August 2009
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RACE NEWS & VIEWS
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Indy Speedway News Index
BMW Leaving F1
Aug 4 - BMW will not continue its Formula 1 campaign after the end of the 2009 season. Resources freed up as a result are to be dedicated to
the development of new drive technologies and projects in the field of sustainability. BMW will continue to be actively involved in other motor
sports series. BMW currently supplies engines to the Sauber team.  
BMW will appear on the starting grid in the touring car series and young
driver promotion program in Formula BMW. This will be supplemented by
BMW's participation in ALMS, the American Le Mans Series, endurance
races and close-to-production customer sports. BMW achieved 8 victories
from 1982-85 with Brabham, a win with Benetton in 1986, 10 victories with
Williams from 2000-2005, and a win with Sauber in 2008.
Nelson Piquet Fired from Renault F1
Aug 4 - Nelson Piquet, jr. has confirmed his departure from the
Renault F1 team, but he has not gone quietly... Team boss
Flavio Briatore has come under considerable fire.

"I believe without doubt in my talent and my performance. I didn't
get this far by getting bad results. Anyone who knows my history
knows that the results I am having in F1 do not match my CV and
my ability. The conditions I have had to deal with during the last
two years have been very strange to say the least - there are
incidents that I can hardly believe occurred myself. If I now need
to give explanations, I am certain it is because of the unfair
situation I have been in the past two years. I always believed that
having a manager was being a part of a team and having a
partner. A manager is supposed to encourage you, support you,
and provide you with opportunities. In my case it was the opposite.
Flavio Briatore was my executioner."
IndyCar Silly Season
Aug 8 - IndyCar driver Robert Doornbos is moving to HVM
Racing starting now.  He will drive for them in 2010 also.  This is a
reunion, as he drove for the team in Champ Car in 2007, where
he won two non-oval races.

Driving for Newman Haas Lanigan Racing this season, he has
averaged a mid-field finish.

Replacing him at HLR is
Oriol Servia, who race in this year's Indy
500.  Servia drove for HLR in 2005.

Also,
Richard Antinucci is back for the CURB/Agajanian/Team
3G, as the Indy Lights runner-up of a year ago is confirmed for
this weekend and the final road course event at Infineon in two
weeks.
Jaques Lazier and Stanton Barrett will alternate on the
ovals, Barrett running at Japan owing to Japanese sponsors.
Conquest Racing is also in flux. They will run three of the final four
events with two different drivers,
Nelson Philippe and four-year
IndyCar veteran
Kosuke Matsuura.

Philippe returns for his fourth tour of duty with the team at Infineon
and Homestead in an "I drive green" livery similar to his run at
Indianapolis for HVM. At Japan, Matsuura will drive the #34 CLICK
Securities car. Prior driver
Alex Tagliani and the team endured
an acrimonious parting of ways after Edmonton.

The field drops to 21 this weekend without
Will Power, Tomas
Scheckter
and Sarah Fisher, but with the addition of the second
HVM car it's only a net loss of two. From Infineon on the grid is
expected to be at least 22 cars with the possibility of more.
Aug 13 - Frank Montagny has been hired to drive a fifth car for
Andretti Green Racing later this month.  The Frenchman will be in
the cockpit of the No. 25 car at Infineon Raceway. He made seven
starts for Michael Andretti’s team in the American Le Mans Series
last year.  Montagny also made seven starts in 2006 in Formula
One and helped Andretti’s sports-car team win at Belle Isle last
year.
Badoer To Fill For Massa
Aug 13 - Michael Schumacher will not be making a return to
Formula One in order to sub for injured Ferrari driver
Felipe
Massa
after all.  Schumacher broke some bones in his neck and
skull in a motorcycle accident last February.  His neck has not
healed enough for him to withstand the severe G-forces of
Formula One.  Ferrari test driver
Luca Badoer will sub for Massa
instead.
Kallio Substituting for Stoner
Aug 13 - Casey Stoner, the 2007 MotoGP champion, has been
fighting off what he thought was a minor illness that left him tired
since the Catalunyan Grand Prix held in mid-June. The Australian
is a fighter though and kept up the pace as best he could for what
was a three-way tie in the championship when the series departed
Spain.

