Hype Rumor: Indy Car To Add Circuit Of The Americas To 2015 Schedule?

Posted on 01.30.15 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

CircuitOfTheAmericas_COTA_logo

The Circuit Of The Americas is a beautiful race track in Texas that is essentially America’s answer to Abu Dhabi’s Yas Marina Circuit.  Despite the Circuit Of The Americas (or COTA) being a purpose built F1 track a few other motorsports have had lots of success there including Moto GP.  Yet, since COTA opened, the Indy Car Series has not added it to its schedule.  However, there is a rumor fresh off the interwebs that suggests that Indy Car may finally visit COTA this year.  The theory behind this rumor comes off the heels that Indy Car’s opening race in Brazil was suddenly canceled by track officials with no explanation given to the public or to Indy Car.

With the rug suddenly pulled from under them and with one race short on their calendar it might be possible that the Indy Car Series and COTA can strike a deal for a race to replace the canceled Brazil event.  The question is, will it happen?  Is it even being discussed by the decision makers?  No one knows for sure.  As mentioned before, all this falls strictly under the rumor category.

If we get any more information about this we will let you know ASAP!

Tags: · , , , , , , , , ,

F1 Hype: Ferrari Breaks Digital Cover On SF15-T

Posted on 01.30.15 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

Ferrari_SF15T_small

Its raining F1 cars!  Yesterday came the debut of McLaren’s MP4-30 and today the world gets its first look at Scuderia Ferrari’s new SF15-T chassis.  In case you were wondering the “T” stands for turbo…  This new chassis definitely cuts a striking silhouette.  At first glance it may not seem all that different from last year’s car but once you really let your eyes pour over it you start to see the subtle differences.  However, one very noticeable difference is the removal of the weird nose that most 2014 cars had do to some silly rule.  Now the design goes back to a sloping more simplistic nose piece.  In addition to showing off their new car’s lines, Ferrari also dropped a few specs as well.

Ferrari_SF15T_1 Ferrari_SF15T_2 Ferrari_SF15T_3 Ferrari_SF15T_4 Ferrari_SF15T_5

The SF15-T weighs 1547lbs with driver and fluids, the engine has 1.6 liters (or 1600 cc’s) of displacement, the engine redlines at 15,000rpms, and its transmission has 8 forward gears plus reverse.  According to Ferrari the SF15-T took 250,000 total manufacturing hours to complete, is made up of 20,000 square meters of carbon fiber, 100 different metal alloys, and its drivetrain (engine and transmission) comprises of 20,000 different parts.  If you are wondering how Ferrari’s engineers came up with the SF15-T’s shape, it probably hand something to do with the 1,500 hours it spent in a wind tunnel.

Ferrari_SF15T_6 Ferrari_SF15T_7 Ferrari_SF15T_8 Ferrari_SF15T_9 Ferrari_SF15T_specs

All in all I think its safe to say that a lot of time and work went into Ferrari’s new chassis.  The question is can Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen capitalize on it?  Ah time will tell!  In the meantime, click on the thumbnails for larger pictures of the SF15-T.  You can also hit the source link below for a dedicated microsite that is full of videos and other interactive tidbits.

[Source: Ferrari SF15-T microsite]

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , , ,

F1 Hype: McLaren Honda Reveals New MP4-30 Race Car (Video)

Posted on 01.29.15 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

McLarenHonda_MP4-30_small

Early in the A.M. (4am for me to be exact) right after Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso went to the future (see previous post), McLaren Honda finally revealed their 2015 chassis dubbed MP4-30.  This was significant for two reasons.  The first is that this officially launches the rebirth of one of F1’s storied partnerships in McLaren and Honda.  It also marks one of the first times that a car reveal was done exclusively over social media.  That’s right, there was no press conference gala at the McLaren HQ.  The reveal was done by live posting by McLaren via their social media channels (twitter, facebook, instagram), and their website.  I think it was a pretty neat concept to do it this way but I am not so sure other teams will follow suit.

