Racing News (11783)
Racing News from around the World
Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion Selection Committee Expands and Taps Deep Historic Racing Knowledge Base29 Jan 2020 Written by Adam Sinclair
The experience level of the Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion Selection Committee grows to an unprecedented level as five specialists have joined the now 11-person committee. Their expertise will be put to the test as members research and evaluate entry requests to ensure that every car meets the high level of provenance, authenticity and period correctness to the day it originally was raced that is demanded in order to be accepted.
Their vast individual knowledge base is arguably the deepest for an event anywhere in the world, and when the final entry requests are received, applicants will know an international team of historic and classic car authorities are behind the scenes evaluating their race car.
The Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion will be held Aug. 13-16 at Monterey County’s WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca and is one of the cornerstones of the Monterey Classic Car Week, which kicks off with the Monterey Pre-Reunion Aug. 8 and 9, that attracts visitors from around the world.
Bruce Canepa (returning member) – Former professional race car driver, and now collector, historian, and restorer of authentic race and classic cars. He has participated in the Rolex Reunion nearly every year. He also was co-organizer of the three Porsche Rennsport Reunions held at Laguna Seca Recreation Area.
Paul Duchene (existing member) – For more than 40 years, he has been writing about classic cars for major newspapers and magazines and was executive editor of Sports Car Market magazine. He has also been announcing the races for the past 10 years.
Scott George (new member) – Scott is the curator for Miles Collier Collections, and vice president of the Revs Institute, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to Preserving the Future of the Past. He oversees the meticulous care, preservation and restoration of some of the most historically important automobiles and race cars in the world.
John Lamm (existing member) – Author and journalist for many magazines like Road & Track and Car and Driver, he has spent his career researching and writing about cars. He has attended every historic race in Monterey since its inception in 1974.
Patrick Long (new member) – Longtime factory Porsche race car driver, he has competed around the globe winning at Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring, and is a regular at the Rolex Reunion across multiple classes. He was on the last two Porsche Rennsport Reunion selection committees and is dedicated to maintaining high driving standards for historic racers.
Chris MacAllister (new member) – He has competed in the Historic/Reunion event since the early ‘90s, drives historic Formula 1 internationally and has served as a group steward at prior Rolex Monterey Motorsport Reunions. He also is on the Board of Directors of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.
Mark Osborne (new member) – A frequent participant racing in Monterey and Goodwood, he is Global Director of Motorsport for Bonhams, where he oversees vetting each car’s heritage.
Andy Prill (existing member) – One of England’s most respected Porsche authorities and restorers, he is owner of Prill Porsche Classic. A qualified mechanical engineer, he annually races in Monterey, Goodwood and across the globe.
Darius Sadeghi (new member) – An avid car enthusiast, he is responsible for committee oversight and is a staunch advocate for ensuring authenticity and correctness of each entered race car.
Murray Smith (existing member) – Historic racing expert and a voice for accuracy and authenticity for competing cars, Murray has been involved in the Rolex Reunion for many years. He also is the organizer of the Historic Festival at Lime Rock Park, which is entering its 38th year.
Cris Vandagriff (existing member) – Head of the event’s scrutineering team, he owns HMSA (Historic Motor Sports Association) and runs historic racing events in the U.S. and Canada. Having been involved in racing his entire life, he is a highly-respected resource to ensure the car is prepared to the most period-correct manner.
Bill Warner (existing member) – An award-winning author and photojournalist, he is the founder of the acclaimed Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance. Bill is a regular competitor in historic racing and was co-chairman with Dr. Wolfgang Porsche at the 2018 Porsche Rennsport Reunion.
This year features some of the most popular groups for visitors. The throaty historic Can-Am and Trans-Am cars return to one of the original tracks where they once raced for championships. In all, there are 14 groups that span nearly every decade of motorsports history.
1927-1951/Pre-1940 Sports Racing & Touring
1947-1955 Sports Racing and GT
1955-1961 Sports Racing under & over 2000cc
1961-1966 GT under 2500cc
1963-1966 GT over 2500cc
1970-1984 Sports Racing under 2100cc
1973-1981 FIA, IMSA, GT, GTX, AAGT, GTU
1974-1979 Formula Atlantic
1981-1991 IMSA GTO/GTP
1963-1974 FIA Manufacturers Championship
Entry requests are being accepted through Feb. 22 on the Rolex Reunion event page at WeatherTechRaceway.com. Historically, nearly 1,000 entry requests are received for the internationally-renowned event. For more information, visit WeatherTechRaceway.com or call 831.242.8201.