Stoner has been diagnose with a form of anemia that causes
severe fatigue and he needs to sit out the next three events,
effectively removing the Aussie out of the title fight this season.

Ducati has moved
Mika Kallio up from the Ducati satellite team,
Pramac Racing, to fill the seat. Kallio from Finland sits 15th in the
points. The 800cc rookie moved over to the top class in MotoGP
after two years contesting the 250cc class with a best title finish of
third scoring three wins last year. Prior to that he had competed in
the 125cc class, finishing as the sub-champion in 2005 and '06.
Another Car for the Leno Garage
Aug 13 - Jay Leno is buying one of the ten Bertone
Mantides.  This re-wrapped Corvette ZR1 costs $2 million.  
Far out.
Rolex Grand-Am to Test at Indy
Aug 14 - Grand-Am Road Racing announced it will sanction a test
at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Thursday, Sept. 3, featuring
10 cars from its Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series presented by
Crown Royal Cask No. 16.

The Daytona Prototype teams scheduled to test include the No.
90 Spirit of Daytona Racing Porsche Coyote. 2004 Indianapolis
500 winner
Buddy Rice is scheduled to co-pilot the No. 90.

"We are very excited to have this opportunity to see the
performance of our sports cars at the legendary Indianapolis
Motor Speedway," said Grand-Am President Roger Edmondson. "I
look forward to the overall reaction from our participants, fans and
media, and determining the future possibility of our series
competing at this iconic facility."

Fans and media are welcome to attend the test to see the teams
testing on the F1 and MOTO-GP track configurations. The test will
be used to gauge the level of interest of holding a sports car
event at the facility among the fans, teams and media.
Philippe and Power Out At Sonoma
Aug 22 - During practice for the IndyCar race at Sonoma, Ca;
Nelson Philippe spun and stalled his car perpendicular to the
track just over a hill.  
E.J. Viso came over the hill, dodged with
fast reflexes, but still clipped Philippe's front wing,  tearing up his
own car.  A  second later,
Will Power zoomed over the hill at over
100 mph and he did not dodge, but plowed right into the side of
Philippe's car.

Power had back pain and was airlifted to the hospital.  The
doctors found fractures to his L2 and L4 (lumbar) vertebrae. He
was scheduled for magnetic resonance imaging.

Philippe suffered and injured right foot and was taken to the
hospital.  Per his team, he sustained an "open fracture of the left
foot and underwent surgery".

Neither driver will compete in Sunday' race.

Viso escaped serious injury.
Andretti To Take Over Team
Aug 14 - AGR principles Kevin Savoree, Kim Green and
Michael Andretti announced on Thursday they have agreed to
part ways with the racing team while Green and Savoree take
over the promotional business that includes staging races at St.
Petersburg and Toronto.
Franchitti Wins His Fourth Race of Year
Aug 23 - While Dario Franchitti (Ganassi Racing) won the
Sonoma IndyCar road race from pole, it was a very exciting race
behind him, with a big wreck on the first lap.  These new IndyCar
rules, such as the "push to pass" button, appear to be giving us
some really exciting racing!  Justin Wilson slid into a turn sideways
near the end of the race and powered out amonst traffic, almost
as if he were in a drifting contest - too cool!  Rookie
Mike
Conway
(Dreyer & Reinbold Racing) finished in third behind Ryan
Briscoe (Penske.)

Scott Dixon (Ganassi Racing) finished back in14th, thanks to a
bump on the last turn by
Marco Andretti (AGR.)