McLarenHonda_MP4-30_1 McLarenHonda_MP4-30_2 McLarenHonda_MP4-30_3 McLarenHonda_MP4-30_4

Anyhow you can finally see the new McLaren Honda in all its glory by clicking on any of the thumbnails or watching the intro video below.  What do you think of it?  I was kind of hoping they would go back to a white and red color scheme like the MP46.  I think the colors they chose look great but since they aren’t associated with Mercedes anymore, why hang on to the silver?  Oh well, either way it still looks pretty fresh.  Let us know what your thoughts are in the comments or tweet us at @MotorworldHype

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Hype Video: Jenson Button And Fernando Alonso Star In “Back To The Race Track”

Posted on 01.29.15 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

McLaren_BackToTheRaceTrack_JensonButton_FernandoAlonso

If the classic movie Back To The Future has taught us anything, its that the “future” officially happens in a little under 10 months away on October 21st 2015 at 7:28pm.  However, that fact didn’t stop McLaren Automotive, Jenson Button, and Fernando Alonso to gloriously recreate one of the most iconic scenes in BTTF but naturally, a McLaren 650S plays the part of the time machine rather than a Delorean.  Where will Jenson and Fernando go?  To an epic F1 race of the past?  A hovercraft race in the future?  Watch the flick below to find out.  Trust me, its worth it!

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Hype News: Lamborghini Reveals Huracan GT3 Race Car And We Need One (Video)

Posted on 01.21.15 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

Lamborghini_Huracan_GT3_small

In our second motorsports news story of the day Lamborghini has finally revealed the GT3 version of their newest bull, the Huracan.  This widebodied angular beast is over 400lbs lighter than a “normal” Huracan but still retains the same V10 engine.  Despite the Huracan GT3 being mostly developed in-house at Lamborghini, Dallara (who created the current Indy Car chassis) was tapped to aid in design of the GT3’s aerodynamics.  The Huracan GT3 will be rear wheel drive (the stock version is AWD) and come equipped with a six-speed sequential transmission.

Lamborghini_Huracan_GT3_1 Lamborghini_Huracan_GT3_2

The Huracan GT3 will begin competing this year in the Blancpain Endurance Series in Europe.  Although I would not be surprised if we eventually see the Huracan GT3 competing state side as well.  In fact, Lamborghini’s newest race car is available for sale to any interested parties for about $430,000.  I’d get one but I am a bit short, you know how it goes.  To see HD resolution pics of the Huracan GT3 just click the thumbnails and for a video of the car in action just scroll below.

Press Release:

Sant’Agata Bolognese, 21 January 2015. Automobili Lamborghini has presented the new Lamborghini Huracán GT3, in a world premiere at its headquarters in Sant’Agata Bolognese. The unveiling ceremony was carried out in the presence of media, customers and partners from around the world.

The GT3 competitor makes its debut following that of the new Huracán LP 620-2 Super Trofeo, which will be the protagonist of the Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo in Europe, Asia and North America from this year.

Starting in 2015, the Huracán GT3 will line up in the Blancpain Endurance Series that runs over five venues in Europe, among which is included the famous Spa-Francorchamps 24-hours race.

The growth and success of Lamborghini motorsports activities throughout the world has heightened its appeal to partners: the prestigious Indonesian oil and energy petroleum company PERTAMINA will be the official technical partner of Lamborghini Squadra Corse activities in the coming years.

”With the Huracán GT3, Lamborghini Squadra Corse takes a further step forward in the development and production of a race car for this category, which is among the most prestigious and challenging in international motorsport. Lamborghini is thus for the first time directly involved in GT motorsport activities with the in-house development of this new model,” declared Stephan Winkelmann, President and CEO of Automobili Lamborghini. ”We are proud and delighted to announce the new partnership with PERTAMINA, which will further support our motorsport activities.”