The 2020 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca season kicks off April 16-19 with the Sea Otter Classic; Trans Am SpeedFest returns May 1-3; MotoAmerica Superbike SpeedFest at Monterey July 10-12; Ferrari Challenge Series July 23-26; the Monterey Pre-Reunion August 8-9; Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion August 13-16; and Monterey SpeedWeek consisting of Monterey SportsCar Championship (IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship) September 11-13 and the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey (NTT IndyCar Series) September 18-20.
Max Force Racing PR
Nolan Pope will kickstart his season by heading to Myrtle Beach (S.C.) Speedway this weekend with Lee Faulk Racing and Development for the fifth annual Ice Breaker.
The first season of the six-year partnership between the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series and General Tire was highlighted by spectacular door-to-door races all over Europe in perfect Pure Racing style. To further improve the experience for drivers and fans, in 2020 the Official Tyre Partner of the European NASCAR series will debut the first evolution of the NWES General Tire slick and wet tires.
General Tire and NWES focused both on performance and durability in developing the 2020 evolution of the NWES spec tires. The multiple test sessions during the 2019 season and this fall at the NWES test track in France and at Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, Spain, met all expectations.
Martin Heckers, Head of General Tire Motorsport said “We cannot be happier with our first NWES season as the Official Tyre Partner. The tyres performed exceptionally well and we witnessed extremely exciting races.
“General Tire’s dedicated motorsport unit is developing and manufacturing racing tyres in three shifts a day, six days a week, allowing us to already come up with a new tyre for the upcoming NWES season. This new tyre has been adjusted in line with further developments of the cars and considering data and driver feedback from our first season, we have developed an enhanced new NWES General Tire tyre specification."
“We are very much looking forward to the 2020 season and can’t wait for the cars to hit the circuits in Europe.”
The NWES regulations are very demanding for our Official Tyre Partner: strong cost containment and efficiency regulations allow a maximum of four tires per driver to race a full event including qualifying and two races. Drivers must also re-use two of these tires for the next event. NWES is therefore proving to be the ideal development ground for high-performance durable tires, which perfectly fit General Tire’s product characteristics. As in 2019, NWES teams will have to manage a maximum of 20 tires per driver during the season.
“General Tire is the perfect tire partner for the series, the company has a huge racing expertise and great products. Everybody was very motivated to introduce new tires in 2020 to continue enhancing the racing experience for both drivers and fans,” said NWES President - CEO Jerome Galpin. “I have to admit our needs for high-performance and very durable tires is really difficult to comply with, but General Tire put a lot of effort in providing us the best possible products.”
The new General Tire NWES GT tires will debut on April 25-26 at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, Spain. The European NASCAR Series will then make visit Brands Hatch in the United Kingdom, Autodrom Most in the Czech Republic and Raceway Venray in the Netherlands in the regular season. The Playoffs will begin in September at the Autodromo di Vallelunga in Rome, Italy, followed by Circuit Zolder in Belgium and the EuroNASCAR Finals in Hockenheim, Germany to close the season in October.
Car owner Tom Fraschetta seeks repeat win in east coast Indoor Dirt Nationals with driver Erick Rudolph29 Jan 2020 Written by Speedway Digest Staff
Erick Rudolph will be out to defend his East Coast Dirt Nationals title when the third running of the race is held inside Trenton, N.J.’s Cure Insurance Arena on Friday and Saturday, February 21st and 22nd. The Ransomville, N.Y. dirt Modified expert won the event in his first try in December of 2018 driving for Pennsylvania car owner Tommy Fraschetta.
After making a deal by phone to drive for Fraschetta, Rudolph met him for the first time at the event. They ended the weekend $5,000 richer and best of friends.
Rudolph’s career highlight have been well documented. He’s a three-time and defending Indoor Racing Series fueled by VP Racing Fuels Champion in events held on the concrete floors of different arenas. He’s also a champion and big winner during the outdoor season in dirt Modified competition. Rudolph came to Trenton’s dirt race after previously winning on the building’s concrete floor in a TQ Midget.
Fraschetta's career in the sport as a driver and owner has been a productive one as well, but his Dirt Nationals win with Rudolph behind the wheel of his nine year old Hyper Racing was a feeling completely apart from all else.
“It was the best thing I did as a car owner, getting hooked up with Erick,” Fraschetta, 49 of King Of Prussia, PA admits.
“He was racing TQ Midgets Indoors with Mark Lafler last year as a teammate to Tim Buckwalter who I have known for years. Tim suggested Erick drive my 600 at Trenton and it was a perfect fit.”
