Nov 2 - Alexander Rossi has claimed his maiden GP2 victory in Abu Dhabi after a sensational performance that will certainly help his cause to become the first American Formula One driver since Scott Speed in 2007.
Rossi has balanced his GP2 campaign with testing duties at Caterham, and the support series has seen him flourish with three podium finishes in 2013. However, after scoring his first pole position yesterday, Rossi went on to win the race ahead of Britain’s Jolyon Palmer.
Fans in the U.S. will get the chance to see Rossi run at Austin later this month when he takes part in the first free practice session for the Caterham F1 team.
(GP3 is a feeder series to GP2 which is a feeder to Formula 1.)
Another American doing well in the FIA world is Conor Daly, son of Derek Daly and resident of Indianapolis.
Daly won a GP3 race this year and finished the season in 3rd place. Daly also competed in this year's Indy 500, driving for A.J. Foyt.
Nov 10 - Additional spectator mounds and grandstands will enhance the fan experience for the sports car races July 25th and the entire MotoGP weekend in August by providing more exciting vantage points to see the action in the infield section of the course.
Hulman & Company CEO Mark Miles has completed the formation of his leadership team. Jay Frye, a racing executive who successfully transformed two teams into NASCAR Sprint Cup contenders, is the new chief revenue officer. C.J. O'Donnell, who has worked in key marketing positions for various brands within Ford Motor Company, will join Hulman Motorsports as chief marketing officer. The appointments complete a reorganization that began earlier this year. This includes combining the commercial functions of INDYCAR and IMS, including sales, licensing, marketing and communications, into Hulman Motorsports, which O'Donnell and Frye will lead. In May, Derrick Walker was named as president of INDYCAR operations and competition. Other members of the Hulman leadership team include Jeff Belskus, president and chief financial officer of Hulman & Company; Gretchen Snelling, vice president and chief legal counsel; Robby Greene, president of IMS Productions; and Doug Boles, president of Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corporation.
The huge and wonderful "Celebration of Automobiles" car show will return for a fourth year on May 8-10, 2014. Four-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser will serve as the honorary head judge and he will determine which classic/vintage car will win the prestigious Driver's Choice Award. There will be a special spotlight on cars built in Indiana. The new addition to the show is the inclusion of motorcycles from 1910-70. Also an artist pavilion featuring world-class automotive art is another new attraction for 2014.
Miles spoke on TV today about the possibility of changes to the qualifying format for the Indy 500. He said that all the drivers will qualify on Saturday, but the order is only provisional. On Sunday, the drivers who qualified Saturday in positions 10-33 will re-qualify for those spots. During the last session of the day, the drivers who were in the fast 9 the previous day will now re-qualify for the first three rows of the grid.
2013 MotoGP Champion
Nov 10 - Mexican Marc Marquez, 20, has become the youngest ever MotoGP World Champion. He is also the first rookie to win the championship since Kenny Roberts in 1978.
The championship came down to the last race of the season. Marquez finished in third place with enough points to seal the championship over his main rival Jorge Lorenzo who won the race. Marquez won the title by a margin of just four points with 334 to Lorenzo’s 330.
Since starting his first MotoGP campaign at the start of this year, Marquez has broken practically every rookie record on his way to the world title including six race wins, 9 pole positions, 16 podiums and 11 fastest race laps.
First competing in the 125cc World Championship in 2008 Marquez had a steady climb through the ranks until he eventually clinched the title in 2010 and the graduated into the Moto2 class where he made an instant impression notching up multiple race wins. However, a nasty crash in first year of Moto2 saw Marquez suffering an eye injury that threatened to end his racing career but the Spaniard was dogged in his determination to continue to race and came back in 2012 to take the championship title.
Following his first ever podium at the season opener in Qatar, Marquez was an instant sensation and began what was to become one of the most exciting MotoGP seasons. His Moto2 style of riding was credited with getting that extra bit of speed from the bike. The smooth driving Lorenzo made a valiant effort for the championship, winning 5 of the last 7 races.
Marc Marquez - Repsol Honda
2014 IndyCar Testing
Nov 13 - IndyCar announced today that IZOD IndyCar Series teams will be permitted a total of 18 testing days, with the opportunity for additional bonus days, between now and the 2014 season finale.
Full-season IndyCar Series teams will have a total of 18 test days to be used in any combination of engine manufacturer tests, team tests, Open Tests, straight line and full-sized wind tunnel tests through the 2014 season finale at Auto Club Speedway.
"Our objective was to structure the testing rules so that everybody had equal opportunity and an equal number of days," said Derrick Walker, president, competition and operations, INDYCAR. "Rather than INDYCAR designating specific numbers for each category of testing, the onus is on teams to utilize days as they feel is best for their individual program."
Additionally, IndyCar Series teams can receive two bonus days by testing a current Indy Lights driver. Teams will have two additional days for testing rookie drivers and any new entrant will have four additional offseason team test days in addition to its allotment of 18 days.
Open Tests will be held at three venues that host 2014 IndyCar Series events:
• Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Ala., on Monday, March 17, and Tuesday, March 18. Spring training is mandatory for all Leaders Circle entrants.
• The newly modified Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course will host an Open Test on Wednesday, April 30.
• The 2-mile Auto Club Speedway oval will host an Open Test on Wednesday, Aug. 27.
Engine manufacturers Chevrolet and Honda have five on-track test days. Mileage amassed while using a manufacturer development engine does not count against a team's maximum of 10,000 miles during team tests, Open Tests and race events in a calendar year.