“We are proud to be the partner of Automobili Lamborghini as one of the world’s most prestigious super sports car marques. This cooperation confirms PERTAMINA’s position as the technology partner of Lamborghini Squadra Corse, connected to our vision of becoming a World Class Energy Company with the mission to expand our market globally,” said Ahmad Bambang, Marketing Director of PERTAMINA.

The Lamborghini Huracán GT3 is equipped with an Alu-Carbon chassis and a fully integrated FIA-compliant roll-cage. The subframe has been modified both at the front and rear to accommodate a high performance water radiator (front), and for a better positioning of the gearbox (rear), improving aerodynamics. The kerb weight is 1239 Kg with a 42/58 front/rear weight distribution. The final weight will be set by the FIA BOP.

The bodywork is in composite materials and, along with the aerodynamics, has been developed in collaboration with Dallara Engineering with the direct involvement of the founder Gian Paolo Dallara. Aerodynamics have been tuned to grant the best possible air flow penetration, and maximum adherence and traction in any condition on any asphalt. Efficiency has been improved thanks to the rear adjustable wing, adjustable front diffuser and louvres. The new aerodynamics also allow improved cooling of the braking system.

As for the Huracán Super Trofeo, the GT3 is equipped with new bodywork fast- fittings and equipped with a new, enhanced-performing engine and gearbox oil cooler.

Special attention has been given to safety, with the new Lamborghini Huracán GT3 equipped with a carbon frame 8862 specification seat; an OMP fire extinguishing system; and an innovative roof hatch which enables, in case of need, quick assistance by medical personnel through the roof of the car. Seat belts are provided by OMP, the fuel tank is an FT3 type and the pedals are adjustable.

Front and rear lights are LED. The new multifunction steering wheel has been re-engineered along with OMP.

The new rear-wheel drive Huracán GT3 adopts the V10 direct injection engine mounted on the road car, managed by a Bosch Motorsport control unit that also manages traction control, gearbox and the TFT display on the dashboard. All wiring and connectors are designed specifically for racing. The engine is fixed on the chassis by rigid mountings and is coupled with a sequential six-speed gearbox, according to FIA regulations, and a three-disc racing clutch.

The braking system is made up by 380 x 34 mm steel discs at the front (6 pot), and 355 x 32mm steel discs at the back (4 pot), according to FIA regulations, equipped with Bosch ABS. This system features 12 different settings that can be actioned directly from the steering wheel, as can traction control. The tyre sizes are 315/680 at the front and 325/705 at the back. The car is equipped with a pneumatic lifting system.

In Europe, the Huracán GT3 is priced at 369,000 Euro (excluding taxes) ex works.

Lamborghini’s newest raging bull race car has already made its track debut in development tests in recent months, under the supervision of head of motorsport Giorgio Sanna. ”The first GT3 car from Lamborghini will allow talented young drivers the opportunity to contest a Lamborghini in competitions such as the challenging 2015 Blancpain Endurance Series. This season will be an important one for us to gather experience from a category as demanding as GT3, but at the same time we are offering a competitive product to our customers. It will be a busy year, as the Huracán LP 620-2 Super Trofeo will also debut in our Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo series in Europe, USA and Asia.”

Grasser Racing Team will line up two new Huracán GT3s in the 2015 Blancpain Endurance Series. The Austrian team – 2013 Blancpain Sprint Series Pro-Am Champion and third in the 2014 Pro Class – will field the two official test drivers of Lamborghini Squadra Corse: Fabio Babini (ITA) and Adrian Zaugg (RSA) now promoted to factory drivers, and the Italian Mirko Bortolotti who impressed in the 2014 Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo Europe.

Working alongside them will be three young talents from Lamborghini’s Young Drivers Program: Giovanni Venturini (ITA), Jeroen Mul (NED) and Andrew Palmer (USA). All three have been promoted to the Lamborghini Squadra Corse GT3 Junior Team. This new program features a step up from the Young Drivers Program, with the aim of selecting the best talents to be involved in testing sessions and GT3 racing.