There's no reason to expect that 2020 will be any different than 2019 since Fraschetta will be bringing the same Dave Orange powered 600 Sprint to Trenton for Rudolph.
Fraschetta himself had a busy outdoor season driving the same car Rudolph drove to victory in Trenton over Billy Pauch Jr. He is a long time Micro racer who favors Greenwood Valley in northern Penna. for his racing despite it being 2 hours and 15 minutes from his home.
Fraschetta also mentors the Restricted 600 Micro class that Dylan Kontra, his 11 year old nephew, races in. It's a traveling series that is open to 12-16 year old racers, who race with a restrictor plate on their 600 motors that reduces the horsepower by half. It's intended as a stepping stone division. Kontra won races last year with Fraschetta at Lanco and Hamlin in addition to Greenwood Valley and was a contender at Linda's before crashing.
In last year's East Coast Dirt Nationals, Fraschetta fielded two cars with Central PA 410 ace Brian Montieth in the second car. Montieth was in Fraschetta's car for the 2017 running Indoor Dirt races as well.
“Brian is intending to race the car again this year but he has a potential conflict. Lincoln opens the same day and his car owner is one of the partners at Lincoln. If they don't run because of weather, Brian plans on being in the car at Trenton,” Fraschetta explained.
The car owner anticipates finding the track in approximately the same condition as it was in last year but is prepared for something different.
“These cars are adjustable in a lot of ways,” Fraschetta said. “No matter what your set up is, you can always change it and go faster.”
In last year's running of the East Coast Indoor Dirt Nationals, Rudolph took a car he had never before sat in, set it up to run completely the opposite of what most of his top rivals had done, then sailed to victory. He calmly won his ten lap heat race, the 20-lap A-Main Qualifier, then led every single lap of the 50-lap $5,000-to-win feature.
“Everything went together with Tom (Fraschetta) for the race,” Rudolph said, in praise of his car owner, for whom he had never raced before.
While the majority of the drivers pounded the outside cushion to make thrilling passes, Rudolph took the steady slow method determined to run the bottom.
“That’s the way I set it up, like a concrete car,” Rudolph smiled. In so doing, Rudolph spent almost all of the racing weekend glued to the bottom of the race track and it paid off.
Fraschetta's racing operation is a small one. “It’s always been my dad, my daughter, and me when we go racing. Taylor, my daughter, is special needs and she loves racing. She’s the one who keeps me going. So I told Brian and Erick going in that if we were fortunate enough to win this thing, Taylor gets the trophy or big check or whatever they are handing out. The money’s nice, but Taylor races for the trophies.”
And Rudolph delivered putting a huge smile on her face when both the trophy and huge check were presented to her.
Rudolph started his 2020 season off on the right foot with a TQ Midget victory in the opener of Indoor Auto Racing Series fueled by VP inside Allentown, Pa.’s PPL Center.
Before the non-point Trenton dirt event, Rudolph will compete in the third round of the BELFOR ‘Concrete Series’ inside Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall on Friday and Saturday, January 31 and February 1st. He’ll then head to Florida for two weeks of dirt Modified competition before returning in time for his trip to Trenton.
Rudolph will then conclude the Indoor Racing season on Friday and Saturday March 13th and 14th in a second year return to the brand new Expo Center located on the grounds of the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse. N.Y. Rudolph is also the defending race winner of the Syracuse A-Main event.
Tickets are currently available in a range of different prices for all the Indoor Series events through links on the www.indoorautoracing.com or at the venue box offices.
DIRTcar Northeast’s only full-fendered racing division returns in 2020, with an exciting array of DIRTcar Pro Stock Series action. A total of 11 Feature races and 10 premier dirt race tracks make up the Series schedule in 2020 across the Northeast and Canada.
2019 champion C.D. Beauchamp indicated that he would return to the Series in 2020 to defend his title. At the annual DIRTcar Awards banquet, C.D. took home over $2,000 for his Pro Stock title.
That title defense begins at the multi-grooved Autodrome Granby on Friday, June 19. The last time the DIRTcar Pro Stock Series stopped into the Quebec autodrome, in 2018, Bruno Cyr took the checkered flag.
Next up is the high-banked bullring of Cornwall Motor Speedway. 2019 DIRTcar Pro Stock Series champion C.D. Beauchamp started his 2019 season with a win at Cornwall. Will he make it a repeat or will the stars from both sides of the border take home the checkered flag?
It’s a special back to back weekend for the Series, with Lebanon Valley Speedway and Glen Ridge Motorsports Park Saturday and Sunday, July 25 and 26. This will be a unique test indeed, as Lebanon is arguably the biggest track on the tour while Glen Ridge is the smallest.