With four races to go,
Ryan Briscoe is first in points.  Franchitti,
Dixon and
Helio Castroneves still have a mathmatical chance of
capturing the IndyCar championship.
Three Guys From Brazil
Aug 24 - Rafaelo, Ramiro and Teco left southern Brazil
July 19th on their motorcycles heading for Indianapolis just
to see the
Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix.  If you see
them at the track this week, give 'em a shout out!  Check
out their
TRIP PHOTOS or read their JOURNAL if you
speak Portuguese.
MotoGP Driver Standings Leading to Indy
Photos of MotoGP Drivers and Bikes

Schedule for Indy MotoGP Weekend
<<<<< DAY 1 - MotoGP Practice >>>>>>>
Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix
Bridgestone Tire Comments
Aug 28 - Bridgestone have chosen to bring asymmetric rear tyres
to Indianapolis because of the imbalance between the ten left-
and six right-handed corners, most of which are slow and short
unlike the generally long and fast lefts. The circuit is abrasive and
durability is the key challenge for tyres so the hard and extra hard
compound rears have been selected for the job. Braking stability
is also essential due to the multitude of first and second gear
corners, meaning that the medium and hard compound front
Bridgestone slicks are the two available options.

A manager commented, "Indianapolis is like three tracks in one
with the opening section designed for MotoGP bikes, the Formula
One infield and the traditional oval course, and there are several
surface changes because of this during a lap. The circuit is
generally very abrasive although the level of abrasion changes
with the surface meaning that our tyres will have to cope with a
wide range of track conditions during each lap.

"The infield offersa succession of slow corners followed by hard
acceleration and the circuit is also quite demanding on the front
tyre due to some very hard braking points. We have chosen our
asymmetric rear tyres for this race because the circuit uses the
left side of the tyres much harder than the right sides - there are
more left-handers and generally the fastest corners are lefts."
NICKY HAYDEN -- (Ducati MotoGP Team)

"It feels good to be near the top again! The bike felt pretty good
from the beginning and after trying something new on the other
bike, which didn't work, we went back to the standard setting and
went from there. The track was really tricky because there were
sections with a lot of standing water and others where the grip
was amazing - you had to be really on your toes. Midway through
the session a funny line formed -- I'm not sure if some kind of
chemical came up through the asphalt from when they cleaned it
but it was pretty slick. Over the last couple of laps I just went for it
because I knew I had a chance to be on top today and this is the
highest I've been in any session this year. Truthfully though I
need dry track time because I tend to start the weekend slowly
and build up, so to lose a session to the weather is not an
advantage to me. We need to start out strong in the morning and
go from there. P1 would have been sweet but P2 at just a tenth of
a second off gives us reason to smile. I'm delighted to be racing
here at Indy so let's hope tomorrow brings more joy!"
DANI PEDROSA -- (Repsol Honda Team)

"This was a very good start to the weekend and in wet conditions
we are looking in good shape. It was raining for the whole session
and we had good grip, even though there were some big patches
of standing water around the track. I felt confident and was able to
push hard - and actually it's been a quite long time since I've felt
that confident in wet conditions and been happy to push to the
maximum. If it's dry tomorrow, that's also good for us, even though
the only thing we can really take forward from today's session is
the gearing information. This track is unusual to ride because it's
been designed to run in the other direction and so the apex of
some of the corners feels very strange. Still, even in the rain there
is a unique atmosphere here and it's a special place to ride."
Aug 28 - It rained before the start of MotoGP's practice session at
the speedway today.  

Here are comments from the two fastest drivers of the day:
Nicky Hayden
Dani Pedrosa
<<<<< DAY 2 - MotoGP Qualifying  >>>>>
Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix
Aug 29 - MotoGP Pole sitter Dani Pedrosa - "I'm really happy
with this pole position, smiled Pedrosa, "because we have been
fast all weekend so far - in the wet as well as the dry - so this is
very positive. The lap times are quick and also consistent which
should give us a good chance in the race tomorrow. I've been
comfortable on the machine from the start and things have just
clicked here - it's not as if we've made any big changes for this
race. We can't relax at all though because I'm sure the other
riders will improve and we know how strong our rivals have
been this season. So we must make a few small adjustments to
make sure we have the best possible package tomorrow. "
Valentino Rossi will be looking for a back-to-back win at Indy
to add yet another piece of history in his legendary career. But
the task won't be easy with Pedrosa back on top after a painful
injury caused him to stall on what looked to be a promising
season. The Spaniard has fully recharged to good health and
broke the pole time set by Rossi last year.