The Italian Edoardo Piscopo and the Serbian Milos Pavlovic have also been promoted to official test drivers for Lamborghini Squadra Corse. Winners of both the 2014 PRO Class in the European Lamborghini Blancpain Super Trofeo and the World Final, they will be in charge of the GT3 car’s development across the world.

THE 2015 BLANCPAIN ENDURANCE SERIES CALENDAR

11-12 April Monza, ITA
23-24 May Silverstone, GBR
19-20 June Paul Ricard, FRA
23-26 July Spa-Francorchamps (24 Ore), BEL
19-20 September Nürburgring, GER

 

Automobili utomobili Lamborghini S.p.A.
Founded in 1963, Automobili Lamborghini is headquartered in Sant’Agata Bolognese, in Northeastern Italy. The Lamborghini Huracán LP 610-4, which has made its world debut at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show is the successor to the iconic Gallardo and redefines the luxury super sports car driving experience with its innovative technology and outstanding performance. The Aventador LP 700-4, in Coupé and Roadster offerings, represents the reference point in the world of V12-powered, luxury super sports cars. With 129 dealerships worldwide, in little more than half a century Lamborghini has created an uninterrupted series of extraordinary, exclusive cars that include the 350 GT, Miura, Espada, Countach, Diablo, Murciélago, and several limited series like the Reventón, Sesto Elemento and Aventador J. The Veneno Coupé, the Egoista and the Veneno Roadster, have been created to celebrate the brand’s 50th anniversary year in 2013.

Tags: · , , , , , , , ,

Hype News: U.S. Marine Staff Sergeant Liam Dwyer To Drive Full Time With Mazda MX-5 In Continential Tire SportsCar Challenge

Posted on 01.21.15 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

Liam Dwyer and Tom Long on Lime Rock Podium_small

What does a kick-ass U.S. Marine Staff Sergeant do when he is done with his military career? Join a racing team and start kicking ass there, that’s what!  Liam Dwyer (said kick-ass Staff Sergeant) has been racing for a while but only on a part time basis.  However, in 2015 he will join Freedom Autosport, a team created to honor the men and women serving in the armed forces, to race full time with teammate Andrew Carbonell in the Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge in a Mazda MX-5 race car.

In 2011, Staff Sergeant Dwyer was injured while serving in Afghanistan and as a result became an amputee, losing most of his left leg.  Despite such a severe injury he did not let that stop him from pursing a career in motorsports and in 2014 in just his second professional outing he won (with co-driver Tom Long) the Lime Rock Park Continental Tire ST race on Memorial Day weekend, all while wearing a special prosthetic leg attachment.  Talk about inspirational!

Staff Sergeant Dwyer will have his work cut out for him this year though as he takes on the 10 race Sports Car Challenge season this year starting off later this month at Daytona and finishing in October at Road Atlanta with every race in between held at highly technical, difficult tracks, including Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.

I wish Staff Sergeant Dwyer luck!  If you want to follow along with him this season you can follow Liam on Twitter at @LiamDwyerRacing

Press Release:

LIAM DWYER ENLISTS WITH MAZDA MOTORSPORTS

Dwyer shifting from active duty with the U.S. Marines to full-time racer

IRVINE, Calif. (January 21, 2015) — Mazda announced the addition of Liam Dwyer as a full-time racer in the 2015 Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge.  Dwyer stunned the racing world in 2014 when he teamed up with Tom Long to co-drive their Freedom Autosport Mazda MX-5 to the win in the Lime Rock Park Continental Tire ST race on Memorial Day weekend.  The win was a made for Hollywood storyline as Dwyer was competing in only his second professional race, and he was doing it with an artificial leg, having been injured while serving as a U.S. Marine Staff Sergeant in Afghanistan just three years previously.

For 2015, Dwyer will be paired up with Andrew Carbonell for the entire ten-race season beginning January 23rd at Daytona International Speedway.  Carbonell scored two wins with Freedom Autosport and Mazda in 2014.