With a talented group of weekly teams, Lebanon Valley boasts some of the biggest Pro Stock car counts in the DIRTcar circuit. It will be a battle when Series travelers from all over the Northeast and Canada come to town.
The DIRTcar Pro Stock Series will make its second-ever attempt to race at Glen Ridge Motorsports Park in Fultonville, NY. The Series was scheduled there once before but was forced to cancel due to rain. Drivers are excited to finally take on this track this season on Sunday, July 26.
Along with sanctioning DIRTcar Pro Stocks in the Hoosier Racing Tire Weekly Championship, Can-Am Speedway plays host to a Series race on Friday, September 11. The Series hopes to complete its first race at The Nasty Track since Louie Jackson took the checkered flag in 2008.
The following day, Saturday, September 12, the Series hauls over to Weedsport Speedway to take part in the first Cavalcade Cup Weekend along with the Super DIRTcar Series and more. Last season Josh Coonradt won a thriller on this Central New York oval.
The Pro Stocks get back to it on Saturday, September 19 at Mohawk Int’l Raceway in Akwesasne, NY. Sid Harmer Jr. shocked the field in 2019, by picking up the Series win there. A week later, Albany-Saratoga Speedway and their talented group of weekly racers will clash on the Malta, NY oval. The Super DIRTcar Series will also be on hand with a $10,000-to-win showdown NAPA Super DIRT Week Qualifier.
Speaking of the greatest week in racing, the DIRTcar Pro Stocks will contest the Oswego Speedway for 50 laps on Sunday, October 11. The Pro Stocks have always put on great shows during NAPA Super DIRT Week, but since moving to Oswego Speedway, the racing has reached another an even higher level. It’s a can’t-miss race on the schedule.
The season wraps up at The Dirt Track at Charlotte, Thursday through Saturday, October 29-31, as a part of the DRIVEN World Short Track Championship. Competitors will face off on the biggest stage in dirt racing in two Features plus Heat Races and Time Trials.
Day/Date — Track — Location
Friday, June 12 - Autodrome Granby - Granby, QC
Sunday, July 5 - Cornwall Motor Speedway - Cornwall, ON
Saturday, July 25 - Lebanon Valley Speedway, West Lebanon, NY
Sunday, July 26 - Glen Ridge Motorsports Park - Fultonville, NY
Friday, Sept. 11 - Can-Am Speedway - Lafargeville, NY
Saturday, Sept. 12 - Weedsport Speedway - Weedsport, NY
Saturday, Sept. 19 - Mohawk Int’l Raceway - Akwesasne, NY
Saturday, Sept. 26 - Albany-Saratoga Speedway - Malta, NY
Sunday, Oct. 11 - Oswego Speedway - Oswego, NY
Thu-Sat - Oct. 29-31 - The Dirt Track at Charlotte (non-points) - Charlotte, NC
DIRTcar Series PR
Due to an unfortunate event, The Heart of Racing team has withdrawn from the 58th running of the Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona. Following an incident close to pit entry with the #47 PPM Lamborghini Huracan at close to five hours in, the car sustained damage that although is repairable, is not repairable on site.
The Heart of Racing team returned to Daytona International Speedway this weekend to compete as a newly re-established team, with the new-to-the-team Aston Martin Vantage GT3. Practice was focused on set up and learning as much about the car as possible. Qualifying went as expected with the strategy focused on the endurance aspect.
In addition, the team came here to raise awareness and funds for the 501(c)(3) Team Seattle Guild, which funds equipment for the pediatric cardiology unit of Seattle Children’s Hospital as well as research and training of doctors and surgeons worldwide. Thanks to the team and the Guild’s efforts this weekend, a figure of over $100,000 has been raised so far.
The team will now return to their Florida base to regroup and repair, with the aim to come back fighting at the next event in Sebring in March. Back in 2016, the team enjoyed a class victory at this event and look forward to the opportunity to prove themselves once again.
"Definitely not the way we wanted to end our weekend in Daytona. The race was hard from the beginning, but the team did a great job at finding ways to improve the car during the race. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the most out of what I think is a very good car, but I feel very lucky to be part of a great family and I am sure we will return stronger at Sebring.”
"Unfortunate end to a promising debut for the team, but racing is full of ups and downs and I am proud of the way the whole team and drivers executed this weekend. I look forward to Sebring and the rest of the year with this extended family, The Heart of Racing.”
BMW Outlasts Porsche Onslaught for Back-to-Back Rolex 24 At Daytona Wins in WeatherTech Championship GTLM Class28 Jan 2020 Written by Adam Sinclair