Jorge Lorenzo will also be a threat to Rossi's hopes this
weekend. The Italian's teammate has been the closest
challenger for much of the season and with
Casey Stoner on
the sidelines as he recovers from anemia, the title fight will be
between Rossi and Lorenzo.
<<<<< DAY 3 - MotoGP Race Day  >>>>>
Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix
Aug 30 - Jorge Lorenzo will take home a little bit of history with him
today. The Spaniard will go down as the winner of the MotoGP
series in the month of its centennial celebration. The first bikes to
tackle the legendary circuit hit the bricks in August 1909. It would be
99 years for the first MotoGP event at Indy. One year later Lorenzo
and the Fiat Yamaha team have ushered in a new era at the
Brickyard, which will hopefully last for another hundred years.

"This is fantastic for me and for my team!" beamed Lorenzo. "I've
had two crashes in a row but now I've won, and my closest rivals
have crashed instead. Of course I'm sorry for them but these are the
highs and lows of racing and it's an amazing result for me. I was
strong all weekend and I really want to thank my team for giving me
a great bike. I had a hard start and I had to try very hard to pass
people and get back to third, but then I had a good rhythm and I was
able to go with Valentino and Dani. Once Dani had gone I knew it
would be a hard fight between me and Valentino and in fact when he
crashed I didn't realise for a while, because I misread my pit-board
and thought it said +0! Anyway, my bike was great and from then on
it was quite easy, I just stayed focused. I had great fun on the
slow-down lap with the fans and I am so happy to win here at this
amazing track. The championship was almost gone but in one day
things have changed a lot. It will be hard but we won't give up!"

Lorenzo started today's race in third, alongside polesitter
Dani
Pedrosa
and teammate Valentino Rossi. The Spaniard watched
as his two rivals dropped to the side and the lead into his lap. First
Pedrosa had an off that sent him to the back of the field, he
eventually finished tenth and salvaged some points.

"This result was a real shame, but sometimes it happens," shrugged
Pedrosa. "We did a great job all through practice and qualifying, I
was confident for the race and of course I was hoping to win today. I
was pushing very hard at the start of the race and perhaps I pushed
too much. There was some cloud cover today and maybe the front
tyre was a little cooler than before, but whatever the reason, I made
a mistake and lost the front. I'm sorry for the team because they've
worked really hard for me, and also to the fans who've given me
great support. I wanted to win in American again but it wasn't to be.
There was some damage to the bike - the handlebar was bent
inwards and the footpeg was worn away quite badly, but actually I
was able to recover and ride at a fast pace to take some points at
the end. Looking on the positive side, we've been very fast here and
that means we can take a lot of confidence to Misano next weekend."

Rossi wasn't as fortunate. Inheriting the lead from Pedrosa, the
Italian was soon pounced upon by Lorenzo. The pass for the lead
happened on lap nine, the battle for the championship unfolding
right before the eyes of the American fans. With Rossi in second his
title hope would have still be solid but then the unexpected
happened on lap ten. The Doctor went off track and dumped his
bike. Rossi tried to keep running, but a damaged throttle meant he
was forced to retire two laps later. The title fight between teammate
has heated up one more time with Rossi failing to score a single
point from today.

"Today is a disappointment of course!" said Rossi. "We struggled
here with the setting all weekend but we made an improvement
today and I got a good start and was able to stay in touch with
Pedrosa. Once he fell, I knew it would be between Jorge and I but I
honestly don't know how it would have finished, because Jorge was
very fast today. Of course, it would have been better to have
finished second than not to finish at all! Unfortunately I ran wide on
to a dirty part of the track at turn one and lost the front. I tried to
carry on but there was a problem with my throttle and it wasn't
possible. I want to congratulate Jorge for his victory and now we look
forward to coming back to the front at Misano. We are still leading
the championship and this is the most important thing."