Quotes:

John Doonan, Motorsports Director, Mazda North American Operations:  “While we are all impressed with Liam on so many levels, we have recruited him for the same reason we recruit any driver.  We believe that he can help Mazda win races and the 2015 manufacturers championship.  His personal story is just the icing on the cake and helps us connect with a bigger story.”

Liam Dwyer:  “I am very excited for the 2015 season. I thought things couldn’t get better after last season, but Mazda has once again shown how immensely awesome they are. To be granted a full ride in the Freedom Autosport Mazda MX-5 is the ultimate dream come true. And on top of that, I have one of the fastest MX-5 drivers, Andrew Carbonell, as my co-driver. I can’t thank Derek Whitis, Rhett O’Doski and everyone at Mazda enough for this opportunity.”

Andrew Carbonell:   “I am excited to be confirmed with Mazda and Freedom Autosport for the 2015 IMSA Continental Tire Challenge season. I am also proud to be co-driving with one of the most incredible racing stories recently; Marine Staff Sergeant Liam Dwyer. I have had the honor of getting to know Liam through the select races he drove with Freedom Autosport in 2014. To watch the inspiration and motivation from Liam from afar makes one understand the sacrifices one makes to follow their dreams whatever the circumstance may be. I look forward to continuing success and adding more victories together for Freedom Autosport and Mazda.”

Derek Whitis, Owner, Freedom Autosport:  “When we created Freedom Autosport, it was to honor the men and women serving in the armed forces, especially the U.S. Marines.  We are honored to have Liam join the team full-time in 2015.  Just as important, we look forward to having additional marines served other key roles on the team.”

The 2015 Continental Tires SportsCar race schedule is as follows:

Jan. 23 – Daytona International Speedway (Florida)

March 20 – Sebring International Raceway (Florida)

May 2 – Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca (Monterey, California)

June 27 – Watkins Glen International (New York)

July 11 – Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (Toronto, Canada)

July 25 – Lime Rock Park (Connecticut)

Aug. 8 – Road America (Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin)

Aug. 22 – Virginia International Raceway

Sept. 18 – Circuit of The Americas (Austin, Texas)

Oct. 2 – Road Atlanta (Georgia)

About Mazda, Mazda Motorsports, and MAZDASPEED

Mazda is a leading player in all aspects of sports car racing with an emphasis on endurance road racing.  Mazda is the number-one brand for road-racers across North America among both club racers and professionals.  Thousands of Mazda-powered grassroots racers compete in various classes with the SCCA and NASA highlighted by Spec Miata, the world’s largest spec class with over 2,500 cars built.  Via the Mazda Road to Indy and the Mazda SportsCar Racing Academy, Mazda supports racers at all levels of the sport from club racing up to the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship where it races with production SKYACTIV Technology.

Mazda remains the only Asian car company to score an overall win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans (1991).  Mazda has had a naming rights agreement at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca since 2000.

Mazda Motorsports is managed by Mazda North American Operations (MNAO).  MNAO is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States and Mexico through nearly 700 dealers.  Operations in Mexico are managed by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City.

Consumer information can be found at www.mazdausa.com, with press information at www.mazdausamedia.com.  Racers and fans can follow the action on Facebook (Mazda Motorsports), Twitter (@mazdaracing), Instagram (MazdaMotorsport) and www.mazdamotorsports.com

# # #

[Source: Mazda Motorsports]

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , ,

Hype Video: Fredric Aasbo Takes A Kid On His Dream Ride Through The Streets Of LA In His Formula Drift Scion tC

Posted on 01.06.15 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

dreamrideLA_video

Ever want to know what its like to suddenly come across a drift car in the middle of the city and then have the owner of said drift car take you on the ride of your life through public streets?  Papadakis Racing just dropped a new flick that illustrates just such a daydream.  In “Dream Ride LA” Fredric Aasbo takes a young kid drifting through the streets of LA in many iconic locations.  Is it a bit of a rip off of what Ken Block did? Sure.  But, its still pretty entertaining to watch!  Scroll down and check out the five minute film below as well as the official press release.