Season ends for Kimi Raikkonen
Nov 13 - Back pain is forcing Kimi Raikkonen into back surgery and consequently he will miss the final two F1 races of the season.
Lotus is expected to hire fellow Finn, Heikki Kovalainen to replace Raikkonen instead of their reserve driver, Davide Valsecchi because Kovalainen has the experience.
Franchitti Announces Retirement
Nov 14 - 3-Time Indy 500 Champion Dario Franchitti tweeted today that he has retired from racing.
He says that the injuries he sustained in the violent wreck in Houston last month is the cause. His doctors have told him he must stop racing.
He was looking forward to the 2014 IndyCar season and hopes that he can find a role to play in the league.
Between 1998-2002, Franchitti raced for Team Green in CART where he won 10 races.
Between 2003-2007, Franchitti won 8 races driving for Andretti, winning the championship and the Indy 500 in 2007.
He spent 2008 in NASCAR driving for Chip Ganassi.
He switched back to IndyCar in 2009 driving for Target Chip Ganassi Racing where he won the championship.
In 2010 Franchitti again won the championship as well as the Indy 500.
In 2011 he repeated that winning his third championship and third Indy 500.
Dario Franchitti's visage appeard on this year's Indy 500 ticket
IMS Road Course Construction
Nov 19 - A $5-million reconfiguration project to transform the existing Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course for the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis IndyCar Series race Saturday, May 10, 2014 was completed today. The new layout features more speed and hard braking zones to create more passing and competitive racing. The project took 63 days, the same number of days it took to pave the oval in 1909 with 3.2 million bricks!
12,878' = 2.439 miles = 3.925 Kilometers 5 9 1-2 degrees 46' 50' 2,503' = .474 mile = .763 kilometer 2,869' = .543 mile = .874 kilometer
Course Distance: Number of Left Turns Number of Right Turns Corner Banking Track Width Straightaway Width Back Straight Length Front Straight Length
Video of Tony Kanaan driving new Corvette on new road course.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship
Nov 18 - Jimmie Johnson won his sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup championship, nailing it down in the season finale at the Homestead-Miami Speedway. Going into the 36th and final race of the season, the Californian needed to finish 25th or better and by ending up ninth, he sealed the championship by a margin of 19 points.
For the 2013 season, the 37-year old driver won six times and earned 24 top 10’s with only one DNF in 36 races. During the 2013 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup, he won twice and had nine top-10s. For his career, he has totaled 66 victories, but it is the growing numbers of championships that are triggering national recognition and prompting comparisons to legendary drivers Dale Earnhardt and Richard Petty and their seven titles. This championship marked the 11th for Hendrick Motorsports.
Matt Kenseth finished second in the championship, but call this his best season, despite the fact that he won the series championship in 2003. "We didn't come up with the championship -- the championship is the ultimate goal," he said. "You always want that, but from a competitive standpoint, it's been by far the best season of my career. We led the most laps, qualified the best, most wins, all that stuff." The 41-year old moved from Roush Fenway Racing to Joe Gibbs Racing this year.
Jimmie Johnson, family and crew.
Vettel's Record Setting Season
Nov 24 - The Formula 1 season is over now and its time to look at Sebastian Vettel's record breaking season.
Vettel won thirteen of nineteen Formula 1 races this year tying the record set by Michael Schumacher in 2004. Vettel also had 16 podium finishes, 11-straight.
Vettel had 9 pole positions and 15 front row starts, 10-straight.
Vettel won the last nine races of the season. The only F1 driver to win nine consecutive races was Alberto Ascari, however Ascari's wins were spread over the 1952-53 season. Also, in comparison to other series, Richard Petty had 10-straight Nascar wins in 1967 and AJ Foyt had 7-straight IndyCar wins in 1964.
Vettel garnered 397 points this season which is more than any of the competing teams - ie. he didn't need a teammate this year to get Red Bull their constructors championship.
This year was Vettel's fourth consecutive championship. Juan Manuel Fangio scored four of his five championships in a row, between 1954-1957. Michael Schumacher won five of his seven championships in a row, between 2000-2004.
Vettel's Other Records:
In 2006, Vettel was BMW's Friday driver and became the youngest driver to participate in a Grand Prix weekend (19 years and 53 days old)
In 2007, he replaced an injured Robert Kubica at the US GP at the Indy Speedway where he finished 8th, becoming the youngest driver to score a championship point. He also is the youngest o lead a race, to secure pole position, and to win a race.
F1 Driver Changes
Felipe Massa is being replaced at Ferrari by Kimi Raikkonen.
Massa is replacing Pastor Maldonado at Williams.
Maldonado will probably be replacing Raikkonen at Lotus.
For some reason, McLaren is replacing Sergio Perez with Kevin Magnussen. We don't know yet where Perez will end up.
Mark Webber is retiring at age 37 and Daniel Ricciardo is replacing him at Red Bull, leaving his seat at Toro Rosso.
Replacing Ricciardo at Toro Rosso is Russian rookie Daniil Kvyat.
We will have to wait and see who drives for Force India, Sauber, Marussia and Caterham next year, although Jules Bianchi will remain at Marussia.
2009, he became the youngest ever Formula One runner up.
In 2010 he became the youngest ever Formula One world champion. In the years that followed he would be come the youngest ever double champion, triple champion, etc.
He currently has 45 pole positions which places him third all time.