With Pedrosa and Rossi out of the picture podium spots opened up
to the mid pack riders that put in a lot of work and deserve the
reward.
Alex De Angelis crossed the bricks in second, his first
podium in the premiere class. The Gressini Racing rider started in
fourth but had to earn his podium today after fighting off American
Collin Edward. The Texan would go on to finish fifth.
"It wasn't as much fun as thought it was going to be," admitted
Edwards, "to be honest with you, I had hopes of better result at my
home race. I did the same times I did all weekend but I struggled with
some grip issues, it just felt like everything was pivoting on the rear,
it was like speedway, as soon as I got the bike on the side the rear
came around and that is not the fast way. I couldn't put any load on
the rear. At the end of the day we had the same tyres as the guy
who won the race so whether it was something in our set-up or riding
style, I don't know. All I could was watch Nicky and Andrea walk away
from me and I took some big risks on the brakes. Once Nicky got by
it became hard to manage and I think we turned a tyre on the rim, I
had a lot of vibration over the final ten laps."

Instead, the best American today was third placed
Nicky Hayden,
the best result for the Kentucky Kid since running with the Ducati
team. Seeing Stoner is out of the picture with Anemia for at least a
few more races, all hope within the team rest on Hayden for a strong
last part of the season. The final podium spot on home soil today
might be just what Hayden and the team needs to start winning
races together.

"It feels great to be on the podium here at Indianapolis," smiled
Hayden, "and I want to thank all the team, my friends, family and
fans for their support because this has been a tough season and
I've needed every one of them. I was really careful at the start
because I watched the 125cc race earlier on and the guy in my grid
position made a jump start -- it made me think that I really didn't want
to do that today! As a result I didn't get a great start but I saw
Lorenzo charge past a few guys, making a hole in the pack, so I
tried to follow him. I pushed hard and in the middle of the race I went
as fast as I have all weekend, but I didn't have any more than that.
Dovizioso came on strong at the end so I gave myself a little pep talk
and made sure I was ready for whatever he had. He was going to
have to come up with something special to keep me off the podium
here at Indy! Thankfully I kept it together and brought it home. We
don't have long to the next race at Misano but I'm in the mood for a
little party tonight. My buddies have seen the sun come up every
day since Friday but hopefully they've got something left in the tank
for me!"

Andrea Dovizioso came in fourth, some consolation for the Repsol
Honda team after Pedrosa dropped out of the lead. The Italian
finished the race just behind Hayden, pressuring the Ducati right to
the end.

"I have to thank the team for the incredible job they have done this
weekend," said Dovizioso, "the bike has been fantastic ever since
we unpacked it on Friday and we have gone from strength to
strength over the course of the weekend. They also gave me a lot of
confidence this morning and honestly I think they had more belief
that I would be on the podium today than I did! It is a fantastic result
but it is no fluke because we have been in great form over the last
five races. It is a long time since I was on the podium back in the
250cc class and I had almost forgotten what a great feeling it was.
Now I want to enjoy it and celebrate with another good performance
at my home race next weekend."

With the second American event checked off the calendar the series
will head to Misano, Italy for the San Marino GP. It will be a quick
week packing up all the gear and sending it across the pond before
the Italian race. Rossi will have just enough time to think about what
went wrong at Indy today. Without a doubt the Italian ace will be
resolved to win at home after the mistake. Chances are the 2010
Indianapolis GP will also now be a must have on the reigning
champ's list.

Marco Simoncelli won the 250cc race with team Metis Gilera.

Pol Espargaro  won the 125cc race with the Derbi Racing Team.
Jorge Lorenzo
RACE RESULTS
Favorite Valentino Rossi Wrecks
Polesitter Dani Pedrosa Wrecked