Press Release:

REDONDO BEACH, Calif. (January 6, 2015) — Papadakis Racing and driver Fredric Aasbo today launch #DreamrideLA, a short video showcasing the precision driving of top drift competitor Aasbo and presented by Scion Racing, Motegi Racing and Hankook Tire.

The five-minute video, available on the Papadakis Racing YouTube channel, features Dillon Bryant Akers as a boy who makes an astonishing discovery on the bank of the LA River and is rewarded with the experience of a lifetime in the 800-plus horsepower Papadakis Racing Scion tC Formula Drift competition car.

“A lot of kids grow up dreaming about being in a real racecar,” said Aasbo. “In Dreamride LA I had the chance to make one of those dreams come true.”

Team boss Stephan Papadakis said that once he and Aasbo decided to make a video, it was important to innovate and push the genre forward. The narrative approach offered by director Michael Tiddes was a perfect fit.

“So many of the drifting videos out there focus on the technique of the stunts and the technical aspects of the car,” said Papadakis. “In Dreamride LA the driving is amazing and the Scion tC is definitely front-and-center, but we also wanted to spotlight the experience. This video is personal and we hope that resonates with the fans.”

Tiddes, a feature film director whose big screen credits include box office hits A Haunted House and A Haunted House 2, merged Hollywood techniques with a fast-paced videogame aesthetic to create a short film that captures the emotional intensity of the drifting experience.

Aasbo is one of the world’s leading drift competitors. He won the 2014 Formula Drift Asia title and finished runner-up in the 2014 Formula Drift championship. Originally from Ski, Norway, Aasbo splits his time between his native country and Redondo Beach, California. This is his first feature project.

Team owner Stephan Papadakis is a legend of sport-compact racing who began building his reputation in the 1990s with the first front-wheel-drive, tube-chassis drag car in the U.S. A respected innovator, Papadakis moved to drifting in 2005 and has led his team to two Formula Drift championship titles (2007, 2008) and runner-up in the 2014 and 2010 championship seasons.

New Jersey native Tiddes is a comedy specialist who has worked with legends Keenen Ivory Wayans and brothers Shawn and Marlon Wayans for over a decade. His viral videos featuring talents including Damon Wayans Jr., Affion Crockett, Omar Epps and FRED have become internet phenomena reaching more than 50 million views.

Young star Dillon Bryant Akers is the son of Veronica Valdes and actor Howard Alonzo (Akers) and the godson of Damon Wayans Jr. He made his acting debut in the Wayans family pilot Growing Up Wayans, and works with the Wayans family and Producer Will.i.Am on various projects. Outside of acting, Dillon is an AAU-ranked basketball player and an honor roll student.

#DreamrideLA is available on the Papadakis Racing YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/papadakisracing). Follow #DreamrideLA on social media for more.

THANKS TO OUR VIDEO PARTNERS:

Hankook Tire (www.hankooktireusa.com); Scion Racing (www.scion.com); Motegi Racing (www.motegiracing.com)

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , , ,

12 Days Of Hype: Skip Barber Racing School

Posted on 12.15.14 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

skipbarber_formula_car_small

Do you have an aspiring race car driver in your life? Or maybe just someone who really likes a good thrill?  If so we would recommend gifting that person a course at Skip Barber Racing School.  Skip Barber is one of the oldest and most respected racing schools around and they have facilities at most major race tracks in the country.  There is also a wide variety of courses that are available.  Everything from one day “high performance” driving schools in cars like the Porsche 911 to 3 day racing schools in formula cars.  Many of their programs are stepping stones to professional driving careers but Skip Barber is also a good option for those who just want to have some fun behind the wheel.  If you are a parent, they also offer teen safety driving courses which; judging by the way I’ve seen some teens drive should be a serious consideration!

The downside is that Skip Barber Racing School courses can be pretty expensive.  However, there are ways to save money.  They usually have promotions and coupons during the holidays and more money can be saved by using your own car rather than one of theirs (as long as it meets requirements).

