N USAC Silver Crown Championship Series race Thursday night at
O'Reilly Raceway Park at Indianapolis.

Click for other Races During Brickyard 400 Weekend
July 27 - Robert Yates Racing and Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing have entered into a letter of intent for a partnership in
NASCAR's NEXTEL Cup and Busch Series. The team will be named
Yates/Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing, effective
immediately.  I bet Newman shows up at IMS now!
The No. 24 Chevrolet driven this weekend by four-time Allstate 400 at the
Brickyard winner
Jeff Gordon will sport a special paint scheme featuring "Have No
Fear," the canine hero from the Walt Disney Pictures' upcoming comedy
"Underdog," on the hood along with logos for The Jeff Gordon Foundation.

Gordon unveiled the car Thursday during the sixth annual Jeff Gordon Foundation
Bowling Tournament at Western Bowl in Indianapolis.

Die-cast available at
www.jeffgordonfoundation.org. Proceeds benefit children with
chronic and life-threatening diseases.
Kyle Petty will be making his 800th start in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series when
he takes the green flag in Sunday's Allstate Brickyard 400. Only six drivers have
reached the milestone of 800 starts, including Kyle's father Richard Petty, who sits
atop the list with 1,185 starts.
July 28 - Reed Sorenson had the fastest practice lap today, the only practice the
Cup boys will be getting before qualifying, due to rain yesterday.  Reed lapped at
48.887 seconds (avg 184.098 mph).
     <<<< BRICKYARD QUALIFYING >>>>

July 28 - Ganassi drivers Reed Sorenson and Juan Montoya will start the
Brickyard 400 from the front row.  Sorenson is the youngest pole sitter ever
for the race.

Robby Gordon crashed his main car earlier in practice.  He then failed to qualify a
new car later in the day, but he will get into the field on the strength of Team
Owner Points.  Slow Kyle Petty has to rely on Team Owner Points as well.  A.J.
Allmendinger crashed while attempting to qualify.   Dale Jarrett
, Jeremy Mayfield,
Joe Nemechek, Kenny Wallace, and Kevin LePage
also failed to qualify for the
43-car field.

Click here for Qualifying Results / Starting Lineup
                             <<<< The Brickyard 400 >>>>

July 29 - The weather was beautiful in Indianapolis today with temperatures in the
80's.  

Jeff Green got into the turn 3 wall   Jimmie Johnson did too.  Johnson's car caught
fire and he beat a hasty retreat!

Ryan Newman wrecked in Turn 4 on lap 20.

Kasey Kahne tangled with Tony Raines coming out of Turn 1 on Lap 40.

On lap 47, six drivers were involved in a wreck between turns 1 and 2 including
Scott Riggs,  Bill Elloitt and Jamie McMurrary.

Johnny Sauter, Casey Mears Elliott Sadler, Kyle Petty and Scott Riggs crashed in
turn 3 on lap 53.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. led laps at the beginning of the race.  His engine blew on lap
135.

Clean-shaven
Tony Stewart led the second half of the race and he dueled with
Kevin Harvick, who led toward the end of the race.  Stewart passed him back with
9 laps to go.  He damaged Harvick's fender which sent him backward in the field.

Juan Montoya passed Jeff Gordon.  They finished 2nd and 3rd.  

Click here to view Race Results

Click here for my photos from race day