If you can afford it a gift like this will definitely earn you MAJOR points! Just click the source link at the bottom of the post for more info.

[Source: SkipBarber.com]

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Hype: New Indy Lights Cars To Be Powered By Mazda. Indy Lights Now Officially Part Of Mazda Motorsports Ladder

Posted on 12.12.14 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

Mazda North American Operations Dallara Indy Lights

Mazda just announced that they are officially taking over as the engine provider for the Indy Lights series which is a feeder series directly to Indy Car.  Previously, Indy Lights cars were powered by V8s that were derivatives of Nissan/Infiniti engines.  The new Indy Lights cars will be powered by a version of Mazda’s 4 cylinder 2.0 liter turbocharged MZR-R engine.  If that engine sounds familiar its probably because it is the same powerplant Mazda developed in partnership with Advanced Engine Research (AER) for Mazda’s American LeMan’s series program.  The Indy Lights version will have slightly less power (450hp) than the LeMan’s version (500hp) however the Indy Lights MZR-R is also built for durability as Mazda Motorsports claims that one of these engines can go for an entire Indy Lights season without needing a rebuild.  This should make the racing much better with no mechanical DNFs and also make things a little bit easier financially on the teams.

Here’s hoping that the addition of lower cost, higher efficiency engines to the Indy Lights series results in more talent making their way up to the Indy Car series!  Expect the new Indy Lights chassis and Mazda engines to line up on the grid next season.  For more info, feel free to check out the official press release below.

Press Release:

Mazda Powers Indy Lights in 2015

Mazda Enters Third Decade of Open-Wheel Racing with Addition of Indy Lights

December 11, 2014 (INDIANAPOLIS) — Mazda announced the addition of Mazda-power in the all-new 2015 Dallara Indy Lights chassis at the annual Performance Racing Industry (PRI) Trade Show. This was the latest development in its ongoing commitment to motorsports, which includes the Mazda Road to Indy, the most comprehensive driver development system in the world.

While most noted for success in sports cars, Mazda has been active in open-wheel, formula-car racing since 1984.  In recent years, that has developed into the Mazda Road to Indy, where aspiring racers can advance upwards along a logical progression from karts all the way to the Verizon IndyCar Series.  In 2014, Mazda powered both the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship and the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires.  For 2015, Mazda adds Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires.

The all-new Dallara IL-15 Indy Lights chassis will be powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged Mazda MZR-R.  Originally developed in conjunction with Advanced Engine Research (AER), the MZR-R was first campaigned by Mazda in the American Le Mans Series and Mazda customer teams in the European Le Mans Series.  The engine enjoyed several milestone victories, among them were Mazda’s first-ever major North American overall sports car racing win and the 2011 LMP1 engine manufacturers championship.  The engine, further developed by AER, will be designed to produce 450 horsepower and last an entire season without a rebuild.

The 2015 Mazda Road to Indy schedule will kick off with the fifth annual pre-season Cooper Tires Winterfest at NOLA Motorsports Park, just outside of New Orleans, La., on February 18-20 and will move to Barber Motorsports Park near Birmingham, Ala., on February 24-26.  The official season will open at St. Petersburg on March 27-29 and conclude at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on September 11-13.

John Doonan, Director, Mazda Motorsports: “The Mazda Road to Indy is a great showcase for what Mazda represents.  Our strength is in helping drivers move up the ranks.  Almost a third of the Indy 500 field traces their roots to Mazda.  Adding the Indy Lights series allows us to have an even longer, more productive relationship with the Indy stars of the future.  We were among the first to recognize the on- and off-track talents of racers like Simon Pagenaud, James Hinchcliffe, Marco Andretti, Graham Rahal, and many others.  We can’t wait for the season to start at St. Pete, all the way to autumn in Monterey at our own Mazda Raceway for the season finales.”

Dan Andersen, Owner and CEO of Andersen Promotions:  “From the onset of my involvement with Indy Lights, it’s been my hope to have our longtime partner, Mazda, join us in this effort. My decision to select AER as our engine provider was consciously made knowing the substantial Mazda involvement with the engine proposed by AER, and today I am delighted to confirm that the IL-15’s engine does indeed have deep Mazda roots. Mazda does more for open-wheel racing in North America than any other manufacturer, and its full involvement in the Mazda Road to Indy is great news for all.”

Mark Miles, CEO of Hulman & Co, the parent of INDYCAR and the Indianapolis Motor Speedway:  “Today’s announcement that Mazda has agreed to become the Indy Lights engine supplier next season is another pivotal step forward for the series. Mazda’s increased commitment to Indy Lights, and their continued support of the entire Mazda Road to Indy ladder system, is instrumental in the development of the next generation of Verizon IndyCar Series drivers. We’re thankful for their partnership and certainly look forward to having Mazda power behind the new Dallara IL-15 chassis in 2015.”

Chris Pantani, Director of Motorsports for Cooper Tires:  “Knowing that Mazda is once again our partner, this time in Indy Lights, continues to prove that the combination of Cooper Tires and Mazda is the best choice in the career path of a developmental driver.  Our relationship with Mazda started in 2006, and continues to be the path chosen by many champions in the early stages of their careers.”

Spencer Pigot, Champion – 2014 Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires:  “It would not be an exaggeration to say that I would not be where I am today without Mazda and the Mazda Road to Indy. They have been a huge part of my career since I began car racing. I’m thrilled to be the first driver to ever earn three Mazda scholarships, the first one being in 2009 when I was still in karting, to making the move up to the Skip Barber National Championship.  The cost to rise through the racing ranks is so expensive, that it is only with support like the Mazda Road to Indy that many drivers can succeed.  I can’t wait to start the season in 2015.”

About Mazda, Mazda Motorsports, and MAZDASPEED

Mazda is a leading player in all aspects of sports car racing with an emphasis on endurance road racing.  Mazda is the number-one brand for road-racers across North America among both club racers and professionals.  Thousands of Mazda-powered grassroots racers compete in various classes with the SCCA and NASA highlighted by Spec Miata, the world’s largest spec class with over 2,500 cars built.  Via the Mazda Road to Indy and the Mazda SportsCar Racing Academy, Mazda supports racers at all levels of the sport from club racing up to the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship where it races with production SKYACTIV Technology.

Mazda remains the only Asian car company to score an overall win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans (1991).  Mazda has had a naming rights agreement at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca since 2000.

Mazda Motorsports is managed by Mazda North American Operations (MNAO).  MNAO is headquartered in Irvine, Calif., and oversees the sales, marketing, parts and customer service support of Mazda vehicles in the United States and Mexico through nearly 700 dealers.  Operations in Mexico are managed by Mazda Motor de Mexico in Mexico City.

Consumer information can be found at www.mazdausa.com, with press information at www.mazdausamedia.com.  Racers and fans can follow the action on Facebook (Mazda Motorsports), Twitter (@mazdaracing), Instagram (MazdaMotorsport) and www.mazdamotorsports.com

# # #

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

F1 Hype: Abu Dhabi Grand Prix: A Champion Is Crowned (Quick Result And Video)

Posted on 11.24.14 | Andrew Beckford No Comments

F1_2014_AbuDhabi_GP_small

Did you miss the final race of the 2014 Formula 1 season this weekend?  Did you forget to DVR it?  Have you some how avoided all forms of mass media and actually have no idea what happened or who won?  All of these things are very unlikely but hell I am going to go ahead and post this anyway.  Scroll down to learn who won the final race of the season and more importantly who captured the championship.  There is also a quick race recap courtesy of NBC Sports.

WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW!!

 

1st: Lewis Hamilton
2nd: Felipe Massa
3rd: Valtteri Bottas

Lewis Hamilton is the 2014 Formula One World Champion!

Race Recap:

Tags: · , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,